Culture Wars: 10 Ways to Protect Religious Freedom

Culture Wars:

10 Ways to Protect Religious Freedom

Lift Where You Stand: 10 Ways to Protect Religious Freedom

“I sometimes fear that we have relied too much on the Constitution to do the hard work of citizenship for us. The Constitution—including the First Amendment—was never intended to make us lazy citizens, to absolve us from the duty and imperative to be vigilant in defense of our religious rights and interests.” ~ Lance B. Wickman

D. Todd Christofferson

Knowing how to protect religious freedom can seem daunting. It might seem like you need a legal or political background to make a difference. But there are simple things you can do in your neighborhood or community that can have big effects over time. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of building trust with others so that you have relationships already established when you need to come together on complex issues. Here are some simple ways to protect religious freedom in everyday life:

1. Study up on the issues. Study the words of the living Apostles on religious freedom and moral issues. Read responsible websites, newspapers, magazines, and blogs that explore current events from a variety of perspectives, asking God to let the Spirit help you discern truth. Let your beliefs and the facts inform your views. Be ready to act. Know your rights established by the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances” (italics added).

2. Speak up with courage and civility. Don’t be intimidated into silence by intolerant voices. Speak up! State your views with true civility and kindness (for ideas, see “7 Keys to Successful Conversations”). Speak or write calmly. Seek true understanding. Acknowledge legitimate points. And explain why the freedoms you defend are so important to you, your loved ones, and the Church—make it personal. Keep in mind that one-on-one conversations are usually more meaningful and respectful than group discussions, especially if they’re online. Stand firmly for principle while understanding that in some areas we will have to seek compromise to protect our most vital freedoms.

voter placing ballot3. Get involved in the political process. Vote in your local, state, and national elections. Support candidates who understand the proper role of religion in society and the need to protect it for everyone. Learn about how laws are made. You could also attend city council meetings, join a political party, write your representatives, and combine your efforts with others who support religious freedom.

4.Get to know people of other faiths. Talk with them about matters of shared concern. Participate in an interfaith service project. Support their religious freedom.

5.Volunteer for a charity. Help solve problems in your community by giving of your time to a local charitable or service organization. When people of faith do good, they increase their ability to convince others that religious freedom should be respected and protected.

6. Get involved in education. Participate in your local PTA. Run for the school board. Lend your voice and resources to solving problems in your school. Help preserve reasonable space for religious values in educational settings. Support the right of parents to guide their children’s education. Support values-based extracurricular activities like religious clubs or Bible-study classes.

Parenting Resources for Teaching Families to Defend Religious Freedom

7. Be part of a club, business group, or professional association. Build relationships and gain perspectives by joining with community members in a book club, a debate team, a college alumni group, a conservation effort, a Scout troop, a speech forum, or a sports team. Be where the conversations are happening. That will give you opportunities to educate others about the importance of religious freedom and challenges to it. Likewise, business groups and professional associations exert great influence on policy makers and on other business people and professionals. They need your voice in support of faith, family, and religious freedom.

8. Extend the reach of your faith. Connect ward service activities with the needs of the community where possible. Cooperation between church groups and community organizations helps build mutual trust and focuses resources on helping those in need.  Again, when people of faith do good works, others will be more likely to respect their need for religious freedom.

9. Make it a family matter and a matter of prayer. Take your children to a speech or conference on religious freedom. Watch a movie or documentary on the role and history of religious freedom in society. Conduct a lesson or activity about the United States Constitution, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and other foundational documents. Invite a family of another faith into your home.

Cyrus, non-Jewish ruler who helped the Jews get their country back

Pray that our freedoms will be preserved. Pray and exercise faith that governments at home and abroad will be opened—or remain open—to the Church. As the Lord long ago “stirred” Cyrus, the King of Persia, to issue a decree allowing the Jews to rebuild a temple in Jerusalem (see Ezra 1:1), so can He stir other leaders with influence to help preserve religious freedom. Pray as you study about religious freedom that you can understand what you need to know and do. Pray for the Spirit to help direct you in conversations.

Teach your children why Religious Freedom Matters

10. Enlarge your voice through social media. Be persuasive by being civil in online conversations; the person who gets angry loses. Share appropriate links, stories, photos, articles, and personal experiences on social media. Start a blog, write an op-ed, or submit a letter to the editor. Learn from those who might disagree with you as you defend gospel standards and religious freedom. Sometimes even just sharing goodness you see in the world can help people recognize that your beliefs are about bringing peace, not contention, to the world.

Follow Western Culture Dinner Topics, Defender of Religious Freedom

 

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Moral Support: Religious Freedom supported, Defund Planned Parenthood, Trump Immigration Policy, Economic policy vindicated

Moral Support:

Religious Freedom supported, Defund Planned Parenthood, Trump Immigration Policy, Economic policy vindicated

Dogs bark, but the wagons roll on. ~Louis L’Amour

 

Religious Freedom and Traditional Family; Defund Planned Parenthood

VP Pence Breaks Senate Tie over Planned Parenthood State Funding Mandate

by Dr. Susan Berry

Justice Dept. Drops Pro-Transgender Lawsuit

by Neil Munro

Good Friday: Trump Appoints Religious Liberty Defender to Head HHS Office for Civil Rights

by Dr. Susan Berry

Feds Promise to Protect Half a Million American Girls from Genital Mutilation

The Department of Justice is committed to stopping female genital mutilation in this country, and will use the full power of the law to ensure that no girls suffer such physical and emotional abuse,” the acting Assistant Attorney General of the justice department’s criminal division, Kenneth Blanco, said April 13.

