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April 17, 2015

Here’s A School District Job That Needs To Be Eliminated

The one occupied by Dr. G. David Moss, head of the African-American Student/Parent Services Department for the South Bend Public Schools in Indiana.

It isn’t merely that he organized college field trips for third grade students that excluded all non-black students.

It isn’t just that the existence of such an office is offensive to the notion that all students and parents should be included.

No, it is this statement that shows that his job, not to mention the entire department, needs to be eliminated and Dr. Moss needs to be banned from any future employment in any public education setting.

Dr. Moss says the field trips were never meant to offend anyone.

"It was not meant to be exclusionary, it was only meant to support and give these kids what they need to think positively about themselves and about their future," he said.

After all, he says, it's his job to solely think about South Bend's African American youth.

"I was hired to look at the issues facing African American kids in the SBCSC, and my job specifically says that I need to develop programs and develop strategies to help these kids and their families become more successful academically," Moss said.

I’m terribly sorry – the notion that anyone in any position of public employment (much less in education) believes that their job is to think only about the success and well-being of people of only one race is totally antithetical to the Fourteenth Amendment. And as an educator, I am beyond pissed that this clown is pulling down a salary that would be enough to pay for at least two classroom teachers.


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The Silliness Of Anonymous Sources In Journalism

This may be one of the most unintentionally funny things I’ve seen in a news article..

Staff attorneys at the Justice Department’s antitrust division are nearing a recommendation to block Comcast Corp.’s bid to buy Time Warner Cable Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.

Attorneys who are investigating Comcast’s $45.2 billion proposal to create a nationwide cable giant are leaning against the merger out of concerns that consumers would be harmed and could submit their review as soon as next week, said the people.

The antitrust lawyers will present their findings to Renata Hesse, a deputy assistant attorney general for antitrust, who will decide, along with the division’s top officials, whether to file a federal lawsuit to block the deal, they said.

The Justice Department lawyers have been contacting outside parties in the last few weeks to shore up evidence to support a potential case against the merger, one of the people said.

Am I alone in finding all of the vague references to “the people” rather funny? After all, it tells us nothing about the credibility of “the people” involved, other than that the reporter thinks they are somehow knowledgeable about the situation. Better not let the readers have enough information to judge for themselves -- just tell them that "people" and the always reliable "they" have said it so it must be true.


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Muslim Refugees Drown Christians On Their Boat

No doubt Barack Obama will soon respond to this incident – by condemning Christians who refuse to accept that Muhammad is a prophet.

Muslims who were among migrants trying to get from Libya to Italy in a boat this week threw 12 fellow passengers overboard -- killing them -- because the 12 were Christians, Italian police said Thursday.

Italian authorities have arrested 15 people on suspicion of murdering the Christians at sea, police in Palermo, Sicily, said.

The original group of 105 people left Libya on Tuesday in a rubber boat. Sometime during the trip north across the Mediterranean Sea, the alleged assailants -- Muslims from the Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal -- threw the 12 overboard, police said.

More Christians martyred at the hands of “the Religion of Peace”.


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Jeb Bush Is Right On Principle Regarding Deference, But Wrong In This Case

Here’s what Jeb had to say about confirming Loretta Lynch as Attorney General.

"I think presidents have the right to pick their team," Bush said, according to reports of his stop at the "Politics and Pie" forum in Concord, New Hampshire, on Thursday night.

The former Florida governor made sure to get in a few digs at current Attorney General Eric Holder, saying that Republicans should consider that the longer it takes to confirm Lynch, the longer Holder stays.

A Senate fight over a sex-trafficking bill that includes a controversial abortion provision has held up Lynch's nomination for 160 days since Obama announced his choice last Nov. 8, but Minority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is threatening to break protocol and force a vote on the Senate floor.

"If someone is supportive of the president's policies, whether you agree with them or not, there should be some deference to the executive," Bush told reporters. "It should not always be partisan."

Now as a rule, I would agree with the not-quite-official presidential candidate on this point. President’s should get deference in the selection of their Cabinet officials, and absent some manifest unfitness there is rarely good reason to refuse to confirm a nominee.

But notice my use of the word “rarely”.

