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Posts tagged ‘First Amendment’

Liberal Supreme Court Justice Blocks Jan. 6 Committee


 By Jack Davis  October 27, 2022

Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/liberal-supreme-court-justice-blocks-jan-6-committee/

Efforts by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incursion to examine phone records of the Arizona Republican Party chairwoman have been stymied by a member of the U.S. Supreme Court’s liberal wing.

Justice Elena Kagan on Wednesday temporarily blocked the panel from accessing the phone records of Dr. Kelli Ward and her husband, Mark Ward, according to The Hill.

Kagan’s order was terse, saying, “Upon consideration of the application of counsel for the applicants, it is ordered that the October 22, 2022 order of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, case No. 22-16473, is hereby stayed pending further order of the undersigned or of the Court.

“Likewise, respondent T-Mobile USA, Inc. is temporarily enjoined from releasing the records requested by the House Select Committee pending further order of the undersigned or of the Court.

“It is further ordered that a response to the application be filed on or before Friday, October 28, 2022, by 5 p.m. (EDT).”

Kagan was involved because she is the justice assigned to handle emergency requests from Arizona.

The Wards had sued to block access to their phone records. After losing their case at the district court level, they appealed, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit voted 2-1 to deny their bid to protect their records, according to CNN.

That prompted the emergency appeal to Kagan. “This is an unprecedented case with profound precedential implications for future congressional investigations and political associational rights under the First Amendment,” the Wards said in the appeal.

“In a first-of-its-kind situation, a select committee of the United States Congress, dominated by one political party, has subpoenaed the personal telephone and text message records of a state chair of the rival political party relating to one of the most contentious political events in American history—the 2020 election and the Capitol riot of January 6, 2021.”

The appeal painted the case as potentially setting a dire precedent.

“If Dr. Ward’s telephone and text message records are disclosed, congressional investigators are going to contact every person who communicated with her during and immediately after the tumult of the 2020 election. That is not speculation, it is a certainty. There is no other reason for the Committee to seek this information,” the Wards’ filing said.

“There can be no greater chill on public participation in partisan politics than a call, visit, or subpoena, from federal investigators,” they wrote.

The appellate panel ruled against the Wards, saying the federal subpoena “is substantially related to the important government interest in investigating the causes of the January 6 attack and protecting future elections from similar threats.”

“The investigation, after all, is not about Ward’s politics; it is about her involvement in the events leading up to the January 6 attack, and it seeks to uncover those with whom she communicated in connection with those events,” Judges Barry Silverman and Eric Miller wrote in the majority opinion. “That some of the people with whom Ward communicated may be members of a political party does not establish that the subpoena is likely to reveal ‘sensitive information about [the party’s] members and supporters.’”

The two judges who formed the majority castigated the activities of the Wards, who were electors pledged to former President Donald Trump.

“Ward participated in a scheme to send spurious electoral votes to Congress, a scheme that the committee describes as ‘a key part’ of the ‘effort to overturn the election’ that culminated on Jan. 6,” the opinion said.

In her dissent, Judge Sandra Ikuta said the Wards have valid constitutional rights that were insufficiently considered.

“The communications at issue here between members of a political party about an election implicate a core associational right protected by the First Amendment,” Ikuta wrote.

“Regardless of Ward’s position regarding the 2020 election, her right to engage in discussions with her political associates remains entitled to First Amendment protection against the government’s compelled disclosure of her political affiliations,” the judge said. “We must be vigilant to protect First Amendment rights — even when raised by an individual alleged to have engaged in a nefarious ‘scheme.’”

Jack Davis

Contributor

Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.

EXCLUSIVE: Jan. 6 Committee Is Using Innocent Americans’ Assertion of Their Constitutional Rights as Proof of Guilt


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | JULY 12, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/07/12/exclusive-jan-6-committee-is-using-innocent-americans-assertion-of-their-constitutional-rights-as-proof-of-guilt/

Jan. 6 committee segment with Jamie Raskin on MSNBC

Implying guilt based on a witness asserting his rights ‘is a McCarthy-esque tactic that offends the Constitution and is unworthy of the United States Congress.’

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The Jan. 6 Committee is abusing its power by asking inappropriate questions about their fellow Americans’ beliefs and associates, and publicly portraying witnesses who exercise their Fifth Amendment rights as guilty — all to put on a show trial.

Later on, Tuesday, the Jan. 6 Committee will hold yet another public hearing, this one purportedly to focus “on the role of extremists” in the attack on the Capitol. While the precise script for the afternoon’s proceedings remains unknown, last week Democrat Rep. Jamie Raskin previewed the committee’s plans, telling The New York Times that when public hearings resumed in July, “he intends to lead a presentation that will focus on the roles far-right groups like the Proud Boys, the Oath Keepers and 1st Amendment Praetorian played in the Capitol attack.” According to the Times, “Mr. Raskin has also promised to explore the connections between those groups and the people in Mr. Trump’s orbit.”

Recycling the Fifth Amendment Tactic

An attorney for 1st Amendment Praetorian, or 1AP, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting free speech, spoke exclusively with The Federalist about the committee’s questioning of 1AP, the group’s founder, and another member of the nonprofit, all of whom she represents. From the framing of the questions posed to her clients, Leslie McAdoo Gordon was left with the firm impression that the Jan. 6 Committee merely wanted video capturing her clients declining to answer the questions for the purpose of impugning their character during the televised hearings.

“The committee knew before the depositions that my clients would be asserting their First and Fifth Amendment rights, and also would not answer any questions because the depositions were being held in violation of the rules established by the House,” McAdoo Gordon told The Federalist. So, shortly after the hearing began and the 1AP witnesses made clear they would not answer any questions, the staffers moved to general topic areas and would ask a few prepared questions, then the committee representative would note that he had more questions on the topic and inquire whether if he asked those questions, the witnesses intended to assert the same objections.

“My clients would respond ‘yes’ to that question, so then the committee would move forward with the next topic,” McAdoo Gordon said. “But after covering various topics, the committee staffer at the end volleyed a litany of individual questions to my clients, forcing them to respond to each question with ‘Rules, First, and Fifth,’ the shorthand we had agreed to with the committee to convey their objections to questions posed.”

Given that the committee had broadcast video of Michael Flynn asserting his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in an earlier hearing, McAdoo Gordon said she wouldn’t be surprised if Tuesday’s hearings include clips of her clients refusing to answer the committee’s questions.

In fact, she said as much to the committee in a letter last week. After calling the lawmakers out for implying to the public that Flynn was guilty of some crime because he asserted his Fifth Amendment rights, McAdoo Gordon wrote that implying guilt based on a witness asserting his rights, “is a McCarthy-esque tactic that offends the Constitution and is unworthy of the United States Congress.” The attorney added that she is “forced to anticipate that the Committee will use the same totalitarian tactic to improperly smear 1AP.”

The irony is that McAdoo Gordon was working with the committee to arrange for her clients to testify voluntarily, within the bounds of the First Amendment, until the committee concocted what she has called a “cockamamie” criminal conspiracy theory. The committee argued in litigation with former Trump attorney John Eastman “that President Trump, Dr. Eastman, and others conspired to defraud the United States by disrupting the electoral count,” supposedly in violation of Section 371 of the federal criminal code, which makes it a crime to “conspire to defraud” the United States. The committee’s pushing of what she called a “preposterous” legal theory left McAdoo Gordon “with no option but to recommend that my clients assert their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.”

McAdoo Gordon told The Federalist that during her clients’ depositions, the committee asked a series of questions that she likely would have allowed her clients to answer if the meeting had been on a voluntary basis. Putting aside the question of whether the committee was properly constituted, the 1AP’s attorney noted Congress had a legitimate interest in investigating the riots and violence at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

“What 1AP did, or more accurately put, didn’t do, on Jan. 6 was relevant to the committee’s investigation into the riot and the violence at the Capitol, and I was working to arrange for my clients to voluntarily provide the committee with that information,” McAdoo Gordon said. Likewise, the committee had questions about a couple tweets my clients sent on the sixth, and again, such questions were relevant to the Jan. 6 investigation. “

“But once the committee advanced the absurd Section 371 criminal conspiracy theory, I could no longer recommend my clients speak with the committee,” the attorney explained. McAdoo Gordon did respond to the committee on behalf of her clients, however, after Raskin “falsely described 1AP as a ‘far right’ group with a ‘role’ in the ‘Capitol attack’” in his interview with the Times. “All of those points are false and defamatory,” she told the committee. “1AP is a mainstream, non-partisan group with no role whatsoever in the attack on the Capitol.”

Violating the First Amendment

It isn’t just the Fifth Amendment the committee has been shredding, however. “Even if my clients did not assert the Fifth Amendment, I would have still objected to several questions on First Amendment grounds,” McAdoo Gordon added. While some questions related to Jan. 6 were relevant, the majority of the questions posed to 1AP representatives were none of Congress’s business, McAdoo Gordon stressed. And even the process reveals the warped authoritarianism of the committee, the attorney added.

“At the beginning of the depositions, the congressional staff sought confirmation that we were not recording the proceedings in any way, while they proceeded to video record the questioning,” McAdoo Gordon said. She then noted that while witnesses called before a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C., can obtain a transcript of their testimony, the Jan. 6 Committee refuses to allow those they target to obtain transcripts of their subpoenaed testimony.

The committee’s hiding of the transcripts serves to cover their lies and to control the narrative of the show trial, but it also allows the Jan. 6 Committee to hide the wildly inappropriate questions it posed to the witnesses.

“Do you believe in QAnon?” “Do you believe that Joe Biden is the legitimately elected president of the United States?” “What’s your understanding of what happened on 1/6?”

“A Committee of the United States Congress actually asked my clients those questions,” McAdoo Gordon told The Federalist in an exclusive weekend interview.

“Before the deposition, I assured my clients that their political and personal beliefs would not be probed,” the D.C. attorney explained. “While I knew from the subpoenas the Jan. 6 Committee intended to seek constitutionally protected information concerning other 1AP members, my jaw just kept dropping further when they started to question my clients on what they thought and believed.”

The committee also asked Robert Lewis, who is a retired United States Army Green Beret and recipient of the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart, and Philip Luelsdorff, a former U.S. Army Ranger, to describe 1AP activities. For whom and for what purpose did they provide volunteer services? Did they provide security? Surveillance? Assistance with legal activities? What training did they provide? And how were they able to afford to provide the training and volunteer services? Where did the money come from? Who made donations? What bank accounts were used? Did the organization accept cryptocurrency?

Again, none of those questions concerned the events of Jan. 6. Rather, the committee focused on events long before the Jan. 6 events at the Capitol. For instance, it asked whether 1AP provided security for polling places. Other questions concerned 1AP’s security work at a Nov. 14 rally and a Dec. 12 rally.

In essence, the committee is seeking information about 1AP’s members, financial status, donors, and activities. None of that is relevant to the Jan. 6 riots, and all of it is off-limits to the government, the lawyer said. “The Committee had no business asking those questions, so my clients weren’t about to answer them in violation of their First Amendment rights.”

“The Committee had cited as ‘evidence’ against my clients that they obtained a permit for a demonstration the day before the riot. How is obtaining a permit to hold a peaceful protest evidence of a role in a riot the next day? It isn’t,” McAdoo Gordon said. The committee also sought to quiz Lewis and Luelsdorff on their relationship with the Trump family, the White House, the campaign, and numerous specific individuals such as Sidney Powell and Michael Flynn. The staff further asked whether they had been in contact with any of the defense attorneys representing any of the Jan. 6 defendants.

“The government should not be asking a civic organization, which is what 1AP is, about its relationships, in general, with other people, much less about the organization’s donors or lawyers with whom they spoke,” McAdoo Gordon stressed.

Assuming Guilt with Dishonest Framing

Beyond asking inappropriate questions that implicated 1AP’s First Amendment rights, the committee framed several questions in the “do you still beat your wife” format. Before the election, did they provide security “in order to overturn the election”? “Have you engaged in any activities to overturn the certified election results?” “Have you engaged in any activities to reinstall Donald Trump as president of the United States since Jan. 20, 2021?” These questions all presuppose that the “election results” were sought to be “overturned,” as opposed to challenged.

But of course, the Jan. 6 Committee’s focus on the few unfounded claims of election fraud, as opposed to the numerous violations of state election law and evidence of illegal voting — issues Trump and his legal team pursued — aids in the narrative that the protesters wanted to “install” Trump or overturn the election, as opposed to protest election irregularities. And by using a guilt-by-association strategy, the committee paints not just 1AP and its volunteers as complicit in the violence at the Capitol, but every American who attended the rallies and peacefully protested the disastrous 2020 election.

“The committee might be using nicer language, but its questioning is Stalinist in nature nonetheless,” McAdoo Gordon said.

The 1AP lawyer is correct. But because the corrupt media is effectively serving as a state-run press for its preferred politicians, most of America will be oblivious to that fact when the hearings resume later today.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

Barr: Public Schools Are Now So Hostile to Christians, They’re Unconstitutional


A MUST READ AND SHARE -Jerry Broussard

REPORTED BY: JOY PULLMANN | JUNE 27, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/06/27/barr-public-schools-are-now-so-hostile-to-christians-theyre-unconstitutional/

William Barr

Religious devotion, the keystone of ordered liberty in the West, has been under systematic assault by anti-religious forces Barr called an ‘atheocracy.’

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The West is facing its deepest civilizational crisis since Jesus Christ resurrected, and addressing the crisis requires removing militant secularists’ monopoly on education, former U.S. attorney general William Barr told a packed Christian conference in Chicago, Ill. on Saturday.

“We are going through a fateful crisis in western civilization. This is the deepest crisis we’ve faced in my mind since Christ,” Barr said. “That’s because our whole civilization is based on the Judeo-Christian tradition and that tradition is under sustained attack by increasingly militant secular forces.”

In a reprise of a 2019 speech at Notre Dame University that met massive corporate media backlash, Barr told the audience U.S. public schools have become hostile to traditional religion while wresting control of American children’s upbringing from their parents. This is a threat to the entire Western order, Barr said, because the unique American system of self-government cannot exist without a citizenry that is committed to traditional religion.

That’s because there are only two ways to restrain people from following disordered passions, Barr said: internal restraints, which are largely provided by one’s beliefs; and external restraints, which are typically provided by government. So, in order to have a limited government, Barr noted in an explicit echo of the American Founders, citizens must practice self-restraint. Such self-restraint is primarily developed through religious devotion, he said. But religious observance, the keystone of ordered liberty in the West, has been under systematic assault by anti-religious forces Barr called an “atheocracy,” his amalgam of the words “atheist theocracy.” These anti-religious forces now control the minds of American kids due to their monopoly on U.S. education institutions.

“The threat today is not that religious people are about to establish a theocracy in the United States, it is that militant secularists are trying to establish an atheocracy,” Barr said. Barr also spoke to The Federalist about the asymmetric justice being carried out under Joe Biden by the agency he has led twice, the U.S. Department of Justice.

In a 2021 interview with the legal nonprofit Alliance Defending Freedom, Barr said anti-religion leftists have effectively turned public schools into “secular-progressive madrassas.” In his Chicago speech on Saturday, the nation’s former top lawyer told the audience this state of affairs is likely a violation of the Constitution’s ban on government establishment of one religion over others, as well as a violation of the Free Exercise Clause that forbids the government from interfering with Americans’ religious obligations.

“What we’re living through is not a situation where religion is intruding into the government’s rightful arena, it’s exactly the opposite: It’s that government and politics is usurping the role of religion,” Barr said.

Barr told the sold-out Chicago audience at the 2022 conference of the Christian radio show “Issues, Etc.” that American politics now aligns with religious beliefs. The dichotomy in American life is no longer about prudential issues but religious ones: whether one acknowledges an objective, external, unchanging reality ordered by a transcendent deity or whether one insists the material world is all there is, which makes one’s god the self.

This anti-God materialism now maps onto and fuels political leftism, Barr said:

When a purely materialist worldview takes hold in society, it’s drawn to a messianic utopianism. Its adherents become enthralled with the idea that the meaning of life, what gives them purpose and meaning, is to be found in the quest for a perfect earthly society. The manipulation of the material world to achieve some form of nirvana here on earth. And the means used is achieving political power.

The main obstacle to this earthly paradise is the existing structure, conventions and superstitions like religion. Any obstacle to our earthly paradise has to be torn down.

These ideas are represented by the progressive movement in the United States. It basically is an ersatz religion that gives them a sort of truncated version of the place filled by religion in people’s lives. It also explains the bitterness in our politics today. Because once you adopt this view, then your political opponents aren’t just disagreeing with you, they’re evil. They are standing in the way of the salvation of mankind.

…Another part of this revolutionary era and the consequences we have been witnessing over the last couple of hundred years is a worldview that boils questions of morality solely down to an individual’s internal feelings. And their interior sense of pleasure and satisfaction. That’s how we gauge acts, whether people feel internally satisfied. And anything that advances that feeling is good, and anything that constrains or restricts that feeling is bad. This is a fundamental change in the worldview of the West.

Because the U.S. Supreme Court and other American political institutions have turned public schools from essentially Christian schools into essentially anti-Christian schools, Barr said, the U.S. school system has been erasing the faith required to sustain limited government. Multiple studies provide evidence this is true.

Banning Christianity from education created a moral vacuum that has ultimately been filled badly with political leftism. This has not only increasingly turned younger American generations against their own faith, families, and country, it has turned public schools into indoctrination camps.

“Personal and civic moral systems don’t just sort of hover in the air,” Barr explained. “They have to rest on an explanatory foundation, a metaphysical foundation. When people tell you to do something, you ask ‘Why?’ Why is it necessary to be good and what is it that consists of being good? So, the extent to which an education seeks to contribute to a student’s moral formation, it necessarily invades the space of religion when explaining what the moral values are and how they should be inherited.”

Thanks to the current Supreme Court’s adherence to the original Constitution as written, Barr said he thinks this is an opportune moment for both court and legislative work to address this existential national crisis.

“Public education was established as a melting pot that would establish a common American identity. How are the public schools doing on that front?” Barr asked, at which the audience burst into laughter. He continued: “The curriculum is now attacking the fundamental legitimacy of our form of government and our founding documents. That’s no way to bring us together as a nation.”

The most direct way to resolve this constitutional and existential crisis in American education is to end the government monopoly over the provision of education, Barr said, with full school choice. (The form of school choice that offers the fewest opportunities for hostile bureaucrats to interfere with parent choices, by the way, is education savings accounts.)

“The variety of American beliefs now makes a monopoly on education untenable,” Barr said. “You can’t finesse it anymore. You can’t pretend what’s being taught in schools is compatible with traditional religion, nor can you pretend schools are neutral anymore.”

Because anti-religious public schools hold a monopoly on public education funds, Barr noted, parents are forced to fight mostly ineffectively over what public schools teach, such as transgender ideology to kindergarteners and anti-white racism. Allowing parents to take their children’s public education dollars to institutions that match their beliefs will end such culture wars, he said, as well as help families more effectively pass their republic-sustaining faith on to their children.

This alone can’t solve the entire existential crisis of the West, Barr conceded: “It’s not a panacea, but I cannot see a way out for us and the way for Christian citizens to live in peace in this republic until we address the educational system.”


Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Sign up here to get early access to her next ebook, “101 Strategies For Living Well Amid Inflation.” Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. In 2013-14 she won a Robert Novak journalism fellowship for in-depth reporting on Common Core national education mandates. Joy is a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

The Only Way to Fight Disinformation Is to Fight Political Censorship


REPORTED BY: STELLA MORABITO | APRIL 18, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/04/18/the-only-way-to-fight-disinformation-is-to-fight-political-censorship/

Chicago Disinformation Conference

The surest way to kill a democracy is to practice political censorship under the guise of protecting society from disinformation.

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If outfits like the Aspen Institute’s Commission on Information Disorder,” along with Big Tech’s faceless “fact-checkers,” ever get a total monopoly on dictating reality, the result will be a 24/7 mix of falsehoods with the occasional limited hangout to cover up their lies. The icing on this fake cake is the use of conferences about disinformation, such as the recent stunt at the University of Chicago that served as cover for justifying political censorship. There former President Obama presented the perfect picture of psychological projection: a panel of propagandists accusing others of wrongthink.

The Atlantic’s Anne Applebaum, for example, sought to censor the reality of the Hunter Biden laptop scandal by announcing she didn’t find it “interesting.” See how that works? Truth depends upon how our elites personally feel about what should be true. But it gets much worse, because political censorship creates deep dysfunction in society. In fact, the surest way to kill a democracy is to practice political censorship under the guise of protecting society from disinformation.

Censorship causes disinformation. It’s the grandaddy of disinformation, not a solution to it. The sooner everyone recognizes this obvious fact, the better off we’ll be. Whenever a self-anointed elite sets up a Ministry of Truth, the link between censorship and disinformation becomes clear. Before long, they invent reality and punish anyone who expresses a different viewpoint.

So, it’s no small irony that those who claim to be protecting “democracy” from disinformation are the biggest promoters of disinformation and greatest destroyers of real democracy. Their dependence on censorship obstructs the circulation of facts. It prevents any worthwhile exchange of ideas.

Unchecked Censorship Isolates People

Consider what happens if a society is only permitted one propagandistic narrative while all other ideas and information are silenced. People start self-censoring to avoid social rejection. The result is a form of imposed mental isolation. Severely isolated people tend to lose touch with reality. The resulting conformity also perpetuates the censorship. This is unnatural and dangerous because human beings depend on others to verify what’s real. People weren’t able to verify reality in Nazi Germany, during Joseph Stalin’s Reign of Terror, or during Mao Zedong’s brutal Cultural Revolution. All were societies in the grip of mass hysteria because of ruthless censorship to protect a narrative.

As psychiatrist Joost Meerloo noted in his book “The Rape of the Mind,” no matter how well-meaning political censorship might be, it creates dangerous conformity of thought: “the presence of minority ideas, acceptable or not, is one of the ways in which we protect ourselves against the creeping growth of conformist majority thinking.”

The only way we can strengthen ourselves against such contagion is through real freedom of speech that allows fully open discussion and debate. However, if we’re confined by Big Tech to a relentless echo chamber and punished for expressing different thoughts, we’ll just keep getting more and more disinformation. In fact, we are now drowning in the distortions produced by “fact-checkers.” Take, for example, narratives that promote the gender confusion and sexualization of children. Public school teachers routinely post TikTok videos of themselves spewing forth their gender confusion. And if someone calls out Disney for its open grooming of children, Twitter suspends them.

If we never push back against such absurdities, we ultimately end up in a state of mass delusion, each of us a cell in a deluded hive mind, obedient to commands about what to say, how to act, and what to think. To get an idea of what that looks like in a population, check out this clip from North Korea:

Censorship-Invoked Social Contagion Is Real

One of the most telling incidents of censorship over the past year was YouTube and Twitter’s take-down of virologist and vaccine inventor Dr. Robert Malone, claiming he was “spreading misinformation”—i.e., spreading a second opinion—about Covid vaccines and treatments. But big tech saw an even bigger threat in Malone’s discussion of Mattias Desmet’s study of Mass Formation Psychosis (MFP) on Joe Rogan’s popular podcast. This is a big reason Spotify was under pressure to de-platform Rogan entirely. Open discussion of such things would erode the illusions big media and big tech so doggedly prop up.

Malone explained how a propaganda-saturated population can end up in a state of mass hypnosis that renders people incapable of seeing reality. He described Desmet’s theory about how social isolation, a high level of discontent, and a strong sense of free-floating anxiety are keys to the development of this psychosis.

The anxiety is so painful that it causes people to cling, trancelike, to any narrative that seems to offer stability. Once all other views are censored, people become so invested in the narrative that they cannot consider any alternative views. They will even mob anyone who endangers the narrative. This phenomenon was prevalent in the German population under Nazism. Their obedience to the propaganda rendered them incapable of understanding any opposing narrative.

Mass psychosis should not sound farfetched. There’s nothing new about it. Hundreds of instances of mass hysteria are documented. In the 19th century, Scottish journalist Charles MacKay wrote up a whole catalog of them. In 2015 medical sociologist Robert Bartholomew co-authored a compendium of popular delusions or “mass sociogenic illness.”

