Ira Chernus

Ira Chernus

Ira Chernus is Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder and author of the online " and the book, "American Nonviolence: The History of an Idea."

Articles by this author

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Monday, April 17, 2017
Trump, A Symptom Of What?
You could hear the deep sadness in the preacher’s voice as he named “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government." With those words, the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., launched a scathing indictment of America’s war in Vietnam. It was April 4, 1967. That first...
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Sunday, April 09, 2017
We Are Already At War With China
I was in Waikiki, Hawaii, recently. But not for pleasure. I was there out of obligation, fulfilling my parental duty to visit my son and his husband, who live there. I’ll admit, though, that I was getting some pleasure, looking out from the balcony of the 19 th floor studio apartment I had rented...
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Thursday, March 23, 2017
Why The Resistance Must Do More Than Resist
The resistance is a huge movement—yuge! At least that’s how it feels when you are in it. And it’s true that the United States has not seen anything like this since the Vietnam war days. Still, Trump and the Republicans in Washington roll on, with some new horror every day. Maybe the resistance isn’...
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Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Why We Protest: A Message for Middle America
I live in a small, pretty typical middle-American city. For decades it was rock-ribbed Republican. Recently it’s been turning slowly but steadily more liberal. So now it is solidly purple. When we stand out on Main Street (yes, it’s really called Main Street) at our weekly progressive vigil, we get...
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Monday, February 06, 2017
Field of Fright: The Terror Inside Trump's White House
What kind of national security policy will the Trump administration pursue globally? On this issue, as on so many others, the incoming president has offered enough contradictory clues, tweets, and comments that the only definitive answer right now is: Who knows? During his presidential campaign he...
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Friday, January 27, 2017
Trying to Save the World Should Be Fun
Since Election Day my mood has been sunk deep in the shadows. It’s been hard to find the energy to smile, even on the sunniest day. Then came the Women’s March. I arrived late and joined the march in mid-route. The signs, the banners, the colors, and everywhere the smiles—it was like plunging into...
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Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Moving Beyond Resistance
In the very early morning hours of November 9 , when we learned that Donald Trump—however improbably and perhaps illegitimately—would be the next president of the United States, a battle broke out inside my head. It is still raging on. It’s a battle for control of my life. On one side is a...
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Wednesday, January 11, 2017
MLK's Big Mistake: Love and Strategy in the Age of Trump
With the MLK holiday approaching, I keep thinking of this wisdom from the eminent progressive historian Eric Foner: “Single-focus organizations, which have proliferated in the last generation, need to recapture the sense of being part of a larger movement for social change that addresses diverse...
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Sunday, December 11, 2016
Joy Trumps Fear
Sometimes I force myself to look at photos of Donald Trump, to confront the harsh reality that he will indeed, in all likelihood, soon be the president of the United States. What strikes me most forcefully in that face is the total lack of joy. Oh, I imagine he can feel plenty of pleasure. he seems...
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Tuesday, February 02, 2016
America's New Vietnam in the Middle East
It was half a century ago, but I still remember it vividly. “We have to help South Vietnam,” I explained. “It’s a sovereign nation being invaded by another nation, North Vietnam.” “No, no,” my friend protested. “There’s just one Vietnam, from north to south, divided artificially. It’s a civil war...
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