In this case, there are three good reasons. First, the Democrats are filibustering a piece of legislation that has bipartisan support over a provision that is a standard part of most funding bills. That particular piece of legislation has priority over a vote on the nomination – and all the Democrats have to do is defer to the majority of the Senate in order to get a vote on Lynch. Secondly, this president has time and again refused to defer to Congress and usurped the legislative power when Congress has refused to pass legislation he wants. His failure to defer to Congress’ constitutional role constitutes good reason to refuse to defer to the customary practice of automatically giving consent to a nominee to a Cabinet position – especially since his approach to solving the problem is to sling public insults at the Senate rather than actually try to negotiate with the body given constitutional authority to accept or reject the Lynch nomination to end the logjam created by his own party. Lastly, Lynch herself has indicated her intent to continue the precedent set by Eric Holder of refusing to investigate or prosecute Executive Branch corruption because doing so potentially implicates the President in law-breaking – a presidential policy that Congress must refuse to affirm by confirming an Attorney General committed to continuing it.

Do I think this disqualified Jeb Bush to be the GOP nominee in 2016? No, I don’t – but it does not do anything to endear him to me and does not increase the likelihood of my supporting his candidacy in the GOP primary.

Personally, I think that the GOP leadership is thinking way too small on this one. I believe that they need to make clear to Harry Reid that there will be no vote on the Lynch nomination until he resigns his Senate seat and goes into disgraced retirement in Nevada. Otherwise the vote should be delayed until January 19, 2017.


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Democrats – The Party Of Old White People

Just look at their geriatric crew of pale candidates.

There are five Democrats who have either declared or are thinking about running for president. Three — Joe Biden, Bernard Sanders, and Jim Webb — will be over 70 years old on Inauguration Day 2017. Frontrunner Hillary Clinton will be nine months short of 70. Only Martin O'Malley, who will turn 54 a couple of days before the 2017 swearing-in, has not reached retirement age already.

The piece leaves out Lincoln Chafee, who will “only” be 63 years old on Inauguration Day – but who is so white that he would frighten Casper the Friendly Ghost. But hey – he’ll be eligible to draw Social Security by the time the next president is sworn in.

Contrast that with the Republicans.

The average age of the Republican field is far below the Democrats, with every candidate younger than Clinton. The most senior is Jeb Bush, who will be 64 on Inauguration Day. Scott Walker will be 49; Marco Rubio will be 45; Ted Cruz, 46; Rand Paul, 54; Chris Christie, 54; Mike Huckabee, 61; Bobby Jindal, 45. Although Bush is in the older range, they're all in the career sweet spot to win the White House.

Yeah, you could throw in Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee to age the field, but they will be 58 and 61 respectively when they are sworn in. Donald Trump, who no one takes seriously, will be 70, and long-shot Ben Carson will be 65. Carly Fiorina will be 62. But the point remains the same – the field is relatively young compared to any plausible Democrat, and is quite diverse in terms of ethnicity. Indeed, a Republican successor to Barack Obama is quite likely to be younger than the man they replace, despite the fact that Obama himself was the fifth youngest man to ever become president. Three of them (Rubio, Cruz, and Jindal) would even be bump him to sixth place on the list.

Of course, it isn’t just age that is the issue. The GOP candidates generally represent new ideas as well, while the Democrats tend towards an ossified leftism of the sort that died with the Soviet Union. Do we really want the old and broken?


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April 16, 2015

Remember That Martyrdom Is Not A Thing Of Ancient Days

Less than two months ago the demon-inspired terrorists of ISIS murdered 21 Coptic Christians on the banks of the Mediterranean in Libya for the "crime" of being Christians.

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The waves themselves turned red with their blood.

These faithful souls who stood fast in their faith until the end are now commemorated in this work of beauty that pays tribute to Christ our Savior.

pic_corner_20150407_klopez_libyanmartyrs[1].jpg

Remember these 21 brothers in Christ who made the sacrifice that each of us is called upon to be prepared to make.

