Lipkin spoke with Rick Wiles yesterday on “Trunews” about the Iranian nuclear deal, which he said is all part of Obama’s plan to make “Israel go to war against Iran.” Saudi Arabia will then emerge as the regional power since the two countries will “destroy each other.” (After all, Lipkin believes that Obama is a “Saudi plant.”) This Iranian-Israeli war will allow Obama to “free himself up for his real mission, which is to make America a Muslim country.”
“President Obama is a Muslim,” Lipkin continued. “If you’re a Muslim, your god is Satan; if you’re a Muslim, then you are criminally psychotic. This is the plan to destroy the human race. This is something that Allah wants.”
He added that Muslims believe that “the only way for Allah to be greater than the God of the Jews and the Christians is to kill every last human being on the face of the earth, that’s the plan of Islam.”
Plenty of people, it turns out, including Republican politicians seeking to capitalize on anti-Obama fears in order to lift their profile in the increasingly far-right party — a poll in May found that a full one-third of Republicans believed that the government was “trying to take over Texas.”
“Frankly, I gotta tell you, I think the cause of the underlying concerns is that we see instances, like a shooting in Fort Hood by a terrorist, that the president labels workplace violence. We see the president come to the border in Texas and say it’s safer than it’s ever been,” said Abbott. “And so I think it was a misplaced perception by people in Texas who have problems with the Obama administration and connected that trust with the Obama administration to the military.”
2. Rick Perry
Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry initially criticized Abbott’s fanning of the Jade Helm 15 flames, saying that while “you can always question” civilian leadership, “I think our military is quite trustworthy.”
Not to be outdone by his presidential rival Perry, Sen. Ted Cruz assured his flock that he had “ reached out to the Pentagon to inquire about this exercise ,” and although he had “no reason to doubt” the official line about the training exercise, “I understand the reason for concern and uncertainty, “because when the federal government has not demonstrated itself to be trustworthy in this administration, the natural consequence is that many citizens don’t trust what it is saying.”
4. Louie Gohmert
After Abbott ordered the Texas Guard to monitor Jade Helm 15, Rep. Louie Gohmert threw himself into promoting the conspiracy theory, releasing a statement saying that the conspiracy theorists were “legitimately suspicious” because “true patriots” and Christians were being persecuted in America.
Gohmert continued with some theories of his own:
Once I observed the map depicting ‘hostile,’ ‘permissive,’ and ‘uncertain’ states and locations, I was rather appalled that the hostile areas amazingly have a Republican majority, ‘cling to their guns and religion,’ and believe in the sanctity of the United States Constitution. When the federal government begins, even in practice, games or exercises, to consider any U.S. city or state in 'hostile' control and trying to retake it, the message becomes extremely calloused and suspicious.
Such labeling tends to make people who have grown leery of federal government overreach become suspicious of whether their big brother government anticipates certain states may start another civil war or be overtaken by foreign radical Islamist elements which have been reported to be just across our border. Such labeling by a government that is normally not allowed to use military force against its own citizens is an affront to the residents of that particular state considered as 'hostile,' as if the government is trying to provoke a fight with them. The map of the exercise needs to change, the names on the map need to change, and the tone of the exercise needs to be completely revamped so the federal government is not intentionally practicing war against its own states.
Like Abbott and Perry, Gohmert was insistent that the whole conspiracy theory was President Obama’s fault:
5. Rand Paul
We’ll give Rand Paul credit for seeming a little surprised when a popular Iowa talk radio host asked him about Jade Helm 15, although he said he’d been hearing about it from constituents and would “look into” it. If Paul ever did look into it and find that the conspiracy theory was completely bogus, however, he never bothered to say so.
Yesterday on “The Simon Conway Show,” Rick Santorum fielded a question about the heavilyedited video purporting to show a Planned Parenthood official trying to sell fetal tissue. The unedited videomakes clear that she was actually “discussing the reimbursement cost for consensual, legal tissue donations.”
Santorum, ignoring the fact that the video’s claims were quickly debunked, called for a full-scale government investigation into Planned Parenthood and criminal prosecution. He also linked his war against Planned Parenthood to the recent debate over the Confederate flag in wake of the Charleston church shooting.
