Among the speakers at the World Congress of Families on Thursday was Mark Tooley of the Institute on Religion and Democracy (IRD), who declared that too many Christians are being influenced by secular ideology and are clueless that God himself has ordered government to fight same-sex marriage and access to abortion.
Tooley’s group supports conservatives within mainline Protestant churches (he is a United Methodist) by attacking liberal elements within those denominations that promote progressive theology and public policy. For example, IRD has criticized the U.S. State Department for promoting the human rights of LGBT people and spoken out against evangelicals backing immigration reform.
At the World Congress of Families, Tooley decried the embrace of LGBT equality and reproductive choice among “once great” mainline denominations, and warned that the “errors” of mainline Protestantism have spread to evangelical and Catholic communities.
The problems that had originated in America’s mainline Protestant world unfortunately have spread and metastasized throughout American religion, and even once great and strongly orthodox religious institutions in America are now affected by these issues and are compromised on core topics related to marriage and family and the sanctity of all human life.
He blamed the shift on the institutions’ “elites and bureaucracies,” which he said no longer believe in ancient Christian teachings but have “actively joined secularism to advocate deconstruction of marriage and family.” Those ideas have spread to other Christian institutions, he complained, including the “evangelical left” and Christian colleges, whose leaders don’t want to engage on these issues because they believe it would interfere with evangelization.
Tooley complained that there weren’t enough Christian leaders defending Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who was jailed for six days after she refused to abide by a federal court order to provide marriage licenses to same-sex couples after the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling. Tooley predicted that more people will be intimidated into “virtual silence” as the government punishes other marriage resisters, but he hoped the opposite might also be true, and that the accumulating impact of those cases might inspire others to take a more public stand.
Tooley said that organized Christian political social justice advocacy aimed at young people has focused more on admirable but less controversial issues like fighting sex trafficking or carrying out humanitarian work. He complained that too many young Christians see marriage as passé as a public policy issue and religious liberty work as self-serving— and even think that work on abortion is too focused on therapeutic ministry rather than political advocacy to put abortion bans into law.
Tooley connected this to Christians’ lack of understanding that God himself has given the government a divine mandate to oppose marriage equality and abortion.
Indeed, all of the punitive aspects of the civil state, which are central to God’s vocation for government, have become unfashionable or at least uninteresting to much of Christian political witness in America today — except for possibly punishing perpetrators of discrimination against same-sex couples.
Yet historic Christian teaching says the state has a divinely ordained, ongoing permanent duty to uphold marriage, family, and to protect all human life, irrespective of fashion and fad.
There is a pervasive lack of awareness in current Christian discourse, not limited to the very young, about historic Christian understandings about the core responsibilities of government. Instead of providing for public order — jailing criminals and deterring or defeating external aggressors — government is now portrayed in Christian political witness as the all-powerful and maternal provider, who feeds, clothes, heals, educates and reaffirms, callings that Christianity typically had assigned to parents, families, churches, private philanthropy, civil society and therapists.
Even traditional Christians, he complained, often appear clueless about religious responses to these trends, resorting to libertarian arguments against big government “without describing the state’s core mandate assigned by no less than God himself. Addressing this collapse in Christian understanding about God’s purpose for the state is a wonderful, and important, but almost overwhelming challenge for groups like mine, but also all of us in this room and beyond.”
Tooley closed with a prayer for victory in the culture war:
We can hope and pray, in the fullness of Providence, that the Almighty will look back on these days that we’re living through and say to us who have tried to follow him, this was one of our finest hours, in a great social and cultural storm when his truths were most under assault. May he guide us to perseverance and victories ahead for the common good of all people.
Allan Carlson, the founder of the World Congress of Families, spoke yesterday with the American Family Radio’s Sandy Rios, who was broadcasting live from the event, which is being held in Salt Lake City this year.
Carlson, who retired earlier this year from WCF’s parent organization, the Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society, was feeling reflective about his decades-long effort to fight the “sexual left” throughout the world.
“Family questions, family issues today, including same-sex marriage, abortion, the retreat from marriage more broadly, those have become international issues,” he told Rios. “It’s a situation, a set of problems found around the globe. And even in third-world countries, they’re facing an aggressive effort by the European Union and now the United States government to abandon their attachment to traditional marriage, to large families, and to embrace [what] we’ll call the Western sexual revolution.”
Rios recalled attending the United Nations Conference On Women in Beijing in 1996 and being shocked to find a “tent on lesbian love-making” and people who were saying that there are “five genders,” and being even more shocked that these things are now in “mainstream thought.”
“Well, you could see it coming,” Carlson said. “It plays on human weaknesses. It tells people that’ve made bad choices that they made good choices. It tells people that they may have hurt their children with bad choices but, no, it’s okay, you’re free, you’re open. So I always knew that there was some very diabolical message that preyed on the human heart here. So I’m not surprised it’s grown. What is an encouraging thing is that opposition has now risen up to it, to this false message of human liberation. And that’s what this event is about, and it’s just one example of hundreds, of thousands of events that are happening and I think are going to grow.”
