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Klingenschmitt Denounced By Colorado Republican Leader Whose Seat He Hopes To Fill

The other day we noted that Gordon Klingenschmitt had been forced to issue a half-hearted apology after sending out an email asserting that gay Democratic congressman Jared Polis would soon be aligning himself with ISIS and begin beheading Christians in America.

Klingenschmitt, who is currently the GOP nominee for a seat in the Colorado legislature, was immediately denounced by both Democratic and Republican leaders in the state and now he has been specifically denounced by former House Minority Leader, Mark Waller, who held the very seat for which Klingenschmitt is now running:

Former House Minority Leader Mark Waller on Aug. 27 blasted the fellow Republican who is seeking to succeed him over his recent "horribly inappropriate" anti-gay comments.

Waller, who is not seeking re-election for his Colorado Springs-based House District 15 seat, also told Colorado Community Media that Gordon Klingenschmitt's candidacy "certainly does have an impact" on other races on the fall ballot.

...

Waller said his "11-year-old son can identify that as a hateful speech."

"I think it was horribly inappropriate to say," Waller said. "It doesn't matter if he's a person running for state representative or a person on the street. I think it's terrible to say.

"Obviously, he does not speak for me or the Republican Party."

Waller hasn't endorsed Klingenschmitt, but he wouldn't go as far as saying that he should drop out of the race - as Klingenschmitt's opponent, Democrat Lois Fornander has.

"If you're not voting for him, you're voting for the Democrat and quite honestly legislative majorities matter," Waller said. "But that puts (House District 15 voters) in a rock and a hard place in terms of who to vote for."

House District 15 is heavily Republican and Klingenschmitt is still favored to win, in spite of his recent comments.

For his part, Klingenschmitt says that he is sorry for his comments but blames it on the fact that he wrote the email late at night.

"I'm a first-time candidate," Klingenschmitt said, "and I am new at this":

Klingenschmitt apologized earlier in the week and did so again during a phone interview. He said he was trying to point out the "bad policies of Jared Polis," but that he realizes his comments were offensive.

Klingenschmitt has taken issue with Polis' backing of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. He said the legislation should have religious exceptions.

"I apologize for the hyperbole and I wrote that statement when I was tired between 1 and 2 in the morning, but I do not apologize for defending Christians for persecution."

When asked if it dawned on him that he was using language that has historically been used to persecute gays while trying to defend Christians from "persecution," Klingenschmitt said, "I don't accept the premise of the question."

Klingenschmitt said he hopes voters will see past his comments.

"I'm a first-time candidate and I am new at this," he said. "I made a mistake and I won't always say the right thing, but I do have a backbone and I will always stand on conviction."

Walid Shoebat: The Antichrist Will Be A Muslim

Walid Shoebat is a former Muslim who converted to Christianity and now makes a living peddling his anti-Islam "expertise" to various right-wing groups.

Despite the fact that his tale of having grown up as a Muslim terrorist is highly suspect, Shoebat is regularly welcomed onto shows like the American Family Association's "Today Issues," as he was this morning, to explain to AFA president Tim Wildmon that Jesus predicted that Christians would be beheaded by Muslims and that the Antichrist would be a Muslim.

Citing Revelation 20, Shoebat declared that "Jesus prophetically proclaimed that the Christians will be beheaded in the End of Days," which seems to be an odd misreading of this passage, as it was John, the author of Revelation, not Jesus, who said that "I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God" when he was taken up to Heaven.

Even Wildmon seemed confused by Shoebat's claim, but Shoebat continued on undaunted, declaring that a key component of the Antichrist will be the denial of the Father and the Son, which must mean that the Antichrist will be a Muslim.

"How hard is it to unravel the Scripture?," Shoebat asked. "When I read it, I read it as a Muslim - as a Muslim! - and I saw myself in Scripture as the enemy of God and I repented."

The rise of ISIS and its attacks on Christians, Shoebat predicted, will eventually lead to a Christian revival in America.