Most past incidents of mass hysteria have been confined to geographic regions, such as the witch trials in 17th century Salem, Massachusetts. But with the internet accessible and addictive in the 2020s, the possibility of mass delusion on a global scale is upon us. Censorship—in the name of protecting “democracy” from disinformation—is the key to creating it.

Propagandists Guard Their Illusions Like Magicians

By definition, propaganda aims to psychologically affect people and change their attitudes. So, our social survival depends upon becoming aware of such phenomena. Building self-awareness about our vulnerability to crowd psychology would serve as a sort of psychological vaccine. Of course, elites do not want us even entertaining the possibility that we can be manipulated or vulnerable to social and psychological pressures. Propagandists are illusionists by nature. If their illusion falls apart, then the game is over for them. This is why they depend so heavily on the slur “conspiracy theorist” to distract us from the truth and from their use of censorship to cut us off from other ideas.

The late Nobel laureate Doris Lessing spoke against the dangers of social conformity and censorship in 1986. She noted there was a great body of knowledge that was continuing to be built about the laws of crowd psychology and social contagion. It was odd that we weren’t applying this knowledge to improve our lives. Lessing concluded that no government in the world would willingly help its citizens resist group pressures and learn to think independently. We have to do it ourselves. Fast forward to the twenty-first century, and it sure looks like the keepers of this secret knowledge use it as a means of social control.

No sane person would want to live inside the boxes that the censors who claim to be fighting disinformation are building around us. If we want to escape this Twilight Zone existence, we must destroy that canard and insist on real freedom of speech everywhere.


Stella Morabito is a senior contributor at The Federalist. Her essays have also appeared in the Washington Examiner, American Thinker, Public Discourse, Human Life Review, New Oxford Review. In her previous work as an intelligence analyst, she focused on various aspects of Russian and Soviet politics, including communist media and propaganda. She has also raised three children, served as a public school substitute teacher, and homeschooled for several years as well. She has a B.A. in journalism and international relations from the University of Southern California and a Master’s degree in Russian and Soviet history, also from USC. Follow Stella on Twitter.

Stop Arguing for Religious Liberty and Start Arguing Against Religious Discrimination


COMMENTARY BY: AUGUSTE MEYRAT | MARCH 28, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/28/stop-arguing-for-religious-liberty-and-start-arguing-against-religious-discrimination/

catholic charities

For an increasingly secular populace, actions and policies must be defended on the basis of reason much more than faith.

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In a recent legal settlement, Catholic Charities West Michigan successfully challenged Michigan’s decision to bar state funds to adoption agencies that do not serve same-sex couples. The settlement forced Michigan to reimburse the charity for its legal fees and other costs. Using an argument that has now become familiar to most Americans, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, a lesbian mother of two and former gay rights activist, charged Catholic adoption agencies with discriminating against same-sex couples. In response, the Catholic adoption agencies used the same logic, accusing the Michigan state government of discriminating against Catholics and effectively denying them their religious freedom.

While Christians should celebrate this recent victory, it’s nonetheless sad this appeal had to be made. When gay marriage was legalized in Obergfell v. Hodges, Christians were assured that they could practice their faith and live out their values in peace, but this was almost immediately proven wrong. As the ink of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion was drying, LGBT groups immediately went after Christian bakersfloristsphotographers, popular chicken sandwich chains, and other Christian organizations for their religious beliefs.

Defense Based on Reason not Faith

This war will continue so long as Christians keep using the religious freedom defense. Even though this argument has the best chance of winning in legal courts, it is unconvincing in the court of public opinion. As more Americans drift away from Christianity, they increasingly view this defense for denying service to same-sex couples not as a valid objection, but as a childish copout: “The Christian God doesn’t like gay people.”

Rather, it’s important to establish that most Christian churches are established on natural law (that is, moral laws based on objective truth) as much as the Bible. To be sure, faith and reason both matter enormously, but for an increasingly secular populace, actions and policies must be defended on the basis of reason much more than faith.

This has been the case with abortion, with the pro-life position steadily gaining popular support as it has adopted more reason-based arguments. The pro-life movement has grown because it has argued that unborn babies are people, and therefore abortion is murder. Although the Bible acknowledges this argument, the argument itself isn’t strictly based on the Bible.

Reasons Against Same-Sex Couples Adopting

Similarly, in issues involving marriage and children, Christians need to appeal to reason more than their faith. In the case of same-sex couples adopting, two issues need to be addressed. First, do all couples have a right to adopt a child? Second, do children have a right to a father and mother?

Concerning whether all couples have a right to adopt, the answer is that they do not. As any couple who has gone through the process of adoption understands all too well, many screenings and conditions have to be met. Someone from the adoption agency will inspect their home, rifle through their personal information, interview them and others, and then, after so many legal hurdles, possibly allow a child to live with them. Even then, the biological parent may change his or her mind and take back the child.

As painful and expensive as this process is, it is necessary because children are human beings with rights of their own, not objects a couple acquires out of boredom or simply some charitable impulse. Consequently, adoption agencies must discriminate among couples wanting to adopt, only selecting those who meet the criteria of good caretakers.

A Right to a Mother and Father?

This leads to the second issue of whether a child’s rights include having a mother and father, as opposed to two fathers or two mothers. The science on this is mixed, both because it’s a politically charged issue and because it’s a difficult thing to measure. One may say that a loving committed couple is enough, but one may contend that a loving committed heterosexual couple is necessary.

Katy Faust persuasively argues this latter view in her excellent book “Them Before Us.” She explains that men and women represent two distinct and essential supports to a child growing up; fatherhood and motherhood are not interchangeable or dispensable. Furthermore, she argues that a child does best with his or her biological parents in nearly all cases. For Faust, adoption is an alternative that should only be considered in cases of serious abuse or neglect.

Not only does Faust support her argument with a multitude of studies, but she has both a homosexual parent and an adopted child. Even though her situation would suggest that same-sex adoption should be treated the same as any other parental arrangement, her reasoning leads her to think otherwise.

Faust’s example is a good model for all Christians trying to serve their community in accordance with their values. Whatever charitable work they do — whether it is finding homes for orphans or allowing those orphans to be born in the first place — it is done for the person in need, first and foremost. This is not a political or religious issue, but a human one.

It is not a coincidence that this means they are doing God’s will in the process. Contrary to what opponents claim, Christian values are based on objective truth, not blind faith to various Bronze Age prejudices. As such, the goal is not about winning, but about making the world a better place.


Auguste Meyrat is an English teacher in the Dallas area. He holds an MA in humanities and an MEd in educational leadership. He is the senior editor of The Everyman and has written essays for The Federalist, The American Conservative, and The Imaginative Conservative, as well as the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. Follow him on Twitter.

In Its First Year, Biden’s HHS Relentlessly Attacked Christians and Unborn Babies


BY: RACHEL N. MORRISON | MARCH 18, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/18/in-its-first-year-bidens-hhs-relentlessly-attacked-christians-and-unborn-babies/

becerra

March 18 marks one year since pro-abortion radical Xavier Becerra was confirmed as President Joe Biden’s appointee for secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Although both men claim to be faithful Catholics, they have launched unprecedented attacks on people of faith by eliminating vital conscience and religious freedom protections and funneling millions of taxpayer dollars to the abortion industry.

At the HHS Accountability Project at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C., we have been keeping tabs on HHS personnel and policy. The oft-heard maxim “personnel is policy” is no exception for HHS, the largest federal agency by budget. While Becerra was AWOL on the Covid fight, he was outright zealous on culture war issues, leading HHS’s singular focus on pushing pro-abortion and anti-religion policies on the American people.

Here are the top 10 lowlights for year one.

1. Dismantling HHS’s Conscience and Religious Freedom Division

One of Becerra’s early acts as secretary was to strip the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division within the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of its independent ability to investigate violations of conscience and religious freedom laws. The division was created during the Trump administration to guarantee enforcement rather than neglect of laws that protect these fundamental and inalienable rights.

Becerra’s first budget proposal would have effectively eliminated this division as a standalone entity, despite Becerra having promised Congress that “the work [of the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division] will not change.” He, along with OCR political staff (such as political ideologue Laura Durso), refused to even consult with the dedicated career professionals of the division while they methodically removed conscience and religious freedom protections from the American people.

These developments were foreshadowed by transgender activist Dr. Rachel Levine who, prior to being elevated to the number-three position at HHS, proclaimed the division should be “either disbanded or certainly redirected.” 

2. Removing OCR’s First Amendment Enforcement Power

Becerra removed OCR’s authority to enforce conscience and religious projections under the bipartisan Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) and the First Amendment. A leaked memo revealed this move came at the request of Lisa Pino, the Biden-appointed director of OCR. She is tasked with enforcing civil rights protections in health and human services, not finding ways to remove them.

Remember, it was HHS under Obama that went after the Little Sisters of the Poor and lost under RFRA. Now Becerra has removed the only internal entity that would hold HHS accountable to the law.

3. Pushing a Ridiculously ‘Woke’ Budget

The Biden-Becerra HHS budget for fiscal year 2022 removed references to “conscience,” “religion,” and “Conscience and Religious Freedom Division.” But don’t worry, the new budget replaces references to these constitutional and statutory rights HHS is responsible for enforcing with a bunch of woke terms like “equity” — the Biden administration’s preferred priority.

4. Backing Forcing Nuns to Pay for Abortion

While Becerra was attorney general of California before becoming HHS secretary, OCR issued two notices of violation against Becerra and his state for violating federal conscience protections by forcing nuns (and others) to provide insurance coverage of abortion. Apart from the clear conflict of interest with Becerra leading the very office that previously found him in violation of the law, OCR under Becerra “reassessed” the conscience violations, magically finding there were none.

5. Abandoning Nurse Illegally Forced to Participate in Abortion

In 2019, OCR found a hospital had violated a nurse’s conscience rights by forcing her to participate in an abortion over her known conscience objection. When the hospital refused to change its policies to comply with the law, the federal government sued the hospital in federal court.

But on Becerra’s watch and despite his many promises to continue enforcing federal conscience laws, the Biden administration quietly dismissed the case without any settlement, agreement, or compensation for the nurse. Because federal conscience protection laws do not provide a private right of action, she cannot sue on her own and the violating hospital has been let off with impunity.

6. Relentlessly Pushing Abortion With Federal Resources

In response to Texas’ law protecting unborn children with beating hearts from abortion, the Biden-Becerra HHS announced, despite prohibitions on federal funds going to abortion, ways the department could “bolster access to safe and legal abortions in Texas.” HHS is awarding $10 million in additional funding to increase access to abortifacients for those affected by the Texas law.

OCR issued pro-abortion guidance explaining how a federal conscience protection law can protect abortion providers and patients seeking abortions. If HHS’s actions weren’t clear enough, Becerra stated, “We are telling doctors and others involved in the provision of abortion care, that we have your back.” Becerra and OCR clearly don’t want to enforce the law for those who do not want to participate in abortion.

7. Directly Funding Big Abortion

Becerra, who has oddly and repeatedly refused to acknowledge that partial-birth abortion is illegal, led HHS’s charge to fund Big Abortion. In 2021, Planned Parenthood received more than $5.4 million in taxpayer funds from HHS, an amount that is sure to increase over the next three years.

In an effort to further fund Planned Parenthood, the Biden-Becerra HHS ignored democratic norms to rush through new Title X regulations. Title X is a federal program that provides grants for a range of family planning services, but per the statute, such services cannot include abortion.

The new regulations, however, remove the requirement of physical and financial separation between Title X projects and abortion services, require abortion counseling and referrals, and remove conscience protections for Title X providers. Planned Parenthood had dropped out of the Title X program under those regulations, forfeiting that funding stream, but under the new regulations the abortion giant is expected to receive significant Title X funding.

8. Comingling Insurance Payments for Abortion

Last summer, HHS rushed through new insurance regulations that, contrary to the text of the Affordable Care Act, no longer require separate insurance payments for abortion services, allowing those payments to be comingled with payments for other covered services. Besides violating the law, combined payments create a lack of transparency and accountability. Consumers with conscience objections to abortion will no longer be on notice that their insurance plan covers abortion or that they are subsidizing abortions, including for any adult children on their plan.

9. Rescinding Faith-Based Waivers

Prompting a congressional inquiry, the Biden-Becerra HHS gratuitously rescinded waivers previously issued to faith-based adoption and foster care agencies in MichiganSouth Carolina, and Texas that allowed the agencies to qualify for HHS grants while operating in accordance with their deeply held religious beliefs. In the press release announcing the rescission, Becerra unironically stated: “At HHS, we treat any violation of civil rights or religious freedoms seriously.”

Please. This action comes on the heels of a unanimous ruling by the Supreme Court affirming the constitutional right of foster-care agencies to act according to their religious beliefs on human sexuality in certifying foster parents.  

10. Issuing Totalitarian Anti-Conscience Rules

HHS announced its new interpretation and enforcement of Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act that would force health-care professionals to perform gender transition surgeries and provide minors with harmful and sterilizing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones. A new rule codifying this interpretation is anticipated in April and would likely not exempt providers with medical or conscience objections. HHS is also planning to rescind conscience regulations that protect health-care professionals from being forced to assist with abortions and protect others from having to pay for abortions.


Rachel N. Morrison is an attorney and fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, where she works on EPPC’s HHS Accountability Project.

Democrats’ Massive Entitlement Plans Include Banning Christians From Government Childcare


Reported By Joy Pullmann | DECEMBER 13, 2021

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2021/12/13/democrats-massive-entitlement-plans-include-banning-christians-from-government-childcare/

Democrats’ current proposed $3.5 trillion welfare expansion would effectively ban faithful Christians from profiting from federal subsidies for separating infants and toddlers from their families. The current text of Democrats’ massive “Build Back Better” entitlement bill contains provisions that would require religious child-care providers to disavow longstanding theology about sex in order to receive federal child-care funds under a massive new early childhood program.

“The Democrats went out of their way to make sure and prohibit religious care providers from receiving any of these funds, and unanimously rejected an amendment to allow all child-care providers to be eligible for grants, including religious providers,” said Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Indiana, the ranking member on the House’s subcommittee on Worker and Family Support.

Democrats’ legislation would create a new federally controlled child-care entitlement available to the majority of families in the nation. The legislation authorizes up to $20 billion in the program’s first year, $30 billion in its second, $40 billion in its third, and an unlimited amount after that. The estimated cost of this program over the next ten years is $400 billion.

“Making faith-based providers of child-care and pre-kindergarten into recipients of federal financial assistance triggers federal compliance obligations and non-discrimination provisions,” note the leaders of several religious organizations in an opposition letter to Senate Democrats last week.

This means potentially forcing religious organizations to deny all theology that acknowledges basic truths about human biology and reproduction. Given the state of federal “nondiscrimination” law, this could include forcing religious organizations to allow males into female bathrooms, hire transgender babysitters, and teach small children that men can turn themselves into women and that theologically condemned sex acts are in fact morally good.

Just one-third of American children younger than five are placed in center-based care, according to federal statistics. Sixty-three percent of American kids ages five and younger are cared for by family, and 11 percent by a babysitter or nanny. Most American kids ages 0 to 5 who do have regular childcare are away from their parents only part-time. Among the minority of American families who enroll young children in full-time care, 53 percent currently choose a religious facility, according to a January 2021 survey of parents from the Bipartisan Policy Center. Family care was parents’ top preference for their children, with religious-based care the second-most preferred option in the BPC poll.

Democrats’ bill would also likely dramatically increase the costs of childcare by increasing the licensing requirements for people the government pays to babysit tiny children. Most child care workers have low education levels, but states usually don’t raise their licensing requirements because that would reduce the availability of government-controlled child care.

Numerous studies have found that the quality of language and interaction available to a child in infancy and early childhood is extremely important to that child’s intellectual and social development. Studies have also found that frequent one-on-one interaction between a small child and his parents benefits early language development even if the child’s parents are poorly educated. This effect disappears, however, if that poorly educated mother is employed to care for many tiny children at once instead of one of her own to whom she can fully dedicate her attention and conversation time.

Research also resoundingly finds that living with married parents provides far bigger positive benefits to children for their entire lives than does attending an early childhood program.

Large early childhood programs are of notoriously poor quality. The major existing such program, Head Start, has failed to improve attendees’ education and life prospects in all the quality research done on the program that has spent some $250 billion from taxpayers since it began in 1965. In fact, federal research has found that children who participated in Head Start later learned less in math and behaved worse than peers who didn’t participate.

The research that shows any long-term benefit to children of attending early childhood programs derives such results from small-scale, boutique programs that employed teachers and support staff such as doctors who were much better educated than the typical daycare or preschool employee.

Research also shows mass programs that separate small children from their parents decrease children’s intellectual abilities and increase their aggression, risky behavior, and later likelihood of committing crimes. They also tend to erode parenting skills. The more time a small child spends away from his mother, the worse such negative effects tend to get.

“The amount of hours spent in day care each week during the first four years of life was the key child care predictor of behavioral problems,” writes social scientist Dr. Jenet Erickson in a review of several such studies. “In fact, the statistical effect size of the relationship between day care hours and caregiver reports of behavioral problems at age four and a half was so strong that it was comparable to the effect of poverty. Importantly, these statistical effects did not diminish as children aged.”

High-quality studies found that children who attended Tennessee’s state-run pre-K program had worse behavior and academic outcomes than children who did not. Children who attended Quebec’s universal early childcare program were 22 percent more likely to be convicted of a crime in young adulthood compared to children who did not participate in the program. Children separated from their parents in their youngest years through Quebec’s program also demonstrated greater emotional fragility that lasted into adulthood.

“The left is at war with religion and family-centered things. They think cradle to grave, government knows best,” Walorski said.

Walorski has sponsored legislation that would expand tax-free savings accounts families can use to pay for their own child care, tutoring, enrichment activities such as music lessons and summer camp, and more.

82% of Americans say religious freedom is key to ‘healthy American society’: poll


Reported By Michael Gryboski, Christian Post Reporter | Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/82-see-religious-freedom-as-key-to-healthy-us-society-rasmussen.html/

Religious freedom
Religious freedom supporters hold a rally to praise the Supreme Court’s decision in the Hobby Lobby, contraception coverage requirement case on June 30, 2014, in Chicago, Illinois. Oklahoma-based Hobby Lobby, which operates a chain of arts-and-craft stores, challenged the provision and the high court ruled 5-4 that requiring family-owned corporations to pay for insurance coverage for contraception and abortion-inducing drugs under the Affordable Care Act violated a federal law protecting religious freedom. | Scott Olson/Getty Images

More than four-fifths of surveyed Americans believe that freedom of religion is an important aspect of a “healthy American society,” according to a poll by Rasmussen Reports and Summit Ministries.

In findings announced Tuesday, the report found that 67% of respondents said freedom of religion is “very important to a healthy American society,” while 15% said it was “somewhat important to a healthy American society.”

Some 9% of respondents said they believe freedom of religion was either “not very important” or “not at all important” to a “healthy American society,” while 9% said they were unsure.

Party affiliation only offered slight variance, as 86% of Republican respondents said freedom of religion is very important or somewhat important, while 83% of Independents and 79% of Democrats also responded that it was very or somewhat important.

The poll also found that 50% of Americans believe that churches and faith-based charities should not be required by law to hire people who oppose their religious beliefs, while 20% of Americans say they should be required, and 30% of Americans were not sure.

Summit President Jeff Myers said in a statement included in the announcement that he believed the findings showed “that the American people overwhelmingly support the continued protection of the Constitutional right of freedom of religion.”

“Yet, leaders in Washington, D.C., are aggressively pushing forward on legislative measures such as the mislabeled Equality Act, which specifically strips away religious freedom protections,” stated Myers.

“In an era of hyper-partisanship, freedom of religion retains broad, bi-partisan support among Democrats, Republicans and Independents.”

The poll drew from a sample of 1,000 likely voters in the United States, being conducted June 16-17 and with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.

Earlier this month, the United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling in which they conclude that a Christian foster agency could not be forced to place kids in same-sex households.

Known as Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, the high court ruled city officials were wrong to quit working with Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for refusing on religious grounds to place children with same-sex couples.

“Government fails to act neutrally when it proceeds in a manner intolerant of religious beliefs or restricts practices because of their religious nature,” wrote Chief Justice John Roberts for the court.

“The refusal of Philadelphia to contract with CSS for the provision of foster care services unless it agrees to certify same-sex couples as foster parents cannot survive strict scrutiny, and violates the First Amendment.”  

Follow Michael Gryboski on Twitter or Facebook

Richard D. Land Op-ed: The First Amendment religion clauses: ‘Full-throated’ freedom or ‘mere’ toleration?


Commentary By Richard D. Land, Christian Post Executive Editor| Friday, May 21, 2021

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/first-amendment-on-religion-full-throated-or-mere-toleration.html/

Richard Land
(Photo: The Christian Post/Katherine T. Phan)

Last week I wrote my column on “The First Amendment: Alive and well?” in which I noted the revolutionary impact of the Amendment on religious freedom in particular and on human rights in general. 

The First Amendment has indeed proven itself to be a magnificent legal and political engine driving the cause of soul freedom and freedom of conscience in America first, and subsequently as a shining beacon of light and hope to a suppression-weary world.

This week I want to address the current tension that has arisen among various groups of Americans over what was the Founding Father’s ‘original intent,’ and how should the First Amendment be applied to today’s ever-more ethically and religiously diverse populace.  Columnist Judd Birdsall has conveniently and helpfully divided and labeled the two camps as “First Freedom” and “Article 18,” personified by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (2018-2021) and current Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Pompeo was the most openly evangelical Secretary of State since William Jennings Bryan (1913-1915) in the Woodrow Wilson Administration. Pompeo, as Secretary of State, took virtually unprecedented actions and initiatives to promote religious freedom worldwide. His unprecedented efforts yielded encouraging results with two very well attended ministerial events at the State Department, including one that was hailed as the largest meeting promoting religious freedom ever held at the State Department.

Pompeo and then-President Trump were leading exponents, along with the late Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, of the First Freedom view that argues that religious freedom is not just first sequentially because it touches on questions of “ultimate significance and the freedoms of speech, press, and assembly are there to aid and buttress the ‘first freedom’.”

Proponents of the Article 18 view, vocalized by current Secretary of State Blinken, argue that religious freedom, while crucially important, is “co-equal” with the freedoms of speech, press, assembly and peaceful redress of grievance.

I believe, however, based on my observation and experience, that there is disagreement on an issue of fundamental importance at stake in this debate.

I had the privilege of serving as a Commissioner on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom from 2001-2012. This Commission, set up by the passage of the International Religious Freedom Act, is an independent, federal government commission, not under the State Department or Congress, charged with monitoring the state of religious freedom in every country in the world. They are required to write an annual report about the state of religious freedom in each country, followed by recommendations to both the President and the Congress on ways in which American foreign aid can, and should be, used to promote religious freedom.

The Commission is structured to be extremely bi-partisan. When you have a Democrat president, for example, he appoints three commissioners and the Democratic leader in the House and in the Senate nominate one commissioner each and the Republican leaders in the House and Senate nominate two each. So, the President’s party has a one-vote majority (5-4) and it takes six votes for the Commission to act.

During my years there, we would periodically undertake fact-finding trips to various countries around the world to measure for ourselves how much religious freedom was actually afforded to citizens in those countries. Undoubtedly the most memorable fact-finding trip we undertook during my tenure on the Commission was an almost two weeks visit to Communist China and Tibet in 2005.

This visit took place during what turned out to be a temporary “spring of hope” when the Chinese Communist government appeared to be relaxing many of its very oppressive policies against Christians in that country. Alas, the promised reforms were still-born and the situation has degenerated drastically for all religious faiths in China, with the Uyghur Muslims suffering what can only be called a genocidal policy.

Invariably, on these site visits, we Commissioners went to great lengths to make it crystal clear to the host country that the USCIRF standard was not America’s First Amendment standard that guaranteed complete religious liberty and freedom from government interference with people’s religious free expression rights. We often said that we would recommend it, but we could not demand it because that would interfere with the host nation’s sovereignty.

The USCIRF standard was the international one – the one codified in the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 18, which reads:

Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and
religion, this right includes freedom to change his religious belief, and
freedom, either alone or in community with others, and in public or
private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice,
worship and observance.

So, what is the difference between the First Amendment and the Universal Declaration’s Article 18? The First Freedom position legally restricts the government from interjecting itself into the religious experience and practice of its people.

