Glenn Beck Has a 'Bizarre Gift'

Glenn Beck began his program last night with a segment about the rescue of the three women who had been held captive for years in a Cleveland home. Beck was particularly captivated by Charles Ramsey, the man who helped to free them, because Ramsey says he has just "felt" that something was wrong with that house ever since he moved in.

This idea that certain people can just "feel" that something is wrong plays directly into Beck's fundamental belief that the entire world is falling apart all around him even if other people cannot or refuse to see it.  And to demonstrate that Beck is one of the people with this sort of gift, he told a story about briefly meeting a couple and knowing immediately that something was wrong, only to discover later that the man had been physically abusing the woman.

"I have this bizarre gift," Beck said, "that occasionally I can look people in the eye and I can feel them and I don't know anything about them, I don't know what they're going through but I can feel pain sometimes."

And Beck demonstrated just how this gift works by explaining that when he was at the NRA convention this weekend, a man came through the book-signing line when Beck suddenly felt compelled to tell him that everything is going to be okay.  But before he could, the man took the book and walked away, forcing Beck to call the book-signing to a halt so he could chase the man down through the convention hall. 

When he finally caught up to him and delivered the message, "the guy immediately broke down and hugged me and started to cry":

Rick Perry, Fox News and Religious Right Activists Jump on Fabricated Case of Christian Persecution

Todd Starnes of Fox News has dedicated himself to finding cases of Christians facing persecution. Starnes recently reported that the military is deliberately blocking access to a Baptist website and may court-martial Christian soldiers, and alleged that a school in New York is forcing girls to kiss one another. However, these three incidents were all completely false.

On Sunday, Starnes filed another report on how a high school track team in Texas “was disqualified from competing in the state championships because one of the runners made a gesture thanking God after he crossed the finish line.”

“Derrick Hayes, the anchor of the Columbus High School 4×100 relay team had just crossed the finish line when he raised his finger to the sky,” Starnes writes, “thanking the Lord for winning the race that would send them to the state finals.

His article was based on the claims of the athlete’s father, and other outlets picked up the story as well.

Gov. Rick Perry wrote a letter to the University Interscholastic League demanding an investigation:

According to press reports, the student's father, K.C. Hayes, has been widely quoted as saying the student was pointing to the heavens to thank God.

In his letter, Perry said he would “not tolerate the suppression of religious freedom anywhere.”

“It is unconscionable that a student athlete could be punished for an expression of religious faith or that an act of faith could disqualify an athlete in a UIL competition,” Perry said.

He urged the UIL to “investigate this incident thoroughly and take whatever action is necessary to ensure protection of religious freedom and expression at UIL competitions.”

As the Texas Freedom Network has pointed out, Religious Right groups such as the Liberty Institute and Liberty Counsel both jumped on the story, as did Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Attorney General Greg Abbott.

But much like the student who was supposedly given detention for praying in school when he was actually disciplined for fighting, the Texas athlete wasn’t waving his finger to thank God and he wasn’t even disqualified for the gesture he made at the finish line.

The student was actually disqualified for inappropriate behavior towards the referee, and he and his dad now admit that the incident had nothing to do with religious expression.

According to the UIL press release:

Over the course of the investigation, the UIL interviewed several eyewitnesses and reviewed video of the race. Additionally, the UIL spoke to the involved parties. The UIL has concluded the investigation and has found no evidence to suggest that the disqualification took place as a result of the student-athlete expressing religious beliefs. The basis for the disqualification was due to the student-athlete behaving disrespectfully, in the opinion of the local meet referee.

Based on the UIL’s investigation, the student athlete raised his hand and gestured forward at the conclusion of the 4x100-meter relay. The meet official approached the student-athlete in an effort to warn him of a possible disqualification should that behavior continue. In the opinion of the official, the student reacted disrespectfully. Based on his reaction, the student-athlete was subsequently disqualified. Any decision to disqualify a student-athlete at any track meet must be upheld by the head meet referee. The meet official and the meet referee conferred, and the disqualification was upheld on-site. At no point during the discussions surrounding the disqualification at the meet was the issue of religious expression raised by any parties.