POTUS Signs Repeal of Obama Planned Parenthood State Funding Mandate

Ancestry.com helps family of dead boy find man posing as him

 

Trump Immigration Policy Vindicated

Lansing, Michigan, Will No Longer Declare Itself a ‘Sanctuary City’

by Katherine Rodriguez

Most Americans, especially minorities, say no to sanctuary cities

Poll: Only 1 in 3 wants own community to protect illegals

http://www.wnd.com/2017/03/most-americans-especially-minorities-say-no-to-sanctuary-cities/

Ann Corcoran: Trump Effect: More Central American migrants want asylum in Mexico, not moving on to US

And, that is how asylum is supposed to work.

Anyone who meets the legal definition of a refugee*** is supposed to seek asylum in the first safe country they reach—

National Security

 

Donald Trump and Israel PM Netanyahu

Bibi Welcomes New U.S. Amb. — ‘to Jerusalem’

 

Foreign Policy: Trump Has a Strategy for Destroying Islamic State – and It’s Working

 

Trump Economic Policy, Drain the Swamp

Trump Admin Releases ‘Drain the Swamp’ Guidance

Ben Garrison

Trump Halts U.S. Funding of UN Population Fund

Trade Deficit Falls by 10% as U.S. Factories Benefit from Economic Stability

Shock Berkeley Poll: California Voters Want DemS to Work with Trump

EPA Chief Pruitt Calls for ‘Exit’ from Paris Climate Agreement

 

Culture Wars Warning! Why Religious Freedom Matters; What’s at Stake

Culture Wars Warning!

Why Religious Freedom Matters; What’s at Stake

Freedom to choose. That’s what the War in Heaven was all about. We couldn’t afford to lose agency then, and we can’t afford to lose it now. And that includes the freedom to “worship how, where, or what [we] may” (Articles of Faith 1:11). That’s why the Prophet Joseph Smith said, “I am bold to declare before Heaven that I am just as ready to die in defending the rights of a Presbyterian, a Baptist, or a good man of any other denomination [as for a Mormon]; for the same principle which would trample upon the rights of the Latter-day Saints would trample upon the rights of the Roman Catholics, or of any other denomination who may be unpopular and too weak to defend themselves” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 345).

In addition to maintaining religious freedom as an eternal principle (even God will not remove the agency of any of His children), there are some potentially severe consequences if we lose the freedom to worship, speak, and live according to our beliefs.

  • You could lose your job or leadership positions for expressing religious beliefs—even outside of work. For instance, CEOs, newscasters, judges, teachers, doctors, professors, firefighters, Olympians, graduate students, and many others have been fired, pressured to resign, or intimidated for donating money or simply saying that they support the traditional view of marriage.
  • You might be required to hide your religion or perform tasks at work that go against your beliefs. Does it seem fair, for example, that a doctor who opposes abortion on a religious or moral basis be required to perform one even though numerous other doctors nearby are willing? Should you be forced to wear an immodest uniform when it’s not necessary for your job function?
  • You may be required to work on the Sabbath or religious holidays even when others are willing to take your shift and your employer accommodates other nonreligious interests.
  • Your children in public schools may be required to learn about sexual and gender theories that contradict basic Church teachings. Many public schools already teach sex education in a way that’s fundamentally contrary to Church teachings, and some have required reading lists with explicit content.
  • You may not be able to adopt children or become a foster parent because of your religious beliefs or views on the family.
  • As a business owner or professional, you might lose your license or be fined if you refuse to perform services that are contrary to your religious beliefs. You might even lose professional credentials if you don’t participate in certain activities, even if other coworkers are willing to perform them in your place.
  • You might not be able to create faith-based clubs on college campuses without being required to let people become club members—or even officers—who oppose the club’s religious beliefs.
  • Churches may be forced to employ people who disagree with or refuse to live core values of their faith, threatening their ability to carry out their religious missions.
  • Churches could lose their tax-exempt status by maintaining doctrines, policies, and standards that conflict with secular beliefs regarding marriage, family, gender, and sexuality, resulting in a huge increase in costs to build houses of worship or to purchase and provide goods for humanitarian aid.
  • You might lose tax exemptions for charitable donations like tithes and offerings if the Church loses its status as a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization.
  • Churches may not be able to access government lands for camps on equal terms with other groups, limiting youth conferences and camps.
  • Housing units, such as dorms, at religious colleges could be forced to abandon moral standards that protect privacy, modesty, and morality, denying people the right to room with those who uphold the same standards.
  • Religious schools that maintain honor codes may lose their accreditation and be denied research funds and even federal student loans and grants, diminishing the value of their degrees, undermining the quality of their education, and making it financially impossible for many students to attend.
  • There’s a lot at stake, and this is just a sampling. As society continues to move away from eternal truths and God-given commandments, we can’t predict all the consequences that may result if religious freedom and the right to act on our beliefs are taken away.
  • So we need to raise our voices to defend religious freedom. If we don’t raise them for the protection of religion now, vital religious freedoms will be lost. 
  • When we join the cause together, we can make a difference that will protect religious freedom for followers of all religions.