"So yes, this is a curse," he asserted, "but sometimes it's like the manure: it stinks to high Heaven but it makes sweet fruit in the end. I know, in the end, that America will be victorious. How do I know that? From the Bible":

Pat Robertson Is Strangely Excited About The Prospect Of ISIS Taking Over The Middle East

On today's "700 Club," Pat Robertson seemed oddly excited about the prospect of the radical Islamic group ISIS taking control over Iraq and Syria because it would be signal that the End Times are near.

Robertson cited Isaiah 19, which states that, in the End Times, Egypt and Assyria will join together and turn to the Lord, along with Israel and they will be "a blessing on the earth":

23 In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. The Assyrians will go to Egypt and the Egyptians to Assyria. The Egyptians and Assyrians will worship together. 24 In that day Israel will be the third, along with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing on the earth. 25 The Lord Almighty will bless them, saying, “Blessed be Egypt my people, Assyria my handiwork, and Israel my inheritance.”

The nation of Assyria no longer exists, but Robertson said that with ISIS taking over large portions of Iraq and Syria, it could soon be brought back to together, which means that there is an opportunity for the international community to gather together all of the Kurds in Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey to serve as "the lynchpin" that could bind all of these nations together.

"Call it Assyria," Robertson suggested, "and let them encompass current Syria and current Iraq and we would be fulfilling Bible prophecy."

"It might well happen," he said. "Was that prophetic or I'm just playing games?"

Fischer: 'The Most Patriotic Thing We Can Do Today Is To Worship The Lord Our God'

Bryan Fischer began his radio broadcast today with a reading from Leviticus 26 and a discussion about how this passage teaches that one must be a Christian in order to be a patriotic American.

Citing the passage from Leviticus in which God says that he will bless a nation "if you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands," Fischer declared that if someone wants to be a patriotic American today, that means they must "worship the Lord your God and serve him only."

"No counterfeit religions, no cults, no counterfeit versions of Christianity, no occultic Eastern religions," Fischer proclaimed. "You shall worship the Lord your God and serve him only."

Given that Fischer believes that every faith that differs from him the one he holds is a counterfeit faith, it stands to reason that those who do not share his faith must also be incapable of being true American patriots, like Fischer.

"So that's the most patriotic thing you can do today, ladies and gentlemen," he concluded, "is worship God and obey him. And when you do that, you will be making the biggest contribution you can make to the country you love":

Jody Hice Now Outraged By The Very Thing He Sought To Provoke

Back in 2008, The Alliance Defending Freedom launched a project called Pulpit Freedom Sunday that encouraged pastors to explicitly discuss political issues and candidates during their Sunday sermons in an effort to provoke the IRS into revoking their church's tax-exempt status so that the ADF could then take the IRS to court in order to challenge regulations prohibiting tax-exempt churches from engaging in direct, partisan political activism.

Among the pastors who agreed to participate was Jody Hice, a right-wing radio host who is now the GOP nominee for an open House seat from Georgia, who openly brags about his involvement on his campaign website:

In September 2008 – and in years since, Dr. Hice joined with pastors across the nation in challenging an IRS code that he considers an attack upon religious liberty. The IRS threatened churches with loss of tax-exempt status and with criminal sanctions if political issues were addressed from the pulpit. Hice took his bold stand by formally endorsing a candidate in a Sunday message and sending a copy of it to the IRS. The IRS backed down.

This Pulpit Freedom Sunday effort has taken place every year since 2008 and the IRS has consistently refused to take action against any of the churches or pastors who participated, much to the dismay of church-state separation organizations.

Eventually the Freedom From Religion Foundation filed its own lawsuit against the IRS, seeking to compel the agency to enforce these regulations and then withdrew the lawsuit after the IRS convinced the FRFF that it had not been ignoring the issue.

As Sarah Posner explained today, this latest development is now being spun by the Religious Right to claim that the IRS is colluding with atheist groups in order to target and persecute churches.