Carlson also reflected with surprise that Russia — which under the leadership of President Vladimir Putin has been staging a crackdown on its LGBT citizens and has been a leader in opposing protection for LGBT people and reproductive rights at the UN — “has become a very strong pro-family voice at the United Nations.”
“That’s an astonishing development,” he said. “And one of the reasons the Obama administration is so hostile to Russia today, I’m quite sure, it’s not just the Crimea, it’s also the fact that Russia has become a proponent — at least at the official level — of pro-family sentiments.”
“It is amazing,” Rios agreed. “And one of the strongest supporters of Israel. The whole world, really, in our lifetime has turned upside down, don’t you think, Allan?”
Kevin Swanson, the Colorado pastor who is hosting fellow death-penalty-for-gays advocates and at least three Republican presidential candidates at his National Religious Liberties Conference in Des Moines, Iowa, next week, believes that everywhere he turns, someone is trying to turn his daughter into a lesbian: the Girl Scouts, Disney movies like “Frozen” and, of course, feminists.
On his “Generations Radio” program back in July, Swanson also pointed to another lesbian-recruiting culprit: the U.S. women’s national soccer team.
He was despondent about the number of lesbian players on the U.S. team and was even more despondent that Republican presidential candidates were congratulating the team for winning the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. Their victory, Swanson lamented, “was celebrated, of course, by one of the lesbian players doing her lesbian thing with her lesbian whatever.” He said that “those of us who stand against lesbianism” may have to “take a stand against the team itself and what the team has accomplished.”
Declaring that the U.S. has transformed into Sodom, Swanson said that God was likely offended by the World Cup team’s celebration, which he said is paving the way for divine wrath against America. Swanson went on to once again praise nations like Uganda and Kenya for upholding laws criminalizing homosexuality, explaining that, in contrast, America is on the wrong side of God on the issue of homosexuality.
“It’s everywhere today,” he said. “Our Christian children are running into homosexuals right and left. They live in our neighborhoods.”
As Swanson explained, lesbians in women’s sports seek to become role models for children in order to “indoctrinate” them into homosexuality.
“What do you do when there’s a fairly close association between lesbianism and sports?” Swanson asked listeners, reminding them that “the only way in which homosexuals reproduce is by way of the schools” and by ensuring that kids are “indoctrinated when they’re four, five, six, seven years of age, they need to be prepared to become those homosexuals that homosexuals want them to become.”
He continued: “The best way in which homosexuals reproduce is by way of the public schools and so there will be a full-court press towards bringing these lesbians into the coaching, into the schools, into the classrooms.”
After grieving that most young Christians are befriending gay people, Swanson told parents that they should “not give them role models, as in lesbian coaches, homosexual coaches, who would represent something of an abominable lifestyle and yet to try serve as a role model for our kids. Friends, I’m warning you, be very, very careful with this whole problem of homosexuality and lesbianism within the public schools today, and it’s only going to increase exponentially in the years to come.”
David Barton, one of the Religious Right's most relentless promoters of dishonest and misleading information, appeared on Glenn Beck's television program last night, where the two discussed the importance of teaching people not "what to think," but rather "how to think." Teaching people "how to think," Barton said, would pay huge dividends for America by giving conservatives confidence to speak up on the issues of the day.
"Self-identified conservatives outnumber self-identified liberals in nearly every state," Barton said, claiming that conservatives are reluctant to speak up on current events because they are afraid that they do not have enough knowledge or information, whereas liberals simply don't care that they are clueless and are just willing to lie.
"Why is it that conservatives are convinced that they are in the minority?" Barton asked. "In reality, we're not, but we think we are ... According to statistics, when you look at the groups of liberals, and moderates and conservatives, conservatives are by far the most silent of those three groups. They're least likely to speak up, and why is that? It's because conservatives don't want to speak until they feel like they've mastered the facts about whatever the subject is that is under discussion. Now, liberals or moderates, they're happy to give you their opinion and tell you what they think, regardless of whether they know the facts. But conservatives don't like doing that, they want to know the facts before they answer what are often wild and baseless claims made by liberals and moderates."
The defenders of Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who attempted to block her office from issuing marriage licenses after the Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, have retroactively been claiming that Davis was simply seeking a religious accommodation that would keep her name off such licenses. (This is despite the fact that Davis claimed that she was acting as an agent of God in keeping gay couples in her county from getting married.)
In an interview with Alaska conservative radio host Joe Miller this week, prominent Christian Reconstructionist John Eidsmoe, who now works for the foundation established by Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, argued that if Davis were to resign from her position or seek a religious accommodation to avoid being involved in gay marriages, that wouldn’t be enough. Instead, Eidsmoe said, lower courts and elected officials like Davis must “interpose” to “nullify” the marriage equality decision, which was made by a Supreme Court that has “become disobedient against God.”
