Good news out of the White House today for advocates of religious liberty and church-state separation: President Obama has selected Melissa Rogers as the new director of the Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. She will also serve as a Special Assistant to the President.
Rogers is a widely respected scholar on religious freedom and an exceptionally thoughtful advocate for the position that the separation of church and state is a cornerstone of religious liberty. People For the American Way and PFAW Foundation have frequently worked in coalition with Rogers, particularly during her tenure as general counsel of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty. She is also a former director of the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life and director of the Center for Religion and Public Affairs at Wake Forest University Divinity School.
Rogers was the first chair of President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, and in 2011 she was appointed to a subgroup of the State Department’s Religion and Foreign Policy Working Group. Rogers steps into her new position at a time when the definition and scope of “religious liberty” are being strongly contested in the public arena, with conservative religious and legal groups using the term to challenge health care reform and push for broad exceptions to anti-discrimination laws.
In addition, Rogers will face ongoing questions about an issue left unaddressed during President Obama’s first term: the president’s campaign pledge to ensure that organizations using federal funds to carry out social services cannot discriminate with those funds in hiring staff.
“It’s hard to imagine anyone who could do a better job than Melissa Rogers at dealing with these challenges,” says People For’s Executive Vice President Marge Baker. “The American people need a thoughtful and convincing voice like Melissa’s to help us sort through the real religious liberty issues as well as the phony ones.”
Breitbart News Editor-At-Large Ben Shapiro is out with an innovative and pioneering game plan for Republicans: attack Democrats. Shapiro spoke to Pat Robertson today on the 700 Club where he maintained that Republicans lost the last election because they didn’t try to demonize President Obama, who “painted Mitt Romney as the worst guy since Stalin.”
That’s right, according to Shapiro, Republicans were simply too afraid to criticize Obama during the campaign.
Shapiro offers even more brilliant advice later in the interview, where he told Republicans to respond to allegations of racism by calling Democrats “racist for boiling racism down to anything with which you disagree; what that does is it demeans racism and makes racism into something that means nothing and that’s something that Republicans need to do on a more regular basis.”
He said that unlike conservatives, liberals “don’t have facts or evidence to back their positions.”
This revolutionary strategy is on display at Breitbart News, which recently ran an “exposé” on the nonexistent Friends of Hamas and cited a satirical article claiming Paul Krugman had filed for bankruptcy.
Last night, Glenn Beck kicked off his program by showing off a couple of historical artifacts that he has acquired, including a handwritten copy of a speech delivered by John Wilkes Booth and an early edition of "Mein Kampf" signed by Adolf Hitler ... which he then tied to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's effort to ban the sale of sodas over sixteen ounces.
According to Beck, just as Booth and Hitler believed that they knew the proper solutions to the "crisis" they believed their nations faced, so too Bloomberg believes he is doing the right thing in trying solve the "crisis" of obesity.
"A lot of people have come in the past and said 'there's a crisis,'" Beck said, pointing to the Booth and Hitler documents, "We have to do something. We have to do something. That always leads you to bad places":
Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL) appeared on Washington Watch yesterday with Family Research Council Tony Perkins to discuss his legislation that “would spend $110 million a year for the next five years on grants to abstinence programs around the country,” funding that would have otherwise gone towards comprehensive sexual education. He claimed that while the Obama administration backs “very dangerous and experimental education programs,” programs pushing abstinence-only-until-marriage curriculum have “incredible success records.”
Far from having “incredible success records,” abstinence programs have a history of failure. Reports have consistently found that there is no evidence to support the claim that abstinence-only-until-marriage programs reduce premarital sex or teen pregnancy; on the other hand, studies show that comprehensive sex-ed decreases the rate of teen pregnancy and STDs.
Perkins: What you’re doing is you’re redirecting money from a program that has negative consequences and redirecting some of it into one that has proven to have positive outcomes.
