Fighting the Right

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher: Obama is 'Pandering to Radical Islamic Forces' and to Blame for Ambassador's Death

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) is joining Mitt Romney in accusing President Obama of “sympathizing” with radical Islamists, telling Frank Gaffney in an interview yesterday that the attack on the embassies in Libya and Egypt are a result “of years of pandering to radical Islamic forces which has been conducted by the President of the United States himself.” According to Rohrabacher, Obama has only tried to “apologize” and “is incapable of being aggressive” when it comes to fighting radical Islamists.

Later, Rohrabacher even falsely claimed that Obama refuses to “even condemn them for their murderous activities” and blamed the President for the death of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya: “now even our ambassadors are being assassinated and this is a result of that attitude being presented on our behalf by this administration.”

Listen:

We are reaping the rewards of years of pandering to radical Islamic forces which has been conducted by the President of the United States himself. His first act of president was to go over in the Middle East and basically apologize to all of these different countries and various groups of Islamic leaders throughout the Middle East and basically leaving the impression that he believed that the bad blood between us is caused because the United States being insensitive to Islam. Well, that was interpreted as weakness, the fact that since then we haven't been able to back up the Iranians who are struggling against their mullah dictatorship, how many times have we criticized and actually come down aggressively against those people in the Islamic world who are killing Christians? We can't even do that. So we have a President of the United States who is incapable of being aggressive and an out loud and angry voice putting radical Islam where it belongs.

...

Mitt Romney by stepping up and pointing out that you do not apologize for standing up for freedom of speech or freedom of religion, you don't apologize to a radical Islamic group that murders other human beings because they disagree on their religious values or want to express that they think Islam may be incorrect here and there or even basically someone who wants to have a very heavy attack on the basic fundamentals of Islam in terms of intellectual discourse. Instead what we've got is we have to walk on eggs, we have to be so sensitive that we can't condemn those people when they're out in the name of retaliating against us for disagreeing with Islam. We can't even condemn them for their murderous activities, and now even our ambassadors are being assassinated and this is a result of that attitude being presented on our behalf by this administration.

Paul Ryan at Summit that Makes Mockery of Diplomacy and Terrorism

Michelle Bachmann, speaking at the Values Voter Summit this morning, quickly one-upped Mitt Romney in pinning blame on President Obama for the violent protests in Libya and Egypt and deaths of four Americans in Libya. She accused Obama of appeasing the Muslim Brotherhood and opening our borders to terrorists. Not long after, Paul Ryan also attacked Obama over foreign policy: 

Amid all these threats and dangers, what we do not see is steady, consistent American leadership. In the days ahead, and in the years ahead, American foreign policy needs moral clarity and firmness of purpose. Only by the confident exercise of American influence are evil and violence overcome.
But here’s the thing. Ryan and Bachmann are speaking at a Religious Right conference that is making a mockery of diplomacy and even the threat of terrorism. Consider the following:
  • the video that sparked the unrest in Egypt and Libya was created and promoted by anti-Muslim activists who have worked with backers of Bachmann’s effort to purge the U.S. government of Muslim Americans and key players in the effort to block the so-called Ground Zero mosque (e.g. ACT! for America and the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission)
  • in July, misinformation promoted by Bachmann and two upcoming speakers at the Values Voter Summit, Frank Gaffney and Jerry Boykin, sparked aggressive protests against American diplomats in Egypt, including Secretary Clinton, whose motorcade was pelted by protestors – Boykin and Gaffney have been the leading forces behind Bachmann’s witch hunt against Muslim Americans in the U.S. government
Taken together, this suggests more than a lack of seriousness. It suggests that many Religious Right activists are far more interested in fighting a holy war than they are with diplomacy, peace or religious freedom. Unfortunately for the rest of us, we have the live in the same world as them.
 
The fake terrorist I referred to above is identified on the schedule as Kamal Saleem, but his real name is Khodor Shami. He claims that he was a Muslim Brotherhood operative who “came to the United States of America…to destroy this country” and crossed the Canadian border and “brought weapon caches right through cities.” He also claims to have “completed his first bloody terror mission into Israel for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) at the age of seven.”
 
