Equality For All

Ted Cruz, Archbishop Lori Will Address FRC's 'Watchmen' Pastors

The Family Research Council’s Watchmen on the Wall conference is an annual gathering for pastors and other church leaders to hear from a panoply of right-wing speakers and get motivated to “transform America.” Our coverage of last year’s event highlights speakers’ attacks on evolution, secularism, Islam, LGBT people, and other tools of Satan.

This year’s conference, which takes place in Washington DC May 22-24, has been promoted by FRC for months.  In April, FRC sent an excited alert that Sen. Ted Cruz, a Tea Party and Religious Right favorite who is reportedly mulling a 2016 presidential bid, had confirmed.

Based on other confirmed speakers, it seems likely that there will be two major themes to this year’s gathering: 1) religious liberty in America is under attack by Obama and his gay allies; and 2) only the church – led by uncompromising fired up pastors – can save freedom and America.

A notable addition to the cast of conservative evangelicals is William Lori, Archbishop of the Diocese of Baltimore and chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty. Lori has led the bishops’ attack on the Obama administration’s proposed regulations requiring insurance coverage of contraception.  Lori, who believes that “aggressive secularity” is “becoming the established ‘religion’ in our country today,” will be right at home with his friends at the Family Research Council. A typical FRC Action mailing from Tony Perkins earlier this year said President Obama is out to “crush freedom.” The same letter warns about “death panels” under Obamacare, which Perkins calls “the tip of the tyranny-iceberg.”

Also entertaining the Watchmen will be Rep. James Lankford, who earlier this year blamed gun violence on “welfare moms” overmedicating their kids with psychiatric drugs because they “want to get additional benefits.”  At FRC’s Values Voter Summit in September, Lankford said of the dispute over contraception coverage, “this is not a war on women, this is a war on people of faith.” 

Also confirmed is Ergun Caner, who lost his position at Liberty University after Muslim and Christian bloggers, and then journalists, began to expose the falsehoods in the Jihadi-to-Jesus life story that Caner had used to make a name for himself in the post-9/11 evangelical universe. Caner will probably echo his remarks at the 2009 Values Voter Summit, where his message to Christians who were not being outspoken enough on the issues of the day: “You need to preach, teach, and reach, or just shut up and get out of our way.”

Anti-gay activist Harry Jackson is quick to invoke Satan and other demonic powers as the forces behind the gay rights movement, which he portrays as an enemy of religious freedom. He has charged that a “radical” gay element is trying to “close down every church in America.” In fact, one of his columns was titled,” Why do Gays Hate Religious Freedom?”  Jackson’s apocalyptic anti-Obama rhetoric did not convince many Black Christians to vote against Obama, but Jackson thinks they’ll be sorry. God, he says, will “take out” those who chose “race over grace.” Jackson is a long-time FRC ally; he and Perkins co-authored Personal Faith, Public Policy, which calls Supreme Court rulings on church-state issues “assaults” on Christianity.

Jim Garlow, a California pastor who led church backing for Prop 8 in California and was then tapped by Newt Gingrich to run one of his political groups, had warned before the election that an Obama reelection would destroy the country.  During an FRC post-election special Garlow said that Christians should expect massive persecution from the government.  At last year’s Watchmen on the Wall conference, Garlow spoke at a press conference attacking President Obama’s use of religious language to describe his support for marriage equality. Evoking the words of a colonial preacher, Garlow said, “if necessary, here we die.” In an FRC DVD promoting Watchmen on the Wall, Garlow says an FRC-produced video was crucial to the Prop 8 win.

Richard Land is retiring in October after 25 years as head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty commission; he was dogged by controversy during the past year over plagiarism charges and racially inflammatory remarks he made regarding the Trayvon Martin killing.  Land has charged that the only reason the Obama administration proposed regulations on contraception coverage was to "set the precedent of ramming this down our throats and forcing us to surrender our First amendment freedom of religion." Land says God will unleash judgment on America for the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

Watchmen will also hear from Jacob Aranza, whose 1983 book Backward Masking Unmasked warned that rock music was encoded with satanic messages that would entice teens into drug use and abnormal sexual behavior. Aranza says he burned “hundreds of thousands” of albums in those days. More recently, Aranza was an endorser of Rick Perry’s “Awakening” and participated in Religious Right strategy sessions convened by James Robison to try to prevent Obama’s re-election. In 2011, Aranza and Perkins appeared together on Robison’s television show, and Aranza gushed about Perkin’s work to mobilize pastors:

Tony Perkins is one of the great heroes in America today. He is a hero because it is unseen. He is uniting and equipping the most important people in America, and that's the pastors in America. If the local church is the hope of the world then pastors are the hope of the local church. Tony Perkins exists to encourage them and to equip them and to empower them. He's taking regular pastors -- the average church in America, James, as you know is less than 200 people; 80% of the churches in America are 200 or less -- and he is taking men like that and he is turning them into absolute heroes, just like pastors in Maine who are literally changing the moral fiber of an entire state because he has equipped them and empowered them and told them they're the people that are supposed to be the hedge of builders, and he is encouraging them to do just that.…I believe that as you speak you are literally trumpeting a sound that is encouraging pastors across America and families across America that are Christians to unite together to see God once again bring spiritual awakening to our nation.