Miller, who was Alaska’s Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in 2010, agreed, adding that if officials like Davis resign, they are “basically clearing the field” for “additional persecutorial-type behavior by government.”
Tellingly, both Eidsmoe and Miller will be attending next week’s “National Religious Liberties Conference” in Iowa, whose organizer’s idea of religious liberty is the liberty of conservative Christians to execute gay people. (Republican presidential candidates Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal are also scheduled to speak at the conference.)
Absolutely. In fact, there are many who say that what she should have done in those circumstances is simply resign her position in protest. I would say that if she had resigned, likewise, if Chief Justice Moore had resigned from the Supreme Court over the Ten Commandments issue, they would be betraying the people that elected them. Under the doctrine of lesser magistrates, or interposition, as you sometimes call it, when a higher magistrate, like the U.S. Supreme Court or a federal judge, begins to act in an extralegal and tyrannical manner, it is the duty of lesser magistrates like state courts and state judges, county clerks and the like to interpose, that is to stand between the people they represent against the tyranny of the higher magistrate.
You might say that if the higher magistrate has become disobedient against God, for the lower magistrate to simply follow what the higher magistrate says would make the lower magistrate complicit in this act of disobedience. I think she has a duty to stay on and a duty to resist. What they’re trying to do in that case right now, of course, is they’re trying to work out an accommodation where we could say that the law has a duty to accommodate those who have religious objections. That’s fine in so far as it goes, but it doesn’t go far enough. Rather, they need to recognize that this whole decision is illegitimate and it needs to be nullified.
On Wednesday, Michael Savage claimed that Barnes & Noble and other book stores are conspiring to suppress the release of his new book, “Government Zero,” claiming that he is a victim of a wider plot to quash his conservative beliefs.
“The left is sabotaging Michael Savage’s new book,” he said, pointing to photos a fan sent him of a Barnes & Noble store in Irvine, California, where his books are “on the floor.”
Savage said that the plot against his book goes all the way to the top, and is a precursor to violent persecution of conservatives:
What’s next? I’ll tell you what’s next. The outright banning of books which offend the government. The burning of books which offend the government. Brownshirts going into book stores and seizing books and burning them in huge piles. And who will cheer it on? Why, all of your progressive friends would cheer the burning of books. You know who they are. You know what they want. First they came for the books but you didn’t raise your voice because you don’t read such books. And then they came for the conservatives and they rounded them up, but you didn’t say anything because you didn’t really like the conservatives, you thought they were all mean anyway. And then they came for you, and there was no one left to stand up and speak for you. History has a weird way of repeating itself and it starts in very small ways, very small, wee steps fascism takes, it does.
UPDATE BELOW: McDurmon insists that he no longer believes in the views he espoused in this video.
Yesterday we reported that GOP presidential hopefuls Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal are all scheduled to speak at an upcoming "National Religious Liberties Conference" in Iowa next week that has been organized by far-right pastor Kevin Swanson, who has openly and repeatedly defended laws that impose the capital punishment on gay people.
Given that the chief organizer of this event holds such views, it should comes as no surprise to discover that several of the other scheduled speakers share similar views, in particular Phil Kayser, pastor of Dominion Covenant Church, and Joel McDurmon, president of the Christian Reconstructionist organization American Vision, which espouses the Christian Reconstructionist view that "men must choose in their civil affairs to be governed by God’s law" as explicitly set out in the Old Testament.
Kayser, who is scheduled to lead two workshops at the conference, was at the center of controversy back in 2011 when he endorsed Ron Paul for president and Paul's campaign proudly welcomed the endorsement only to try and cover it up once Kayser's extremist views on homosexuality became known, as Talking Points Memo reported at the time:
Paul's Iowa chair, Drew Ivers, recently touted the endorsement of Rev. Phillip G. Kayser, a pastor at the Dominion Covenant Church in Nebraska who also draws members from Iowa, putting out a press release praising "the enlightening statements he makes on how Ron Paul's approach to government is consistent with Christian beliefs." But Kayser's views on homosexuality go way beyond the bounds of typical anti-gay evangelical politics and into the violent fringe: he recently authored a paper arguing for criminalizing homosexuality and even advocated imposing the death penalty against offenders based on his reading of Biblical law ... Reached by phone, Kayser confirmed to TPM that he believed in reinstating Biblical punishments for homosexuals -- including the death penalty -- even if he didn't see much hope for it happening anytime soon.
Also speaking at the event is McDurmon, who recently took over as president of American Vision, and who likewise believes that "God revealed that the homosexual act is a civil crime, and it just so happens that He revealed that the homosexual act as a civil crime deserves the death penalty."
In fact, McDurmon's views are so extreme that, back in 2009, he criticized Uganda for not going far enough with its draconian anti-gay legislation, saying that if the nation was "going to go to Old Testament law ... they should also make the death penalty for adultery" and other Old Testament crimes as well.