Saleem is widely known to be a fraud. Yet he’s being presented by the Family Research Council as the real deal and appears next to Ryan on the featured speakers page, with “former terrorist” under his name. Here’s one of his promotional videos:
 

Bennett: The Press Attacked Romney on Libya and Tried to 'Kill This Truth in the Womb'

During his astonishingly smug introduction of Paul Ryan at the Values Voter Summit, self-styled "values czar" Bill Bennett blasted the Obama administration's response to the attacks in Libya and Egypt while hailing Mitt Romney's crass attempt to exploit them for political gain as a bold stand for truth.

After falsely claiming that the administration responded to the attacks "by shuddering and shaking and wondering at the consequences of our First Amendment," Bennett then declared that the fact that Romney's response was so widely pilloried as tactless and inappropriate by the media was itself proof that what he sad was true because the press sought to "kill this truth in the womb; something it is well-practiced at":

Birthers at Kansas State Board Could Keep Obama Off the Ballot

Top Republican officials in Kansas are considering removing President Obama from the ballot at the request of “birther” activists who believe that the president wasn’t born in the United States. Kansas’ Board of Objections, which includes Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Attorney General Derek Schmidt andLt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, haven’t made any decisions yet but they say they’re taking the challenge seriously.

This isn’t Kobach’s first brush with birtherism. It’s also not his first brush with extremism that targets people of color. Kobach, who once worked for the nativist anti-immigrant group FAIR, has been a leader in pushing extreme anti-immigrant laws throughout the country, including draconian measures in Arizona and Alabama.

Kobach is also an informal advisor to Mitt Romney.

TPM reports:

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, an informal advisor to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, said on Thursday he and his fellow members of a state board were considering removing President Barack Obama from the Kansas ballot this November.

Kobach is part of the State Objections Board along with Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, all Republicans. The Topeka Capital-Journal reported that on Thursday the board agreed consider whether to take Obama off the ballot because they said they lacked sufficient evidence about his birth certificate.

“I don’t think it’s a frivolous objection,” Kobach said, according to the Capital-Journal. “I do think the factual record could be supplemented.”

The board is looking at a complaint filed by Joe Montgomery, of Manhattan, Kan., who claimed the Obama is not a natural born U.S. citizen and so is ineligible to be president. The man appears to be part of a group of conspiracy theorists known as “birthers,” who deny Obama’s birth certificate is real.

PFAW

Cameron: America Was Modeled on the 'Hebrew Republic Under Moses'

History has never been Kirk Cameron's strong suit, which can probably be partly attributed to the fact that he relies on "experts" like David Barton for his information.

So it didn't come as much of a surprise when Cameron delivered another rather strange history lesson today while speaking at the Values Voter Summit when he proclaimed that America has been so successful because our Founding Fathers relied "on the very eternal principles that had not been tested and tried from the ground up for three thousand years since the ancient Hebrew republic under Moses":

Speaking at Values Voter Summit, Paul Ryan Gives Stamp of Approval to Bigotry

Washington, DC – People For the American Way today challenged the Romney campaign for its decision to send vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan to speak today at the Values Voter Summit, an event organized by groups that regularly push false and demeaning smears about gays and lesbians, Muslim-Americans and others. These groups also push extreme anti-woman policies, including defending Rep. Todd Akin after his "legitimate rape" comments.

Earlier this week, a coalition of human rights groups, including People For the American Way Foundation, urged Ryan and other elected officials not to lend legitimacy to these groups, including the Family Research Council and the American Family Association, by speaking at the Summit.

More information on the FRC, AFA and other groups participating in the Summit can be found at RightWingWatch.org.

“By speaking at the Values Voter Summit, Paul Ryan sends a clear message: a Romney-Ryan administration has decided to embrace the entrenched bigotry advocated by the farthest of the far right,” said Michael Keegan, President of People For the American Way.

“The Family Research Council and the American Family Association are not mainstream groups,” continued Keegan. “The FRC frequently and falsely links homosexuality to pedophilia. The AFA has claimed that gay men were responsible for the Holocaust. Both have defended laws at home and abroad that criminalize homosexuality. These are not innocent differences of opinion; they are full-scale efforts to smear and denigrate LGBT Americans.