JC Church is one of FRC’s pastor leaders “networking churches in Ohio to answer the call on moral issues.”  His 3 Cord Alliance, which is affiliated with FRC, teaches pastors “how to bring sound scripturally based influence and change to your community.” Church has been praised by Phil Burress of Citizens for Community Values: “I believe that if all the pastors in Ohio were like Pastor Church, we would have an army that Satan could not stop. He understands that America is led by the pulpit and we count on him to unite fellow pastors and their congregations to be the salt and light we so desperately need in the world today.”

Jack Hibbs is a California-based preacher who also pushed Prop 8; in 2011 he helped lead an unsuccessful effort to overturn the state’s SB 48, which he charged would lead to public schools indoctrinating students.  In a video urging pastors to get involved, he said it is not enough to teach and preach the word of God, pastors needed to be “culture changers for Christ.” Leading into the 2012 election Hibbs was outspoken about the fact that Christians should vote for Romney over Obama. In a radio show the day after the 2012 elections, He says he was on the phone with Tony Perkins on election night and they had both believed that the outcome was up to the church: “The answer wouldn’t be determined in the White House or the statehouse….the answer for righteousness or unrighteousness, for light or for darkness, for liberty or tyranny, would be decided by the pastors.” Given the way things turned out, Hibbs says “I believe the responsibility, the outcome, and the fallout falls into the hands of the pulpits of America’s pastors who did not speak up….” Hibbs also echoes Mitt Romney’s infamous “47 percent” remarks: “those who are looking for handouts, they don’t want to work, they want the government to give things to them, overwhelmingly voted for Barack Obama.” Hibbs said he was disappointed but not discouraged, because “God’s on the throne” and therefore “God has appointed him to be our president for God’s purposes – OK that means God has got some pretty gnarly purposes coming for America.”

There’s a special role at the conference for FRC’s executive vice president, retired Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin.  Boykin retired from the military after being reprimanded by then-President Bush for making speeches depicting the war on terrorism as a Christian holy war against Islam. FRC hired Boykin last year after he was disinvited from speaking at West Point after faculty and cadets objected.  Boykin and his Religious Right allies portrayed his mythical martyrdom as an attack on freedom of speech and religion. At last year’s Values Voter Summit, Boykin invoked Marx, Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler in denouncing what he said is an effort to move Americans away from belief in a sovereign God.  He says everything President Obama is doing is right out of the” Communist Manifesto.”

Perkins seems to be counting on Boykin to strong-arm pastors at the conference into making a concrete commitment to political activism. In an insert in a packet mailed to pastors, Perkins says Boykin will offer the “concluding challenge” – and he insists that pastors book their flights home no earlier than 4pm so that they can stay.  “During the Briefing, we will share details of the strategic plan the Lord is using to bring revival and renewal in communities around the nation through the engagement of pastors. At the end, we have a ‘call to decision’ or ‘invitation’ sort of like many of you do in a worship service. Just as you want those attending your worship service to stay and respond, we would respectfully ask the same of you.” Perkins has some leverage – FRC picks up most of the tab for one pastor from each church.

FRC launched Watchmen on the Wall in 2004. A 2010 promotional DVD said the group was up to 14,000 pastors; it said Perkins’ goal was to have 40,000 Watchmen pastors by 2015. Pastors who sign up get access to regular briefings, model sermons, and other toolkits for mobilizing their congregations and communities.  The same promotional video contains a clip of “historian” David Barton quoting 19th Century preacher Charles Finney saying, in effect, that if the country is going to hell, it’s pastors’ fault.  The notion that America can only be saved by more aggressive preachers is a recurring theme at Religious Right gatherings, including Liberty Counsel’s recent Awakening conference.

Bachmann Urges 'Spiritual Warfare' to Enforce Right-Wing Policies

Last week, RWW posted video of Michele Bachmann calling the 9-11 and Benghazi attacks God’s judgment on America.  A few weeks earlier, at Liberty Counsel’s Awakening conference, Bachmann insisted that public policy should reflect what she thinks God says – and she urged American Christians to focus on “spiritual warfare” in order to promote right-wing policies.

Watch:

You see if we retreat from our values and fail to make the case on issues like marriage – because it is one man, one woman – because God said it is. Not because it’s poll tested – because God said it is. And life – not because it’s poll tested, because God stands for life. He made us in his image and likeness. And if we tread too softly on issues, like taking on Islamic jihad, and if we fight too timidly, and if we strive too meekly, then I think we all understand we very easily could come face to face with defeat, and then our nation would in fact pay a great and a lasting price, one that none of us wants to face.

...

Because we need to recognize the desperate situation of our condition, not only in the natural but also in the supernatural. Because as the scripture was read from the pulpit at Margaret Thatcher’s funeral, we fight not against this world, we fight against the powers and principalities and 'Prince of the Air,' that’s where we need to focus as well, is on spiritual warfare…

Bob Vander Plaats Really Should Stop Talking About Slavery

Two years ago, the Iowa Religious Right group The Family Leader caused a bit of a stir when it convinced Republican presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Michelle Bachmann to sign a “marriage pledge” that, among other questionable provisions, stated that African-American families were better off under slavery than they are today.

Just a few months later, all the major Republican presidential candidates save Mitt Romney participated in a “Thanksgiving Family Forum” hosted by the group.

And apparently the Family Leader’s president Bob Vander Plaats hasn’t learned much from the “marriage pledge” episode. In an interview today with Business Week about Sen. Rand Paul’s chances with social conservatives, Vander Plaats says Paul’s “leave it to the states” position on marriage equality is unacceptable because gay marriage, like slavery, is something “you don’t leave up to the states.”

