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Buster Wilson's Latest Conspiracy Theory

Earlier this month the American Family Association’s Buster Wilson, who loves floating false conspiracy theories, warned that Obama was creating his own “version of the Brownshirts” through a security program known as the National Defense Executive Reserve and has existed for decades. The AFA posted a video of Wilson entitled, “Is DHS Plotting A Civil War,” and then turned around and removed the video from their YouTube channel; fortunately, we grabbed the video.

Today on his program, Wilson reacted to reports that the Department of Homeland Security is “seeking riot gear for the presidential conventions and inauguration.” The DHS works to provide security for National Special Security Events, which include “presidential inaugurations, presidential nominating conventions, major sports events, and major international meetings” that are deemed security targets. Wilson went on to conflate the NDER program and the DHS decision to, as usual, provide security for the presidential inauguration and major party conventions, and claim he was “proven right” while Right Wing Watch was very wrong.

Unfortunately for Wilson, providing security for events like inaugurations and the Super Bowl is not the same as reestablishing the Brownshirts.

The New York Times Sheds New Light on the Lisa Miller Kidnapping Case

New York Times reporter Erik Eckholm has a big front-page story in Sunday’s paper on a case that readers of RWW are familiar with: the disappearance of Lisa Miller. Eckholm traveled to Nicaragua to talk with the Mennonite communities that have helped harbor Miller and her daughter Isabella on their flight from United States law enforcement and from Isabella’s other legal parent, Miller’s former partner Janet Jenkins of Vermont. Miller, who kidnapped her daughter rather than allow her to have visitation rights with Jenkins, has become a cause celebre among the Religious Right, a supposed victim of anti-Christian persecution.

Eckholm supplies us with an illuminating and creepy anecdote about a family of hamsters left to die in Miller’s abandoned house, and casts some light on the thinking of those who helped harbor Miller in Nicaragua. But there’s one important piece of the puzzle that remains a mystery: did Miller’s attorneys at Liberty University have anything to do with Miller’s disappearance? LU Law School dean Mat Staver tells Eckholm that he was surprised as anyone when Miller disappeared, as he has since it first became known.

But Liberty University’s relationship with Miller has always been a little complicated. Rena Lindevaldsen, an LU Law School dean and Miller’s attorney before she disappeared, has now written a book arguing Miller’s case. And even before Miller kidnapped with Isabella, Lindevaldsen and Staver were teaching Miller’s case as an example of a situation where the demands of “God’s law” trump those of “man’s law.” Religion Dispatches’ Sarah Posner talked with several students who had taken a required class from the two deans and got her hands on a copy of an exam that quizzed students on what to do in Lisa Miller’s situation:

Students at Liberty Law School tell RD that in the required Foundations of Law class in the fall of 2008, taught by Miller’s attorneys Mat Staver and Rena Lindevaldsen, they were repeatedly instructed that when faced with a conflict between “God’s law” and “man’s law,” they should resolve that conflict through “civil disobedience.” One student said, “the idea was when you are confronted with a particular situation, for instance, if you have a court order against you that is in violation of what you see as God’s law, essentially... civil disobedience was the answer.

This student and two others, who all requested anonymity for fear of reprisal by Staver (who is also the law school’s dean), recounted the classroom discussion of civil disobedience, as well as efforts to draw comparisons between choosing “God’s law” over “man’s law” to the American revolution and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail. According to one student, in the Foundations course both Staver and Lindevaldsen “espoused the opinion that in situations where God’s law is in direct contradiction to man’s law, we have an obligation to disobey it.”
...
That semester’s mid-term exam, obtained by RD [see excerpts of the actual exam here], included a question based on Miller’s case asking students to describe what advice they would give her “as a friend who is a Christian lawyer.” After laying out a slanted history of the protracted legal battle, the exam asked, “Lisa needs your counsel on how to think through her legal situation and how to respond as a Christian to this difficult problem. Relying only on what we have learned thus far in class, how would you counsel Lisa?”

Students who wrote that Miller should comply with court orders received bad grades while those who wrote she should engage in civil disobedience received an A, the three students said. “People were appalled,” said one of the students, adding, “especially as lawyers to be, who are trained and licensed to practice the law—to disobey that law, that seemed completely counterintuitive to all of us.”

Still, some knew what they needed to “regurgitate,” in order to get a good grade. “It was obvious by the substance of the class during the semester the answer that they wanted,” said one of the students. “The majority of people that I am acquainted with who did get As wrote that because that was expected of them.”

One of the students who got an A said, “I told them she needed to engage in civil disobedience and seriously consider leaving the country,” adding, “I knew what I needed to write.”

Given what was expected of them on the exam, and the tenor of the class, there is “not a lot of shock among the students about the current developments,” said one of the students, referring to the revelation that Miller is in hiding in Nicaragua. “Everybody semi-suspected that Liberty Counsel had something to do with her disappearance.”


Of course, we have no way of knowing what Liberty Counsel knew and when they knew it. But Posner’s reporting shows that it’s certainly worth looking into.