“If you want to scrub all racism from America, let’s start with Planned Parenthood because it was started by a racist named Margaret Sanger,” he said, alleging that Sanger was bent on “culling out the ‘undesirables,’ including blacks, in America, so if you want to go back and take down the Confederate flag, let’s take down Planned Parenthood because Planned Parenthood has continued to do disgusting things.”
Santorum also criticized Hillary Clinton for receiving the Margaret Sanger Award — whose other honorees include Martin Luther King, Jr., who praised Sanger — claiming that it is “remarkable that she is able to get away with that.” Santorum vowed that if he were to be elected president he would use the bully pulpit to go after Planned Parenthood.
While Santorum is correct that Sanger was a supporter of the eugenics movement, as PolitiFact noted, the movement “had been widely accepted” at the time among political leaders including Winston Churchill, Theodore Roosevelt and Herbert Hoover: “In other words, supporting eugenics did not automatically equal racism.” Biographers have also found that Sanger strongly opposed racial segregation. Instead, her critics have relied on a single quote that they have badlydistorted.
James David Manning, the anti-gay Harlem pastor who has struck up an alliance with the anti-government group Oath Keepers, took to his “Manning Report” YouTube program yesterday to explain his theory of how people become gay.
Just as various diseases are spread through sexual intercourse and saliva, Manning explained, so too is the “sodomite demon.” If you have had sex with or even kissed or been at the same restaurant as someone who has such “demons in their blood,” he warned, you may have been “introduced to these demons in your life, sodomy, when you had no defense.”
The Tenth Circuit today released its opinion in Little Sisters of the Poor v. Burwell, becoming the latest federal appellate court to reject the claim that the Obama Administration’s contraception coverage accommodation for religious nonprofits violates their religious liberty.
This is the latest effort by the far right to redefine “religious liberty” and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) to use as a sword to deprive third parties of their legal rights. Under RFRA, no federal law imposing a substantial burden on religious exercise can be sustained unless it is the least restrictive means of achieving a compelling government purpose.
The Tenth Circuit now joins the DC Circuit, the Third Circuit, the Fifth Circuit, and the Seventh Circuit in rejecting this attack on the accommodation for religious nonprofits. Notably, all these decisions came after the Supreme Court rewrote the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) in the Hobby Lobby case, giving certain for-profit corporations and their owners greater latitude to exempt themselves from laws they find personally offensive. (The Sixth Circuit also reached the same conclusion, but it is still in the process of reconsidering it to make sure it is consistent with Hobby Lobby.)
The Obama Administration created a process whereby religious nonprofits can exempt themselves from the federal requirement that its employees have certain contraception healthcare coverage: Fill out a form (or now, just send a letter) and let the Department of Health and Human Services know that you won’t be providing it and say who your insurance carrier is, so that officials can inform them of their legal requirements to provide the coverage. The religious right has called even this accommodation a violation of the religious liberty rights of nonprofits, saying it makes them complicit in the provision of contraception that violates their religious beliefs.
The Tenth Circuit concluded that the accommodation does not substantially burden Plaintiffs’ religious exercise and therefore does not violate RFRA. The court stated:
The accommodation relieves Plaintiffs from complying with the Mandate and guarantees they will not have to provide, pay for, or facilitate contraceptive coverage. Plaintiffs do not “trigger” or otherwise cause contraceptive coverage because federal law, not the act of opting out, entitles plan participants and beneficiaries to coverage. Although Plaintiffs allege the administrative tasks required to opt out of the Mandate make them complicit in the overall delivery scheme, opting out instead relieves them from complicity.
The court does not question the sincerity of the plaintiffs’ assertion that filling out the form violates their religious beliefs. But it also pointed out that under RFRA, whether a burden is substantial is a legal question that is up to the court, not the plaintiff, to answer:
If plaintiffs could assert and establish that a burden is “substantial” without any possibility of judicial scrutiny, the word “substantial” would become wholly devoid of independent meaning. Furthermore, accepting any burden alleged by Plaintiffs as “substantial” would improperly conflate the determination that a religious belief is sincerely held with the determination that a law or policy substantially burdens religious exercise. (internal citation removed)
Whether it’s women’s ability to access their legal right to healthcare or same-sex couples’ ability to exercise their constitutional right to marry, imagine the chaos if people could simply exempt themselves from – and severely weaken – laws they disapprove of by citing their personal religious beliefs.