Teach your family why Religious Freedom Matters

 

https://www.lds.org/religious-freedom/understand/why-it-matters-whats-at-stake

American Family Association News: Political Correctness on Masculinity; Religious Freedom; Planned Parenthood

American Family Association News/ Christian News:

Political Correctness on Masculinity; Religious Freedom; Planned Parenthood

keyEvery month American Family Association provides Issues at Hand in a useful summary of the Christian Worldview, so you can be up-to-date with many issues important to you, all in one post. ~C.D.

Political Correctness: Masculinity dangerous … really?

afa-masculinity2December 2016 – A student advertisement for an event at Claremont College in California read, “Masculinity can be extremely toxic to our mental health, both to the people who are pressured to perform it and the people who are inevitably influenced by it.”

As writer LaShawn Barber for World Magazine pointed out, such language used in relation to women would be described as misogyny.

Students stated that the event was comprised of mostly women, and that the consensus was that masculinity “is harmful to those who express it and those affected by it.”

world.wng.org, 10/5/16

Churches take stand for Religious Freedom

afa-transgender-restroomDecember 2016 – Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a lawsuit on behalf of four Massachusetts churches over a new law that allows individuals legal access to bathrooms or locker rooms based on perceived gender identification versus biological sex. The state has identified churches as places of public accommodation and therefore bound by the law.

Plaintiffs are Horizon Christian Fellowship, Abundant Life Church, House of Destiny Ministries, and Faith Christian Fellowship in Haverville. Defendants are members of the Massachusetts Commission against Discrimination and state Attorney General Maura Healey.

The law also prohibits covered entities from making statements intended to discriminate or to incite others to do so. ADF argues the state intends to “force churches and pastors to refrain from religious expression regarding sexuality that conflicts with the government’s views.”

onenewsnow, 10/11/16, 10/12/16

Planned Parenthood celebrates 100 years, 7 million dead babies

If these are aborted or genetically altered?

If these are aborted or genetically altered?

Margaret Louise Sanger (1879-1966) (above) was an activist for birth control, population control, and eugenics. Her legacy is being carried on by Planned Parenthood, which pretends to help the poor while hiding the reality that it targets the vulnerable.

December 2016 – In October, Planned Parenthood Federation of America celebrated its 100th year since Margaret Sanger opened the first clinic in Brooklyn, New York. She believed in “improving” the human race by discouraging reproduction among persons she presumed to have undesirable traits.

What began with birth control in 1916 has become the largest abortion provider in the country. Planned Parenthood’s latest annual report (2014) shows that 43% of the abortion provider’s revenues came from taxpayers via state and federal government health services grants and reimbursements in the amount of $553.7 million.

While Planned Parenthood celebrated 100 years of death, pro-lifers and Christians observed the century milestone in a different way, by gathering to pray for an end to the destruction Planned Parenthood has perpetuated over the years.

“They have an underlying and faithful ally in the media and Hollywood,” said Eric Scheidler, spokesman for Pro-Life Action League.

“We cannot match Planned Parenthood dollar for dollar, yet we can confront them with something they have none of. They don’t have the power of our Lord and prayer.”

Prayer vigils were held at more than 100 Planned Parenthood clinics throughout the country on October 15.

cnsnews.com, 10/17/16; onenewsnow.com, 10/14/16

Suit claims companies illegally profited from sale of fetal tissue

afa-abortion-baby-partsThe Daily Signal, the multimedia news organization of The Heritage Foundation, created the graphic above by distilling invoices and price lists subpoenaed by the U.S. House Select Panel on Infant Lives in April 2016.

December 2016 – Two California medical companies have been accused of illegally profiting from the sale of fetal tissue in a lawsuit filed by the Orange County district attorney’s office on October 11. Prosecutors are seeking a $1.6 million fine as well as an injunction to prevent future profits.

Undercover videos circulated last year by the Center for Medical Progress vividly informed the public about the harvesting of aborted baby organs. The lawsuit does not name abortion providers but claims DaVinci Biosciences and DV Biologics collected tens of thousands of dollars in profit from fetal tissue and stem cells they received from abortion providers.

While it is legal for organizations to charge a fee to recover expenses incurred in the process of collecting and donating fetal tissue, the lawsuit alleges the companies sold to research groups at least 500 times between 2012 and 2015 for more than what it cost to process, handle, and ship the body parts.

onenewsnow.com, 10/12/16; dailysignal.com, 4/20/16

Religion contributes $1.2 trillion to society

afa-piechart2December 2016 – A study published in September in the Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion details the $1.2 trillion contribution that religion makes to the U.S. annual economy. In areas from health care to education to philanthropy, the benefit of religion for the American economy is greater than the top ten tech companies combined, including Google, Apple, and Microsoft.

Interestingly, the impact of church congregations is the second greatest player in the economics of religion, constituting 36.1% of the total $1.2 trillion. Businesses with religious backgrounds are number one, making 37.8% of the contribution. Charitable institutions generate 26.1%.