  • Milad Makeen Zaky
  • Abanub Ayad Atiya
  • Maged Soliman Shehata
  • Youssef Shukry Younan
  • Kirollos Boshra Fawzy
  • Bishoy Astafanous Kamel
  • Samuel Astafanous Kamel
  • Malak Ibrahim Sinyout
  • Tawadros Youssef Tawadros
  • Gerges Milad Sinyout
  • Mina Fayez Aziz
  • Hany Abdel Mesih Salib
  • Samuel Alham Wilson
  • Ezzat Boshra Naseef
  • Luka Nagaty Anis
  • Gaber Mounir Adly
  • Essam Baddar Samir
  • Malak Farag Abrahim
  • Sameh Salah Farouk
  • Gerges Samir Megally
  • Mathew Ayairga

    The icon is the creation of iconographer Tony Rezk and available for purchase from Legacy Icons.


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    Another Obama VA Scandal

    What do you expect of the most transparent corrupt administration in our lifetime?

    Another veterans scandal hit the Obama administration Wednesday with the emergence of an internal Veterans Affairs memo that allowed bureaucrats to cook their books and assert they were answering diligently President Obama’s call to reduce the backlog of veterans’ benefits claims.

    The memo was known inside the VA as “Fast Letter 13-10,” and a government watchdog said Wednesday this “flawed” guidance from VA headquarters in Washington deliberately resulted in making the agency appear it was delivering services and benefits to veterans faster than it really was.

    The VA inspector general examined the impact of the memo, issued in May 2013, on the Philadelphia VA office — one of the largest in the nation, serving more than 825,000 veterans and their families in three states. Investigators found that VA managers, using “Fast Letter 13-10” as their justification, ordered workers to put the current date on benefits claims that were sometimes more than a year old, thereby “eliminating” part of the highly publicized backlog with the stroke of a pen or time stamp.

    The inspector general said it was just the sort of fiction that VA headquarters sought.

    “By design, the guidance contained in Fast Letter 13-10 was flawed, as it required [Philadelphia] staff to adjust the dates of claims for unadjudicated claims found in claims folder to reflect a current date,” the report said. “As such, the reliability of all performance measures related to [agency] timeliness measures for processing claims becomes unreliable.”

    I would suggest that this is a stunning development – except for the fact that it is in keeping with so many other Obama Administration scandals and their cover-ups that there isn’t anything surprising about it. Indeed, the only shocker here is that the order to lie was put in writing and then actually disclosed to investigators. Does this mean that the administration no longer even feels the need to offer the pretense of honest governance?


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    Another Rich MSNBC Leftist Who Doesn’t Pay Taxes

    Remember – while they want higher taxes for the 1%, they exempt themselves from paying.

    According to the IRS, although she likely makes a substantial living anchoring a weekend MSNBC show and as a professor at Wake Forest University, the left-wing Melissa Harris-Perry does not pay her taxes. The Internal Revenue Service just placed a $70,000 tax lien against Harris-Perry.

    She is the second left-wing MSNBC anchor caught not paying her fair share. Al Sharpton reportedly owes Uncle Sam upwards of $3 million.

    Maybe the time has come to take a close look at the taxes of all MSNBC personnel – especially the on-air talent. I hear none of them have paid their taxes for at least ten years.


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    So I Presume That Ed Schultz Will Defend Any Republican Who Refuses To Talk To MSNBC “Reporters”

    Here’s what the MSNBC hack has to say about The Hillary and her refusal to talk to the press during her Iowa campaign event.

    ED SCHULTZ: I don't think Hillary Clinton wants press. I think she wants people. And I think she doesn't have to answer any questions right now. And I think what she's going to do in Iowa is not focus on press but focus on what people have to say. And I think that Hillary Clinton's been around long enough she knows exactly what she's going to hear when she goes into that room right there and talks to those twenty- and thirty-somethings about America. Because she has one.

    Nah – I can’t see him saying that Scott Walker doesn’t have to talk to the press because he has college age kids and that’s who he really wants to talk to. I can’t imagine him saying such a thing about Jeb Bush, despite his having added another grandchild this week (BTW -- congratulations to Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush and his wife Amanda on the birth of their second child, Jack, on April 13). No, he would insist that it was a sign of arrogance and trying to hide from the American public while doing phony staged events.