“What’s more, these groups back extreme anti-woman policies, and were among the first to jump to the defense of Rep. Todd Akin’s outrageous 'legitimate rape' comments. They also promote hostility toward Muslim-Americans, Mormons and other religious minorities. They advocate for an America that discriminates and excludes, and are trying their best to stop the tolerance and open-mindedness that Americans of both parties support. That’s a troubling message for a presidential campaign to embrace.”

###

Bachmann: Obama has 'Enforced Islamic Speech Codes Here in the United States'

Speaking this morning at the Values Voter Summit, Rep. Michele Bachmann dedicated her remarks to attacking the Obama administration for supposedly catering to radical Islam and that Muslim Brotherhood, citing a decision by the FBI to purge hundreds of anti-Muslim documents from its training materials as proof that the administration was enforcing "Islamic speech codes here in the United States":

Is Tony Perkins the Most Disingenuous Person on the Planet?

Well, in a world that includes Paul Ryan, maybe not.  But Perkins ensured his standing near the top of the list with his performance at the National Press Club on Wednesday.  Perkins heads an organization that excels in the kind of incendiary rhetoric he denounced from the podium.   I kept thinking about Bill Clinton’s recent characterization of Ryan: “It takes some brass to attack a guy for doing what you did.”
 
Perkins heads the Family Research Council, one of the Religious Right organizations that has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center for a long record of smearing LGBT people with false and denigrating rhetoric.  Perkins used his press club appearance to repeat his charge that it was irresponsible for SPLC and other groups to describe his organization that way.  He suggested that FRC’s critics had created a climate that contributed to the recent violence at FRC headquarters in downtown D.C.
 
Let me say that it was genuinely sobering and moving to hear Perkins describe the incident, in which a security guard who may have saved the lives of many FRC employees was shot while disarming a gunman.  No one should be put in the position of being hunkered down in their office in fear for their life.  No one should be subjected to violence for participating in the public arena.  At the time of the shooting, progressive and gay rights leaders immediately and unequivocally denounced the attack on FRC.
 
It is true that irresponsible and hateful speech can poison our public discourse. But in today’s political climate, that speech is most likely to come from right-wing groups and their allies.  I remember feeling nervous as well as outraged when Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, two days after the 9-11 attacks, blamed People For the American Way by name, as well as feminists, liberals, and others.  And the right’s rhetorical extremism has become supercharged since the election of President Obama.
 
The First Amendment does protect hateful and irresponsible speech.  But being free to participate in the public arena does not meaning being exempt from criticism.  And calling hateful speech hateful is not the same as actually promoting hatred toward a particular group of Americans.  We have noted before how quickly Perkins moved to exploit the shooting in an effort to discredit his opponents and deflect attention from his own group’s extreme record and rhetoric:
 
You don't have to look far.  Last year Perkins called gay-rights activists vile, hateful, pawns of Satan.  In 2010, Perkins responded to President Obama's call for civility on the issue of homosexuality by slamming the president for criticizing Uganda's kill-the-gays bill. Perkins described the infamous law as "enhanced penalties for crimes related to homosexuality" and an effort to "uphold moral conduct."  FRC spokespeople have supported laws criminalizing homosexuality overseas and here in the U.S.  
 
What does it even mean for Perkins to make a public commitment to advocate with civility and compassion when his guests at the head table include rhetorical bomb-throwers like Bishop Harry Jackson, who has said that gay rights advocates are trying to recruit young people “just like during the times of Hitler” and that gay marriage is part of a “satanic plot” to destroy the family, and Rep. Louie Gohmert, who participated in the McCarthyite smear of Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin and who says that President Obama “wants a dictatorship?” Or when he recently hired as his executive vice president retired Gen. Jerry Boykin, who has called for limits on American Muslims’ religious liberty and accuses Obama of using the health care reform law as cover to create a private army of Brownshirts?
 
Perkins also used his speech to promote this weekend’s Values Voter Summit, which is co-sponsored by organizations whose leaders regularly spout rhetoric that is often even more extreme than FRC’s -- about LGBT Americans, Muslims and other non-Christians, supporters of church-state separation and more.  Among the worst are the American Family Association, whose spokesman Bryan Fischer is such a torrent of bigotry that it cannot be easily condensed, and Liberty Counsel, whose Matt Barber purveys loathsome attacks on his political opponents, charging that satanic gay rights activists are “running interference for pedophiles” and charging that groups supporting church-state separation, like People For the American Way, are enemies of religious freedom.
 
