David Barton

Barton: There Were No Gun Accidents During the Founding Era

Today, Rick Green and David Barton weighed-in on the tragedy at Sandy Hook by laying out not only the standard Religious Right solutions of putting prayer and the Bible back in schools, but also adding a unique suggestion to start arming everyone from early childhood.

Explaining that he began teaching his own kids how to use guns at the age of four, Barton said that people only want to get rid of guns because they are afraid of them, which can be attributed to the fact that they don't know how to use them.

As such, if everyone had a gun and was taught how to use it from childhood, there would never be any firearm incidents or accidents, just like during the founding era:

That's what these guys do not see and do not look at; they're just flat scared of guns.  And the solution to that is exactly what the Founding Fathers said and that is you start teaching kids to use guns when they're very young because gun accidents are caused by non-familiarity with guns; once you're familiar with them, you don't have accidents with them.

I have searched and in the founding era I think I've only ever found two gun accidents and everybody was hauling guns back then; you took your guns to church, you were required by state law in some states to take your guns to church.  We didn't have accidents because everyone was familiar with how to use them.  It's not being familiar that makes is dangerous.

Right Wing Round-Up - 1/9/13

A Math and Reading Comprehension Lesson for David Barton

David Barton's tendency to utterly misrepresent things in order to promote his own right-wing political agenda is well-established, but it never hurts to keep documenting examples, especially since he continues to provide them on a regular basis.

On today's broadcast of "WallBuilders Live," for instance, Barton claimed that the reason President Obama won re-election was because voters "were not thinking right."  And one of the reasons voters don't "think right" is because the higher education system is dominated by Obama supporters, as demonstrated by the fact that, according to Barton, 96% of the professors at Ivy League colleges donated to Obama's campaign:

After the election, we had those two days where we talked about it afterwards and we went through a lot of the numbers just showing that people were not thinking right.  They voted according to what they thought, but they were thinking wrong about so many areas.

And so, if we're going to change the direction of the nation and the way its headed, we have to change the way people think.  It's real simple. 

What are the areas that cause us to think the way we do?  Well, the media is one, education is one, the pulpit is one.  There are several areas that help us shape the way we think.  Now, I will point out, if we're looking for help out of universities, it ain't going to happen.

This is a report that I just read that is kind of amazing: 96% of the faculty at the elite colleges donated to President Obama ... Not just voted; 96% of faculty donated.

So you have 96% of faculty who donated to the Obama campaign; 96% from the elite colleges.  So if we're looking to get help out of the schools, that ain't going to happen.

You will be undoubtedly be surprised to learn that the report to which Barton referred found not that 96% of faculty donated to Obama but rather that 96% of the donations made by faculty and staff from the Ivy League schools went to the Obama campaign.

Think about it: if only one donation was made by a faculty member from a particular university and it went to the Obama campaign, then the percentage of donations coming from that university that went to Obama would be 100%. But that doesn't mean that 100% of the faculty at that university donated to Obama, which is the claim that Barton is making.

Considering that Barton is a former math teacher, you'd think he'd be a little better at math.

Right Wing Round-Up - 1/2/13

  • PFAW: Empty Courtrooms in Obama’s First Term: A Slow Start on Judicial Nominations Magnified Many Times Over By Republican Obstruction.
  • Chris Rodda: Barton’s “Jefferson Lies” Once Again Listed as a Thomas Nelson Book on Amazon –Thomas Nelson Probably Won’t Like That .
  • Joe Hagan @ New York Magazine: Blues Cruise.
  • Jeremy Hooper: How dare the 'warlike' bloggers quote Dr Dobson accurately?!
  • Matt Gertz @ Media Matters:  NRA Blames Violent Films For Mass Shootings, But Their Museum Features "Hollywood Guns."
  • Steve Benen @ The Maddow Blog: House GOP blocks Violence Against Women Act.
  • Scott Keyes @ Think Progress: Leading Conservative Religious Organization Warns That Christians Will Soon Be Treated Like Blacks In Jim Crow Era.

David Barton Explains The Second Amendment

On last night's episode of "The Glenn Beck Program," guest host Tim Ballard brought on David Barton to give his "expert" perspective on how the Founding Fathers would have responded to the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Barton insisted that the Founders called the Second Amendment "the biblical right of self defense" and crafted it to ensure that citizens could protect themselves again any and all threats, including the government, with equal firepower. 

