History Facts: Thomas Jefferson Facts vs. Liberal Lies about Black Civil Rights Advocates

History Facts, Book Review:

Thomas Jefferson Facts vs. Liberal Lies

Part 1

The Jefferson Lies

David Barton

Why does the Left continue to misquote Jefferson, accuse him of being anti-God, and attribute evil deeds to him? Because they know that if they are able to discredit and dismiss Jefferson and our other Founders, then we are that much closer to surrendering our birthright and our natural freedoms. These myths have flourished in our e3ducational institutions in recent years and have become accepted as truth. It’s a poison in our nation’s system that can only be flushed out by light and truth. ~Glenn Beck, Foreword

 

LIE:

Thomas Jefferson Was a Racist who opposed Equality for Black Americans 

In previous generations, leading civil rights advocates, both black and white, regularly invoked Jefferson as an inspiration for their own efforts, point to his lengthy record of legislative proposals and writings on the subject of emancipation and civil rights. ~David Barton, p. 119

History Facts:

1820— Missouri Compromise

Retained a ban on slavery in the Kansas-Nebraska territory (which included parts of Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, North Dakota, and South Dakota).

1854—Kansas-Nebraska Act

Reversed those 1820 restrictions, allowing slavery into even more federal territory.

Lincoln invoked Jefferson to condemn that act:

Mr. Jefferson . . . conceived the idea of taking that occasion to prevent slavery ever going into the northwestern territory. . .Thus, with the author of the Declaration of Independence, the policy of prohibiting slavery in new territory originated. Now Congress declares this [antislavery law constructed by Jefferson] ought never to have been.

Black civil rights advocates such as Fredrick Douglass also regularly invoked Jefferson to assist their efforts. Concerning Jefferson, Douglass declared:

“God has no attribute that could take sides with the oppressor in such a contest. I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just and that His justice cannot sleep forever.” Such is the warning voice of Thomas Jefferson, and every day’s experience since its utterance until now confirms its wisdom and commends its truth.

At a speech in Virginia following the Civil War, Douglass declared:

Frederick Douglass (1818-1895), former slave and abolitionist broke whites’ stereotypes about African Americans in the decades prior to the U.S. Civil War. His literary and oratorical excellence, and his dignified bearing, converted many to support the abolition of slavery in the United States. 1855 portrait. (Newscom TagID: evhistorypix007462.jpg) [Photo via Newscom]

“I have been charged with lifelong hostility to one of the cherished institutions of Virginia [i.e., slavery]. I am not ashamed of that lifelong opposition. . . . It was, Virginia, your own Thomas Jefferson that taught me that all men are created equal. . . .”Jefferson was not ashamed to call the black man his brother and to address him as a gentleman.”

Other Black Civil Rights Advocates Quote Thomas Jefferson

On numerous other occasions Douglass similarly used Jefferson as an authority in his crusade to end slavery and achieve full equality and black civil rights. Additional black civil rights advocates who likewise invoked Jefferson in a positive manner included Henry Highland Garner, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Colin Powell, and others. ~Barton, 147-148

Was Jefferson impeccable on race and civil rights? Certainly not. He recognized and admitted that he had some prejudices, but he also openly acknowledged that he wanted to be proven wrong concerning those views. Yet despite his self-acknowledged weaknesses, Jefferson faithfully and consistently advocated for emancipation and civil rights throughout his long life, even when it would have been easier and better for him if he had remained silent or inactive.

Had Jefferson been free from the laws of his own state—that is, had he lived in a state such as Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Connecticut—he likely would be hailed today as a bold civil rights leader, for his efforts and writings would certainly compare favorably with those of great civil rights advocates in the Northern states.

In fact, if Jefferson had proposed his various pieces of legislation in those states, they would certainly have passed, and he would have been deemed a national civil rights hero. But his geography and circumstances doomed him to a different fate. Modern writers now refuse to recognize what previous generations openly acknowledged: Jefferson was a bold, staunch, and consistent advocate and defender of emancipation.  ~Barton, 149

 

Truth in Journalism: Liberal Lies, Intimidation Game, War on Free Speech

Truth in Journalism:

Liberal Lies, Intimidation Game, War on Free Speech

The Left’s War on Free Speech, Part 2

Kimberley Strassel
Author, The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech

In the weeks following the Citizens United ruling, the Left settled on a new strategy. If it could no longer use speech laws against its opponents, it would do the next best thing—it would threaten, harass, and intimidate its opponents out of participation.

Intimidation Game: Strategies for Abuse of Power

We’ve seen this strategy unfold, in a coordinated fashion and using a variety of tactics, since 2010.

***

1)  Intimidation by Bureaucracies

One tactic is the unleashing of federal and state bureaucracies on political opponents. The best example of this is the IRS targeting of conservative non-profits. To this day, Obama acolytes and Senate Democrats characterize that targeting as a mistake by a few minor IRS employees in Cincinnati who didn’t understand the law. That is a lie.

Congress held several investigations of this targeting, and the truth is clear. In the months following the Citizens United ruling, President Obama delivered speech after speech on behalf of Democratic midterm candidates, repeating the same grave warning at each stop—thanks to Citizens United, he would say, shadowy and scary organizations are flooding into our elections. He suggested these organizations might be operating illegally and might be funded by foreign players. He noted that somebody should do something about it.

These speeches acted as a dog whistle to an IRS bureaucracy that was already primed to act. Former IRS official Lois Lerner was well aware of Democratic demands that the agency go after conservative Tea Party and non-profit groups.

Senate Democrats and left-wing interest groups had been sending letters to the agency for months, demanding it go after the very groups it ultimately went after. And Ms. Lerner had her own biases—we know this from her recoverable emails—that put her politically and substantively in the anti-free speech camp. The result is that the IRS deliberately put some 400 conservative organizations, representing tens of thousands of Americans, on political ice for the 2010 and 2012 elections.