Calling for civil discourse on the eve of the Values Voter Summit sounds like nothing more than a bad joke.  If Tony Perkins is at all sincere about his call for civility, this weekend would be a good time to start.
 

Who's Who at the Values Voter Summit 2012

This weekend Republican and conservative leaders, including GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, are set to address the Religious Right's Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C.

Boykin: FRC Didn't Kill the Shooter, So How Can it Be a Hate Group?

Today's episode of "WallBuilders Live" was dedicated entirely to attacking the Southern Poverty Law Center with David Barton repeatedly (and falsely) claiming that the SPLC had placed him on its "hate list" while guest Jerry Boykin reiterated his claims that the SPLC was “anti-American," "anti-Christian," and "anti-Semitic."

The most interesting revelation was when Boykin, along with Barton and co-host Rick Green, wondered how an organization like the Family Research Council could be classified as a hate group when, during last month's shooting at FRC headquarters, the building manager did not kill the shooter after he had disarmed him because God told him not to:

Boykin: Let me tell you a quick thing you may not even know; the day that the shooter came in here and shot our building manager who just happened to be sitting at the reception desk that day. The building manager, after being shot, wrestled him to the ground with one arm, took his pistol away from him, bleeding profusely and started to shoot him and he said to us "God told me not to kill that man."

Now I want you to think about that. We're the hate group but he said "God told me not to kill him." And he could have justifiably killed that guy right there that had just shot him.

...

Green: What a great response by that guy at FRC. I didn't realize ... man what a witness that he did the way that he responded.

Barton: The Lord said don't shoot him and we're the haters? Nobody would have said a thing if he had shot that guy that had just shot him and shattered his arm, he was under attack, self defense, he's got a perfect right, he's an officer, he can do that and the Lord says "hey, don't shoot that guy." And somehow we're the haters in this thing. How crazy is that?

E.W. Jackson and Jerry Boykin Call for a 'Mass Exodus' of Christians from the Democratic Party

On Monday, fringe Religious Right activist and failed Senate candidate E.W. Jackson hosted a press conference to "call for a mass Exodus of Christians from the Democrat party."

And Jackson kicked things off by doing just that, declaring that all Christians and Jews must leave the Democratic Party because "it has turned its back on us; it is time that we turn our back on it."  As proof, Jackson cited the plank supporting marriage equality in the party platform, saying that by including this, the Democratic Party has declared that the Bible is a lie and the God is a liar:

Jackson was immediately followed at the podium by none other than Jerry Boykin, who declared that the fact that the Democrats even had to debate whether to include any mention of God in the platform "should be something that wakes us all up to realize that we cannot be part of that; we will stand and be accountable if we support that."  Boykin went on to say that he will never endorse a party that supports marriage equality because the idea itself is "evil":

Jews Must Be Converted: FRC Vice President

Bad news for Eric Cantor. He’s speaking tomorrow at the Values Voter Summit, but he’s apparently still going to hell. Let me explain.

Jerry Boykin is the Executive Vice President of the Family Research Council and Tony Perkins’ right-hand man. FRC is hosting the far right conference that the House Majority Leader, who is Jewish, plans to address tomorrow.

Boykin, much like Bryan Fischer, has a penchant for saying exactly what’s on his mind – things which others know not to say, even when they’re thinking the same thing. While you may know Boykin from his prolific Muslim-bashing, he also has some interesting things to say about Jews.

In a 2009 speech on “Why We Must Stand with Israel,” Boykin spoke out against pastors who say that “the Jews don’t have to come to know Jesus,” complaining that those pastors were “destroying the efforts” to lead Jews to Christ:

Last year, Boykin said that “one of the most disgusting things I hear is for people to call Hitler the extreme Right” because he was “an extraordinarily off the scale leftist.” He then lamented that “many Jews in America, for example, can't identify with the Republican Party because they're called the party of the Right, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth."

Boykin also said that President Obama is creating a Hitler-sytle Brownshirt army to force Marxism on America. And in 2003, then-Lt. Gen. Boykin said that the U.S. was fighting a war “in the name of Jesus,” prompting a rebuke from the ADL and President Bush.