The UIL’s investigation also revealed that all coaches involved were notified prior to the regional meet that any gestures in violation of the National Federation of State High School Associations track and field rule against unsporting behavior would be grounds for disqualification. Coaches were instructed to discuss this with their student-athletes prior to all races.

To assist the UIL in its investigation, the student-athlete’s parents submitted a letter stating that their son’s religious freedoms were not violated. “In looking back at the conclusion of the 4x100 race, we realize that Derrick could have handled the win in a different manner,” KC and Stacey Hayes said in the letter. “It was not our intention to force the issue that our son’s religious freedom was violated. Nor do we feel that way now. After discussing this with our son, we have come to the conclusion that his religious rights were not violated.”

The student-athlete who was disqualified also submitted a letter during the investigation stating: “Although I am very thankful for all God has given me and blessed me with, on Saturday, April 27, 2013 at the Regional Track Meet in Kingsville, TX, my actions upon winning the 4x100 relay were strictly the thrill of victory. With this being said, I do not feel my religious rights or freedoms were violated.”

Klingenschmitt: 'ENDA Is the End of the World for Christian Employers'

A few weeks ago, a bipartisan group of legislators once again introduced the Employment Non-Discrimination Act in both the House and the Senate, which will prohibit "employers, employment agencies, and labor unions from using an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity as the basis for employment decisions, such as hiring, firing, promotion, or compensation"; such protections are already provided based on things like race, religion, gender, national origin, age and disability.

But "Chaps" Gordon Klingenschmitt is not buying it because he knows that ENDA is really all about driving Christian businesses right out of existence.

"ENDA is the end of the world for Christian employers," Klingenschmitt claimed, saying that ENDA is not about equality but rather "bankrupting Christian business owners." Even more frightening, ENDA is also apparently about forcing major corporations "to give homosexual bonus pay to your gay or lesbian lover" ... whatever that means.

Saying that ENDA "will be the end of Christian business as we know it," Klingenschmitt asserted that there is a demonic spirit at work behind the push for this legislation before asking why gays and lesbians should be entitled to employment protections when they are not going to Heaven.

"If the Bible will not give eternal benefits to homosexuals, if they cannot inherit the kingdom of God, why," Klingenschmitt asked, "on this world, should they get bonus pay or employment benefits?"

Right Wing Round-Up - 5/7/13

Right Wing Leftovers - 5/7/13

  • The Government Is Not God PAC has "very publicly refused to endorse" Mark Sanford or, as they describe him, "the confessed adulterer who as Commander-in-Chief of South Carolina deserted his post for several days for a 'hook-up' he had arranged online."
  • Is Mike Huckabee already thinking of ending his daily radio show?
  • Rick Scarborough, the anti-gay activist who believes that AIDS is God's punishment for homosexuality, will be on Glenn Beck's television program on Thursday.
  • Another Religious Right tale of Christian victimization bites the dust.
  • Finally, CWA's Penny Nance doubled down on her claim that the Enlightenment led to the Holocaust: "Atrocities including Hitler’s anti-Semitism, Stalin’s Marxism, or Mao’s communism — all of which inflicted pain upon millions — resulted from the destruction of a clear moral order, a reliance on capricious human wisdom, and an addiction to power. Had their morality been attached to a faith rooted in a higher, universal standard, they could not have believed what that did." Sadly, her case was so convincing that CWA seems to have removed the post.

The Myth of American Christians as Persecuted Minority, part 256

The claim that American Christians are facing horrible persecution for their religious beliefs – and are on the verge of being rounded up and thrown into jail by tyrannical secularists – has been a staple of Religious Right groups’ rhetoric for decades. And as conservative evangelicals’ anti-gay views have lost popular support, they’ve doubled down on their claims that gay rights are incompatible with religious liberty. In recent years, conservative Catholics have joined in crying “religious persecution” in response to the advance of marriage equality for same-sex couples and the Obama administration’s requirement for insurance coverage of contraception.

On CNN’s Belief Blog, correspondent John Blake has given voice to these claims in a post titled “When Christians become a ‘hated minority.’” That headline hinted that this piece would be problematic. And that was confirmed with the opening sentence, which cites the Family Research Council’s Peter Sprigg, who goes on to say that anti-gay Christians are victims who are being forced into the “closet.”