The impact is not only monetary. Highly religious individuals are more likely to donate money and goods and time to volunteer, according to Pew Research polling that asked adults about their activities in the prior week. Congregations coordinate 7.5 million volunteers in 1.5 million social programs, and religious organizations have tripled the amount of money they spend on social programs in the last 15 years.

cruxnow.com, 9/14/16; faithcounts.com

Anti-Freedom of Speech: Attorneys can’t discuss ‘harmful’ subjects

afa-free-speech-censoredDecember 2016 – New ethics rules established by the American Bar Association in August prohibit attorneys from “harmful” verbal conduct that could include discussing or debating same sex marriage, religion, or immigration. Under the speech code, attorneys could be disciplined or removed from the bar if they are seen as manifesting bias or prejudice.

“What it really does is shut down everyone from saying anything that might be controversial for advocating for your clients vigorously or even selecting clients,” said UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh.

onenewsnow.com, 8/12/16

Anti-police rhetoric has consequences

afa-anti-police-rhetoricDecember 2016 – With all the recent media attention on police officers, those who wear a badge are feeling extra pressure. For example, a female officer in Chicago, Illinois, recently felt the stress while being attacked by a 28-year-old male high on PCP.

The man attacked her viciously, slamming her head into the pavement. She was taken to the hospital where she was treated for multiple injuries, and bits of concrete had to be removed from her face.

Eddie Johnson, police superintendent, said, “This attack went on for several minutes. As I was at the hospital last night visiting with her, she looked at me and said she thought she was going to die, and she knew that she should shoot this guy. But she chose not to because she didn’t want her family or the department to have to go through the scrutiny the next day on the national news.”

wgntv.com, 10/14/16

Marketing human trafficking

December 2016 – New Mexico Advocacy Coalition, an anti-human trafficking group, is launching a campaign against major booksellers that sell how-to manuals for pimps. The group found at least 15 such titles on Amazon.com, along with reviews such as “required reading for the pimp in training. Written as an instructional manual.”

While Amazon has a vague restriction against offensive sexual content in books, the New Mexico Advocacy Coalition is petitioning the online seller to step up enforcement of guidelines and stop selling such books. Jet.com, Barnes and Noble, and Wal-Mart were also found to be selling some of the same titles.

world.wng.org, 8/9/16

U.N. voting on worldwide LGBT advocate

afa-un-rainbowDecember 2016 – In June, the U.N.’s Human Rights Council in Geneva voted to establish an LGBT ombudsman, an official designated to monitor complaints of infringement of LGBT rights and launch investigations in different countries. The ombudsman would determine how U.N. affiliated organizations interact with countries based on how they treat special rights for homosexuals.

Stefano Gennarini, spokesperson for Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, suggested that such a position would pressure countries to enact homosexual rights and give the LGBT agenda a foothold of power with the U.N. A November vote was planned to determine the outcome of the decision.

National Security: Open Borders, Progressivism, Identity Politics vs. American Sovereignty and Religious Freedom

Critical Thinking—

National Security:

Open Borders, Progressivism, Identity Politics vs. American Sovereignty and Religious Freedom

sovereignty—freedom from external control; autonomy, one that is sovereign, an autonomous state

keyThis is a brilliant piece on the Syrian Refugee question. This is considerably more in-depth than most of us tend to view this issue. So I put it in the Critical Thinking Category and added subheadings to emphasize and clarify the core principle here:

Invasion of our nation by illegal aliens is a direct assault on our culture, our sovereignty, and our religious freedom.

Should asylum be extended to the adherents of religions that do not recognize the free exercise rights of other religions? [AS IN SHARIA LAW, the law dictated by Islam —which does not recognize freedom of other religions, and is diametrically opposed to the U.S. Constitution. ~C.D.]

There is much confusion regarding church vs. state.

For Clarification, See also:

Critical Thinking: Defining Church and State

Who We Are As a People—The Syrian Refugee Question

Reprinted by permission from Hillsdale Imprimis

Edward J. Erler
Co-author, The Founders on Citizenship and Immigration

Screening of Refugees is not Unreasonable

illegal-immigration-differenceNothing has provoked the ire of America’s bipartisan political class as much as Donald Trump’s recent proposal that the U.S. should suspend the acceptance of refugees from Syria and other terrorist-supporting nations until we find a way of perfecting the screening process to ensure that we are not admitting terrorists or terror sympathizers.

On its face this proposal was not unreasonable. Most of these refugees do not have adequate documentation, intelligence agencies do not have sufficient information to determine whether or not they have terrorist connections or intend to engage in terrorism, and the heads of our security agencies have warned that active terrorists will inevitably slip through security screening cracks. Nor is it as if there was no reasonable alternative.

Humane Alternative—Security Zones to obligate Muslim nations to finance Care of Refugees

Wouldn’t it have been better, as Trump and others have suggested, to address the refugee crisis by setting up security zones in Syria or other Middle Eastern countries where refugees could find safety and where Muslim nations might feel obligated to help finance their care? In addition to making sense from a national security perspective, this would also have been a more humane solution, since it would not have uprooted the refugees from their homelands and injected them into an alien way of life.

Why are our political leaders, despite these facts, willing to expose the nation to such potential danger?—a danger that is surely greater than we now imagine. One only has to observe the results of the refugee crisis in Europe to see what is in store for the American homeland.