It is hard not to believe that this was designed to help Democrats in those elections. We know that senior members of the Treasury Department were aware of the targeting abuse in early 2012, and took steps to try to slow it. Yet those officials did not inform Congress this was happening, and chose not to divulge the abuse until well after that year’s election.

2) Intimidation by Prosecutors

Another intimidation tactic is for prosecutors to abuse their awesome powers in order to hound and frighten political opponents.

The most terrifying example of this was the John Doe probe in Wisconsin. Democratic prosecutors in Milwaukee launched a bogus criminal campaign finance investigation into some 30 conservative groups that supported the public-sector union reforms championed by Governor Scott Walker. Wisconsin’s John Doe law gave these prosecutors the right to conduct this investigation in secret and to subject their individual targets to gag orders. Prosecutors secretly looked through these individuals’ financial records, bank accounts, and emails.

Intimidation of Innocent Young Boy

Prosecutors also conducted pre-dawn raids on some of their targets’ homes. In one horrifying instance, the target of such a raid was on an out-of-town trip with his wife, and their teenage son was home alone. Law enforcement came into the house and sequestered the boy, refusing to allow him to call a lawyer or even his grandparents, who lived down the road. They hauled items out of the house, and as they left they told the boy that he too was subject to the gag order—that if he told anyone what had happened to him, he could go to jail.

We only learned of this because one brave target of the probe, Eric O’Keefe, told The Wall Street Journal what was going on. We broke that story, and it became national headline news. But it ultimately took a lawsuit and the Wisconsin Supreme Court to shut down the probe. In its ruling, the Court made clear its view that the probe’s purpose had been intimidation. The prosecutors had been sending the message: if you dare to speak, we will turn your lives into a living hell and potentially put you in prison.

Support Climate Change Hoax Or Else!

More recently we have seen this tactic in the joint action of 17 state attorneys general, who launched a probe into Exxon and some 100 different groups that have worked with Exxon over the years. The implicit prosecutorial threat: get on board with our climate change agenda or we might bring racketeering charges against you.

3) Intimidation, Blackmail by Activists

A third intimidation tactic is for activist groups to use blackmail against corporations and non-profits in order to silence them.

One subject of such attacks was the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a group that works to promote free-market policies at the state level. As a non-profit, it is largely funded by corporate donations. Because it is so successful, it has long been despised by left-wing activist groups.

These groups focused their efforts on ALEC in 2012, in the wake of the tragic shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida. ALEC had played a tangential role in crafting the popular stand-your-ground laws that the Left attacked after the shooting. On that basis, left-wing activists branded ALEC a racist organization and threatened to run ad campaigns against its corporate donors, branding them as racists too—unless they stopped funding ALEC. In a coordinated action, Democratic U.S. Senator Dick Durbin sent letters to a thousand organizations across the country, demanding to know if they supported ALEC and suggesting they’d get hauled in front of Congress if they did. ALEC lost nearly half of its donors in the space of a few months.

We’ve also seen this tactic employed against private individuals. One such person was Idaho businessman Frank VanderSloot, who Barack Obama’s reelection campaign singled out in 2012, following a VanderSloot donation to Mitt Romney. The campaign publicly branded him a disreputable person, painting a target on his back. Not long after that, VanderSloot was audited by the IRS and visited by other federal agencies.

California Proposition 8

Out in California, left-wing activists targeted donors to the state’s Prop 8 ballot initiative, which supported traditional marriage. They combed through campaign finance records, and put the names and addresses of Prop 8’s donors on a searchable map. Citizens on this list had their cars keyed, their windows broken, their small businesses flash-mobbed, and their voicemails and emails flooded with threats and insults. Some of them even lost their jobs—most notably Brendan Eich, the founder and CEO of Mozilla. In later depositions, many of these targets told lawyers that they wouldn’t donate to future ballot initiatives.

 So the attacks were successful in silencing them.

Note the use of disclosure in these attacks. We have come to associate transparency and disclosure with good government.

But unfortunately, our system of disclosure has been turned on its head. Disclosure was supposed to enable citizens to keep track of politicians; but if you followed Hillary Clinton’s server scandal, you know that politicians have now become expert at hiding their business. Instead, disclosure is increasingly becoming a tool by which government and political thugs identify people and organizations who oppose them.

Sadly, our federal judiciary has refused to honor important precedents that protect anonymity in politics—most notably the famous 1958 case, NAACP v. Alabama. In that case, a unanimous Supreme Court ruled against the Alabama attorney general, who had demanded a list of the state’s NAACP members. The civil rights group knew this was tantamount to making targets of its members in a state that was riven at the time with race-related violence. The Court held that some level of anonymity is sometimes required to protect the rights of free speech and free assembly. The Court expanded on this precedent until the Watergate scandal, when it too got caught up in the disclosure fad. Political privacy rights have been eroding ever since.

What Is to Be Done? Awareness Is Key

What is to be done? For starters, we need to be aware that this is happening, and that it is not random. The intimidation game is very real.

It is the work of left-wing groups and politicians, it is coordinated, and it is well-honed. Many of the targets of intimidation who I interviewed for my recent book weren’t aware of what was happening to them, and that allowed the intimidation to go on for too long.

Awareness is key.

Strip Powers from Unaccountable Agencies

We need to think hard about ways to limit the powers of the administrative state, to stop rogue agents at the IRS and other agencies from trampling on free speech rights. We can make great progress simply by cutting the size of federal and state bureaucracies. But beyond that, we need to conduct systematic reviews of agency powers and strip from unaccountable bureaucracies any discretion over the political activities of Americans. The IRS should be doing what it was created to do—making sure taxpayers fill out their forms correctly. Period.

We need to push corporations to grow backbones and to defend more aggressively their free speech interests—rather than leaving that defense to others.

Put the Onus of Disclosure on Government Rather Than Citizens

We need to overhaul our disclosure laws, and once again put the onus of disclosure on government rather than citizens. At the moment, every American who donates $200 or more to a federal politician goes into a database. Without meaning to sound cynical, no politician in Washington is capable of being bought off for a mere $200.