Quite simply, the First Amendment guarantees people from government interference with their religion. The Article 18 position merely guarantees some level of toleration for dissenting faiths in a society where Islam or Communist oppression may take over and rescind government support or toleration. 

For example, when we were in China it became apparent that the Chinese officials were increasingly irritated that we were not more impressed with the comparatively greater toleration they had been granting people of faith.

In our final exit dinner with the Chinese officials, I was designated to explain the Commission’s position. I did so in the following way: “It has become apparent to us that you are frustrated that our team has not been more impressed with the greater degree of toleration you have been affording many religious groups in your country. We have noticed.  However, while it is a bigger cage, and it is a gilded cage, it is still a cage. And that is toleration, not freedom.”

Sadly, history has proven our position correct since the Chinese have cracked down drastically and have made the cage very small.  

Under Article 18, each country could make Islam or some other religion, the official state religion supported by the people’s taxes. Under the First Freedom system that would not or could not happen.

In other words, under the First Freedom position, the people are sovereign and no religion can discriminate against them or hamper their mission. 

As Justice Arthur Goldberg wrote over a half-century ago in the famous Supreme Court prayer decision (School District of Abington, Pennsylvania et.al V. Schemp et.al):

“The fullest realization of true religious liberty requires that government neither engage in, nor compel religious practices, that it effects no favoritism among sects or between religion and nonreligion. . .”  then Justice Goldberg went on to declare that “the attitude of government toward religion must be one of neutrality.” Justice Goldberg then went on to say that even “untutored devotion to the concept of neutrality can lead to approval of results which partake not simply of that non-interference and non-involvement with the religious which the constitution demands, but of a brooding and pervasive devotion to the secular and a passive or even active, hostility to the religious. Such results are not only not compelled by the Constitution, but it seems to me “are prohibited by it.”

Justice Goldberg warns, quite correctly, that even with the government neutrality required by the First Amendment freedom from government interference in religion must be carefully monitored. With mere toleration, you will always have government abuses against religion.

The conflict between First Freedom advocates and Article 18 supporters is clearly a “full-throated” freedom vs. “mere” toleration debate. Those who deny that this is the case either fail to comprehend the problem, or they support mere toleration.

ABOUT THE COMMENTATOR:

Dr. Richard Land, BA (magna cum laude), Princeton; D.Phil. Oxford; and Th.M., New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, was president of the Southern Baptists’ Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (1988-2013) and has served since 2013 as president of Southern Evangelical Seminary in Charlotte, NC. Dr. Land has been teaching, writing, and speaking on moral and ethical issues for the last half century in addition to pastoring several churches. He is the author of The Divided States of AmericaImagine! A God Blessed AmericaReal Homeland SecurityFor Faith & Family and Send a Message to Mickey.

What Big Tech Didn’t Want You To See On The Federalist In 2020


Reported by Joy Pullmann  29, 2020

Leftist media has skewed U.S. politics for decades, but Big Tech’s amplified influence over global discourse and governments is new. While Congress passed no legislation related to this political and national security emergency, we the people were held captive in lockdowns during a major election while crucial public information was filtered, hidden, and surveilled by unaccountable companies with no allegiance to the United States and obvious disdain for hundreds of millions of its inhabitants.

This is a huge social problem. Regaining our freedom to speak and to share and compare information may be the first task towards redressing our grievances against those who claim to govern us. For how can consent of the governed be truly granted when the people’s ability to inform their consent is manipulated? It cannot.

To regain our self-governance, then, we all need to develop new habits of information-gathering and -sharing. As a tiny part of and precursor to more of that effort, here is an accounting of Federalist work that Google, Facebook, and Twitter tried to keep people from seeing in 2020.

You will notice it fits the pattern of big tech censorship that big tech claims isn’t censorship: it all goes one way politically. All of it also comprises election-meddling by effectively promoting misinformation and disinformation on key voting issues.

Just Plain Hiding the News They Can’t Use

In June, a foreign think tank, NBC, and Google colluded in an attempt to demonetize The Federalist in retaliation for our coverage of Black Lives Matter rioting. The tech giant demanded we end our commenting section, and continues to refuse to allow it back. Google-owned YouTube also continues to shadowban Federalist content and choke our engagement.

In July, Google claimed it had “mistakenly” made it impossible for people to find a slew of conservative news sites, including CNSNews.com, The Washington Free Beacon, Breitbart, Twitchy, RedState, PJ Media, The Blaze, Townhall, LifeNews, PragerU, and The Daily Wire.

After the election, Instagram slapped a warning label on a post in which President Trump honored Pearl Harbor Day. Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, put an automatic “fact check” on Trump’s post that claimed Joe Biden won the election, although Trump’s post included nothing about the election results. Instagram later removed the “warning.”

In October, “Twitter suspended U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan for a post celebrating the success of the U.S. southern border wall keeping violent criminals from reaching American communities,” reported The Federalist’s Tristan Justice.

The online publisher banned Morgan, a public official, from communicating the elected president’s publicly stated priorities, telling him in an automated message the post violated the publisher’s “hateful conduct” policies. Morgan had written: “@CBP & @USACEHQ continue to build new wall every day. Every mile helps us stop gang members, murderers, sexual predators, and drugs from entering our country. It’s a fact, walls work.” If this is hate speech, all conservatives are criminals.

Evidence of Biden Family Corruption

Infamously, Twitter and Facebook tampered with the 2020 election in October by immediately and actively suppressing public knowledge of a federal corruption investigation into Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, related to information found on a Delaware laptop.

Yesterday, the computer store owner who turned the laptop over to federal investigators sued Twitter for defamation. Twitter’s ban was predicated on alleging the laptop containing “hacked” material, even though, as The Federalist documented, Twitter regularly allows the circulation of hacked and hoax information. The laptop owner says he did not hack it, he owns it, and that Twitter claiming otherwise has significantly damaged his reputation and employment.

In October, Twitter openly admitted it was pre-emptively choking the story on their platform even before deploying their Chinese- and Democrat-funded “fact-checking” organizations to explain away what are obviously politically motivatedselectively enforced, anti-truth information operations designed to help Democrats control the United States.

Twitter also pre-emptively blocked The New York Post’s subsequent reporting on its Hunter Biden laptop scoop, despite those containing additional corroborating details, and although witnesses and additional evidence also surfaced to independently corroborate the story. Twitter banned members of Congress and the president’s campaign from posting information about the story. It kept the Post locked out of its Twitter account for weeks following the breaking story in the run-up to the election.

Lest we all become too dulled to this successful attempt to control the nation without the people’s consent because we’re all used to leftists refusing fair play and equal treatment, we all need to remember that enough Biden voters to swing the election decisively to Trump said they would have changed their votes if they knew about this corruption story. Big tech bias is not a trivial issue. It is the difference between a fair election and a corrupted one, between self-rule and a corrupted oligarchy.

Evidence of Election Tampering and Errors

From May 2018 to October 2020, Twitter and Facebook restricted posts from President Trump at least 65 times, according to a media study. They did this precisely zero times to Joe Biden (or Hillary Clinton), and it’s not because he’s the most accurate politician alive.

In June, the anti-Trump bias ridiculously caused Twitter to put a warning label on an obvious parody video about a “racist baby.” More seriously, at the same time Twitter repeatedly throttled as “false” President Trump’s claims that mail-in ballots are an insecure voting method. That is absolutely true and it made the 2020 election ripe for fraud, abuse, and contested results.

On election night, Twitter flagged a post from President Trump that said: “We are up BIG, but they are trying to STEAL the Election. We will never let them do it. Votes cannot be cast after the Polls are closed!” Twitter claimed this was “disputed and might be misleading” and banned users from sharing the tweet. Later it was shown that Pennsylvania indeed counted post-election ballots against its own law forbidding that.

On Nov. 4, Twitter slapped a “warning label” about “disputed information” in a tweet from Federalist Cofounder Sean Davis, whose offending tweet accurately summarized the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s ruling that ballots brought in after election day would be counted.

On Nov. 9, Twitter put a warning label on a quote from and link to an affidavit of sworn testimony alleging election fraud tweeted by Federalist Senior Contributor Ben Weingarten. “This claim about election fraud is disputed,” Twitter claimed, preventing people from retweeting it without adding their own comments. It later removed the choke without explanation.

In December, Federalist Senior Editor Mollie Hemingway explored the disqualifying errors in a “fact-check” done by one of Facebook’s partners of allegations of election fraud in Georgia. Facebook used the same fact-check she fisked to pre-emptively ban her article from its platform.

COVID-19

Big communications companies rabidly policed discussions about COVID-19 in 2020. Big tech seemed especially pouncy about information related to face masks. This included Amazon’s Nov. 24 ban of a book by former New York Times reporter Alex Berenstein’s book discussing the scientific evidence that mask mandates are ineffective.

It extended to repeated bans and chokes on Federalist content about masks, many by a supposed Facebook “fact check” that didn’t fact check any Federalist articles. It was just a generic fact check applied against anyone questioning the efficacy of cloth masks and generic mask mandates, even when such individuals cited scientific evidence from reputable sources.

Former White House Coronavirus Task Force advisor Dr. Scott Atlas was banned from publishing references to scientific studies on masks. CNN anchor Jake Tapper and CNN commentator Dr. Sanjay Gupta, a professor of neurosurgery, cheered Twitter on. Google-owned YouTube infamously pulled down a June interview of Atlas.

Weirdly, in April Facebook had blocked DIY cloth mask-making sites while banning the sale of medical-grade masks and sanitizer. Yet just a few months later Facebook’s blocking activities supported the use of makeshift masks made out of any material and blocked information, including from The Federalist, pointing out that all masks are not equally effective at virus and other particle filtering. Perhaps pointing out that research has found that gaiter-style or scarf masks actually may increase virus transmission may get this article banned too.

Social media bans on mask information from The Federalist included the well-read Oct. 29 article that quoted and linked to high-quality studies from reputable sources, “These 12 Graphs Show Mask Mandates Do Nothing To Stop COVID,” which was also throttled on LinkedIn.

YOU ALL MIGHT WANT TO TRY TWO NEWER SOCIAL MEDIA SITES. https://mewe.com/ and https://parler.com/

Spygate

In October, Twitter began publicly testing stronger information controls, which resulted in it warning users who tried to tweet a Federalist article breaking new information about the Spygate scandal. Spygate, of course, is the Obama administration’s documented and so far unpunished use of federal surveillance and policing powers to baselessly persecute, prosecute, and hamstring their political opponents.

The article Twitter impeded reported handwritten notes from Obama CIA Director John Brennan that showed President Obama was made aware months before the 2016 election that the Russian government may have been influencing Hillary Clinton’s false collusion smear against Donald Trump. Sean Davis reported more in that piece for The Federalist:

There is no evidence the FBI ever took any action to ensure that Russian knowledge of Clinton’s plans did not lead to infiltration of that campaign’s operation by Russian intelligence agents. The CIA referral, specifically its reference to a ‘CROSSFIRE HURRICANE fusion cell,’ suggests that the Obama administration’s anti-Trump investigation may not have been limited to the FBI, but may have included the use of CIA assets and surveillance capabilities, raising troubling questions about whether the nation’s top spy service was weaponized against a U.S. political campaign.

Seemingly Random Acts of Censorship

In September, Facebook employed abortionists to “fact-check” two videos from Live Action explaining why abortion is never medically necessary. Numerous obstetrics professionals and a national OB-GYN organization supported Live Action’s statement as accurate, but that didn’t matter to Facebook, which choked Live Action’s page.

In November, Instagram and Facebook’s sweeps caught up an innocent and completely apolitical local charity that used Facebook to coordinate donors and volunteers. Oathkeepers Causeplay may sound like it’s a conservative group, but it’s not (and even if it were, there’s nothing wrong with being conservative). It’s a group of people who dress up like TV and movie superheroes and other characters to cheer up disabled and sick children.

The act of random censorship hurt sick kids by depriving the charity of funds and volunteers. It also scared people away from associating with the charity — which, again, not only did nothing “wrong” but actively does good — out of fears they’d also lose their Facebook-mediated access to friendships and social activity. Good job, Facebook.

Also in October — see a pattern here? — Facebook users who searched for the Christian group Let Us Worship were given a warning message falsely claiming the group was affiliated with QAnon. “This is a peaceful movement from across the political spectrum and they are suppressing it by linking us to Q,” the group’s founder, Sean Feucht, told The Federalist. Facebook claimed the mislabeling was a glitch. Yet nobody shut down their traffic over their inaccurate statements despite the harm they caused others.

Again in October, Facebook demonetized the satire website Babylon Bee for making a Monty Python joke in a headline. Facebook claimed the Bee’s silly headline “Senator Hirono Demands ACB Be Weighed Against A Duck To See If She Is A Witch” “incited violence,” and refused to alter its decision after a review. In a self-parody that is impossible to top, Snopes and Twitter also frequently “fact-check” and throttle the clean satire site. I guess humor is now too conservative to allow.

It wasn’t just 2020, either. This has been going on for years. In fact, you might say Twitter, Google, Facebook, and others have been perfecting their ability to shut down non-leftist discourse and project public opinion cascades. In retrospect, earlier tech bans on speech look like dress rehearsals for the 2020 election bleep show.

In 2018, for example, The Federalist published a theologian’s story about how Facebook banned him from expressing Christian views about teaching young children about LGBT sex and gender identities. Earlier that year, Project Veritas released undercover video of a former Twitter employee verifying the company’s practice of “shadowbanning,” called that at the time because the practice was covert. In 2019, Google banned a conservative think tank from buying online advertising because a scholar affiliated with the think tank had critiqued multiculturalism.

Punishing the Conservative Base While Monetizing Them

Once a website’s content has begun to be flagged as “false” even if it is not, search engines and social media increasingly throttle traffic to the entire site, not just the flagged content. This further serves leftist information control by making publications reluctant to challenge what the unelected tech arbiters of reality have decided we must see and say. This means Google, Facebook, and Twitter ultimately don’t want you to see anything from The Federalist. They also hope you don’t notice.

“[S]tories from right-wing media outlets with false and misleading claims about discarded ballots, miscounted votes and skewed tallies were among the most popular news stories on” Facebook directly after the election, reported The New York Times. Facebook responded with deeper cuts into the reach of information from right-leaning outlets and greater amplification for articles from leftist media:

employees proposed an emergency change to the site’s news feed algorithm, which helps determine what more than two billion people see every day. It involved emphasizing the importance of what Facebook calls ‘news ecosystem quality’ scores, or N.E.Q., a secret internal ranking it assigns to news publishers based on signals about the quality of their journalism.

…The change was part of the ‘break glass’ plans Facebook had spent months developing for the aftermath of a contested election.

Unnamed sources told the New York Times Facebook is working on ways to control information while still keeping users, and that the tools it has developed for this mostly affect right-leaning content. The company may also make permanent some information control mechanisms developed specifically for the 2020 election. But they have to be careful about this, the NYT reported, because when people notice the information control they stop using Facebook so much.

Right-leaning information is consistently among the most popular content on Facebook and YouTube. This means people who consume right-leaning information provide Facebook and Twitter millions of dollars because their time spent on site lures advertising. This allows Facebook to put competing information outlets out of business by siphoning away all advertising revenue while not paying for the content creation that draws the eyeballs, reinforcing their information monopolies.

Nice little racket. Tailor-made for people who don’t believe Americans ought to be allowed to make their own decisions.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Her newest ebook is “The Family Read-Aloud Advent Calendar,” and her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” A Hillsdale College honors graduate, @JoyPullmann is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books.

‘Is It The Worship Or The Building?’ Northam Tells Virginians They Don’t Need To Be In Church For God To Hear Their Prayers


Reported by MARY MARGARET OLOHAN, SOCIAL ISSUES REPORTER | December 11, 20209:09 AM ET

Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/is-it-the-worship-or-the-building-northam-tells-virginians-they-dont-need-to-be-in-church-for-god-to-hear-their-prayers-2649450980.html?/

Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam told Virginians Thursday that they don’t need to be in church for God to hear their prayers. The governor announced a new executive order Thursday expanding mask mandates, setting a curfew between midnight and 5 a.m., and lowering the number of people at social gatherings to 10 or less people, the Washington Post reported. The measures go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Monday.

Though these restrictions do not affect houses of worship, Northam urged those who wish to continue worshipping in person to stay home and practice recommended safety measures due to a rise in coronavirus cases. (RELATED: Here’s How The DOJ Has Fought Against Orders Limiting Religious Services During The Pandemic)

“This year, we need to think about what is truly the most important thing,” the governor said. “Is it the worship or the building?”

“For me, God is wherever you are,” he continued. “You don’t have to sit in the church pew for God to hear your prayers.”

WATCH: 

“Worship with a mask on is still worship, worship outside or worship online is still worship,” Northam added. He did not respond to multiple requests for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Critics of Northam’s comments pointed out that in-person attendance at religious services is a fundamental aspect of worship for many religions, particularly Catholicism.

 

Earlier this year Northam banned gatherings of 10 or more people through initial stay-at-home orders, restrictions which effectively banned church services. Authorities have arrested multiple religious leaders for defying coronavirus orders, such as Pastor Tony Spell of the Louisiana Life Tabernacle church and Florida megachurch pastor Rodney Howard-Browne.

In April, a Southern Virginia judge denied a request for a temporary injunction in Russell County resident Larry Hughes’s lawsuit saying that Virginia’s stay-at-home order violated religious freedom. (RELATED: Mental Health Improved For Only One Group During COVID — And Dems Did Everything They Could To Suppress It)

The DOJ filed a statement of interest with a Virginia federal court on May 3 supporting Lighthouse Fellowship Church, which serves recovering drug addicts and former prostitutes. Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Eric Dreiband noted at the time that “for many people of faith, exercising religion is essential, especially during a crisis.”

“The Commonwealth of Virginia has offered no good reason for refusing to trust congregants who promise to use care in worship in the same way it trusts accountants, lawyers, and other workers to do the same,” Dreiband said.

Northam is not the only lawmaker who has been accused of restricting religious freedom during the pandemic. Governors and mayors across the United States have issued orders throughout the pandemic that restrict or prohibit religious services, and the DOJ has pushed back against such restrictions on multiple occasions.

Gallup polling released this week found that only those who attended religious services weekly saw a positive change between 2019 and 2020 in how they rated their mental health. No other Demographic group in the Gallup poll saw a percentage increase in rating their mental health as excellent. (RELATED: Supreme Court Ruling Sends A Message Churches Can’t Be Treated Like ‘Second Class’ Citizens, Legal Experts Say)

“Houses of worship and religious services provide so much more than just a weekly meeting place — they are where so many Americans find strength, community, and meaning,” the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty’s Director of Research Caleb Lyman told the Daily Caller News Foundation Wednesday.

He continued, “Findings from this year’s Religious Freedom Index—that 62 percent of respondents said that faith had been important during the pandemic — align with Gallup’s findings on the importance of religious services to Americans’ mental health.”

Religious organizations in New York most recently took Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to the Supreme Court over his restrictions on houses of worship, accusing Cuomo of “targeting Orthodox practices.”

Conservative justices, including Justice Amy Coney Barrett, sided with religious organizations in the 5-4 ruling the night before Thanksgiving, while Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberal justices. Earlier this year, the court sided 5-4 in favor of the liberal justices on COVID-19 religious restrictions in California and Nevada, according to CNN.

Church Leaders Who Cancel Christmas Services Are Clinging To Government Lies, Not Christ


Church Leaders Who Cancel Christmas Services Are Clinging To Government Lies, Not Christ

The Supreme Court’s ruling last Wednesday against discriminatory targeting of religious groups with COVID-19 restrictions marked a significant victory in the ongoing battle to preserve religious liberty. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, hostile stakeholders in public office have assaulted the first freedom through superciliously labeling religious services “nonessential.” Christians in much of the country now find themselves in the demeaning and intolerable position of being allowed to worship only in the manner and on terms dictated by politically motivated governors.

Respecting authorities’ claims about an unknown disease made sense early in the outbreak, but now after better scientific information shows many initial fears are false. Yet politicians refuse to come clean while ignoring their own rules forbidding us from fulfilling our Christian duties. So it is time for us once again to assert that church is the most essential activity, period. Instead of valiantly fighting in the vanguard, however, many religious leaders have quickly retreated.

It is one thing for a church leader to prayerfully consider the individual needs of his church, striving to maintain unity among members in disagreements, protecting the health of the vulnerable, and offering stability amid uncertainty. It is quite another for shepherds to forsake the assembling of their flocks and enable the propaganda that congregating freely to worship God is selfish and “could kill grandma.” This unbiblical stance also overlooks the hypocrites in public office and the media who don’t even play by their own silly rules and ignore the data, for much lesser purposes than the health of our souls.

Many such religious leaders are neglecting the soul-saving mission of the church. The notion that being a good Christian requires indefinite cessation of communal worship — and for Catholics, the suspension of the sacraments — to prevent the spread of illness is a falsehood that has confused the faithful and undermined religious freedom.

Supreme Court Upholds Religious Liberty

In the case brought by the Orthodox Jewish group Agudath Israel of America and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, New York, against Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the Supreme Court held that “the restrictions at issue here, by effectively barring many from attending religious services, strike at the very heart of the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty.” In a concurring opinion, Justice Neil Gorsuch posed a pertinent rhetorical question: “Who knew that public health would so perfectly align with secular convenience?”

Gorsuch held that “the only explanation for treating religious places differently seems to be a judgment that what happens there just isn’t as ‘essential’ as what happens in secular spaces.” He warned that “in too many places, for far too long, our first freedom has fallen on deaf ears.”

For several months now, elected officials and many church leaders around the country have flagrantly ignored religious liberty. States such as California, Oregon, and Washington have witnessed a new wave of post-election crackdowns on religious services. In San Diego County, churches are currently prohibited from holding indoor services. Meanwhile, a San Diego court just issued a temporary order exempting coronavirus restrictions from applying to a strip club, ruling that such entertainment constitutes “constitutionally protected speech.”

In Oregon, new restrictions limit faith-based gatherings to a maximum of 25 people regardless of church size but allow businesses to continue operating at a reduced percentage of their total capacity. Archbishop of Portland Alexander Sample rightly argued that allowing a measly 25 worshipers in a cathedral that can seat 1,000 isn’t data-driven and doesn’t make sense.

The Church Is Essential

expressed concern back in May about politicians labeling religious services “nonessential” and allowing the state to determine on what terms churches can hold services. At that time, Washington bishops effectively thumbed their noses at President Trump for declaring that state governments should allow houses of worship to reopen.

The bishops instead hitched their wagon to Gov. Jay Inslee’s rogue horse. Hence six months down the road, Inslee again targeted Washington churches as part of his latest round of arbitrary fiats. Church capacity is reduced to 25 percent, and congregational and choral singing is prohibited.

Meanwhile, the very authorities who tut-tut and wag fingers clearly don’t adhere to or believe in the merits of their own nonsense rules. Sanctimonious public officeholders have lectured us about keeping business closed, taking unemployment on the chin, staying home, and wearing masks while they visit salons, attend private dinners, and jet off out of state for holidays with family. The duplicity of notorious mask shamers such as CNN’s Chris Cuomo and White House correspondents Kaitlan Collins and Jonathan Karl has similarly been on display.

The hypocrisy is not limited to the secular sphere. Pope Francis condemned peaceful lockdown protests despite the World Health Organization’s warning against using lockdowns as the primary means of controlling the virus. Francis believes that closing churches, businesses, and schools, and forcing people out of work are all “necessary for people’s protection.” He has even canceled public celebration of Christmas liturgies at the Vatican.

Yet Francis didn’t appear particularly worried about Wuhan virus transmission when, free from any semblance of social distancing and masks, he enjoyed a cozy chat about poverty and social justice with a group of handsomely paid NBA players and fellow pals of the Chinese Communist Party. Evidently, on protecting the freedom to assemble, to provide for one’s family, and even to freely worship, government-imposed restrictions are non-negotiable, but when it’s about racial and economic politics, the holy grail of neo-Marxists, lockdowns are a suggestion only.

