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May 8, 2021 | Vol. 36, No. 9

The Senate’s wild card

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin is part of a rare buttress against his own party’s efforts to pass radical legislation, but his own voting history makes it hard to predict where he’ll land

Judicial influence

Democrats’ court-packing proposal appears dead in the water. But is it influencing the conservative justices now?

Down and out in Austin

How readily can a blue-collar Texas job seeker find work in a post-pandemic world?

An exodus from Africa

Young, skilled workers are leaving Nigeria as the country battles violence, mass abductions, and economic instability

Unglamorous grace

When sex offenders and other ex-felons meet Christ and repent, they pose a dilemma for churches that want to accept them but also protect their congregation. A few churches are rising to the challenge


BLM’s cancel sandwich

Documentary Paint the Wall Black shows the high cost of resistance to a social justice movement


All laughs, no lectures

Nate Bargatze offers cathartic comedy for the pandemic-weary in his new show, The Greatest Average American

Ruining the joke

A new series starring comedy giants disappoints

Battle of brutes

Box office smash Godzilla vs. Kong is one of the more entertaining films in the series

America, the (not always) beautiful

Nomadland reminds viewers that the freedom to choose the paths we walk may be more beautiful than the paths themselves


A “Jesus Music” pioneer

Children of the Day helped launch a Christian music genre

Highs and lows

Noteworthy new or recent releases

More than a buzzword

More than a buzzword

Preventing abuse in the church starts with understanding the roles of power and deception


Signs of a setting sun

Despair over U.S. party politics and national disunity go all the way back to the Founders

Curious and captivating

Four nonfiction books

Children's Books

A way with words

Four recent picture book biographies

Seeking the silver lining

COVID-19 has been a nightmare, but the pandemic has also resulted in a reduced flu season, expanded telemedicine, and the growth of RNA-based vaccines

Pregnancy care and heart care

The past three decades have seen a shift in the reasons women seek abortions, but pro-life workers still help many choose life

Playing against politics

For schools participating in interscholastic sports, holding Biblical views of sexuality increasingly draws LGBT ire