To be sure, the Religious Right hasn’t always had the best relations with American Jews. Jerry Falwell sparked a controversy in 1980 when he said that God “does not hear the prayers of unredeemed Gentiles or Jews.” He was speaking at a press conference in defense of the president of the Southern Baptist Convention, who had proclaimed that “God Almighty does not hear the prayer of a Jew.”

More recently, however, Religious Right leaders have been careful to stress Judeo-Christian values and avoid explicit attacks. Boykin, however, doesn’t have any use for such niceties.

Yet Boykin was able to meet recently with Mitt Romney, and he has three speaking slots during the conference. He’s even leading a panel on Israel with his good friend Kamal Saleem. Saleem, who is considered to be a fraud, describes himself as a former terrorist who “completed his first bloody terror mission into Israel for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) at the age of seven.”

All of this makes me wonder if Cantor’s folks did their homework before agreeing to speak tomorrow. Perhaps something will come up, and he’ll have to decline FRC’s invitation, much like Ann Romney and Cardinal Dolan have done. We’ll find out tomorrow.

 

Ann Romney Joins Cardinal Dolan In Declining Values Voter Summit Invitation

After we reported yesterday evening that Ann Romney was being touted on the Values Voter Summit lineup alongside Paul Ryan, the Romney campaign moved quickly to distance her from the event. They first disputed our report, which was entirely accurate and based on the Values Voter Summit website, and then denied that Ann Romney was ever planning to speak there in the first place. 

It certainly seemed to strike a nerve. Apparently a gay-bashing conference is just fine for Paul Ryan but off-limits for Ann Romney.
 
That begs the question of why Ann Romney was listed in the first place. As I wrote yesterday, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan were listed for weeks on the speakers page, as were many others. When Cardinal Dolan made it clear that he would not be attending, his photo was removed. Ann Romney, however, was never listed on that page.
 
With the conference less than a week out, the Family Research Council posted the schedule and pushed highlights to daybooks for press planning purposes. And suddenly there was Ann Romney closing out the kickoff session with Paul Ryan.
 
An FRC spokesman told Buzzfeed that Ann Romney had been invited but was not confirmed. I, for one, find it hard to believe that FRC pushed out Ann Romney’s name to the media without, at the very least, an understanding with the campaign, but we can’t know for sure.
 
What we do know is that Ann Romney declined the invitation, perhaps as recently as last night, and the Romney campaign went into overdrive to distance her from the event. Late last night, her name was removed from the conference website.
 
Meanwhile Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor are still speaking on Friday.

 

Fischer Demands Mass Public Executions in Response to Libya Attack

On his radio program today, Bryan Fischer declared that the attack on the US Consulate in Libya in which the US Ambassador and three staff were killed was nothing short of "an act of war," proclaiming that President Obama's declaration that justice will be done means nothing "until every member of the mob that killed these Americans in cold blood is hung from the nearest bridge by the neck until dead": 

Once Again, David Barton Rewrites Modern History

A few weeks back, we wrote a post noting that David Barton's supporters and defenders had been saying that the criticism of his pseudo-scholarship simply boiled down to disagreements over matters of interpretation. We agreed and pointed out that Barton's documented inability to accurately "interpret" events and information is precisely the problem.

And today Barton again demonstrated the fundamental disregard he has for facts or accuracy when he and co-host Rick Green welcomed Rep. Louie Gohmert onto "WallBuilders Live" to defend the witch hunt that he and several other Republicans members of Congress launched against Huma Abedin under the guise of investigating the Muslim's Brotherhood's infiltration of the government.

Here is how Barton framed it:

And so what happened is you have some really high people in the State Department that, it turns out, man they've got some real direct ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.

And so what happens is Louie [Gohmert,] and Michele [Bachmann,] and Trent Franks and some others write a letter and say "have you guys actually investigated these ties?" And so all they did was ask a question and of course the administration when they got that letter, instead of answering the question, they released it to the media and said "look what these guys are doing, it's a witch hunt."

And so they suddenly get attacked for having accused a person of being a part of the Muslim Brotherhood and that's clearly not what the letter said, the letter is out there, easy to read.