Kevin Swanson Nostalgic for Time when Homosexuals faced Death Penalty, Wants 'Miss Piggy on a Bun' for Chick-fil-A Decision

Pastor and radio host Kevin Swanson of Generations with Vision earlier this month expressed nostalgia for the Pilgrims’ approach to homosexuality, when it was punishable by death. On his radio show last week, longed for a time when Christians “brought the death penalty upon homosexuality” and “for about 1,500 years that form of life had pretty much been eliminated except here and there.”

Later in the program, Swanson and his co-host Dave Buehner talked about the backlash over Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy’s anti-gay statements, including denouncements from public officials and a decision by the Muppets to sever ties with the restaurant chain. They wondered if the Muppets support NAMBLA and if Kermit is “interested in another frog” instead of Miss Piggy and suggested that Chick-fil-A have a “frog filet” or a “Miss Piggy on a bun” to memorialize the Muppets’ decision to “take the sodomy route.”

Swanson: A Christian perspective ultimately brought the death penalty upon homosexuality between roughly 350 AD and roughly 1850 or so, for about 1,500 years that form of life had pretty much been eliminated except here and there, it was in the closet, but it was almost unheard of for over 1,000 years, until recently. Of course, now you have a massive, massive increase in this kind of thing.



Swanson: I say this is a really bad idea for somebody to stand up against the laws of God. Realize that this is a brave venture, this has been about a 30 year plan, a 40 year plan maybe, to completely consume America with a pro-homosexual agenda, and I just don’t think it’s going to last, I think you are going to see Jesus Christ coming up against this kind of thing, as we have said already about the Joe Paterno case.

Buehner: It’s pretty obvious to anyone who’s on looking that tolerance only runs one direction, you only can tolerate gays, you can’t tolerate those who don’t support gays.

Swanson: And Kermit the Frog is not eating Chick-fil-A either.

Buehner: No, they’re pulling out. Chick-fil-A had an association with the Muppets, a Happy Meals kind of thing. But Kermit the Frog doesn’t want to be there anymore, turns out that Kermit is not that interested in Miss Piggy, maybe he’s interested in another frog.

Swanson: Maybe Dan Cathy should consider doing a frog filet for one of the sandwiches.

Buehner: A frog filet?

Swanson: A frog filet, by commemoration of Kermit the Frog pulling out of his support for Chick-fil-A. Dave, you know that Sesame Street and the Muppets are going to take the sodomy route. I don’t know, do they support NAMBLA? I’m not sure, we should ask, we should ask if the Muppets support NAMBLA.

Buehner: I don’t think the frog filet will sell, just a little marketing advice, I think Miss Piggy on a bun, that’s a better bet, the winner.

Swanson: Miss Piggy on a bun, that sounds good, a fried pig on a bun.

Buehner: Sausage, a little bacon.

Swanson: Piggy on a bun. Well folks, it’s good news we have some organizations like Chick-fil-A.

On Obstructing Judges, Senate Republicans Get Even Worse

Republicans are seeking the first ever successful filibuster of a circuit court nominee who was approved in committee with bipartisan support.
PFAW

Louisiana Voucher Program Will 'Release the Word of God' and Upset Satan

One of the major backers of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s expansive private school voucher program was Rev. Gene Mills of the Louisiana Family Forum, who also endorsed Jindal’s plan to exempt private schools receiving vouchers from participating “in the state testing and accountability program imposed on traditional and charter public schools.” Private schools receiving vouchers under the program, the vast majority of which are religious schools, are free from the requirement to have their students pass state exams to advance to the next grade level and won’t even receive state letter grades meant to evaluate student performance. Through the voucher program, Mills may finally get his wish of teaching creationism in schools as many of the voucher schools teach “bible-based math” and creationism in place of evolution, using the Loch Ness Monster as proof, all with taxpayer funding.

Mills is so close to the governor that he even prayed over Jindal at his organization’s Christmas Gala:

Just in case you need even more evidence that Louisiana’s voucher program was more about financing religious schools than improving student performance, Mills told David Barton and Rick Green today on WallBuilders Live that the program will increase student exposure to “religious material” and “release the Word of God” to children.

And who is rallying the opposition from the “teachers unions and the government bureaucrats”? Why, Satan of course. “There is no doubt it’s going to have its impact and it’s going to hit its target and it’s going to strike fast, and that’s why the Enemy is kicking back,” Mills said, “He realizes what’s going to happen when all of the sudden these kids come into a knowledge unlike their former secular humanist seminary, they are being rooted and grounded in foundational and fundamental, timeless principles that can change a person’s eternity.”

Mills: I think one of the undercurrents that you can’t see but it was one of the reasons that the Louisiana Family Forum weighed in so heavily, is that it has the effect—the further you get away from those options we talked about a moment ago, away from public school, away from the public charter school, away from the public virtual school, and into the private or parochial school—it has the effect of removing the federal court’s jurisdiction from decisions that are made in how that school operates and/or is governed.

For those of us who have a faith background, the idea that the truth can still set kids free, can you imagine what would happen if you uncapped religious clubs, religious speech, student body prayer, religious material, as is the case in most private or parochial schools.

