This blog is maintained on behalf of the Amy Foundation for the purpose of tracking the best Christian journalism we find on the Web. Our posts regularly identify those news articles or opinions in the mainstream media that represent good faith-based writing and example them for other Christian journalists.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

"Atheists' bleak alternative"

Google News is great! I have it set to search the net for search terms “Christian, Faith, God” and it daily returns top news stories on these topics. Today, it found an Amy Writing Awards-qualifying opinion in The Boston Globe (yes, The Boston Globe), written by Jeff Jacoby, an award-winning Op-Ed writer.

In his 12/13/06 opine, entitled “Atheists' bleak alternative,” Jacoby identifies secularism's great success in Great Britain in banishing “Christmas” from holiday cards. His opinion bids ominous tidings for the United States, where secularists are actively attacking the religious moorings of the holiday on this side of the Atlantic. (See “Groups protest calling Capitol tree a "Christmas Tree" in the Lansing State Journal for an example that hits close to home.)

In his smartly-worded opinion, Jacoby writes:

What is at stake in all this isn't just angels on Christmas cards. What society loses when it discards Judeo-Christian faith and belief in God is something far more difficult to replace: the value system most likely to promote ethical behavior and sustain a decent society. That is because without God, the difference between good and evil becomes purely subjective. What makes murder inherently wrong is not that it feels wrong, but that a transcendent Creator to whom we are answerable commands: "Thou shalt not murder." What makes kindness to others inherently right is not that human reason says so, but that God does: "Love thy neighbor as thyself; I am the Lord."

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I underlined Jacoby’s expert uses of scripture to point out the ease at which he integrated relevant passages into his opinion without editorial reprise. If he can get an Amy Writing Award-qualifying opinion published in a paper like The Boston Globe, it makes sense that other writers—professional or otherwise—can accomplish the same task in smaller ones.

I am going email Jacoby and encourage him to submit this opinion to this year’s Amy Writing Awards contest. He has until January 31, 2007 to mail in a tear sheet and his contact information. That’s all it takes. (For a complete list of rules, please visit

Jeff Jacoby, keep up the good work!

Submitted by,
Bruce Umpstead


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