Hultgren: That’s right, yes. Like you said, this has changed dramatically under President Obama and his administration and Kathleen Sebelius. Basically they see it as a slush fund that they can use however they want to and they are putting it into some very dangerous and experimental education programs for younger and younger children. What this would do is money that is already there would put it into programs that we know work. You look at the track record for abstinence education, incredible success records, kids really want to make good choices and if we give them good information it will just help them make these good choices.
The news broke this morning that Florida Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll has resigned from office over her ties to an organization that ran a series of "internet cafes" in the state that is now at the center of a racketeering investigation. According to reports, Carroll had close ties this organization and even appeared in a commercial for it in 2010.
These "cafes" are often borderline casinos that exist in a legal gray area by claiming that they are merely offering "sweepstakes" to customers.
So it is just a little too perfect that back in 2011, Carroll was a featured speaker at a Faith and Freedom Coalition event ahead of a Republican presidential debate in Florida, organized by none other than Ralph Reed, where she declared that America needs "good, solid Christians to step up and lead this country on a proper moral path":
You know the Bible says faith is believing in what is not seen, today unfortunately many in the media would like nothing better to ridicule Christians: they promote 'The Da Vinci Code,' they place doubt in the public’s mind that Christ was not risen and they condemn the 'Passion of Christ,' yet they sensationalize stories that call for the end of prayer in school and removing the name of God from our country’s pledge. Ladies and gentlemen, these are very sad times when we allow the minority to poison the minds of the majority. This is exactly what dictators and socialist rulers did.
Man does not have all the answers, some of our political leaders bow down to scientists and let them have the stage to push their evolution, but there’s nothing, nothing a scientist can make, that is exactly like what God creates.
Trust Him to give you the strength to fight back against those who want to take God out of our country. Trust Him to give you the wisdom to speak out against injustice and blasphemy of His name. Trust God to guide your path to bring about a righteous government. …
Ladies and gentlemen, Christianity is in a fight and it is one of the greatest trials we have seen in modern times. Without a doubt, America and her people are in grave need of prayer, divine guidance, protection, to have good, solid Christians to step up and lead this country on a proper moral path. I firmly believe that if we magnify God, our problems will be minimized.
Former U.S. Senator and current Heritage Foundation president Jim DeMint appeared on Today’s Issues with American Family Association head Tim Wildmon where he reiterated his “no compromise” mantra by arguing that President Obama and his allies are so extreme that there is no point in working with them.
When Wildmon asked if Obama even “has a conscience,” DeMint pointed to a 2008 quote by Rahm Emmanuel, whom DeMint mistakenly called “Raul Emmanuel,” about the financial crisis to suggest that Obama and his allies are deliberately creating crises in order to implement sweeping policy changes.
“What they understand on the liberal side is that the failures of their policies actually have empowered them to actually advance their policies,” DeMint told Wildmon, “A financial/economic crisis allows the president to reconfigure our whole economic and cultural system to redistribute the wealth the way he wants.”
After blaming the left for the 2008 financial crisis, DeMint argued that Obama has a “secular socialistic view” and that his “policies hurt people.” Consequently, people with a “faith and freedom view” shouldn’t even bother working with him.
It has become pretty obvious by this point that David Barton simply does not care that various claims he makes as part of his standard presentation are demonstrably false; he will simply continue to repeat them as fact because they are useful in promoting his right-wing political agenda.
As we have noted five times already, Barton repeatedly insists that the Constitution is filled with multiple "direct quotations" out of the Bible, insisting that anyone who doesn't see them is simply "biblically illiterate;" an assertion he made again while speaking at Fellowship Reformed Church in Hudsonville, Michigan over the weekend:
And if you know the Bible and you know and read the Constitution, you will see Bible verses and Bible phrases all over the Constitution. It quotes Bible phrases everywhere. People today say 'oh, it's a godless Constitution, it's a secular document.' If somebody tells me it's a secular document, I know that they're biblically illiterate. They don't recognize a Bible verse when they see one because the Constitution is loaded up with direct quotations out of the Bible.
Of course, the only person who is illiterate here is Barton himself, as he is apparently unable to comprehend what the phrase "direct quoation" since none of the evidence he provides represent, in any way, "direct quotations."