On one level, Barton is correct: the letter is out there and easy to read ... but not because the administration leaked it to the media, but because Michele Bachmann posted it on her website!

As a matter of fact, Bachmann and crew sent five different letters to the Inspectors General of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice and the Department of State in which they named several high-ranking advisors who are alleged to have "extensive ties to the Muslim Brotherhood."

So it seems that Barton's "interpretation" of events is pretty accurate - except for the two central claims of his statement.

As we have said several times before, if Barton cannot be relied upon to accurately "interpret" information pertaining to recent events that anyone with access to Google can easily check and verify,  why should anyone trust anything that he says about complex events in early American history?

American Who Sparked Libya, Egypt Unrest Hates Obama, Hearts the GOP

Morris Sadek, an Egyptian-American anti-Muslim activist, managed in one week’s time to take an overlooked YouTube video featuring a lame attack on Islam and turn it into a flashpoint with violent extremists, with deadly consequences. As the New York Times reported last night, Sadek drew attention to the obscure video clip “in an Arabic-language blog post and an e-mail newsletter in English publicizing the latest publicity stunt of the Florida pastor Terry Jones, reviled in the Muslim world for burning copies of the Koran.” Within days the clip was making the rounds in Egypt, prompting denunciations from politicians and generating press coverage, and culminating in protests and a deadly attack in Libya.

Sadek, who has worked with Jones in the past, says he is fighting for the rights of his fellow Coptic Christians in Egypt. Unfortunately he seems much more focused on attacking Muslims than helping the Copts. Sadek pulled his Facebook profile around 1 pm today, but we were able to take a look beforehand. Here’s what we found.
 
Sadek is a supporter of ACT! for America, which believes that President Obama has embraced the Muslim Brotherhood. The group rallied its supporters last month behind Michelle Bachmann’s anti-Muslim witch hunt against Huma Abedin and others. Here’s Sadek with ACT! For America president Brigitte Gabriel at one of the group’s 2010 events.
 
Sadek is a man of many interests. He’s a member of these groups, among many others: Islam is of the Devil, Warriors of Christ, and OBAMA IS THE WORST PRESIDENT EVER! Agree?. Sadek is also a fan of the Republican Party, George Bush, Allen West (for president no less!), and number of other Islamophobic, conservative and/or Republican institutions and leaders. Ironically enough, he’s also a fan of the American embassy in Cairo, which was overrun by the protests that he sparked:
Now to be clear, Sadek has every right to carry out his work, and the violent extremists behind yesterday’s attack bear full responsibility for their actions. But we can and should hold Sadek to account for his own bigoted views and actions, which have poured gasoline on the fire and made it that much more difficult for the United States to achieve its strategic and diplomatic goals. It’s also made life worse for the very people in Egypt that Sadek claims to be fighting for.
 
This is not the first time that the actions of extremist Christian activists in America have boiled over in the Middle East. As the New York Times reported in July, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s motorcade “was pelted with shoes and tomatoes by Egyptian protesters” motivated by conspiracy theories that “originated with American conservatives” – two of whom, Jerry Boykin and Frank Gaffney, will be speaking at the upcoming Values Voter Summit.
 

Raymond Raines and the Undying Myth of Christian Persecution

A few weeks ago, we wrote a post about a new report from Liberty Institute and the Family Research Council entitled "The Survey on Religious Hostility in America" which claims to have chronicled "more than 600 cases detailing religious bigotry throughout America."

We noted that one of the cases prominently cited in the report was the story about a ten-year old boy named Raymond Raines who was supposedly yanked out of his chair in the school cafeteria and screamed at by a teacher simply for praying before eating his lunch.

It is one of the Religious Right's favorite tales of victimhood and, as we have noted several times before, it's nearly twenty years old and totally false

The St. Louis case concerned 10-year-old Raymond Raines who, his mother said, was given detention because he sought to pray over his lunch. When lawyers for the Rutherford Institute heard about the case, they filed a lawsuit against the principal and issued a press release denouncing the school system.

"I know it sounds bizarre, but we have substantial evidence to believe it happened," said Timothy Belz, the St. Louis lawyer working with the Rutherford Institute.

