Despite the fact that authorities are saying that race did not play a role in the shooting death of Christopher Lane or the beating that killed World War II vet Delbert Belton, commentators on the right are absolutely convinced that it did.
As such, "AFA Today" broadcast host Kevin McCullough blasted President Obama on Friday for failing to speak out about either crime, which apparently proves that Obama is racist and a "flaming hypocrite":
Please Mr. Obama, explain to me your silence, explain to me your deafness to the cries of people that genuinely hurt.
What's that? All we have is crickets?
Oh, because you're a flaming hypocrite. I get it. Okay. As long as we understand the game as it's being played. As long as we understand that it's okay for you to be a racist in the White House while accusing everyone else to be a racist. As long as we understand that that's the way it works; now we know. Now we've been made fully aware and now we can operate in a world where truth exists because we now see for ourselves that you're nothing but a flaming, hypocritical opportunist that seeks to prop up your own advantage via created outrage and anger when it doesn't exist and totally willing to be a total flaming hypocrite when it does exist on the other hand.
The fact that you're a two-bit circus squaller [sic] about this and that you're out there and your willing to chase that ambulance when you think there's a buck in it for you and you're not willing to take a stand, take a morally righteous stand to defend people that are shot down or beaten to death flashlights simply because they happen to be race that is different than the people attacked them.
Mr. President, I'm grateful; you're helping me today, Mr. President, you're helping me understand that racism comes in all forms and colors and that you yourself exhibit it as much as anybody else does, especially those that you've accused of it in the past.
This weekend People For the American Way Foundation turned out en masse for the 50th Anniversary March on Washington.
Some could remember the original march well. Some had driven across the country to be there on Saturday.
Our reasons for being there were as diverse as the range of topics covered by the speakers. Some wanted to see an end to Stand Your Ground laws; others spoke in support of immigration reform, LGBT equality, or voting rights.
But everyone stood in solidarity with those who marched half a century ago, while calling attention to the ongoing need to fight for social, economic, and racial justice. Everyone raised their voices in support of justice for all.
We saw Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) – just 23 years old when he spoke at the original March on Washington – take the podium again, speaking passionately about the need to protect the right to vote. He called it “precious…almost sacred.” Lewis recalled:
I gave a little blood on that bridge in Selma, Alabama for the right to vote.…I am not going to stand by and let the Supreme Court take the right to vote away from us.
Members of the PFAW Foundation family also took the podium. Young People For (YP4) alum Sophia Campos spoke in personal terms about the need for change in immigration policies, saying:
I grew up in this country undocumented. My family is immigrant… A million people have been deported in the last five years….It’s our black and brown bodies in these cells that are being detained.
Another YP4 alum, Dream Defenders leader Phil Agnew, also spoke at the rally, calling on young people to take the lead in the progressive movement. Young people, he said, are “here today to join in a conversation that will shake the very foundations of this capital.”
And Rev. Charles Williams, an active member of PFAW Foundation’s African American Ministers Leadership Council, was named by the event organizers as being part of the next generation of leaders.
We came to honor those who marched 50 years ago, but also to call attention to the critical justice issues facing our country today. As PFAW Foundation President Michael Keegan wrote last week:
That’s what this week is about: making sure that we, as a country, continue to strive to fulfill the promise of justice for all -- the American Way.
As we noted several months ago, Glenn Beck has transformed his The Blaze network into a public policy organization dedicated to fighting the implementation of Common Core because he is convinced that it is going to lead to a 1984-like learning environment where students are strapped to computers and monitored at all times.
Leading this effort has been none other than David Barton, who, after hosting another gathering of anti-Common Core actvists and state legislators at Beck's headquarters, sat in for Beck on his television program on Friday for a hour-long program dedicated to Common Core and who, during his opening monologue, played this misleadingly edited video of an educator supposedly saying that, under Common Core, it doesn't matter if students think that 3 x 4 = 11 so long as they can explain how they arrived at that answer (skip ahead to 7:30 mark):
Following the clip, Barton said it showed that education under Common Core is not about "getting right answers," which is fundamentally false, and Barton knows it.