But Barton wasn't done spreading falsehoods in this presentation, as he also repeated the claim that the Supreme Court ended mandatory Bible reading in public schools because it was causing brain damage to students:
[In 1963] the Supreme Court said no more Bible in schools. Now why would they do that? We have 320 years, literally, of the Bible in school; the Supreme Court itself said this is without any historical precedent. There is no historical precedent in our history for not having the Bible in schools, but it's time to take it out. Why would they take it out?
Well, the Court explained why they would take it out. As a matter of fact, they called on the testimony of a psychologist - they didn't have any historical precedent, they didn't have any legal precedent, but Dr. Solomon Grayzel told them what was going to happen if kids read the Bible in schools and they said 'that's what we thought.' And so here's the quote the Supreme Court pointed out in its decision on why we took the Bible out of schools; they said 'if portions of the New Testament were read without explanation, they could be, and had been, psychologically harmful to the child.'
We've now discovered the Bible causes brain damage; we can't let you kids suffer brain damage, we've got to stop the brain damage. That's the reason given by the Supreme Court on why the Bible went out of schools; it was psychological harm to children.
As we pointed out before, if you actually read the ruling in the case, you will find that the Supreme Court did not cite this as the reason for ending mandatory Bible reading in schools, rather the Court was merely describing the road the case had taken through the court system, noting that Dr. Grayzel's testimony had been heard during the initial trial.
Beyond that, Barton intentionally misrepresents the point of Grayzel's testimony itself, which was to note that forced Bible reading from a Christian perspective in public schools was potentially damaging to Jewish students:
Expert testimony was introduced by both appellants and appellees at the first trial, which testimony was summarized by the trial court as follows:
Dr. Solomon Grayzel testified that there were marked differences between the Jewish Holy Scriptures and the Christian Holy Bible, the most obvious of which was the absence of the New Testament in the Jewish Holy Scriptures. Dr. Grayzel testified that portions of the New Testament were offensive to Jewish tradition, and that, from the standpoint of Jewish faith, the concept of Jesus Christ as the Son of God was "practically blasphemous." He cited instances in the New Testament which, assertedly, were not only sectarian in nature but tended to bring the Jews into ridicule or scorn. Dr. Grayzel gave as his expert opinion that such material from the New Testament could be explained to Jewish children in such a way as to do no harm to them. But if portions of the New Testament were read without explanation, they could be, and, in his specific experience with children, Dr. Grayzel observed, had been, psychologically harmful to the child, and had caused a divisive force within the social media of the school.
In both of these cases, it has been demonstrated time and again that the claims Barton is making are irrefutably false, but he simply does not care and continues to repeat them as truth as he delivers his pseudo-historical presentations to conservative audiences all across the country.
Family Research Council senior fellow Pat Fagan appeared alongside Tony Perkins, the head of FRC, on Washington Watch yesterday to discuss his article which claims that Eisenstadt v. Baird, the 1972 case that overturned a Massachusetts law banning the distribution of contraceptives to unmarried people, may rank “as the single most destructive decision in the history of the Court.”
Fagan argued that the Supreme Court decision was wrong because it effectively meant that “single people have the right to engage in sexual intercourse.” “Society never gave young people that right, functioning societies don’t do that, they stop it, they punish it, they corral people, they shame people, they do whatever,” Fagan said.
The court decided that single people have the right to contraceptives. What’s that got to do with marriage? Everything, because what the Supreme Court essentially said is single people have the right to engage in sexual intercourse. Well, societies have always forbidden that, there were laws against it. Now sure, single people are inclined to push the fences and jump over them, particularly if they are in love with each other and going onto marriage, but they always knew they were doing wrong. In this case the Supreme Court said, take those fences away they can do whatever they like, and they didn’t address at all what status children had, what status the commons had, by commons I mean the rest of the United States, have they got any standing in this case? They just said no, singles have the right to contraceptives we mean singles have the right to have sex outside of marriage. Brushing aside millennia, thousands and thousands of years of wisdom, tradition, culture and setting in motion what we have.