But that is a recipe for a Balkanized society, not a healthy pluralistic democracy. Citing a previous case, the Tenth Circuit states: “Law accommodates religion; it cannot wholly exempt religion from the reach of the law.”
Steve Deace invited fellow Religious Right radio host Kevin Swanson on to his program last week, and both were furious that the U.S. opposed a United Nations resolution which LGBT rights advocates worried “could be used as precedent to oppose rights for same-sex couples, single parents, and other forms of families in future UN negotiations.”
Deace pointed to the resolution as a sign that the U.S. has “now out-crazied the United Nations,” while Swanson managed to pull off an even more ominous warning to listeners: prepare to go to jail.
“Get ready to go to jail,” Swanson. “I’m talking about millions of people in jail within the next five years or so unless we take a stand right now.”
In a 2008 interview with far-right radio host Kevin Swanson, Roy Moore, now the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, attacked proponents of the separation of church and state, claiming that “the First Amendment itself implicitly recognizes God.”
Swanson asked Moore if the “kneejerk reaction to any reference to our Christian God, our Christian past, to the Bible” was “due to a minority of atheists that are making an enormous amount of noise.”
“It’s due to that,” Moore responded, “it’s also due to ignorance of our past, our history and our law. You know, right now there’s an exclusion of anything about God from our public life. Indeed, they say they cannot refer to God because of the First Amendment. But without the reference to God, without the acknowledgement that there is a God that gives us liberty, freedom of thought, there would be no First Amendment.
“In other words, the First Amendment itself implicitly recognizes God because of our history and our past.”
On today's "WallBuilders Live" radio broadcast, David Barton declared that Christians cannot vote for any candidate in the GOP primary that will not pledge to nominate Supreme Court justices who will overturn the court's recent gay marriage ruling.
"If you get a different administration, you can get some different Supreme Court justices," Barton said. "How many times in the last 30 years has the Supreme Court overturned itself? It did that on nativity scenes, it did that on Ten Commandments monuments, it has done that on homosexuality, it has done that on a number of issues where it reverses itself. So you get some different justices in there and they'll vote to bring a case back before them on this issue and you may see a complete change as a result."
After Barton and co-host Rick Green lamented how different things would have been had Robert Bork been confirmed to the Supreme Court instead of Anthony Kennedy, Barton declared that Republican candidates "are lining up now and you need to be asking the question of every one, where are they on the marriage issue and where are they on judges and if you don't get the right answer, then find a different candidate."
Last week, the House descended into chaos after the GOP tried to strip language from an interior appropriations bill that would make sure that the Confederate flag isn’t displayed in National Parks. Rep. Ken Calvert, the California Republican who chairs the Interior subcommittee, added an amendment to the bill to remove the language at the behest of the House GOP leadership, which, according to Calvert, was acting “at the request of some southern Members of the Republican Caucus.”
However, Rep. Pete Olson, R-Texas, told conservative radio host Sam Malone last week that Democrats should “shut up” about the issue since 150 years ago many of the Confederate leaders came from the Democratic Party, which apparently hasn’t changed at all since then!
“The Democrats have no standing whatsoever to talk about that flag because that was the flag of their party during the Civil War, that was their battle flag, not our battle flag, our battle flag was the stars and stripes with President Lincoln,” Olson said. “They have no credibility. Just shut up. Apologize now.”
In a 2006 interview with far-right radio host Kevin Swanson, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore — who was then between his two stints on the state Supreme Court — lamented that public schools were teaching students about Islam and the theory of evolution, saying Christian parents couldn’t “justify sending their children to schools where they teach that they weren’t created in the image of God, that they evolved from monkeys.”
Moore also repeated his insistence that that Rep. Keith Ellison, who had just been elected as the first Muslim member of Congress, should not be allowed to take his seat in the House if he swore his oath of office on a Koran, saying that such events were leading to the “destruction of our society and our nation from within.”
Asked by Swanson about Ellison’s election, Moore responded that it was “a very bad indication of where we are going” and claimed that the congressman-elect was “known to associate with groups that actually oppose the Constitution.”