Green: You hit the nail on the head with this because isn’t that the real underlying challenge in America right now? Because, we’ve had now several generations come through an education system void of values, where right and wrong aren’t taught, anything goes, everything is OK, you and up with a society like this. You get half these kids going through a school system where there is a set of values, where there is a right and wrong. It’s not just reading, writing and arithmetic they’re gonna do better, they’re gonna become better people.

Mills: That’s exactly right. I don’t even know if the governor, who is a person friend of mine and we’ve worked closely on this, fully comprehends how imperative or how essential that component is. When you remove the federal courts and you release the power of the word of God, there is no doubt it’s going to have its impact and it’s going to hit its target and it’s going to strike fast, and that’s why the Enemy is kicking back. He realizes what’s going to happen when all of the sudden these kids come into a knowledge unlike their former secular humanist seminary, they are being rooted and grounded in foundational and fundamental, timeless principles that can change a person’s eternity. They will be equipped, and they’ll be educated along the way too, but they’ll be filled with character capable of making insightful decisions towards the future.

I gotta tell you, that’s one of the reasons I believe that what the governor has called the ‘coalition of the status quo’ has raised so many points of opposition, they want to divert attention from their chronic failure throughout the years and they also want to divert attention from what has fundamentally taken place, in Louisiana we’re separating child and state and it’s resulted in traumatic stress amongst the teachers unions and the government bureaucrats but it’s a healthy thing.

LaBarbera and Lindevaldsen Say No to Gay Judges, Sad Sally Ride ‘Fell into Lesbianism’

Americans for Truth About Homosexuality’s Peter LaBarbera continued his discussion with Liberty University Law School’s Rena Lindevaldsen on Friday. The two revisited the topic of openly gay judges, specifically the Virginia prosecutor who was rejected from a judgeship simply because he was gay. That discrimination was ok, Lindevaldsen said, because “if you’re engaged in a lifestyle of immorality, whether that be a homosexual lifestyle or an adulterous relationship or fornication, that’s not the type of moral character that I believe should be someone who’s being appointed to become a judge”:

Lindevaldsen: I think we can equate this not only with the judiciary, but the same debate is taking place, you know, who we want to serve as our schoolteachers, for example. We want moral, upstanding individuals to serve as judges, and this debate’s taking place with schoolteachers too. So if you’re engaged in a lifestyle of immorality, whether that be a homosexual lifestyle or an adulterous relationship or fornication, that’s not the type of moral character that I believe should be someone who’s being appointed to become a judge.

I think it goes to fit moral character and I think that the necessary qualification of any judicial appointment. And therefore it is relevant, based on your conduct, to judge and decide whether you should be allowed to sit in the judiciary.

Immediately after Lindevaldsen and LaBarbera made the case that gay judicial nominees should be defined by and excluded for their sexual orientation, they changed the rules when it came to another prominent example of an openly gay person in public life. Lindevaldsen and LaBarbera heaped scorn on gay rights activists who have had the nerve to call the late Sally Ride, who lived for 27 years with her same-sex partner, a gay pioneer. Emphasizing Ride’s sexual orientation, LaBarbera said -- expanding on a tweet from shortly after her death --would be like defining her as an alcoholic if she had a drinking problem:

LaBarbera: They’re always using opportunities to promote what their version of reality on homosexuality. And really quickly, Sally Ride, another great example. Sally Ride was the first female astronaut, the first…and she had many amazing accomplishments. Unfortunately she also fell into lesbianism and left her husband, she was married, she ended up living in a lesbian lifestyle. She was not public about it. Now gay activists, like Michelangelo Signorile, are using her homosexual, you know, the fact that she practiced the homosexual lifestyle, to say, ‘Hey, this is another gay hero.”

Kirkwood: She was a female astronaut, now she’s the ‘lesbian astronaut.’

LaBarbera: Now she’s the lesbian astronaut, and you better believe in textbooks like in California where they’re teaching gay history now, there’s going to be Sally Ride. So people are going to learn Sally Ride as a, and we’re going a bit over here, they’re going to learn Sally Ride, Rena, as a gay hero, even though she wasn’t even public about it in her life.

Lindevaldsen: Yeah, because they need to contort our history to show that we’ve accepted this all along and that it’s perfectly normal, and see you too can do this and become great things. And you can, you can accomplish things, but that’s not who she was, that doesn’t define who she was and what she accomplished.

LaBarbera: And Rena, I tweeted, and I knew this was going to get me in trouble, but I tweeted, ‘Did she have a drinking problem too?’ In my tweet, I said that she made great accomplishments. But she should not be, and I didn’t, of course she doesn’t, I don’t know if she had a drinking problem or not, but my point was the fact that she practiced homosexuality would be about as relevant as saying, ‘Sally Ride, hey people who drink can be great.’ I mean it’s still immoral behavior, it’s very sad to me that she was involved in that lifestyle. The fact that she was in that lifestyle doesn’t take away from the great accomplishments that she had. But the point is gay identity politics now wants to seize her as a hero.