Among those fuming about this supposed persecution is none other than Jody Hice, who spent an entire radio broadcast last week declaring that it is a violation of the separation of church and state and accusing the IRS of threatening, bullying, and intimidating Christians into silence:

Of course, the entire point of the Pulpit Freedom Sunday was to get the IRS to take action against churches so that ADF could sue. And now that it looks like the IRS might actually do the very thing that ADF has been trying to provoke it to do for several years, Hice is livid even though he has personally participated in the effort to bring about this very result!

Kevin Sorbo And Rick Wiles Agree: Atheists Are Angry Because They Know God Exists

D-list actor Kevin Sorbo recently had a leading role in the right-wing Christian film "God Is Not Dead," in which he played a smug atheist college professor who seeks to destroy the faith of his students.

In promoting the film, which is now out on DVD, Sorbo has been making the rounds on Christian television and radio programs, saying that he based his portrayal in the film on all the angry and bitter atheists that he is always seeing on television.

Yesterday, Sorbo was a guest on End Times fanatic Rick Wiles' radio program, where the two concluded that atheists are so angry because they secretly know that God does exist and hate him for "judging how they live their life."

Sorbo said he doesn't understand why atheists are so "filled with just hatred and anger," saying that he feels sorry for them but also can't help but laugh at them for spending "so much time ranting and raving about something that they don't believe in."

Wiles agreed, saying that he doesn't "believe in the Tooth Fairy but I don't spend all my time from trying to stop people from believing in the Tooth Fairy."

Of course, one could just as well make the same point in response to Sorbo and Wiles, noting that while they don't believe in atheism, they sure do seem to be spending a lot of time ranting and raving about it.

In the end, both Wiles and Sorbo agreed that the real reason atheists are so angry is because, deep down, they know that God exists.

"The truth is," Wiles said, "they know he exists and they hate him. That's what it's all about."

"That is exactly what it is," Sorbo responded. "I know these guys must believe in something, otherwise they wouldn't get so angry about it and they don't like the fact that there is a higher power out there that is judging how they live their life":

Fischer: Valerie Jarrett Ordered Bin Laden Raid Without Even Consulting President Obama

On his radio broadcast yesterday, Bryan Fischer eagerly helped spread the emerging right-wing narrative that murdered journalist James Foley could have easily been rescued but President Obama was too busy playing golf to approve the rescue mission in time to save him.

But in Fischer's telling, the tale grew even more bizarre when he then asserted that it was really White House advisor Valerie Jarrett who ordered the raid that killed Osama bin Laden and did so without even telling President Obama.

"The best information we have," Fischer stated, "is that Valerie Jarrett pulled the trigger and told the Seal Team Six 'you got to go in and get him.' It was Valerie Jarrett that said 'look, we have an opportunity here, we can't afford to pass up this opportunity. I'm not even going to consult with Barack Obama. I'm not even going to consult with the president on this one, he's out playing golf, I'm just going to give the go signal' ... So Valerie Jarrett was functioning as the de facto Commander in Chief":

While this bizarre theory plays into Fischer's long-held belief that President Obama was so uninvolved in the Bin Laden raid that he had to be Photoshopped into the iconic photo of the situation room, it rather conflicts with the other right-wing conspiracy theory that it was Jarrett who repeatedly thwarted attempts to capture or kill Bin Laden.

That claim is not true either, but Fischer ought to at least try a little harder to get his conspiracy theories straight.

Klingenschmitt 'Apologizes' For Accusing Rep. Jared Polis Of Wanting To Join ISIS & Behead Christians

Over the weekend, Gordon Klingenschmitt, the demon-obsessed anti-gay exorcist who is the GOP nominee for a seat in the Colorado legislature, sent out an email from his Pray In Jesus Name organization in which he declared that gay Democratic congressman Jared Polis would soon be aligning himself with ISIS and begin beheading Christians here in America:

“The openly homosexual Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) introduced a revised bill to force Christian employers and business owners to hire and promote homosexuals with ZERO RELIGIOUS EXEMPTIONS for Christians who want to opt out.

“Polis ‘wants sexual orientation and gender identity treated the same way as race, religion, sex, and national origin, when it comes to employment protections,’ claims the Advocate, under the headline “Polis trims ENDA’s religious exemption.

“Dr. Chaps’ comment: The open persecution of Christians is underway. Democrats like Polis want to bankrupt Christians who refuse to worship and endorse his sodomy. Next he’ll join ISIS in beheading Christians, but not just in Syria, right here in America.”

Needless to say, that comment did not sit well with Democratic or Republican leaders in Colorado who quickly denounced Klingenschmitt:

The accusation prompted Mark Ferrandino, Speaker of the Colorado House, to condemn the remarks and demand that Colorado Republicans do the same.

“I call on Ryan Call and other Republicans to denounce Mr. Klingenschmitt and his homophobic, extreme, and slanderous attacks against Congressman Polis,” said Ferrandino in a statement.

GOP officials in Colorado have disowned Klingenschmitt before and this time was no different.

“As Chairman Call has said in the past, Gordon does not speak on behalf of the Republican Party, and his comments in no way reflect the views of the Party. Gordon needs to give a sincere apology,” said Owen Loftus, a Colorado GOP spokesman, in a statement.

In response, Klingenschmitt filmed a video in which he half-heartedly apologized, saying that he was merely using hyperbole and "some Democrats do not have a sense of humor," before dumping a bucket of water on his head as he challenged Polis, as well as Ferrandino and Call, to take the ALS #IceBucketChallenge:

David Barton: Obama, Kerry Won't Fight Terrorism Because Of Their Support For Abortion Rights

On today's "WallBuilders Live" radio program, David Barton and Rick Green invited Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert on on to discuss America’s role in the Mideast. Barton declared that "terrorism was really on the ropes" before President Obama removed the last U.S. troops from Iraq, but now "terrorism has really rebuilt itself ... [because] this has been an administration that has not done a good job of trying to take terrorists down or take terrorism out."

Barton and co-host Green repeatedly expressed their desire to have someone like Gohmert serving as president instead of President Obama because, they said, Gohmert understands the difference between good and evil, which Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry, and the rest of the administration can never grasp because they support abortion rights and gay marriage.

"I don't know why that Louie [Gohmert] would think that John Kerry has any moral equivalency given the position that John Kerry holds on marriage, on homosexuality, on abortion, on religious conscience, on religious expressions," Barton said. "I mean, since he opposes everything that's traditionally moral, why would there be a question of whether he's moral" when it comes to terrorism?

While Barton said that he was being a little facetious, Green replied that he was absolutely correct because "if [Kerry is] so wrong on all these other clear moral issues, how can we expect him to figure this one out."

"If you're wrong on an issue as simple as innocent life, then you have real trouble with guilty life as well," Barton explained. "When you take an unborn child this is innocent life and he doesn't think that that's right and wrong to take the life of an innocent unborn child, then when you see something like Hamas, which is guilty people who are murderers being taken out, he thinks that that's abominable."

"His whole value system is skewed," Barton concluded, "and that's the way so much of this administration has been," which is why it has been wrong on everything from economic policy, social policy, and foreign policy.

"You just can't be a world leader if you don't believe that certain things are right and certain things are wrong":

Gary Cass: 'Every Mosque In America ... Is An Armory Of Hell'

Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission was a guest on the right-wing Christian radio program "On The Way With Paul Ridgeway" earlier this month where he made his case that the Islamic radicals in ISIS are the true face of Islam and warned that every mosque in America is "an armory of Hell."

Saying that "we have fourteen hundred years of history to know what Islam is like and what Islam does," Cass called for military intervention against ISIS to be carried out "with ferocity, because that's the only thing that the Muslim mind will respect."

"But the truth is," he continued, "every mosque in America, I say—and this is harsh words but I think I can back it up—is an armory of Hell."

Ridgeway agreed, as he and Cass later asserted that Muslims around the world have remained silent in the face of atrocities being carried out by ISIS because "they secretly agree with it and they want it."

"I think the truth is," Cass said, "that if you went to these mosques and you were able to get them to speak honestly, they would be delighted with what's going on, that Christians are being killed":

Voter Registration in Ferguson Inspires Rather Than Disgusts

This post was originally published at the Huffington Post. 

On August 9, I don't believe 18-year-old Michael Brown, Jr. woke up in the morning thinking he would not see the evening sun, his family or friends, the end of the day that started with hope and promise. That morning, I don't believe Officer Darren Wilson left for work knowing his tragic encounter with an unarmed young African American male, who he would shoot and kill, would be the spark that ignited the flame that has been slowly burning in the city of Ferguson - the need for change.

In the wake of the fatal police shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown, Jr. in Ferguson, Missouri, community members and civil rights activists are proactively turning pain into power by praying, marching, meeting and yes, registering people to vote -- a move that the leader of the Missouri Republican Party, Matt Wills, said this week was "not only disgusting but completely inappropriate."

What is disgusting is that type of commentary and thinking! What is disgusting is for anyone to say, as Wills did, that "injecting race into this conversation and into this tragedy, not only is not helpful, but it doesn't help a continued conversation of justice and peace."

Is that leader aware or in denial of the Missouri Attorney General's 2013 report on racial profiling which shows that out of 5,384 Ferguson Police Department stops, 4,632 were of African Americans? That's disgusting and "completely inappropriate."

Is he aware or in denial that of the 521 arrests made during the report period, 483 were of African Americans? That out of 2,489 stops for moving violations, 1,983 were of African Americans? Shame on that leader and those who are "disgusted" by the simple act of voter registration drives to bring "light into darkness"!

In the shadow of Michael's death and the ensuing protests, I cannot imagine a more profound, inspiring response than voter registration. Justice and peace are close companions of democracy. Conducting voter registration drives at any time -- but especially at this time in a "sick and tired of being sick and tired" city that had just 12 percent turnout in this year's municipal election, 11.7 percent turnout in 2013, and 8.9 percent in 2012 -- is a critical way to address this as both a personal tragedy and a systemic tragedy.

It is not "disgusting" but deserving of those who live in a place that lacks diversity in local government, from the city council to the school board to the police department.

With deep condolences to the parents of Michal Brown, Jr. -- not wanting to "politicize" his death or exploit a grieving family who is calling for justice for the one who left out on Saturday morning and will never return -- what better way to honor them than by sowing the seeds of long-term, much needed change? Even from where I am in Washington, DC, I feel the urgency of the call for change in the homes, neighborhoods, businesses, and community of Ferguson.

The world has watched the dehumanization of a mother's child, police with military-grade gear tear-gassing protesters, journalists arrested and assaulted, and the response of helplessness and frustration that many community members must feel toward elected officials from City Hall to the halls of Congress. As Simon Maloy from Salon put it, "a week's worth of unrestrained police crackdowns...with the blessing or tacit approval of political leaders...will tend to erode whatever trust one has left in the people in charge."

So those of us who are watching should applaud, not complain about or attack, a community that turns a lack of trust in its elected officials into a movement for change.

We should applaud and not attack an inspiring vision for a different future for the rest of Michael's siblings, family and friends -- one in which the local officials are responsive to the needs of the entire community, and better reflect the community's diversity. Be "disgusted" by the city's racial profiling data. Be "disgusted" by the predicament of "driving while Black." Be "disgusted" by efforts to suppress voter participation, in Ferguson and around the country as some have "dusted off Jim Crow tactics" trying to stand in the way of men and women, youth and elder, unemployed and employed, determined to exercise their most fundamental right as citizens.

As the leader of a national alliance of African American faith leaders, I work every day with people who are often part of the first responders to tragedies like this, who walk with the family, who eulogize the deceased and who also organize, connect, and empower. They know the face of systemic injustices and of elected leaders who want to make it harder, rather than easier, for certain communities to participate in our democracy. To make the leap from pain to a promise of peace is a difficult step, but thank goodness for those who are taking it.

As one St. Louis faith leader said, pointing at a voter registration tent set up on a Ferguson street by a local woman and her daughter: "That's where change is gonna happen."

Believe is my favorite word. I truly believe "a change is gonna come." After the protests end, after the national cameras leave, after the marchers from east to west return to their homes, neighbors, and communities, there will be follow-up, there will be change.

Registering, educating and getting out the vote is not "disgusting" or "completely inappropriate." What is "disgusting" and "completely inappropriate" is not responding effectively, productively, and positively to suppression and oppression.

As I read about the homegoing (funeral) service planned for next week, I pause and pray for the family and people of Ferguson. What next comes to mind for Michael Brown, Jr. and for change in Ferguson, is: be inspired -- register and vote! For Michael's parents, Lesley McSpadden and Michael Brown, Sr. and for change in Ferguson: be inspired -- register and vote! For all those who loved "Big Mike," and all the other unnamed youth who have died to "justifiable" or "legal interventions" by law officers and know that Ferguson deserves change: be inspired -- register and vote for justice and for the fulfilled promise of peace!

PFAW Foundation

Dinesh D'Souza Explains The 'Common Thread Between ISIS And What's Going On In Ferguson'

Dinesh D'Souza was a guest on Steve Malzberg's program on Newsmax yesterday, where he inexplicably linked the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri to the murderous rampage being carried out by ISIS in Iraq.

D’Souza accused President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder and Al Sharpton of undermining the justice system by "fostering an atmosphere in Ferguson that basically goes 'let's declare that this guy is probably guilty and let's see what we can do to put him up against the wall.' The idea that he would get impartial justice is becoming highly questionable."

Declaring that, historically, it was black people who were denied equal justice under the law, D'Souza said that now we are seeing "a complete flip" so that now white people cannot get justice under President Obama and America is just "going from one set of injustices to another."

That somehow led D'Souza to claim that there is "a common thread between ISIS and what's going on in Ferguson" because, in both situations, people are seeking to correct a perceived injustice by inflicting a whole host of new injustices "and all of this is then licensed by the Left and licensed, to some degree, by the media":

The Victims of the Religious Right

This post was originally published at the Huffington Post. 

Yesterday's marriage equality ruling from a federal district court in Florida, like so many before it, strikes down laws preventing same-sex couples from marrying. And like all the ones before it, this ruling isn't a theoretical treatise on the law, but a legal opinion affecting real people.

All of the people suing to vindicate the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution have a story to tell. All of them are important. The judge briefly describes them, such as this lesbian couple:

Arlene Goldberg married Carol Goldwasser in New York in 2011. Ms. Goldwasser died in March 2014. The couple had been together for 47 years. Ms. Goldwasser was the toll-facilities director for Lee County, Florida, for 17 years. Ms. Goldberg is retired but works part time at a major retailer. The couple had been living with and taking care of Ms. Goldwasser's elderly parents, but now Ms. Goldberg cares for them alone. Social-security benefits are Ms. Goldberg's primary income. Florida's refusal to recognize the marriage has precluded Ms. Goldberg from obtaining social-security survivor benefits. Ms. Goldberg says that for that reason only, she will have to sell her house, and Ms. Goldwasser's parents are looking for another place to live.

Think about it: If the grieving Arlene Goldberg loses her house just because she couldn't get married, that is what victory for the Religious Right looks like.

Recall that the Religious Right has not only spent the past thirty or forty years fighting to prevent gays and lesbians from marrying. They have also fought tooth and nail against every advance in civil rights that has come during that time, affecting employment discrimination, child custody, healthcare decisionmaking ... you name it. Victory for them has meant forcibly separating parents from their children, firing gay teachers, making grieving mourners lose their homes, and much, much more.

Fortunately, most Americans don't side with the Religious Right. More and more Americans are recognizing that whatever negative assumptions they may have once had about lesbians and gays were simply not true. And they're realizing that discriminatory policies cause real harm to real people and should be changed. Most Americans don't like the idea of gratuitously hurting completely innocent people.

As for the Religious Right, hurting innocent people isn't just an infrequent or accidental byproduct of the movement's policies. They have been dedicated for decades to denying LGBT people as many legal rights as possible. The harms caused by the absence of those rights is what victory looks like for them.

PFAW Foundation

Liberty Counsel: Acceptance Of Gay Christians May Be A Sign Of The End Times

On Liberty Counsel's "Faith and Freedom" radio broadcast today, Matt Barber and Deryl Edwards discussed the increasing support for gay rights among Christians and the rise in the number of Christians who are coming out as gay, like Christian singer Vicky Beeching.

To Barber and Edwards, this sort of "great falling away from the clear words of Scripture" just might be a sign that the End Times are rapidly approaching.

"This looks to be," Barber said, "at least to me, that it may be the beginning of this great falling away" that was prophesied in the Bible. Edwards agreed, saying that this is exactly what Paul warned would happen as the End Times grow near.

Citing 1 Timothy 4:1, which warns that "in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons," Edwards said that this seems to be what is happening today.

"Are we in the Last Days?" he asked. "It sure seems like it."

Barber then announced that Christians must pray for Beeching in hopes that she will repent because "she's really in danger here of leading millions of Christ's little ones astray and as Scripture says, it's better to have a millstone around your neck [and to be drowned in the depths of the sea] than to do so":

BREAKING: Florida Marriage Ban Struck Down

Finally, some good news: today a federal judge in Florida struck down the state’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples.

U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle, nominated by President Clinton in the 1990s, ruled the 2008 ban unconstitutional on equal protection and due process grounds and predicted that future generations will look back with shock at the views of those who supported the ban:

'When observers look back 50 years from now, the arguments supporting Florida’s ban on same-sex marriage, though just as sincerely held, will again seem an obvious pretext for discrimination,' Hinkle wrote. 'Observers who are not now of age will wonder just how those views could have been held.'

While the decision has been stayed — meaning that couples cannot immediately begin getting married — it is a significant step forward for equality. Congratulations, Florida!

PFAW Foundation

Joyner: A Global Pandemic Is Coming, So Stock Up On Water Filters That Will Make You Immune To Cancer

On today's "Prophetic Perspective on Current Events" broadcast, Rick Joyner warned his viewers that the rise of some sort of global pandemic (maybe Ebola or possibly bird flu) in the near future was inevitable and so they should be stockpiling food, water, and supplies so that, when it comes, they will not have to stand in line waiting for assistance and can instead use the crisis as an opportunity to spread the Gospel to those who will need supplies.

In particular, Joyner recommended that people stock up on water filters  - which they can buy through his website, of course - especially ones that can help users reduce the pH level in their bodies, which he says will make them immune to cancer.

"You know what that means?" he asked. "When your pH level get down to a certain level, cancer won't grow. You don't even have to worry about it. Yep, that is true":

That is, of course, not true, as the American Institute for Cancer Research explained back in 2008:

The unsubstantiated theory is based on lab studies that suggest cancer cells thrive in an acidic (low pH) environment, but cannot survive in alkaline (high pH) surroundings. While these findings are accurate, they apply only to cells in an isolated lab setting. Altering the cell environment of the human body to create a less-acidic, less-cancer-friendly environment is virtually impossible.

The most amazing thing about Joyner's statement is that, in addition to being false, it is also exactly backwards since lowering the pH level makes things more acidic. Since the theory purports that cancer thrives in acidic environments, using water filters that lower pH level would theoretically make people more susceptible to cancer rather than, as Joyner claims, making them immune to it.

Sen. Ted Cruz To Join Anti-Gay Activists In Honoring His Father

Next month, Rick Scarborough's Vision America will host its annual "Heroes of Faith Gala" where the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins will receive the 2014 "National Hero of Faith Award" and Rafael Cruz, a Religious Right activist and father of Sen. Ted Cruz, will be honored with the "Don Wildmon Award," named for the founder of the American Family Association.