We need to raise that donation threshold. And we need to think hard about whether there is good reason to force disclosure of any donations to ballot initiatives or to the production and broadcast of issue ads—ads designed to educate the public rather than to promote or oppose candidates.

Expose Bullies

Most important, we need to call out intimidation in any form and manner we see it—and do so instantly. Bullies don’t like to be exposed. They’d rather practice their ugliness in the dark. And one lesson that emerged from all my interviews on this topic is that speaking out works. Those who rolled over merely set themselves up for future attacks. Those who called out the intimidators maintained their rights and won the day.

More Voices, More Vigorous Debate

Finally, conservatives need to tamp down any impulse to practice such intimidation themselves. Our country is best when it is engaging in vigorous debate. The Framers of the Constitution envisioned a multiplicity of interests that would argue their way to a common good. We succeed with more voices, not fewer, and we should have enough confidence in our arguments to hear out our opponents.

 

War on Free Speech, Part 1

 

Patriotism Book Review: Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner

Patriotism Book Review:

Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner

Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner

By Rush Limbaugh and Kathryn Adams Limbaugh

Winner of the 2014 Children’s Choice Book Award for Author of the Year

 

It’s the dawn of an important new day in America. Young readers, grab the reins and join Rush Revere, Liberty the horse, and the whole time-traveling crew in this patriotic historical adventure that takes you on an exciting trip to the  past to see our remarkable nation’s most iconic symbols up close and personal!

1787—that’s where we’re rush, rush, rushing off to next with our enthusiastic young friends in the Time-Traveling Crew (but not before causing a major security incident at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.!)

A funny case of mistaken identity and a wild chase through the busy streets of Philadelphia will ledad us to the famously introverted Father of our constitution, James Madison and the heated secret debates over the Constitution and the Bill  of Rights. Fast-forward a few years, and we’ll help his brave wife, Dolly, risk her life to save an important portrait from the White House as the British set Washington afire!

What greater symbol of our exceptional nation’s hard-won freedoms than the Star-Spangled Banner, sewn by American icon Betsy Ross?

Perhaps Francis Scott Key can explain what inspired him to pay tribute to our glorious flag by writing our beautiful national anthem. But watch out for the bombs bursting in air, because when we reach 1814, we’ll be front and center at a major battle to defend our liberty.

Jump back in the saddle with me, Rush Revere, and the Time-Traveling Crew, as my trusty horse, Liberty, takes us on another flying leap through American history into a past teeming with heroes and extraordinary citizens who have so much to teach us about patriotism.

All you need to bring is your curiosity about the birth of our democracy—I’ve got plenty of tricornered hats for everyone!

 

Go back in time to experience fht fight for American freedom firsthand, on the floors of Congress and the battlements of Fort McHenry, and ask:

What do the words of the national anthem really mean?

Who created the first flag of the United States?

What did Dolley Madison rescue when the British burned the Capitol?

Where is the U.S. Constitution kept?

Why was George Mason upset at the Constitutional Convention?

Why was the War of 1812 fought?

How did James Madison become the Father of the Constitution?

 

Judeo-Christian Culture: War Stories—Soldier owes his survival to Faith in God

Judeo-Christian Culture:

War Stories—Soldier owes his survival to Faith in God

Retired Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch on How Faith Sustained Him Through Years of War

Dan Riehl

Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch (U.S. Army Ret.) joined Breitbart News Daily SiriusXM host Alex Marlow on Thursday to discuss his new book, Work Hard, Pray Hard: The Power of Faith in Action.

The Amazon preview of his book states in part:

In trying times, where can we turn to find true strength and peace of mind? If you think God might be the answer, you’re off to a pretty good start. But know this—believing is only step one. From his harrowing personal journey on the battlefields of Iraq to dealing with the everyday stresses of life at home, retired Army General Rick Lynch shares his thirty-plus years of experience that proved to him the power of faith in action.

Bolstered by history and backed by the Bible, Work Hard, Pray Hard explores seven steps that will put the true power of faith into action, in your life, every day.

Lynch said Thursday, “I was in the Army thirty-five years, ten years as a general officer. I fought in Iraq on three different occasions: Desert Shield, Desert Storm, and Kosovo. I personally don’t know how I could’ve done that without my personal relationship with God. Every day I turned to God in prayer and asked Him for strength and courage and wisdom to do the things that He wanted me to do.”

Lynch went on to cite a few examples of when his faith sustained him during his time in the Army, including on the battlefield.

History Facts: Book Review—Thomas Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates

History Facts:

Book Review—Thomas Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates

Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates

The forgotten Barbary War that changed American history

Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger

To my dad, who died way too young, and my mom, who worked way too hard. They taught me from day one that being born in America was like winning the lottery. This story is yet more proof that they were 100 percent right. ~Brian Kilmeade

 

When Thomas Jefferson became president in 1801, America was deeply in debt, with its economy and dignity under attack. Pirates from North Africa’s Barbary Coast routinely captured American merchant ships and held the sailors as slaves, demanding ransom and tribute payments far beyond what the new country could afford.

Time to Stand Up to the Intimidation

For fifteen years, America had tried to work with the four Muslim powers (Tripoli, Tunis, Algiers, and Morocco) driving the piracy, but negotiation proved impossible. Realizing it was time to stand up to the intimidation, Jefferson decided to move beyond diplomacy. He sent the U.S. Navy and Marines to blockade Tripoli—launching the Barbary Wars and beginning America’s journey toward future superpower status.

Few today remember these men and other heroes who inspired the Marine Corps hymn: “From the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli, we fight our country’s battles in the air, on land and sea.” Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates recaptures this forgotten war that changed American history with a real-life drama of intrigue, bravery, and battle on the high seas.

Part of the reason Jefferson was motivated to shock the world by sending warships to the North African coast was that he understood in human terms the cost of piracy.