In Barton's view, whatever weapons the government possesses must also be available to the population at large because the citizens might one day need to resist the government, so this principle of "equal power ... has got to control the gun control debate":

Barton: 'Show Me That in the Bible and I Will be Concerned About it'

On today's episode of "WallBuilders Live," Rick Green and David Barton interviewed the ALCJ's David French about a piece he wrote following the election entitled "Progressive Evangelicals’ Epic Fail."  The discussion prompted Barton to declare that there really should be no such thing as the Religious Right or the Religious Left, as all Christians should just be "biblical" in their voting ... and since things like health care reform and climate change are not mentioned in the Bible, they shouldn't be things that Christians consider when casting their ballots:

Where does the Bible line up on education? Alright, that's where I am.

Where does the Bible line up on taxation?  Okay, that's where I am.

Where does the Bible line up on social programs? Alright, that's where I am.

And from that standpoint there has been, over the last twelve years particularly, especially every presidential election there's been a lining-up of the Religious Left and the Religious Right.

Religious Left runs in, as they have the last few years, and says 'Christians, you can't be concerned about stuff like life and marriage, you gotta be concerned about climate change, you have to be concerned about health care' and they go through all these things.  And I am concerned about that, if I can find it in the Bible. And that's really what it has to boil down to.

Sometimes we let our cultural positions or our political positions trump our biblical positions.  And that's what the Religious Left has done, saying 'yeah, yeah, yeah, we know the Bible is about life and marriage and those other things, but we're really concerned about global warming and about saving the planet and et cetera and so we want you to be concerned about that too.'

Alright, show me that in the Bible and I will be concerned about it.

MI State Senator Behind State's Anti-Union Law Credits 'Divine Providence'

Patrick Colbeck, the Michigan state senator who, along with state Rep. Mike Shirkey, was the driving force behind Michigan's anti-union "right to work" legislation, appeared on "WallBuilders Live" today where he, and David Barton, attributed the legislation's passage to "divine providence":

I had a great colleague in the state House, state Representative Mike Shirkey has been phenomenal, he's a phenomenal Christian. 

We've also got what I call kind of a patchwork quilt that if any one of those patches would have came out of the quilt, this never would have happened.  We had folks at the grassroots level, we had union members that were for us, we had business leaders that were for us, we had folks that had been in the political environment for quite some time, we lobbyists helping us.  There were people all over the place and, reflecting upon everything that happened, if any one of those pieces - simple little pieces - would have disappeared and we wouldn't have had them, then it never would have passed.

So this is, we believe, knit together with some divine providence and when we pursued it, we pursued it with biblical principles.  We had what we called the Philippians 4:8 Strategy that said focus on what's noble, true, excellent, and praiseworthy.  Don't go off an do the usual political whack-a-mole when you find somebody who's not a hundred percent agreement with you; you go off and systematically work through them, make the values proposition for them and give them a reason to vote it and not against it.

Right Wing Leftovers - 12/12/12

  • Tomorrow, FRC will host a lecture and discussion featuring former Susan G. Komen Foundation president Karen Handel "on the bullying of Komen by Planned Parenthood."
  • Gary Bauer says opposition to Michigan's "right to work" law is "a perfect example of the left’s anti-freedom agenda."
  • Jake Tapper of ABC News seems to have become Glenn Beck's favorite journalist.
  • David Barton says that "recent years have seen a rekindling of national interest in America’s true history ," a fact that is "borne out" by the success of his book "The Jefferson Lies." Pardon us as we scoff derisively.
  • Finally, Justice Antonin Scalia ought to be very proud to receive the support of Matt Barber: "[I]nsofar as homosexual behavior is a deviant form of human sexuality and that it deviates from natural sexuality between male and female as we were unequivocally biologically designed, Justice Scalia is right. In a world that is embracing moral relativism, Justice Scalia is a voice for the reality that there are things that are true and there are things that are not true."

For the Fifth Time, David Barton Falsely Claims the Constitution is Full of Direct Quotations Out of the Bible

We are really starting to wonder if David Barton literally does not understand the meaning of the phrase "direct quotation" since he continues to falsely claim that the Constitution contains dozens of direct quotations from the Bible.