It’s not the contraception, everybody thinks it’s about contraception, but what this court case said was young people have the right to engage in sex outside of marriage. Society never gave young people that right, functioning societies don’t do that, they stop it, they punish it, they corral people, they shame people, they do whatever. The institution for the expression of sexuality is marriage and all societies always shepherded young people there, what the Supreme Court said was forget that shepherding, you can’t block that, that’s not to be done.
Larry Klayman has been anything but shy about warning that violent resistance might be necessary to stop President Obama's "mission to enslave the nation." So last night, Alan Colmes invited Klayman onto his radio program to discuss his worries that black helicopters have been firing practice rounds on American cities, during which he asserted that he believes that Obama does not like Jews, the wealthy, people of faith, or white people ... or, for that matter, that Obama was even born in this country:
Klayman: I'm frightened for this country. I really [am.] I don't feel that he represents the majority of Americans. I have a Jewish background, Alan, like you do and what I've seen in the last four years is someone who has a disdain, I believe, for Jewish people and Israel.
Colmes: Why did he have a Jewish Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel? Why does he have so many Jewish advisers? It doesn't make any sense.
Klayman: This is a bad analogy and I'll take it a little too far. Many times throughout history, Jewish people have been their own worst enemy. I mean, we had Karl Marx. We had people who were in and around Adolf Hitler even ... The fact that these people are around him, they are just simply cover.
The references to rich people, the constant 'we've got to pay our fair share,' it's kind of like we're talking about reparations. It does lead one to think - and we should be allowed to talk about it too; you know, white people should be able to raise these issues just like black people legitimately raised them over the years in terms of racism - is I believe this guy has a tinge of racism towards whites and he wants to pay reparations. I don't believe that he likes Jewish people ... I don't think he likes people of faith.
Colmes: What have you seen that has you so scared?
Klayman: What I have seen is, and I never thought it was even imaginable when I was fighting [Bill] Clinton, I do believe that it is possible now. I think that Obama knows that at some point a significant portion of this country is going to rise up and possibly become violent and I hope and pray that that does not happen.
Colmes: What are you basing this on?
Klayman: Well, what I've seen in recent weeks are black helicopters over the streets in Miami and Chicago and Houston, firing practice rounds ...
Colmes: Whose helicopters are these?
Klayman: They are government helicopters that have been doing that.
Colmes: Why has this not been widely reported?
Klayman: It is starting to become widely publicized.
Colmes: Where can I get documentation of it?
Klayman: Take a look at WorldNetDaily.com.
Colmes: Oh, WoldNetDaily; you mean the people who think that he wasn't born here?
Klayman: Well, I don't think he was born here either.
It’s that time of year again when Girl Scouts sell cookies… and right-wing activists attack the Girl Scouts. Today, Linda Harvey of Mission America took offense that the Scouts support “radical feminists” and “homosexual lifestyles” and “feature prominent female homosexuals in some of their materials.” She alleged that they dismiss “authentic morality, Christianity, conservative viewpoints and just plain old motherhood” and “sexual self-restraint” while at the same time promoting “an attitude of suspicion toward males.”
This is not at all the way the organization started, but Girl Scout materials and programs support role models like radical feminists Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan, they support homosexual lifestyles and feature prominent female homosexuals in some of their materials. At the same time virtually absent is respect for authentic morality, Christianity, conservative viewpoints and just plain old motherhood. It’s one more way that girls are being taught that unless you have an attitude of suspicion toward males in general, unless you bring home a paycheck and unless you have a worldview based on self-indulgence with never a notion of sacrifice, you as a woman are really diminished in worth, sexual self-restraint or restraint of just your own female pride should be avoided at all costs.
The Southern Baptist Convention’s polling arm LifeWay is out with a new poll revealing widespread support for gay rights, particularly among young people. According to the survey, a clear majority of Americans believe that “homosexuality is a civil rights issue like gender, race and age,” agree that same-sex marriage is “inevitable” and oppose employment discrimination against gays and lesbians.