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    I Don’t Understand Where The School Gets Its Jurisdiction On This

    Please understand – I find the shirts worn by these students and the message on them to be highly disturbing. But if they were worn off campus, I don’t see how the school has any jurisdiction to punish the students wearing them, even if there were pictures posted on social media sites.

    An investigation is underway on Long Island after two Commack High School students were photographed wearing t-shirts with anti-Semitic messages.

    As 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported, the photo shows two students in red t-shirts emblazoned with large, black swastikas with the word “Auschwitz” in large letters. In smaller letters, the words “hit the showers” can be seen, D’Auria reported.

    * * *

    The photo, which also appears to show the two students participating in underage drinking, was posted on Twitter, 1010 WINS reported.
    “I don’t know why they would ever post that, that never goes away. I don’t support what those kids did at all,” Commack High School senior Alex said.
    The school district said the students are being disciplined.

    Please note that the incident in question took place at a house party during spring break. It seems to me that this would put the incident fully outside the jurisdiction of the school to investigate and discipline – especially as far as the message on the shirt is concerned. After all, as Justice Jackson noted in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, “[i]f there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion, or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein.” That also means that no school official can punish the expression of disgusting and hateful statements that are deemed to be outside of the views approved by the school.


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    April 13, 2015

    Quotations From Chairwoman Hillary

    Regarding her kindness towards and concern for working-class Americans.

    F**k off! It’s enough that I have to see you shit-kickers every day, I’m not going to talk to you too!! Just do your G*damn job and keep your mouth shut.”
    (From the book “American Evita” by Christopher Anderson, p. 90 – Hillary to her State Trooper bodyguards after one of them greeted her with “Good morning.”

    Regarding her willingness to work with Americans of all political persuasions.

    “What are you doing inviting these people into my home? These people are our enemies! They are trying to destroy us!”
    (From the book “The Survivor” by John Harris, p. 99 – Hillary screaming to an aide, when she found out that some Republicans had been invited to the Clinton White House)

    Regarding her respect for the American people.

    “We just can’t trust the American people to make those types of choices…. Government has to make those choices for people”
    (From the book “I’ve Always Been A Yankee Fan” by Thomas D. Kuiper, p 20 – Hillary to Rep. Dennis Hastert in 1993 discussing her expensive, disastrous taxpayer-funded health care plan)

    More of Hillary’s greatest hits at Gateway Pundit.


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    But I Thought Rich People Spending Money To Influence Elections Corrupted Democracy

    Oh, that’s right – only when the rich folks are conservatives. When they are liberals, this sort of organizing is just hunky-dory.

    A cadre of wealthy liberal donors aims to pour tens of millions of dollars into rebuilding the left’s political might in the states, racing to catch up with a decades-old conservative effort that has reshaped statehouses across the country.

    The plan embraced by the Democracy Alliance, an organization that advises some of the Democrats’ top contributors, puts an urgent new focus on financing groups that can help the party regain influence in time for the next congressional redistricting process, after the 2020 elections. The blueprint approved by the alliance board calls on donors to help expand state-level organizing and lobbying for measures addressing climate change, voting rights and economic inequality.

    “People have gotten a wake-up call,” Gara LaMarche, the alliance’s president, said in an interview. “The right is focused on the state level, and even down-ballot, and has made enormous gains. We can’t have the kind of long-term progressive future we want if we don’t take power in the states.”

    The five-year initiative, called 2020 Vision, will be discussed this week at a private conference being held at a San Francisco hotel for donors who participate in the Democracy Alliance. Leading California Democrats are scheduled to make appearances, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and California Attorney General Kamala Harris. The alliance, which does not disclose its members, plans to make some of the events available to reporters via a webcast.

    Rich folks donating tons of cash to secretive organizations to influence government – if the Left didn't have double standards they wouldn't have any standards at all.


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    April 10, 2015

    Ineffective President Abandons Endangered Americans Abroad

    One of the things that Americans expect of their government is some sort of assistance if they are in difficulty abroad. “I’m an American – please contact the embassy/consulate” are the first words that ought to come to the lips of any US citizen who has been arrested in a foreign land. And if the situation in a foreign country goes to hell, it is expected that US diplomats – or the US military – will aid in the evacuation of our nation’s citizens.