[I]n Jefferson’s time and after, Jefferson’s tough-minded approach  to securing the safety of Americans abroad prevailed—and changed the course of history. The British, Dutch, and French, who all possessed of vastly larger navies and had greater resources than the young United States, had flinched when faced with the Islamic threat, but they now followed the lead of the new nation.

The growing confidence in the nation’s military strength fueled national policy. The United States had successfully rejected the Old World’s model of complying with the pirates off the coast of Europe and Africa, and it was now bold enough to reject European interference with life on its own side of the Atlantic. 210

Monroe Doctrine

Military strength made possible an unprecedented assertion by President Monroe in his annual message of 1823. The Monroe Doctrine, as the principle he introduced came to be called, warned the European powers not to trespass on North or South American shores. Monroe vowed that any attempt to interfere with the destiny of nations in the American hemisphere would be regarded “as the manifestation of an unfriendly disposition toward the United States.” 214-215

Many men and women suffered in captivity before America’s intervention rid the world of North African piracy, but their suffering was not in vain. After centuries of piracy along the Barbary Coast, only the exercise of military strength had succeeded in ending the state-sanctioned practice of terror on the high seas. The lesson was not lost on America. The young nation gained from this chapter the courage to exercise its strength in the world, and it would remember that lesson in the future when other innocent lives were at stake. ~Brian Kilmeade, 215

Today, the war’s military legacy cannot be ignored. It saw the emergence of the U.S. Navy as a force to be reckoned with in foreign seas. It saw the American flag planted for the first time in victory on terrain outside the Western Hemisphere. So great was the war’s significance for the Marines that their hymn refers to “the shores of Tripoli,” and the Corps adopted the Mameluke sword as part of its officers’ uniforms in 1825.

Most important, here in the twenty-first century, the broader story—the great confrontation between the United States and militant Islamic states—has a new significance. 203

 

Western Culture Newsletter: Easter is about Jesus Christ

April 2017 Western Culture Newsletter: Easter is about Jesus Christ

Culture Wars

Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God. He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father. He is the light, the life, and the hope of the world.

Dear Friends,

Welcome to Western Culture Dinner Topics!

THE JUDEO-CHRISTIAN WAY OF LIFE IS VANISHING. Easter used to be an integral part of American life—attendance at church on Easter Sunday, Easter sunrise services, and a week-long break from school designated as Easter vacation. Many stores are politically correct, having purged all vestiges of the true and traditional meaning of Easter. Now, Christ and Easter are banished, replaced by “Spring Break”, and everywhere children expect another sugar overload, just like Halloween.

Our mission here is to preserve and protect the Judeo-Christian culture, that precious way of life—to keep it alive for our children and grandchildren. Can we prevent the rising generation from becoming the Generation” lost”? If we do not tell them about our cherished values, they will never know. They need you, their parents, to pass on the values that are the only way to true happiness.

Pass on Judeo-Christian values to your children with this engaging and wholesome classic

Teach them about the Atonement of Jesus Christ, so that they can feel “encircled in His gentle arms.” This is best explained in a quote from Dieter F. Uchtdorf:

The Sacrifice of the Son of God

Each year at this time we commemorate and ponder the sacrifice Jesus Christ made for all mankind.

What the Savior did from Gethsemane to Golgotha on our behalf is beyond my ability to grasp. He took upon Himself the burden of our sins and paid an eternal and binding ransom not only for Adam’s original transgression but also for the sins and transgressions of the billions upon billions of souls who have ever lived. This eternal, sacred sacrifice caused “even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit” (D&C 19:18).

He suffered for me.

He suffered for you.

My soul overflows with gratitude when I contemplate the precious meaning of this sacrifice. It humbles me to know that all who accept this gift and incline their hearts to Him can be forgiven and cleansed of their sins, no matter how dark their blemish or how oppressive their burden.

We can be made spotless and pure once again. We can be redeemed by the eternal sacrifice of our beloved Savior.

Easter comes in the second week of April this year, but it is not something to think about one day per year, rather it is the essence of the Gospel, the very substance of our lives, the only key to true happiness.

So remember, Easter is not just a holiday—it’s a way of Life!

Thanks for visiting. Come often; Stay Late.

Christine Davidson

Highlights

Stress Relief Tip: Look to Christ

Easter: the Living Christ

  • Passion Flower Symbolism
  • Easter in Pictures

Book Review: Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates

Faith: Living Well in a world of Increasing Evil

Culture Wars: 10 Ways to Protect Religious Freedom

Defining Moment: Discipleship

So from now on, we are sharpening the focus of Western Culture Dinner Topics on what matters most— to continually define and defend Judeo-Christian values, more about Israel, our spiritual  brother in the house of Israel,  and to know our enemy, so as not to be deceived.

As Joshua Benamoz  taught us,

Battered but not beaten, Western Culture wins the day!

Stronger than ever, Western Culture’s here to stay!

Thanks for visiting. Come often, stay late.

Onward Christian Soldiers,

You might also like: Excerpt from new novel by C.A. Davidson, Birthright:

Why the Bible Matters

More about Birthright

 

News and Updates:

Now Available in digital and print at Amazon.

A  novel by C.A. Davidson—Christian fiction on Cultural Heritage. A historical novel so relevant it pops like today’s news! A wholesome classic to share with your children and grandchildren.

Click Here for More  Information and link to Amazon

 

NEW PAGE!

Western Culture Center:

300-year-old Ceiba tree

Meet the memorable characters of Birthright, join the Crusaders’ Council, with our motto—

Battered but not beaten, Western Culture wins the day!

Stronger than ever, Western Culture’s here to stay!

Knowing that truth matters and ideas have consequences, come meet with us in the arena of ideas at Nobles’ Western Culture Center as we work together to restore Judeo-Christian values to their rightful place in our society.

Start your free Constitution 101 course today.

