web posted August 9, 1999
Back to the past
It's said that religion, politics and sex should never be discussed at the dinner table but none of those subjects have been verboten in the pages of Enter Stage Right. This magazine has always ventured into any area, regardless of potential controversy, without fear of who it would anger. I've always considered ESR to be a forum for debate on any subject and from any view point.
Almost any view point that is.
ESR, at its simplest level, is devoted to promoting capitalism, individualism and liberty. A look at our manifesto, however, will reveal that we have a few guiding principles in how those things will be promoted. A primary principal is our separation of religion and politics.
"We believe that religion and conservatism do not mix, though we firmly believe and defend the right of a person to believe. Much of Judeo-Christian ethics are diametrically opposed to capitalist activities," it reads in part.
"Further, religious ethics are often opposed to proper self-interest. As well, tradition only serves to institutionalize the status quo in a world that is constantly changing. People are free to believe whatever they want, but those beliefs must be tested in the marketplace of ideas."
As it states, ESR is not opposed to religion or those who believe. Obviously if we didn't it wouldn't square particularly well with our stand on liberty. But ESR isn't a democracy. The on-line magazine was started by me in June 1996 to promote my ideals the way I want them promoted.
Lately, however, we've been printing material which has -- sometimes significantly -- diverged from the way I want those ideals promoted. Specifically, I have allowed unneeded references to religion in some of the pieces, something which has been pointed out to me by several long-time readers. I don't fault the writers themselves who submit pieces with those references since it's my job as editor in chief to either ask for a re-write or remove them myself with the permission of the author. I have allowed those references without argument or comment.
As of this issue I have decided to enforce once again the submission guidelines listed elsewhere in this issue which references our mission statement. From now on I will be strictly editing pieces to remove references to religion which do not serve the central purpose of a piece or simply not accepting those which do not serve the central purpose of this magazine.
This does not mean that ESR will not broach the subject of religion. In the past we have printed stories which tackled subjects like Christianity and capitalism and how the two can coexist and we will do so in the future. There will undoubtedly be critical pieces but there will also be laudatory pieces when it's called for.
I realize this enforcement of ESR policy will likely drive away some readers who have come to ESR in the last few months, attracted by pieces which fit into the religious conservative category, and doubtless I will alienate some of the fine writers who have generously contributed pieces to this magazine. For that I am sorry. I have unintentionally misled you by printing essays which are not the main focus of this magazine.
My hope, however, is that none of you leave. I hope you stay and continue reading (and writing) what I believe is thoughtful commentary on the issues of the day albeit from a secular perspective. It's what ESR started out a little over three years ago and it is what will continue to drive it into the future.
Now that I've dealt with religion and politics, let's leave sex for another day.
Thanks for reading,
Meanwhile, back at the ranch...
The cats at WorldNetDaily...
WorldNetDaily featured two ESR pieces during the week of August 9-16. On August 10, Lawrence Henry's Government by talk show, and how to beat it was chosen as their Column du Jour and on August 11 Steve Martinovich's The End of Internet Regulation was featured as an off-site column.
On August 18, WND once again featured a piece, this time by Kevin Avram on taxation.
The links provided some heavy traffic those days and we'd like to thank WND for spotlighting us.
...and The Canadian Conservative Forum really dig us
TCCF made ESR a Site of Excellence for the week of August 8, 1999. A great web site that I've been visiting for a long time now and I would recommend to anyone. Visit it here.
If you have a spare moment, please feel free to fill out the survey ESR has set up. It's your way of giving us some feedback...what you like, what you don't like, what you'd like to see more or less of. So far the response has been positive...am I preaching to the converted?
ESR wants you!
The rate of expansion here is frankly overwhelming and its soon time to begin expanding the staff around here. Interested in getting on our masthead? Want to volunteer writing, editing, whatever? Write us!
Visit our sister site
ESR's Conservative Site of the Day has been up since January 1, spotlighting the best in digital conservatism every weekday. Up to 200 people a day now visit! If you're jonesing for a good conservative website, make sure to visit it at http://www.enterstageright.com/site
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