Against this backdrop, Christians should be prepared for the usual suspects in public office and the press, facilitated by an array of religious leaders, to crack down on Christmas celebrations. We will no doubt hear more of the “we do this not out of fear but out of love” mantra. Given, however, that the survival rate is 94.6 percent for those 70 years and older and between 99.5-99.997 percent for those 69 and younger, rapid breakthroughs in therapeutics have been announced, three reportedly effective vaccines are on the way, and government authorities are flouting their own restrictions, the “love thy neighbor” lecture is becoming as tedious as it is false.

Christians Need Church to Obey God’s Commands

The Gospels tell us the greatest commandment is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind. We cannot fulfill the second greatest commandment to love our neighbor as ourselves if that love is not solidly founded in an encounter with God. This means gathering with the faithful in sung praise and thanksgiving, as we read in Psalms and was the custom from the earliest church, as well as explicitly commanded in scripture.

The Greek word for church, “ekklesia,” comes from the Old Testament and originally referred to the assembly of the people of Israel. When St. Paul first used the term, he intended it as the new community of believers in Christ. This “ekklesia” is not a human association borne of common interests and beliefs but a summoning by God himself.

For Catholics, the encounter with God is achieved even more profoundly through the sacrament of the Eucharist. Jesus is literally and wholly present — body and blood, soul and divinity — under the appearances of consecrated bread and wine. Whatever way you look at it, religious services are essential, and church leaders should say so.

Religious leaders must get their priorities straight. No doubt, pastors are genuinely concerned for the health of the most vulnerable in their communities and trying to accommodate the confusion and fears of their congregants. Some must feel their hands are tied by unsupportive leadership. Still others, I suspect, find themselves effectively cornered by congregants whose political indoctrination runs deeper than their catechesis.

Nevertheless, the role of preachers is to win souls for Christ, not to protect us or themselves from physical infirmity. St. Paul urges a return to God through Christ and cautions against domination by earthly pleasures and preoccupations. In other words, if, as St. Ambrose of Milan taught, we have a wound to heal, Christ is the doctor; if we are parched by fever, he is the spring; if we fear death, he is life; and if we are in darkness, he is light.

After a dismal year, and in sober anticipation of Joe Biden’s threatened “dark winter,” it is more important than ever for Christians to unite in praise of the Light that shines in the darkness and which the darkness has never put out. We should demand that our religious leaders mark the Nativity with fitting pomp and ceremony and refuse to support churches whose pastors spread or cower behind the lie that the celebration of Christmas is nonessential.

ABOUT TYHE AUTHOR:
Carina Benton is a native Australian living in Washington state. She is a practicing Catholic and has taught for many years in Catholic and Christian schools. She is a mother of two young children.
Photo Pikist

Biden Appoints ‘Anti-Free Speech’ Richard Stengel to Transition Team Media Post


Reported by JOEL B. POLLAK | 

Read more at https://www.breitbart.com/the-media/2020/11/17/biden-appoints-anti-free-speech-richard-stengel-to-transition-team-media-post/

Richard Stengel (Jemal Countess / Getty for TIME)

The New York Post reported last week:

Richard Stengel is the Biden transition “Team Lead” for the US Agency for Global Media, the US government media empire that includes Voice of America, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

Stengel, an Obama administration alumnus, wrote last year in a Washington Post op-ed that US freedom of speech was too unfettered and that changes must be considered.

In the Post op-ed, “Why America needs a hate speech law,” Stengel argued:

[A]s a government official traveling around the world championing the virtues of free speech, I came to see how our First Amendment standard is an outlier.

All speech is not equal. And where truth cannot drive out lies, we must add new guardrails. I’m all for protecting “thought that we hate,” but not speech that incites hate.

As Breitbart News noted in May, Stengel, an MSNBC analyst, also defended restrictions on speech about the coronavirus:

The First Amendment doesn’t protect false speech about a virus or false speech that endangers the health of your users. And by the way, Facebook and Twitter have been taking things down, but they need to be even more vigilant about it, and Google needs to be even more vigilant about what they prioritize in their search results.

Constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley warned about Stengel’s appointment in a column Tuesday: “[I]t would be difficult to select a more anti-free speech figure to address government media policy, one has to assume that Biden will continue the onslaught against this core freedom as president.”

He noted that Biden himself had publicly advocated restrictions on speech during the campaign: “Biden called for greater speech controls on the Internet and denounced Twitter for allowing others to speak freely.”

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

‘Who Do You Think You Are, God?’: Tucker Carlson Calls Gov. Cuomo ‘Stupid Governor’ Over Threat To Close Religious Services


Reported by DAVID KRAYDEN | OTTAWA BUREAU CHIEF | October 06, 20209:31 AM ET

URL of the originating web site: https://www.conservativereview.com/who-do-you-think-you-are-god-tucker-carlson-calls-gov-cuomo-stupid-governor-over-threat-to-close-religious-services-2648115541.html/

Fox News host Tucker Carlson said Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is a “stupid governor” and is violating the First Amendment for his threat to close down religious services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carlson asked if Cuomo believed he was “God” during “Tucker Carlson Tonight” and demanded to know the “science behind” the threat.

“The governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, decided to approve the closure of many nonessential businesses. That’s not because he’s opposed to lockdowns, he thinks the real problem is religious services.” 

(RELATED: Chris Cuomo Has Yet To Ask Andrew Cuomo About New York Nursing Home Deaths. Here Are 9 Questions He Asked Instead)

Carlson showed a clip of Cuomo saying, “If the religious leaders do not agree to abide by these rules then we will close the religious institutions — period.”

“Really?” Carlson asked. “Because in the country that we lived in in January, we had a First Amendment that said government will not get in the way of your exercise of your religion. People would have laughed at that. ‘We will close the religious institutions — period?’ Who do you think you are: God? You’re not: you’re some stupid governor of a declining state.”

Carlson noted that Cuomo is targeting services in Orthodox Jewish communities. They haven’t been playing along, to their great credit. Putting aside whether any of that is legal, what is the science behind it — the reported ‘science’ behind it?

Critics of Cuomo say that he should not have forced state nursing homes to take in 4,500 patients with COVID-19 earlier in the pandemic, as the Associated Press reported.

Cuomo issued the order to nursing homes and other assisted living centers March 25, according to the AP. He reversed that policy May 11. A Daily Caller News Foundation investigation also discovered that New York undercounted the number of deaths in nursing homes.

But the governor has blamed President Donald Trump for the nursing home deaths, suggesting he was following federal government guidelines on where to send nursing home residents infected with the virus. (RELATED: Andrew Cuomo Says He’s Through With Coronavirus Predictions)

The Fox News host said that de Blasio is not always so concerned about social distancing and lockdowns.

“What’s interesting is that just the other day, practically, Bill de Blasio said he wasn’t against mask gatherings as long as he agreed with the politics people were expressing,” Carlson continued.

Ann Coulter: ‘Woke Corporate America’ Is ‘Our Number One Enemy’


Reported by ROBERT KRAYCHIK |

URL of the originating web site: https://www.breitbart.com/radio/2020/06/25/ann-coulter-woke-corporate-america-is-our-number-one-enemy/

Ann Coulter / AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

“[Republicans] suck up to the Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson [and] woke corporate America, which is our enemy,” Coulter said. “Our number one enemy probably is not even the universities or the social justice morons running around on college campus. It really is corporate America, but Republicans just have it in their heads, ‘Ooo, it’s capitalism. We support corporations.’”

LISTEN:

Coulter predicted an acceleration of political censorship on the Internet, including social media deplatforming and domain deregistration, as November’s elections near.

“I have been predicting for years that the Internet is too free,” Coulter said. “We can communicate with one another. We can get information that the New York Times, MSNBC, and CNN simply will not report. They’ve got to shut down the internet to conservatives, and what better time to do it than the year of Trump’s reelection.”

Coulter warned, “As the election gets closer, there are going to be more and more soldiers falling … Where are Republicans on this?”

Internet censorship is a matter of free speech and expression, Coulter held. “That’s what was so great about the internet,” she said. “Even the nutty stuff, it was the Wild West and this is the idea behind free speech, that the truth will rise.”

Coulter added, “They’re not worried about people being misinformed. Nobody gets misinformed except by MSNBC, CNN, the New York Times, ABC, CBS. What they’re worrying about is people being persuaded, and their argument is that anything they disagree with is hurtful, is hate speech, and it must be stopped.”

Democrats are courting political forces beyond their control, assessed Coulter, referring to rioters, looters, and vandals operating amid recent unrest following the death of George Floyd.

Coulter said, “You can’t call the mob off, ‘Okay, boys. It’s November 4th. We’ve defeated Trump. Now everybody settle down.’ That doesn’t happen. You’ve unleashed this beast, and there’s no one there to stop it.”

Breitbart News Tonight broadcasts live on SiriusXM Patriot channel 125 weeknights from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern or 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific.

Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter.

Former NYC Top Cop Kerik Blasts Officials Using COVID as Excuse To Take Americans’ Freedoms


Authored By C. Douglas Golden | Published April 13, 2020 at 9:07am

URL of the originating web site: https://www.westernjournal.com/former-nyc-top-cop-kerik-blasts-officials-using-covid-excuse-take-americans-freedoms/

A teen being given a citation for merely driving in her car. Hiking trails closed. Church congregants for Easter services having their license plate numbers taken down by the police so that they can be told to be in quarantine for 14 days no matter what kind of social distancing was being practiced. That’s where we are now, and former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik isn’t particularly happy about it.

In a tweet Thursday, Kerik blasted officials who are using the coronavirus outbreak as a pretext to clamp down on freedoms that wouldn’t necessarily affect the spread of the virus.

“Yesterday, governors/mayors shut down walking trails,” Kerik tweeted.

”Some police have been ordered to arrest people for walking outside their homes. The government is considering a #coronavirus surveillance system.

“WTF! Americans better start paying attention and getting vocal! #Constitution.”

He went on to criticize New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, for his decision to stop construction projects.

“Today @GovMurphy stopped all non-essential construction,” he tweeted.

“Construction is a profession in which many will not be able to receive government assistance.

“Instead of mandating by order that they wear protective equipment and follow CDC directives, this will destroy them/families.”

Murphy had announced the halt to construction the day before Kerik’s tweet.

“We must continue to work together to flatten the curve of new COVID-19 cases in New Jersey,” Murphy said in a statement.

“By ceasing all non-essential construction projects and imposing additional mitigation requirements on essential businesses, we are furthering our aggressive efforts to enforce social distancing and limiting our public interactions to only the most essential in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19.”

In the executive order, Murphy also limited the number of customers who could be in an essential retail outlet at any given point in time and required those outlets to mark 6-foot increments on the floor in order to indicate how to socially distance, among many, many other things.

Park systems, meanwhile, have been shutting down across the country.

Here’s part of Oregon’s explication for closing its state park system late last month: “A single person walking on a trail is fine. There are a few million people in the west who are thinking the same thing, and then next thing you know, people are parking alongside roads to get into a park. That’s bad for you, it harms other people, and it puts stress on local groceries and health care systems.

It’s not just the hiking trails that have been shut down. The status of churches varies from state to state, with some listing them as an essential service and others shutting them entirely. Kentucky is one of the states in the latter category — and it managed to make a show of it this weekend when police took down the license plate numbers of the 50 people worshipping in the Maryville Baptist Church and put quarantine notices on their car, according to USA Today.

Newly elected Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, has engaged in a high-profile battle with a handful of churches that are still holding in-person services. In a move that absolutely won’t escalate the situation, state police threatened “further enforcement measures” for individuals receiving the quarantine notices if they decide not to quarantine.

At least there was some good news in this department last Wednesday, though: A 19-year-old Pennsylvania woman who was cited for “going for a drive”will have the ticket dropped, according to the York DispatchAnita Shaffer became one of the most prominent victims of over-officiousness in the time of coronavirus when Pennsylvania State Police hit her with a $200 ticket because she needed to get out of the house. She was the first person ticketed under Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s stay-at-home order. A few days later, officialdom decided it was probably best not to pursue the case.

Beside the fact that the troopers cited her under the wrong statute, York County District Attorney Dave Sunday felt that ticketing Shaffer didn’t serve “the interests of justice.”

“Ironically, if Ms. Shaffer had lied to the [trooper] and stated that she was driving to obtain food, medicine, or to a path to engage in outside exercise, Ms. Shaffer could not have received a citation for violating the stay at home order because no facts would exist to support its issuance,” Sunday wrote in his request to have the charges dropped. A district court judge granted the request.

I suppose kudos are in order to Mr. Sunday, a man who can probably figure out how to be six feet away from someone on a hiking trail. Alas, we live in a time when the government can’t trust us to hike or shop or drive correctly.

Mind you, this isn’t to say that all of this is smart.

No matter how much social distancing you practice and how much closer you feel to God when you go to church, you’re significantly better off if you decide to just go online. That said, the freedom of assembly and the freedom of religion are both enshrined under the First Amendment, so I wish Kentucky good luck defending that quarantine in court.

Kerik, by the way, isn’t exactly a wild-eyed libertarian. This was the top cop in New York City under Rudy Giuliani and during 9/11. That’s not the kind of resume that leads one to flights of anarchist fancy. He’s bringing up a very real concern that our rights have taken a backseat to trying to beat this disease. In some respects, that’s understandable. However, we’re about to be met with very sticky constitutional issues, including contact tracing and coronavirus “passports” to prove someone has antibodies and can re-enter society.

If the Constitution takes a backseat here, there’s the inevitable slippery slope: It can take a backseat anywhere. The fear is understandable, but fear cannot be allowed to set our rights afire.

Following are some images that, hopefully, will get you active in the fight for freedom. – Jerry Broussard

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

After Trump Invites Him Onstage, Activist Reveals Truth Behind What’s Happening to Conservatives on College Campuses


Reported By Alec Schemmel | Published March 2, 2019 at 2:16pm | Modified March 3, 2019 at 2:12pm

During President Donald Trump’s speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Saturday, he took a moment to recognize the discrimination conservative students face on college campuses.

“I turn on my television the other day and I saw somebody that was violently punched in the face,” Trump said to his audience at CPAC.

“The man’s name is Hayden Williams,” Trump added. “Hayden come up here please.”

Williams jumped onstage to say a few words, but he refused to use his several seconds of fame to talk about himself.

“It’s great that I’m being recognized,” he said, “but there’s so many conservative students across the country who are facing discrimination, harassment and worse if they dare to speak up on campus.”

Williams is a field representative at the Leadership Institute, a non-profit organization based of Arlington, Virginia, which aims to help fight the liberal bias that has infested America’s campuses. Williams was on UC Berkley’s campus on Feb. 19 helping local student activists when Zachary Greenberg, 28, allegedly assaulted him. Greenberg was arrested by UCPD on Friday afternoon and was being held on a $30,000 bond at Glenn Dyer Jail in Oakland.

“It’s as important now than ever the work at Leadership Institute and Campus Reform exposing these liberal abuses to the public,” said Williams, “and these students do it because they have a love of our nation and freedom.”

Williams said that if progressive socialists had their way, the Constitution would be put through a paper shredder.

“If you keep defending us, we’ll keep defending you,” Williams said of Trump.

The audience roared in approval as Trump announced a new executive order which requires colleges and universities to support free speech.

“If they want our dollars, and we give it to them by the billions, they’ve got to allow people like Hayden, and many other great young people … to speak,” Trump said.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website.

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Founded by Tucker Carlson, a 25-year veteran of print and broadcast media, and Neil Patel, former chief policy adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney, The Daily Caller News Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit providing original investigative reporting from a team of professional reporters that operates for the public benefit.

Antifa Shut Down Major Intersection, Threaten Citizens with Violence If They Don’t Obey


Reported By Jack Davis | October 8, 2018 at 5:48pm

Antifa protesters holding a vigil for a man shot to death by Portland police made it clear Saturday that they were taking over, and there was no room for anything else but obedience to mob rule.

The raw violence was captured by Brandon Farley, who in his Twitter profile says he captures “disruptive events in downtown Portland, Oregon.”

Warning: the following embedded videos contain strong language.

At one point, protesters blocked off an intersection as though they were the police and refused to let drivers pass.

A woman, asked by a driver why traffic was rerouted, had no time to explain.

“Because I told you to,” she said.

Various videos posted to Twitter show protesters threatening elderly drivers who did not understand what was going on.

Antifa protesters swarmed one car when it did not comply.

“Yeah brother, yeah you little white little f—er,” said one protester. “The First Amendment. Get the f— down the road.”

In the video, he appeared to notice that the car was registered in North Carolina and called the driver a “little white supremacist.”

“Go back to North Carolina where you came from. We don’t need your KKK in Portland, Oregon,” the protester said.

Meanwhile, drivers were frazzled.
“I’m in the middle of the intersection and (the protesters) are blocking traffic,” one confused driver says into his phone.
“We’re not here to riot. We’re here for justice,” said Charles Kimmons, who is related to victim Patrick Kimmons, according to Oregon Live. “We need to fight this all the way to the end. These cops need to be locked up.”

Police have said that Patrick Kimmons was shot at about 3 a.m. on Sept. 30 when police, responding to a call of a shooting, encountered Kimmons, who was armed.

Antifa has been on a rampage in Portland since June, when protesters blocked the offices of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and neither city officials nor police did anything to help the federal workers targeted.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Jack Davis is a free-lance writer. Writing as “Rusty” Davis, he is a Spur Award-nominated writer whose first two novels, “Wyoming Showdown” and “Black Wind Pass” were published by Five Star Publishing.

Anti-Gunner Students Allowed To Edit US Paper, End Up Humiliating Themselves


Authored By Cillian Zeal | March 26, 2018 at 2:19pm

URL of the original posting site: https://conservativetribune.com/anti-gunner-students-paper/

Publications have editors. Real ones. As in, those whose experience is commensurate with the paper, magazine or website they’re working for. They’re not just there to make sure their staff don’t “wreite like” th1s. Their function is edit for style, to check facts, to see if arguments cohere. For this, they’re paid handsomely. (Well, by the standards of the industry, anyhow.)

I mention this all because on Friday, the U.S. edition of The Guardian allowed the staff of the Eagle Eye — the official newspaper of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of one of the most horrific acts of evil we’ve witnessed on school grounds in many a year — essentially to write and edit their own piece detailing their recommendations to “halt mass shootings.” 

It’s worth noting that the paper’s parent publication, the London Guardian, is easily the most liberal mainstream publication in Great Britain. That certainly explains why they would engage in an experiment like this.

And, common sense unfortunately dictated exactly how the experiment went. The piece — which I’m sure did very well in terms of readership, given the quasi-celebrity nature of the authors and the fact that it was published a day before the March for Our Lives — is a farrago of unresearched errors, logical fallacies and appeals to emotion so threadbare and maudlin you wish that a real editor would have saved them from themselves.

Here are a few “highlights” from the piece, titled “Our manifesto to fix America’s gun laws.”

“We have a unique platform not only as student journalists, but also as survivors of a mass shooting. We are firsthand witnesses to the kind of devastation that gross incompetence and political inaction can produce.” 

This is in the introduction and it sets the tone for what’s to come. I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: neither surviving a mass shooting nor being a student journalist makes you an expert on either firearms or public policy.

In the latter department, it shows in this very sentence: the movement they are supporting (and the manifesto they wrote) wishes to place more — not less — power in the hands of those whose gross incompetence and political inaction caused the Parkland shooting in the first place.

“Ban semi-automatic weapons that fire high-velocity rounds: Civilians shouldn’t have access to the same weapons that soldiers do. That’s a gross misuse of the second amendment. (sic) These weapons were designed for dealing death: not to animals or targets, but to other human beings. The fact that they can be bought by the public does not promote domestic tranquility. Rather, their availability puts us into the kind of danger faced by men and women trapped in war zones.

“This situation reflects a failure of our government. It must be corrected to ensure the safety of those guaranteed the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” 

This is the kind of misinformation from which an actual editor — one who works for The Guardian as opposed to the Eagle Eye — would have saved these individuals. Hunting rounds available to the general public already fire at higher velocity than some ammunition used in military rifles, because hunters often shoot at moving targets.

So, in fact, they were mostly designed for “dealing death” to animals. They’re often for varmint control. However, in a mass shooting situation, they would actually have little practical advantage over most other guns (but more about this later).

While there may be the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in the Declaration of Independence, there is also the right to bear arms (which “shall not be infringed upon”) in the Constitution. Nowhere in these documents, it must be noted, is the promotion of “domestic tranquility” (again: this kind of clubfooted phraseology is why you let professionals edit your work) guaranteed.

The most sadly laughable line, however, is the part about “a failure of our government.” The government has failed in so many ways in Parkland, but in ways where handing more power over to them would only exacerbate the problem. I know these students write and edit a newspaper; perhaps they should read a few, as well.

“Ban accessories that simulate automatic weapons: High-capacity magazines played a huge role in the shooting at our school. In only 10 minutes, 17 people were killed, and 17 others were injured. This is unacceptable.

“That’s why we believe that bump stocks, high-capacity magazines and similar accessories that simulate the effect of military-grade automatic weapons should be banned.

“In the 2017 shooting in Las Vegas, 58 people were killed and 851 others were injured. The gunman’s use of bump stocks enabled vast numbers of people to be hurt while gathered in one of the most iconic cities in America. If it can happen there, it can happen anywhere. That’s why action must be taken to take these accessories off the market.”

Let’s start here with the idea that bump stocks “simulate automatic weapons.” They allow weapons to fire more rapidly — and very inaccurately. In the case of Las Vegas, it was a unique situation where accuracy didn’t matter to the gunman because of the press of the crowd into which he was firing. In most mass shootings, bump stocks would be useless. They also do not “simulate the effect of military-grade automatic weapons.” 

As for the high-capacity magazines, this is again something that anyone familiar with guns would know to be useless. In a soft-target situation like a school where security either cannot or refuses to engage a shooter, a handgun with a regular magazine would be more than enough to inflict the kind of damage the shooter did, irrespective of the size of the magazine. And, if targets were hardened, the size of the magazine wouldn’t matter; a student would likely be either stopped or deterred before it made a significant difference.

Nowhere is evidence provided for any of their claims in this department, likely because none exists.

Oh, and speaking of security:

“Increase funding for school security: We believe that schools should be given sufficient funds for school security and resource officers to protect and secure the entire campus. As a school of over 3,000 students, teachers and faculty, Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school (sic) was only supplied funds to hire one on-campus armed resource officer by the state. 

“Without backup, this officer’s hesitation proved to be disastrous and allowed for the senseless deaths of people who were killed on the third floor of the 1200 building. Though this idea has been proposed in the past, these funds should not be appropriated from the already scarce funding for public education. Governments should find resources to secure the millions of children that attend public schools without taking away from the quality of education that is offered at these institutions.”

Given the scarce resources, you mean a plan like, I don’t know, training and arming already-extant faculty members at your institution to back up armed resource officers? Like the president proposed? Probably not, given that one of the soi disant leaders of Stoneman Douglas gun control posse (who, in fairness, is not an editorial member of the Eagle Eye) has called that idea stupid.”

“Allow the CDC to make recommendations for gun reform: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should be allowed to conduct research on the dangers of gun violence. The fact that they are currently prohibited from doing so undermines the first amendment.(sic) It also violates the rights of the American people.

“It is hypocritical to rally people to protect the second amendment, (sic) while remaining silent on the ways that blocking research violates one of our most basic constitutional freedoms.” 

At least someone from The Guardian should have had the basic kindness to explain how incoherent this would sound. The Centers for Disease Control is a government organization. If it is commissioned by the government to provide gun death research — and the omnibus bill authorizes that — it can conduct said research. It would then present its findings.

Nowhere is a taxpayer-funded organization granted the right to officially opine on any issue without legislation or regulations that prompt it, under the First Amendment. This would be patently absurd — and, by the way, since the CDC is currently headed up by an appointee of the Trump administration, I seriously doubt the editorial members of the Eagle Eye would exactly be in favor of the CDC somehow utilizing the First Amendment to remark on how they feel about the Second Amendment.

Other arguments that you may have heard before that are included in the piece are the proposal to raise the minimum age for firearm purchases from 18 to 21, greater sharing of mental health information between mental health care providers and law enforcement, the “gun show loophole” argument and calls for more stringent background checks.

No particularly new points were contributed to the discussion and none of the arguments were rendered more astutely than they have heretofore been.  There is no unique perspective brought to anything (aside from the idea that government agencies ought to have autonomous First Amendment rights to speak however they want), and certainly no particular view expressed in the article is unique to an individual who has survived a mass shooting.