As we pointed out earlier this month, this video has been misleadingly edited, since the speaker is cut off after supposedly saying that getting the wrong answer is not important when the full video shows that she then goes on to say that any student who answered that 3 x 4 = 11 would be wrong and would be corrected.
In fact, Beck's own The Blaze network debunked the very clip that Barton played on the program last Monday:
The truncated clip features August’s statement: “But even under the new Common Core if even if they said 3 x 4 was 11, if they were able to explain their reasoning and explain how they came up with their answer, really in words and oral explanations and they showed it in a picture but they just got the final number wrong? We’re more focusing on the how and the why.”
An audience member then asks whether students will be corrected for giving the wrong answer.
“Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. We want our students to compute correctly. But the emphasis is really moving more towards the explanation, and the how, and the why, and can I really talk through the procedures that I went through to get this answer — and not just knowing that it’s 12, but why is it 12? How do I know that?” August replies.
A fuller video of the forum, however, reveals that August said first students should certainly know that 3 x 4 equals 12.
This is now the third time that we have found something debunked by The Blaze being repeated on Beck's shows as statement of fact.
Maybe the people at The Blaze who help put together Beck's programming ought to start reading their own reporting.
As we have noted before, one of the great ironies of Glenn Beck's The Blaze network is that it operates under the slogan "Truth Lives Here" when Beck himself is one of the most recklessly dishonest media voices in operation today.
And nothing better demonstrates this fact than his current obsession with the story, broken by the SPLC, of Ayo Kimathi, a Department of Homeland Security employee who runs a racist, anti-gay black nationalist website on the side where he openly proclaims that "we are going to have to kill a lot of whites."
That story is outrageous enough on its own, but for Beck it is just further proof of his theory that the Obama administration is seeking to foment a race war, and he is now tying this story to the on-going right-wing conspiracy claiming that the government is stockpiling weapons and ammunition for use against American citizens.
Despite the fact that both the original SPLC piece and Beck's own article report that "Kimathi is a small business specialist" with DHS, on his radio show today Beck baselessly proclaimed that Kimathi "was in charge of buying all of the bullets for the Department of Homeland Security."
"So the shortage of bullets that we have," Beck stated, "may very well be caused by this guy. The reason you don't have bullets is because this guy ... is in charge of all of the procurement of the bullets and the weapons for the Department of Homeland Security."
Kimathi's actual job, contrary to Beck's false claim, is as a "Small Business Specialist, who serves as a point of contact for private firms seeking agency-specific acquisition information" ... but Beck doesn't care about the truth at all, and instead is using this as further evidence that "our administration is in bed with very bad people":
Just keep this in mind the next time Beck starts to wonder why everyone calls him a crazed conspiracy theorist.
Recently The New York Times reminded us that Representative John Lewis is still marching on Washington, 50 years later.
On August 28, 1963, as the 23-year-old chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), Lewis took the podium on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
Tomorrow, as the 73-year-old representative from Georgia's 5th congressional district, he will commemorate the 50th anniversary of those remarks.
Representative Lewis returns to the podium as the sole surviving speaker from the March on Washington.
Here at YP4 we know that “justice for all” is an expansive idea that includes pushing for and protecting civil rights, women’s rights, LGBT equality and more. It means rededicating ourselves to the promise of vibrant, safe, democratic communities. It means fighting for a country where our voices are not drowned out by massive corporate spending to influence our elections. It means standing up to groups like ALEC which push extreme laws threatening the wellbeing of our communities, such as the “Stand Your Ground” laws that YP4 alumni like [Phillip] Agnew – leader of the Dream Defenders in Florida – have been fighting to change.
In other words, we know that “justice for all” is a promise that has yet to be realized.
Join us tomorrow as Representative Lewis and others once again bring the struggle for jobs, justice, and freedom back to the nation's capital. Check out MLKDREAM50 for information on the full week of events.