“This Ellison wants to swear on the Koran and basically swear that his law supersedes the Constitution of the United States, and he shouldn’t be seated,” he said.
Swanson agreed, saying, “If we begin to bring humanist socialists denying the existence of God or Muslims denying the word of God, the Bible, that is the foundation of this country, I think we’ve got tyranny to look forward to. I’m not sure if it’s the Muslim kind or the socialist kind, but either kind is bad.”
“Either kind is bad,” Moore replied, “and you’re right, when we start doing that, we’re basically looking at the destruction of our society and our nation from within. We’ve never been defeated by a foreign power and we’re asking to be defeated by our own actions here.”
Later in the interview, Moore lamented that Ellison’s election shows the American people’s “ignorance” of the divine origins of the U.S., as also exemplified by the fact that on Thanksgiving “they teach in school it’s thanksgiving to the Indians and not to God.”
Citing a lawsuit over one California elementary school’s Islamic studies program, Moore claimed,“California schools are teaching Islam in their schools. They’re teaching the kids how to pray, when to pray and how to go to Mecca, and that is going to spread across our country if we don’t wake up.”
“I think that we’ve got to recognize that the state’s role is not to teach our children,” he told Swanson. “That doesn’t mean you can’t send them there if you want, but if you do, you’ve got to justify that some way. And I don’t think Christians can actually justify sending their children to schools where they teach that they weren’t created in the image of God, that they evolved from monkeys.” (This, incidentally, is not actually what the theory of evolution teaches.)
When Swanson asked Moore what God thought of all of this, Moore responded, “I think that when He sees us welcoming in gods that are not the God upon which we were founded, we’ve got trouble.”
Citing a passage from Chronicles in which God tells Solomon that He will uproot his people and destroy their temple if they start worshiping other gods, Moore warned, “That’s what we’re doing and that’s what’s liable to happen if we continue to do it.”
Yesterday, notorious “Stone Homos” pastor James David Manning appeared on “Trunews” for a “discussion about Barack Obama’s satanic assault on America’s morality.”
Not only did Manning spend time criticizing President Obama, but he also castigated the Supreme Court, arguing that “the Devil himself has written this opinion” on marriage equality.
He also told host Rick Wiles that “perhaps [Justice] Kennedy and many of those who are on the Supreme Court have had sodomite relations themselves” and were being blackmailed by their secret gay lovers: “They have got to support this sodomy, they’ve got to say it or otherwise they get exposed.”
Manning said people don’t realize that the court’s ruling on same-sex marriage will lead to the fall of America: “Fifty years from now people will look back at this period and say, ‘My God from Zion, how could a nation have fallen, how could the mighty have fallen so quickly and so far and so low?’”
“If there’s anybody still alive in the United States of America 50 years from now,” Wiles added.
The “Trunews” host explained that “this country is ripe to be overthrown” since “we no longer have the Lord’s protection” and “the Lord is no longer obligated to defend the United States of America,” warning that “there’s a great attitude adjustment coming to the United States very, very soon.”
Last night, Vision America's Rick Scarborough spoke at St. Andrew Baptist Church in Panama City, Florida, as part of the church's weekly "Spiritual Revolution - Reclaiming America" series, where he declared that the Supreme Court's gay marriage decision will kill this nation and warned that children will now be adopted by gay parents and wind up in Hell.
"The reason Satan is trying to destroy this country right now is because we send more missionaries, do more good than any nation in history," Scarborough thundered. "But that's all at stake right now because by the act of five unelected judges mandated something upon this country that, for the first time could kill it!"
Gay marriage is far worse than abortion, he explained, because Christians can simply "opt out" and refuse to have abortions but "when homosexuals begin lining up to adopt those children, they will literally disciple them into an early grave called Hell."
End Times broadcaster Rick Wiles blasted the U.S. military yesterday for moving to end the ban on transgender service members, which Wiles pointed to as proof that America is turning into Babylon and “descending into the pit of filthy lewdness.”
Rather than serve alongside “transvestites,” Wiles said, “all Christians in the U.S. Armed Forces must now come out and all pastors must now announce to their congregations that young men and women in the churches should not enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces.”