Vander Plaats said Iowans may tolerate Paul’s comments on abortion exceptions because he’s also authored a bill that would define life as beginning at conception. His views on same-sex marriage are another matter.

“We are definitely going to have visits with Rand on some of those things,” said Vander Plaats, who disagrees with Paul’s view that the legal status of same-sex marriage, like drug crimes, should be left up to the states.

“You don’t leave slavery up to the states, nor should you,” said Vander Plaats. “It’s either right or it’s wrong.”

Buchanan Calls for Renewed Southern Strategy, This Time Against Immigrants

The mainstream media’s favorite racist commentator, Pat Buchanan, is predictably upset by a Census report this week that in last year’s election, black voters turned out at higher rates than white voters for the first time in history.

In a WorldNetDaily column yesterday, Buchanan laments the fact that African Americans, Hispanics and Asian Americans voted overwhelmingly for Obama in 2012 and that even more people of color are immigrating to the United States.

His solution, of course, is not for the GOP to try to appeal to non-white voters. Instead, he suggests that Republicans focus exclusively on turning out white voters by re-implementing what he sarcastically calls the “evil Southern Strategy” that helped catapult Richard Nixon to office. Buchanan implies that this time around, instead of stirring up racial resentment against black Americans, Republicans should work to pit white voters against “illegal foreign aliens."

“Is the way to increase the enthusiasm and turnout among [white voters] for the GOP to embrace amnesty and a path to citizenship for 12 million illegal foreign aliens?” he asks. “Or is it to demand the sealing of America’s borders against any and all intruders?”


Who are these folks? Perhaps half are Hispanic, but 90 percent are people of color who, once registered, vote 4-to-1 Democratic. One would not be surprised to hear that the Senate Democratic Caucus had broken out into chants of “Go, Marco, Go!”

Who are these folks? Perhaps half are Hispanic, but 90 percent are people of color who, once registered, vote 4-to-1 Democratic. One would not be surprised to hear that the Senate Democratic Caucus had broken out into chants of “Go, Marco, Go!"

Setting aside the illegals invasion Bush 41 and Bush 43 refused to halt, each year a million new immigrants enter and move onto a fast track to citizenship. Between 80 and 90 percent now come from the Third World, and once naturalized, they vote 80 percent Democratic.
This brings us back around to the Electoral College.

After Richard Nixon cobbled together his New Majority, the GOP carried 49 states in 1972 and 1984, 44 states in 1980 and 40 in 1988. In four elections – 1972, 1984, 1988 and 2004 – the Republican Party swept all 11 states of FDR’s “Solid South.”
Such were the fruits of that evil Southern Strategy.

But when conservatives urged Bush 1 to declare a moratorium on legal immigration in 1992 and build a security fence, the politically correct Republican establishment fought tooth and nail to keep the idea out of the platform.


From these Census figures, white folks are losing interest in politics and voting. Yet, whites still constitute three-fourths of the electorate and nine in 10 Republican votes.

Query: Is the way to increase the enthusiasm and turnout among this three-fourths of the electorate for the GOP to embrace amnesty and a path to citizenship for 12 million illegal foreign aliens?

Or is it to demand the sealing of America’s borders against any and all intruders?

Just asking.
 

 

Heritage Foundation VP Blamed Boston Bombings on 'Multiculturalism and Diversity' in Schools

Mike Gonzalez, the Heritage Foundation’s vice president of communications, has had a rough week. He was tasked with defending a Heritage report about the economic impact of immigration reform that was statistically faulty, co-authored by a white supremacist and bashed by other conservatives.

The controversy over the report, however, has overshadowed an op-ed that Gonzalez wrote for the Denver Post last week that pins at least some of the blame for the Boston Marathon bombings on what he sees as a new trend in American schools of teaching “multiculturalism and diversity” rather than “love of country.”

But we know one thing for sure: He wasn't taught that assimilation into American society was desirable. As I'm finding while researching a book on Hispanics — indeed, what I experienced as a young Cuban coming to this country in the early 1970s — we no longer teach patriotic assimilation. By that I mean love of country, not just its creature comforts.

We teach the opposite, in fact — that we're all groups living cheek by jowl with one another, all with different advantages and legal class protection statuses, but not really all part of the same national fabric. In other words, we teach multiculturalism and diversity, and are officially making assimilation very hard to achieve.

If Dzhokhar and his brother Tamarlan are guilty of the acts of terrorism they are accused of because they succumbed to Islamist radicalism, then they are monsters who are personally responsible for turning against the land that welcomed them. Tamarlan has paid with his life, and Dzhokhar will be dealt judgment.

But as we grapple now with the thorny question of immigration, how to handle the millions of people who started to arrive at mid-century in a massive immigration wave, we could do worse than look at the affairs in Boston for a clue on whether our current approach works.

Over the past few days, many people pondering the question of how the Tsarnaevs could have acted the way they did have discounted that lack of assimilation could be the case, emphasizing that the brothers Tsarnaev lived in Cambridge, "one of the most diverse and inclusive places in America."

The problem is indeed with an "inclusive" approach that considers it wrong to teach love of a country so generous that it takes in two foreigners from a far-away land, gives them refuge, welcomes them in and gives them a free education. To have done so might have precluded the radical brain washing that led to the bombing.

This absurd argument is basically the one put forward last week by Center for Immigration Studies executive director Mark Krikorian.