The U.S. Constitution is the key to securing liberty for all Americans — yet very few know exactly what it says, and what freedoms it protects. Hillsdale College is dedicating its work to educating millions of Americans about this critical document. That’s why the College is offering its most popular course, “Constitution 101” for free, when you sign up now, and receive first lesson by email. Actually, all their online courses are free. There is no better place to get an education about our heritage than at Hillsdale.edu

NEW PAGE! If you miss the newsletter, or just want an inspirational message on cultural topics, you can visit our new Inspiration Page. Topics include Truth Matters, Moral Compass, Armor of God, History Heroes, Eternal Perspective,  and more.

Easter is about Jesus Christ Theme Quotes

He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. ~Matthew 28:6

For God so loved the world, he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. ~John 3:16

“As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” (1 Cor. 15:22.)

“No other single influence has had so great an impact on this earth as the life of Jesus the Christ.” ~Ezra Taft Benson

The Lord Made Repentance Possible; Lay Your Burdens at His Feet. ~Boyd K. Packer

He who suffered so selflessly for us in the garden and on the cross will not leave us comfortless now. He will strengthen, encourage, and bless us. He will encircle us in His gentle arms. ~Dieter F. Uchtdorf

I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine

To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine,

That he should extend his great love unto such as I,

Sufficient to own, to redeem, and to justify.

 

I think of his hands pierced and bleeding to pay the debt!

Such mercy, such love, and devotion can I forget?

No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat,

Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet. ~ Charles H. Gabriel

 

For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue confess to God. ~Romans 14:11

We can turn to Him . . .because He understands. He understands the struggle, and He also understands how to win the struggle . . . The power of His Atonement can erase the effects of sin in us. When we repent, His atoning grace justifies and cleanses us. It is as if we had not succumbed, as if we had not yielded to temptation. As we endeavor day by day and week by week to follow the path of Christ, our spirit asserts its preeminence, the battle within subsides, and temptations cease to trouble. ~D. Todd Christofferson

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise…but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. ~2Peter 3:9

Stress Relief Tip:  Look to Christ

Gordon B. Hinckley

We know not what lies ahead of us. We know not what the coming days may bring. We live in a world of uncertainty. For some, there will be great accomplishment. For others, disappointment. For some, much of rejoicing and gladness, good health, and gracious living. For others, perhaps sickness and a measure of sorrow. We do not know.

 

 

But one thing we do know.  Like the polar star in the heavens, regardless of what the future holds, there stands the Redeemer of the world, the Son of God, certain and sure as the anchor or our immortal lives. He is the rock of our salvation, our strength, our comfort, the very focus of our faith.

In sunshine and in shadow we look to Him, and He is there to assure and smile upon us.

I know that my Redeemer lives,

Triumphant Savior, Son of God,

Victorious over pain and death,

My King, my Leader, and my Lord.

 

He lives, my one sure rock of faith,

The one bright hope of men on earth,

The beacon to a better way,

The light beyond the veil of death.

 

Oh, give me thy sweet  Spirit still,

The peace that comes alone from thee,

The faith to walk the lonely road

That leads to thine eternity.

 

Featured articles

The Parenting Value for this month: Teaching Children Respect vs. Ego

Famous Birthdays: Booker T. Washington, Haym Salomon, Rachmaninoff, Thomas Jefferson, Prokofiev, William Shakespeare

Defining Moment: Discipleship

Book Review: Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates

Culture Wars: The Collapse of Comedy is no joke

  • Disney—Beauty and the Brainwashing
  • What the Left and Sharia Law have in Common

Easter: Teaching children about Easter

  • The Living Christ
  • Passion Flower symbolism
  • Gethsemane
  • Easter in Pictures

Faith: Living Well in a world of Increasing Evil

Hillsdale Imprimis: How Intelligence Works, When It Does

Moral Support: 10 ways to defend Religious Liberty

US Constitution Series 4: Church and State

Truth Matters: Know your enemy—the true nature of jihad, a stealth invasion

And as always—current events, updates, great cartoons, and analysis

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1. Let Us Educate Ourselves

Start your free Constitution 101 course today.

The U.S. Constitution is the key to securing liberty for all Americans — yet very few know exactly what it says, and what freedoms it protects. Hillsdale College is dedicating this year to educating millions of Americans about this critical document. That’s why the College is offering its most popular course, “Constitution 101” for free, when you sign up now, and receive first lesson by email. 

2. Home Education—Let’s Teach our Children!

 “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”–Ronald Reagan

Pass on Judeo-Christian values to your children with this engaging and wholesome classic

Seeing the widespread injury done in any given week, (many incidents go unreported), stay aware of important news and insights at Epicworld Dinner Topics.

Traditional Bible-believing parents may have to consider withdrawing their children from public schools to protect your family spiritually and financially from the rising tide of persecution and ruinous lawsuits by anti-Christian fascists.

If it is not possible for you to home school, try to teach your children Judeo-Christian values at home. The easiest way to do this is to tell stories and discuss principles at the family dinner table. I hope these dinner topics help you with this vital effort. Just don’t give up! Our precious children are worth fighting for!

Learn the Key to Survival in a Difficult World

3. Study the U.S. Constitution!

It is the last remaining safeguard of our precious freedoms! A good way to do this is to study the monthly Constitution series from The 5,000 Year Leap. To access this series of posts, type US Constitution Series in this site’s search bar. Also, look for posts that refer to the Constitution in current events.

George Washington Character, Book Review

Dinner Topics for Monday

Character Education was important to George Washington; he worked hard on it himself.

keyBeing George Washington by Glenn Beck is an insightful treatment of the life and service of this magnificent Founding Father. But also Beck gives a “character education” approach. He suggests how we can all use George Washington as a standard for our own good character development, and to prepare ourselves to make a difference. Truly inspirational. Following are highlights, but if you read the entire book with your family, you will treat them to an empowering character education experience.~C. A. Davidson

georgew_beingPart 1

Cultivating Character

No People can be bound to acknowledge and adore the Invisible Hand, which conducts the Affairs of men more than the People of the United States. ~George Washington, first inaugural address

The Great Author, Revealed

Revisionist historians have tried to diminish Washington’s faith in God, but it is clearly evident in his writings. Washington learned very much from his father, who (as the legend goes) once taught young George a lesson using cabbage seeds. He arranged them in such a way that they spelled “George.” When they began to grow, he showed them to his son and explained to him that they just grew that way by happenstance. When George correctly rejected that premise, suspecting it was his Dad who arranged them, he told George to look around at how perfectly everything else was placed. The trees. The grass. The water. The hills. The sky.