But as he explained the time, Uganda was absolutely right to seek to put gays to death because "it is perfectly normal [and] it definitely should be in place [that] homosexuality should receive the death penalty":
So let us reiterate once again that, in 2015, three Republican presidential hopefuls — including a sitting senator, a sitting governor, and one former governor — are all scheduled to speak at an event organized by and featuring several speakers who openly advocate putting gay people to death.
UPDATE: McDurmon has released a statement insisting that his position is that "the Bible does not criminalize 'homosexuality,' but only the homosexual act of sodomy" and therefore he does not believe "that homosexuality in general should receive the death penalty; but rather that the Bible teaches that the 'act' of sodomy should receive such."
We'll leave it up to readers to determine whether or not this clarification makes his position any less extreme.
UPDATE 6/16: McDurmon has contacted us to request that we note that he has written a new book in which he explains why he no longer holds the views he espoused in the above video:
While there are, as I said, tons of Theonomy books already, there have always been some outstanding questions that I felt have never really been addressed directly—at least not to my satisfaction. In conjunction with my studies for the Worldview Study Bible (still forthcoming), I’ve had to tackle the toughest passages head-on. The theological framework that has developed from that study have led me to answer some of the outstanding questions as well as revise a few of my previously held views. I’ll give you the bottom line here, and you can read the exegesis and explanations in the book (and I assure you that you will be blessed by doing so):
Contrary to what usually been merely assumed, I do not believe civil government has authority to punish First Table offenses under the New Testament administration. While I was not completely settled on these questions before, I am now. The book explains why.
Contrary to my own previous views on sodomy and adultery, I do not believe the death penalty continues for these under the New Testament administration. This applies also to certain other forms of incest and sexual perversion punishable under the Old Covenant. I do not believe the civil government has any jurisdiction here and should be out of the marriage business altogether. The book explains why.
But yes, God’s law still continues in many ways, still binds modern governments in many ways, and yes, it does so in a glorious way that creates the only standard for a society of liberty. For example, murderers, rapists, and kidnappers ought to be executed; but the modern prison-industrial complex ought to be abolished.
Why the title? Simple: Jesus, Paul, Peter, and others all teach that love fulfills the law, and that if you wish to love, you will follow the law. Love is the law fulfilled, and the law is love exemplified. Love is not an emotion, it is a way of life. God’s law explains to us in various situations what the loving thing to do is. Thus, the law gives us the boundaries of what is love and what is not. The book explains both sides of this: love and law.
People For the American Way is calling on Republican presidential candidates Sen. Ted Cruz, Gov. Mike Huckabee and Gov. Bobby Jindal to withdraw from a conference in Iowa next month hosted by a far-right pastor who has defended capital punishment for homosexuality and who has blamed forest fires on women who wear pants.
People For the American Way’s Right Wing Watch has documented the long history of extreme anti-gay, anti-women rhetoric from Kevin Swanson, the Colorado activist and pastor who is organizing next month’s “National Religious Liberties Conference” in Des Moines, which event organizers say Cruz, Huckabee and Jindal are scheduled to attend.
“We already knew that the Republican Party opposed LGBT rights and women’s equality, but this is taking things to a new level,” said People For the American Way President Michael Keegan. “We can respectfully disagree on matters of public policy, but someone who supports gay people being put to death should have no place in our public discourse, much less be sharing the stage with a major party’s presidential candidates.”
“If Cruz, Huckabee and Jindal are serious about wanting to hold the nation’s highest office,” Keegan said, “they should back out of this conference and denounce the extremism of its organizer.”
Swanson’s wild extremism includes:
During last night’s GOP presidential debate, Ben Carson flatly denied having any relationship with a nutritional supplement company, Mannatech, that has been accused of deceptive marketing and come under fire for promoting quack treatments for cancer and autism, dismissing the charges as “total propaganda.”
“It is absolutely absurd to say that I had any kind of a relationship with them,” he said.
Carson has since told reporters that future debates should not include “gotcha questions” like the one about his involvement with Mannatech, stating: “There’s no truth to them. I know people know how to investigate. They can easily go back and find out I don’t have any formal relations with Mannatech. They can easily find out that any videos I did with them were not paid for, were things I truly believed. That would be easy to do. If they had another agenda, they could investigate and say — see, there’s nothing there! But if they have a gotcha agenda, they conveniently ignore all the facts and try to influence public opinion.”
Reporters did just that, and found clear evidence of Carson’s relationship with Mannatech. He delivered “four paid speeches at Mannatech gatherings” where he showered praises on the company's products and filmed a promotional video for the company, which is odd since Carson insisted during the debate that Mannatech had only had used his image “without my permission”:
Carson’s campaign, as PolitiFact points out, would prefer it if people did not find out about these ties: “Carson’s campaign requested that Mannatech remove some videos and articles featuring Carson from its website. And since media outlets have started poking around this question, Mannatech has taken down even more, according to reporters at the Wall Street Journal.”