 

Jeffress Warns that Homosexuality Leads to Pedophilia

Pastor Robert Jeffress has been making the rounds to defend Chick-fil-A’s anti-gay advocacy with claims that gays lead a “miserable lifestyle” and telling his congregants to support “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day”:

"The liberals have gone into a frenzy," said Jeffress. "Their first response was to try to stop the expansion of businesses with which they disagree. That should be of great concern for every American," he added.

The pastor, who last year made headlines for saying Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is not a Christian and Mormonism is a cult, also urged his church members to support the Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day on Aug. 1.

"Let's go to Chick-fil-A this Wednesday to support religious freedom in America,'" said Jeffress. Supporters of traditional marriage and fans of Chick-fil-A are expected to head to their nearest chain restaurant on Aug. 1 to encourage Cathy.

His Pathway to Victory radio ministry also replayed one of his an anti-gay sermons on Friday, where he warned that homosexuals, since they are “perverse,” could begin to molest children since “if a person will sink that low” then “there is no telling to whatever sins he will commit as well.”

Jeffress: Amazingly, some gay activists don’t even try to hide the link between homosexuality and pedophilia. There are some who are right now are actively involved in trying to legalize sex between adults and children by lowering the age of consent or removing it altogether. In all fairness, it would be wrong to suggest that all homosexuals to pedophiles, it would be wrong to even suggest that a majority of homosexuals are pedophiles, but the truth nevertheless is there. There are a disproportionate amount of assaults against children by homosexuals than by heterosexuals, you can’t deny that, and the reason is very clear: homosexuality is perverse, it represents a degradation of a person’s mind and if a person will sink that low and there are no restraints from God’s law, then there is no telling to whatever sins he will commit as well.

Religious Right Leaders Pray for 'Healing for Those who Struggle with Same-Sex Attraction'

A number of prominent women leaders of the Religious Right have come together for the American Prayer Initiative, which is “designed to help draw ‘we the people’ of this nation back to the One upon whom she was founded.’ The group includes the National Day of Prayer’s Shirley Dobson and Vonette Bright, talk show host Janet Parshall, Liberty Counsel’s Anita Staver, Concerned Women for America’s Penny Nance, Susan B. Anthony List’s Marilyn Musgrave, activist Rebecca Hagelin and Susan Allen, wife of Virginia’s George Allen. The group offers members a specific prayer for every day of each month until Election Day, including prayers condemning homosexuality and the separation of church and state.

One message asks participants to pray for God’s “healing for those who struggle with same-sex attraction” and to “replace unnatural affections”:

We pray for healing and restoration of true manhood and womanhood in America. We ask for Your wisdom and protection against attempts to re-define our very identity as men and women.

We pray for Your design for abundant and fulfilled manhood, womanhood and marriage to gain preeminence in America.

We pray for a full restoration of the image and definition of manhood and womanhood in America.

We petition You, God for Your healing for those who struggle with same-sex attraction. May they come to know Your power, Your mercy and Your love as You replace unnatural affections with ones You Yourself designed.

Another is a prayer to oppose the legalization of same-sex marriage:

We pray that the union of one man and one woman will be embraced by all societies as the sole form of legitimate marriage and the proper basis of family.

We ask that the power of Your hand intervene to transform and heal the hearts of those who would attempt to re-define marriage.

The group also sends a message criticizing the influence of judges and proponents of the separation of church and state:

We ask for leaders, a judicial system and judges who adhere to the original intent of our founding documents and their many connections to Biblical principles.

We pray for a true understanding of justice according to Your Word We pray for Your protection from attempts to redefine justice for political gain.

We ask You to convict, transform and protect those who are out of Your will. We ask You to encourage, strengthen and protect those who honor and follow You.

We ask You for judges who will follow constitutional principles rather than ruling according to pre-chosen outcomes or relying on international law.

We pray that courts will recognize parents’ fundamental rights to the care, custody and control of their children.

We ask for Your guidance for accurate rulings over first amendment issues, and an awareness in our country that the words, “separation of church and state” are found nowhere in any one of our founding documents. We ask for a reversal of rulings which have inaccurately established “separation” as a Constitutional principle.

There is even a prayer against a media looking “to bring our country down by bringing our culture down”:

We ask you, Lord, to open greater and greater opportunities for Your Gospel to flow freely across our airwaves.

We ask, Lord, for You to grant Americans the wisdom to discern truth from deception.

We pray for those in the entertainment industry that they may better serve the families of our country by creating programs and movies that are uplifting in nature and extol positive virtues.

We especially pray Your blessings upon those in media, entertainment, the arts and journalism who are driven by loyalty to You. We ask for favor and acceptance for their work.

We ask You to raise up, equip, and abundantly provide for Your true disciples in the media, the arts, entertainment and journalism.

We pray for honesty in journalism.

We pray for those who would intend to bring our country down by bringing our culture down.

We ask you to foil the plans of those who would bring others down in any form.

We ask for Your transforming power in the lives of those who would divide, deceive and destroy.

