Around the Web

Check out these recent articles from around the web:

Turning our backs on Syrian atrocities by Michael Gerson: “This is the problem with impunity for mass atrocities. It encourages future horrors, which create cycles of terror and revenge, which destabilize whole regions and generate new threats. Which is why atrocity prevention is a core national security interest.”

Afghan interpreter visa program expanded in a rare bipartisan vote by Thomas Gibbons-Neff: “In a rare show of bipartisanship, the Senate on Friday passed legislation that will grant an additional 1,000 visas to Afghan interpreters who have worked for the U.S. military and are seeking a chance to come to the United States.”

Paul Ryan’s stale ideas on poverty by EJ Dionne: “There is such a hunger for something other than partisanship that the temptation is to praise the new Ryan for being better than the old Ryan and to leave it at that…But forgive me if I see his overall proposal as a nicely presented abdication of federal responsibility for the poor. ‘Experimenting’ with people’s food-stamp money is not something we should sign onto.”

China’s grim religious freedom problem by Katrina Lantos Swett and M. Zuhdi Jasser: “The simple proposition that individuals have the right to live out their beliefs openly and peacefully, without fear or intimidation, clearly frightens Chinese authorities, as evidenced by their repressive persecution of numerous faith communities.”

Christians, Campaigns, and Collateral Damage by Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig: “Christianity is always more radical than what comes with ease, and our obligation to love does not conclude at the boundaries of our in-groups.”

Non-Monogamy: Sin By Any Other Name by Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig: “The point is not to build up a habit of abusing those who commit the sin of adultery, but rather to ensure that within Christian discussions of a changing sexual culture, we do not allow our ethics to be subtly manipulated by strategic alterations made to language.”

The Truth About Food Stamps (Hint: They Work and Help Millions) by Kathryn Edin and Luke Shaefer: “So while the economy is still experiencing sluggish growth, perhaps the best thing to do is just not mess with it. SNAP’s not perfect, but on the whole it works, in fact quite well. For the time being, maybe we should just let it do its job.”

American (and Papua New Guinean) exceptionalism by Catherine Rampell: “You’ve probably heard that the United States is one of a handful of countries in the world that doesn’t guarantee paid maternity leave. Turns out, as a result of some laws recently passed abroad, we now appear to be one of just two countries without this policy.”

Is Paul Ryan Still Paul Ryan? by Jonathan Chait: “But until Ryan actually abandons his commitment to what was known at least until last week as the Ryan Plan, he’ll find himself in the same position as he and Romney did in 2012 — offering one set of assurances to conservatives, and another to suspicious swing voters.”

Orban Says He Seeks to End Liberal Democracy in Hungary by Zoltan Simon: “Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said he wants to abandon liberal democracy in favor of an ‘illiberal state,’ citing Russia and Turkey as examples.”

Iraq’s Mosul counts the cost of insurgent rule by AFP: “Fuel is becoming scarce, electricity intermittent at best, and goods that violate the jihadists’ puritanical version of Islam are disappearing from the shelves. Harsh rules are gradually being imposed, which in recent weeks have resulted in the expulsion of Mosul’s Christian community and other minorities that for generations had called the cosmopolitan city home.”

3 Killed in a Facebook Blasphemy Rampage in Pakistan by Waqar Gillani: “A woman and two of her young granddaughters were burned to death Sunday night in the eastern city of Gujranwala after a member of their Ahmadi minority sect was accused of posting a blasphemous picture to Facebook, the police said.”

Boko Haram’s terrifying regional ambitions and a politician’s kidnapped wife by Terrence McCoy: “In an attack that left at least three villagers dead and the region shaken, the militants captured a local mayor — who’s also a religious leader — and five members of his family. They also surrounded Cameroon’s vice prime minister’s house for nearly an hour, kidnapped his wife and headed back toward the Nigerian border.”

Panel group warns of marijuana’s dangers by Anna Maria Basquez: “Theologically speaking, marijuana is not supported. Because human cognition is a precondition to making choices, altering our consciousness is wrong from the moral theological standpoint, said Dr. E. Christian Brugger, a professor of moral theology at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver and a member of the panel.”

The problem isn’t Central America’s child refugees. It’s the countries they come from. by Michael Strain: “We could provide more money and expert knowledge to help Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador build institutions of justice and public safety like prisons and well-trained and equipped police forces, increase economic development assistance, step up efforts to freeze the financial networks of the criminal organizations responsible for much of the violence, help these countries to clean up their corrupt judges and police forces and mobilize an emergency international security effort.”

Immigration becomes ‘pro-life’ issue for Catholic leaders by John Allen: “From the beginning, however, Francis has been a pope of the social gospel, making equivalent priorities of poverty relief, conflict resolution, human trafficking, and the environment, as well as immigrant rights. His aim seems to be to expand the notion of what counts as a ‘pro-life’ issue, meaning a matter where human dignity is at stake and where the church is obligated to respond.”