Was it mere coincidence, or was it part of a grand plan?

Washington immediately knew the answer. ~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.41

The Great Protector

A thousand enemy soldiers were captured, killed, or wounded in battle. But the toll on the rebels’ side was not nearly as dramatic. Washington lost two soldiers, and five others were injured. That’s it. It’s no wonder he believed so fervently in the Invisible Hand.

The list goes on and on, and while many say all of it was simply coincidence or luck, Washington himself did not believe that, writing to his brother: “I now exist and appear in the land of the living by the miraculous care of Providence, that protected me beyond all human expectation; I had 4 Bullets through my Coat and two horses shot under me, and yet escaped unhurt.” ~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.42

Washington believed, for very good reason, that God—the Invisible Hand, as he often called Him—oversaw their mission, and that uncovering Arnold’s plot was nothing less than providential. In a message to “the treason has been timely discovered to prevent the fatal misfortune. The providential train of circumstances which led to it affords the most convincing proof that the liberties of America are the object of divine protection.” ~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.108

In sheer desperation, Cornwallis attempted to lead an evacuation across the York River in whatever small boats he could muster. Apparently, God did not intend to let them go so easily, as a violent storm appeared out of nowhere. In a rush of ferocious wind and rain, the small British boats were swept downstream.

About the same time as the white flag was being raised in Yorktown, the proud British fleet finally sailed out of the New York harbor, the repairs to their ships from damage inflicted in the Chesapeake having taken almost two weeks longer than expected.

The fleet arrived at Yorktown a week too late. ~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.140

The power and goodness of the Almighty were strongly manifested in the events of our late glorius revolution; and his kind interposition in our behalf has been no less visible in the establishment of our present equal government. In war he directed the sword; and in peace he has ruled in our councils. My agency in both has been guided by the best intentions, and a sense of the duty which I owe my country. ~George Washington to the Hebrew congregations

Character Education

I know that getting a formal education in political science or economics is wonderful, but I can also confidently tell you that a formal education can also mean polically motivated teachers and a lot of closed-minded thinking. After all, how many professors do you know that will teach kids Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, or Thomas Sowell: nom many. Sometimes educating yourself is not only a necessity but a blessing. It allows you to explore ideas in a way professors like to inhibit with their preconceived ideological notions. As the columnist Heather MacDonald recently pointed out, in the past academic year at Bowdoin College, “a student interested in American history courses could have taken ‘Black Women in Atlantic New Orleans,’ ‘Women in American History, 1600-1900,’ or ‘Lawn Boy Meets Valley Girl: Gender and the Suburbs,’ but if he wanted a course in American political history, the colonial and revolutionary periods, or the Civil War, he would have been out of luck.”

America allowed the Founders to test ideas that were considered radical elsewhere. They were allowed to think freely without worry of repercussion. Though highly educated in classical texts, most of the Founders were not weighed down by conventional thinking or pseudoscience and gender studies. That was a blessing.

Washington remained self-conscious about his lace of a formal education his entire life. Ironically, it was this fact that drove his intellectual curiosity and ensured that he would always be overly prepared for any debate. ~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.203

Rules of Civility

Some of the Rules of Civility that Washington copied as a young boy.

  • “Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for ‘tis better to be alone than in bad company.”
  • “Let your conversation be without malice or envy. And in all causes of passion admit reason to govern.”
  • “When you speak of God and his attributes, let it be seriously and with reverence.”
  • “Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.”

~Glenn Beck, Being George Washington, p.245

 

Next, part 2

YouTube Music for the Soul: Classic Handel

Dinner Topics for Friday

View and Listen to Handel’s Messiah

Book Review

George Friedrich Handel loved to play the harpsichord, but his father didn’t approve, so Handel practiced in secret.

Handel’s music was well-known to composers including Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven.

keyTo Beethoven he was “the master of us all… the greatest composer that ever lived. I would uncover my head and kneel before his tomb”.[61] Beethoven emphasized above all the simplicity and popular appeal of Handel’s music when he said, “Go to him to learn how to achieve great effects, by such simple means”.

American Culture Dinner Talk Journal Article: Handel and the Gift of Messiah

Book Review:

Great Quotes

“I wish to breathe my last word on Good Friday, in hopes of meeting mine good God and sweet Lord and Savior on the day of His resurrection.”
“I did think I did see all heaven before me, and the great God Himself sitting upon His throne.”
~George Frederic Handel to his manservant Peter LeBlonde


Hallelujah!

A novel by J. Scott Featherstone
The Story of the coming forth of Handel’s Messiah

This is the remarkable story of one of the greatest events in musical history, the creation of George Frederic Handel’s masterpiece, Messiah.  Composed in just twenty-four days, Handel’s “Grand Oratorio which rendered him immortal” was birthed in the darkest and most desperate hours of his life. His health was failing. Critics ridiculed him. Creditors hounded him. Enemies persecuted him. Pride had nearly destroyed him. Yet, out of Handel’s night emerged the dawn of Messiah.

Anyone who has thrilled at hearing the Hallelujah Chorus will feel “profound attachment” to Handel’s story of hope and redemption as timeless and poignant as the music itself.

From far away, as if wending its way toward him in the night breeze, something began to develop in Handel’s mind. It was so faint and distant that he could not recognize it but only anticipate its arrival. He waited in the stillness for the shape to take the form of sound. He imagined he could see the sound coming toward him, a veiled line of blue streaming toward him through an ocean of black.