Instead, it is an exploitative document (on the part of The Guardian) riddled with poor reasoning and nonexistent research (on the part of the students) which only exists in mass media circulation because of who wrote it.

You may feel that I am being inordinately cruel and unjust by attacking what these students have written. They are, after all, survivors of an unspeakable tragedy. They are also public figures and have made themselves so by their decision to lecture Americans on what constitutional and legal rights they should and should not have. The expectation that those they have chosen to lecture ought to sit down and stay silent ignore the fact that the media is using these teenagers as cultural satraps to weave a proxy narrative of their own. 

If the media is going to engage in such puppetry, the very least they could do is give these kids a decent editor.

More Politically INCORRECT Cartoons for Monday March 19, 2018


More Politically INCORRECT Cartoons for Monday March 5, 2018


Supreme Court to Review Case of a Baker Told He Must Bake Gay Wedding Cake


Reported by  Ryan T. Anderson / / June 26, 2017 /

URL of the original posting site: http://dailysignal.com/2017/06/26/supreme-court-review-case-baker-fined-not-baking-gay-wedding-cake/

A lower court ruling had forced Jack Phillips to choose between obeying the government and following his religious beliefs. (Photo: iStock Photos)

Today was a good day for religious freedom at the Supreme Court. In a 7-2 decision, the court upheld religious liberty by saying that a state cannot exclude a church from a public program just because it’s a church. That was the big case at the court.

In a less-noted move, the court also agreed to review (“granted cert” in the legal jargon) a case about religious liberty, free speech, and government coercion to support gay marriage. The case involves Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, and whether he must create wedding cakes for same-sex weddings, even if doing so violates his beliefs. 

The case goes back to 2012, when a same-sex couple received a marriage license in Massachusetts and asked Phillips to bake a cake for a reception back home in Colorado, a state that in 2006 constitutionally defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

Phillips declined to create a wedding cake, citing his faith: “I don’t feel like I should participate in their wedding, and when I do a cake, I feel like I am participating in the ceremony or the event or the celebration that the cake is for,” he said.

The couple later obtained a wedding cake with rainbow-colored filling (illustrating the expressive nature of event cake-baking) from another bakery.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint against Masterpiece Cakeshop with the state, alleging violations of Colorado’s public accommodation law.

Administrative Law Judge Robert N. Spencer ruled against the bakery on Dec. 6, 2013, concluding that Phillips violated the law by declining service to the couple “because of their sexual orientation.”

Phillips objected to this characterization and responded that he would happily sell the couple his baked goods for any number of occasions, but creating a wedding cake would force him to express something that he does not believe, thereby violating his freedom to run his business in accordance with his faith.

Phillips is right. As Sherif Girgis and I explain in our new book from Oxford University Press, “Debating Religious Liberty and Discrimination,” acting on the belief that marriage is the union of husband and wife does not in itself entail “discriminating” on the basis of sexual orientation. Indeed, part of the problem is that liberals are simply calling anything they disagree with “discrimination.”

This overbroad definition of “discrimination” is part of what creates the problems for the free exercise of religion and free speech. And here a pattern holds: Legally coercing professionals serves no serious need, but works serious harms.

Conservative wedding providers are few and dwindling due to market pressures—and most important, they don’t refuse to serve LGBT patrons. In case after case, bakers have had no problem designing cakes for gay customers for every other occasion. It’s just that an exceedingly small number can’t in good conscience use their talents to help celebrate same-sex weddings by baking a cake topped with two grooms or two brides—or, as in this case, with rainbow filling.

Coercing these cultural dissidents has vanishingly small effects on the supply of products for any given couple, but it impinges seriously on particular vendors’ freedoms of speech, conscience, and religion. If any harm remains in leaving these wedding professionals free, it is only the tension we all face in living with people who disagree with us on the most personal matters.

As Girgis and I explain in our new book, America is in a time of transition. The Supreme Court has redefined marriage, and beliefs about human sexuality are changing. Now, the Supreme Court has the chance to protect the right to dissent and the civil liberties of those who speak and act in accord with what Americans had always previously believed about marriage—that it is the union of husband and wife.

Such a ruling would help achieve civil peace amid disagreement. It would protect pluralism and the rights of all Americans, regardless of what faith they may practice.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ryan T. Anderson/

Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D., is the William E. Simon Senior Research Fellow in American Principles and Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation, where he researches and writes about marriage, bioethics, religious liberty and political philosophy. Anderson is the author of several books and his research has been cited by two U.S. Supreme Court justices in two separate cases. Read his Heritage research.

Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon


Hypnotic

URL of the original posting site: http://comicallyincorrect.com/2017/06/20/hypnotic-media/#ydcqktuSlcVq4v2E.99

Democrats and the media, engage the Joseph Goebbels tactic of repeat a lie often enough people will believe it.

Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2017.

More A.F. Branco Cartoons at Net Right Daily.

A.F.Branco Coffee Table Book <—- Order Here!


TODAY’S POLITICALLY INCORRECT CARTOONS FROM TOWNHALL.COM

High School Grad Defies Administrators After They Told Her to Remove Jesus From Speech


URL of the original posting site: http://conservativetribune.com/high-school-grad-jesus/

For the past few years, there has been a disturbing trend in schools all across America where administration officials have attempted to silence those who want to talk about their Christian faith. The latest example of this repression of Christian beliefs occurred at Beaver High School in Beaver County, Pennsylvania, where the school officials tried to stop a student from including references to God in her commencement speech, Faithwire reported.

The administration initially wanted graduate Moriah Bridges to “remove all religious references” from her commencement address, including the words “God,” “Lord” and a prayer she had included. Effectively, they wanted her to silence Jesus.

The administration’s plan backfired though, because when Bridges actually gave the speech on June 2, she defied the administration and included a well-phrased reference to Jesus Christ.

“I’ve always been a rule follower,” Bridges stated at the end of her speech. “When they said not to chew gum, I didn’t chew gum. When they said not to use your cellphone, I didn’t use my cellphone. But today, in the spirit of defying expectations, and for perhaps the last time at this podium, I say, ‘in the righteous name of Jesus Christ, Amen.’”

You can watch the key part of Bridges’ speech here:

WTAE noted that Bridges is now being represented by “First Liberty,” a religious freedom law firm, which is demanding a meeting with school administration officials to change school policy.

The Beaver Area School District Superintendent, Carrie Rowe, released a statement on June 13th where he defended the actions of the administration.

“In Moriah’s case, the district could not approve a speech written as a prayer, but did approve a second version that she submitted,”  Rowe explained in the statement. “As superintendent, I took an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States and of this commonwealth.”

Rowe went on to state that she had been advised that prayer during a commencement address was “not permitted,” and that she “cannot choose which laws to follow.”

Bridges managed to silence the administration for 11 days. It took them that long to come up with a response to her act of defiance. You can read the full statement here.

It took a lot of courage for Bridges to stand up and profess her faith after the administration had instructed her not to. This world could use a few more people like Bridges who aren’t afraid to stand up for what they believe in.

H/T TheBlaze

 

The United States of…Not America


waving flagAuthored By: David Barton | Posted: Monday, February 20, 2017 1:40 PM

URL of the original posting site: http://www.afa.net/the-stand/government/2017/02/the-united-states-ofnot-america/

Here’s a simple question: “What is America’s first-protected, most-important, and longest-cherished politically-protected right?” The answer? The rights of religious conscience. But the Supreme Court of Washington State just became another in the line of recent courts who know nothing of, or don’t care about this inalienable right.

The early colonists arriving in America came largely seeking this right. In Europe, the governments consistently told them how to practice their faith, and punished them if they did not do what the government wanted; but the religious-minded colonists believed that no one but God could tell them how to practice their faith.

The Pilgrims journeyed to America in 1620 to escape the hounding government persecution in England, as did 20,000 Puritans in the 1630s. In 1632, government-persecuted Catholics fled to America; in 1654, persecuted Jews from Portugal; in 1680, persecuted Quakers arrived here, as did persecuted Anabaptists from Germany in 1683, 400,000 persecuted Protestants from France in 1685; and so forth. These settlers, having been punished for exercising their rights of religious conscience, promptly enshrined these rights in their own governing documents, including Rhode Island in 1640, Maryland in 1649, Jersey in 1664, Carolina in 1665, Pennsylvania in 1682, and so forth. As John Quincy Adams affirmed, “The transcendent and overruling principle of the first settlers of New England was conscience.”

In 1776 when America separated from Great Britain, the rights of religious conscience were once again promptly preserved in the new state constitutions and then in the federal Constitution. According to the Founding Fathers, this was one of the most important rights they protected:

“No provision in our Constitution ought to be dearer to man than that which protects the rights of conscience.” “[O]ur rulers can have no authority over such natural rights only as we have submitted to them. The rights of conscience we never submitted.” “It is inconsistent with the spirit of our laws and Constitution to force tender consciences.” Thomas Jefferson

“Government is instituted to protect property of every sort…Conscience is the most sacred of all property.” James Madison, Signer of the Constitution

“The rights of conscience and private judgment…are by nature subject to no control but that of Deity, and in that free situation they are now left.” John Jay, an Author of the Federalist Papers and original Chief Justice of the U. S. Supreme Court

“Consciences of men are not the objects of human legislation.” “The state [does not] have any concern in the matter. For in what manner doth it affect society . . . in what outward form we think it best to pay our adoration to God?” William Livingston, signer of the U. S. Constitution

Based on this long tradition, today . . .

Conscientious objectors are not forced to fight in wars;

Jehovah’s Witnesses are not required to say the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools;

The Amish are not required to complete the standard twelve years of education;

Christian Scientists are not forced to have their children vaccinated or undergo medical procedures often required by state laws;

Seventh-Day Adventists cannot be penalized for refusing to work on Saturday;

And there are many additional examples.

It was because the rights of religious conscience were so important that they were specifically protected in the constitutions of the individual states—such as that of Washington, which declares:

Absolute freedom of conscience in all matters of religious sentiment, belief, and worship shall be guaranteed to every individual; and no one shall be molested or disturbed in person or property on account of religion . . .

But despite the clarity of this clause, we now get word that the Washington Supreme Court has ruled that Baronelle Stutzman, a devout and pious Christian florist… was bound by state law to use her artistic talents to design floral arrangements to celebrate what she viewed as an immoral event: a gay wedding. The pretext for overriding the florist’s rights to free speech and religious liberty was Washington’s so-called “public accommodations law,” which required the owner, Barronelle Stutzman, to provide goods and services to customers “regardless” of their sexual orientation.Big Gay Hate Machine

Several things are wrong with this decision.

First, Baronelle has been economically-fined and governmentally-coerced to use her talents and skills in a way that violates her sincerely-held religious beliefs.

Second, the explicit wording of the Washington State constitution has been completely ignored by the Washington State Supreme Court. In essence, a Washington state court has deemed the Washington state constitution to be unconstitutional, just because they don’t want to uphold its provisions.

Third, the court elevated a state law (their “public accommodations law”) above the state constitution; but constitutions always trump statutory laws—always.

Fourth, John Adams described us as “a government of laws and not of men,” but decisions like this make us just the opposite: the personal predilections of judges are now routinely placed above constitutional provisions duly enacted by the people.

Two centuries ago, Thomas Jefferson rejoiced that “the comparison of our government with those of Europe are like a comparison of heaven and hell,” but this happy distinction is now disappearing. Because of this ruling (and dozens more like it in recent years), America is becoming more and more like the tyrannical governments of Europe that millions of early colonists fled in order to be free from the government persecution of their inalienable rights of religious conscience.amen

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

David Barton Author of numerous best selling books and Founder and President of WallBuilders More Articles
 

The culture war comes to a Tennessee high school football game


Football leaning on a football helmet in the grass / David Lee | Shutterstock

The scene: A high school football player lies injured on the ground. Just minutes before, he was doing the thing he would almost certainly choose to do above all else. Now he is seemingly paralyzed and unable to move his legs. The clock ticks. Nothing changes. A half hour passes, with the young man still lying on the field as the crowd looks on and grows increasingly uncomfortable with what the fates have in store. The situation appears hopeless.

Then, into that breach, steps another player. He asks a youth pastor in attendance at the game to offer a prayer. Gridiron opponents quickly become brothers-in-arms as players and coaches from both teams bow their head and call down aid from above. There is light in the darkness, and after the impromptu prayer huddle breaks with an “Amen,” the grateful crowd applauds.

But in that crowd is also someone for whom the consolations of God are a grievous offense. Where others see peace and possibility, they see a dire need to make the world flat. And so, anonymously of course, like a certain serpent in the garden, they make a call to the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF). A group based in Wisconsin that has been remarkably successful at doing what should be impossible: Convincing people that our country’s founding was based on godlessness.picture6 picture7

The prayer, the FFRF has charged along with the male complainant, is a violation of the Constitution. No matter that there is nothing even remotely resembling the establishment of a religion going on here. Or that this is exactly what the free exercise clause of the First Amendment is designed to protect.

Evil is on the march, and marching out in the open.

Because we don’t do open-and-shut cases anymore when it comes to the foundational principles of our country. We choke the life out of them.

We’ve been down this road over and over again. In case you haven’t heard, we even sue nuns now for not paying for other women to have sex. This is what eating from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil ultimately looks like in a culture bent on committing suicide, via the joyless crusade of the God-haters. They have traded a righteous inheritance for a cesspool and called it the dictates of “reason.” Yet that word most certainly doesn’t mean what they think it means. For these types of fools never seem to run out of ways to torpedo dignity and civility with their ugliness and folly. There’s nothing “reasonable” about that. Only sadness and wickedness.

Such a bad tree will produce bad fruit. Like a new investigative video, which revealed Planned Parenthood implementing abortion quotas to increase the number of dead babies at the hands of their modern-day holocaust. Including the use of pizza parties to motivate employees to sell and perform more murders. That is the pitch-black utopia the God-haters seek to sell us.

What a vile trade the usurpers of liberty are making. Prayer is oppression, while promoting violence against the innocent is lionized as fundamental to the future of democracy. And they’re not even pretend to hide it from us anymore. Evil is on the march, and marching out in the open. combined

The devil is telling us exactly who he is, and showing us the ash heap of history he desires to jettison us. Sadly, some of our fellow countrymen thunderously applause at this ode to the macabre. The Declaration of Independence is a dead letter to them, and the most fundamental right is to strip the world of any ultimate meaning other than the whims of the self.

“Ye will be like God,” said the serpent, with forked tongue. The same forked tongue being used to lie to us now. There’s always fine print, though, when it comes to that sort of Faustian bargain. And rest assured, the devil is always in those details.

Which brings me to another man of faith, who once said a prayer in the face of the laughter of those who did not believe. He uttered the phrase “Talitha Koum,” and a little girl rose from the dead to the wonderment of all. Good thing that didn’t happen on a public high school football field, or Jesus could have expected a strongly worded letter from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. And maybe even a court injunction to go along with his scourging and crown of thorns.

There are simply moments that belong to God alone to bring light to the darkness in our midst. Those in attendance at that high school football game in Tennessee recognized just such a moment when they fell on bended knee and sought out God’s mercy, and my prayer for them is this: May their righteous response to the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s jihad be to pray all the louder and all the more publicly in the future, and may that include praying for the souls of the God-haters who seek to persecute them. For God is just, and His justice cannot sleep forever.

amen

Will the Church Come Alive in 2017?


waving flagAuthored By: Walker Wildmon / Posted: Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Walker Wildmon Assistant to the President FollowMore Articles

While there is much work to be done in order to bring spiritual revival to America, I believe an awakening Church is the first step in this endeavor.

– Walker Wildmon

Most of us have ideas about how we’d like 2017 to look. Some would like to study Scripture on a more frequent basis.  Others would like to spend more time with their spouse or kids and some would like to improve their physical wellness by exercising. These are all great goals some of which I might actually be participating in myself. In general, I’d like to see myself become a better steward of my spiritual and physical well-being.

Along with these goals, I also have things that I’d like to see the Church in America move towards and see our country fulfill when it comes to public policy.

For years it has seemed as though the Church in general has been asleep. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of vibrant churches across this great land. For the past several decades a war has been fought over the forced acceptance of homosexuality and abortion. Since the dawn of creation God’s people have viewed all forms of sexual deviancy and the murder of innocent life as two horrific sins that cannot be accepted in the public square, much less in our churches. Christians have been in the cross hairs of this agenda and in return it has caused some to shrink back in order to avoid public shaming. I do not blame the world for our passiveness but I place the blame solely on the Church’s shoulders. The Bible mentions over and over again that we will face trials and difficulties because of our faith and that we must not grow weary (Galatians 6). I’m hopeful that the Church in America will come alive spiritually in the near future and become more engaged in making disciples (Romans 13).AMEN

Along with the Church coming alive spiritually, I’m hopeful that believers will activate themselves in the public policy arena to see laws passed which reflect constitutional, and more importantly, biblical principles. Some policies that come to mind regard abortion, school choice and religious freedom.

life-begins-at-conception

Image added by WhatDidYouSay.org

Abortion, while unconstitutional and barbaric has been legal since 1973 when the Supreme Court ruled on the well-known Roe v. Wade case. Simply because it is legal according to the Supreme Court and has been so for over forty years doesn’t mean we can’t fight to end abortion and save countless babies. Currently, the Supreme Court is split 4-4 between liberal and conservative justices but all it takes is President Trump appointing pro-life justices to one or two present and future vacancies on the high court to give us a pro-life constitutional majority. Assuming this occurs, Americans have a strong chance of seeing Roe v. Wade overturned and in return granting states the sole authority to regulate or outlaw abortion. In the meantime, Americans can pressure their congressmen and women and their senators to defund the largest abortion provider in the United States. Planned Parenthood and its affiliates perform more than 300,000 abortions per year, which amounts to approximately one out of every three in the country according to a Heritage Foundation report. The American Family Association issued a call to action recently which equips you with the proper tools to see that this organization receives no more taxpayer subsidies. Click here to take action.AMEN

School choice is a fairly simple issue. Families shouldn’t be stuck in a failing school system simply because of their zip code. If the federal government will remove itself from local education and allow states to enact school voucher policies, families will have more opportunities to excel in education. A voucher program will also create necessary competition between schools and districts that will almost instantly raise the bar higher, which will in turn improve the educational quality for our children. Taking a free market approach to schooling is necessary if we expect our schools and students to thrive. The Daily Signal published a great article titled “Education Made Simple: What is School Choice?”AMEN

Lastly, it is time for the marginalization of Christians by government officials and offices to end. Over the past eight years we’ve had florist, bakers, and pastors driven out of their occupation or even placed in jail (Kim Davis) for their beliefs. Members of congress have proposed legislation called the First Amendment Defense Act or FADA that “Prohibits the federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that: (1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or (2) sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.” In essence, this would put an end to federal judges and local courts forcing people of faith to either compromise their religious beliefs or face government sanctioned fees and penalties.AMEN

If the Church in America will awaken spiritually and become engaged, not only in the local church but also in the public arena, we could see some positive changes take place in America in the near future. Changes such as defunding Planned Parenthood, allowing school choice and advancing religious liberty will surely lift the weight of spiritual darkness that has covered this land for the past several decades. While there is much work to be done in order to bring spiritual revival to America, I believe an awakening Church is the first step in this endeavor.AMEN

On October 1st the USA Will Hand Over Control of the Internet, Endangering Free Speech – Call Congress Now!


waving flagBy Bethany Blankley September 7, 2016

obama- Marxist tyrantObama has once again broken federal law by instructing the U.S. Dept. of Commerce to relinquish U.S. control of the Internet’s Domain Name System to a ‘privatized’ international body, which will take place on October 1, 2016.

  • Call your senators: 202-224-3121.

  • Tell them to pass S.3034,“Protecting Internet Freedom Act.”

  • The United Nations and other countries have no authority to control access to information and eliminate Americans’rights protected by the First Amendment.

  • Obama broke the law. Americans have a constitutional right to free speech and freedom of the press.

Tyrant Obama

icann

Here’s what happened.

Congress ordered a federal agency (NTIA) to not let a government contract lapse– especially one that includes the IANA function (comparable to an “Internet phone book”), which has been managed by a non-profit organization in California since 1998. The agency chose not to comply with a Congress mandate. Meaning, a federal agency run by unelected bureaucrats ignored elected members of Congress, which is illegal. And Obama is doing nothing about it.

Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and NTIA (National Telecommunications & Information Administration) Administrator, Lawrence E. Strickling, confirmed that “the NTIA intends to allow the IANA functions contract to expire as of October 1.” Because the agency did not comply with Congress, and failed to renew its contract before the end of this month, the government will be illegally allowing the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to take over management of the IANA function.
(ICANN is “the private (non-government) non-profit corporation with responsibility for IP address space allocation, protocol parameter assignment, domain name system management, and root server system management functions, the services previously performed by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).”) The Commerce Department does not have the authority to “turn over control of the Internet to ICANN.” It’s against federal law.

The Washington Examiner reports that:

“the feds are constitutionally prohibited from transferring federal property without approval from Congress. A coalition of 25 advocacy groups like Americans for Tax Reform, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and Heritage Action sent a letter to Congress making those points last week.”

In response, the coalition of 25 advocacy groups maintain:kingobamafingerconstitution-300x204

“Congress twice enacted appropriations riders prohibiting any use of taxpayer funds ‘to relinquish the responsibility of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration [NTIA] … with respect to Internet domain name system functions, including responsibility with respect to the authoritative root zone file and the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority [IANA] functions.’

“We agree that Internet governance should work from the bottom up, driven by the global comm- unity of private sector, civil society and technical stakeholders. But that “multi-stakeholder” model is fragile. Without robust safeguards, Internet governance could fall under the sway of governments hostile to freedoms protected by the First Amendment.

“If NTIA allows the contract to lapse, it will have violated federal law (31 USC § 1341(a)(1)(A). See also 31 U.S.C § 1350).”

Sen. Ted Cruz (TX) – R introduced S.3034 on June 8, 2016. The bill has been read twice and was referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, which is ridiculous. It’s now the first week in September and the Senate still has not acted. If the Senate does not act they will be allowing a government agency to again break federal law and the very system the U.S. government created. This will end the U.S. government’s “historic role as a guarantor of Internet governance,” and eliminate any constitutional protections of free speech and freedom of the press.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Bethany Blankley

Bethany Blankley is a political analyst for Fox News Radio and has appeared on television and radio programs nationwide. She writes about political, cultural, and religious issues in America from the perspective of an evangelical and former communications staffer. She was a communications strategist for four U.S. Senators, one U.S. Congressman, a former New York governor, and several non-profits. She earned her MA in Theology from The University of Edinburgh, Scotland and her BA in Political Science from the University of Maryland. Follow her @bethanyblankley facebook.com/BlankleyBethany/ & BethanyBlankley.com.

House Panel Set To Consider Law Protecting Religious Americans From Discrimination


waving flagAuthored by Randy DeSoto June 30, 2016

Over a year after it was introduced, the First Amendment Defense Act, designed to protect Americans from being discriminated against by the federal government based on their religious beliefs, will soon get a hearing in the House of Representatives. The Daily Signal reports that the hearing is set for July 12 in the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.Happy Happy Joy Joy

The proposed legislation, H.R. 2802, prohibits;

“The federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that:

(1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or

(2) sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.”

 

H.R. 2802 lists specific discriminatory acts the federal government may not take, including:

  • Altering the federal tax treatment of, cause any tax, penalty, or payment to be assessed against, or deny, delay or revoke certain tax exemptions of any such person.

  • Disallowing a deduction of any charitable contribution made to or by such person.

  • Withholding, reducing, excluding, terminating, or otherwise denying any federal grant, contract, subcontract, cooperative agreement, loan, license, certification, accreditation, employment or similar position or status from or to such person.

  • Withholding, reducing, excluding, terminating or otherwise denying any benefit under a federal benefit program.

 

The bill currently has 171 co-sponsors, all of whom are Republican, save Rep. Daniel Lipsinski, D-Ill.

Dan Holler, with the conservative advocacy group Heritage Action for America, is encouraged that the committee is finally moving forward with a hearing and hopes the legislation will now be expedited. “Given the bill’s broad support, both on the committee and within the Republican conference as a whole, there is no reason for delay,” he said.