The denomination is a fierce critic of marriage equality and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and last year passed a resolution “opposing the idea that gay rights are the same as civil rights.”
Richard Land, the denomination’s top political spokesman, has claimed that the Devil is behind homosexuality and warned that gay rights will lead to divine judgment and “paganization.” While the SBC believes it is wrong to consider gay rights a civil rights issues, Land compared his own anti-gay activism to Martin Luther King Jr.’s leadership of the Civil Rights Movement.
Key findings from the poll include:
The poll also found that women, young people and people with college degrees were more likely to favor gay rights.
LifeWay’s survey appears to line up with a new bipartisan analysis of exit polls which found that opposition to marriage equality is concentrated among the elderly, white evangelical Christians and people without college degrees.
It is no secret that Glenn Beck fancies himself as some sort of historical soothsayer capable of seeing parallels between the past and what is happening today in order to make predictions about the future.
On last night's program, Beck proclaimed that Sen. Rand Paul's filibuster last week the modern day equivalent of Sen. Charles Sumner's 1856 "Crime against Kansas" speech, which resulted in him nearly being beaten to death on the Senate floor. Likening the criticism Paul received from Senators like Lindsey Graham and John McCain to the savage beating Sumner received, Beck went on to declare that just as the Republican Party went from nonexistence in 1854 to capturing control of Congress and the White House by 1860, Paul's filibuster would one day be seen by future historians as a watershed moment and predicting that they "will look back in a hundred years and say 'this speech ignited a global freedom movement'" that eventually won the White House.
"You were here to hear the heartbeat when the Tea Party started," Beck declared. "And last week, you witnessed the birth":
During the debate over the Shepard-Byrd Hate Crimes Prevention Act, Religious Right groups like the American Family Association warned that the law would “criminalize negative comments concerning homosexuality” and “take away our religious freedoms.”
Of course, none of that happened, but that hasn’t stopped anti-gay activists from making the exact same false claims again and hoping more people will fall for it.
Yesterday, AFA president Tim Wildmon appeared on The Janet Mefferd Show and alleged that if the Supreme Court overturned Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) then we will see “persecution against Christians” and restrictions on the freedom of speech.
Wildmon: You’re headed down the road of persecution against Christians who believe in the Bible as their standard for moral behavior. In Canada now they have different rules there where you can’t even criminalize the lifestyle itself or you’ll be charged with a hate crime. You know that’s the road we’re headed down if these laws, if DOMA is struck down, if Prop 8 is struck down, then you’re headed for control of speech, even if it’s religious speech.
Ironically, the AFA’s own legal counsel, Pat Vaughn, admitted that “the Defense of Marriage Act is probably unconstitutional.”
Intrepid FrontPageMag reporter Mark Tapson didn't quite find what he was looking for when he infiltrated the Muslim Student Association’s annual West Coast conference last month...but, he alleges, that's just more proof of a secret Muslim Brotherhood plot to "radicalize" college students.
Tapson told Janet Mefferd in a radio interview Friday that far from finding anything “radical” or “damning” at the conference, “it was largely very innocuous.” He had high hopes for a workshop called “Islamatics,” for instance, but found that it was just about Islam and American politics. He even took pains to register for the conference under a “variation” of his name, only to be admitted with no questions asked.
But Tapson has a theory about why the MSA’s conference was so “innocuous.” It’s all part of Muslim Brotherhood plan, he tells Mefferd, to capture “the hearts and minds of the young.” This campus organizing and community-building, he says, “radicalizes them and it steers them toward further radicalization down the line.”
Tapson: Um, there were some lesser speakers who also got political. There was a workshop called “Islamatics,” which I expected to be more interesting than it actually was. It was basically a Washington, DC, Muslim talking about lining up Islamic ideals with the current political parties, ‘bridging the gap between their religion and their votes,’ as he put it.
Tapson: But, you know, it was largely very innocuous. I mean, there was nothing beyond what I’ve already told you, really. There was very little that you’d consider radical. Highly politicized, yes, but nothing damning.