On NBC-TV's "Meet the Press," Gingrich described the situation as "a real case about a real child. Should it be possible for the government to punish you if you say grace over your lunch? That's what we used to think of Russian behavior when they were the Soviet Union."

But school officials said the incident never happened. Rather, they said, Raymond was disciplined for fighting in the cafeteria.

"I can tell you he was not reprimanded for praying," said Kenneth Brostron, the school's lawyer. "Do you think it makes sense that the teachers would look around the cafeteria and target the one student who was praying quietly at his seat?"

But that, of course, didn't stop Matt Barber and Shawn Akers from citing it on today's "Faith and Freedom" radio program, where Akers bizarrely linked it to the Declaration of Independence:

For good measure, Barber chimed in to declare that "the hostility against religion, Christianity in particular, has reached such heights that government officials are physically assaulting for praying over a meal in the schools.  That's not hyperbole; that's a specific example."

The claim is, of course, nothing but hyperbole.

Ann Romney Booked for Gay-Bashing Conference?

[Update 9-12-12: Ann Romney Joins Cardinal Dolan In Declining Values Voter Summit Invitation]

Ann Romney, the person tasked with humanizing her husband Mitt, is apparently scheduled to address a conference that dehumanizes others. I’m talking about the Values Voter Summit, which is hosted and sponsored by two Southern Poverty Law Center-designated hate groups – the Family Research Council and American Family Association.

The National Journal Daybook and Values Voter Summit website both list Ann Romney on the schedule:
 
 
 
Notably absent from the list is Cardinal Timothy Dolan, whose spokesperson pointedly declined FRC’s invitation. Yet there Ann Romney is.
 
It’s an odd move by the Romney campaign. They’ve previously deployed her to show the softer side of Mitt. Now they’re sending her to stand on stage with a man who paid $83,000 to use David Duke’s mailing list and addressed a white supremacist group while in public office. The same person – Tony Perkins – also praised a law in Uganda to execute gays and warned senators they would have “the blood of innocent soldiers on their hands” if they repealed Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
 
The Romney campaign must have its reasons, but it sure seems like an odd way to deploy Ann Romney. They already have Paul Ryan scheduled to address the conference. Do they really need two headliners reaching out to the Bachmann-Akin wing of the party? Besides, just last week Ann Romney refused to answer questions about same-sex marriage and contraception, dismissing them as distractions "from what the real voting issue is going to be."
 
For weeks, the Values Voter Summit website listed Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan as invited speakers. When Ryan was added to the ticket in August, the Family Research Council blasted out an email confirming Ryan’s appearance. No one really expected Mitt Romney to show for the event – too radical, too close to the election. That’s why, when the conference schedule was recently posted, it was a shock to see not only “Romney” on the lineup, but Ann Romney.
 
Ryan and Ann Romney, if she appears, will be speaking on stage with Perkins in a lineup that includes Kirk Cameron and Michele Bachmann. They’ll be kicking off a conference that features a who’s who of Todd Akin backers (e.g. Mike Huckabee and Rep. Steve King) and anti-Muslim McCarthyites (e.g. Frank Gaffney and Jerry Boykin). And, of course, there will be gay-bashers – featured speakers like Perkins and Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, who recently defended Malawi’s law criminalizing homosexuality. They would push for the same thing here in America if they thought they could pull it off. In fact, FRC’s Peter Sprigg and the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer have already done so.
 
These aren’t conservative people pushing conservative values and policies – this is the radical right. America, and the Romney campaign in all likelihood, would be better served if Romney and Ryan followed Dolan’s example and skipped the conference. Or they can go cast their lot with the extremists with the national media looking on. We’ll see what their priorities are this Friday morning.

 

Farah Remembers September 11 by Warning that Obama is Ushering in God's Judgment

When not peddling birther myths, WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah has been warning of America’s imminent doom. To remember the September 11, 2001 attacks today, Farah pushed the work of a messianic rabbi who said that 9/11 represented divine judgment, and that the tornadoes that hit in Washington and New York last weekend were also signs of the ultimate “destruction of the nation.”

Is it possible that it has taken us 11 years to understand there was more to 9/11, the single most devastating attack on the American mainland, than met the eye?