Where to begin?

We could start with the problem of Peter Sprigg being a spokesperson for tolerance. In Blake’s story, Sprigg is quoted saying “Maybe we need to do a better job of showing that we are motivated by Christian love” and “Love is wanting the best for someone, and acting to bring that about.” It’s hard to square Sprigg’s assertion that he is motivated by the best interests of gay people, given that he:

  • has called for the criminalization of homosexual conduct both in the U.S. and abroad;
  • said he would like to “export” gays from the U.S. rather than support legislation to give same-sex couples equal treatment under immigration law;
  • dislikes the idea of a gay judge, because he says gays don’t make good role models;
  • opposes making children raised by a same-sex couple eligible for social security benefits if a parent’s spouse dies;
  • dismisses anti-bullying and safe-school programs as attempts to indoctrinate impressionable children
  • has suggested that schools should be allowed to fire openly gay teachers and coaches;
  • has cheered the kidnapping of a child by a mother who refused to abide by a court’s order to share custody with her former partner.

Sprigg says the “real goal of homosexual activists” is not protection from discrimination or marriage equality, but is “to create a society in which it is unacceptable for anyone, ever, anywhere to say that homosexual conduct is wrong, or that homosexual relationships are anything other than fully equal to heterosexual ones.” The CNN piece also cites Bryan Liften, a professor at Moody Bible Institute, saying Christians should be able to publicly say that God designed sex to take place within a marriage between a man and a woman.

Should be? If you haven’t noticed, plenty of Christians have been saying that loudly and proudly and with millions of dollars they have used to enshrine that belief into a majority of state constitutions. People like Sprigg and his boss Tony Perkins, Brian Brown from the National Organization for Marriage, and any number of conservative evangelicals and Roman Catholic bishops have pretty much an open invitation to say so on national television and before state legislative and congressional committees. Not to mention through their own radio and television networks and vast church networks. Or from the platform of the Republican convention.  Freedom of expression, including anti-equality expression, is alive and well.

The CNN post does include Christians with differing views on gay rights, and who acknowledge that simply claiming religious backing for one’s beliefs does not insulate those views from criticism in the public arena. Neither does disagreement equate to discrimination or persecution. Conservative Christians did not see it as a form of religious discrimination to enshrine their view of marriage into laws and state constitutions; but as public opinion shifts and more states make equality the law, they warn of dire threats to their freedom.

Among the Religious Right horror stories linked to in the CNN piece are complaints about pastor Louie Giglio’s withdrawal from President Obama’s second inaugural ceremony in the face of criticism about anti-gay remarks that surfaced online. Criticism of those remarks – even anger and disappointment among pro-equality Obama supporters over Giglio being given a place of honor at the inaugural – does not mean, as some pundits claimed, that people of faith are no longer welcome in the public square. Anyone who heard the prayers, music, and speeches at the inaugural would see that such claims are ludicrous.

It should be noted that Religious Right groups made similarly shrill claims that the addition of sexual orientation to federal hate crimes laws would result in preachers being thrown into jail for quoting scripture on homosexuality. And they claimed that allowing gay members of the armed forces to serve openly would destroy the military. Those claims have been proven to be not just wrong but ridiculous.

Baker quotes evangelical blogger Joe Carter (who used to work at Family Research Council), warning that young people will abandon anti-gay churches “for fear of being called haters.” What is far more likely is that many young Christians will leave anti-gay churches because they have gay friends and disagree with both the anti-gay theology and anti-equality policy positions of the Religious Right. And some may continue to hold traditional theological views on homosexuality while supporting legal equality as a civil matter. Polling shows that the generation gap on LGBT issues is huge within as well as outside the evangelical community – and that many young Christians are disillusioned with the anti-gay fixation of many church leaders.

The CNN piece finishes blogger Carter saying “he foresees a day when any church that preaches against homosexuality will be marginalized. Just as many churches now accept divorce, they will accept sexual practices once considered sinful.”

