Saturday, June 30, 2007

Thirty Years Later

Thirty years after I last spoke with Harvard classmate David Blankenhorn, I discovered something amazing. We have both arrived at very similar conclusions about faith, our country, and the future.

David and I both majored in Social Studies, and were magna cum laude graduates of the 1977 class at Harvard. Though we didn't have many classes in common, the Social Studies program was a unique experience. Sophomore year we read "the great books" of history's leading social theorists -- Hegel, John Stuart Mill, Max Weber, Alexis de Toqueville, Sigmund Freud. Then Junior year we took a specialized tutorial ( I studied government regulatory policy ), and Senior year we wrote a thesis (mine was on the structure, conduct, and performance of the American automobile industry).

As I recall, David was a Christian even back then, making him quite remarkable within the Harvard community of the day. I, however, was not, though I could properly have been called a "seeker". It took me almost a decade after Harvard to come to faith, but I made it eventually.

In the 1990's David wrote a fantastic book about the need for fathers in American to behave more like fathers. This was shortly after he founded the non-profit think tank the Institute for American Values.

Now comes another great work from David: The Future of Marriage.

In it, David argues that the preservation and strengthening of the institution of marriage is the single most important thing that can be done to maintain American civilization. I couldn't agree with David more.

David also is a very big proponent of Islamic-Christian engagement, another theme that you will find in my recent book, Letter to an Atheist.

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