I am convinced that it was intended by God as a wake-up call to a nation founded on biblical principles – a warning eerily similar to those ignored by ancient Israel before the judgment and, ultimately, the destruction of the nation.



• In June, Barack Obama, one of the three U.S. leaders who spoke the ancient vow of Isaiah 9:10, in his Inaugural Address in 2009, once again fulfilled the prophecy in June of this year when he scrawled a message on a steel girder on the new World Trade Center building, a message that would seem meaningless to those who have neither read “The Harbinger” nor seen the video documentary “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment.” It said: “We remember,” he wrote. “We rebuild. We come back stronger!”

• In 2007, the U.S. National Park Service banished God from a key display on the Washington Monument. It was an engraving of “LAUS DEO,” which is Latin for “Praise be to God,” on the east side of the aluminum cap of the Washington Monument. So what happened in late 2011? A highly unusual earthquake struck Virginia, knocking out power and cell service from Washington to New York. Only later was it discovered that the foundation of the Washington Monument was so severely cracked it has been closed to the public ever since.

• At the Democratic convention in Charlotte, for the first time in the history of the party, all references to God and Jerusalem as the capital of Israel were stripped from the party platform. But that wasn’t the end of the story. When news of the intentional omissions spread, Obama told party leaders to reinsert the references. When put to a floor vote of delegates at the convention, God was rejected three times by the party before leaders overrode their voice votes and reintroduced platform mentions of God and Jerusalem.

• And just last week, something even more bizarre occurred. Tornadoes, not known to hit Washington and New York – especially at the same time – did just that. And they did so on Saturday, just three days before the anniversary of the 9/11 attack.

None of this will mean much to you unless you are familiar with the revelations of “The Harbinger” and “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” which show the significance of the shakings of America’s foundations that began Sept. 11, 2001, and continued ever since.

AFTAH: Gay Christians are 'Satanically Inspired' and Alan Chambers is like a 'Green-on-Blue' Attacker

Alan Chambers of Exodus International faced a tremendous amount of criticism from anti-gay activists after he spoke to the Gay Christian Network and said that a celibate gay Christian can go to Heaven. Chambers also renounced his group’s slogan on “curing” sexual orientation, saying that in his opinion 99.9% of people who have sought to alter their sexual orientation have not experienced any change. Aghast, many on the Religious Right quickly rebuked the man WORLD Magazine just last year named “Daniel of the Year.”

The attacks continued on Americans For Truth About Homosexuality Radio Hour with AFTAH president Peter LaBarbera and co-host John Kirkwood. LaBarbera said that the idea that someone can be both gay and a Christian and declining anti-gay animus in the church represent “a corruption of evangelicalism,” and Kirkwood even said that gay Christians are “satanically inspired.” Later, LaBarbera compared Chambers to Afghanistan’s “green-on-blue” attackers, or Afghan soldiers who are ostensibly allies who shoot at NATO forces. According to LaBarbera, by renouncing a sexual orientation “cure” Chambers was really leveling an “an attack on Jesus Christ.”

Listen:

LaBarbera: We’re talking about Christianity and homosexuality, the age old struggle between sin and righteousness and the growing confusion within evangelical circles. We saw it in Catholicism, I think the conservative Catholic movement is coming out of their confusion although there are still a lot of nominal Catholics who support gay so-called marriage and the like, but I think evangelicals are becoming—there is a corruption of evangelicalism which is seeking to sort of throw up the white flag as it were, and say ‘we can merge these two, we can do the gay Christian thing.’

Kirkwood: Part of it is ignorance, we talked about being biblically illiterate, they don’t know what the Bible clearly states on this. But part of it is cowardice. Let’s face it, this group, this movement—I believe it is satanically inspired.



LaBarbera: It’s almost like a pincer movement, there’s so many different attacks on the truth, coming from so many different directions, but this thing with Chambers, this is almost like inside the camp, this is almost like Afghanistan where our allies are shooting our own soldiers. When you have a guy whose got the leading Christian—Alan Chambers, Exodus, this was the gold standard, supposedly, this was the ex-gays, this was ‘Christ can change people.’ And now you have the same Alan Chambers, sitting before a group of unrepentant homosexuals and saying I apologize, we don’t use the phrase ‘change is possible’ anymore, to me that’s an attack on Jesus Christ.
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