So let’s end with a consideration of divorce. The Catholic Church denies its religious blessing to divorced couples who get remarried without obtaining a religious annulment of their previous marriage. Many evangelical churches also frown on divorce. But all marriages – first, second, third, or fourth – are treated equally under civil law (good news for Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh!).  Yet no one is arguing that the status quo on divorce amounts to an attack on religious freedom – or that Christians who oppose divorce have been marginalized or hounded out of the public square. Their religious beliefs about divorce coexist with public policy that reflects societal reality and the opinions of a religiously diverse America. 

Perkins and Knight Dismiss Jason Collins, Cheer on Anti-Gay Commentator as True Hero

The lesson of the Jason Collins story, according to Religious Right activists, is that true courage is found in attacking gay people… since not enough people are doing it these days.

In his daily radio bulletin, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council contended that Chris Broussard, the sportscaster who claimed that Jason Collins was rebelling against God, showed “real courage,” unlike Collins…because no one criticized him for being gay, except for Broussard (and many, many, many others).

Jason Collins doesn't play for the Trailblazers, but he's being treated like one. Hello, I'm Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council in Washington, D.C. When the NBA's Jayson Collins announced he was gay, people were literally jumping through hoops to praise him. But if you want to know what real courage looks like, try standing up for truth. NBA reporter Chris Broussard did--and he found out that coming out as Christian might be harder than admitting you're gay. "There [are] a lot Christians in the NBA and just because they disagree with that lifestyle, they don't want to be called bigoted and intolerant ...[T]rue tolerance and acceptance is being able to [act like] mature adults and not call each other names." Personally, Chris said, he didn't know how Collins could reconcile homosexuality with his faith. "If you're openly living in unrepentant sin... not just homosexuality, [but] adultery... premarital sex... whatever... that's walking in open rebellion to God..." ESPN apologized for his comments, but they should have been sorrier for fouling up the debate.

The American Civil Right Union’s Robert Knight made the same case in the Washington Times, arguing that the really brave people are those who attacked Jason Collins since not enough people attacked him.

“A lynch mob is chasing ESPN the Magazine writer Chris Broussard,” Knight writes, “Like openly devout quarterback Tim Tebow, Mr. Griffin and Mr. Broussard are the brave ones — rocks in a flood tide of insanity and cowardice.”

When pro basketball player Jason Collins “came out,” the media went nuts. He was toasted from coast to coast, received congratulatory phone calls from President Obama and Bill Clinton, and made magazine covers.

On May 1, Washington Post sportswriter Mike Wise joined the parade by bashing “Old Testament moral certainty” and denouncing anyone who “trumpeted their bigotry under the guise of ‘religious beliefs.’” There’s no hint in Mr. Wise’s vitriolic column that someone could possibly hold sincere, faith-based moral beliefs. Bullies like the oxymoronically named Mr. Wise are types that the Age of Tolerance is spawning by the truckload.

This brings us to our final word, which is “brave.” Mr. Collins was widely hailed as brave, but it’s the few people who dared question the wisdom of his volitional behavior who are brave.

A lynch mob is chasing ESPN the Magazine writer Chris Broussard because he reiterated classic Christian doctrine to an interviewer: “If you’re openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be — not just homosexuality, [but] adultery, fornication, premarital sex, whatever it may be — I believe that’s walking in open rebellion to God and to Jesus Christ. So I would not characterize that person as a Christian, because I don’t think the Bible would characterize him as a Christian.”

Another brave soul is Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, who on April 30 tweeted: “In a land of freedom, we are held hostage by the tyranny of political correctness.” Like openly devout quarterback Tim Tebow, Mr. Griffin and Mr. Broussard are the brave ones — rocks in a flood tide of insanity and cowardice.

As we watch word after word twisted into doublespeak by corrupt elites, it brings to mind George Orwell’s observation: “Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”

LaBarbera: Gays Can Change Like Murderers, Rapists and 'The Most Vile Criminals'

Channeling Pat Robertson, Americans For Truth About Homosexuality’s Peter LaBarbera said that it is an “insult to God” to argue that gays and lesbians have an innate sexual orientation when God can change “murderers” along with “the most vile criminals, rapists, alcoholics [and] drunks.”