Yet the Obama administration, following Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government in Germany, is adamant that the number of Syrian refugees—and Muslim refugees generally—must increase substantially.

Diversity over National Security

multi-culturalism-messFormer Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who recently named Merkel as her favorite world leader, has frequently indicated that acceptance of refugees is an important reaffirmation of America’s commitment to diversity. It is a reaffirmation of “who we are as Americans,” she has said, as if the American character is defined by its unlimited openness to diversity.

To show the bipartisan nature of this commitment, Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan has used the same phrase to explain his approval of the refugee program.

In both cases, the clear implication is that America’s commitment to diversity outweighs considerations of national security.

Self-willed Delusion

Indeed, in what can only be called a self-willed delusion, proponents of the refugee program seem to believe that their commitment to diversity makes us stronger and more secure as a nation, and that any opposition to the program is racist, xenophobic, and most particularly Islamophobic.

Germany under Globalist Merkel

Syrian refugees entering Europe

Syrian refugees entering Europe

Consider what this means. Germans have been warned that it is their duty to accommodate themselves to newly arrived refugees and not to place politically incorrect demands upon them—that is, not to demand that the refugees adapt to German ways.

Some have advised German women in particular that if they don’t wish to be harassed by male refugees, they should cover their heads and be accompanied outside of the home by a male. Will this be a part of America’s politically correct future?

Merkel, like Obama, bases her immigration policy on a globalist view of the world. Secretary of State John Kerry propounded this view in a recent commencement address, warning Americans that we must prepare ourselves for a “borderless world.”

Borderless =No Citizens, and No Constitutional Rights that go with Citizenship

But a world without borders is a world without citizens, and a world without citizens is a world without the rights and privileges that attach exclusively to citizenship.

Rights and liberties exist only in separate and independent nations; they are the exclusive preserve of the nation-state.

Constitutional government only succeeds in the nation-state, where the just powers of government are derived from the consent of the governed.

globalismGlobalist Contrast—

EU is Not Constitutional; EU is an Administrative State under Unelected Bureaucrats

By contrast, to see the globalist principle in practice, look at the European Union. The EU is not a constitutional government; it is an administrative state ruled by unelected bureaucrats. It attempts to do away with both borders and citizens, and it replaces rights and liberty with welfare and regulation as the objects of its administrative rule. Constitutional government—to say nothing of liberal democracy—will not be a part of the politically correct, borderless world into which so many of our political leaders wish to usher us.

Why? Because Americans have Rejected the Laws of God

How did we reach such an impasse? The answer is simple, but no less astounding for its simplicity. It has been frequently observed by competent thinkers that Americans have abandoned the morality engendered by what the Declaration of Independence called the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”

Rights are not Subjective

quote-dec-independenceThe Declaration confidently proclaimed as its first principle the “self-evident” truth that “all men are created equal” and “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,” among them “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” As part of a created (and therefore intelligible) universe, rights cannot be something private or subjective; they are part of an objective order.

responsibilityRights have Responsibility

The idea that every right has a corresponding duty or obligation was essential to the social compact understanding of the American founding. Thus whatever was destructive of the public good or public happiness, however much it might have contributed to an individual’s private pleasures or imagined pleasures, was not a part of the “pursuit of happiness” and could be proscribed by society. Liberty was understood to be rational liberty, and the pursuit of happiness was understood to be the rational pursuit of happiness—that is to say, not only a natural right but a moral obligation as well.

Morality has been Eroded by Progressivism

moral-relativism-generalOver the past century and more, this morality grounded in the American founding has been successfully eroded by Progressivism. This erosion is manifested today in the morality of value-free relativism. According to this new morality, all value judgments are equal. Reason cannot prove that one value is superior to or more beneficial than another, because values are not capable of rational analysis; they are merely idiosyncratic preferences.

In this value-free universe, the only value that is “objectively” of higher rank is tolerance. Equal toleration of all values—what is called today a commitment to diversity—is the only “reasonable” position. And note that it is always called a commitment to diversity. It is a commitment because it cannot be rational in any strict sense—it exists in a value-free world from which reason has been expelled. The only support it can garner under such circumstances is the simple fact that it is preferred.

Sovereignty Sacrificed to Tolerance

With respect to the commitment to diversity, the tolerance of those who are willing to tolerate you does not earn you much credit—it doesn’t require much of a commitment or sacrifice. If, however, you are willing to tolerate those who are pledged to kill you and destroy your way of life, tolerance represents a genuine commitment. Only such a deadly commitment confirms that tolerance is the highest value in a universe of otherwise equal values. Only such a deadly commitment signals a nation’s single-minded devotion to tolerance as the highest value by its willingness to sacrifice its sovereignty as proof of its commitment.

Tolerating National Suicide but not Christians

multi-culturalism-quoteThe common-sense citizen is forgiven for thinking this train of thought insane. But what other explanation could there be for the insistence of so many of our political leaders on risking the nation’s security—in light of what we see in Europe, one might even say their willingness to commit national suicide—by admitting refugees without regard to their hostility to our way of life and their wish to destroy us as a nation?