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Bradlee Dean: Public Schools Evil, Obama Emulating Mao

Right-wing rock musician and radio host Bradlee Dean, a Michele Bachmann ally, was part of a panel on the Millennial generation at Liberty Counsel’s recent Awakening conference. Dean’s You Can Run But You Can’t Hide ministry, designated an anti-gay hate group last year by the Southern Poverty Law Center, works to bring Dean’s right-wing-values presentations into public schools.

Dean – who has suggested that the federal government was behind the shootings in Sandy Hook, Aurora Springs, and Columbine, along with the Oklahoma City bombing and 9-11 – not surprisingly pushed conspiracy theories about public education, including the notion that the rigorous International Baccalaureate program is part of a global scheme to disarm Americans and indoctrinate students in a homosexual agenda.

During the Awakening panel, Dean ranted that public school students know nothing about the Constitution and said that Christian parents have no excuse for having their children in public schools. He cited the Common Core, a curriculum standard developed by state education officials, as evidence that President Obama is acting like Mao Tse-Tung. He said Supreme Court rulings on church-state issues had opened the door to Satanism.   Some excerpts:

“In 1962, said we don’t want prayer, and we don’t want the Ten Commandments in 1980, guess what you did, you just opened the door to Satanism, and call it for what it is....

You can’t justify having your kid in a public school. You can’t. You can’t do it. [Other panelist: “Unless you hate ‘em”]. Unless you hate ‘em, that’s exactly right. No, guys, just hang on, there’s nothing funny about this. Here, let me tell you this, this is how funny it is, guys.  In public schools right now they’re teaching your kids, for those that didn’t know, International Baccalaureate. For those that didn’t know, it started in 1968 under a global educational scheme called International Baccalaureate. They’re teaching your kids to disarm, they’re teaching your kids to accept homosexuality, homosexual marriage, which has never been in the history of mankind. By the way, gay marriage and homosexuality? It’s only there to take away your sovereignty.  So for those that want to sit there and play games with the homosexual community, let me tell you something: they ain’t playing….

They’re teaching No Child Left Behind. Now they’re teaching something called Common Core. Folks, this president is emulating dictators. Do you not understand that he is not playing games? If you look at Mao Tse-tung, this boy is emulating Mao Tse-tung to a T. You know what Mao Tse-tung did, he went to the younger generation, he overthrew the Republic of China to implement what? Democracy. Who is the last president that actually acknowledged that we were a republic? Reagan. Every president since has continuously inundated the next generation with the fact that we are a democracy. That is dangerous, guys.”

Dean, who last year was ordered to pay attorney fees in an unsuccessful-to-date $50 million lawsuit against MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and the Minnesota Independent’s Andy Birkey, earlier this year threatened a defamation suit against Wonkette.

Vander Plaats 'Not Here to Judge' Openly Gay State Senator Who Might Not Be 'Practicing Gay'

WHO-TV in Des Moines featured a debate last week between openly gay Iowa State Senator Matt McCoy and anti-gay activist Bob Vander Plaats.

Both were fairly restrained, despite the best efforts of the moderator, who at one point asked Vander Plaats if McCoy, who lives in Des Moines with his partner, is “living a life that is not approved by God, in your mind?”

Vander Plaats responded that he was “not here to judge Sen. McCoy” because the senator might be like “some people that say, ‘Well, I’m gay, but I’m not practicing gay.'"

Later on, the conversation turned to the future of marriage equality. Vander Plaats brought up a question that Justice Sonia Sotomayor asked during oral arguments on the Prop 8 case, in which she prompted attorney Ted Olson to take down the right’s “slippery slope” argument that gay marriage will lead to legalized polygamy and incest. This question, Vander Plaats alleges, actually indicates that Justice Sotomayor would be ready to give legal backing to polygamists and “a dad who wants to marry his son or daughter.”

Vander Plaats added that, despite polls showing steadily increasing support for marriage equality, he believed that there would be a “reverse” of marriage equality “probably in our lifetime or in somebody else’s lifetime.”

 

 

Religious Right Panelists: Gay Rights Activists are Christ-Hating Fascists

At Liberty Counsel’s recent Awakening conference, gays were portrayed as enemies of religious freedom who are bent on turning public schools into indoctrination centers using the issue of bullying as a “Trojan horse.”  Greg Quinlan, president of Parents and Friends of ExGays and Gays, who describes himself as ex-gay, complained that New Jersey’s new anti-bullying law is being used to bully Christian students, and hollered that the law is actually fascism.

You don’t need a law, inculcated and put into code, to talk about bullying. What this bully bill is is behavior modification. That’s the job of the parents and the teachers and we don’t need that put into law. This is fascism! This is fascism! We need to put a swastika on it!

Quinlan complained that public officials, including Gov. Chris Christie, would not listen to Religious Right objections to the bill because gay rights advocates had exploited the suicide of a bullied boy:

Because one boy -- and the homosexual agenda is extremely good at this, when there’s a disaster -- one boy jumps off the George Washington Bridge, kills himself in the Hudson River. And they seized that moment and they took it and used it to their advantage. And what did we do? We said “Oh, that’s terrible that that happened,” but we don’t have any statements to make when these issues do happen. This is where we have to have better messaging.

Matt Barber, one of the most ferociously anti-gay voices in public life, used a question about the treatment of an anti-gay protestor to charge that gays are motivated by hatred for Jesus Christ and that the “homosexual lifestyle” is a sin-condemned “culture of death.”

