• Rabbi of Strasbourg inspects vandalized cemetery. Cover photo for Modern Political Dialogue Has Broken Down.
    Culture and Society,  Politics,  Quick Read

    The Breakdown of Modern Political Dialogue

    When people begin to assume the worst of any given outgroup – the rate of which is increasing between today’s political tribes – that group becomes subject to attacks by the ingroup. Its members are often perceived as vile or sub-human. This designation can be used to justify even the most horrific acts against them. It is the catalyst which turns passionate hate to violent action. And it has.

  • Culture and Society,  Long-form,  Politics,  Psychology

    The Humanity of the NPC Meme

    The great irony of the NPC meme is that it is surprisingly human. At its core, it describes the words and actions of individuals as the products of their environments. Whether its creators were aware of it or not, they were highlighting an aspect of the human experience which should be considered unanimous, for we are all subject – at least on occasion – to the power of social influence.

  • Cover photo for Social Media and the Virtual Cult
    Culture and Society,  Politics,  Psychology

    Social Media and Virtual Cultism

    It is undeniable that people on social media tend to be a bit more…extreme. Some blame it on the oft-anonymous nature of the internet. Others believe the cult-like extremism to be nothing more than an unrepresentative vocal minority. And others still believe that the most outrageous posts simply garner the most attention. Maybe social media users fall into the same “if it bleeds it leads” trap as the news. All of this is true…in part. But there is something about social media that brings out this behavior in even the most sensible people—something that causes our calm, rational conduct to be replaced by a passionate, irrational, cult-like behavior...