“Shame on the U.S. military for capitulating to Barack Obama’s sexual perversion,” the “Trunews” host said. “History will shame them for their moral cowardliness.”
Wiles also warned of a nuclear war with Russia, which he says has plans to use military force to stop America’s “gay delirium.” And “of course those nuclear weapons will go up against America’s new transvestite army.”
Operation Rescue’s Troy Newman joined Jim Schneider on VCY America’s “Crosstalk” program last week to discuss his efforts to shut down abortion providers, who he said are bringing God’s judgment down on America.
When a caller asked about God’s judgment for legal abortion, Newman responded that God doesn’t always make His displeasure known with “some sort of cataclysmic judgment, like the Flood” but often comes “one step at a time, one small step until the people groan so heavily and they return back to God and then they’re slowly restored.”
“If you look at what’s going on in America….we’ve had some terrible weather patterns lately, our economic clout has been taken away, the stock market is artificially inflated, there’s a lot of people that are predicting collapse there, the dollar is a fiat currency, is on shaky ground, our moral decay, our morals have decayed so far, the attack on Christians and people of faith,” he said.
“You know, it’s easier to be a homosexual in this country than it is to be a Christian, you’re a protected class there while we’re a minority. I just think that at some point, people, this country’s going to have to hit the reset button.”
Another caller asked Newman to respond to “a lot of these religious denominations that affirm abortion” and “give ecclesiastical cover for this just outrageous and demonic activity.”
“The scripture is clear that those that handle the word of God and claim to be ministers of the Gospel will be held to a higher degree of judgment,” Newman responded. These religious denominations “that approve of abortion and homosexuality and other sins,” he said, would then receive especially harsh judgment from God.
“I don’t want to be on the Day of Judgment, period, but I definitely don’t want to be in their shoes,” he said.
Newman also answered the caller’s question about the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling, saying, “It’s time that we really stop giving so much weight and credence to the judges that are making up law.”
Newman said that, as a pastor, he would refuse to marry same-sex couples (something no pastor is being forced to do anyway), just as he is refusing to buy health insurance or pay a fine in defiance of the Supreme Court’s decision upholding the Affordable Care Act.
Perkins denounced the Supreme Court for its marriage equality ruling and commended Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore for ordering judges in his state to defy an earlier federal court ruling striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Perkins wondered why more people, such as members of Congress, aren’t “challenging the Supreme Court.”
“It’s become where we have an oligarchy, where we have five unelected judges, lawyers in black robes, who have the ability to dictate law and policy for this country,” Perkins said, before warning that the supposed judicial tyranny seen in the marriage case “will be the downfall of America.”
It was only a few years ago that a local official in Louisiana drew national ire, and threats of dismissal from Gov. Bobby Jindal, for refusing to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple because he held the personal conviction that such marriages are wrong and undermine the wellbeing of children. Now, however, many Republicans are rallying around local officials who refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, similarly citing their personal convictions that such marriages are wrong.
One of these officials is Casey Davis, a county clerk in Kentucky who has boasted that he will defy the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage and deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Davis appeared on the Family Research Council’s “Washington Watch” program yesterday, where he tried to portray himself as the latest victim of anti-Christian persecution in America.
Davis told host Tony Perkins, who heads the Family Research Council and recently praised Davis, that his rights are “being violated” by being asked to perform his job responsibilities.
“It’s not just me being violated but it’s both side of the coin, both sides of this issue that’s at stake here, and that is our First Amendment rights,” Davis said. “We have religious freedom in this country and if we lose that we’ve lost everything.”
A debate over immigration on the Fox News program "The Five" got pretty heated last night, with Geraldo Rivera at one point telling Eric Bolling that it is a good thing that they are friends or "I'd knock you out right now."
Geraldo Rivera is a pro-amnesty and pro-illegal immigration Hispanic supremacist. He is also a projection racist who stays busy calling other people "racist" while hoping to distract from his own racism.
Now he has really gone too far by threatening another Fox News employee with violence due to his opinions against illegal immigration.
Please watch the video ... Then contact Fox News to demand Geraldo Rivera be fired for threatening violence on the air!
