Kyle Mantyla's blog

Barber: 'We Know [Obama's] Sympathies Lie With These Muslim Nations And Against Christianity'

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio broadcast, Matt Barber and Mat Staver discussed a recent report from Open Doors USA that found that most anti-Christian persecution happening around the world is occurring in Muslim nations.

Barber, of course, used this as an excuse to trot out the standard Religious Right claim that liberals and Muslims are both persecuting Christians at home and abroad because both groups hate God's truth. But the point of the broadcast today was to discuss why American Christians have remained silent while their Christian brothers and sisters around the world have suffered brutal persecution and Barber didn't really know ... but he did know why President Obama hasn't spoken out: because he hates Christians:

Staver: it's one thing to criticize the administration but it's another thing about the church itself. Where are the voices of Christians here in the United States rising to the level of saying that this Christian persecution needs to be addressed?

Barber: Let's parse this out because I think that there are different motives here. When it comes to President Obama, as we discussed in a recent recording of Faith and Freedom, it's pretty clear; for him to criticize these Muslim nations for killing, for murdering and torturing Christians, it doesn't fit the narrative. We know that his sympathies lie with these Muslim nations and against Christianity and against Christians and so it's not surprising that he would choose to be silent. I'm disgusted by it but I'm not surprised by it.

I'm baffled by the silence of the church, as you mentioned, here in the United States and I don't know what the motive of that silence is other than perhaps fear or apathy and it's time for the church to get behind and support these Christians who are being martyred across the world.

So President Obama hasn't spoken out about this persecution because he hates Christians, but Christians haven't spoken out about it either ... for who knows what reason?

We also like to simply note that neither Barber nor Staver have said much, if anything, about this issue in all the years we have been listening to their programs. If Barber is "baffled" by the silence of the church in talking about this issue, he just so happens have a daily radio broadcast and a weekly column that he could be using to combat that, but over the last few years, he apparently hasn't felt that it was much of a priority.

Klingenschmitt: 'It Should Be Illegal To Recruit Minors Into Homosexual Sin'

We can now add "Dr. Chaps" Gordon Klingenschmitt to the ever-growing list of anti-gay Religious Right activists defending Russia's anti-gay law, declaring on his "Pray In Jesus Name" show today that "it should be illegal to recruit minors into homosexual sin."

In defending Russia's law, Klingenschmitt explained that recruiting children into homosexuality is "totally illegal in the economy and law of God" and, citing Luke 17, declared that "if you're recruiting children into sin, Jesus says you should have the death penalty."

"It's always going to be against God's law," he said, "not only to be gay but especially to recruit children and cause them to stumble":

Another Religious Right Tale Of Anti-Christian Victimization Gets Thoroughly Debunked

We have seen it happen time and again: some right-wing group issues a one-sided press release about a student supposedly being unfairly discriminated against in school simply for exercising their Christian faith and the entire Religious Right movement immediately flies into an outrage, spreading the story far and wide as undisputed truth. Then days or weeks later, the real story emerges once school officials are given an opportunity to investigate and explain what really happened and it inevitably reveals that the Religious Right version was completely false, by which point it is already too late because the fake version has already been accepted as gospel and just continues to spread forever.

The most recent example is the story of six-year old Brynn Williams, who was supposedly told that she was not allowed to deliver a presentation on her family's Christmas tradition because she brought the star that her family places atop its Christmas tree, which represents the Star of Bethlehem.

Serial fabricator Todd Starnes was among the first to blindly promote the story:

Brynn Williams decided to bring the Star of Bethlehem that adorned the top of her family’s Christmas tree. She also worked on a one minute presentation to explain that her family’s tradition is to remember the birth of Jesus at Christmas time.

“Our Christmas tradition is to put a star on top of our tree,” the little girl said. “The star is named the Star of Bethlehem. The three kings followed the star to find baby Jesus, the Savior of the world.”

Before the child could utter another word, the teacher intervened, according to Robert Tyler, the general counsel for Advocates for Faith & Freedom – the law firm representing the Williams family.

“Brynn’s teacher said, ‘Stop right there! Go take your seat,’” Tyler said. “Bryn was not allowed to finish her presentation by reciting the Bible verse, John 3:16.”

Tyler said the little girl was the only student in the class not allowed to finish her presentation.

“After Brynn took her seat, the teacher explained to Brynn in front of all the other students that she was not allowed to talk about the Bible or share its verses,” Tyler said.

The story was quickly picked up by just about every Religious Right news outlet and reported as truth, but now the school involved, which "withheld comment until district officials could finish an investigation into the matter," has released a statement from the teacher and school officials which completely debunks the Religious Right's version of the story.

