The Lord Stays in the Picture

Photo: Sue Hoffman

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

As the Supreme Court ponders public displays of the Ten Commandments, it’s worth noting Hollywood’s supporting role in planting the Laws of Moses on the courthouse lawn. When his epic The Ten Commandments was hitting theaters in 1956, Cecil B. DeMille was seized by the notion that moviegoers might benefit from seeing the biblical tablets in 3-D. And so Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner went forth into the land to unveil granite decalogues in North Dakota and Wisconsin, while Paramount donated part of the film’s box-office take to build more. By the mid-’60s, more than 100 monuments were scattered across the country, ready for their constitutional close-up.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend