Thursday's News & Ideas

  • Seeking diversity near DC
  • $4.75M for injuries in youth ski trip
  • That's why it's called faith
  • Power and peace
  • The Old Rugged Apple
  • Decide, already

White Prince George's churches seek diversity to surviveWashington Post: Traditionally white churches in county next to DC try to attract more blacks and other minority members to offset declines and mirror changing demographics.

Jury says church must pay $4.75MTampa (Fla.) Tribune: Florida church must pay $4.75 million over a church ski trip that left a then-teenager with severe injuries.

Are you smarter than a Christian?Salon: A study finds atheists know more about religion. For believers, it's a bracing reminder that faith is not enough.

Power and peaceInside Higher Ed: Diana Chapman Walsh walked out of a university presidency having found her personal power -- and her voice -- by learning to survive in the vortex of positional power.

Apple logo is an agnostic's crucifix, Star of DavidFast Company: Study finds that brand name logos may do the same thing for some people that a pendant of a crucifix or Star of David does for others.

Buzz builds around new unofficial saint of abuse victims, whistle-blowersReligion News Service: Some Catholics already have unofficial title for 19th century nun, Mother Mary MacKillop: Patron Saint of Whistle-blowers.America: Mary MacKillop: Patron saint of sexual abuse victims?

The Spark

Why so many people can't make decisionsSome people meet, fall in love and get married right away. Others can spend hours in the sock aisle at the department store, weighing the pros and cons of buying a pair of wool argyles instead of cotton striped. For decades psychologists largely ignored ambivalence because they didn't think it was meaningful. But now researchers are investigating how ambivalence, or a lack of it, affects people's lives, and how they might be able to make better decisions.

Want to get News & Ideas in your inbox every weekday?Subscribe to our News & Ideas newsletter.