Sarah Warbelow, legal director for the pro-LGBT Human Rights Campaign, said of the bill when it was introduced, “Once again, House Republicans are pursuing an extreme agenda that is designed to harm LGBT families under the guise of religious freedom. The right to believe is fundamental. The right to use taxpayer dollars to discriminate is not.” Leftist Propagandist

Clearly, the organization would not be willing to accept the federal government denying a businesses or individuals contracts or tax benefits because they believed in or advocated for LGBT issues; however, it is supportive of allowing the federal government to do just that to people of faith.

A related issue came up in the House of Representatives in May when Rep. Sean Maloney, D-N.Y., offered legislation seeking to codify an executive order by President Obama barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers, with no exception for those with sincerely held religious beliefs.

The amendment passed with 40 Republicans joining the Democrats in a 223-195 win for Obama; however, the overall bill it was attached to was soundly defeated, so the amendment did not become law.

H.R. 2802 may be able to garner broader support because it zeroes in on specific discriminatory acts by the federal government against religious Americans. Liberal objections to religious liberty measures passed in certain states in recent years have centered on concerns that business owners, based on their religious beliefs, would be allowed to discriminate against LGBT customers.

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Liberal Gun Control Arguments SHUT DOWN With 1 EPIC Meme


waving flagBy: Wilmot Proviso on June 23, 2016

URL of the original posting site: http://conservativetribune.com/gun-control-shut-down/

In the social media gun control wars of 2016, the great liberal argument has been that the Second Amendment was designed by founding fathers who simply couldn’t foresee a gun like the AR-15 being invented.

Never mind, of course, that the AR-15 wasn’t used in the Orlando terrorist shooting, or the fact that Democrats and liberals know so little about guns that they can barely talk about them without making a serious mistake.

There’s also the fact that they’re discounting that the founding fathers didn’t put it that way when they wrote the Second Amendment, as a new meme pointed out.

Exactly:

musket meme eric

The Second Amendment does not read“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed, unless the gun looks really scary and fires bullets that aren’t musket balls, and you can load more than one bullet at a time, and — really, why do you need a gun? Let’s pass some gun control laws.”

The Second Amendment wasn’t just an afterthought for the founding fathers. It was one of the cornerstones of the Bill of Rights — the one amendment that would make sure all of the others weren’t violated.

The founders weren’t ignorant men, either. They studied military history and knew the pace of progress. They knew that more advanced firearms were coming, and they hoped that they were writing a document for a nation that would survive hundreds, if not thousands, of years.

To say that they hadn’t seen weapons like the AR-15 coming is to dramatically underestimate their foresight.

And yet, nobody challenges the Bill of Rights on any of the other counts. Free speech is so much freer in 2016 than it was in the 1700s, but most of us don’t believe it’s time to do away with the First Amendment.

So, as this meme demonstrates — if you want to complain about the Second Amendment not being designed for modern weapons, get off the computer and write me out a letter. Or, better yet, stop complaining.

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Calif. school calls sheriff to stop 7-year-old from handing out Bible verses


waving flagBy Joe Newby – June 4, 2016

BibleIt seems the First Amendment right to free speech and freedom of religion is officially dead, at least in one California school district.

On Thursday, Liberty Counsel said that officials with the Desert Rose Elementary School were so upset over notes containing Bible verses they called the local sheriff to make it stop.

According to Liberty Counsel:

The situation started with an encouraging note and Bible verse from mom Christina Zavala, tucked into a packed lunch for her little boy (“C”). The seven-year-old boy read the note and verse, and showed them to his friends during lunch time at school.

Mrs. Zavala’s daily note for her son soon turned into an expectation by the other children during lunch, who excitedly begged C for copies of the notes, which grew to include short stories from the Bible to provide context for the verses.

However, when one little girl said “teacher – this is the most beautiful story I’ve ever seen,” “separation of church and state” was the response, and the notes were banned from lunchtime distribution. C was told that the school gate was the only location at which he could give the Bible verses to his friends, and only after the bell rang.Combined

In April, Liberty Counsel said, Mrs. Zavala wrote to say the situation was corrected, but the school informed her that her son was reprimanded in front of the class and ordered to stop talking about his religion or sharing her notes.

The story continues:

The Zavalas and C complied with the school gate directive, and soon, as many as 15 fellow students looked forward to the after-school Bible notes. However, on May 9, 2016, Principal Melanie Pagliaro approached Mr. Zavala at that location, and demanded that C only hand out the notes on a public sidewalk, far from the exit, off school property. The family immediately complied.Gaged by the Left

But it got a whole lot worse (Emphasis added):

Later that day, however, a Los Angeles Deputy Sheriff knocked at the door of C’s home, demanding that C’s note sharing cease altogether because someone might be offended.” C’s family then asked Liberty Counsel to help protect their child’s constitutional freedoms.

“This is a clear, gross violation of the rights of a child,” Liberty Counsel said.  “That the CP 01school district enlisted a police officer to intimidate C and his family makes this case even more outrageous.”

“I would expect something like this to happen in Communist Romania, where I went to elementary school, but cops don’t bully 7-year-olds who want to talk about Jesus in the Land of the Free,” said Horatio “Harry” Mihet, Esq., Vice President of Legal Affairs & Chief Litigation Counsel of Liberty Counsel.

Liberty Counsel has sent the Palmdale school board a letter demanding they correct this breach of the boy’s Constitutional rights.

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Liberals FREAK After Vets Set Up “Muslim Free” Zone… Cops Issue EPIC Response


waving flagBy: V Saxena on April 12, 2016

URL of the original posting site: http://conservativetribune.com/vets-set-up-muslim-free-zone

Unfortunately for them, the authorities in resident Troy Maxham’s town of Roxbury refused courtesy something proud patriots like to call the First Amendment.

“Local officials have said there’s nothing they can do about the sign because it’s considered free speech protected by the First Amendment,” The Barre Montpelier Times Argus explained.

Sorry liberals, but what’s good for the Black Lives Matter movement is also good for Maxham, a veteran who said he distrusts Muslims.

The issue originally arose because the U.S. Army veteran lives close to a major state highway, meaning a lot of people see his sign every day.

Still A Muslim Free Zone Sign

“While the sign is on private property, it is in public view, and its message is in direct conflict with the values we as Americans are supposed to hold dear,” Regina Logan, who lives in the nearby town of Braintree, complained in a letter to The Times Argus.Militent Radical liberalism socialism

So what? The sign’s message only applies to Maxham’s home. Moreover, forcing him to remove the sign would be a violation of his First Amendment right. Yeah, sorry, but Americans also value the right to free speech, Miss Logan.

Speaking of which, one resident responded to the veteran’s sign in a far more ingenious way — by making his own signs that promote tolerance and asking residents throughout town if they would put one up on their property.

Let this guy’s behavior serve as a fine example to all Americans. When you see a sign that you find offensive, you have two options: Whine like a baby, or exercise your own First Amendment rights and put up your own sign with a counter-message. It’s that simple and that easy.

Picture1 true battle Picture1 In God We Trust freedom combo 2

Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon


waving flagGuard On Duty

Scalia The Guardian of the 1st and 2nd amendment, how will Obama’s choice measure up?

Scalia The Guardian / Political Cartoon by A.F.Branco ©2016.

More A.F.Branco Cartoons at Net Right Daily.

 A.F.Branco Coffee Table Book <—- Order Here!

kingobamafingerconstitution-300x204 Imperial President Obama obama- Marxist tyrant Tyrant Obama Cloward Pevin with explanation Free Speech Definition Clinton Democrat Party Partyof Deceit Spin and Lies Picture1 democrat problem Indenification of Obama destruction unfit Tytler cycle cdr modified 071712 In God We Trust freedom combo 2

Christians! We Don’t Live Under Caesar


waving flagWritten by Gary DeMar, Feb 1, 2016

URL of the original posting site: http://constitution.com/christians-we-dont-live-under-caesar

Every political year, religion becomes an issue. It’s been that way since the founding of our nation. There’s no escaping religion and politics. Everyone is religious. Every law on the books is an application of someone’s view of religion (the ultimate basis of a person’s belief system) and an expression of their view of morality.

What is the source of a person’s worldview, their ultimate commitment? It’s a question that’s rarely asked. And yes, atheists are just as religious as the most fundamentalist Christian. Atheists are fundamentalist materialists, and so-called Progressives are fundamentalist secularists. What they believe is fundamental to their worldview.

There are Christians who are calling on their fellow-Christians to disengage from politics or to acquiesce to the political status quo and suffer under its oppression because we are just wanderers in this world on our way to the next world. Secularists also want Christians to disengage, and will often quote Jesus’ words “to render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s.”

No doubt Christians prefer to live a quiet life, as the apostle Paul wrote (1 Tim. 2:1–4). They would prefer not to have to expend time, energy, and money to fight laws that one day could end up limiting their freedoms.

These instructions to the young pastor Timothy did not stop Paul from challenging political reprisals raised against him (Acts 22:23-30). He even appealed to Caesar in a time when the majority of Jews had no political standing (25:11-12). Paul made use of his Roman citizenship (22:28), something few Jews had, as we should take advantage of our own citizenship rights. Christians aren’t second-class citizens or subjects to a foreign power (at least not yet). We’re not devoid of a political right to act, either biblically or constitutionally.AMEN

What about the argument that we are to “render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” (Matt. 22:21)? First, this statement tells us that not everything belongs to Caesar. Second, Jesus also says that we are to “render to God the things that are God’s.” Caesar is equally obligated.

Third, we don’t live under Caesar, a king, or governors sent by a king (1 Peter 2:13-14). We live under the Constitution of the United States that gives us the right — as the First Amendment states — to speak, write, and assemble to “petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

It would not be inappropriate to render Matthew 22:21 like this: “Then render to the Constitution the things that are the Constitution’s; and to God the things that are God’s.”AMEN

The Constitution is our Caesar, and those who take an oath to uphold the Constitution must render to it. In addition, we have a right and duty to hold our elected officials accountable to their oath. And unlike most Jews in the Apostle Paul’s day, we have the ability to change our government (Caesar) every two years at the national and local levels.

Reverend Jacob Duché (1737–1798) and the First Prayer of the Continental Congress (1774)

There used to be a time when we did live a quiet and tranquil life because Christians engaged their world culturally and politically. The goal has never been to save the world through politics but to define civil government’s limited political role. Christians who refuse to engage politically by default turn over the reins of authority and power to those who believe in a secular theocracy where civil government becomes the new god, and the laws of this secular god are imposed on the citizenry.

What if a government starts molesting people for their beliefs or actions? What should a Christian do? The slave trade, the holocaust, and racial discrimination come to mind. The anti-slave trade was headed up by Christians. Study the life ofWilliam Wilberforce(1759–1833). So was the civil rights movement. Were Christians wrong to oppose these moral evils? Why was Israel judged if the people were not to be involved politically?: 

How the faithful city has become a harlot,
She who was full of justice!
Righteousness once lodged in her,
But now murderers.
Your silver has become dross,
Your drink diluted with water.
Your rulers are rebels
And companions of thieves;
Everyone loves a bribe
And chases after rewards.
They do not defend the orphan,
Nor does the widow’s plea come before them (Isa. 1:21-23).

Resistance movements like those practiced by Christians during World War II have been accepted as morally justified by nearly all ethical thinkers. Thomas Kineally’s Schindler’s Ark (later made into the film Schindler’s List by Steven Spielberg) shows the highest praise for those who defied what was a “legal” government policy.

Corrie ten Boom and her familycome to mind:

“Corrie ten Boom has long been honored by evangelical Christians as an exemplar of Christian faith in action. Arrested by the Nazis along with the rest of her family for hiding Jews in their Haarlem home during the Holocaust, she was imprisoned and eventually sent to the Ravensbruck concentration camp along with her beloved sister, Betsie, who perished there just days before Corrie’s own release on December 31, 1944.”

In Give Me the Children: How a Christian Woman Saved a Jewish Family During the Holocaust, Pola Arbiser describes how her nanny defied the law and hid her and her sister from Nazi officers. The Jewish community of survivors has described these resistors as “righteous gentiles” ((As reported in Catherine E. Shoichet, “Christian nanny hid Jewish family from Nazis,” Atlanta Journal-Constitution (August 27, 2003), E1 and E6. See Pola Arbiser, Give Me the Children: How A Christian Woman Saved a Jewish Family During the Holocaust (Altona, Manitoba, Canada: Friesens, 2003).)) or simply “Christian rescuers.” ((David P. Gushee, “Christians as Rescuers During the Holocaust,” Must Christianity Be Violent?: Reflections on History, Practice, and Theology, eds. Kenneth R. Chase and Alan Jacobs (Grand Rapids, MI: Brazos Press, 2003), 71.)) These actions were considered to be moral even though they violated Nazi Reich law.

When the allied troops liberated the death camps and saw the atrocities, the soldiers went into the surrounding towns and forced the citizens to walk among the corpses. It was happening right under their noses and they did nothing to stop it. That wasn’t the “tranquil and quiet life” Paul was talking about.

AMEN

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Young Boy Stands Up For Trump- Then His Teacher Does Something Sickening In Response


waving flagReported by Kevin Whitson January 25, 2016

Western Journalism has reported in the past on liberals who target conservatives’ exercising of their freedom of speech, as well as freedom of the press on college campuses. Now, according to one 11-year-old caller to the Rush Limbaugh show, liberals are apparently going after pre-teens’ exercise of their freedom of speech.

An 11-year-old named Matthew, whose last name has not been released, spoke to Limbaugh on his radio show Friday. According to Matthew, his teacher asked for students to write the names of visionaries on the board. Some students wrote down names like Pope Francis and Rosa Parks, but Matthew chose Donald Trump. The student said he was immediately accosted by his teacher, who demanded that he erase Trump’s name from the board.

Matthew said his teacher then asked him what Trump ever did for anyone. He responded by saying that Trump was a successful businessman, and had built many beautiful buildings all around the world. He defended his view that Trump was a visionary, specifically mentioning his plans to close the borders by building a border wall with Mexico, and to put an end to ISIS.

Matthew had to erase Trump’s name, and was taken aback by the experience. He also said his classmates called him an idiot for supporting Trump.

“And she made me erase it. I’m thinking like, ‘Wait, why is…? I thought I had freedom of speech.  I mean, an anchor baby gets citizenship. Why don’t I?’ I kind of got mad after that. And people are targeting me, they’re saying, ‘Donald Trump’s sucks and you do too,’ and I really don’t know what to do,” he recountedATTA BOY

Stating that he didn’t want to disobey his teacher, Matthew told Limbaugh, “Well, she forced me to erase it because I didn’t want to disobey the teacher. But, I mean, I don’t exactly like backing down that much and I was kind of disturbed by that.”

Limbaugh encouraged Matthew to stay strong: “Well, it’s an honor to have you in the audience, and there’s no question about that. You’re very, very mature. Your parents gotta be so proud of you. You just continue to stay — I can’t believe I’m saying this to an 11-year-old — you just stay dedicated to what you truly believe, understanding that all kinds of people are gonna insult you or tell you you’re wrong.”

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Amherst Activists Demand Re-Education For Students Who Celebrated Free Speech


waving flagReported by Blake Neff, Reporter; 11/13/2015

Burning_Constitution

Burning_Constitution

A group of protesters at Amherst College in Massachusetts has released a set of demands that include punishing students who produced a poster celebrating free speech by subjecting them to re-education for the sake of “racial and cultural competency.”Delusional Mental Illness Gibberish

In response to ongoing protests at the University of Missouri, which saw an attack on journalists Monday trying to cover the event, some students at Amherst this week put up small posters on campus. The posters read “In memoriam of the true victim of the Missouri protests: Free Speech (1776-2015),” and included a short “eulogy” which reads as follows:

Who is constrained by the invisible barriers of our generation’s safe spaces.

Censored for the open forum of non-conflicting opinions.

Trod upon to build a community of comfort.

And violently persecuted for a safer, less vitriolic world.

Let us honor the life of the first amendment, and the heroes that it protected:

Journalists, Educators, Philosophers, and Free Thinkers everywhere.free speech

The poster never mentions race, and ends with a short quip “If you want to protest this sign, feel free. Because that’s why the First Amendment exists.”Different Free Speech Ideologies

But Amherst activists want to do far more than proest. They want the people responsible for the poster punished, along with those responsible for producing signs which said “All Lives Matter.” A coalition of more than 50 campus groups held a “sit-in” Thursday night, which led to them producing a lengthy list of demands that includes punishing anybody who made the signs:

“President [Biddy] Martin must issue a statement to the Amherst College community at large that states we do not tolerate the actions of student(s) who posted the ‘All Lives Matter’ posters, and the ‘Free Speech’ posters,” the list of demands says. “Also let the student body know that it was racially insensitive to the students of color on our college campus and beyond who are victim to racial harassment and death threats; alert them that Student Affairs may require them to go through the Disciplinary Process if a formal complaint is filed, and that they will be required to attend extensive training for racial and cultural competency.”foolishness

Let that sink in: A poster celebrating the First Amendment was “racially insensitive” and requires “extensive training for racial and cultural competency.”

Students demand a great deal more as well. They request that Amherst’s honor code be updated to include “reflect a zero-tolerance policy for racial insensitivity and hate speech,” meaning students could be punished and perhaps expelled for racial insensitivity, which apparently includes defending free speech. They also demand that the school suppress its unofficial sports mascot Lord Jeff, whom they say has an “inherent racist nature.”What did you say 07.jpg

The demands are endorsed by students from more than 50 Amherst student groups, including the Black Students Union, Amherst United Left, and Amherst Christian Fellowship.More Liberal Gibberish

Amherst has been given until Nov. 18 to respond to the student protesters. If the school considers any punishment of faculty, staff, or administrators who support them, they warn it will “result in an escalation of our response.”

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The Constitutional “Shall Not’s” of Congress


waving flagWritten by Bethany Blankley

shall notVigilance-2

Universal human rights are determined by government restraint. In what areas of human life should the government not be involved? What areas of life must the government not regulate, not restrain, not limit, not oversee, not implement, not subsidize, not legalize or make illegal? Interestingly, the first five words of the Bill of Rights state what Congress cannot do: “Congress shall make no law… .” Even more telling– the first ten amendments, with perhaps The Sixth as the exception, all define what the government cannot do:

  • First: “Shall make no law … prohibiting … abridging,
  • Second: “Shall not be infringed”
  • Third: “No soldier shall … without the consent …”
  • Fourth: “Shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue …”
  • Fifth: “No person shall be held … nor shall any person be subject …”
  • Seventh: “Shall be preserved … No fact … shall be otherwise reexamined …”
  • Eighth: “Shall not be required … Nor excessive … imposed, nor … punishments inflicted”
  • Ninth: “shall not be construed to deny or disparage”
  • Tenth: “Not delegated … nor prohibited.”

The third, fifth, eighth, and tenth amendments don’t state “rights;” they state what authority the government does not have. In effect, limits on government are universal human rights. The Constitution outlines specific areas of human life that are off-limits to government. This suggests that there are certain aspects of human life which are fundamentally free.tie it down

The Constitution did not outline rights or prohibitions defined by a government that could later redefine them. It outlined rules to be followed by a self-ruling people in addition to separating and balancing political authority among judiciary, legislative, and executive branches.

Despite the limits the Founders enumerated in the Constitution, their limits are still limited in their ability to constrain government overreach. Matters of conscience, especially as they relate to the First Amendment, dictate certain situations when citizens decide to not follow and/or disobey unjust laws. Interestingly, dissent in the form of collective actions of conscience (refusing to pay taxes, boycotting specific products, and armed resistance) among approximately one third of American colonists who fought for independence.Tree of Liberty 03

The Constitution was the result of a point in time that the Founding Fathers and Framers identified of a line they could not cross. They could not comply in good conscience– it would be immoral to comply– with the laws of a corrupt and tyrannical government. Christians joined them, citing New Testament directives, identifying that they also must only “obey God rather than men.”christianity

They recognized they could not selectively disobey certain laws because the government itself could not be obeyed. They needed a new government. Rebellion and resistance were required because the ruling authorities had rebelled against God. The government had not only violated basic principles of justice but also had squandered God-given human rights, rendering itself illegitimate.

Thomas Jefferson asserted:

“Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long Established, should not be changed for light and transient causes; and, Accordingly, all experience [has] shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

“But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations,  pursuing invariably the same object, evidences a design to reduce [the people] under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.”

Jefferson also said, “Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.”

The Shall Nots were imperative to the Founders– they wanted to ensure that if Congress violated them the people had just cause to rebel.

two ways to enslave a nation theBible moral people John-Adams-Quote-Liberty-Lost1 John-Adams-Poster-Principles-of-Freedom JohnAdamsFaithQuote4 freedom democracy freedom combo 2

Bill of Rights’ Most Important Liberty: Religion


waving flagWritten by Bethany Blankley

John-Adams-Quote-Liberty-Lost1

The Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the Constitution, listed non-negotiable constitutionally guaranteed freedoms in specific order, unchanged since 1791. James Madison, its chief architect, listed freedom of religion first; then speech, press, assembly, petition, right to keep and bear arms, and freedom from forced quartering of military members in one’s home.

Freedom from civil government overreach and interference was essential to establishing sustainable civil order and a just rule of law; the first ten amendments — only 468 words — were added to protect what the founders considered “preexisting rights” from federal government “encroachment.”

Freedom of religion was un-mistakenly listed as the first freedom of the Bill of Rights. And the term “religion” was well understood from its original context derived from the State of Virginia’s Bill of Rights. In Article 1, Section 16, Virginia’s Bill of Rights defines “religion” as “the duty which we owe to our Creator… the manner of discharging… [of which] can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence.”

(Many significant words and phrases used to write the Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution were selected from preexisting documents and individual state constitutions’ declaration of rights, which provided more detailed definitions.)

Virginia’s Bill of Rights legally defined “religion” as a means to secure freedom from government coercion, which enabled a foundational protection for other freedoms. The Bill of Rights, by defining religion, allows people to believe and act by “reason or conviction” without fear of being coerced to violate their “dictates of conscience.” In this way, religion is jurisdictional– the Bill of Rights ensures that the government cannot force a citizen to violate his/her conscience.AAA02

James Madison articulated in Memorial and Remonstrance:

“The Religion … of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as they may indicate. This right in its nature is an unalienable right. It is unalienable; because the opinions of men … cannot follow the dictates of other men: It is unalienable also; because what is here a right towards men, is a duty towards the Creator. … This duty is precedent both in order of time and degree of obligation, to the claims of Civil Society.”GOD

Madison believed that citizens were first “subject[s] of the Great Governor of the Universe,” who must first make his/her “allegiance to the Universal Sovereign” before they could consider being a “member of Civil Society.”ONE NATION

He considered religion first and foremost “immune” from any and all civil authorities. The wording used for the First Amendment’s two religion clauses were specifically straightforward: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof …” All matters of religion were exempted from civil authority.

Madison asserted:

“In matters of Religion, no man’s right is abridged by the institution of Civil Society, and that Religion is wholly exempt from its cognizance.”

want_rel_liberty_rAs a legal and jurisdictional matter, Madison asserted that all men are first subject to God as an immutable fact based on the Christian worldview (Mark 12:17, Psalm 24:1). It was imperative to specify that no government could ever have authority over one’s relationship with God. Understanding that even governmental authority itself originates from God (Romans 13:1) — moral standards could not be mutually exclusive from rule of law.