Then softly, like a voice from a distant source it came to him-a single violin of transcendent purity, echoing across this mind like music ringing down the valleys of Halle in the cool of the night. So distinct and clear was the melody that he could see the notes on paper as he heard them.

~From Hallelujah!

Gethsemane2This book is written as a type of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. That is, it tells of people who are thrown into debtor’s prison. Handel, having been in serious debt himself, had compassion for these people.  When he created The Messiah, he would not perform it for money. He dedicated it to the Children’s Foundling Hospital in Halle, Germany, his home town. For years it was performed by the children’s choir there. Every year, when it was performed, Handel would use donations to liberate people from debtor’s prison.  What a fitting event to be connected to the performance of the glorious Messiah! For over a hundred years after Handel’s death the pages of music for the great oratorio languished in oblivion. Then, on a cold January day in 1896, Dr. Davan Whetton, seeking funds for The Foundling Hospital of which he was principal and organist, rediscovered Handel’s Messiah in a tiny, unknown room behind the pulpit.  Author Featherstone portrays the moving story of Handel’s Messiah in a very powerful way. The book is now out of print; you may find a used one online. It is a worthwhile, unforgettable read.

Life of George Handel

By Spencer J. Condie

George Frideric Handel, born February 23, 1685

George Frideric Handel seemed to have been born a musician. As a young lad in Germany, he became proficient on both the violin and the organ. After composing his first opera in Germany, he moved to Italy, the operatic center of the world, to try his hand at musical composition in the Italian style. There he achieved some success in composing operas and chamber music.

In 1711, at age 26, Handel decided to move to England, where his operas and oratorios initially gained acceptance. By the late 1730s, however, British audiences had become less enthusiastic about operas sung in German or Italian; instead, they favored comedic performances such as The Beggar’s Opera. Thus, for several years Handel struggled to keep the wolves—his creditors—away from the door.

In 1737, after pushing himself to his physical limits by composing four operas within 12 months, the 52-year-old composer suffered a stroke, leaving his right arm temporarily paralyzed. A doctor told Handel’s faithful secretary: “We may save the man—but the musician is lost forever. It seems to me that his brain has been permanently injured.”1

The composer defied the diagnosis. Over time his body responded to treatment in the thermal springs at Aix-la-Chapelle (Aachen, Germany), and he recovered his physical strength. After testing his ability to play the organ at a nearby cathedral, he jubilantly proclaimed, “I have come back from Hades.”2

When he returned to London and resumed composing operas, his work was not well received, and creditors began to hound him again. In the depths of despondency, he began to wonder, “Why did God permit my resurrection, only to allow my fellow-men to bury me again?”3In April 1741 Handel held what he assumed would be a farewell concert. His creativity was spent. A biographer wrote: “There was nothing to begin or to finish. Handel was faced with emptiness.”4

Late one August afternoon that same year, Handel returned from a long and tiring walk to find that a poet and previous collaborator, Charles Jennens, had left him a manuscript. This libretto quoted liberally from the scriptures, particularly the words of Isaiah, foretelling the birth of Jesus Christ and describing His ministry, Crucifixion, and Resurrection. The work was to be an oratorio. Given his previous failures, Handel was apprehensive as he began to read through the text.

“Comfort Ye,” the first words of the manuscript, seemed to leap from the page. They dissipated dark clouds that had been pressing upon Handel for so long. His depression waned and his emotions warmed from interest to excitement as he continued to read of angelic proclamations of the Savior’s birth and of Isaiah’s prophecies of the Messiah, who would come to earth to be born as other mortal infants. A familiar melody Handel had composed earlier flooded into his mind as he read “For unto Us a Child Is Born.” The notes distilled upon his mind faster than he could put pencil to paper as he captured the image of the loving Good Shepherd in the aria titled “He Shall Feed His Flock.” Then came the overpowering exultation reflected in the “Hallelujah Chorus,” followed by the soft, supernal testimony of “I Know That My Redeemer Liveth.” The work came to its majestic conclusion with “Worthy Is the Lamb.”

musicnotesAfter all the music he had composed throughout his lifetime, Handel would eventually be known worldwide for this singular work, Messiah, largely composed in just three weeks during the late summer of 1741. Upon completing his composition, he humbly acknowledged, “God has visited me.”5Those who feel the touch of the Holy Spirit as they experience the overpowering testimony of Handel’s Messiah would agree.

To the sponsors of the first performance of the oratorio, Handel stipulated that profits from this and all future performances of Messiah “be donated to prisoners, orphans, and the sick. I have myself been a very sick man, and am now cured,” he said. “I was a prisoner, and have been set free.”6

Following the first London performance of Messiah, a patron congratulated Handel on the excellent “entertainment.”

“My lord, I should be sorry if I only entertained them,” Handel humbly replied. “I wish to make them better.”7

He had finally been relieved of his restless quest for fame, fortune, and public praise—but only after composing his crowning work for an audience that included those not of this earth. The things that mattered most were no longer at the mercy of the things that mattered least. Handel, the restless composer, was now at rest.

Lessons from Handel’s Life

HaendelWhat lessons may we learn from the life of George Frideric Handel and the composition of a piece of music that has become a spiritual landmark?

