Mark Coppenger

Mark Coppenger is managing editor of the Kairos Journal.

Old Hickory, the Preds, and the Six-Day War


Last Sunday, on the eve of the 50th anniversary of Israel’s Six-Day War, I drove out onto Old Hickory Boulevard near my Nashville home, savoring the Predators’ first-ever victory in a Stanley Cup finals game, one gained at the Penguins’ expense the night before. And I’d like to suggest a connection between Andrew Jackson, the […]

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Brother, Can You Spare a Maxim?


The story’s told of a young fella down in Alabama who, riding out of the woods, happened upon an Alabama football practice. Mystified, he asked Coach Bryant what was going on, and the Bear said the point was to take the ball and run through the opposition toward the line at the other end of […]

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Fiduciary Virtues: How Important Is Donald Trump’s ‘Character’?


As an ROTC product, I got my infantry credentials in the summer of 1971. The Vietnam War was winding down, and, to my surprise, they didn’t need all us young lieutenants on active duty. So they offered us the Guard/Reserve option if we’d agree to a longer commitment. I took it so that I could […]

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Should Immigrants Bear First-Amendment Affidavits?


Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring led to a virtual worldwide ban on DDT, beginning with EPA strictures on American use and threats to cut foreign aid to nations continuing with this pesticide. Carson’s science was flawed, and, arguably, our overreaction has led to millions of unnecessary human deaths from malaria in Africa alone. But her […]

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The Hero as Supererogator


The political arena is much given to trash talking these days, with invective, umbrage, and posturing in full play. Internecine insults, harrumphs, and blowbacks are exploding everywhere. Apparently, some of us are “crazies,” “bigots.” Others of us fail as “patriots,” and “heroes.” This last term, ‘hero,’ has particularly intrigued me through the years, and Donald […]

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Optic Cleansing


I’ve never owned a Rebel flag, T-shirt, bumper sticker, or key-chain. No decals, no coffee mug. None. Never will. I’m not keen on capitol displays of the flag. I don’t like, and even hate, some of the connotations and connections. But I do like some of them, and it seems to me that much of […]

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‘Christian’ Paths to Amnesty


I understand the ideological, political, economic, and perhaps even ecclesiastical scramble over immigration “reform,” with various parties exhilarated or terrified at the prospects for gain or loss. I understand the daunting practicalities of it all and calls for emergency compromise. (Exigencies can birth strange policies, including cooperation with one mass murderer, Stalin, to stop another, […]

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Textbook Perfect


America’s Secular Challenge: The Rise of a New National Religion by Herbert London (Encounter Books, 100 pages, $20) I’m picking texts for my seminary, worldview class in the spring, and I think that Herbert London’s new book, America’s Secular Challenge, should be in the mix: 1. It’s wise. Not just clever. London gets it right […]

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The Curious Rationale for a “Day of Silence”


Here and there, across the nation, students will observe a “Day of Silence” today, recognizing “the silencing that gays and lesbians experience in their daily lives.” It’s sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLESN), which predicts wishfully a half-million participants at 4,000 schools. As usual, Manhattan’s Chapin School will fall in line […]

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