Furthermore, freedom of conscience, under the jurisdiction of freedom of religion, established the next four freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment. They include freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom to peacefully assemble, and freedom to petition the government for a redress of grievances. These four freedoms granted constitutional security for “residual sovereignty” of the people, not the government. The Bill of Rights ensured freedom of religion as the foundation for all other liberties. No other amendments were possible if freedom of religion had not first been guaranteed as an unalienable right.One Nation Under God

Bethany Blankley; http://BethanyBlankley.com

Bethany Blankley is a political analyst for Fox News Radio and has appeared on television and radio programs nationwide. She writes about political, cultural, and religious issues in America. She worked on Capitol Hill for four U.S. Senators and one U.S. Congressman, for a former New York governor, and for several non-profits. She earned her masters degree in theology from The University of Edinburgh, Scotland and her bachelors degree in politics from the University of Maryland. Follow her @bethanyblankley & BethanyBlankley.com.049590d9aa5e45170821a5ba6f11ac12  SCOTUS Death lost forever liberty 

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Kansas Governor Brownback Issues Order Protecting Beliefs of Clergy About Same-Sex “Marriage”


waving flagWritten by  , Friday, 10 July 2015 

URL of the original posting site: http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/constitution/item/21236-kansas-gov-brownback-issues-order-protecting-beliefs-of-clergy-about-same-sex-marriage

Kansas Governor Brownback Issues Order Protecting Beliefs of Clergy About Same-Sex “Marriage”

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback issued an executive order on July 7 that prohibits the state government from taking any action against any individual clergy, religious leader, or religious organization that “acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman.” The governor said his order protects “Kansas clergy and religious organizations from being forced to participate in activities that violate their sincerely and deeply held beliefs.”

Brownback issued the executive order, entitled “Preservation and Protection of Religious Freedom,” in response to last month’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, mandating recognition of same-sex “marriage” in all 50 states. In the order, he cited the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, Section Seven of the Bill of Rights of the Kansas Constitution, and the Kansas Preservation of Religious Freedom Act (which he signed in 2013), all of which protect the religious liberty of Kansans. He quoted from the latter, which provides that state government shall not “substantially burden a person’s civil right to exercise of religion.”

Building on that legal foundation, Brown noted that “the recent imposition of same sex marriage by the United States Supreme Court poses potential infringements on the civil right of religious liberty” and that “government actions and laws that protect the free exercise of religious beliefs about marriage will encourage private citizens and institutions to demonstrate tolerance for those beliefs and convictions and therefore contribute to a more respectful, diverse, and peaceful society.”burke

Getting down to specifics, Brownback ordered:

The State Government shall not take any discriminatory action against any individual clergy or religious leader on the basis that such individual declines or will decline to perform, solemnize, or facilitate any marriage, based upon or consistent with the individual’s sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction

The four Catholic bishops in Kansas issued a joint statement urging state officials to make the enactment of new legal protections for those who are opposed in conscience to same-sex marriage a top priority in coming months. The bishops praised Brownback’s order and said in a statement: “Generations of Americans have taken freedom of conscience for granted. We, sadly, do not have that luxury anymore.”It HasNever Been About Marriage

Texas Governor Greg Abbott recently issued a similar memo to all agency heads in his state, granting state employees who object on moral grounds to same-sex marriage some protection against the ruling. Abbott’s memo stated: “All state agency heads should ensure that no one acting on behalf of their agency takes any adverse action against any person, as defined in Chapter 311 of the Texas Government Code, on account of the person’s act or refusal to act that is substantially motivated by sincere religious belief.”Big Gay Hate Machine

While orders such as Brownback’s and Abbott’s mitigate some of the most harmful effects of the Supreme Court’s overreaching decision on same-sex “marriage” — about which Justice Samuel Alito said in his dissent, “The Constitution leaves that question to be decided by the people of each State” — they fall far short of other remedies available to the states. One such remedy is nullification, a little-used technique in recent history, but a viable one nevertheless. As Joe Wolverton noted in a recent article for The New American on the prospect of states using nullification to resist the application of Obergefell v. Hodges within their borders:Leftist Giant called Tyranny

Nullification, whether through active acts passed by the legislatures or the simple refusal to obey unconstitutional directives, is the “rightful remedy” for the ill of federal usurpation of authority. Americans committed to the Constitution must walk the fences separating the federal and state governments and they must keep the former from crossing into the territory of the latter.

Wolverton cited no less an authority on the Constitution than Thomas Jefferson to support the legitimacy of nullification, quoting from the Founding Father’s statement in the Kentucky Resolutions:

That the several states who formed that instrument [the Constitution], being sovereign and independent, have the unquestionable right to judge of its infraction; and that a nullification, by those sovereignties, of all unauthorized acts done under colour [sic] of that instrument, is the rightful remedy.

Though nullification is a valid, constitutional option, no state has thus far made an attempt to apply the principal to Obergefell v. Hodges. Granted, it has been only a few weeks since the decision was made, and such matters take time. However, that is all the more reason why serious discussions to consider that possibility should now be taking place.SCOTUS GIANT

One of the strongest statements suggesting nullification came from former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas), who said on Newsmax TV’s The Steve Malzberg Show shortly before the High Court handed down its decision that the states should ignore any Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage. “A ruling by the Supreme Court is nothing but an opinion if the legislative branch and the executive branch do not enforce it,” said DeLay. “Not only that, if the states would just invoke the 10th Amendment and assert their sovereignty, they can defy a ruling by the Supreme Court. It’s in the Constitution. We can tell the court what cases they can hear.”

What DeLay described regarding telling the federal courts which cases they can hear is governed not by the 10th Amendment, which protects the sovereignty of the states, but by Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution, which gives Congress the power to make exceptions to and regulate the jurisdiction of the federal courts. Former Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) attempted to utilize this power when he introduced his We the People Act in 2004 and 2009. The bill, if it had passed, would have removed jurisdiction of federal courts from cases involving the establishment of religion, sexual orientation, abortion, and marriage.

Invoking such power made more practical sense when DeLay mentioned it prior to Obergefell v. Hodges being decided. Since the court has now ruled, it would be difficult to rescind its jurisdiction to decide on marriage cases retroactively. However it is not too late to use the other tool that DeLay recommended, the 10th Amendment, to which Justice Alito alluded when he said, “The Constitution leaves that question to be decided by the people of each State.”

If the decision should be decided by the states, then the states must declare that the power usurped by the Supreme Court in rendering that decision is null. Leftist Giant called Tyranny

Related articles:

Political Leaders Voice Discontent With Supreme Court Marriage Ruling

Catholic Leaders Vow to Stand Against Contraception Mandate, Same-sex Marriage

Texas AG: “Reach of Court’s Opinion Stops at the Door of the First Amendment”

Supreme Court Rubber Stamps Same-sex “Marriage” — Time for Nullification

Rome: Hundreds of Thousands Protest Against Same-sex Unions

Marriage Can’t Be Redefined

Sen. Lee and Rep. Labrador Propose Protection for Religious Liberty

Southern Baptist Leader: Prepare for Civil Disobedience Over Gay Marriage Ruling

As Gov. of Texas, Would Abbott Continue to Stand for States’ Rights?

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Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon


waving flagArticle One

Franklin Graham decries Christian bakers’ beat-down


waving flagPosted By Cheryl Chumley On 07/06/2015

Article printed from WND: http://www.wnd.com

URL of the original posting site: http://www.wnd.com/2015/07/franklin-graham-decries-christian-bakers-beat-down

aaron_melissa_klein

Samaritan’s Purse president Franklin Graham, who also heads up the world-wide Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, called the recent ruling against a husband-wife Christian cake-baking team an utter travesty for the First Amendment, and said the plaintiffs in the case – two lesbians – ought to be the ones paying the government-issued fine.

Graham was reacting on his Facebook page to the Oregon Bureau of Labor & Industries ruling against Aaron and Melissa Klein, owners of “Sweet Cakes by Melissa” who, in 2013, declined to make a cake for a lesbian wedding. The lesbians turned to the government for redress, and last week, after two years of fighting, the Kleins were ordered to pay $135,000 to the lesbians, in part to account for their stated pain and suffering, as WND previously reported.

Graham found the ruling ludicrous.

He wrote: “This is unbelievable! … Brad Avakian, Oregon’s Bureau of Labor & Industries Commissioner, upheld [the previous] ruling that the Kleins have to pay the lesbian couple $135,000 for a long list of alleged damages including:

  • ‘acute loss of confidence,’

  • ‘high blood pressure,’

  • ‘impaired digestion,’

  • ‘loss of appetite,’

  • ‘migraine headaches,’

  • ‘pale and sick at home after work,’

  • ‘resumption of smoking habit,’

  • ‘weight gain,’ and

  • ‘worry.’

Give me a break. In my opinion, this couple should pay the Kleins $135,000 for all they’ve been through!”cp 11

Graham also pointed to another facet of the ruling as potentially dangerous to the future of the First Amendment’s freedom of speech clause.

On that, he said: “Even more outrageous is that Avakian has also now ordered the Kleins to ‘cease and desist’ from speaking publicly about not wanting to bake cakes for same-sex weddings based on their Christian beliefs. This is an outright attack on their ‪#‎freedomofspeech‬. A senior attorney with the The Heritage Foundation was absolutely right when he said, ‘It is exactly this kind of oppressive persecution by government officials that led the pilgrims to America.’”Leftist Giant called Tyranny

He called for believers to pray for the Kleins, who are planning an appeal, as well as for other Christians who are currently fighting to maintain their religious freedom rights in the supposed “land of the free” known as America, he said.


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What founders want to teach Obama this July 4


waving flagPosted By author-image Chuck Norris On 06/28/2015

Article printed from WND: http://www.wnd.com

URL to article: http://www.wnd.com/2015/06/what-founders-want-to-teach-obama-this-july-4

I commend President Obama for giving the eulogy at the funeral of Rev. Clementa Pinckney, who was gunned down along with eight other precious souls during a Bible study at their Charleston Church. Obama said some honorable and moving words about the fallen. He also spoke at length about amazing grace – and even sang about it.

But then he stirred what I call the nebulous and confusing religious pot by stating: “If we can find that grace, anything is possible. If we contacted that grace – can tap that grace, everything can change.”

“If we can find”? “If we contacted … can tap”? “If”?

The president is right that “anything is possible” and “everything can change” with God’s amazing grace. But he ought not to have spoken with such ambiguity, doubt and conditionality as “if” finding grace were wishing upon a star or discovering a needle in a haystack.

America’s founders – as well as most presidents throughout history – were unequivocally certain about the role of faith in our republic. They were without hesitation or doubt when they spoke about the bedrock of religion in society and human hearts. Our founders knew without it, they were sunk as well as our nation.

On the eve of another Independence Day, I think it’s critical that we reconsider exactly how our founders expected religion to breathe life into our nation and play out in society. If we don’t, we run the risk of crippling our country and shredding it at its seams. Indeed, we’ve already traveled too far down the road of religious degradation by omitting God from classrooms to historic monuments. We have also bastardized our founders’ first tenet of religion (First Amendment) and totally abandoned their understanding and call for its primary purpose in our republic. Let me explain.

Our founders’ first tenet of religion is captured in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. You know the words: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” In short, religious liberty will reign in our new nation. Congress shall protect individuals from forced sectarianism unlike it was done in England, and choice and freedom are to be protected and secured from the tyranny of government.burke

Well, that isn’t our First Amendment today, or at least how most secular progressives interpret it. They explain and use it solely as a buffer from keeping religious opinion or discussion – in any way, shape or form – out of every governmental or public arena. But that is the polar opposite of the First Amendment’s very purpose, which was to protect and preserve religious practice and liberty in any place, including in the halls of government.

As I wrote in my New York Times best-seller, “Black Belt Patriotism,” though Jefferson is generally hailed as the chief of church-state separation, proof that Jefferson was not trying to rid government of religious (specifically Christian) influence comes from these facts: He endorsed using government buildings for church meetings, signed a treaty with the Kaskaskia Indians that allotted federal money to support the building of a Catholic church and to pay the salaries of the church’s priests, and repeatedly renewed legislation that gave land to the United Brethren to help their missionary activities among the Indians.

Some might be completely surprised to discover that just two days after Jefferson wrote his famous letter citing the “wall of separation between Church & State,” he attended church in the place where he always had as president: the U.S. Capitol. The very seat of our nation’s government was used for sacred purposes. The Library of Congress’ website notes, “It is no exaggeration to say that on Sundays in Washington during the administrations of Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809) and of James Madison (1809-1817) the state became the church.”

President John Adams spoke about how central God was to be in our republic, when he said, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

And to what religion was Adams referring? He gave us an answer when he wrote, “The general principles on which the Fathers achieved independence were the only Principles in which that beautiful Assembly of young Gentlemen could Unite. … And what were these general Principles? I answer, the general Principles of Christianity, in which all these Sects were united.”

Our Founders believed religion (specifically Christianity) would serve as the basis for morality and decency. They warned us specifically that, to abandon that foundation for our ethics, would leave society in civil unrest—just as we see today in run amuck classrooms and homes across the nation and people treating one another with such malevolence.

George Washington also warned future Americans of this very problem in his presidential farewell address: “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. … And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”

Well, the present leaders of our nation (including the Supreme Court) have turned a deaf ear to Washington’s warning and taken him up on his challenge to try to maintain “morality … without religion.”tyrants

America is now like it was in the time of the Judges in the Old Testament: “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25). That’s how it is today – with God being abandoned, so is our moral basis, and everyone is doing what is right in their own eyes. We’ve lost our moral compass, and that includes our president.

As a result, the president is as lost as the most wayward and rebellious youth. Instead of conveying any form of positive Washington conviction about the role of religion, President Obama casts conditional clauses (“If”) and doubt. He might have sounded like a preacher this past week in Charleston, but the truth is he is a charlatan chameleon when it comes to religion and specifically Christianity. Indeed he’s been known to mock it as he did in 2006 when he gave the following secular progressive diatribe against it.

As my friend and editor of WND, Joseph Farah, noted in 2012, Obama’s speech was given before an audience led by socialist Jim Wallis at the Call for Renewal conference. It starts getting interesting around the 26-minute mark, when Obama first made the point publicly that “whatever we once were, we are no longer a Christian nation.”

Obama went on, “Even if we had only Christians in our midst, if we expelled every non-Christian from the United States of America, whose Christianity would we teach in the schools?” Obama asks rhetorically. “Would it be James Dobson’s or Al Sharpton’s? Which passages of Scripture should guide our public policy? Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is OK – and that eating shellfish is an abomination? Or we could go with Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith? Or should we just stick to the Sermon on the Mount – a passage that is so radical that it’s doubtful that our own Defense Department would survive its application. So before we get carried away, let’s read our Bibles now. Folks haven’t been reading their Bibles.”muslim-obama

Regarding Obama’s words, I conclude not with my comments but those of John Witherspoon, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and president of the College of New Jersey (1768-94; now Princeton University), who said, “He is the best friend to American liberty, who is most sincere and active in promoting true and undefiled religion, and who set himself with the greatest firmness to bear down on profanity and immorality of every kind. Whoever is an avowed enemy of God, I scruple not to call him an enemy to his country.”You cannot be right for America if you're wrong with God

(Next week, I’ll expand on my thoughts here in my Independence Day weekend column, “In God we still must trust.” In the meantime, I highly encourage your reading of my New York Times bestseller, “Black Belt Patriotism,” where you will find loads more about what our founders actually thought, practiced, and wanted for our country)

Newspaper faces firestorm after attempted crack-down on anti-gay marriage op-eds


waving flagPublished June 27, 2015, FoxNews.com

A Pennsylvania newspaper is facing a firestorm of criticism after the editorial board said it would “very strictly limit” op-eds and letters against same-sex marriage on the heels of Friday’s historic Supreme Court ruling. PennLive/The Patriot-News in Harrisburg has issued a string of statements on its opinion page policies since the ruling — which legalized gay marriage nationwide — and by Saturday morning, appeared to have softened its op-ed restrictions on the subject.  But the newspaper initially took a hard-line stance. Editorial Page Editor John Micek tweeted shortly after the ruling that the newspaper would “no longer accept” or print op-eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage.

He then tweeted:

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The editorial board then began to dial back, in the face of apparent criticism from readers.

A newspaper editorial published online was updated Friday afternoon to clarify the board’s op-ed policy. In the editorial, which cheered the decision and said majority opinion author Justice Anthony Kennedy “nailed it,” the board issued the following statement:

“As a result of Friday’s ruling, PennLive/The Patriot-News will very strictly limit op-Eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage. 

“These unions are now the law of the land. And we will not publish such letters and op-Eds any more than we would publish those that are racist, sexist or anti-Semitic. 

“We will, however, for a limited time, accept letters and op-Eds on the high court’s decision and its legal merits.” 

Micek also tweeted:

tw04

Picture4This apparently did not satisfy readers, who posted a cascade of critical comments online. One read: “Clearly, PennLive’s policy is not to limit criticism of settled law, but rather to limit criticism of settled law that its editors like.” 

Saying he had been inundated with critical emails and phone calls, Micek then apologized in a column on Saturday morning — saying they had made a “very genuine attempt at fostering a civil discussion” but recognize that “there are people of good conscience and of goodwill who will disagree with Friday’s high court ruling.” you think

He wrote: “They are, and always will be, welcome in these pages, along with all others of goodwill, who seek to have an intelligent and reasoned debate on the issues of the day. These pages, I remind myself finally, belong to the people of Central Pennsylvania. I’m a conduit, I recognize, for them to share their views and to have the arguments that make us better as a people. And all views are — and always will be — welcome.” Different Free Speech Ideologies

Micek stressed that nobody at the newspaper is an opponent of the First Amendment. But he stressed that a civil debate is important, and the opinion page would draw the line when it comes to offensive speech. “More than once yesterday I was referred to as ‘f****t-lover,’ among other slurs,” he wrote. “And that’s the point that I was trying to make with our statement: We will not publish such slurs any more than we would publish racist, sexist or anti-Semitic speech. There are ways to intelligently discuss an issue. The use of playground insults is not among them. And they are not welcome at PennLive/The Patriot-News.”Liberalism a mental disorder 2

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Teacher Tells Girl Bible Quotes Banned From School


Posted on May 22, 2015Tad Cronn

 Different Free Speech Ideologies

Freedom of expression. It’s not a difficult concept. Basically, every human being has the right to speak his mind without fear of government punishment or penalty. Accepted, reasonable restrictions on speech are generally very loose, like no yelling “fire” in a crowded auditorium and no speech that is genuinely disruptive like standing up and reciting the Communist Manifesto while the teacher is trying to conduct class.

Yet somehow, school officials across this land often seem to forget that the right to freedom of speech, particularly religious speech, does not end at the classroom door. The latest example comes from Somerset Academy near Las Vegas, Nevada, where sixth-grader Mackenzie Fraiser was given an “All About Me” report assignment that was supposed to include an inspirational quote. When Mackenzie wanted to use John 3:16, however, her teacher said that biblical quotations and quotes from the Book of Mormon were forbidden by the school.

The incident might not have even come to light except that some months later, the same teacher made an assignment about self-esteem, and Mackenzie’s parents suggested using a Bible quote, reasoning that the reason Mackenzie has strong self-esteem is that she is made in God’s image. At that point, the sixth-grader spilled the beans about her teacher’s prohibition of things scriptural.

Mackenzie’s father, Tim Fraizer, the pastor of Grace Point Church, fired off an email to his girl’s teacher, certain that there must have been a miscommunication. The reply he received, however, was an email from an assistant principal, Jenyan Martinez, confirming that Mackenzie recalled the incident correctly and that the teacher was, in fact, enforcing school policy. In her response, Martinez suggested that the reason for banning the biblical quote from the original assignment was because, as an oral report, the assignment would give Mackenzie a, quote-unquote, captive audience for her religious beliefs.Liberalism a mental disorder 2

Liberty Institute attorney Jeremy Dys told The Blaze, “When students go to school they do not lose their First Amendment rights. It chilled her speech and, as such, what the school is teaching these kids right now is that it is wrong to reference their faith at school. If they don’t apologize for this mistake … then the lesson that these students will take away is that it is wrong to reference their faith in school.”first-amendment-flag

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that the academy said in a statement that it values students’ rights and the incident was under review.

The Mackenzies are asking for the school to apologize and allow their daughter to submit her original assignment with the quote for a grade, which seems very reasonable. Had the situation been inverted, and an atheist student found herself banned by a Christian academy from using, say, a Richard Dawkins quote, the fireworks would be seen far and wide.Leftist determonation to destroy freedom of religion

So why is it considered acceptable by so many government officials to impose on Christians’ rights while asserting a position of de facto atheism? The right to freedom of speech should preclude any policy of selective “diversity.”cause of death freedom combo 2

NAACP Loses Battle to Silence Black Pro-Lifer Who Bashed Its Pro-Abortion Stance


waving flagReported by Steven Ertelt, May 19, 2015, Washington, DC

URL of the Original Posting Site: http://www.lifenews.com/2015/05/19/naacp-loses-battle-to-silence-black-pro-lifer-who-bashed-its-pro-abortion-stance/

The NAACP has lost its legal battle to silence a black pro-life writer who parodied its pro-abortion stance by referring to the NAACP as the “National Association for the Abortion of Colored People.”Which kills more blacksAfter LifeNews.com blogger Ryan Bomberger published his article at LifeNews, the NAACP threatened to sue LifeNews.com and Bomberger over the column that took the civil rights organization to task over its abortion position. The NAACP is upset about a column Bomberger wrote at LifeNews titled, “NAACP: National Association for the Abortion of Colored People” and a legal battle between it and Bomberger ensued.

Last year, a judge issued a ruling in the NAACP lawsuit against Bomberger. The judge indicated that Bomberger had no First Amendment right to lampoon the NAACP by calling it the “National Association for the Abortion of Colored People” in an effort to mock its pro-abortion position and opposition to pro-life legislation.

Today, the federal 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has overturned that decision and ruled in favor of full free speech rights for its timeBomberger, his group the Radiance Foundation, and LifeNews.com. Judge Harvey Wilkinson wrote the opinion on behalf of the three-judge panel that unanimously ruled against the NAACP.

The ruling upheld Bomberger’s and LifeNews’ “expressive right to comment on social issues under the First Amendment.”

“We vacate the injunction against Radiance entered by the district court and remand with instructions that defendant’s counterclaims likewise be dismissed,” the court ruled, adding that it rejected the NAACP’s attempt to “obstruct the conveyance of ideas, criticism, comparison, and social commentary. Political discourse is the grist of the mill in the marketplace of ideas.”

As far as calling the NAACP the “National Association for the Abortion of Colored People” – the appeals court even went as far as saying Bomber’s piece at LifeNews wasn an inventive and effective parody. “Biting, surely; distortive, certainly; Radiance’s ploy was nonetheless effective at conveying sharply what it was that Radiance wished to say,” it said. “The use of the satirical modification of the true NAACP name was designed, as many titles are, to be eye-catching and provocative in a manner that induces the reader to continue on.”

Before the decision, Bomberger said he was surprised the venerable civil rights group would sue him, a black pro-life person. “This lawsuit should be shocking to any American who values truth and the First Amendment,” explains Bomberger. “The irony is painful. The NAACP is suing me—a black man—for exercising my Constitutionally-guaranteed right to free speech.”

Rush Limbaugh has parodied the NAACP’s name since Clarence Thomas’s Supreme Court confirmation,” Bomberger points out. “But the NAACP hasn’t sued a wealthy broadcaster, with an audience of millions, for parodying them every time he refers to them. I’m honored they feel threatened by a small, life-affirming organization’s illuminating words.”

The ACLU has officially sided with The Radiance Foundation stating: “…the right to parody prominent organizations like the NAACP is an essential element of the freedom of speech.” The Electronic Frontier Foundation, which joined the ACLU in the Amicus Brief, expressed deep concerns “because a decision holding [The Radiance Foundation] liable for trademark infringement threatens a huge range of expression…Judge Jackson’s decision misreads both trademark law and the First Amendment.”

Bomberger says the real problem is not his free speech but the NAACP’s abortion advocacy. “Abortion doesn’t advance people of color,” he said. “The NAACP is on the wrong side of this human rights issue, and they are wrong to try to silence our free speech, too.”Gruber-Abortion

Following the piece, the NAACP sent Bomberger, the director of the Radiance Foundation, and LifeNews a threatening letter claiming infringement on its name and logo for including it in the opinion column. The letter accuses Bomberger and his group, the Radiance Foundation, of “trademark infringement” over an ad campaign that exposes the NAACP’s pro-abortion position. Stating that while “you are certainly entitled to express your viewpoint, you cannot do so in connection with a name that infringes on the NAACP’s rights,” the letter demands a response within a self-imposed time period.Liberalism a mental disorder 2

In response to the letter, Bomberger asked a federal court to declare that the First Amendment protects his and the Radiance Foundation’s exercise of free speech and that his speech does not infringe on any of the NAACP’s trademarks or other rights. The lawsuit does not seek any damages.