AFA's Buster Wilson: 'Chick-fil-A is Neutral in the Culture War'

On his radio show today, the American Family Association’s Buster Wilson tried to explain the AFA’s rather inconsistent view of boycotts. As we’ve reported, the organization is attacking gay rights supporters for boycotting Chick-fil-A even as the AFA itself is leading a boycott of Home Depot and countless other companies for backing “the pro-homosexual movement.” According to Wilson, “Chick-fil-A is neutral in the culture war” and is “not trying to influence the culture war, not trying to influence what’s going on in the culture”:

Oh really?

Besides Chick-fil-A’s anti-LGBT workplace policies and president Dan Cathy’s well documented anti-gay views, the company’s charitable arm has given millions of dollars to anti-gay groups. Organizations receiving money include openly and undeniably political, right-wing organizations like Focus on the Family, Eagle Forum, Family Research Council, the Alliance Defense Fund and Exodus International, an ‘ex-gay’ group.

To say that Focus, Eagle Forum, ADF, FRC or Exodus are neutral in the culture war is patently absurd.

In that case, Wilson’s own AFA must be “neutral” too!

Author of Obama Exposé Repeats Debunked Churchill Bust Myth, Says Churchill ‘Rolled Over in his Grave’

Grove City College professor Paul Kengor is out with a new book, The Communist, which examines President Obama’s relationship with his grandfather’s friend Frank Marshall Davis, who has become the nexus of several right-wing conspiracy theories.

In an interview with American Family Radio’s Sandy Rios this week, Kengor went into detail about the “amazing” similarities between Davis and Obama, including what he claims is their “hate” for Winston Churchill. Kengor and Rios went on to recount the favorite right-wing story that “one of the first things” Obama did as president was remove a bust of Churchill from the Oval Office and send it back to England.

Kengor imagines that when this imaginary diss of the British leader took place, “Churchill rolled over in his grave” and “Frank Marshall Davis leapt up in his grave and laughed and saluted.”

Kengor: Well, I dug into the Chicago Star writings, the Honolulu Record writings, and you see here in Frank Marshall Davis a man who constantly bashed Wall Street, excess profits, capitalism, the rich, GOP tax cuts, General Motors, was calling for taxpayer funding of public works projects and universal healthcare, was trashing Winston Churchill. I mean, here’s a thought for you: name two Americans who hate Winston Churchill. Well, I couldn’t have done that five years ago. Now I can give you two: Barack Obama and Frank Marshall Davis. The similarities are amazing.

Rios: Well, and evidenced by, you know, one of the first things Barack Obama did, you and I both know but others might not, that he removed the bust of Winston Churchill from the White House. Sent it back to Great Britain!

Kengor: Yeah

Rios: Unbelievable!

Kenger: Unbelievable. Unbelievable and so many Americans just yawned when that happened. I mean, Churchill rolled over in his grave when that happened. Frank Marshall Davis leapt up in his grave and laughed and saluted when that happened, because Davis despised Winston Churchill, called him, like Harry Truman, called him a ‘fascist,’ a ‘racist,’ an ‘imperialist,’ a ‘colonialist,’ every name in the book. And to imagine that today, Frank Marshall Davis must be looking at the results of November 2008 and seeing all these young people that voted for Obama and all these old, one-time Cold War anti-communist Democrats and all these moderates and independents and he must just be laughing so hard that he can hardly control himself at what’s happened.

For the record, here is a photo the White House posted today of Obama and British Prime Minister looking at the Churchill bust outside the Oval Office in 2010:

Update: White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer clarifies that there were at one point two busts of Winston Churchill in the Oval Office area. One, which was a gift to George W. Bush, was removed when President Obama took office to make room for a bust of Lincoln. The other, which has been in the White House since the 1960’s, remains. And the argument that President Obama’s change of Oval Office décor signals a “hatred” for Churchill remains absurd.

Virgil Goode Hopes to Use Romney's Flip-Flops Against Him in Third Party Presidential Bid

Former congressman Virgil Goode (R-VA), best known for his malicious attacks on Muslims and immigrants, is running as the Constitution Party’s candidate for president. While as a third party candidate he likely to get little support, Public Policy Polling in a recent survey of Virginia voters found that “Goode is pulling 9% of the vote, bringing Romney down seven points to 35% and hardly moving Obama to 49%.” Goode yesterday in an interview with Steve Deace, a conservative talk show host and Romney critic, said that he seeks to exploit Romney’s flip-flops on issues like abortion rights, gay rights and gun control to win voters who want to support a candidate who “hasn’t wavered on pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, Second Amendment and those things.”

“Do you trust someone that’s been in many different positions on those three key areas or do you trust someone that has a solid record,” Goode told Deace, “and I’d submit that my record in terms of consistency is much more consistent than Governor Romney’s.”

Listen:

People will wake up and see there’s not much difference between Romney and Obama. You’ve got a choice for a true conservative, one that will stand up, that hasn’t wavered on pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, Second Amendment and those things. If they wake up and see the differences and want somebody that’s not going to be just a weak, soft difference between Obama and Romney, somebody that’s got a solid record, they’ll vote for me and we could carry Virginia and we could carry some other states too.



On your social issues, it’s a question of how much do you trust Romney. If you believe that he’s made a complete conversion on right to life and on gay marriage, then he is better than Obama. But I would wonder if Romney got in office if he would do like he did as governor of Massachusetts, you know he ordered the issuance of the first gay marriage certificates in Massachusetts as governor, I would hope that he wouldn’t revert to that but I don’t know if you could trust him. I mean, I have a solid record of opposing gay marriage and I have a solid pro-life voting record and I don’t think you’d have to worry about me with the Second Amendment either because I know Romney at one time was opposed to so-called assault weapons and then he said some negatives about the NRA but now he says he is pro-NRA. Do you trust someone that’s been in many different positions on those three key areas or do you trust someone that has a solid record, and I’d submit that my record in terms of consistency is much more consistent than Governor Romney’s.

Filibuster of 10th Circuit Nominee Would Be Unprecedented

On Monday, the Senate will hold a cloture vote to end the filibuster of Robert Bacharach to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. This filibuster is just the latest example of the destructive obstruction of judicial nominees that Republicans have engaged in from the very start of the Obama presidency.

In fact, if this filibuster succeeds, it will be the first time there has ever been a successful filibuster of a circuit court nominee who was approved in committee with bipartisan support.

Bacharach, who hails from Oklahoma, is extraordinarily well qualified to be a circuit court judge. The ABA panel that evaluates judicial nominees unanimously gave him their highest possible rating, "well qualified." He has been a magistrate judge in the Western District of Oklahoma for over a decade, giving him substantial experience with the criminal and civil legal issues he would face as a circuit court judge.

Much of Oklahoma's legal establishment has publicly supported his nomination: the Chief Judge for the Western District of Oklahoma; the Oklahoma Bar Association; the Dean of the University of Oklahoma College of Law; the General Counsel at Oklahoma City University; the Dean Emeritus at Oklahoma City University School of Law; the President of the Oklahoma County Bar Association; fellow members of the Federal Bar Association; and attorneys who worked closely with him while he was in private practice.

Bacharach also has strong bipartisan support. He has the support of President Obama and both of Oklahoma's Republican senators. In addition, he was approved by the Judiciary Committee nearly unanimously, with only Sen. Lee voting no (for reasons unrelated to the nominee). Sen. Coburn has said it would be "stupid" for his party to block a floor vote on Bacharach.

Last month, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that his party would refuse to consent to any further confirmation votes for circuit court nominees, purportedly because it is an election year. He cited the so-called "Thurmond Rule," which he mischaracterized as a practice of not allowing any judicial confirmation votes as we approach a presidential election. In reality, it is not a "rule" at all. Instead, it is the name for the general principle that the party not in the White House will sometimes slow confirmation of controversial judicial nominees at some point in the months leading up to a presidential election. It has nothing to do with consensus nominees like Bacharach.

In fact, as noted above, a successful filibuster of Bacharach would be the first time there has ever been a successful filibuster of a circuit court nominee who was approved in committee with bipartisan support. That is hardly consistent with Senate history or practice.

But it would be consistent with Republican efforts to obstruct President Obama's judicial nominees regardless of their qualifications, regardless of their strong bipartisan support, and regardless of the damage the obstruction inflicts on the American people. After years of calling filibusters of President Bush's judicial nominees unconstitutional, Senate Republicans turned around and filibustered President Obama's very first judicial nominee (David Hamilton, to the Seventh Circuit). This year, most of the circuit court nominees who have been confirmed have required a cloture vote to break Republican filibusters.

Republican efforts to filibuster Robert Bacharach are completely unjustified, but are also no surprise.

 

PFAW

Jeffress: Gays Lead a 'Miserable Lifestyle'

On yesterday’s edition of The Janet Mefferd Show, anti-gay pastor Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Dallas labeled the message of liberals “hopeless,” and said that gay people lead a “miserable lifestyle” that is predisposed to “depression, or suicide, or alcoholism.” Jefress’s comments are the latest in a string of anti-gay screeds. He has previously implied that gay rights will result in the “inevitable implosion of our country” and that gays are using a variety of “brainwashing techniques” to “inject homosexuality” into our culture.

Jeffress: God’s plan for sexuality is one man with one woman in a lifetime commitment called marriage. Any deviation from that is sin. And of course, I’m always, the retort to that is 'oh! Are you pulling a Rick Santorum and saying that homosexuality is like bestiality, uh, incest, or pedophilia'? And I say 'Yes.'. It is just as immoral as those practices. But then I’m quick to add, it’s also just as immoral as adultery, pre-marital sex, or unbiblical divorce. Any deviation from god’s plan is sin.

Mefferd: Well, but so much of what they’re trying to do now is not just say “accept us and don’t be discriminatory in your beliefs”. But also, embrace it, see that the bible really was wrong in these passages, in Leviticus and Romans I and it’s really not commending homosexuality. It’s almost as if they’re trying to co-opt the bible and make it say what it obviously does not say.

Jeffress: Absolutely, you have to do so many hermeneutical gymnastics. But what you really have to do is just throw out the bible to get to the point that you say, that uh, it’s uh normal. There are two agendas that homosexuals have in order to gain acceptance. First of all they try to normalize their behavior but also to marginalize as bigots those of us who oppose homosexuality. Normalize and marginalize are the two tactics. And they are being extremely successful about it.

...

Jeffress: We’re the ones that have a message of hope. And the message of hope we have is you don’t have to stay the way you are. You can experience freedom. You can experience life as god intended you to have it, by trusting in Christ and following his plan. You know, it’s the liberals that have no message of hope. It is the liberal message; 'you’re born that way, and you have to stay that way until the day you die.' I mean, why is it that gays, and I talk about this in my book, you know, have such a more preponderance for depression, or suicide, or alcoholism. It is a miserable lifestyle. And that is why we, as preachers of the gospel and Christians, we’ve got the message of hope, and we need to quit being ashamed to share it.

Anti-Gay Groups Prepare for Potential Ohio Referendum on Marriage Ban

Focus on the Family’s CitizenLink, the Alliance Defending Freedom (formerly Alliance Defense Fund), the Family Research Council and the Ohio-based Citizens for Community Values are planning six seminars in Ohio over the coming months to train Culture Impact Teams and “answer the cry of a culture that needs help.”

While FRC’s Tony Perkins and Focus on the Family founder James Dobson won’t be attending in person, they have sent messages, including this one from Dobson condemning an effort to repeal the state’s ban on same-sex marriage by referendum in 2013:

Traditional marriage is on the line. Will your church help guarantee its future?

Will you help us organize and mobilize your county to answer the cry of a culture that needs help?

Will you join a growing network of Ohio Pastors, church staff and laymen to be a witness in a hurting culture and defend issues that threaten our families, our faith, and our freedom?

SIX, FREE training seminars for pastors, church staff and laymen to launch a Culture Impact Team (CIT). Learn alongside other church leaders how to defend family, faith and freedom during this critical election year.

Confirmed guest speakers include: Attorney Matt Rawlings (Alliance Defending Freedom, formerly Alliance Defense Fund), former Congressman Bill Redmond (Focus on the Family), and National Field Director Randy Wilson (Family Research Council), Pastor J. C. Church, former Representative Seth Morgan and CCV President Phil Burress.

Additional perks: Hear about Watchmen on the Wall, an FRC ministry that supports the local pastor. –Access to sermon starters and research on the issues facing our families and culture. –CIT

Manual to multiply your leadership and influence in your church and community-A Voter Impact Toolkit DVD, containing 12 high quality videos you can pick from to encourage your church, as well as all you need to do a Christian Citizenship Sunday.

Religious Right and Dominionist Leaders Come Together (Again) for 'America for Jesus'

Back in February, we reported that pastor Anne Gimenez was in the process of recreating the 1980 Washington for Jesus rally, which she led with her late husband, Bishop John Gimenez. The new election-oriented prayer rally, called America for Jesus, is scheduled to be held in Philadelphia’s Independence Mall in September and has already received the endorsements of far-right dominionists including Cindy Jacobs, Lou Engle, Jim Garlow and Harry Jackson.

But as with Rick Perry’s The Response and Lou Engle’s The Call prayer rallies, it was only a matter of time before more mainstream Religious Right leaders linked arms with their more openly dominionists brethren.

The latest America for Jesus solicitation mentions support from not only New Apostolic Reformation leaders like Che Ahn, Rick Joyner, Chuck Pierce, Doug Stringer and Barbara Yoder, but also from David Barton of WallBuilders, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council and Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel. Even televangelists Kenneth Copeland, Gordon Robertson and John Hagee have endorsed the event.

In promotional materials [pdf], the event’s organizers use language closely centered around Seven Mountains dominionism, which calls for conservative Christians to take dominion over the seven spheres of society: family; arts and entertainment; business; education; religion and the church; media; and government. They also dabble in some Christian Nation revisionist history, using two fake quotes attributed to founding fathers George Washington (“It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible”) and James Madison (“We have staked the future upon our capacity to sustain ourselves according the Ten Commandments of God”).

The Bible provides guiding principles for all spheres of society: government, family, church, science and technology, economics and business, education, media and communications, and arts and entertainment. Every book of the Bible gives us instruction and principles on how to establish God’s kingdom purposes on earth.

If we live by His commands in our own lives, we will impact people around us and their spheres of society. And if Christian leaders in these spheres will uphold God’s principles in their positions of influence, God’s blessings will be multiplied in a healthy and wealthy society….God’s kingdom purposes will come forth on earth as in heaven!

Gay Marriage Brought the Flood

When the California Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality in 2008, one rabbi claimed that the sin of homosexuality is so egregious that it caused God in the times of Noah “to annihilate the world and start from the beginning.” The rabbi, who will be speaking at Glenn Beck’s upcoming Religious Right meeting, apparently is not alone in this view: yesterday, Pastor Aaron Fruh challenged American Family Radio listeners to “find any society in human history that ever tried that experiment and lived to tell about it, they’ve all been destroyed, because as [Chick-fil-A CEO] Dan Cathy said we’re shaking our fist into the face of God.”

“So when it comes to civilization and society, God knew that the people of the earth were going to destroy themselves through same-sex marriage,” Fruh said, “so that’s why he brought the flood.”