His declarations that “I didn’t have an involvement with them” and “absurd to say that I had any kind of relationship with them” are just bald-faced lies.
Mannatech wanted to improve its image and happily paid Carson, one of the country’s greatest neurosurgeons, the man Cuba Gooding Jr. played in the HBO movie – to appear at their events and to appear in the company videos. They put his face all over their web site (sometime between my story and now, those images were taken down). Carson’s lack of due diligence before working with the company is forgivable. His blatant lying about it now is much harder to forgive.
The sun had barely risen in Salt Lake City yesterday when the first panel of “natural family” day at the World Congress of Families got started with a discussion about life after the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision.
Pastor Greg Johnson, an evangelical who was raised as a Mormon and now sponsors “convicted civility” dialogues between evangelicals and Mormons, recounted an experience with his daughter at the Creation Museum. Looking at the diorama of Adam and Even in the Garden of Eden, he was struck by the sacred nature of marriage. Johnson declared that the church needs to revive its commitment to the sacred and holy nature of marriage.
Cathy Ruse of the Family Research Council began her remarks with a declaration that, as a Catholic, there is nothing that could change her belief that marriage is between a man and a woman. Like many speakers, Ruse focused on the complementarity of men and women. “No man can be a mother,” she said. “As a mother, I know two fathers is not the same as a mother and a father.”
The fact that “men and women make babies, sometimes on purpose, sometimes by accident,” is the only reason government is involved in marriage, Ruse said. Government has to encourage men and women who become mothers and fathers to raise their children. The government has no interest in a person’s feelings, she said. “Who you love is not the government’s business, until now.” Of course, that claim ignores the historical fact that the U.S. government did, until quite recently, punish gay people for who they loved, denying them a livelihood and even taking away their children. And the fact is that many governments around the world, including in some countries represented at the World Congress, continue to do that and worse.
Ruse recounted all the states where voters banned marriage for same-sex couples, neglecting to mention the four more recent victories marriage equality advocates had at the ballot box in 2012. Ignoring those, and dismissing the huge and well-documented shifts in public opinion, Ruse portrayed marriage equality as something “a handful of liberal judges” forced “on the rest of us” and she called for continued resistance:
Above all, we must fight for the right to live and work according to our beliefs. Our enemy in this fight is not our neighbor, not even the 1.6 percent of our neighbors who identify themselves as gay. No. Our enemy are those who would be our masters — the judge who jails a clerk for failing to give her signature, the magistrate who takes the house of a baker for want of a cake. These are our enemies in the fight ahead. No government official can force us to bend the knee at the altar of a foreign god. If we cannot secure this freedom in law, then we must live it in civil disobedience of the law.
Brian Brown from the National Organization for Marriage followed Ruse and matched her tone of defiance against “our unelected masters.” The Supreme Court didn’t change the definition of marriage, he said, it “put a lie into the law” — just like slavery and the Dred Scott decision. Brown said that there’s no time for activists to be depressed. Citing the history of Christian martyrs, abolitionists and civil rights activists, he mocked people who don’t want to take a stand because some of their Facebook friends might say mean things about them.
“Instead of being depressed, we should savor the fact that we live at a point in history, like those times before, in which we can stand for the truth, make a difference, and God has put us here for some reason. This fight is not over. It has just begun.”
Brown proposed four goals for the anti-marriage-equality movement:
Rafael Cruz, speaking in the second morning session, picked up the baton with the kind of David Barton-inspired speech he gives on the campaign trail for his son Ted Cruz. America was founded on the word of God, he said, but its foundations have been undermined by communists, humanists and Supreme Court decisions on organized prayer, Bible reading in the public schools, abortion and marriage equality.
Cruz railed against the church for having been silent in the face of “abominable” Supreme Court decisions on church-state separation and abortion. The church he said has been “duped” into believing in the separation of church and state, and too many preachers are hiding behind their pulpits, scared to death of losing their tax exemptions. “God is going to judge us for our silence,” he said.
Cruz declared, “What we see in America right now is an outright attack on Christianity.” The court’s marriage equality decision declared homosexuality a civil right, he said, asserting (falsely) that “under that basis, it will be possible for some homosexual to come to your church demanding to be hired, whether as pastor or janitor is immaterial.” Cruz told a BuzzFeed reporter that the next item on the LGBT agenda will be pushing to legalize pedophilia.
The organizer of the “National Religious Liberties Conference” in Des Moines, Iowa, announced today that Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal have committed to speaking at the summit, which will take place next month. One speaker at the conference, Iowa radio host Steve Deace, has said that Ben Carson has also RSVP’d for the event, although Carson’s name was not included in today’s press release.
Kevin Swanson, the conference’s chief organizer, is a far-right pastor and host of the “Generations Radio” program, on which he has frequently claimed that the government should put gay people to death, warned that the Girl Scouts and the movie “Frozen” turn girls into lesbians and blamed natural disasters on gay people and women who wear pants. (Update: Swanson is not the only activist speaking at the conference who backs the death penalty for homosexuality).