Barton repeated the lie for the fifth time when he spoke at the ProFamily Legislators Conference shortly after the election, which aired today on "WallBuilders Live":

I could take you through most clauses of the Constitution, but it's interesting when you look at the Constitution and the clauses, if you know the Bible - and a lot of people don't; they look at the Constitution and say "oh, that's cool language."  If you know the Bible, you go "that's a direct quote out of a Bible verse."

That's why so many Bible verses are directly cited in the Constitution.  When people tell me the Constitution is a secular document, that tells me they're biblically illiterate because if you know the Bible, you'll instantly recognize these verses in Constitutional clauses.

As we have pointed out time and time and time and time again, not one of the Constitutional provisions he cites as evidence actually directly quote the Bible in any manner whatsoever, yet Barton continues to make this same false claim while insisting that anyone who points out the fact that he is lying is just "biblically illiterate."

Right Wing Round-Up - 12/3/12

Right Wing Round-Up - 11/27/12

Barton Says Marriage Equality Election Wins Were 'Rhetorical Victory,' Falsely Claims it Lost in Minnesota

On Friday's "WallBuilders Live" radio program, David Barton and Rick Green hosted another "good news Friday" broadcast during which they traditionally discuss "good news from around the country that the media doesn't report!"

During the broadcast, Barton commented on the various marriage victories during the recent election, seeing "good news" in the fact that, despite the wins, polls show that most Americans still do not support marriage equality ... which is a claim that should probably be taken with a grain of salt seeing as it came from Barton who repeatedly and falsely claimed that marriage equality only won in three out of the four states where it was on the ballot, asserting that "traditional marriage" was victorious in Minnesota:

There is some good news. There are some storm clouds, we saw storm clouds election night. You look at the marriage amendments; three of the four marriage issues went down. In Minnesota, it almost went down, it was like a 50-50 prop; it should not have been that close that marriage is a man and a woman, but going down in Maine, and going down in Washington, and going down in Maryland but preserving barely in Minnesota.

While we did lose three of the four states and almost lost the fourth state, nationally the support is still high. A poll done on election day found that sixty percent of Americans strongly support marriage as a man and a woman.

It's a rhetorical victory for same-sex marriage proponents because they say "hey, we won three out of the last four states that voted on this." Yeah, with about 50.5% support, you know, barely.

There's no compelling victory here, but nonetheless it's regrettable we lost those three states but at the same time you still have nearly two to one support for traditional marriage in America.

Does Barton really not know that the amendment to ban gay marriage in Minnesota lost? Maybe he ought to visit the Minnesota for Marriage website, which led the fight to pass the amendment:

As we shared with you following the election last week, and as you’ve probably heard ad nauseum from the media since then, despite our best efforts, a majority of Minnesota voters rejected the proposal to secure the definition of marriage in our state constitution.

...

After looking at the results here and in other states, it is clear that we were swimming against a powerful tide that swept the entire nation. Our opponents raised vastly more resources from gay marriage activists across the country who were determined to make this the year their unbroken losing streak would end. They enjoyed the support of the elite in politics, the media and entertainment. And, perhaps worst of all was that many evangelicals, including some prominent pastors and faith leaders, either refused to support the amendment or just remained silent.

Obviously we are very disappointed in the outcome, but we have no regrets in making the effort. Marriage as the union of one man and one woman has served Minnesota well. As our opponents frequently pointed out, marriage remains the union of a man and a woman even after last week’s vote.

Right Wing Round-Up - 11/13/12

Beck & Barton Say Romney Will Win Because 'We are Repeating all of the Steps' the Founders Took to Create This Nation

Glenn Beck had David Barton on his radio program today to, once again, discuss their conviction that Mitt Romney is not only going to win the election tomorrow, but win it in a landslide.  And the reason they are so confident, explained Beck, is because the Tea Party and prayer rallies and conservative grassroots activism are all just like what the Founding Fathers did to create this nation, so "we are repeating all of the steps that it took for use to be free around the time of the Declaration of Independence."  