"Geraldo Rivera has made a direct threat of physical violence on live television seen by millions and that is behavior that no company or news agency should tolerate!" said William Gheen, President of ALIPAC. "If Geraldo can threaten violence without consequences from his employer or termination of employment, then Fox News Corporation is sending a message across America that threats of violence from illegal immigrant supporters like Geraldo are acceptable, and that could put the company in a legally actionable position should others follow Geraldo's style of violent outbursts."
We find it a little ironic that Gheen, of all people, would be decrying threats of violence over the issue of immigration considering that, back in 2011, he warned that President Obama was planning on using undocumented immigrants to wage war on "White America" and so the only response left was to engage in "illegal and violent" "extra-political activities":
We’re no longer referring to him as President Barack Obama, our national organization has made the decision and made the announcement we now refer to him as Dictator Barack Obama. That’s what he is. And basically at this point, if you’re looking for a peaceful, political recourse there really isn’t one that we can think of, and I’m really not sure what to tell people out there than I guess they need to make decisions soon to just accept whatever comes next or some type of extra-political activities that I can’t really talk about because they’re all illegal and violent.
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore has not been hiding his displeasure about the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down gay marriage bans, telling Alabama church audiences that the ruling will result in Christians being “persecuted” and has, at the behest of Satan, “destroyed the institution of God.”
OSA, which was previously led by the Benham brothers’ father, Flip, is now under the direction of Rusty Lee Thomas, who memorably took to the streets of New York on the ninth anniversary of the September 11 attacks to announce that the terrorist attacks were divine retribution for legal abortion. According to the group, Moore’s chief of staff, Ben DuPre, is an important localcontact, and DuPre introduced Moore at the Saturday event.
Moore told the audience that “America is under attack” as it moves away from God. "I'm sorry but this country was not founded on Muhammad. It was not founded on Buddha. It was not founded on secular humanism. It was founded on God,” he said.
AL.com reports that Moore addressed complaints about OSA’s radicalism, saying "You know, some told me 'you know they're a radical group.' I said yeah. They are radical for God.”
Thomas opened up the event by telling activists that in order to bring Heaven to Earth, they must end legal abortion and gay marriage, because there are “no babies being murdered in Heaven” and “in Heaven they’re not parading their sin like Sodom and trying to redefine marriage.”
Thomas then brought Moore up to the stage to accept a “Godly Statesman Award," after which he gathered the audience around the chief justice to pray that God would use him to “set an example for lesser magistrates throughout the United States of America that it’s time to say no to the federal beast!”
As Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker prepares to officially kick off his presidential campaign, People For the American Way and Voces de la Frontera Action are launching a Spanish-language radio ad in Wisconsin challenging Walker’s anti-immigrant positions. The ad highlights Walker’s support for ending executive actions that protect DREAMers and families from deportation, his elimination of in-state tuition for DREAMers, and his funding cuts to public education.
“As Governor, Walker has shown time and time again that he’ll go after immigrant students and families to appeal to the anti-immigrant base of the Republican Party,” said Carlos A. Sanchez, Coordinator of Political Campaigns for People For the American Way. “Walker’s extreme record as governor and support for mass deportation policies make clear how dangerous a president he would be.”
American Family Radio's news director Fred Jackson filled in on "Focal Point" today for a vacationing Bryan Fischer, where he interviewed Jan Markell of Olive Tree Ministries about the recent Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage.
The ruling, Markell said, is evidence that Christians are now "exiles in our own country" and warned that Religious Right ministries could soon be stripped of their tax-exempt status and shut down by the government.
"We are truly exiles in our own country now," she stated. "The Bible foretold that the world would hate us for doing what is right and it also foretold that there would come a time when the generation would be called perilous ... and I think we're there."
"Righteous Christians are truly beyond grieved," she continued. "They can't believe that this has happened, not just in the lifetime, but within a relatively short period of time, within a five to seven year period of time, it just seems like not just the world has been turned over to evil, but it seems like the greatest nation that certainly in the last many hundreds of years has been turned over to a reprobate mind."
"We may be totally silenced," Markell warned. "Who knows? American Family Radio, Olive Tree Ministries, maybe we'll be shut down. It would not surprise me at all ... They talk like this in North Korea, in China but now we're talking like this in America and I can only consider that it's probably judgment on us because too much of America has gone astray spiritually."