We have documented Swanson’s radical record in great detail, including his tirades against William Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Abraham Lincoln, Desmond Tutu and Taylor Swift.
Swanson on homosexuality:
And there’s more!
Swanson on women:
Swanson on pop culture:
Swanson on other topics:
Glenn Beck dedicated a portion of his television program last night to the remainder of his one-on-one interview with Sen. Ted Cruz, in which the GOP presidential hopeful declared that those who believe in climate change do not bother to cite facts in support of their position because, for them, it is a religion.
Pointing to a recent congressional hearing in which he grilled the president of the Sierra Club about the supposed lack of data and evidence for the existence of global warming, Cruz told Beck that "climate change is not science, it's religion."
"Look at the language where they call you a 'denier,'" he said. "Denier is not the language of science. Look, I'm the child of two scientists ... The essence of the scientific method is to start with a hypothesis, then look to the evidence to disprove the hypothesis; you're not trying to prove it, you're trying to disprove it. Any good scientist is a skeptic; if he's not, he or she should not be a scientist. But yet the language of the global warming alarmists, 'denier' is the language of religion, it's heretic, you are a blasphemer. The response from the Sierra Club, 'We have decreed this is the answer, you must accept it.' And so he didn't know his facts because he just knew his religion."
Today on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson issued his annual warning about Halloween, this time in the introduction to a story about a Ugandan woman who blamed her frequent nightmares on her family’s relationship with a witchdoctor.
Robertson said that the woman's story was a cautionary tale to all the children dressing up in costumes this Halloween, whom he believes unwittingly “celebrate Satan” during the holiday.
At last night’s Republican presidential debate, Mike Huckabee offered a convenient solution to all of America’s health care concerns: Rather than focus on improving access to health care, why not just cure all the diseases that make people sick?
“We don't have a health care crisis in America, we have a health crisis,” he said. “And until we deal with the health of Americans and do what we did with polio — when I was a little kid, we eradicated it. You know how much money we spent on polio last year in America? We didn't spend any. We’ve saved billions of dollars.”
Huckabee conveniently failed to mention that we wouldn’t have the polio vaccine — among others — without fetal tissue research, a practice he wants to ban and has roundly criticized in the wake of deceptive sting videos targeting Planned Parenthood.
“One of the earliest advances with fetal tissue was to use fetal kidney cells to create the first poliovirus vaccines, which are now estimated to save 550,000 lives worldwide every year,” CNN reported. “In the early days of making the vaccine, researchers infected fetal kidney cells in Petri dishes to produce a large amount of virus that they could then harvest, purify and use to vaccinate people. (The virus evolves to become less deadly when it infects cells out of the body, and thus could safely be given to people to prime their immune system for the real thing.) Today manufacturers of the polio vaccine use other types of human cells, which weren’t available in the mid-1900s. They also use monkey cells, which they originally avoided for fear that making the vaccine in animal cells could put people at risk of diseases from other species. Many of our other common vaccines, such as chicken pox, rubella and shingles, have been produced in tissue derived from fetuses, particularly two electively terminated pregnancies from the 1960s.”
Seeing that Huckabee has floated the idea of using the National Guard to raid abortion clinics and promised to outlaw abortion by executive fiat, he should probably give a close look into the development of the polio vaccine.
NRA board member Ted Nugent came to the defense of the South Carolina police officer who was fired after his violent arrest of a black high school student, writing in WorldNetDaily today that “that high school brat had it coming.”
Nugent, proudly boasting that he was challenging “political correctness” and “liberal denial freaks,” wrote that he was proud of the officer for having “yanked the Spring Valley High School defiant brat out of her classroom desk and dragged her kicking and squealing like the disobedient punk she is.”
“Act like an animal and you will end up being treated like an animal,” he added.
I would like to obliterate the obscenity of political correctness yet once again by offering a huge Nuge thank you and SALUTE to Columbia, South Carolina, Senior Deputy Ben Fields. You know, that master of “improvise, adapt and overcome” good citizen cop all good Americans have come to admire and respect, who yanked the Spring Valley High School defiant brat out of her classroom desk and dragged her kicking and squealing like the disobedient punk she is.
As the liberal denial freaks recoil in feigned horror at such “unnecessary” violent disruption by the good officer Fields, I am proud to stand with the many millions of Americans who know damn well she had it coming, and clearly long overdue at that.
Here's a basic principle of life for anybody with a soul: obey!
By all accounts, the brat, like so many undisciplined brats before her, simply refused to obey the rules, refused to obey the teacher, refused to obey the principal and refused to obey officer Fields.
By all these consistent indicators, how much do you want to bet she disobeyed her parents and every other authority figure her entire life, and got away with it?