On top of that, Barton claimed that the conservative movement's organizational skills, voter ID programs, and "microtargeting" abilities are "so much more sophisticated" than what the Obama campaign is doing that Romney is going to end up winning the election with 330 electoral votes: 

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Barton: Administration Allowed Libya Attack as 'Perfect Set-Up' for Passing Laws to Criminalize Criticism of Islam

Today on "WallBuilders Live," David Barton said that, based on recent discussions he held with members of Congress, he now believes that the Obama administration allowed the attack in Benghazi, Libya to take place because it would be "the perfect set-up" to pass anti-blasphemy laws aimed at protecting Islam: 

We've seen all the stuff on Libya and it still comes out and I recently had some really interesting face-time with some members of Congress who have been briefed on all this stuff, as all the members of Congress have, and they were telling me stuff that I have not yet heard come out in the news.

I did not recognize that, I guess maybe a year ago in the UN, the United States signed on to a resolution in the UN joining with 57 Islamic governments, we signed on to a resolution to criminalize criticism of Islam, anti-blasphemy codes. We signed on to a resolution supporting anti-blasphemy codes. I hadn't heard that in the news, I didn't know that that was out there.

But the way this has worked in other nations, the way other nations have moved into anti-blasphemy codes is they have an eruption of violence, as in Denmark where several legislators were killed, parliamentarians killed in Denmark, and Denmark says "you know what, to keep our people safe, you're not going to be allowed to criticize Islam anymore because every time you criticize it, somebody gets killed so we're banning criticism of Islam."

You have the same thing going in England where they've had so many Islamic riots and they say "hey people, to save our own lives, to save the lives of people you can't criticize Islam any more because it keeps getting people killed."

Now here we come to Benghazi. We know that two weeks before this happened they pulled out every single military person that was there; they're gone. There's no trained professionals any longer representing Benghazi. We know that the Ambassador was in meetings throughout the day, about thirty minutes after the last meeting is over this thing erupts. We know we have live-time drone footage watching this go down. We know that the cameras were there, we know that they were in contact. We know that two of the outside guys that were just subcontractors were both Special Forces guys; those two guys ran in and we know from the cameras and the drones that the compound was surrounded with military vehicles, with their tanks and personnel carriers and rockets; so we've got military surrounding the American embassy and there were two Specials Forces guys that were contractors that went in and grabbed weapons and those two guys held off the military for six hours. We also know that one hour away was a Delta Force team that said "we can get there, be there in an hour" - they were told "stand down, you can't go in in an hour." We know that we had military planes all over the place; my gosh, the President's been bombing Libya for however long to get Qaddafi out of there, we said don't send those in.

So we're watching this thing develop, we watched four lives get lost and then what happens is we're told "oh, it's this video, we can't be criticizing Islam, this video that criticized Islam, it cost four people [their lives.]" This is the perfect set-up for the anti-blasphemy resolution that we joined on to and said we're going to be a part of. I think it backfired; I really think that's where they were headed.

Right Wing Round-Up - 11/1/12

Barton Offers 'Another Example of the Many Biblical Principles Directly Incorporated into the Constitution'

A few months ago, we posted a video of David Barton falsely claiming that the Constitution's provision regarding treason "is a verbatim quote out of Ezekiel 18:20." Even by Barton's lax standards, this claim made no sense as the Bible passage has literally nothing to Constitutional provision he cited:

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

vs

The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.

It turned out that Barton was not talking about the treason section of Article III, Section 3 but rather the provision pertaining to bills of attainder:

The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.

Obviously, this is not a "verbatim quote" either, but in his book "The Founders Bible" Barton tries to make the case that is evidence that these "Biblical principles [were] directly incorporated into the Constitution":

[W]hen a nation is under the curse of the Lord, children are punished for what their parents did ... But when the Lord exalts a nation, the policy changes - each individual's actions are imputed only to himself and not to his children ... Americans understood this Biblical principle, and so when they separated from Great Britain, they changed their laws accordingly so that no one would be punished for a crime he himself did not commit ... These two clauses are but another example of the many Biblical principles directly incorporated into the Constitution.

Barton's book also contains an article on the origins of the Declaration of Independence written by Paul Jehle, Executive Director of the Plymouth Rock Foundation, who claims that the rights mentioned in the document came directly out of the book of Genesis:

When we look at the Declaration of Independence and the truths they held as self-evident - the list of inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (which is another way the Founders spoke of the right to private property) - those ideas were not the invention of great minds of the Enlightenment; they originated with the source of light Himself, God. They were revealed truth our forefathers found in the pages of Scripture.