The question was, an elderly woman was at a homosexual rally and she was carrying this big styrofoam cross and she was knocked around, it was caught on film, no charges were filed, they took her cross, and stomped it, and crushed into tiny bits. That is a microcosm of what we’re up here – and I thought, something that immediately occurred to me was, wasn’t that a metaphor for what we’re up against. It’s about the cross. It’s about the cross and a hatred of Christ, who is what? The way, the truth, and the life.  They hate the way, which is Christ, they hate the truth, which they are in conflict with, and they hate life. This is a culture of death we are talking about here, and the wages of sin is what? Is death. The homosexual lifestyle astronomically, from a statistical standpoint, leads to death. The wages of sin is death.

Other speakers on the panel were Rena Lindevaldsen, a Liberty University law professor and associate dean, and Cynthia Dunbar, a Religious Right activist who served on the Texas state board of education and who is now also a law professor at Liberty. Dunbar bragged in her conference bio that her work has earned her a “position” on Right Wing Watch.

Will Mark Sanford Listen to Mark Sanford's Lesson in Grace?

"I am one imperfect man saved by God's grace," Mark Sanford proclaimed yesterday as he declared victory in a special election for South Carolina's open House seat. "Until you experience human grace as a reflection of God's grace, I don't think you really get it," he said. "And I didn't get it before."

Sanford's victory wasn't a big surprise. He won as a Republican in a district that favored Mitt Romney by 18 points last year.

What would be a surprise, and what I would love to see, is if Sanford applied his new personal understanding of "human grace as a reflection of God's grace" to his new role in government.

He could, for instance, apply some of that grace to women facing often wrenching decisions about abortion, allowing them to make their own decisions rather than pre-judging them with burdensome regulations designed to humiliate them and severely restrict their choices.

He could apply some of that grace to gay and lesbian couples,who, like him, are simply trying to share their lives openly with the one they love. While many public figures have "evolved" on gay rights without even having to be "saved by grace," Mark Sanford just recently reminded us that he hasn't moved an inch.

He could perhaps share some grace with his fellow Americans who are struggling to raise children while working multiple low-paying jobs. Maybe with his newfound empathy, he will understand that pre-K education, health care and food assistance can help those struggling to get by keep themselves afloat in an unforgiving economy.

Maybe he will have some grace left over for undocumented immigrants who are trying to support their families and give back to the country they call home.

Perhaps he could convince his party, which claims to be in the market for a makeover, that a little grace and understanding would do it some good.

Maybe this will happen. But it seems more likely that Sanford's idea of grace, choice and personal freedom apply exclusively to people like him.

This post originally appeared at the Huffington Post.

PFAW

Pat Buchanan Claims Immigration Reform, Latino Voting Will Lead to 'Erasure of the Southern Border'

Conservative commentator Pat Buchanan has been one of the Right’s most reliably xenophobic voices against immigration reform. On Friday’s McLaughlin Group, Buchanan was at it again, claiming that immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants would  “lead to the erasure of the southern border of the United States” and the creation of an “entirely different U.S.A.” because of increased Latino voting in border states.

“Let me tell you, if you get amnesty and the path to citizenship that the Mexican president wants, that will lead to the erasure of the southern border of the United States, because the Hispanic population in all those border states is going to be decisive in elections and they will begin to demand that to people, shut up about immigration and let it come forward, and when that happens you’re going to have an entirely different U.S.A.,” he said.
 

King: Obama's Mexico Trip Will 'Undermine National Sovereignty and Rule of Law'

President Obama is traveling to Mexico this week to advocate for increased trade ties and cooperation on border enforcement with Mexico in advance of his push for comprehensive immigration reform. But in an interview with Steve Malzberg yesterday, Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King said that Obama is actually in Mexico to “undermine national sovereignty and rule of law” by delivering a “greeting card” to Mexican nationals previously deported from the United States and telling them to “come back and try again.”

King was referring to a provision of the Senate bipartisan immigration reform proposal that would allow some people previously deported for non-criminal reasons to reapply for U.S. residency. Going further, he called the president’s trip “completely outrageous” and accused Republican immigration reform supporters of being “complicit” in the president’s scheme.

King also falsely claimed the bill would provide “instantaneous amnesty” to undocumented immigrants currently in the United States.

Malzberg: Let me ask you, since there’s nobody more active on the immigration than you, and the president of course is in Mexico, and he’s going to give his, you know, his immigration presidential stump speech down in Mexico. To me, that is so inappropriate, it just reeks of inappropriateness. What can we anticipate in his campaign to, again, push for comprehensive immigration reform down in Mexico?

King: Oh my, you know, if you read the bill, the 834-page bill, I think what the president will be doing is already written into the bill. We know that it grants instantaneous amnesty to everybody that’s in the United States illegally, with some exceptions that perhaps will materialize due to law enforcement over time. But it also, in the bill, it invites everybody who has been deported in the past to reapply to come back into the United States, it says, ‘We didn’t mean it.’

So here’s the president down in Mexico, he’s the one that’s essentially carrying the greeting card. Presumably there are people in Mexico who have been deported, he’s down there as president saying, ‘We’re going to legalize everyone that’s in America and if you’ve been deported, come back and try again, we may be able to let you back into the United States.’ I think you’ll hear that from him. This is just, it’s completely outrageous to think that a president would undermine national sovereignty and rule of law that way, and not have the utter outrage of all of Congress lined up against him. And he doesn’t even have the utter outrage of all Republicans lined up against him, because some of them are complicit.

CIS Spokesman Lashes Out at 'Professional Ethnics,' Calls GOP Immigration Reform Supporters 'Useful Idiots'

The Center for Immigration Studies, a leading anti-immigrant group that was invited to testify at last month’s Senate immigration reform hearings, has been making it very clear why it opposes comprehensive reform. In an interview last week, CIS director Mark Krikorian said that Republicans shouldn’t bother courting Latino voters or “importing more of them” through immigration reform because “generally speaking, Hispanic voters are Democrats.”

In an interview yesterday with VCY America’s Jim Schneider, the group’s research director Steven Camarota, piled on, calling GOP supporters of immigration reform “useful idiots” who “have no idea of the political preferences of the people who they’re trying to turn into voters.” 

Schneider: I think it’s Politico, this week Monday, talked about this mega GOP donor, Paul Singer, making a six-figure donation to a group that’s involved with marshaling conservatives to support an overhaul of our federal laws on this issue. I mean, is there, it sounds like there’s tons of pressure that’s going on legislators at this time.

Camarota: Yeah, well, you know, what did Lenin, the leader of the Soviet revolution say, ‘There’s a lot of…the capitalist will sell you the rope to hang him.’ Well, you know, there’s just a…and he also talked about the concept of ‘useful idiots.’ These are people who help you inadvertently with your revolution. Well, that’s kind of a harsh statement but the reality is there are lots of conservatives who never actually looked at the voting data, who have no idea of the political preferences of the people who they’re trying to turn into voters.

And so, when you press them on this, a lot of times they’ll say, well, ‘I didn’t know,’ or, ‘We’ll fix that, somehow we’ll change their minds,’ as if they were malleable piece of clay and not human beings entitled to their own opinions. The fact is that if immigration continues, the United States will continue to move in a more left or progressive direction. That’s not necessarily bad or good, but it is a fact, because the new immigrants and their children, based on all the polling that we have, tend to favor expansive government. Again, in a democracy, you change the voters, the political system has to respond. That’s just the reality of the situation.

Elsewhere in the interview, Camarota went all out on the racial dog whistles, taking on Attorney General Eric Holder’s defense of the civil rights of immigrants and non-English speakers. “Unfortunately, there’s a whole industry designed to balkanize the country and remind people of their backgrounds and ethnicity and their race,” Camarota said. “And there’s a lot of what you might call ‘professional ethnics’ out there whose job it is to keep the country divided.” This "identity and grievance politics," he adds, is “one of the downsides of immigration in modern America.”

Schneider: He also used this term, ‘language minorities,’ and that sounded rather peculiar to me. Can you define, what is he meaning by ‘language minorities?’

Camarota: Well, this is something that’s evolved since the 1960s, not surprisingly, that if you don’t speak English you’re entitled to certain protections, including things like have voting ballots printed up in your language. Now, of course, a moment’s reflection reveals that basically that makes no sense. Because when you naturalize, when a legal immigrant becomes a full citizen of the United States, they have to display a knowledge of English, so they should be able to read English. And people born in the United States should also be able to have learned English. They lived here, they grew up here.

So who exactly are these foreign language battles for? Well, what it’s for is to preserve ethnic identity. And unfortunately, there’s a whole industry designed to balkanize the country and remind people of their backgrounds and ethnicity and their race. And there’s a lot of what you might call ‘professional ethnics’ out there whose job it is to keep the country divided, because if people assimilate, well, they have no one they can claim to represent. And that’s one of the downsides of immigration in modern America, identity and grievance politics.

 

Matt Barber Blames Bitter, Barren, Appletini-Sipping Copy Editors for Lack of Gosnell Coverage

In his most recent weekly column, Liberty Counsel vice president Matt Barber excoriates the media for supposedly ignoring the Kermit Gosnell trial, President Obama for speaking at Planned Parenthood, and progressives for supporting a “culture of death.”

Barber latches on to the completely false right-wing talking point that the mainstream media and feminist reporters have ignored the Gosnell trial. He blames this supposed blackout on people like “some now-barren, 40-something copy editor who’s had five abortions” and who’d rather “sip appletinis with the boys down at the National Press Club and pretend it never happened.”

Interestingly, until this week, Liberty Counsel hadn’t mentioned Gosnell once.

And why are we stunned that the mainstream media have spiked a story with all the bloody and salacious newsworthy trappings that – had abortion not been involved – would have filled the news cycle 24/7?

You think some now-barren, 40-something copy editor who’s had five abortions wants to draw attention to its grisly reality? You think she wants to be reminded of her own string of dismembered little choices? No, better to sip appletinis with the boys down at the National Press Club and pretend it never happened. Now that’s reproductive freedom! That’s freedom of the press!

Barber then moves on to President Obama’s recent speech to Planned Parenthood, or, as he calls it, “a mass-murder celebration.”

“Kermit Gosnell is liberalism personified, and liberalism relies on deceit,” he writes. “The ‘progressive’ culture is a culture of death.”

To “pro-choicers” it’s not that old Kermit did anything wrong; it’s just that he got caught doing it. He was careless. He pulled back the curtain of “reproductive freedom” to reveal abortion’s house of horrors. Kermit Gosnell is liberalism personified, and liberalism relies on deceit. The “progressive” culture is a culture of death. Moral relativism is as moral relativism does.

Speaking of moral relativism, on Friday the first sitting president in United States history gave the keynote address at a Planned Parenthood fundraiser. Nice timing. Even as the Gosnell mass-murder trial wraps up, Obama was lending the full weight of his presidency to a mass-murder celebration.

His message? All you Planned Parenthood-hating, anti-Gosnell right-wingers better listen up: “No matter how great the challenge, no matter how fierce the opposition, there’s one thing that the past few years have shown,” he promised. “That Planned Parenthood is not going anywhere. It’s not going anywhere today. It’s not going anywhere tomorrow.”

Yeah, we’ll see about that, slick.

PFAW President Michael Keegan to Jason Collins: ‘We Are With You’

This week, NBA center Jason Collins made history when he became the first active player in a major men’s pro sports league to come out as gay.  In an interview with George Stephanopoulos aired yesterday on Good Morning America, Collins reflected that “when you finally get to that point of acceptance, there’s nothing more beautiful.” Collins has demonstrated his commitment to being open about who he is – and in doing so, has become a role model to all who are struggling to accept themselves.

Today People For the American Way President Michael B. Keegan sent Collins a letter of congratulations and support:

Dear Jason,

Thank you. 

Becoming the first active player in a major men’s pro sports league to come out as gay could not have been an easy decision.  You said yourself that if you had your way, “someone else would have already done this” – but you were the one to take this step, and we’re grateful for your courage.

The majority of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender young people report experiencing harassment at school because of their sexual orientation or gender identity and the need for supportive LGBT role models has never been greater.  At this moment, no one can know the full effects of your decision to come out, but what I do know is that it will change the lives of so many others who are struggling to accept who they are.

On behalf of People For the American Way’s staff, board, and members all across the country, congratulations.  We are with you. 

With best regards,

Michael B. Keegan
President, People For the American Way

 

PFAW

Buchanan Calls For 'Moratorium on Immigration from the Islamic World'

In a syndicated column Friday, conservative commentator and former Republican presidential adviser Pat Buchanan called for a “moratorium on immigration from the Islamic world” in response to the Boston bombings. Calling the bombings “the dark side of diversity,” Buchanan asks, “Why are we bringing all of the world's quarrelsome minorities, and all the world's quarrels with them, into our home?”

Buchanan’s call to ban immigration from entire swaths of the world is nothing new. In a 2011 interview with the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer, Buchanan agreed with Fischer that the U.S. should ban Muslim immigrants and the construction of mosques.

Buchanan has also claimed that Mexican immigrants are causing the “death of the West” and staging “an immigrant invasion of the United States from the Third World.”

And while the Islamic world remains far inferior in technology and manufacturing and military power, Muslim peoples are far more numerous and devout. With a fourth of mankind, their birth rate is higher and their numbers soaring, along with their militancy at home and in the diaspora.

In population and territory, the West is shrinking, while our Muslim minorities are growing and becoming more assertive in their demands.

"No army can withstand the strength of an idea whose time has come," said Victor Hugo. Many in the Muslim world believe that as the Christian West dominated for 500 years, their time has come.

How do we deal with this irreconcilable conflict between a secular West and a resurgent Islam?

First, as it is our presence in their world that enrages so many, we should end our interventions, shut down the empire and let Muslim rulers deal with Muslim radicals.

Second, we need a moratorium on immigration from the Islamic world. Inevitably, some of the young we bring in, like the Tsarnaevs, will yield to radicalization and seek to strike a blow for Islam against us.

What benefit do we derive as a people to justify the risks we take by opening up America to mass migration from a world aflame with hatred and hostility over race, ethnicity, culture, history and faith?

Why are we bringing all of the world's quarrelsome minorities, and all the world's quarrels with them, into our home?

What we saw in Boston was the dark side of diversity.

Eagle Forum Assures Us That Bible's Mandate for 'Compassion' Does Not Include Immigrants

Eagle Forum wants its members to know that the Christian conservative groups backing comprehensive immigration reform are reading their Bibles wrong. In an email to members today, Phyllis Schlafly’s group states in bold print, “Scripture is clear on many things, but a sovereign nation’s immigration policy is not one of them. There is no biblical mandate for mass Amnesty for illegal aliens.”

Biblical prescriptions for “kindness and compassion to ‘strangers’ or ‘sojourners’” are meant only for people who are “in a foreign land temporarily,” the group clarifies. In addition, this is “not a command to the government.”

The email goes on to assure readers that “it is not racist, isolationist, nativist, or xenophobic” to oppose immigration reform.

Scripture is clear on many things, but a sovereign nation’s immigration policy is not one of them.

There is no biblical mandate for mass Amnesty for illegal aliens. Make no mistake, the current Senate proposal allows all illegal aliens to come forward to receive “Registered Provisional Immigrant” (RPI) legal status within six months after President Obama signs the bill. That is Amnesty. 

Scripture clearly commands individuals and the Body of Christ to show kindness and compassion to “strangers” or “sojourners,” terms that imply a person is in a foreign land temporarily.  However, that is not a command to the government. Government is charged with protecting its own citizens and administering justice so its citizens remain free to exercise compassion and generosity.

America was founded on Judeo-Christian principles. The individual exercise of compassion and generosity are an integral part of the American dream. In order to protect the American Dream for everyone who seeks it, we must implement sound policy. Amnesty is not sound policy.

We are saddened that people of strong faith have been called nasty names (racist, isolationist, nativist, and xenophobic) for demanding that our government institute policies that keep us safe, protect jobs for law-abiding citizens and immigrants, stop adding pressure to an already crumbling economy, and stop adding dependents to a welfare system which is already unable to keep the promises already made. 

It is not racist, isolationist, nativist, or xenophobic to demand the rule of law and to demand that government obey the immigration laws that have already been passed. 