Listen:

Gun Owners of America Director Suggests Armed Citizens Could Have Stopped Holocaust, Warns of Post-Colorado Shooting Gun Control

Gun Owners of America executive director Larry Pratt, who earlier this week floated the theory that the Colorado theater shooting was an inside job aimed at promoting gun control, was back on the press circuit today. In an interview with Iowa radio host Steve Deace, Pratt urged listeners to compare the dozen deaths in the Aurora movie theater with the millions of deaths in Nazi concentration camps – deaths which he claims occurred because the Nazi government had taken away the guns of the German populace, preventing them from “shooting back”:

Well, we tragically lost 12 people. How many people a day were lost in concentration camps that were populated by...well, two things had happened: ‘Jews are bad, Jews are bad, Jews are bad, Jews are bad, all the evil in the world is Jews, Jews, Jews,’ and disarmament of the German population. They started coming for the Jews, and they came for other people as well. Nobody shoots back!

When they started to, when George III thought he could muscle us around with his Redcoat troops, we taught him a thing or two that actually, Mr. George, you need to learn a lesson yourself and that is you violated all of the charters that protect the rights of Englishmen.

Pratt drew not-so-subtle parallels between King George and President Obama, warning that the president, if reelected, will act immediately to close down gun shops. “The guy is clearly the imperial president,” Pratt said:

Here’s what I think might happen after the election. If the president, God forbid, is reelected, I can see him telling gun stores through the Justice Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, you’re no longer gonna be able to sell caliber handguns above 380, and if you do we’ll pull your license and you’ll be out of business that day. And you’ll no longer be able to sell semi-automatic rifles and shotguns that are capable of firing more than a fixed magazine load of three to five rounds, in other words one that can accept a large magazine. You just won’t be able to be in business if you want to sell those kinds of firearms. That I can see the president doing. Unconstutional, illegal. But then his position on forcing churches to dispense abortifacants, his position on undoing the amnesty laws, his positions on so many things. A court order telling him to allow drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, ‘No way, Jose,’ was basically his response, although I don’t think he speaks that much Spanish.

So the guy is clearly the imperial president. He thinks he, ‘Well, I was elected, I won the election,’ he told the Republicans once in a rare meeting with Republicans. He doesn’t accept criticism kindly, he gets angry quite quickly, he’s very thin-skinned.

Scalia’s Misdirection on Citizens United

Does buying lipstick give you special influence over elected officials when they're making policy?
PFAW

Florida Pastor: Gays Can't Handle the Truth

Jack Hakimian is a Florida pastor who is turning into something of a Religious Right martyr after the North Miami public schools rebuked him for delivering anti-gay screeds on school property. Today, Hakimian took his case to American Family Radio, where he complained of “censorship” by gay groups. He said gay rights advocates “know that if we keep debating from biology, from theology and from sociology that homosexuality is not a healthy lifestyle, it’s not God’s plan, we will persuade people’s minds,” and so those advocates “want to destroy our presence.”

Watch:

Are Boycotts Moral? For the Religious Right, It Depends on Who They're Targeting

Last year, Liberty Counsel and the Family Research Council were outraged — outraged! — when gay rights advocates began pressuring companies to end their ties to a so-called charity group called the CGBG, which funds anti-gay organizations including LC and FRC. The two groups urged retailers to “remain neutral in the culture wars” and accused gay rights supporters of “economic terrorism.” The FRC even created a website where activists could call on companies to “remain neutral in the current cultural battles, thus enabling you to focus on business and not force consumers to make purchasing choices based on corporate political agendas.”

Of course, both LC and FRC had organized and endorsed similar pressure campaigns against corporations in the past, but apparently those didn’t constitute “economic terrorism.”

As Chick-fil-A, a company that bankrolls anti-gay groups and whose CEO has said marriage equality is inviting God’s judgment, faces a national backlash for its opposition to gay rights, once again the Religious Right is employing an almost pathetic use of double standards.

The National Organization for Marriage, which literally has two campaigns dedicated to boycotting Starbucks and General Mills for refusing to stay “neutral” in the marriage equality debate, is now outraged that gay rights activists are boycotting Chick-fil-A.

NOM's state affiliate in Minnesota organized a protest outside of the corporate headquarters of General Mills and in a letter to Minnesota corporations, NOM asked that companies “stay neutral and respect the conscience rights of your customers and employees who are on both sides” of a proposed state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

Another group shockingly outraged by protests targeting Chick-fil-A is the American Family Association.

The AFA and its subgroups One Million Moms and One Million Dads have boycotted countless companies, most recently leading boycotts and pressure campaigns against Home Depot, Ford, GAP, Macy's, JC Penney for their advertising campaigns and efforts to create inclusive work environments “rather than remain neutral in the culture war,” and against DC, Marvel and Archie Comics for including gay characters.

In fact, the AFA goes so far as to claim, without any evidence, that it’s pressure campaign is responsible for financial problems at JC Penney.

So the question needs to be asked, did the AFA, in the words of its spokesman Bryan Fischer, "go Ahmadinejad" on JC Penney, Home Depot and Archie?

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