Teen Pregnancy Rate at Lowest Level Since 1946

Teen Birth Rates Continue to Decline,” InfoPlease, http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0193727.html.

CDC pleased with efforts to reduce teen pregnancies,” by Robert Longley, About.com, 19 November 2004, http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/healthcare/a/teenbirthsdrop.htm.

Ummm…,” by Seth, Clean Cut Kid, 8 April 2005, http://www.cleancutkid.com/2005/04/07/seeing-gaping-wounds-conservatives-offer-band-aids/#comment-822.

I’m posting this as a story because CCK’s comments page is acting up. Maybe this will work?

Seth implies the American teen birth rate is exploding

Also, the American Prospect notes that there were 700,000 to 800,000 abortions per year during the 1950s and 1960s [Seth gives no reference — tdaxp]. And that was before explosions in the number of teen prgnancies, during a period when sex out of wedlock was pretty taboo, etc.

Good thing that isn’t true

The U.S. birth rate among young adolescents aged 10-14 has fallen to the lowest level since 1946 according to a report released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Better news? For older teens, itt’s the lowest. Ever.

Per one thousand 15-19 year old females, there were 42.9 live births. This bests record low years 1980 (53.0) and 1940 (54.1)

Pope John Paul II’s Funeral and Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger’s Homily

“Follow Me,” by Joseph Ratzinger, Funeral of Pope John Paul II, 8 April 2005, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A36518-2005Apr8.html.

Update: Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger is now Pope Benedict XVI. I have also written a short history of all the Pope Benedict. Relatedly, some people (including a saint!) predicted his name.

I got up at 2:30 and I watched until 6:00. The funeral was amazing. It went by very quickly. Cardinal Ratzinger was repeatedly stopped by applause. The Latin and Greek passages and chants added a lot to the experience, as did the gifts from Catholics throughout the world for the eucharist. I spotted Prime Minister Blair, President George W. Bush, President Bill Clinton, President H. W. Bush, President Jacque Chirac, President Victor Yushchenko, President Mohamed Khatami, President Bashar Assad, and many others. The most moving movement was fron Cardinal Raztinger’s homily

Follow me! Together with the command to feed his flock, Christ proclaimed to Peter that he would die a martyr’s death. With those words, which conclude and sum up the dialogue on the love and on the mandate of the universal shepherd, the Lord recalls another dialogue, which took place during the Last Supper. There Jesus had said: “Where I am going, you cannot come.” Peter said to him, “Lord, where are you going?” Jesus replied: “Where I cam going, you cannot follow me now: but you will follow me afterward.” (John 13:33-36). Jesus from the Supper went toward the Cross, went toward his resurrection — he entered into the paschal mystser; and Peter could not follow him. Now — after the resurrection — comes the time, comes this “afterward.” By shepherding the flock of Christ, Peter enters into the paschal mystery, he goes toward the cross and the resurrection. The Lord says this in these words: “‘….when you were younger, you used to fasten your own belt and to go wherever you wished. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten a belt around you and take you where you do not wish to go; (John 21:18) In the first years of his pontificate, still young and full of energy, the Holy Father went to very ends of the earth, guided by Christ. But afterward, he increasingly entered into the communion of Christ’s sufferings; increasingly he understood the truth of the words: “Someone else will fasten a belt around you.” And in the very communion with the suffering Lord, tirelessly and with renewed intensity, he proclaimed the Gospel, the mystery of that love which goes to the end (John 13:1).

Juan’s Cole’s Confused Nationography

“A Computer Model of National Behavior,” by Dan tdaxp, University of South Dakota I.D. Weeks Library, 20 November 2004, Chapter I.

New York Times Supports McCarthyite Witch Hunt,” by Juan Cole, Informed Consent, 8 April 2005, http://www.juancole.com/2005/04/new-york-times-supports-mccarthyite.html.

After canceling his New York Times subscription, Dr. Cole stumbles very, very close to my graduate research

Historians are unkind to nationalism of any sort. Nineteenth century romantic nationalism of the Zionist sort posits eternal “peoples” through history, who have a blood relationship (i.e. are a “race”) and who have a mystical relationship with some particular territory. The Germans, who were very good at this game, called it “blood and soil.” Nationalism casts about for some ancient exemplar of the “nation” to glorify as a predecessor to the modern nation. (Since nations actually did not exist in the modern sense before the late 1700s, the relationship is fictive. To explain what happened between ancient glory and modern nationalism, nationalists often say that the “nation” “fell asleep” or “went into centuries of decline. My colleague Ron Suny calls this the “sleeping beauty” theory of nationalism.)

Juan informed us that 19th century romantics defined a nation as a group of people of the same race and land. Presumably, modern definitions of “nation” exclude the race part. I defined it as

A nation is collection of people that share a language, culture, and ethnicity. “French,” “German,” and “Occidental” are nations in western Europe.

Unless Cole means something entirely different (like a “state”), this is the “modern sense” of the word nation. While nations do evolve, nations did not somehow magically appear — they have existed for centuries. Perhaps Cole means that nationalism did not exist before the late 1700s — but that’s entirely different. “Nationalism” is a category of political beliefs — “nation” refers to a collection of people who may or may not be nationalistic.

Update: More on nations and nation-states, for Slate readers.