Krikorian Says GOP Shouldn't Bother Courting Hispanic Voters or 'Importing More of Them'

Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies and a prominent voice on the anti-immigrant Right, argued yesterday that the Republican Party shouldn’t bother courting Hispanic voters because their “illegitimate” children, “high rates of welfare use,” and opposition to “reducing the size of government” make them an “an overwhelmingly Democratic voter group.”

Krikorian is one of the most prominent figures in the effort to stop comprehensive immigration reform. He was invited to be a GOP witness at a Senate hearing on immigration reform earlier this month, where he said the bill in question could be called “No Illegal Alien Left Behind.”

Speaking with New Orleans radio talk show host Garland Robinette yesterday, Krikorian dismissed the idea that the Republican Party needs to work to attract Latino voters, including through efforts at immigration reform. The Republican share of Latino voters “is never going to be very big,” he said. “Generally speaking, Hispanic voters are Democrats, and so the idea of importing more of them as a solution to the Republican Party’s problems is kind of silly.”

Robinette: I’ve been told by pretty conservative friends that, well, you don’t have to worry about the president changing it or Congress changing it because the Republicans are going to need this Hispanic vote even more than the Democrats do. Is that a valid argument, that if passed, it will survive the ten years?

Krikorian: No, I mean, well, in a sense, if, for those people who think that chasing after the Hispanic vote is an important goal for the Republicans, that’s actually an argument for saying that various requirements in the bill will not survive ten years, that they’ll start watering them down as soon as the ink is dry.

But I would even challenge the premise. I mean, Republicans obviously need to go after any voter group, and there’s a significant minority of Hispanic Americans who will vote Republican, and that number can be increased and Republicans should work on increasing it. But it’s never going to be very big. Hispanics as a whole are the biggest supporters of Obamacare, are big supporters of gun control, are opposed to reducing the size of government. Native-born Hispanic Americans, who make up most Hispanic voters, have a majority of the children that are born to them are illegitimate, very high rates of welfare use. So this is a description of an overwhelmingly Democratic voter group. Not all of them, obviously, because there’s a big group and there’s a lot of differences among them. But generally speaking, Hispanic voters are Democrats, and so the idea of importing more of them as a solution to the Republican Party’s problems is kind of silly.
 

 

Schlafly Wonders Why Immigration Officials Didn’t Check if Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Was Lying in his Citizenship Oath

Phyllis Schlafly has been on a tear after the Boston Marathon bombings, using the tragedy to call for the reinstatement of the House Un-American Activities Committee and a hold on comprehensive immigration reform.

In a syndicated column today, the Eagle Forum founder seizes on a report that some of the bombing suspects’ family members – all legal immigrants – received occasional welfare and food stamp assistance. “Tamerlan [Tsarnaev] can be said to have financed his radicalization with welfare handouts from our taxpayers,” she charges. She is also shocked that Tamerlan received a court-appointed attorney when he was charged with domestic violence in 2009.

Later in the column, Schlafly demands to know what immigration officials did when Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was taking his citizenship oath “to assure that Dzhokhar was not using the Koran-authorized practice of taqiyya, i.e., tell a lie in order to advance Muslim objectives.” Officials should have been tipped off, she says, by the first name of his older brother, which is common in Central Asia.

Once admitted into the United States, the entire family cashed in on generous U.S. welfare benefits, cash and food stamps. Those receiving taxpayer handouts included the two criminal sons, both of their parents and, ultimately, Tamerlan's wife and child.

Tamerlan can be said to have financed his radicalization with welfare handouts from our taxpayers. Those were the years when Tamerlan became a more devout Muslim, gave up drinking in order to devote himself to "God's business" and sought out jihadist websites.

When accused of domestic violence against a girlfriend in 2009, he had the benefit of a taxpayer-funded attorney to get his case dismissed. Welfare was terminated only in 2012 when his wife's salary pushed their income outside of eligibility limits.

When the younger brother, Dzhokhar, was naturalized as a citizen. He would have been required to swear that he renounces "all allegiance" to any previous country and that "I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion." What did our naturalization bureaucrats do to assure that Dzhokhar was not using the Koran-authorized practice of taqiyya, i.e., tell a lie in order to advance Muslim objectives?

Why didn't our FBI recognize the signal that the older boy was named for one of the most brutal murderers in all history? The name Tamerlan is known throughout Asia as a 14th-century Muslim who called himself the "Sword of Islam" and murdered 17 million people, beheaded many and displayed their heads to showcase his brutality.

Schlafly: Immigration Reform 'Suicide' for GOP Because Immigrants Want a 'Handout'

Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly dropped by the Steve Malzberg Show on NewsMax TV recently to discuss the bipartisan Gang of Eight’s efforts on comprehensive immigration reform. Schlafly told Malzberg that creating a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants would be “suicide for the Republican Party because they’re going to vote Democratic.” Schlafly predicts that immigrants will vote for Democrats “because they come from a country where there’s no tradition or expectation of limited government” and “think government should be there to give orders and solve their problems and give them a handout when they need it.”

Having this amnesty is suicide for the Republican Party because they’re going to vote Democratic, and that’s why the Democrats are pushing it. And the reason is because they come from a country where there’s no tradition or expectation of limited government. You know, you and I want the Constitution obeyed and we want limited government to get it off our back so that we can be a free country. But other countries don’t even have the experience. They don’t know what you’re talking about. They think government should be there to give orders and solve their problems and give them a handout when they need it.

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