Washington, D.C. is gearing up for events commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington and Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech. I will be among thousands of Americans gathering on the national mall this weekend to remember those marchers and to rededicate ourselves to their demand that the country make good on its promises of equality and opportunity for all.
The fact that politicians from across the political spectrum want to associate themselves with King is a big change. Fifty years ago, he was reviled as a Communist sympathizer trying to undermine what some said was God's design that the races live separately. March organizer Bayard Rustin was denounced by segregationist Strom Thurmond on the floor of the Senate for being a communist, draft-dodger, and homosexual. This year, Rustin will be posthumously awarded with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
So it is a reflection of social progress that so many conservative Republican lawmakers and right-wing leaders try to wrap themselves in the moral authority of the civil rights movement. But it's also a reflection of cynical political posturing.
Right-wing leaders are fond of rhetorically embracing King's dream for an America in which children "will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." Unfortunately, they often use the quote to justify their opposition to any policies that are designed to address the ongoing effects of racial discrimination.
Right-wing politicians shouldn't be allowed to get away with pretending to share King's moral high ground simply because legally mandated segregation is now unthinkable in America. There was so much more to King's - and the movement's - vision.
King was an advocate for government intervention in the economy to address poverty and economic inequality. He was a supporter of Planned Parenthood and women's right to choose.
He endorsed the 1960s Supreme Court decisions on church-state separation that Religious Right leaders denounce as attacks on faith and freedom. One of his most valued advisors, Bayard Rustin, was an openly gay man at a time when it was far more personally and politically dangerous to be so.
How many Republican leaders today will embrace that Martin Luther King?
It is true that a strong majority of congressional Republicans voted for the 1964 Civil Rights Act and 1965 Voting Rights Act. It is true that many of our civil rights advances were made with bipartisan support. But today many Republican leaders at the state level are pushing unfair voting laws that could keep millions of people away from the polls. And many not only cheered the Supreme Court's recent decision gutting the Voting Rights Act but moved immediately to put new voting restrictions in place.
Today's Republican leaders are also captive to the anti-government ideology fomented by the Tea Party and its right-wing backers. Let's remember that the official name of the event we are commemorating is the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Among the marchers' demands were a higher minimum wage and a "massive federal program" to provide unemployed people with decent paying jobs. Sounds like socialism!
Today's right-wing leaders say it's wrong to even pay attention to economic inequality. To Rick Santorum, just using the term "middle class" is Marxist.
We must not allow this historic anniversary to become a moment that perpetuates an ersatz, sanitized, co-opted version of King and the movement he led. Let's instead reclaim King's broadly progressive vision - for ourselves and for the history books.
Earlier this month, a recording was leaked in which San Antonio Councilwoman Elisa Chan could be heard railing against a proposed anti-discrimination ordinance and gays in general. There has understandably been an outcry over her comments, such as her statement that homosexuals are "disgusting," but Chan is refusing to apologize ... and, for that, she is being praised by Bryan Fischer.
Fischer said on his radio program yesterday that Chan has nothing for which she needs to apologize because everything she said are "things that anybody who is thinking rightly and clearly about homosexuality would believe."
"I would guarantee you," Fischer said, "90% of the American people, if they would stop and think about what actually happens in homosexual sexual behavior, they would find it disgusting":
Guest post from Reverend Dr. Geraldine Pemberton, Assistant Pastor of New Hope Baptist Church in Philadelphia and member of PFAW Foundation’s African American Ministers Leadership Council.
As a 74 year old retired nurse, I can remember the original March on Washington well. I wasn’t able to be there in person that day, but many of my family members were. After marching with Dr. King and more than 200,000 other Americans, they were inspired to come home and fight for justice.
I myself am of the Jim Crow era. The injustices that Dr. King described that day as the “chains of discrimination” were injustices I faced first-hand. My father, who was born in North Carolina, would take my family down from Philadelphia for visits to his home state. He would try to prepare us as much as he could, but it was always overwhelming. I remember that once we passed the Mason-Dixon line, we couldn’t use most bathrooms. We would have to use outhouses behind gas stations instead.