    But in Yemen, that isn’t happening.

    Our diplomats bugged out weeks ago. And despite a US military presence just across the 20-mile wide Bab-el-Mandeb in Djibouti, the United States military is not doing anything to assist Americans in leaving Yemen during the current crisis.

    No – other countries are taking care of our citizens.

    The State Department is telling U.S. citizens fleeing the fighting in Yemen to contact the government of India or an international NGO dedicated to migrant rights for help, according to the website for the abandoned U.S. embassy in Sanaa and statements by Indian government officials.

    The Chinese Navy last week evacuated hundreds of people from the war-torn country. Russia, Canada, and France are also reported to have recently conducted evacuations of their own.

    The website of the U.S. diplomatic mission in Yemen posted two messages on Monday laying out options for American citizens looking to flee the country. The first noted that, “The Indian government has offered to assist U.S. citizens who want to depart Yemen for Djibouti. This potentially includes flights out of Sana’a and ships from Aden. U.S. citizens wishing to take advantage of this opportunity should contact First Secretary Raj Kopal at the Indian Embassy in Sana’a at 00967 734 000 657.”

    A second message stated that the International Organization for Migration (IOM) was working to arrange a flight out of the country to Djibouti at some point this week, and directed American citizens needing assistance to contact the IOM.


    Incredible. Just incredible. In my lifetime we have gone from having the capability to safeguard our own citizens abroad to having to rely on India and NGOs to do the job for us. Yea, how the mighty have fallen.

    By the way, a group of stranded US citizens has sued in federal court over this.

    Claiming the Obama administration turned its back on them, 41 Americans stranded in war-torn Yemen filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against the State Department and Defense Department for not evacuating them -- as fighting intensifies and U.S. allies launch airstrikes.

    The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., seeks to compel the government to use “all resources” possible to rescue the stranded Americans. The plaintiffs range in age from just a few weeks old to senior citizens.

    “Despite the clear danger to Americans in Yemen – and the death of at least one American – the Obama administration has not yet taken any substantive steps to help citizens or permanent residents reach safety,” the lawsuit claims.

    Interestingly enough, the suit was filed by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the Council on American-Islamic Relations. If so, I actually applaud them. After all, these folks should get at least as good treatment as as treasonous deserter Bo Bergdahl.


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    April 09, 2015

    Effort To Censor Pro-Military, Pro-American Film Nearly Succeeds At Michigan

    Remember when it was "important" to show The Last Temptation of Christ and The Handmaid's Tale on campus in order to stand up against Christians protesting against the attack on their faith? Why didn't they immediately invoke the same principle here -- and then waive the admission a charge and move the showing to a larger venue -- to stand up against the censors?

    Oh, that's right -- because the censors were not Christians. They were members of a progressive-approved minority religion that gets special privileges despite the fact that its followers on a daily basis engage in much greater offenses against the progressive ideology than do Christians.

    Fortunately, the censorship effort failed.

    When the drama surrounding the showing of a movie is more intense than the drama in the movie itself, something has gone wrong. Especially when a university of all places is involved.

    Yesterday, Reason reported that the University of Michigan pulled a planned showing of the Oscar-winning movie American Sniper after students protested that the Clint Eastwood flick "not only tolerates but promotes anti-Muslim...rhetoric and sympathizes with a mass killer."

    Michigian administrators responded by spiking the movie and replacing it with, no shit, Paddington. Then they semi-relented and announced

    plans to show "American Sniper" in a separate location from the UMix program, in what it said would be "a forum that provides an appropriate space for dialogue and reflection."

    Now comes news that, no, no, the university—generally regarded as one an outstanding academic institution—will now show American Sniper as planned. Via Foxnews.com:

    University Vice President for Student Life E. Royster Harper called the decision to cancel the Friday night showing a "mistake" in a statement.

    "The initial decision to cancel the movie was not consistent with the high value the University of Michigan places on freedom of expression and our respect for the right of students to make their own choices in such matters," Harper said. "The movie will be shown at the originally scheduled time and location."