  1. We must develop confidence in our abilities and learn to live with criticism of our work. In the words of poet Rudyard Kipling: “Trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowance for their doubting too.”8
  2. Quantity is no substitute for quality and variety. Handel’s earlier operas have largely been forgotten. Their predictable, formulaic templates simply failed to inspire; each opera sounded much like the others he had composed.
  3. When we act on inspiration, we are doing the work of heaven. We cannot force the Spirit, but when inspiration and revelation come, we must listen and act upon the promptings. The Lord has promised that “the power of my Spirit quickeneth all things” (D&C 33:16).
  4. We must acknowledge our source of inspiration and revelation. We are only instruments in the work we do that blesses others. We must realize, as Handel did when he deflected the honor given upon his achievement, that “God has visited [us].”
  5. We must never underestimate the power of the word. There is a power in the word of God that far surpasses the narratives of this world’s most gifted writers (see Alma 31:5).
  6. Real spiritual meaning in a work is conveyed by the witness of the Holy Ghost. “When [an individual speaks or sings] by the power of the Holy Ghost the power of the Holy Ghost carrieth it unto the hearts of the children of men” (2 Nephi 33:1).
  7. Power is in God and His works, not in our words. Speaking of the professors of religion of the day, the Savior told Joseph Smith, “They draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, … having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof” (Joseph Smith—History 1:19). Handel had composed other oratorios and operas with biblical texts, but the form of his music did not match the power of the scriptures—Isaiah’s powerful prophecies of the Savior’s birth and ministry or the fulfillment of those prophecies as found in Revelation and the Gospels of Luke and John. In Handel’s Messiah, we find both the form of godliness and the power thereof. In Messiah, lips and hearts are drawn nearer to heaven.

Each of us, like George Frideric Handel, is engaged in a creative spiritual enterprise in this life. Both the physical fostering of mortal life and the righteous living of our days on earth are spiritual achievements. I pray that we may be sensitive to inspiration from on high, that we may be inspired in such a way that the fruits of our labors are inspiring to others. As we seek to rescue others, may we not be bound by time-tested templates and self-imposed perceptions that restrict our spiritual creativity and lock out revelation.

In her epic poem, Aurora Leigh, Elizabeth Barrett Browning expressed the eloquent thought:

Earth’s crammed with heaven,

And every common bush afire with God;

But only he who sees takes off his shoes;

The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries. 9

May each of us unlatch our shoes and cram our labors with the essence of heaven, and may none of us be found plucking blackberries when a much grander, loftier work needs to be done.

And at the end of our divinely ordained days, may we be able to acknowledge, with Handel, that God has visited us in our labors.

More about George Handel

 

Book Review: Historic Rescue of World War 2 Soldiers

Book Review:

Historic Rescue of World War 2 Soldiers

The Forgotten 500

Gregory A. Freeman

keyThe communists have always been experts at lies, deceit, and disinformation. This heart-wrenching story of courage and loyalty betrayed and smeared is but one example of their treachery. It took way too long for the truth to surface in this case. The media, which have bought into these lies and disinformation  for decades,  is in full swing today as well. It is our responsibility to discern and ferret out the truth, and do so relentlessly, so  that truth and innocent people are spared the evils of being sacrificed for political expediency. ~C.D.

 

forgotten-500-bookHere is the astonishing never-before-told story of the greatest rescue mission of World War II—when the OSS set out to recover more than five hundred airmen trapped behind enemy lines in Yugoslavia. . . .

During a bombing campaign over Romanian oil fields, hundreds of American airmen were shot down in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia. Local Serbian farmers and peasants risked their own lives to give refuge to the soldiers while they waited for rescue, and in 1944, Operation Halyard was born. The risks were incredible. The starving Americans in Yugoslavia had to construct a landing strip large enough for C-47 cargo planes—without tools, without alerting the Germans, and without endangering the villagers. And the cargo planes had to make it through enemy airspace and back without getting shot down themselves.

Suppressed for more than half a century for political reasons, the full account of this unforgettable story of loyalty, self-sacrifice, and bravery is now being told for the first time ever. The Forgotten 500 is the gripping behind-the-scenes look at the greatest escape of World War II.

 

 

Disinformation and Betrayal

Draza Mihailovich, Serbian hero who steadfastly protected American airmen from Nazis

Draza Mihailovich, Serbian hero who steadfastly protected American airmen from Nazis

Serbian leader Draza Mihailovich was opposed to both Nazism and Communism and fiercely loyal to the Allies. However, Klugmann, one of several communist moles in Great Britain, spread disinformation and lies about him, and convinced Churchill and FDR that Mihailovich was in league with the Nazis. This kept Britain and American governments from supporting the Serbian locals of Yugoslavia, who were unwaveringly loyal to the Allies, who gave the American airmen the food off their own tables. The loving support of those villagers for those Americans is deeply moving.

Thanks to the help of those locals, 512 airmen were rescued, with no lives lost. Nevertheless, due to the influence of Klugmann and his minions, Mihailovich was subjected to a war crimes trial after the war, and convicted.

Americans were outraged when they learned of the government treachery. Churchill finally learned the truth, how he had been deceived, but it was too late. Only after the damage was done, was Eisenhower able to persuade Truman to give Mihailovich a posthumous  Legion of Merit award. Even then, the award was given in secret, and kept secret for 20 years, because the State Department was “concerned” about ruffling relations with the communist dictator Josip Tito, who handed Yugoslavia over the communists after the war.

 

Reagan Tribute to Mihailovich, and Warning

Ronald-Reagan-AP                Avowed anti-Communist Ronald Reagan, then governor of California and about to become president in the next year, paid respect to Mihailovich on September 8, 1979. He wrote to the California Citizent’s Committee to Commemorate General Draza Mihailovich:

I wish that it could be said that this great hero was the last victim of confused and senseless policies of Western governments i dealing with Communism. The fact is that others have suffered a fate similar to his by being embraced and then abandoned by Western government in the hope that such abandonment will purchase peace or security. Thus, the fate of General Mihailovich is not simply of historic significance—it teaches us something today as well. No Western nation, including the United States, can hope to win its own battle for freedom and survival by sacrificing brace comrades to the politics of international expediency.

 

Reagan went on to say that the betrayal of Mihailovich showed “beyond doubt that both freedom and honor suffer when firm commitments become sacrificed to false hopes of appeasing aggressors by abandoning friends.”

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Book Review: Parenting Guide urges Character Education, not Kool-Aid

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Book Review: Parenting Guide urges Character Education, not Kool-Aid Don’t let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid Marybeth Hicks, Washington Times columnist and founder of OntheCulture.com Mrs. Hicks catalogs  how the Left has undermined our American character for half a century: … Continue reading