Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is senior editor, digital at The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Fighting Right

It was a modest and, I thought, obvious proposal that I put forward two weeks ago on this page: That liberals give up the notion of creating a cohesive religious left movement that could act as an effective counterforce to the animus of the religious right. Instead, I argued, liberals would do well to claim our own moral agency by virtue of our own humanity and the essential values of liberalism, which encompass the most admirable tenets of the world's great religions. My jumping-off point for this thesis was the latest strife in the Episcopal Church USA, which is riven with controversy over its 2003 installation of a gay bishop in the Diocese of New Hampshire, and last month's election of Kathleen Jefferts Schori, a woman who supports the gay bishop, as the American church's chief prelate. With all of the mainline Protestant churches engaged in similar internal battles, I argued, it was counterproductive to expect the leadership of these grand old faiths to hold, for the rest of us,...

A Canterbury Tale

It was with great joy that religious members of the progressive movement received, late last month, news of the election of Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori to the top leadership position in the U.S. Episcopal Church. For one, the fact of the bishop's gender heralded an important first for Episcopalians, whose rites and rituals cling closely to those of the Roman Catholic Church. Furthermore, the inclusive position taken by Jefferts Schori with regard to the full participation of gays and lesbians in the church sent a powerful message to Christian churches around the globe. That message was received without amusement by the top man in the Church of England, the Episcopalians' parent church. As head of the church founded by King Henry the VIII, the Archbishop of Canterbury presides, as well, over the Anglican Communion, the worldwide body of Anglican and Episcopal churches affiliated with the Church of England. Archbishop Rowan Williams' reaction to the election of Jefferts Schori was...

Divine Denial

Each of the Big Three networks, plus Fox's broadcast network, have rejected a paid advertisement from the United Church of Christ that bears the tagline, "God doesn't reject people. Neither do we." Viacom's gay-targeted cable channel, LOGO, has also rejected the ad, which conveys a message of inclusiveness, even depicting a gay couple. The UCC's "ejector-seat" ad speaks to the rejection of various categories of people by unnamed Christian churches -- a touchy subject for a nation that deems itself to be among the most God-fearing on Earth. It shows people who represent frequent targets of discrimination being ejected -- into the air -- from a church pew via a mechanism involving springboards hidden in the pews, controlled by an unseen party represented by an apparently white, male hand pressing a button. First to be ejected is an African-American woman trying to quiet her crying baby. Next are two men who appear to be a gay couple, a man who looks to be of Middle Eastern descent and...

Divine Denial

Once again, the major television networks have rejected a United Church of Christ ad that's all about...inclusiveness. Each of the Big Three networks, plus Fox's broadcast network, have rejected a paid advertisement from the United Church of Christ that bears the tagline, "God doesn't reject people. Neither do we." Viacom's gay-targeted cable channel, LOGO, has also rejected the ad, which conveys a message of inclusiveness, even depicting a gay couple. The UCC's "ejector-seat" ad speaks to the rejection of various categories of people by unnamed Christian churches -- a touchy subject for a nation that deems itself to be among the most God-fearing on Earth. It shows people who represent frequent targets of discrimination being ejected -- into the air -- from a church pew via a mechanism involving springboards hidden in the pews, controlled by an unseen party represented by an apparently white, male hand pressing a button. First to be ejected is an African-American woman trying to quiet...

The Things She Couriered

By nominating Harriet Miers for a seat on the Supreme Court, President Bush has not simply named a member of his political staff -- and his onetime personal lawyer -- for one of the most powerful positions in the nation; he has named a staff member who was likely privy to the most confidential of material as other White House staffers planned their leak of Valerie Plame's identity as a CIA agent. When columnist Robert Novak outed Plame in July 2003, Miers had just ascended to the post of deputy chief of staff for policy from a two-year stint as Bush's staff secretary, “the person in charge of all the paperwork that crosses the president's desk,” according to a description of Miers' duties published on the conservative Web site NewsMax last year. In an administration so ethically challenged, is it possible that Miers knew nothing of any shenanigans, be they leaking, weapons of mass destruction, or Ken Lay? The position she currently occupies is, after all, parallel to that held by the...

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