The charter that God made with Adam was threefold. First, "Be fruitful and multiply," which is mankind's basic right to life. Second, "fill or replenish, the earth." The Hebrew word fill or replenish involved the scientific method, meaning to take something that we observe, then break it down to its essential ingredients and reform it into a different form. It is a concept that requires the right to liberty. When we have liberty, we can take natural resources and then refill the earth with the same natural resources in different forms through invention and technology. Third, "subdue the earth and rule, or have dominion, over it," which is the right to own private property. Dominion of the earth simply means we have a parcel of land that is our exclusive possession that we steward before God.

Barton: 3rd Grade Reading Levels are the 'Best Indicator' of Who Will End up in Prison

On "WallBuilders Live" today, David Barton and Rick Green were discussing the importance and benefits of school choice in terms of improved scholastic performance.  While making the case, Barton explained that during Glenn Beck's "Restoring Love" event earlier this year, WallBuilders was tasked with organizing volunteer opportunities for the thousands of attendees and one of the groups they partnered with was a church that had been asked to help improve the reading ability of local third grade students.

And the reason this was so important, Barton explained, is because the Texas Department of Corrections uses the number of third grade students who are not reading at grade level to determine how many prison beds they will need in fifteen years "because kids that are not reading at grade level in the thrid grade, they're the kids that end up in prison.  That's the best indicator they have found is where these kids are in third grade": 

You will undoubtedly be shocked to learn that this is an ubran legend and not at all true.

Barton: It was Only the Government-Regulated Industries that had to be Bailed Out

Recently, David Barton appeared on a television program entitled "Fixing The Money Thing" with Gary and Drenda Keesee where he explained that America has struggled economically because it has not followed Jesus' teachings about taxation and government regulation, asserting that it was only the industries that were government-regulated that failed and had to be bailed out through TARP and the Stimulus Package while "the free market did pretty good":

UPDATE: Barton then inexplicably followed up this assertion by stating that "in 2008, before the TARP and bailout, one hundred percent of business in America were open and free and competitive" while only 35% are that way today ... which completely undermines his earlier claim that it was the heavily regulated industries that needed a government bailout!  If in 2008, 100% of business in America was free, then how is it possible that it was government regulation that caused them to fail? 

Barton Blames PFAW and Others for Creating 'Toxic" Environment Responsible for Christian Persecution

In August, the Liberty Institute and the Family Research Council released a joint report entitled "The Survey on Religious Hostility in America" which purported to be a "collection of more than 600 cases, detailing religious bigotry throughout America" ... but, for some reason, the incident they love to cite more than any other is a nearly twenty year old myth about an elementary school student who was supposedly yanked out of his seat and yelled at simply for praying before eating his lunch in the school cafeteria.

In reality, the student was disciplined for fighting in the lunch room in 1994 but the Religious Right continues to perpetuate this lie to this day. In fact, David Barton cites it repeatedly despite the fact that it is demonstrably false, and did so again today on "WallBuilders Live," as did the Liberty Institute's Kelly Shackelford, who was on the program to promote the report:

Barton: What does it say to that elementary kid who got jerked out of his seat and hauled to the principle's office in front of everybody else and told don't you ever pray over your lunch again, period? What kind of impression is that giving? Jesus said "suffer the little children to come unto me" and we're doing our best to say "absolutely no way, absolutely not will we ever allow any kid to get to you" ... this is crazy stuff.

Shackelford: It's all the way from a ten-year old boy who was quote "caught" praying over his meal in the lunch cafeteria who was lifted out of his chair and carried to the principle's office where he was told to never do that again while he was at school.

Even though this incident never actually happened, Barton sees it as proof that we at PFAW and other groups have created a "toxic" and "hostile" environment in which public officials are pressured into persecuting Christians:

Barton: And I really blame this climate on the secular groups, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, the Americans United, the People For the American Way, the Military Freedom Foundation, all these guys who have so made the climate so toxic that if you share your faith, public officials feel like they have to come down on you with both feet otherwise they'll get sued and end up in court and have to spend millions of dollars defending something religions. And so these guys have created such a hostility in the public that now public officials and school officials and city council officials and those who run senior's centers and everything else are so scared to death of seeing faith that if they see it, they feel like they have to jump on it with both feet and both hands and bring out the hammers and run over you with a car and pull out a chainsaw and cut you to pieces. They over-react and I really blame a lot of those organizations. 

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