LaBarbera appeared Friday on The Janet Mefferd Show to criticize John Paulk, the onetime poster boy of the ex-gay movement who recently left the movement. He was appalled by Paulk’s claim that “you can be homosexual and still faithful to God” and argued that “it’s weird” to think Paulk believes “he’s become a better person after renouncing this ex-gay life.”

He says, “My relationship with the Lord is more real and authentic than ever before. My beliefs about the Bible are the same. I have not gone off the deep end having become a freakishly liberal gay Christian.” But he’s not a conservative. He gave up the part about not, you know, he says he didn’t want to continue the ex-gay life but he says he’s more real and vulnerable, he says: “Because of God’s recent work in my life I have become more loving, tender, vulnerable, and hopeful.” It sounds like he’s become a better person after renouncing this ex-gay life, it’s weird. This is John Paulk saying that he is “more loving, tender, vulnerable, and hopeful” since he’s basically renounced this part of his life where he’s overcome homosexuality. He’s trying to say that you can be homosexual and still faithful to God.



How dare anybody say Jesus Christ can’t heal homosexuals and help them overcome. Jesus forgives murderers; he restores the most vile criminals, rapists, alcoholics, drunks; yet we are going to say that Jesus can’t change homosexuals, people trapped in homosexuality? That is an insult to God himself.

Camarota: Legal Immigration 'Dooms' Conservatives 'If It's Allowed to Continue'

Center for Immigration Studies research director Steven Camarota paid a visit to the raving conspiracy theorists at the Talk to Solomon Show late last month to discuss the Gang of Eight’s bipartisan immigration reform proposal.

Host Stan Solomon started off the discussion with a rant about immigration reform amounting to “total surrender” for conservatives because undocumented immigrants will somehow start  committing large-scale voter fraud in favor of Democratic candidates. Camarota replied that while allowing a path to citizenship would be “boon for the Democratic Party in general,” it is in fact legal immigration that “dooms” conservatives. “Legal immigration means conservatives are going to have a tough time in the coming decades, if it’s allowed to continue,” he said. “Obviously we could change it.”

Later in the discussion, Camarota called the provision of the Fourteenth Amendment that grants birthright citizenship to children born in the United States “unwise,” saying that it amounts to “squatter’s rights” for undocumented immigrants.

Camarota then presented his novel twist on the concept of “self-deportion,” the extreme strategy developed by Camarota’s boss Mark Krikorian and disastrously embraced by Mitt Romney. After several years of making life so miserable for undocumented immigrants that they leave the country, Camarota suggests, “then we can come back and decide if there’s some share of the population that are left that we might want to amnesty.”

Solomon: Anyone that believes that this is anything less than total surrender, total amnesty and a total victory for liberalism and the Democrat Party, because all these people will become Democrats before they become citizens, and by the way they’ll vote too because we won’t allow them, anyone, to be identified because it would be somehow wrong to ask them if they’re legal or citizens yet before they vote. So, everyone knows this is a game-changer for America. Am I right or wrong?

Camarota: Right, I mean, it’s a long-term boon for the Democratic Party in general. The amnesty is…there’s something else, I mean, you know, I guess people may not realize, it’s legal immigration that mainly kind of dooms…Well, I don’t know that it doom’s Republicans, that’s just simply not fair. It dooms, sort of, conservatives. Because all of the survey research on the new immigrants, well, at least the ones we can do on Hispanics and Asians, are overwhelmingly in favor of government regulation, more spending, that sort of thing. And we have anecdotal evidence that the small number of European immigrants who come in now also are quite liberal in their political orientation, so the political system will respond to that. I mean, sure, it would be wrong to say it’s just simply a voter registration drive. But legal immigration means conservatives are going to have a tough time in the coming decades, if it’s allowed to continue. Obviously we could change it.

The bottom line, though, is when you haven’t enforced the law very much for twenty years, it’s like, maybe the analogy is squatter’s rights. Or at least this is Marco Rubio and his analysis is that they have a kind of squatter’s rights. And there are perhaps four to five million U.S.-born children now of illegal immigrants. Now, whether we should have given citizenship to people’s children, to a child born in the United States to an illegal parent – virtually no other country in the world would do that, but we do – you know, it’s a fair question to say that was unwise, but we did it. So now, we’re in a very tough situation.