Today I can see how far we’ve come, but also how much further we still have to go. I have spent much of my life fighting the injustices that drove the first March on Washington, especially health disparities facing women of color. Justice, I have learned, is a very big umbrella that must include equality for women. A just society has to be one that values women’s voices and fights back against health disparities that threaten black women’s lives.
Twenty years after that march, I went to another major event that inspired people from all over to drop what they were doing and travel across the country – the 1983 Spelman College conference on women’s health, which birthed what is now the Black Women’s Health Imperative. My friend and I saw a flyer for it but didn’t think we could afford to go. We maxed out our credit cards and drove down to Atlanta. Thousands of women showed up for the conference – young women, older women, women with children, women who had hitchhiked there. We just showed up - we had to be there.
That conference unfolded into a lifetime of work in pursuit of improving the health outcomes of African American women. As a former Director of Nursing and a current Health Committee Director for an alliance of Black clergy in Philadelphia, I know that women of color need improved access to care and greater provider sensitivity. Women need more information on the diseases that affect us most. And as a 74 year old Philadelphian, I’m still fighting for women’s health and justice. This year I am organizing health forums at churches throughout the city to give women more information about diseases, healthy living, and greater access to health services though the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act commonly known as “Obamacare.”
The first health forum is this weekend – fifty years after the March on Washington. In so many ways, we are still marching.
For the last several days, Glenn Beck and his The Blaze network have been heavily focused on the plight of Coptic Christians in Egypt, culminating in a segment on his radio program today in which Beck grew increasingly emotional as he declared that the Nazis have returned, just as he predicted.
"It is the Night of Broken Glass," Beck said, "the Nazis are here. They have finally walked through that door. When I was comparing people to Nazis in the Muslim Brotherhood and everybody said 'oh no, they're not Nazis,' well now you can see that they are!"
Beck went on to deliver a fire and brimstone warning to his audience that everyone will be held accountable by God for how they respond to this situation, saying that if this situation is not stopped, the Jews will become the next victims before eventually Christians all over the world will become targets.
"It is time to stand together," Beck proclaimed, before breaking down in tears and apologizing "for being this guy; I don't want to be this guy and I'm sorry to be this guy" as he repeatedly warned that "the hour grows late":
Shortly after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed legislation banning the use of "ex-gay" therapy on minors, the anti-gay activists at Liberty Counsel announced that they would be filing suit.
On today's "Faith and Freedom" broadcast, Mat Staver and Matt Barber discussed their forthcoming lawsuit and were particularly outraged that, in signing the legislation, Christie said that he doesn't believe that homosexuality is a sin.
Staver vehemently disagreed, stating that homosexuality "is a disordered situation; it is sin; t is wrong."
Barber was likewise outraged, blasting "the hubris behind him saying that he knows better than God, that he knows better than thousands of years of tradition, the Catholic Church, the Christian church, the Bible about homosexuality and the sin inherent in those behaviors":
Citing a campaign launched by Morality In Media to ensure that Tom Wheeler, President Obama's nominee to head the Federal Communications Commission, will enforce decency standards, "Dr. Chaps" Gordon Klingenschmitt said on his "Pray In Jesus Name" show that demonic spirits are using lax FCC enforcement of these standards to "molest and visually rape your children."
"Dr. Chaps" said that former FCC chairman Julius Genachowski failed to adequately enforce the decency standards during his time in office and that was because there was a "demonic spirit of tyranny or immorality inside of him."
And even though Genachowski outwardly appears very polished and successful, "the demonic spirit influences him to abuse and, dare I say, molest and visually rape your children":
As we have noted several times before, self-awareness is not one of Bryan Fischer's strong suits and his cluelessness was on full display once again this afternoon when he attempted to mock Rep. Carol Shea-Porter for saying that the corporate tax rate in America was "just a suggestion."
The point that Shea-Porter was making was entirely accurate, as she was simply acknowledging that the effective tax rate actually paid by corporations is far lower than the set federal rate. In essence, the tax rate is "just a suggestion" because corporations don't really pay that.