The teacher, Tammy Williams, explained what really happened:

On Thursday, December 19th my class was getting our classroom ready for our holiday party that was to occur the next morning. We took longer than normal putting things away to ensure that the desks were clean and book boxes were put away so that tables could be used for our centers. This was normally something we did on Fridays. Because of this, we were running behind and I still had six students who needed to do their sharing. I had a very limited amount of time and needed to make sure all students had time to share. Now remember, this is sharing. They were not oral reports. Students were asked to share a family tradition. It could be anything, not just a Christmas tradition. During sharing, I work with students on looking at the audience and using clear voices. We also work on listening skills and asking questions.

This student was not the last student to present as had been reported. I still had a couple of students after her (which was the Student of the Day and the Student of the Week). When she started her share, she pulled out her golden star that I held for her as she pulled out her prepared speech
written by one of her parents. This was unusual because rarely does a student have a prepared statement to read. As I held the star, the student began to read her statement. I helped her with a few words that she was having trouble with. I decided that I would have the student stop after sharing about Mary and Joseph. I felt that it would take too long and I still needed her to take her question and I had a few clarifying questions for her as well. At this point, I simply said the following, “Ok, stop here and you get one question.” She simply put her paper down and picked a student who asked her a question. I also asked her, “Who puts the star on the tree? Do you take turns?” I even suggested that her dad could lift her up to let her put it on the tree. After that, she put her star away and sat with the class while we finished with the other students. I monitor all students this way. She at no time complained or acted sad. She was as happy as always.

I want to be very clear about the following.

At no time did I ever tell the student that she could not read the bottom section because it was a Bible verse nor did she ask if she could finish. I never told her to “Stop right there!” or “Go take your seat!” or reprimand her in front of the class for sharing from the Bible. It just did not happen. This subject matter was never discussed. I decided to stop her at that point so the other students would get their share in before the bell rang. My students have always been free to share their ideas.

What saddens me is that this story was twisted into lies and brought to the media. I have never sat down and discussed this directly with the family or the student. I am instead being used to push an agenda for the Advocates for Faith and Freedom.

The school's principal, Ami Paradise, likewise released a statement declaring that the claims of anti-Christian bigotry made by Advocates of Faith and Freedom were entirely bogus:

Over the past week, I have received countless phone calls and 126 mean-spirited emails from across the country as a result of the claims that the Advocates of Faith and Freedom have made against one of my teachers, the school district, and myself.  These claims are simply not true.

When I met with the parent on December 20, 2013, she shared that she and her husband were upset that their child was unable to finish her presentation and that they thought it was because it contained a Bible verse. There were absolutely no claims of humiliation or bullying by the classroom teacher. No claims that their child was told to take her seat or that she could not talk about the Bible. These claims have been made in the midst of a media spotlight in order to sensationalize a story. The truth is, there were other students left to present before the end of the day, and there was just not enough time. 

Furthermore, when I met with this parent I never told her that her child may not share her beliefs aloud to other students nor did I try to stifle her freedom of speech in any way. I told the parent that I would follow up with the classroom teacher, and I sent her the results of my findings along with the copy of the board policy regarding religion on December 24th, 2013. I have not heard from her since. Not once to tell me that she did not agree with my findings, not once to ask for a classroom change for her child. In fact, with the exception of today, this student has attended school every day since this incident, in the same exact classroom where this alleged incident occurred.

Lastly, I would be remiss if I did not address the classroom teacher in the center of this controversy-- Mrs. Tammy Williams.  Mrs. Tammy Williams is one of the finest educators I have ever worked with. She is an AMAZING first grade teacher, taught my own son last year, and I would not hesitate to put my younger son in her class. She does not deserve the harassment or bullying that she has received, the questioning of her professional skills or judgment, or the claims that she harmed this child in any way. 

I stand behind Mrs. Tammy Williams 110% and find it extremely unfortunate that the Advocates for Faith and Freedom have irrevocably caused damage to her good name. The days will pass and this story will not be at the top of the news for long, but the damage that it has done to the good names of Helen Hunt Jackson Elementary School, Mrs. Tammy Williams, and myself will be difficult to repair.

We literally cannot even count the number of times we have seen this exact scenario play out over the years as Religious Right groups gin up an entirely fake controversy in order to play the victim, which then spreads far and wide before officials have even had an opportunity to comment. And we will undoubtedly continue to see it happen again and again so long as people like Starnes and others in the Religious Right grievance machine feel justified in pushing blatantly false stories because doing so helps them advance their agenda.