But I do think that we don’t have to deport everyone. The best research indicates that about 200,000 illegal immigrants go home on their own each year. So, it’s just that more than that come and that’s what caused the population to grow. But we think the number coming is down and the number going home is up. So if we enforce our laws, illegals couldn’t jobs or access public benefits, if they couldn’t get drivers’ licenses or access in-state college tuition and all the other things we do, I think we could dramatically increase the number of people going home.

And then, after we show for a number of years that we were serious about enforcing laws, then we can come back and decide if there’s some share of the population that are left that we might want to amnesty.

 

The Muslim Plot to Take Over National Parks Exposed!

Avi Lipkin is back and once again stirring fears that President Obama — with the help of the Illuminati and the Free Masons, of course — is planning to engineer a crisis in the Middle East that will push 50-100 million Muslim refugees to the US who will then live on property seized under Agenda 21.

As he explained on an interview on VCY America’s Crosstalk yesterday, Obama will use Agenda 21 to confiscate lands such as parks and farms in Texas and the Ozarks in order to create “a Muslim majority in America.”

Later, Lipkin explained that Muslims tend to settle in forests and are already setting up encampments until there are about 50 million Muslim forest dwellers.

They go to the country where the President is a Muslim of a Christian country; that’s Obama, that’s the US. You’ve heard of Agenda 21 right? Agenda 21 means the US government can confiscate national parks, national forests, resources, big farms. The King Ranch in Texas is the size of Rhode Island; you could confiscate that ranch and put in 5 million Muslims there. I drive all the time through Texas and Oklahoma, the whole place is full of beautiful forests and mountains and lakes and there are very few people living there. America is empty, Canada is empty, Brazil is empty, Mexico has room, Europe has room. You’re going to have tens of millions of Muslims abandoning the Middle East — which is being turned into complete desolation by these civil wars — and the ultimate goal is to have a Muslim majority in America. Obama said in one of his speeches that America is the greatest Muslim country on earth, he’s a prophet because that’s what his purpose is.



They bring in say about 50,000 people in one shot in that forest. I heard about this in Virginia, I heard about this in New York, on the border between North and South Carolina, I heard about this in Texas. I go a lot through the Ozarks, I go through Missouri and Arkansas, there is a lot of beautiful pristine country which is completely empty. If you want to bring to the United States 50 million immigrants, you cannot bring them into the cities, you cannot overburden the infrastructure of the cities, cities cannot cope with that, so you build completely new infrastructures in forests, in places where you can plan this, this is being planned.

When a caller on the show wondered if Obama is going to “declare martial law” and follow through with plans “on becoming the dictator of our country,” Lipkin said that while that is a possibility he may not need the help of the FBI and the CIA to pull off the coup since there will be “50 million more minority people in the US” who, with the help of Saudi money and other minority groups, will work to keep Obama in power indefinitely.

Caller: We know that somebody in the Obama group is trying to do away with term limits so he can run again, then we also have the gun control and the government purchasing ammunition and I know before this last election there was some hype about him attacking Iran so he can declare martial law. What I’m wondering is do you think that by 2016 Mr. Obama is planning on becoming the dictator of our country?

Lipkin: That’s a very tough question to answer. If I’m going according to the information that I have, I understand the information that you have and the people that I speak to in America are the same type of people like you who have that kind of information about the dictatorship and the FBI and the CIA turning against Christians, this is possible. I think that what we are seeing is a plan by the Saudis, by the Qataris, by the Islamic world to bring into the US tens of millions of Muslims with a lot of money. Wall Street just hit 15,000 and I think Wall Street will continue to rise because it is being propped up by Saudi money. There are a lot of people in America, you’ve got a lot of minorities who are very happy with Obama and if you get 50 million more minority people in the US, the Christians are being increasingly outnumbered and the people who represent the other ideologies, especially Islam, will be dominant and there might not be need for FBI or CIA because the country is lost. So it’s very important for the churches to wake up, have a Christian revival and put a stop to it now.
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