But Fischer played a clip of Shea-Porter making this true statement and then mocked her for it, saying "tell that to Martha Stewart, tell that to Bernie Madoff, tell that to who knows how many people are in prison for treating the tax code as if it were just a suggestion."
Of course, Stewart went to prison for insider trading and Madoff went to prison for running a massive Ponzi scheme ... so any connection between these examples and the issue of corporate tax rates exists only in Fischer's "twisted mind":
Outraged that employees in his organization had begun placing recycling bins throughout The Blaze's headquarters and studio and replaced individual water bottles with a water cooler, Glenn Beck brought the Vice President of Studio Operations onto his radio program today to explain why these changes were taking place.
When she claimed that doing so was saving the company money, Beck not only didn't buy it but also didn't really care and instead issued a new company-wide policy that any employee who buys a compact fluorescent light bulb when non-CFL options are available will be fired.
"Global warming is a pile of crap," Beck declared, adding that he would be issuing a memo informing everyone that "if anyone does anything in this company because of global warming, they're fired":
Matt Barber appeared on the "Today's Issues" broadcast this morning to discuss his most recent column about a bakery in Oregon which has had a complaint filed against it for refusing to provide a wedding cake to a same-sex couple.
In light of this and similar instances around the country, Barber declared that it has become obvious that gay marriage and religious liberty cannot coexist and so "in much the same fashion as did the civil rights activists of old - Martin Luther King and others - Christians are going to have a decision to make; it may be a time for civil disobedience."
"Christians have been persecuted for 2000 years by radical leftists," he said, adding that just as King spent time in jail, anti-gay Christians today might have to suffer the same fate, knowing that they will be rewarded by God for upholding his law and refusing to "pretend that somehow a man can marry a man, a woman can marry a woman."
"You guys can put on two tuxedos or two wedding dresses and play house and get pretend married 'til your heart's content," Barber said, "but marriage is what God says it is. We can no more change the laws of gravity than can we change the laws of marriage":
On his most recent "Pray In Jesus Name" program, "Dr. Chaps" Gordon Klingenschmitt dedicated an entire segment to investigating the question of whether pop star Madonna is possessed by demons.
Citing lyrics from her song "Revolver," which he judged against the "Warning Against the Adulterous Woman" from Proverbs 7, Klingenschmitt concluded that, in fact, Madonna is possessed by a demonic spirit of adultery.
Klingenschmitt then added that he has heard of people being cured of liver cancer after repenting for this sin of pornography, before politely declining Madonna's invitation to engage in intercourse because he has been happily married for 22 years:
On his radio broadcast today, Bryan Fischer took a call from a listener who warned that the American people will one day wake up to what is being done to them by the government and when that day comes, it will lead to revolution.
Fischer shared the caller's concerns, saying "I think we may be headed toward bloodshed in America."
"There are a number of avenues," Fischer stated, "starting right where we're at right now that could lead to bloodshed, could lead to anarchy, could lead to chaos in America."
After insisting that he does not want to see anything like that happen, Fischer warned that the fact that members of Congress are reluctant to hold town hall meetings during the August recess could lead to a revolution.
"If our elected officials will not listen to us, if they will not meet with us, if they will not respond to the urgent appeal of their own constituents, the people that elected them to office, then eventually you might get to the point [where] people will just get fed up and then you'll start having some very, very unpredictable things that will happen":
Birther king Joseph Farah of WND was a guest on the "Today's Issues" program this morning where he and AFA President Tim Wildmon discussed "Obama's war against Christians."
Wildmon admitted that Christians in America are not suffering the same sort of persecution as Christians in other nations around the world, but warned that if America continues to follow this path, that same sort of persecution will soon be happening here "if you continue to denigrate people and their beliefs and their Bible."
Wildmon blamed it all on secular progressives who are "progressing toward anarchy ... or communism" and who "hate the Judeo-Christian worldview; in essence, they won't tell you this necessarily, but they hate the god of the Bible " and seek to rebel against him: