February was an extremely fruitful month for the Ruth Institute! I had two trips to the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as a trip to New York City that was extended by the blizzard! Most of these lectures and debates are already available on-line, on our podcast page or on our new Ruth Institute You-Tube page. Thanks to your enthusiasm and support, we have been able to bring the Ruth Institute message to hundreds of students in person, and to thousands more through our on-line presence.
On Feb. 2, I debated at Stanford University on the topic: Is Capitalism compatible with Christianity? This was co-sponsored by the Stanford Catholic Community and the Stanford Objectivist Club, and we had a rousing good time. On Feb. 8, I had an interview at Kings College in Manhattan with Marvin Olasky, editor of World Magazine, and also Provost at Kings College. This interview was held in front of a live audience of students and faculty of Kings College.
On Feb. 9, I did a debate at Columbia Law School on same sex marriage. I also visited with some of the campus ministers at Columbia. That same evening, I gave a lecture with Q&A at Socrates in the City, a Christian lecture club in Manhattan. Socrates in the City caters to a very sophisticated NY audience: I met Lauren Green, Religion Editor of Fox News, and Eric Metaxas, author of Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery, the book that went along with the movie. All these events are already on-line!
My original plan had called for me to hop on a plane early the next morning. But Snowmaggedon intervened! I was stuck in New York City, unable to get a flight until Friday morning. And that flight only got me as far as St. Louis! I had to catch a flight to San Diego on Saturday morning.
But I was blessed to be able to use that time to solidify new friendships. I got to spend more time with law and graduate students from Columbia. I got better acquainted with David Blankenhorn, the President of the Institute for American Values, a fine organization that produced the Marriage Index and the Taxpayer Costs of Out of Wedlock Childbearing.
The capstone of the week was that I got to do a panel discussion on Fox News web TV on National Marriage Week, along with Ruth Institute friend, Chuck Stetson. The program was God Talk, and the hostess was Lauren Green, whom I had met at Socrates in the City. This clip from the show (pictured above) illustrates why we need the Ruth Institute. Listen to the other panelist argue with me about “safer sex” and why students should not be abstinent. She can’t stomach the idea of a student-led initiative for sexual integrity and abstinence until marriage. This is what our young people are up against in our universities. Your support of the Ruth Institute helps us to combat the influence of adults like this.
Then, on Feb. 17, I did a debate on same sex marriage for the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, ground zero of the gay rights movement. I believe the only people who agreed with me in the room that night were my debate partner, Kevin Snider from the Pacific Justice Institute, my relatives, and Ruth Institute friend, Jack Etheridge, who came in from Ohio on business and made a point of coming to the debate! We should be getting the audio and visual versions of this debate soon. You won’t want to miss it: you will find the behavior of my opponents to be quite revealing
You, the supporters of the Ruth Institute, have made all this possible. We are standing up for natural marriage, for sexual integrity and for just plain common sense. We are reaching out to students from Columbia to Stanford. They need your help. Please send your most generous contribution today.