Mefferd: I think this is very true that, from what you’ve reported, that there wasn’t a lot of radical talk and it was kind of innocuous in a lot of respects, but you point out that for the Muslim Brotherhood front groups that organized this thing, it serves as a very successful recruitment and radicalization tool. Is that really, at root, the reason for the conference, or at least a primary reason for the conference, that other groups, CAIR or ISNA or, you know, whatever it is can have contact with a younger generation?
Tapson: Oh, absolutely. It’s all about the younger generation. And, politicizing and organizing that younger generation in campus groups and strengthening their sense of community as Muslims, strengthening their campus activism, that’s all, that’s a very important goal because it radicalizes them and it steers them toward further radicalization down the line. So, yeah, it's all about capturing the hearts and minds of the young.
Mefferd: Oh, wow.
Bryan Fischer is a big fan of the line of argumentation that gays already have full marriage equality because they have the same right to marry someone of the opposite sex as anyone else.
He reiterated this argument on his radio program today, adding that gay marriage is really "inequality under the law" because it grants to gay couples "a special carve-out for themselves that is not available to pedophiles and polygamists" and others who "engage in sexually abnormal behavior":
End Times fanatic Rick Wiles of TruNews on Friday hosted notorious anti-Muslim activist Steven Emerson to discuss how the Muslim Brotherhood is coming to power in the US and around the globe. Emerson alleged that members of Congress, specifically Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) are “in the pocket” of Islamist groups which are using “stealth jihad.”
Emerson: They’re using what I call legal insurgency, it is stealth jihad. What they are doing is legal—
Wiles: I agree, that’s what I’m saying, it’s a mental thing, they are changing the mindset of the American people, it is jihad.
Emerson: They are trying to change the mindset and they’ve already made inroads in Congress, they’ve got certain Senators in Congress like Keith Ellison, Sen. Dick Durbin and others who are in their pocket. I know this, I can prove it.
He also claimed that the Muslim Brotherhood has “penetrated virtually all institutions in the United States, wittingly or unwittingly,” including the federal government, news media, entertainment industry, book publishers and academia, as they back the group’s “ultra-fascist ideology.”
Like fellow anti-Muslim firebrand Kamal Saleem, who has maintained that he discussed plots with professors on how to recruit their students into terrorism, Emerson added that professors teach from a “radical Islamist” perspective.
Emerson: The Muslim Brotherhood has penetrated virtually all institutions in the United States, wittingly or unwittingly: the White House; the Department of Justice; Hollywood; the media; the State Department; the publishing industry.
Wiles: Why carryout terrorist acts if you can just quietly take over the country?
Emerson: That’s exactly what they said.
Wiles: And they are succeeding.
Emerson: Yes they are. They are succeeding—they’ve already been able to succeed in cutting these Faustian deals with the media where the ultra-fascist ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood is totally consistent with the ultra-left-wing ideology of the media and it’s reflected on campuses in academia and student groups, it’s reflected in books and it’s also reflected in policies by the U.S. government.
Emerson: What are they teaching in academia today? Who are the professors? What are the student groups promoting? It’s a radical Islamist view of the United States and Israel, it contrives to present western civilizational values as morally equivalent to radical Islamic fundamentalist values, nothing could be further from the truth.
Just last week, the New York Times ran a profile of a new 'kinder and gentler' Focus on the Family under current president Jim Daly who purports to be trying to change the tone of the debates over contentious issues like abortion and marriage equality while defending his conservative Christian positions on such issues.
Daly operates under the impression that so long as he approaches these debates in a gentle, thoughtful, and prayerful manner, he can open others up to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, make converts, and ultimately win people over to his side of the argument.
Today, on Focus on the Family's radio program, Daly and co-host John Fuller welcomed George Mason University Law School professor Helen Alvare onto the program to discuss "The Erosion of Marriage in America," which Alavre blamed on everything from no-fault divorce to the practice of in vitro fertilization.