Finally, somebody did the right thing and gave the poor child a dose of reality that will probably save her life, unless she is let off again. Political correctness still reigns supreme, and a guy that did the right thing has been fired. I still stand with Fields.
Obey and you won't get ripped from your desk and put under control.
Act like an animal and you will end up being treated like an animal.
Tamara Scott, an Iowa conservative activist who serves as a Republican National Committee member for the state, invited two anti-vaccine activists on to her “Truth for Our Time” radio program last week, where she said that the real problem causing disease outbreaks in schools isn’t people refusing to be vaccinated but instead the new “socialistic” model of schooling where children are forced to share pencils.
Scott spoke with Elaine Dannemann, the proprietor of the “Vaccine Liberation Army” website who has said that she is in a primordial, cosmic war” against vaccines, about a new California law that requires daycare workers to be vaccinated against measles and whooping cough.
Scott was outraged, saying that the real health problem in schools is socialism and that the best thing you can do for your children’s health is to take them out of public schools.
“The schools are some of the germiest places you’ll ever be around,” she said. "They’ve gone to this socialistic teaching where you no longer have your own pencils you’re responsible for so you can learn how to take care of things and be a good steward; it’s all socialistic in the middle of the table, you’re all facing each other, handling each other’s things. And the schools, yet, when my kids were in school, kept wondering why they kept having all the issues with strep throat and all the issues with all these childhood illnesses continually happening. Because it’s the new way they’re doing school in the classroom. So, if you want to keep your kid healthy, take them out of public school. It will help them mentally, emotionally, academically and now, physically, it would help them as well.”
“There, I’ve just said it,” she concluded. “I may never be able to run for office, that quote will follow me with some of the liberal news organizations, but it is true, that’s probably the best thing you can do for your child right now.”
Scott has previously interviewed vaccine critic Gary Kohls on her program.
Peter LaBarbera spoke with Janet Mefferd today about the "Understanding Homosexuality: The Politically Incorrect Truth" event that took place the day before the World Congress of Families conference opened in Salt Lake City earlier this week.
LaBarbera, who runs Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, complained that the organizers of the WCF conference shunned any official association with the anti-gay event and the various anti-gay activists who spoke at it, forcing them to organize their own separate event the day before by refusing to allow them to participate in the official WCF conference. (Although at least one participant in the anti-gay conference, the Family Research Council's Peter Sprigg, was also scheduled to speak at the main WCF event.)
LaBarbera blamed this on the fact that the Mormon Church has supposedly begun to go soft on fighting the "gay agenda" by compromising on nondiscrimination legislation in Utah, which was problematic since several organizers of the WCF conference are members of the LDS church.
This sort of timidity, LaBarbera stated, is sadly rampant in the "pro-family" movement, which is why voices like his and Brian Camenker of MassResistance and even Mefferd herself are never invited to speak at the more "mainstream" Religious Right events such as the annual Values Voter Summit.
"People like Brian Camenker do not get invited to these family conferences," he said, "let's just be honest here. There is a political correctness within the pro-family movement and you talk about it, I talk about it, but most people don't. I love the Values Voter Conference and the Family Research Council; I went this year and had a great time, but Brian Camenker, or myself, or even you will never be invited to speak there because everybody is afraid of, 'Oh, it's too anti-gay.' The people who are telling the most truth about homosexual activists and the transgender agenda are usually, in a way, kind of, hands off and shunned a little bit because, 'Hey, we want to make sure we're not attacked as haters.' Well, the funny thing is, no matter what you do, if you take on the gay agenda at all,you will be called a hater."
"Of course," agreed Mefferd. "No matter how nice you are, you're just a nice hater, fooling us with your false claims of love."
If you are too anti-gay for the World Congress of Families, that's saying something.
Yesterday on “Washington Watch,” Family Research Council officials Tony Perkins and Peter Sprigg chatted about the World Congress of Families, the international gathering of social conservative activists taking place this week in Salt Lake City, which Sprigg will be attending.
The two were upset that LGBT advocacy groups have criticized the World Congress of Families, with Perkins insisting that criticism of the event amounts to an attempt to “silence” conservative Christians and Sprigg laughably asserting that “the vast majority” of the discussions at the Utah conference “really don’t have anything to do with homosexuality.”
This is a tad ironic, since the World Congress of Families actually backed a Russian law censoring pro-LGBT speech.
The group, an offshoot of the Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society, signed on to a statement [PDF] defending the notorious speech law, which bans “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relationships” to minors and has been used to criminalize speech in favor of LGBT rights:
We acknowledge that the Russian law protects the innocence of children and the basic rights of their parents recognized in the international legislation and treaties. With its new law Russia is protecting genuine and universally recognized human rights against artificial and fabricated "values" aggressively imposed in many modern societies. We also note that the concepts of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” are not outlined in the existing binding international treaties and agreements.
We thus call for respect of the sovereignty of the Russian people and we invite all organizations and people who feel responsible for the protection of the innocence of children and their rights, the natural family and parental rights to stand up for Russia, as well as for Ukraine and Moldova suffering the same pressure due to similar laws.