Note that these leaders show no such enthusiasm for admitting Christian refugees from Middle Eastern violence, or even Yazidis, who have suffered horribly from the ravages of Islamic terror. These refugees, of course, represent no danger to America. Only by admitting those who do represent a danger can we display to the world “who we are as a people”—a people willing to sacrifice ourselves to vouchsafe our commitment to tolerance.

More Refugees→ Less Liberty

A rational concern for our liberties as well as for national security weighs in against such reckless policies. Security experts warn that we don’t have enough homeland security agents to monitor suspected terrorists who are already in our country.

If we increase the number of refugees from terrorist-supporting nations, greater security can only be provided by closer cooperation between the various security agencies and closer monitoring of the private lives of all Americans. The consequent loss of liberty will be extensive and will impact all areas of American life.

Bureaucratic Bullies

bureaucrats-2This, we are told, will become the “new reality” or the “new normal,” and Americans will have to develop a “new mind-set” to deal with it. Europeans are well on their way to accepting terrorism as a daily part of their lives—surely Americans, we are told, can adapt as well. But Europeans are used to sacrificing liberties to the administrative state represented by the EU.
Will Americans acquiesce so easily?

The administrative state has not yet extinguished America’s love of liberty, although it surely has made significant inroads over the years as Americans have become inured to being bullied by bureaucrats of all stripes. The constant monitoring of citizens in the name of detecting terrorism will, if allowed, turn the nation into a security state where liberties will be easily and casually sacrificed to the constant threat of terrorism. Sacrificing liberty will be the price Americans pay to accommodate refugees—in other words, it is the sacrifice we must make on the altar of political correctness.

Sacrificing Liberty to Political Correctness—Getting away with Terrorism in the name of “Freedom of Religion”

Remarkably, many politicians and pundits have argued that the First Amendment’s guarantee of free exercise of religion prohibits Congress and the president from banning the emigration of people to the U.S. based on religion. Thus they characterized the proposal to suspend the entry of Syrian refugees and others from terrorist-supporting nations as a violation of the Constitution.

Illegal Aliens not entitled to Constitutional Rights

constitution1But we must surely wonder how those who are not American citizens or legal resident aliens—indeed, even those who have never been present in the country—can assert rights under the Constitution. By the terms of the Constitution, free exercise of religion is one of the privileges and immunities attached to citizenship; it can hardly be said to be possessed by all those who seek refuge in, or wish to emigrate to, the United States.

As a sovereign nation, it is beyond dispute that the U.S. has plenary power to determine the conditions for immigration. Except in a borderless world, it can hardly be claimed that free exercise of religion is a right possessed by all persons inhabiting the globe or even those who are potentially asylum seekers.

For National Security Reasons, It Is Not Unconstitutional to Inquire Whether Asylum Seeker’s Beliefs Are Compatible with American Constitutional Order.

national-securityOne condition for claiming refugee status in the Refugee Act of 1980 is religious persecution. This necessarily means that any applicant for religious asylum would have to submit to questioning about his religious beliefs and (presumably) the sincerity of those beliefs. Also, it is not beyond reason that a sovereign nation would be allowed to inquire whether the religious beliefs of an asylum seeker are compatible with the American constitutional order.

Should asylum be extended to the adherents of religions that do not recognize the free exercise rights of other religions? [AS IN SHARIA LAW —which does not recognize freedom of other religions, and is diametrically opposed to the U.S. Constitution. ~C.D.]

Should those religions whose adherents refuse to pledge or give evidence that they would support free exercise be ineligible for asylum? Religion—and inquiry into religious belief—has always been part of the asylum law, and there is nothing in the Constitution that bars such inquiry on national security grounds.

Indeed, a quick glance at Article I of the Constitution reveals that Congress has plenary power to “establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization.” This has always been understood—by a necessary rule of inference—to mean that Congress also has plenary power to regulate immigration. Congress has wide latitude to choose the “necessary and proper” means to accomplish this end as long as it doesn’t violate some specific prohibition of the Constitution.

Only Political Correctness Is Unconstitutional

PC-criticizeTo sum up, only in the perfervid imaginations of the politically correct—those who reject the idea of borders—could the Syrian refugee controversy be confused with a constitutional controversy.

Obama’s Policy Goal Is to Administer a State in a Borderless World

Our lax policies toward illegal immigration and the virtual open-borders policy of the Obama administration represent an attempt to move toward a borderless world as well as to aggrandize the power of the administrative state.

Purpose of Immigration Act of 1965: to Make European Descendants a Minority. . .

It is now widely recognized that the Immigration Act of 1965 was intentionally designed to alter the racial and ethnic mix of the population of America. It has been an overwhelming success; demographers predict that by 2040 whites of European descent will no longer be a majority, having been displaced by people of Asian, African, Latin American, and Hispanic descent.

. . .providing a permanent, dependent underclass for Democrats to rule over . . .

RushCountryClassruling-classFor the most part—with the notable exception of Asians—these groups have supplied a significant clientele for the administrative state as it seeks to extend its reach and magnify its power. As such, it has redounded to the benefit of the Democratic Party—the party that favors the growth and extension of administrative state power.

. . .and a source of cheap labor for Republicans

But make no mistake: illegal immigration has always had bipartisan support. Despite the fact that illegal immigration cuts against them politically, Republicans have always favored the cheap and exploitable labor of illegal aliens.