Right Wing Round-Up - 1/28/14

Right Wing Leftovers - 1/28/14

  • Robert Knight says the message of President Obama State of the Union Address tonight will be "I am now in charge of everything."
  • We haven't heard much about the "North American Union" in recent years, but rest assured that WND is still covering it.
  • We are not sure what this has to do with Dinesh D'Souza, but apparently Gary Bauer thinks they are related: "How is it that the Obama Administration did not act when Major Nidal Hasan was engaged in activities that should have set off alarm bells, but somehow it is routinely uncovering the officer who drank too much in Moscow, who used fake poker chips in Iowa or the top general who had an affair?"
  • Gary Cass attacks Greg Abbot for failing to prevent Marlise Munoz from being taken off of life support: "Contact Attorney General Abbot, who is both pro-life and disabled, and running for governor. Demand to know why did he not defend Texas law and the life of another Texan who was potentially disabled?"
  • The Pacific Justice Institute really hates gender neutral bathrooms.
  • Finally, Bryan Fischer scientifically proves that the earth is less than ten thousand years old.

Fischer: Beyoncé's 'Sasha Fierce' Persona Is A Demonic Spirit

Like Glenn Beck, Bryan Fischer was disturbed by Katy Perry's Grammy performance and wondered on his radio program today if she and Beyoncé had sold their souls to the Devil.

Fischer was particularly alarmed by Beyoncé's performance at last year's Super Bowl because it was so Satanic that Beyoncé herself was physically transformed right in the middle of the show, becoming indwelt by the demonic spirit that Beyoncé had named "Sasha Fierce":

The good news for Fischer is that Beyoncé "killed off" the Sasha Fierce persona back in 2010, so he has no more need to worry.

Beck: Katy Perry's Grammy Performance Was 'Full-Fledged Witchcraft And Demonic Glorification'

Glenn Beck was deeply disturbed by Sunday night's Grammy Awards show, but not for the reason all the other Religious Right activists are outraged. In Beck's case, he was upset by Katy Perry's "Dark Horse" performance, which was unmistakably "demonic."

Calling the performance "full-fledged witchcraft and demonic glorification," Beck said Perry's performance is further proof that American society is worshiping a false, demonic god ... "and it's not going to end well":

Erik Rush: Sally Kohn Is An 'Obnoxious, Maladjusted Lesbian' Who Is Pushing Society Toward Violent Social Unrest

Shortly after declaring on his radio show yesterday that seeing same-sex couples get married during the Grammy Awards on Sunday is the sort of that "makes you want to vomit," Erik Rush turned his attention to a tweet sent out by Sally Kohn a few days ago saying that she wants to see a Disney movie in which a princess marries another princess. Rush warned that this sort of deviance is pushing society into civil unrest that will result in people going "homo-hunting" and violently attacking their gay neighbors. 

Calling Kohn an "obnoxious, maladjusted lesbian," Rush said that she was exactly the sort of person who is pushing society toward a violent breakdown when lunatics and "people who have just been pushed to the limit" finally snap and start attacking people like Sally Kohn ... which won't really bother Rush "because she sort of served to bring it about."

These people will be pushed over the edge, Rush said, because gay activists advocated for films where two princesses get married or "want to have anal fisting labs in grade school" and are generally working to "oversexualize children." As a result, "you could see a lot of people who don't deserve to get hurt, get hurt because of people like Sally Kohn":

Beck: Criticism Of Tom Perkins Proves 'The Socialist Revolution Is Here'

It has been a while since Glenn Beck dedicated his opening monologue to misrepresenting disparate global events in order to weave together an incoherent explanation of just how America has turned into a tyrannical communist/fascist/Nazi dictatorship.

But that was his message again last night, spurred on by his outrage over the fact that people were offended by a letter to the editor published in the Wall Street Journal in which billionaire venture capitalist Tom Perkins compared the "progressive war on the American one percent" to the demonization of the Jews during the Holocaust.

Perkins has since apologized and Beck is outraged over the fact that Perkins has been "savagely beaten in public" for simply telling the truth.

"We are Germany 1930," Beck said. "You can deny it all you want, but the socialist revolution is here," As proof, Beck pointed to the fact that Perkins' company, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, sent out a tweet distancing itself from his comments:

Tom Perkins has not been involved in KPCB in years. We were shocked by his views expressed today in the WSJ and do not agree.

That tweet is, for Beck, proof that Perkins is being ostracized just as the Jews were under the Nazi regime.

"Is this a healthy society that says this?" Beck asked, before reading the tweet. "Welcome to the brave new world, gang":

Fischer: Performing Gay Marriages At The Grammys Was An 'Abomination' Because Same-Sex Parenting Is 'A Form Of Child Abuse'

We can add Bryan Fischer to the list of anti-gay activists who were outraged by the Grammy Awards, as he proclaimed on his radio show yesterday that Beyoncé's opening number a "complete raunch-fest" that was "inexcusably tawdry" and only served to set the tone for the "abomination" of seeing several gay couples get married later in the program during a performance of the Macklemore and Ryan Lewis song "Same Love."

"If you care about children," Fischer said, "this thing ought to appall you because gay marriage is bad for children. In fact, same-sex parenting - I'm going to be very direct here - same-sex parenting is a form of child abuse":

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