In its countersuit, the NAACP’s counterclaim denies that the NAACP is pro-­-abortion or has even taken a position on the issue.

Despite the fact the LifeNews article in question simply parodied the NAACP’s name, criticized the organization’s documented pro-abortion actions, and used the NAACP’s unaltered logo to identify the civil rights group the judge refused to dismiss the case as a First Amendment issue. Although the NAACP took offense at the article, Bomberger has frequently spoken out about the NAACP’s pro-abortion stance and its ignoring how abortion disproportionately targets black unborn children. The NAACP recently came under fire for opposing a bill to ban abortions based on race.

“The damage done is the loss of over 15 million black lives to abortion,” Bomberger, an adoptee and adoptive father., told LifeNews previously before the ruling. “How can the NAACP possibly claim neutrality over the abortion issue if they’re financially profiting from annual sponsorship from the nation’s largest abortion chain?”mommy can you feel me

Despite the NAACP suit, Bomberger says the Radiance Foundation’s www.TooManyAborted.com abortion awareness campaign will continue to expose failed leadership in the black community on the issue of abortion. Abortion alone has taken the lives of over 16 million black children. For every 100 live births in the African American community, another 77 are aborted. African-American teenage abortion rates are more than twice as high as the national average, according to a new study. The African-American abortion rate, according to the study conducted by the Guttmacher Institute, is 41 per 1,000 women among the 15-19 year old age group. The national average abortion rate is 18 per 1,000 women among 15-19-year-olds.National death rate percentages

Alliance Defending Freedom allied attorney Charles M. Allen with the Glen Allen, Va. firm Goodman, Allen & Filetti PLLC is defending Bomberger and Radiance in U.S. District Court in The Radiance Foundation v. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People for the Eastern District of Virginia, Norfolk Division.

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Gay Mafia Targets Christian Pastors, Ignores Muslim Imams Calling For Their Death


waving flagReported by Bethany Blankley April 22, 2015

URL of the Original Posting Site: http://www.westernjournalism.com/gay-mafia-targets-christian-pastors-ignore-muslim-imams-calling-for-their-death/

Image credit:  Erika Cross / Shutterstock.com

Image credit: Erika Cross / Shutterstock.com

Gay MAfiaIn 2015 America, a remnant of faithful Christian pastors, not imams, are being targeted by gay activists. No Christian pastor I know has ever proclaimed or financially supported the beheading of anyone, let alone gays. The “Gay Mafia,” as Bill Maher calls them, are like fools flouting their own folly. They impose standards (that they don’t follow) solely on Christians through discriminatory legal measuresbut completely ignore imams who advocate their death.

Homosexuality is a moral disorder. It is a moral disease, a sin and corruption… No person is born homosexual, just like no one is born a thief, a liar or murderer. People acquire these evil habits due to a lack of proper guidance and education.

There are many reasons why it is forbidden in Islam. Homosexuality is dangerous for the health of the individuals and for the society. It is a main cause of one of the most harmful and fatal diseases … It is the most un-natural way of life. Homosexuality leads to the destruction of family life.

Muslims who follow the Qur’an understand its words as literal, from Allah. The Qur’an states that those who act on same-sex attraction and behavior make a “god (ilah) of there own lusts,” reject Allah’s will, and practice “wickedness” (Qur’an 26.165-166; 27.055; 29.028-29). There is no such thing as a gay Muslim. Nor is there any public acceptance for the gay lifestyle in any Muslim majority country—or in any Muslim neighborhood or no-go zone in a Muslim minority country. According to Shar’ia law, the sodomizer and the sodomized both deserve death. Likewise, the rules and punishment for zina (adultery) are applied to lesbians—death for married, lashes for unmarried.beheadding collection

It is common knowledge throughout the Muslim world that no one can be gay and follow Allah. It is also widely acknowledged that the “people of the book,” Jews and Christians—whose laws actually seek to safeguard human rights—must be killed. Yet, no gays are protesting, subpoenaing, or asserting the arrest, for example, of Imam Abu Ammaar Yasir Qadhi of Memphis, Tenn., who publicly asserts: “Jews and Christians are filthy; their lives and property can be taken in jihad by the Muslims.”against America

Anyone who believes they are immune from the outworking of Islamic ideology does not understand it. Qadhi asserts, according to the Qur’an, that everyone–not only in America, but worldwide– “must bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah”; and because of this “principle of monotheism … the prophet has been commanded to do jihad.”

Likewise, Brooklyn, N.Y., Imam Tareq Yousef Al-Masri recently declared at the Oulel-Albab mosque: “We, the Muslims … the Muslims of the religious sector are time bombs.”

These imams are not alone.

According to the Mapping Sharia Project, 51 percent of mosques in America had “texts that either advocated the use of violence in the pursuit of a Shari’a-based political order or advocated violent jihad; another 30 percent had texts that were moderately supportive of violence.” Distribution of anti-Western literature, videos, and textbooks is documented, as are the Islamic centers that operate as front groups for the Muslim Brotherhood.

Imam advocacy for the extermination of non-Muslims has existed in America for decades; yet these imams have not been deported, let alone investigated by the IRS or any other government organization for their alleged constitutional violations.muslim-obama Islamapologist Obama Muslim collection

In 1999, Naqshbandi Sufi Sheikh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani testified in front of the State Department that eighty percent of mosques in America had “extremist leaders.” In 2006, Freedom House’s Center for Religious Freedom exposed widespread dissemination of hate ideology in literature and sermons by mosques nationwide. And in 2007, during the Holy Land Foundation trial, perhaps one of the most important documents discovered—the Muslim Brotherhood’s manifesto—revealed its “General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America” to destroy it from within.

Gays’ civil rights, human rights, or even lives for that matter are irrelevant to imams. If gays want to live, they should consider redirecting their vitriol toward imams who preach their death, and toward a silent—yet active—political and legal system perpetuating and enabling treasonous hate speech to their detriment.OARLogo Picture6

Understanding religious liberty and free speech compliant with sharia law


– – Monday, April 20, 2015

URL of the Original Posting Site: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/apr/20/bethany-blankley-understanding-religious-liberty-a/ 

Libyan followers of Ansar al-Shariah Brigades and other Islamic militias hold a demonstration against a film and a cartoon denigrating the Prophet Muhammad in Benghazi. (Associated Press)
Libyan followers of Ansar al-Shariah Brigades and other Islamic militias hold a demonstration against a film and a cartoon denigrating the Prophet Muhammad in Benghazi. (Associated Press)

The diurnal interminable squabbling about First Amendment rights intentionally and ironically ignores the concerted effort to ensure its compliance to Shari’a law. Under the guise of “religious freedom,” Islamic organizations linked to the Muslim Brotherhood such as the Islamic Circle of North America, the Association of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA), and the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) have devoted millions of dollars and resources to a well coordinated campaign to ensure American laws, including judicial proceedings and state constitutions, be Shar’ia compliant. Shari’a (“legislation”) is rooted in the Qur’an, the foundation of Islamic law; non-compliance is punishable by death (3:85; 4:65). Christian Persecution

Such efforts are curious however, in light of Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA) assertions. Islamic scholars, who draft opinions on issues concerning American Muslims, advocate no conflict exists “between Islamic teachings and the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.”culture of deceit and lies

FCNA asserts, “it is false and misleading to suggest that there is a contradiction between being faithful Muslims Imperial Islamic President Obamacommitted to God (Allah) and being loyal American citizens. Islamic teachings require respect of the laws of the land where Muslims live as minorities, including the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, so long as there is no conflict with Muslims’ obligation for obedience to God. The primacy of obedience to God is a commonly held position of many practicing Jews and Christians as well.”

But, if Shari’a doesn’t contradict American law, why vigilantly advertise, lobby, award “educational grants,” and fund political campaigns, to implement Shari’a compliant American law? 

The answer is quite simple. Groups like FCNA may use terminology like “religious freedom” but their definitions of religion and freedom can only be rightly understood within the context of Islamic ideology—not from western law or culture. 

FCNA’s assertion is obviously false when understood from within the context of taqqiya, Qur’an sanctioned deceit, and the Islamic doctrine of abrogation (2:106; 3:185; 16:101).  Shari’a law is in fact what the European Court on Human Rights ruled more than once: “incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy.” Shari’a actually rejects Constitutional rights, legislating restrictions and punishments against them.

Consider how First Amendment rights fare under Shari’a law.

  • Under Shari’a, no free exercise of religion exists, especially for Muslims who choose to leave Islam. Muhammad ordered, “Whoever changes his Islamic religion, kill him” (Hadith Sahih al-Bukhari, Vol. 9, Book 84, No. 57). Likewise, Muslims are instructed to murder, crucify, and dismember those who reject Islam, “wage war against Allah and his apostle and strive to make mischief in the land” (2:191, 5:32,33; 9:5, 123, 29).beheadding collection
  • According to a 2012 Pew Research Report, 60 percent of Middle Eastern and North African countries criminalize apostasy, the act of abandoning one’s faith. Apostasy laws also exist in Asian-Pacific and sub-Saharan African countries. Examples abound in America, however, just consider Ground Zero’s Imam Abdallah Adhami’s assertion that Muslims who leave Islam should be imprisoned. (He also stated on his organization’s website that “being gay is a ‘painful trial’ caused by past trauma.”)
  • Likewise, blasphemy laws exist worldwide to criminalize offensive speech or actions related to the Qur’an, Allah, and Muhammad. Seventy percent of Middle Eastern and North African countries, 31 percent of countries in the Americas, and 16 percent of European countries criminalize blasphemy. Those who correctly claim the word “blasphemy” cannot be found in the Qur’an exclude the fact that blasphemous acts are easily identifiable. Any “offensive” speech is illegal, which is why Dutch filmmaker van Gogh was brutally stabbed to death and French Charlie Hedbo satirists were gunned down; all victims were unarmed. These violent acts were not random, extreme, or isolated, but examples of following the Qur’an’s instructions.
  • Discrimination against all non-Muslims exists under Shari’a — because the underlying concept of equality does not. In fact, inequality, slavery, and murderare enforced through theIslamic construct ofdhimmitude.
    • Under dhimmitude, non-Muslims are divided into two groups. The polytheists, “pagans, idolaters and heathens” are given a choice to convert to Islam or die. Jews and Christians, known as “people of the book,” dhimmi, and/or kuffar, are legally classified as third class citizens. They first must be humiliated and subjugated to pay a tax (Jizyah) in increasing amounts to Muslim-majority rulers. Next, they are given time to convert or leave their town, region, and eventually, country. If the Kuffar can’t or don’t pay the Jizyah, convert to Islam, or move, Muhammad states that peace is impossible and the kuffar must be caught and beheaded (9:29; 22:19; 47:4).
    • Under dhimmitude no non-Muslim can freely practice his/her religious beliefs publicly. Shari’a forbids all public displays of crosses, mangers, Christmas trees, stars of David, Menorahs, ringing of church bells, singing of Christmas carols, or any other act considered “offensive” to Muslims. Shari’a also prohibits peaceful assembly. Non-Muslims cannot repair, rebuild, or build new places to worship, nor can they bury their dead near Muslim graves.
  • Shari’a law first imposes unequal legal status for non-Muslims; then eliminates them. The near extinction of non-Muslims in Muslim-majority countries evidences the stark reality that no First Amendment rights exist under Shari’a. Instead, Muslims are instructed to “terrorize and behead those who believe in scriptures other than the Qur’an” and punish non-Muslims with “garments of fire, hooked iron rods, boiling water; melt their skin and bellies” (8:12; 22:19). The Qur’an incontrovertibly clarifies that conflict not only exists “between Islamic teachings and the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights,” but also exists infinitivally.muslim-obama

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White House: Obama to restrict media’s reporting of anti-jihad articles


By Michael DorstewitzMichael Dorstewitz on January 14, 2015

URL of the Original Posting Site: http://libertyunyielding.com/2015/01/14/white-house-obama-restrict-medias-reporting-anti-jihad-articles/#1AwESo67hIi7ZlSj.99

Josh-Earnest-620x429

Source: Legal Insurrection

At Monday’s White House press briefing, chief spokesman Josh Earnest indicated that in light of the terrorist raid of Charlie Hebdo’s Paris offices by jihadists, President Barack Obama would be taking a serious swipe at the First Amendment freedom of the press as it pertains to future anti-Jihadist articles.

The Daily Caller reported:

President Barack Obama has a moral responsibility to push back on the nation’s journalism community when it is planning to publish anti-jihadi articles that might cause a jihadi attack against the nation’s defenses forces, the White House’s press secretary said Jan. 12.

“The president … will not now be shy about expressing a view or taking the steps that are necessary to try to advocate for the safety and security of our men and women in uniform” whenever journalists’ work may provoke jihadist attacks, spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters at the White House’s daily briefing.

The unprecedented reversal of Americans’ civil-military relations, and of the president’s duty to protect the First Amendment, was pushed by Earnest as he tried to excuse the administration’s opposition in 2012 to the publication of anti-jihadi cartoons by the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.Imperial President Obama kingobamafingerconstitution-300x204

Back in Sept. 2012, then-White House Press Secretary Jay Carney criticized Charlie Hebdo for its publication of cartoon images lampooning Mohammad. He said, according to White House Dossier:

Well, we are aware that a French magazine published cartoons featuring a figure resembling the Prophet Muhammad, and obviously, we have questions about the judgment of publishing something like this. We know that these images will be deeply offensive to many and have the potential to be inflammatory. But we’ve spoken repeatedly about the importance of upholding the freedom of expression that is enshrined in our Constitution.cropped-freedom-is-not-dictator-friendly.pngObama Muslim collection

It’s obvious that the White House, as of Monday, hasn’t backed off from this position.

The First Amendment, as it pertains to the press’ reporting and analyzing of events, provides, “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom … of the press….”

But over and above those rights that are guaranteed and protected under the Constitution, something else is at play here — something advanced by Ross Douthat in his Jan. 7 New York Times commentary:

“If a large enough group of someone is willing to kill you for saying something, then it’s something that almost certainly needs to be said, because otherwise the violent have veto power over liberal civilization, and when that scenario obtains it isn’t really a liberal civilization any more….”

Stated differently, when journalists back off of a story or sanitize its reporting and commentary of events out of fear of terrorist attacks, the terrorists have already won.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Michael DorstewitzMichael Dorstewitz is a recovering Michigan trial lawyer and former research vessel deck officer. He has written extensively for BizPac Review.

More by Michael Dorstewitz

 

 

 

Freedom with Prayer

Examples Of The Tolerant Left **Graphic**


090309_joe_plumber_297Regardless of what you may think, I care about the victims and their families. That is why I fight for the 2nd Amendment. The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. Such was the case with Elliot Rodger.

If you think for one second that guns are the problem then you are being misled and are now part of the problem. This was my objection to the father of one of the victim’s blaming gun owners for his son’s death.

There is absolute right and wrong, there is good and evil, unfortunately society tries to redefine right and wrong as it gets in their way.

What happened this past weekend was a tragedy, and the powers that be will USE this tragedy to try and control us a little more.  What about the American soldier that died defending our rights? Is there death any less tragic? Let me say this again – they died defending our rights. Why would we allow the politicians to make a mockery of their sacrifice to a take away our rights?

Think about it…

For you on the left, your tolerance is overwhelming.

What follows are just a very tiny portion of comments at my website, Tweets directed at my account, received emails and entries posted on my Facebook page. Although these are *Not Safe For Work* – I cannot print half of the ones I receive due to their extreme nature, in sexual content, profanity and outright violence.

I’m used to the revulsion and racist, vile, almost inhuman hatred which liberal’s spew forth on a daily basis – but I thought you might be interested in just a taste of what we’re really dealing with here. People who stand up in public and say conservatives are bad people? I’d like you to know they are not dealing straight with you. Ever.

** THOSE SENSITIVE TO GRAPHIC PROFANE, SEXUAL, OR VIOLENT SPEECH DO NOT CONTINUE**

Steven Weeks

May 27th, 5:01pm

Fuck you asshole . I hope your daughter gets raped by a dick so big it splits her in two the shot. As for your boy kill him slowly one shot at a time limb by limb Fuck you and your chicken ass rights only pussies need guns so that means you are a pussy. In fact I’ll pay to fly you to California so I can fuck you up. I bet you won’t even answer this if you do you will hide behind your guns. You see asshole I’m no pussy I don’t need a gun to fuck you up got it. Again I can only hope that one day I read about your kids being fucked up and beg to die but only slowly. Oh by the way motherfucker I am a plumber too. You don’t know how to use a set of irons . I would enjoy destroying your credibility concerning the plumbing trade what’s a figure 5 fitting, what’s a durum system probably have to look it up so you do look as stupid as you really are go fuck yourself and fuck your family . If your mom is still alive maybe she will get shot Dad, Grandparents, sisters, brothers, anyone of your low life family. Hey, there your rights; right motherfucker. you piece of shit . In retrospect may be you are a plumber because are a piece of shit. And I am also a vet what about you. Do you have your DD214 I sure do want to se it.

 

Steven Weeks

May 28th, 5:08pm

I hope you get heckled and heckled along with the kids, wifie yo mama, which by the way should have aborted your ass it old her to. She has some nasty pussy but an inbred like you probably already knows that

 

Jason Thomas

May 29th, 9:58am

May you drown in your own excrement.

 

Patti Mullin

May 28th, 7:59pm

Next time you are sucking out someone’s septic system why don’t you stick your head down the hose. Because you really are a piece of shit!!!!!!!!!!

 

Matt Simmons

May 28th, 5:29pm

You’re a repellent fuck. Just thought you should know! You should kill yourself!

 

Jerry Gregory

May 28th, 4:08pm

I hope someday you are on on the bad end of a mass shooting. If our paths ever cross I am going to stick my 45 up your penis whole and pull the trigger. You complete piece of horse crap.

 

Bria Fey

May 28th, 8:07am

You dumb piece of shit. How DARE you pretend to know what it’s like to lose a child? After your idiotic and ignorant comments about “your dead kids don’t blah blah blah my constitutional rights” (seriously, you don’t even deserve to be quoted, so I won’t), people are honestly questioning your sanity, you sanctimonious prick. You aren’t morally superior though – you are morally vacant. You are a liar and a fraud and a sad excuse for a human being. You spread hate and you are pro-violence and you are what is wrong with humanity. Fuck. You.

 

John Seitz

May 28th, 2:00am

I will pray every night that the day comes when you have to go to the morgue to identify your murdered child or grandchild. I would never harm another human being, except in self defense, but I will donate to the defense fund of anyone who makes you suffer.

 

Bill Jonke

May 27th, 9:45pm

May one of your own children, if your limp dick was capable of helping to conceive, receive the same fate as those “dead children” who don’t trump your rights, you BASTARD! And get your balls shot at too while you’re at it. You deserve it and without a 911 call.

Bill Jonke

May 28th, 12:28am

Fucking prick, if you can even find one without a microscope or apply a 2″ strap-on!

 

Steve Small

May 29th, 10:50am

I hope someone knocks you right the fuck out, you miserable asshole!

 

Misch JinxJoe the Plumber

22 hrs ·

I said it once and i’ll say it again .. i hope you have eyes in the back of your head cause by the time you hear the sound it will be to late

 

Joanne McIntyreJoe the Plumber

May 27 at 5:56pm ·

Joe hope somebody comes along and shoots your dumb ass.

 

Harry BallzackJoe the Plumber

May 27 at 5:07pm ·

Livestock humping, inbred southern trash

 

Bill JonkeJoe the Plumber

May 27 at 4:28pm ·

You, a poor excuse for a plumber, need to be shot in the balls and left to live!

 

So there you go – the tolerant left and their love for humanity. There are literally thousands more everyday… sad to think these people are even out there. Now do you think you should have the right to protect your family? I sure do.

Keep in mind that these are the same folks criticizing me for insensitive remarks! – JTP

VOTE 02

Be Very Careful How You Read the Following.


Church condemns planned satanic mass at Harvard

http://www.wcvb.com/news/church-condemns-planned-satanic-mass-at-harvard/25928594#ixzz31Wx1ElIu

Event part of series exploring different cultures, religious traditions

Published  6:41 AM EDT May 12, 2014

“Please read the entire article first, and then let’s discuss this at the end.” JB

Controversial Black Mass planned at Harvard

Transcript of television news report:

RIGHT NOW WITH THE THE PLAN. THIS SATANIC MASS IS NOT WITHOUT CONTROVERSY. TONIGHT THE ARCHDIOCESE WILL BE HOLDING A PROCESSION AS WELL AS AN HOUR OF PRAYER AS A COUNTERMEASURE. ORGANIZERS OF THE SATANIC MASS SAY IT’S NOT INTENDED TO BE A RESULT BUT FOR PEOPLE TO EXPLORE OTHER FORMS OF WORSHIP. THE BLACK MASS RE-ENACTMENT IS SPONSORED BY A CULTURAL STUDIES CLUB. IT INCLUDES SATANIC RITUALS AND MOCKS A TRADITIONAL CATHOLIC MASS. CATHOLICS ARE TAKING OFFENSE AS WHAT THEY SEE AS RELIGIOUS INTOLERANCE. IF SOMEONE WERE GOING TO DO A K.K. RE-ENACTMENT OR A MIN STREL SHOW OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT AT HARVARD, WHAT WOULD BE THE REACTION OF THE HARVARD COMMUNITY? I WOULD HOPE THE REACTION WOULD BE OUTRAGE. IN A STATEMENT THE ARCHDIOCESE OF BOSTON CONDEMNS THE RE-ENACTMENT SAYING IT PLACES PARTICIPANTS DANGEROUSLY TO DESTRUCTIVE WORKS OF EVIL. THE ARCHDIOCESE WILL COUNTER THE BLACK MASS WITH AN HOUR OF PRAYER. THE CLUB IS DEFENDING THE MASS SAYING THE PERFORMANCE IS DESIGNED TO BE EDUCATIONAL. IT’S PRECEDED BY A LECTURE THAT PROVIDES THE HISTORY, CONTEXT AND/OR GIN OF THE BLACK MASS. SOME STUDENTS SAY THEY’RE OPEN TO IT. I THINK EDUCATION SHOULD BE ABOUT TRYING OUT ALL THE DIFFERENT IDEAS AND TALK ABOUT ALL THE ISSUES AS LONG AS IT’S DONE IN A RESPECTFUL MANNER THERE’S TO PROBLEM. A SPOKESPERSON FOR THE CLUB SAY THEY DO NOT INTEND TO INSULT THE CHURCH DURING THE MASS TONIGHT.

 

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. —The student organizers of a planned satanic mass at Harvard University say their intent is purely educational, but the Roman Catholic church says participants are putting themselves “dangerously close to destructive works of evil.”

The student club said in a statement that “the performance is part of a larger effort to explore the religious facets that continue to influence contemporary culture.”

“Our purpose is not to denigrate any religion or faith, which would be repugnant to our educational purposes, but instead to learn and experience the history of different cultural practices,” the statement said.

The Harvard Extension School said it supports “the rights of our students and faculty to speak and assemble freely,” and noted that the group also plans Shinto, Shaker and Buddhist events.

The Boston Archdiocese, however, says the mass mocks the Catholic Mass.

“For the good of the Catholic faithful and all people, the church provides clear teaching concerning satanic worship,” the archdiocese said. “This activity separates people from God and the human community, it is contrary to charity and goodness, and it places participants dangerously close to destructive works of evil.”

The Rev. Michael Drea, senior chaplain at the Harvard Catholic Center, said the academic freedom argument is a smoke screen.

“The black mass is a contradiction to the Catholic faith and is rooted in hatred and bigotry,” he told the Boston Herald. “The university shouldn’t tolerate something like this under the guise of academic integrity.”

“My first reaction was outrage. Then I was given this thought by the Holy Spirit of God. Any attempt to silence, or censor their First Amendment Right of Free Speech will ADD to the persecution of the Evangelical Church by the extreme Leftist/Marxist/Socialist/Communist/Democrats/Liberals. Silencing them gives the Left ammunition to silence us.’

“I’d rather fight to my own death their right to do this, so that my rights as a Evangelical, Pentecostal Christian can continue a little longer. It is okay to disagree, and even hate what someone else is saying, doing or believing, and still fight for their right to do so.’

“Silencing them silences us.’

“What do you think?” JB

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