    I applaud the authorities at the University for standing up to this crass anti-Americanism. Better late than never.

    But it does lead me to ask some questions.

    I wonder how many students at Michigan feel unsafe due to the presence of Islamists on campus who are more loyal to their terrorist faith than to American constitutional principles? Would the University even for a moment consider banning Islamist groups and literature from the campus -- much less expelling the Islamists whose ideology is inseparably related to terrorism? Those questions are, of course, rhetorical -- because any student who attempted to make a case for such efforts would likely be expelled from the University or driven fromt eh campus by the forces of "tolerance".

    So let me ask my real questions.

    How long until the Islamist swine behind this effort to censor American Sniper demand that the university pull American Sniper from the shelves at the library and ban its sale from campus bookstores -- or even its possession on campus at all? How long until they question their safety on campus if American veterans who fought their fellow Islamists are allowed to attend classes beside them? Efforts like those would not surprise me in the least -- or at least would not have surprised me if someone at the University had not grown a spine and decided to show the movie.

    Note to the University of Michigan Islamists involved in this censorship effort -- I've not seen American Sniper on screen, nor have I read the book. I don't particularly have an interest in spending a portion of my life doing either. But you had better get used to rhetoric condemning your vile beliefs and your efforts to undermine the freedom of every American. If such push-back makes you feel unsafe, so much the better. Feel free to relocate to one of the areas under control of your fellow Islamists, and prepare to see how unsafe life in a society operated by your fellow Islamists -- ISIS, Boko Haram, al-Qaeda, al-Shabaab -- really is compared to this one where your only real fear is that someone may wound your tender feelings.


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    The Time Has Come For Congress To Pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform

    Before you get mad at me, let me be clear.

    I’m not talking about the sort of reform that Obama wants.

    I’m not talking about the sort of reform that the illegals are demanding

    I’m talking the sort of reform that the American people want.

    A new poll shows voters want illegal immigrants aggressively deported, their gaming of the anchor-baby system put to an end and their welfare cut off. Yet the political class still isn't listening. They may regret it.

    The message from the Rasmussen telephone survey of 1,000 likely voters taken on April 1-2 couldn't have been clearer: It's time to enforce immigration laws or just forget about having any.

    "More voters than ever feel the United States is not aggressive enough in deporting those who are here illegally, even as President Obama continues to push his plan to make up to 5 million illegal immigrants safe from deportation," Rasmussen announced.

    The polling group found that 62% of likely voters think the government is not aggressive enough in deporting illegals, up from 52% a year ago. Fifty-one percent think illegals who have "anchor babies" born in the U.S. to discourage deportation shouldn't be exempt from the law, and 54% believe a child born to an illegal immigrant shouldn't get birthright citizenship. These two findings show sharp upturns from the year earlier.

    In addition, an overwhelming 83% of voters think welfare applicants should have to prove they're here legally before receiving federal, state or local services and cash — a position that has stayed rock hard for four years.

    Last time I checked, We the People were supposed to be in charge of our government – not Them the Border Jumping Foreigners and the politicians who think there is some sort of advantage to selling out the citizenry in order to appease the law-breakers. Pass the laws necessary to implement the views of Americans – and send forth the constitutional amendment needed to fix the anchor baby loophole in the Fourteenth Amendment. You know – represent us for a change.


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    April 05, 2015

    The Future Of Religious Freedom in America -- The Coming Persecution

    This week's Watcher's Council Forum question asks if religious freedom is seriously threatened in America. Sadly, I believe it is, despite the clear promise of the Bill of Rights that free exercise of religion is a right guaranteed to every American. The reality is that this particular liberty has been under assault for some time, and that it will only get worse.

    Who is leading the assault? Secular leftists and those ostensibly a part of religious communities (often in leadership positions) who have been co-opted by the siren call of progressive ideology. The Secular Left has long been contemptuous of people of faith. Want an example? Just look at the "bitter clinger" rhetoric of the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Listen to entertainers like Bill Maher, John Stewart, and Stephen Colbert. Consider the manner in which our elite institutions treat religious believers, especially Christians.