And while Daly, Fuller, and Alvare were all very careful to continually insist that they were speaking out of love and respect, when it gets down to it, Alvare said, it is ridiculous to think that the Constitution contains any sort of right to marriage equality and so the state simply needs to tell gay couples that "marriage is not in the cards for you":
I don't think that the Supreme Court wants to live through another forty years of post-bad decision making like they did with Roe v. Wade. There is no question that Constitution does not textually have a right to same-sex marriage. There is no question that it has been banned - you know, we only have a few states allowing it now. To say that it's a constitutional right would be ridiculous and I don't think they want to be fighting over it for the next forty years.
There is a reason why, pre-Christianity as well as today, the community of citizens has always understood that there is something different about what a man and a woman do when they are romantically interested together and that naturally leads them to say I want you for my whole life. The fact that this natural connection, older than Christianity, leads to children; the fact that children seem to need, empirically speaking, a mother and a father is why whatever the state wants to say to gay and lesbian citizens - and hopefully they say we love you and we're not going to discriminate against you - they cannot say what you do and what opposite sex couples do has the same intrinsic outcomes and therefore interest of the state. It simply is not commensurate.
We can also say one final thing, which is when the state is tempted to say this, what you do, opposite sex couple, and what a same-sex couple does, which they can talk about a long-term emotional commitment that we have seen if we reduce marriage to people's emotional feelings, we get more divorce, we get less marriage, we get more children outside of marriage and the poor pay more. We don't have to speculate about this any more, we have seen it. There has been a horrid natural experiment in our country; we know what we are talking about.
We love you. We won't discriminate against you as gay and lesbian persons, God willing, in the future. But marriage is not in the cards for you.
This seems to pretty well sum up the new approach from Focus on the Family, which is to insist that gays are loved and respected and should not be discriminated against ... but that they just shouldn't ever be allowed to get married.
Often lost in the debate over marriage equality is the fact that many of its leading opponents aren’t just interested in keeping the status quo on marriage. Instead, they're seeking to reverse what they see as a decline that began with laws granting greater freedom to women within marriages – specifically, the right to no-fault divorce.
In a conversation with radio host Janet Mefferd Friday, anti-gay writer Frank Turek responded to marriage equality supporters who point to divorce rates among straight couples. “You don’t make the car better by slashing another tire on it,” he said. “ You go back and repair the first tire. And I’m the first one to say that the bigger problem right now is no-fault divorce.”
Turek: I would agree with them that heterosexuals have debased it, heterosexuals have slashed one of the tires of marriage. But that’s not an argument for slashing another tire.
Mefferd: Good point, good point.
Turek: You don’t make the car better by slashing another tire on it. You go back and repair the first tire. And I’m the first one to say that the bigger problem right now is no-fault divorce.
Mefferd: Ah, yes.
Turek: But that is not an argument for same-sex marriage, in fact it’s an argument against it. Why? Because it shows you that when you liberalize marriage laws, you actually have a negative effect on society, which is what the no-fault marriage laws have done. So if you’re going to make marriage even more liberal, if you’re going to even further tear down the definition of marriage and make it totally genderless now, you’re going to have even worse results. You’re going to have even more illegitimacy, more kids that aren’t taken care of.
Now, I know the same-sex marriage advocates are going to say, ‘What, so same-sex marriage is going to do to your marriage?’ Well, it’s not going to do anything to my personal marriage, but it’s going to debase the institution of marriage into the future, make it a genderless institution, and that will hurt children and hurt the whole country.
We’re sorry to report that unless you are a certain Texas businessman, you are not the winner of the million dollar gift from God that Pat Robertson spoke into existence last month on the 700 Club. Robertson reported today that he “talked to a businessman a couple of days ago” who got a million-dollar check from BP shortly after Robertson announced that God would “supply a million dollars” to a 700 Club viewer. “His income went down at a particular point of time in the Gulf and they were paying off everybody who had a dip in income, just gave him a check,” Robertson explained.
But this mystery check from BP that Robertson prophesied just may be related to the fact that BP is handing out checks to businesses near the Gulf of Mexico as part of the compensation deal the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.