World Congress of Families spokesman Larry Jacobs hailed the law as a “great idea,” and Alexey Komov, the organization’s representative in Russia, similarly boasted that “a huge number of people and human rights organizations around the world are supporting Russia in an effort to protect their children and their family values from aggressive immoral propaganda.”
So while Sprigg and Perkins are attacking groups for merely criticizing the World Congress of Families, it is the World Congress of Families that has actually supported efforts to censor speech.
We released a report last month about the recent anti-Planned Parenthood smear’s origins in the radical “rescue” movement, the segment of the anti-choice movement that has sought to end legal abortion by protesting outside of clinics, harassing and intimidating providers and patients and attempting to sue individual providers out of existence.
In a conference call with members of the clergy last week organized by Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, two “rescue” movement leaders joined Rep. Diane Black, the Tennessee Republican who is leading efforts to defund Planned Parenthood in the House and a member of the House Special Committee targeting the group, to discuss how the recent smear campaign is revitalizing their movement and how they plan to use it to “dismantle” Planned Parenthood entirely. One activist also revealed that the founder of the Center for Medical Progress, the group behind the deceptive sting videos, sought the “destruction” of the group by attempting “to get prosecutions.”
Eric Scheidler, whose father Joseph Scheidler pioneered many of the “rescue” movement’s tactics and who is now organizing nationwide Planned Parenthood protests through the family’s Pro-Life Action League, told call participants that “one of the most wonderful things to come out of this entire scandal” has been the resurgence of protests outside of abortion clinics. He said that he hoped that his protests would lead to Planned Parenthood losing all government funding and being “kicked out of every one of the 700 towns across the United States” where they operate.
It’s important to note that the “Protest PP” effort is not just about a couple of big national protests in the firestorm of this scandal in 2015. Our long-term goal is to bolster the pro-life presence at the Planned Parenthood centers around the country on into the future and, most wonderfully, we are seeing that happen. Abortion clinics that haven’t had pro-lifers outside standing in witness for years or even forever are now seeing pro-life groups forming to get involved regularly in an ongoing way outside the doors of those abortion clinics. …
We really expect to see this fervor continue, not just through the end of this year but on through the future, and that’s one of the most wonderful things to come out of this entire scandal and the exposure that we’ve been able to give to Planned Parenthood and who they really are. …
Planned Parenthood’s public image is going to be further knocked down the point where we will finally be able to, first, deprive them of any government funding whatsoever and, second, get them kicked out of every one of the 700 towns across the United States where they have centers.
Troy Newman, the leader of Operation Rescue who is also a driving force behind the Center for Medical Progress’ smears on Planned Parenthood and a member of the group’s board, explained that at the outset of their project he and the Center for Medical Progress’ David Daleiden decided that their goal was to “get prosecutions” of Planned Parenthood employees in order to achieve the “destruction or dismantling” of the organization. (Operation Rescue’s Cheryl Sullenger has also said that “criminal prosecutions” were the ultimate goal of the project.)
He came to me three years ago and we sat in our office, we talked a lot about what the end goal was. We didn’t want to just infiltrate Planned Parenthood for the sake of infiltrating them or for the sake of getting YouTube hits … At the end of the day, we both agreed that our number one goal was to get prosecutions against these people that are violating the law. And prosecutions lead to defunding and defunding leads to the destruction or dismantling of Planned Parenthood.
As our primary goal, I believe all the elements are in place to accomplish those goals. If you look at the systematic way that we, Center for Medical Progress has been able to disseminate information, each individual video has a story to tell and at the end of the day, the story is really simple. Number one, this is not necessarily about abortion. So all the questions that are being asked in Congress about abortion and so forth are good, I think, to educate people, but it’s not specifically germane to the conversation that we’re having right now. This is about the wholesale illegal trade in fetal cadavers and fetal organs.
Newman expressed frustration that “the narrative is being changed on a daily basis” and the anti-choice movement has moved straight toward passing legislation in Congress without first getting “these abortionists thrown in jail” as he and Daleiden originally intended, which he said is the surefire way to make sure that “Planned Parenthood is dismantled forever.”
We do need to ban abortions after 20 weeks, absolutely, we do need to defund Planned Parenthood, absolutely, we do need to have these select committees, but more importantly, there’s enough evidence that we’ve released already — already — to get these abortionists thrown in jail. And the thing that’s particularly disturbing to me is that the narrative is being changed on a daily basis toward something other than the original intent, the evidence that has already been brought out there, that these are clear violations of the law and district attorneys and attorneys general need to take notice that they need to prosecute these abortionists for the crimes that are clearly being committed on these tapes. And with that, the first time we get an indictment, a prosecution, a conviction, okay, they lose their Title X funding. Their funding goes right out the door. And as soon as they lose their funding, that’s over half their money, then Planned Parenthood is dismantled forever.