Author Archives: William C. Duncan

Voices across the political spectrum question dependency culture

In The New York Times, columnist Nicholas D. Kristof makes an uncomfortable point: This is painful for a liberal to admit, but conservatives have a point when they suggest that America’s safety net can sometimes entangle people in a soul-crushing … Continue reading

Posted in Self-reliance, Welfare | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Support exercise of religious freedom: Shop Hobby Lobby Saturday

For a nation with a yearning for religious freedom at its roots, we are seeing an awful callousness toward exercise of that freedom lately. One of the more recent manifestations of this trend has the Green family, who operate Hobby … Continue reading

Posted in Health Care, Religion | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Lehi Roller Mills and bureaucracy

A great local business in northern Utah County, Lehi Roller Mills, has recently filed for bankruptcy protection. Hopefully the move will allow the company to get back on its feet and remain viable for the sake of the community, employees … Continue reading

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Why the Supreme Court marriage decision is good news

Last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to review two decisions of lower federal courts that had struck down two laws preserving the definition of marriage as the union of a husband and wife. One of the laws was the … Continue reading

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Personal responsibility in public policy

Personal responsibility is a core feature of sound public policy. Policies that try to relieve individuals of personal responsibility are unjust and unwise. Policies that recognize and encourage responsibility are far-sighted and effectual. This point is typically and appropriately made … Continue reading

Posted in Self-reliance | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

What’s the best way to tackle bullying?

The Deseret News recently relayed a wonderful story about a young man and his football teammates who befriended a girl who had been bullied by others. Their efforts made a real difference in her life and the way she was … Continue reading

Posted in Community | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

The intrinsic good of marriage

One of the events in the John Adams Center’s recent Goods of Family conference (a really important event put on by the Center’s director, Ralph Hancock) was a superb lecture by Russell Hittinger of the University of Tulsa. Dr. Hittinger … Continue reading

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Weighing decisions of character against feelings of discomfort

In our continued debates over moral issues, it is not uncommon for politicians, opinion leaders and others to announce that, after agonizing over the issue, they have decided to change positions or announce positions in favor of things like abortion … Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Family | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Freedom to close businesses on Sunday is worth preserving

Living in a community bordering Highland, we see lots of signs for and against local Proposition 6, which would do away with the city’s Sunday closing. The anti-Proposition 6 campaign is in the right. People don’t need to shop on … Continue reading

Posted in Community, Free market | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Spending our children’s inheritance

One of the gems in Edmund Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France is his description of the tradition threatened by the social engineering of the French Revolution as an “entailed inheritance derived to us from our forefathers, and to … Continue reading

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Poverty’s elephant in the room

One core advantage of religious and other private charity over government welfare is that it is more likely to address the elephant in the room in discussions of poverty: marriage and family structure. The Department of Workforce Services report on … Continue reading

Posted in Poverty | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Intergenerational poverty, taxation and the Scrooge response

Earlier this week I spoke at an important conference on intergenerational poverty in Salt Lake City. Karen Crompton of Voices for Utah Children and State Senator Stuart Reid organized the conference and invited my participation as a follow-up to Senator … Continue reading

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Polyamory and willful blindness?

Imagine a scenario where a small child is allowed to play with loaded weapons without meaningful oversight from the parents. Then imagine the parents excuse their behavior by saying that the child had not yet been shot or shot anyone … Continue reading

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Same-sex marriage inevitable? Not so fast

At a Sutherland Institute event in April 2011, Maggie Gallagher noted that victory in a war comes when one side believes it is no longer worth fighting. Thus, one of the most important arguments made by those who want to … Continue reading

Posted in Gay Rights, Marriage | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Defending traditional marriage at UVU ethics week

Utah Valley University’s Center for the Study of Ethics very kindly invited me to give a speech on “The Meaning of Traditional Marriage” on Sept. 18 as part of an Ethics Awareness Week In the speech I tried to explain what … Continue reading

Posted in Marriage | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment