Brian Tashman's blog

FRC Cites Bogus George Washington Story To Promote Christian Nationalism

The Family Research Council is outraged that the Air Force Academy has made it optional to say “So help me God” in its honor oath, claiming that the new policy is discriminatory against religious cadets…even though anyone can still say the phrase. On his radio program today, Tony Perkins of FRC said that the new policy is disrespectful of George Washington:

Who's running the United States Air Force: General Mark Welsh or Mikey Weinstein? Hello, this is Tony Perkins with the Family Research Council in Washington. Anti-Christian crusader Mikey Weinstein recently probed the Air Force Academy. The Air Force Academy Superintendent responded in 68 minutes, when he marked down his objections to the phrase, "So help me God," contained in the Academy honor code. Weinstein has been trying to drive Evangelicals out of the Academy for over a decade. During the tenure of one Superintendent, he boasted that he had a bath code that immediately connected him with the Academy boss. His complaint this time was a poster that included the honor oath with the phrase, "So help me God." Lieutenant General Michelle Johnson said the oath is being reviewed because the Academy values an inclusive environment that promotes dignity and respect for all. Really? Does that include those like General George Washington who initiated the phrase, "So help me God," or does that inclusion only make room for those who want to dismantle America's Christian heritage?

On the same note, FRC senior fellow Ken Blackwell cited Washington as a reason to keep the phrase a requirement:

Let's see: Why is that phrase so offensive? George Washington was a pretty successful general. And he took the oath as our first President in New York City on April 30, 1789.

When Chancellor Livingston swore Washington in as Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, Washington added four words to the Constitutionally prescribed oath:

So Help Me God

Question for Mikey and Murfs: If George Washington could add those four words, and if every President since could add those four words, why should they offend an Air Force Academy cadet?

But as George Mason University history professor Peter Henriques writes, the story about Washington is most certainly a myth. In fact, James Madison excluded the words “So help me God” while working on a committee drafting an oath bill.

There is absolutely no extant contemporary evidence that President Washington altered the language of the oath as laid down in Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” A long letter by the French foreign minister Comte de Moustier, who attended the ceremony, repeated the oath verbatim and did not include the additional words. Apparently, it was not until 65 years after the event that the story that Washington added this phrase first appeared in a published volume. In his book, The Republican Court, Rufus Griswold cited a childhood memory of Washington Irving as his source. It took another 27 years before the first clearly documented case of a President adding the words, “So help me God,” was recorded — when Chester A. Arthur took the oath in 1881.



Proponents of the myth contend that Washington had expressed no personal objection to saying “So help me God” and had routinely taken such oaths during the colonial era. Perhaps, they contend, he simply added it as an afterthought or because he was caught up in the solemnity and reverence of the moment. While at first glance this is plausible, it seems certain that any such modification of the oath would have created comment at the time that would have survived in the historical record.

The reason for this assertion is at exactly the same time as these inaugural events were unfolding, the first Congress was debating what oath the new members of the new federal government should take so as to comply with the Constitution. Article Six called for an oath but specifically added, “No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” Early arrivals to the House of Representatives had taken an oath that included the words, “So help me God.” But, following the lead of a committee led by James Madison, legislators passed a new oath act on April 27, 1789 — just three days before Washington’s inauguration — that excluded the words “So help me God.” The Senate, after adding unrelated amendments, passed the bill on May 5, 1789. Would the Senate have passed an oath bill without the words, “So help me God,” only five days after the great hero of the American people “solemnly” and “with fervor” added them to his own oath? And do so without any contemporary comment surviving?

Taken together, the complete lack of contemporary evidence, George Washington’s political philosophy of strictly following the Constitution and the concurrent debate over the proper wording of oaths under the new Constitution make it virtually certain that George Washington did not add the words “So help me God” to his inaugural oath.

The New York Times adds:

It’s no surprise, then, that Washington should become the subject of the recent genre of biographical writing that focuses on the machinery of fame and the ways in which it manipulates, ignores, embellishes or distorts the known facts about a famous individual’s life and work. In “Inventing George Washington,” Edward G. Lengel — editor in chief of the Papers of George Washington and a professor at the University of Virginia — says he intends to examine “Washington myths and mythmakers” and trace “the means by which they have defined and redefined the founder from the beginning of the 19th century up to the present day.”

...

In addition, Mr. Lengel says, many efforts have been made to “prove” that Washington added the phrase “so help me God” to the presidential oath of office in 1789, even though “the evidence is against” this argument: “There are no contemporary accounts indicating that Washington said ‘so help me God.’ Indeed, the Comte de Moustier, the French foreign minister, who stood near Washington as he took the oath and recorded it word for word, did not include the phrase in his meticulous account of the event.”

“In sum,” Mr. Lengel argues, “any attempt to prove that Washington added the words ‘so help me God’ requires mental gymnastics of the sort that would do credit to the finest artist of the flying trapeze. How much easier, then, just to assert over and over that it happened without making any attempt to justify it in the historical record and then appeal to it as a ‘tradition’ that must never be broken. Such, at least, has been the approach taken by defenders of this story since its first appearance in 1854, and the results have met their desires. Since Chester Arthur in 1881, presidents have included the words in almost every known oath of office, with greater and lesser degrees of drama. Though atheists, secular humanists and outraged academics occasionally pop up to protest, the tradition has become set in stone.”

WND: Obamacare Causes Suicide

Apparently, Americans will be so depressed about Obamacare that they will take their own lives…or so claims WorldNetDaily columnist Gina Loudon.

Loudon predicts that Obamacare will target women, gun owners, veterans and gay people, who will begin to fear that they will lose their reputations, jobs or lives under the Affordable Care Act as bureaucrats begin to leak information about pelvic exams, spousal abuse and porn addiction:

A 16-year-old goes to the doctor for her first gynecological exam. She wants to tell the doctor about concerns she has but she is afraid of it being disclosed and destroying her bright future. She read a story about doctors being paid tens of thousands of dollars to turn over their electronic medical records to the government, and she can’t trust that her secrets will be kept safe.

A 28-year-old divorcee stands alone in terror, in the corner of her room. She was denied a gun license because she disclosed feeling suicidal when her abusive husband beat her that last time. She has nowhere to go to be safe, and no way to keep her child safe from the man who threatened to kill them both. She doesn’t sleep, and she can’t function at work, so she is worried she will lose her job.

A 75-year-old widower sits quietly with a pistol pointed at his chest. He feels completely alone, betrayed by the country he fought for. His most private data was stolen when a laptop was taken from a cafeteria at the Department of Health and Human Services. Someone posted all of his information publicly, and now he fears his most private information will be made public. There are secrets of a man’s heart that he wants kept a secret. He regrets the day he went for counseling to gain control over a pornography addiction. How could this happen and threaten his legacy, after so many years of living responsibly? He cannot deal with that reality.

A young, gay man stands in front of a roulette table, his last hope to pay off the fines from the IRS since he disclosed his income to sign up for Obamacare, and was subsequently audited for a disparity in his tax forms. There are rumors of many gays being targeted by the current administration, though it doesn’t matter now and he can’t prove it anyway. He says a silent prayer as he lays down his last $250 in hopes that he can multiply it to stay out of jail.



As a behavioral expert, I have already heard from people that there is just certain information they don’t feel like they can discuss with a counselor any longer. From older people, I have heard that there are medical conditions they don’t feel they can discuss with their doctors for fear of it being disclosed. From constitutional experts, I have heard that Obamacare essentially leaves constitutional rights, especially the Bill of Rights, in tatters.

Liberty has eroded to such a degree that some wonder if it can ever be restored. But personal liberty, the bright light that distinguishes us as the freest nation of all time, has been permanently dimmed.

This administration has withheld health care without ever revoking a medical device. It has taken guns and lives without overturning the Second Amendment. It has caused suicides and deaths with only the weapon of Obamacare. It has made criminals of otherwise law-abiding citizens, while criminals go free. It has done all of this with the silent threat of what can happen under a system that gives more power to government than it has ever had before.



For all of the chaos and commotion Obamacare will inflict on lives, more counseling will be needed. Unfortunately for the citizens of America, they might be afraid to seek it. Obamacare is anything but compassionate or helpful. It is the most unspeakably destructive piece of legislation to ever impose itself on our nation, and the psychological implications are devastating.

Larry Klayman's Five Reasons To Overthrow Obama

Larry Klayman is calling on “millions to occupy Washington D.C.” to “literally camp in Washington D.C. and not leave until we get results.” He writes in a brochure for the event [PDF] that the camp will be in front of the White House but will be so huge it will spread across the city: “In conjunction with the masses gathered in LaFayette Park [sic], we encourage millions to occupy parks, sidewalks, public areas.”

Klayman, who at a recent rally with Ted Cruz and Sarah Palin urged Tea Partiers to join his uprising, today in WorldNetDaily issues a list of Watergate-esque scandals supposedly imperiling the president.

The first on the list, of course, is the claim that President Obama was born in Kenya and is therefore not a “natural born citizen.” (We can’t wait for Klayman’s campaign against Canadian-born future presidential candidate Cruz.) Also included is the fact that war memorials were shut down when the GOP shut down the government and the shooting by Capitol Police of a woman who drove her car up against White House barricades.

Luckily for us, Klayman is writing a new Declaration of Independence to guide the nation after his successful anti-Obama coup. “I am preparing a new Declaration of Independence to present and ‘declare’ at the White House gates on Tuesday, Nov. 19,” Klayman writes. “I call upon all of you to join us on Nov. 19, 2013, to Reclaim American Now before it is too late and our nation collapses under the heavy weight of Obama’s long and growing train of abuses and usurpations.”

So it is too with Obama and his ultra-leftist government agents who have done all they can to dismantle the nation and remold it in his socialist concept of body politic, believing that We the People lack the focus or resolve, 237 years after our first Declaration of Independence, to again rise up and remove them. Consider these “Facts” requiring immediate action:

1. Obama is not a natural born citizen as required by the Constitution eligible to run for and be elected president of the United States. Having lied about his place of birth, which was likely Kenya and not within the borders of territories of the United States, and not having two parents who were American citizens at the time of his birth, he later, after years of demands by concerned citizens, produced on the White House website a fraudulent birth certificate to try to subterfuge his deceit. Despite election law complaints in various states to prove that Obama is not a natural born citizen, the courts, as has become the norm, have thus far turned a blind eye, obviously out of fear of the tyrant. Not one court has legitimately addressed the law, and We the People have been abandoned by our judges, who have generally become highly politicized and corrupt.

2. The growing list of what the tyrant calls his “phony scandals,” from Benghazi-gate, Navy SEAL-gate, IRS-gate, NSA-gate, to Fast and Furious-gate and now Obamacare-gate, has been swept under the carpet by Obama and his pliant and highly corrupt attorney general, Eric Holder. Congress, while holding hearings on these scandals, lacks the courage or will to seek justice and to impeach and convict Obama.

3. Obama and his minions continue to leak highly classified and damaging national security information, such as American cyber-warfare and U.S. Israeli war plans should Iran’s nuclear facilities need to be destroyed, as low-level whistleblowers like Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning are burned at the legal stake. Obama and the likes of Hillary Clinton have damaged U.S. national security far worse than Snowden or Manning, yet they walk off scot-free.

4. Benefits to our military veterans and access to war memorials can be shut down under the guise of national debt issues, but Obama, members of Congress and other so-called government leaders continued to receive their “perks” without interruption.

5. The recent killing of a mother who, due to her postpartum depression, drove her car into the White House gates, was unnecessary and murderous, just as the Obama administration’s release of the identity of Navy SEAL Team VI following the killing of Osama bin Laden led to their death at the hands of the Taliban in a shoot-down of their helicopter on Aug. 6, 2011, in a raid called Extortion 17.

The long list of repeated injuries and usurpations is too long to put in this column, but I am preparing a new Declaration of Independence to present and “declare” at the White House gates on Tuesday, Nov. 19, when Obama’s resignation is demanded by the millions who we hope to have present that day.

I call upon all of you to join us on Nov. 19, 2013, to Reclaim American Now before it is too late and our nation collapses under the heavy weight of Obama’s long and growing train of abuses and usurpations.

Right Wing Round-Up - 10/25/13

  • Good As You: ‘If only he’d been more anti-gay…’: A look at Maggie Gallagher & fellows’ silly ‘GOP autopsy.’
  • Towleroad: Baylor University Votes To Remove ‘Homosexual Acts’ From School’s ‘Sexual Misconduct Code.’ 

Right Wing Leftovers - 10/25/13

  • Rand Paul will join Ken Cuccinelli and Jerry Falwell, Jr. at a campaign stop at Liberty University. 
  • The right-wing myth that Obama is behind a change in the Marines’ dress cover has become so widespread that the Commandant of the Marine Corps had to put out a statement refuting the charges.
  • Rick Scarborough “must respectfully take issue with Dr. Russell Moore” who, he says won’t defend Christians who “are persecuted for refusing to bend the knee to the gay agenda.” 
  • Finally, “ex-gay” Dennis Jernigan describes his “anthem for ex-homosexuals.”

Bradlee Dean: Obama Pushing For Sharia Law, Discriminating Against Straight People

Bradlee Dean, who has entertained the notion that President Obama is secretly gay, thinks that the president is practicing “discrimination towards heterosexuals” and “advocates Shariah law.”

“[L]ook at who President Barrack Hussein Obama and this current administration have appointed to key positions in government–over 225 homosexuals,” Dean writes in a WorldNetDaily column published yesterday. “Talk about discrimination towards heterosexuals.”

Dean, who once praised radical Muslims who want to execute gay people, calling them “more moral than even American Christians”, chides “radical homosexual communities” for not questioning “the Muslims’ call for the execution of the homosexuals.”

In fact, he thinks that Rep. Keith Ellison is lying about his support for LGBT equality as part of taqiyya, or the concealment of religious beliefs due to the threat of violence, in order to undermine Christianity and elevate political Islam. Of course, Dean even manages to link Ellison to 9/11.

This last week, the radical Muslim congressman, Keith Ellison, was again proud to be named the vice-chairman of the Congressional LGBT Caucus.

Hmmm.

Outside of the fact that Rep. Ellison, the first radial Muslim in the U.S. House (who swore into office with his hand upon the Quran) feels safe enough to take shots at me on a one-sided national platform (to the Daily Beast Keith stated to the American people that they “may not know how extreme this guy [Bradlee Dean] is”), what is interesting here is the fact that we cannot get Keith on LIVE radio to confront my “extremism” on an open platform. Keith likes straining at the gnat while he swallows the camel! So Keith, let’s go to the extreme and show America how extreme YOU really are! Now it is my turn.



Act For America’s Brigitte Gabriel said during an interview in a video called “Stealth Jihadie” that “Muslims can lie and the lie is permissible as long as the lie basically prepares the way for Islam to be either victorious or to win an argument against an enemy.”

Gabriel goes on to say that during Keith Ellison’s victory party, Allah Akbar (“God is greatest” – “Allah is greater”) were the words that were shouted. Those who perpetrated the downing of the twin towers in New York City on 9/11 said these same words.

Speaking of extremes, why is it that the Muslims have yet to be called into question by the radical homosexual communities concerning the Muslims’ call for the execution of the homosexuals?



Taking it another step, look at who President Barrack Hussein Obama and this current administration have appointed to key positions in government–over 225 homosexuals. Talk about discrimination towards heterosexuals.

This president not only entertains Muslims in the White House, but also advocates Shariah Law through his support of the Muslim Brotherhood, America’s sworn enemies.

Fischer: American Family Association May Sue The Military

In an interview today with WorldNetDaily, American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer said that his group may file a lawsuit against the US military because the AFA was included on a list of domestic hate groups in an army training. Fischer said that Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) is “demanding answers” from the Pentagon about the list and why the military is “even spending time focusing on groups that are made up of American citizens.”

“We are considering legal action, we think this is defamatory, it’s outrageous, it’s libelous,” Fischer said. “It’s not beyond the possibility that we would resort to some kind of legal action.”

Fischer added that he found it “particularly offensive” that the military compared the AFA to the Westboro Baptist Church since “you’re not going to find a stronger supporter of the American military than the American Family Association.”

“The reality is Fred Phelps and his group takes a view completely different than we do.”

Of course, the AFA and Westboro aren’t all that different. For example, both groups believe that God is using natural disasters to punish people for homosexuality.

Carol Bauer: Spend The Holidays Telling Young People How Obama Is Terrible

Gary Bauer leads a wide number of organizations — American Values, Campaign for American Values, Campaign for Working Families, Americans United to Preserve Marriage — and it has been a very lucrative set-up for him and his wife, Carol.

Today, Carol Bauer emailed Campaign for Working Families members a “prayer alert” asking them to use the holiday season as an opportunity to tell young people why Barack Obama is such a terrible president, as “today’s twenty-somethings may now be awakening to political realities.”

“The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays will be an opportunity to give those young adults in our lives a listening ear, empathy, the chance to vent about what they thought would come of the broad brush promises of a president who is forever in campaign mode and perhaps some advice and encouragement in just the right tone,” she writes. “It is my prayer that these days will be a wake-up call to the next generation about what is and is not possible in the real world of governing.”

She concluded the email by asking people to pray for God to “end the poisonous rhetoric in our political discourse,”eventhoughpoisonous rhetoric is what Bauer’s all about.

Winston Churchill described their struggle in epic terms and brought out the best in the Brits. We knew the history, but only as we stood in the cramped War Rooms and viewed the huge maps on the wall, which were marked with pins indicating the presence of German subs many just miles off our East Coast, did the enormity of what they faced become tangible. It was a teachable moment about what a free people are capable of doing during a time of crisis.

It strikes me that the United States faces a teachable moment right now, only ours is on the home front. The past weeks have been marked by breathtaking headlines about the government shutdown and the possibility of an economic apocalypse based on a debt ceiling crisis. In the midst of all that, the president's signature legislation, Obamacare, was formally launched.



Interestingly, today's twenty-somethings may now be awakening to political realities. They heard the warnings but cast them aside. Now they are coming into adulthood in a country where good paying jobs are scarce, health insurance costs are staggering, America's debt is soaring and the American Dream seems elusive. Three of every four Americans tell pollsters the country is moving in the wrong direction.

The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays will be an opportunity to give those young adults in our lives a listening ear, empathy, the chance to vent about what they thought would come of the broad brush promises of a president who is forever in campaign mode and perhaps some advice and encouragement in just the right tone.

Sometimes the most enduring lessons are not learned in the classroom. It is my prayer that these days will be a wake-up call to the next generation about what is and is not possible in the real world of governing.

I pray that everyone who reads this Prayer Alert will have an opportunity to touch the life of a young adult in the next two months as extended families gather to spend holiday time together. May these conversations be heart-to-heart words of understanding, encouragement, and guidance to the nation's young adults -- our future leaders -- who may feel frustrated, angry and disillusioned.

Ask God for the opportunity to mentor or guide a young person who feels the country's best days are behind us. Pray that we as a country, together, would have a common desire to face facts, acknowledge what is not working, be open to change that rewards individual effort and responsibility and move in that direction in our individual choices, lifestyle and political involvement.

In addition, pray that God would heal the divisions in our country and end the poisonous rhetoric in our political discourse.
 

Paranoia-Rama: This Week In Right-Wing Lunacy - 10/25/13

We here at Right Wing Watch regularly observe how strange conspiracy theories and absurd right-wing nightmares percolate through conservative message boards and fringe websites all the way up to Fox News and the Republican Party, until they eventually become “mainstream.”

In a new feature, we’ll look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories and maniacal claims.

5. Satan Behind Sexual Misconduct Allegations Against Herman Cain

Herman Cain has finally put all those allegations of extramarital affairs and sexual harassment from different women to rest, saying that all of them were lying and are working the Devil. Cain told Real Clear Religion that Satan was behind the charges of sexual misconduct, several of which were made long before he even ran for president, as part of a plot to bring down his campaign, which he suspended before the Iowa caucus. After explaining how he was the real victim, Cain said that he now preaches about his experience in fighting the demonic spirits which supposedly manufactured the scandal.

4. Grover Norquist Is Palling Around With Terrorists

In an interview with Glenn Beck, Center for Security Policy head Frank Gaffney said that he saw terrorists meeting with Grover Noquist back when they shared an office in Washington, D.C. Rather than alert the authorities, apparently, Gaffney instead decided to wait over a decade to reveal Norquist’s terrorists allies. Norquist notes that on the date of his supposed meeting with terrorists, he wasn’t even in Washington.

Gaffney’s claims that Norquist is a terrorist fellow traveler are so farfetched that leaders of the American Conservative Union decided to kick Gaffney out of the annual right-wing summit CPAC, but that hasn’t stopped him from winning over Beck and other anti-Muslim zealots such as Jerry BoykinDavid Horowitz and Pamela Geller. Cathie Adams of Eagle Forum has found even more definitive evidence that Norquist is a secret Islamic agent: “he has a beard.”

3. Obama Will Nuke Charleston

After the right-wing conspiracy that President Obama was planning to set off a nuclear bomb in Washington, D.C. and blame it on Syria, we now have gotten word that Obama has shifted his menacing plan to Charleston, South Carolina. Survivalists have been fretting about a secret plan to nuke Charleston that went awry after generals refused and, as a result, were swiftly fired by Obama.

This conspiracy theory follows claims made by Alex Jones of InfoWars, who cited comments made by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) about how Iran could give nuclear weapons to terrorists targeting US cities like Charleston, of an imminent false flag attack: “Graham is quite literally saying that if we do not launch a war with Syria, South Carolina may be nuked. And this ultimately reeks of yet another false flag being orchestrated by the United States government in order to send us into war, or at the very least a threat.”

2. Military, NFL Facing Feminization

Did you know that President Obama is personally selecting new hats for the Marines to make them look “feminine” and “French”? The New York Post story about Obama’s wretched plan to make male Marines seem “girly” was quickly picked up by Fox Newsthe Washington Times, Newsmax, all the news sources you’d expect not to do basic research to see if Obama was actually involved in uniform cover design process.

Shockingly, he wasn’t.

But maybe that was all a plot to take away attention from the “chickification” of the NFL, which Rush Limbaugh bravely exposed. “You don’t put the NFL in pink for a month!” Limbaugh said, referring to Breast Cancer Awareness Month, “I don't think there’s any question, folks, that there is an attack on masculinity. And it’s not new. Basically the modern era of feminism, that's what it is, is a critique against masculinity.”

1. Fainting Lady An Obama Plant

When a pregnant, diabetic woman nearly fainted during President Obama’s press conference in the Rose Garden, “Lady-Patriots” was on the case to expose her as an Obama plant! Naturally, Sarah PalinMatt Drudge, and Fox News were happy to join the usual suspects like WorldNetDaily and InfoWars. “Lady Patriot” Sharon Scheutz foiled Obama’s false flag fainting to “take the focus off the disastrous website” and make people “feel warm and fuzzy for our hero President.”

“There are a lot of idiots out there,” she writes.

Indeed there are.

Stockman: 'Brilliant' Ted Cruz Saved GOP

Never mind all those polls showing the Republican Party and Tea Party’s approval ratings in the gutter: Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) is hailing his home-state senator Ted Cruz as a heroic visionary for leading the Republican push to shut down the government.

In an interview published today, Garth Kant of WorldNetDaily asks the Texas congressman if “Cruz looks more like a psychic or a genius,” to which Stockman responds that “Cruz’s ploy, which was ridiculed by many of the party members, was brilliant; he got 5.5 million names, they now know he is a man of principle, so I think it was smart.” He compared Cruz’s efforts to the Battle of the Alamo: “In every loss, there can be a victory.”

Later in the interview, Stockman floated the conspiracy theory that Obamacare “was designed to drive everybody to single payer and it’s already happening when you have millions of people being dropped from the insurance and forced on the government rolls.” He also falsely claimed that President Obama said “from the outset” of his campaign “that he wanted a single payer [system].”

The congressman said he opposes government funding to fix bugs in the Affordable Care Act’s health care exchanges: “It is like saying my house is burning so we need more gasoline to put the fire out.”

Watch:

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