Today, Vision America sent out an email urging activists to register for the event, revealing that the senator is also going to be in attendance, picking up the Don Wildmon Award on behalf of his father and delivering remarks:

As we have noted before, Ted Cruz has great admiration for Scarborough despite Scarborough's long history of rabidly anti-gay bigotry.

In recent years, Scarborough has defended Russia's anti-gay laws, claimed there should be no such thing as Gay Pride Month because "those who engage in unnatural acts should hang their heads in shame," insisted that gay people should always be referred to as "sodomites," and called for a class action lawsuit to be filed against homosexuality.

Just last month, Scarborough said that God would be entirely justified for destroying America with a nuclear bomb because of the nation's tolerance and embrace of gay rights:

Back in 2011, he declared that AIDS is God's judgment upon those who engage in immoral acts:

And on September 4, Sen. Ted Cruz will be joining Scarborough for a gala honoring his father.

Fischer: End Muslim Immigration Because 'Islam Is Like The Ebola Virus'

In response to a video released yesterday showing Islamist extremists killing and beheading American journalist James Foley, Bryan Fischer used his radio program today to renew his call to ban all Muslim immigration to America by likening the faith to the Ebola virus.

"Islam is like the Ebola virus," Fischer said. "It's deadly. It's lethal. And all you can do with a virus like that, there's no cure for it, it can only be contained, it has to be stopped. And the way you do it is through quarantine."

Just as nations currently will not accept immigrants from places where the Ebola virus is spreading, so too should America ban Muslim immigrants, Fischer declared.

"They don't know which the citizens of that African country have the Ebola virus and which don't," he explained, "and so they say 'look, we just have to be careful, we have to protect our own people, we've got to protect the health of our own people, we cannot let anybody from your country into our country because we cannot take the chance that one of you may be a carrier of the virus.'"

The same goes for Muslims, Fischer said. "It's the people that are carriers that we have to worry about and we can't tell who has it and who doesn't, therefore we got to keep you all out of our country":

Mat Staver & Samuel Rodriguez Film Ads Promoting GOPFaith.com

Last week we noted that David Barton had begun promoting GOPFaith.com, a new effort from the Republican National Committee to mobilize a hundred thousand Religious Right activists on behalf of GOP candidates that is being headed by South Carolina GOP chairman Chad Connelly.

South Carolina GOP chairman Chad Connelly

Now it looks like Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver and The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference's Samuel Rodriguez have also climbed on board, as both have now filmed videos promoting the effort as well.

In his video, Staver says that he is "excited about this outreach from the RNC to wake up this sleeping giant because our Judeo-Christian values of liberty and life, they're all at stake" if conservative Christians do not get involved in politics:

For his part, Rodriguez, who inexplicably still manages to maintain a reputation as a moderate, nonpartisan Christian activist, declares that he is "so excited that the Republican National Committee has launched a very powerful and vibrant outreach component. I commend and applaud the leadership of Chad Connelly and really believe that the best days are yet to come":

Every Natural Disaster Since 1991 Has Been God's Punishment On America For Cursing Israel

On his "Pray In Jesus Name" program yesterday, Gordon Klingenschmitt interviewed John McTernan of USA Prophecy about his book "As America Has Done To Israel" in which he "reveals the direct correlation between America interfering with God's prophetic plan for Israel and incredible disasters hitting America."

As McTernan explained to Klingenschmitt, just about every major natural disaster that has struck the United States since 1991 has been as a result of America trying to force Israel to give up land for peace. McTernan said that President George H.W Bush's vacation home in Maine was damaged when the US co-sponsored the Madrid Peace Conference as a sign from God and, since then, America has been hit by massive natural disasters every time this nation has tried to "pressure Israel to divide the land."

"That includes the North Ridge Earthquake," McTernan said, "It includes Hurricane Andrew, Hurricane Katrina, it includes the tremendous tornado outbreak in Joplin, Missouri and many, many, many other of these massive disasters and there is an Israeli component at the very time of the disasters."

Klingenschmitt agreed, saying these disasters are to be interpreted as "the wrath of God against America when we choose to violate Scripture" by having "cursed" Israel:

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