The Democrats, of course, have gotten the best of this bargain. After three generations, Latinos vote Democratic by more than a two-thirds majority. The Republicans cannot hope to compete for the Latino vote without becoming something very close to the Democratic Party, differing only at the margins. This is something that the Republican establishment would like to do, but it finds little support among rank-and-file Republicans. If the Republicans lose the 2016 election—if a party realignment fails—the party as currently constituted will, in all likelihood, no longer be competitive in future national elections.

Open Borders Policy→ Terrorism, Drug and Human Trafficking, and Gang Violence

ImmigrationCriminalsPerhaps more importantly, America’s open-borders policy has allowed terrorists and criminals of all stripes to enter the country at will. In addition to Islamic terror groups, MS-13—a vicious Latin American gang involved in murder for hire, drug trafficking, human smuggling, slavery, and all other manner of crime—operates openly in the U.S.

Sanctuary Cities→ Tolerance for Crime

Even when illegal-alien criminals are deported, they easily return to commit further crimes. Surprisingly, this issue of illegal-alien crime has become an important issue in a presidential election for the first time this year. These criminals are aided and abetted by sanctuary cities—cities that refuse to cooperate with federal authorities in detaining illegal-alien criminals. This policy is the most baffling policy that can be imagined, as it results in criminals being deliberately released into the public where they continue to prey on innocent citizens. It is designed to show (what else?) our tolerance.

Stop the Self-Sacrifice to the gods of Political Correctness

border-wallSecuring our nation’s borders with a wall and by any other means necessary is favored by a majority of Americans, but the idea is considered vulgar and unacceptable by the progressive forces of History, forces which are clearing the obstacles to a borderless world. For these forces, the march of History is inevitable and any appeal to citizens and to the nation-state is anachronistic. It is not inevitable that these forces will have their way. But because of the demographic and political changes brought on by the open-borders regime, time grows short for the American people to reassert their sovereignty—that is, to stop the self-sacrifice which the political elites of both parties have determined is necessary to satisfy the gods of political correctness—those gods who are the guardians of the diversity which defines “who we are as a people.”

jefferson-quote-constitutionEdward J. Erler is professor emeritus of political science at California State University, San Bernardino. He earned his B.A. from San Jose State University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in government from the Claremont Graduate School. He has published numerous articles on constitutional topics in journals such as Interpretation, the Notre Dame Journal of Law, and the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy. He was a member of the California Advisory Commission on Civil Rights from 1988-2006 and served on the California Constitutional Revision Commission in 1996. He is the author of The American Polity and co‑author of The Founders on Citizenship and Immigration. This fall he is a visiting distinguished professor of politics at Hillsdale College.

Reprinted by permission of Hillsdale College

Christian News: Religious Freedom is Why Billy Graham’s Granddaughter is voting for Trump

Christian News:

Religious Freedom is Why Billy Graham’s Granddaughter is voting for Trump

A Graham explains why she’s voting for Trump

She’s the granddaughter of evangelist Billy Graham and the daughter of Franklin Graham – and she’s voting for Donald Trump.

key“Christians right now want to say they can’t vote for either candidate, [but] we can’t afford to sit out. This comes down to the Supreme Court and who’s going to protect my rights as a Christian and my religious freedoms.”

 

Cissie Graham Lynch says for her, it comes down to who sits on the Supreme Court – and that that’s why she says her brothers and sisters in Christ have to vote. “If there is only one reason for Christians to vote, this is it,” she writes. (Editor’s note: Well over half of 3,000 OneNewsNow readers who participated in a poll earlier this week agree, saying that vacancies on the Supreme Court will be foremost in their minds on Election Day.)

Following are excerpts from Lynch’s interview this morning on FOX News as well as a video of the program segment.

“Christians right now want to say they can’t vote for either candidate, [but] we can’t afford to sit out. This comes down to the Supreme Court and who’s going to protect my rights as a Christian and my religious freedoms.”

“This isn’t just an election for four to eight years – this is generational when it comes to the Supreme Court. Christians are being persecuted here; my faith is in Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ alone – and Christians are being persecuted every day. We need people who are going to stand firm for our religious beliefs, not attack the faith-based institutions; and who are going to fight for the unborn.”

“I look at who Trump has surrounded himself with. He has surrounded himself with some godly men [like] Ben Carson. But he’s chosen not just the counsel of Mike Pence but as his running mate. Mike Pence doesn’t just talk about his faith, he talks about his faith in Jesus Christ – and he is not ashamed of it. And I think Trump and Pence together will fight on behalf of the Christian voice.”

anti-hillary-pac-postcard“To listen to [Hillary Clinton] in those first five minutes [of the final debate] just candidly talk about [late-term] abortion. This is murder – and we are on a national stage just talking about it, [and she’s saying] that it’s okay and defending it. To me it was so vulgar.”

Similarly, Dr. Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Dallas says “staying at home” on Election Day isn’t an option for Christians – and like Cissie Graham Lynch, he cites the future makeup of the Supreme Court as a major reason.