    Sadly, though, the weapon they wield is one placed in their hands by a conservative man of faith -- Justice Antonin Scalia. His opinion in Employment Division v. Smith overturned several decades of Free Exercise jurisprudence that had shown deference to freedom of conscience and required that government show a compelling interest before it burdens the free exercise of religion. The long history of both legislative and judicial accommodation of religious belief and conduct was therefore jettisoned in the name of what was deemed to be an originalist interpretation not particularly supported by either the text of the Constitution nor the writings of the Framers. Indeed, it is not unreasonable to speculate that Scalia's decision was based more on an antipathy to drug use than fidelity to the text of the First Amendment or longstanding precedents.

    Initially, religious believers of all stripes united to see that the customary religious protections were written into statutory law. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), and later the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA), were efforts designed to see that the law respected religious freedom. But when the principles of religious freedom the two sides agreed upon ran into the liberal desire to see gay marriage and government mandated health insurance become a part of America's social landscape, the demand that traditional religious believers be free to opt out of participation in elements of both that offended their faith led the Left to reject Free Exercise outside of the confines of church buildings and the privacy of one's home.

    This past week we saw this matter come to fruition, as activists in two states forced changes into state RFRAs that will guarantee that Christian (and Muslim and even some Jewish) businesspeople choose between honoring their faith and honoring the law. Nobody is talking about banning members of any protected class from their businesses -- they are simply seeking to opt out of participation in specific events that offend their religion. But in the name of non-discrimination, those who believe as a matter of faith that homosexual marriage is an abomination before God will be forced to participate despite the fact that they view doing so as endangering their immortal soul -- and failure to do so could cost them their businesses and their life savings, and perhaps even result in their incarceration.

    Unfortunately, the same "civil rights" laws that require these people of faith to accommodate sin are not reciprocal. Just last week, in the midst of the dispute over RFRAs in Indiana and Arkansas, the state of Colorado ruled that it was not an act of unlawful discrimination for a baker to refuse to provide a cake expressing traditional Christian beliefs on marriage.

    DENVER - Colorado's legal battles between religious freedom and gay rights continue to play out in the not-so-sweet arena of bakery cake requests.

    Last week, the Colorado Civil Rights Division ruled that Denver's Azucar Bakery did not discriminate against William Jack, a Christian from Castle Rock, by refusing to make two cakes with anti-gay messages and imagery that he requested last year.

    * * *

    The agency's decision found that the baker did not discriminate against Jack based on his creed. Instead, officials state the evidence shows Silva refused to make the cakes because the customer's requests included "derogatory language and imagery."

    The baker said "in the same manner [she] would not accept [an order from] anyone wanting to make a discriminatory cake against Christians, [she] will not make one that discriminates against gays," according to the decision.
    "The evidence demonstrates that [Silva] would deny such requests to any customer, regardless of creed," the civil rights agency's decision stated.

    Now we all know that the state would not have accepted the argument that a baker would not serve anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, who sought a cake for a same sex wedding. The reality is that the agency is allowing someone a way out of complying with non-discrimination law that they would allow in no other situation. Thus there is no longer equal protection of the law when it comes to matter of non-discrimination law, and the deck is stacked against believers.

    We know what is coming next. Ross Douhat asked a series of questions about how far conformity should be enforced on matters of gay marriage. Should people be denied employment or lose employment for holding the wrong view? Should religious institutions that reject gay marriage be legally disadvantaged for that belief? Should attempting to pass on traditional views on sexual morality be deemed child abuse and result in the loss of parental rights? In other words, should the holding of religious beliefs that were mainstream and consistent with the law a mere two decades ago become an offense under the law? Sadly, many of the commenters on his piece were supportive of undercutting religious freedom.

    The more I've looked at this matter over the last week, the more I have come to realize that for Christians the future may come to look very much like the situation that faced the first followers of Christ in the decades following the crucifixion until the time of Constantine.

    IncenseCatacomesMartyrdom.jpg

    And sadly, the same will be true of our Torah-believing Jewish brethren -- the days of Antiochus Epiphanes will be revisited upon them by the Progressives, cheered on by the their secular Jewish cousins. But this will not, I would suspect, be the case for the followers of Islam, which has come under the special protection progressives due their shared value of anti-Americanism.


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