 

A Graham explains why she’s voting for Trump

 

Election 2016 Alert: Religious Freedom in the Balance—Vote for America

Election 2016 Alert:

Pray for America

quote-fastingquote-chronicles7

Religious Freedom in the Balance—Vote for America

Alert to All Americans

See Also this National security Alert on Hillary’s treasonous connections :

Hillary’s ‘surrogate daughter’ tied to terrorists, 9/11 funders

Chilling video of Huma Abedin every American voter must see

 

Friends, Readers, and Fellow Americans:

afa-vote-carryweight                Since the purpose of this blog is to restore Judeo-Christian values, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of voting. This election is critical to the survival of our nation.

You may not feel totally confident about voting for Donald Trump. However, for the sake of our beloved country, we must keep all this in perspective. We must remember how Obama’s policies have brought us to the brink of destruction, and a term of Hillary would get us past the point of no return, for she would appoint immoral, anti-American Supreme Court justices who will be in there for 40 years!

Beware! This is what happens when Christians don’t vote!

anti-hillary-pac-postcard Christian Values at Stake; Vote for America, or lose  Religious Freedom

 

Defining moments of history: Worth considering is this pastor’s thought-provoking message—

Check out this post:

Churchill was far from politically correct, but he was the man for the times.

History Facts: Trump, Churchill, and Future of America

 

Know your History! Beware of the Trojan Horse!

 

Election 2016: Religious Freedom in the Balance—Vote for America

The Don’t Trust the”Fact Checkers”—They Are Really Opinion Journalists

 

culture-war7-truthRead more about testimonials from Christian Leaders:

Election 2016: Christian Leader urges Evangelicals to support Trump

Faith and Freedom Coalition— Judeo-Christian Culture at stake—Vote, make a difference

 

Whatever his faults, Donald Trump is not a criminal and a traitor like Hillary. Trump is better, even if you have to hold your nose to vote for him!

Then, if you don’t vote for Trump, your vote will default to the corrupt Hillary, and you will be accountable for the accelerated destruction of America, God’s covenant nation. You don’t want to be responsible for that, do you?

Election 2016: Christian Values at Stake; Vote for America, or lose Religious Freedom

Election 2016:

Christian Values at Stake; Vote for America, or lose  Religious Freedom

Think, pray, vote

Carolyn Reeves

war-on-christianityanti-hillary-pac-postcardNovember 2016 – American citizens espouse a variety of worldviews, the two major views being Judeo-Christian and secular humanism. Strangely, in recent years, the dominant culture-shaping forces have been from the minority views of secular humanism held by the leadership in fields such as entertainment, education, and often politics.

Humanists tend to have atheistic or agnostic religious beliefs and consider human reasoning and human solutions superior to biblical teachings and the laws of God. This has resulted in a number of secular laws and regulations legalizing such things as abortion, homosexual marriage, transgender “rights,” and required teaching in public schools that all life arose naturalistically.

When Christians fail to vote


GayPolitical-minoritiesChristians are often surprised when their beliefs are supplanted by ideas with which they strongly disagree.
In 2015, the conservative community of Charlotte, North Carolina, held city elections. According to Franklin Graham, 90% of the registered Christian voters in Charlotte failed to vote.

Subsequently, the city elected a mayor and a majority of aldermen who were activists for the LGBTQ lobby. One of their first orders of business was to pass a city ordinance requiring all businesses to allow men who believed their true gender was female to use all bathrooms, locker rooms, and dressing rooms of their choice. Women who believed their true gender was male were likewise permitted to use these spaces according to their perceived gender.

Biblical worldview losing impact


biblical-worldview2-christian
In recent years, Christians have seen the biblical worldview weakening as secular humanist worldviews have become stronger. Christians need first to recognize the conflicts between these worldviews.

Chapters 1-3 of Genesis establish some of the essentials of the Judeo-Christian worldview. God is proclaimed as the Creator of everything that exists, but today’s policies and laws have removed the terms God, design, and Creator not only from science books, but from schools in general. God’s design for the family – husband and wife; father and mother; parents and children; and male and female – are being redesigned by today’s social engineers.

Children in public schools are immersed in a secular worldview as Christian symbols and practices are being systematically eliminated: prayer before sporting events, Christian songs, Christmas and Easter events, and references to God even in personal essays.

Christian individuals, businesses, and churches are required to accept situations that violate their religious beliefs, such as attempts to force Christian religious organizations to pay for insurance that supplies abortion-causing drugs or to force private schools to allow transgender students to live in the dorm of their choice.

Being salt and light in the world

Jesus-bcome-disciple-lds-churchJesus told His disciples to be salt and light in the world. This can still be done as churches show the love, power, and truth of Christ to their local communities and abroad and pray earnestly for a God-breathed sweeping revival that would change hearts.

While national elections are very important, another critical way to bring salt and light into our local communities is to be sure that Christians are a part of local government and other policy-making bodies. Christians can affect the governing of their communities as they:

(1) Register to vote and exercise this right in every election.
(2) Consider joining or seeking an appointment to groups such as the library board; park
commission; parent/teacher groups; city, county, and school committees; political committees; and other decision-making groups.
(3) Write, call, or talk with officials about issues you consider important. As a Christian, always make your views known in a Christian manner.
(4) In every race where possible, support, campaign, pray, and vote for an honest, dependable candidate whose life, record, and commitment reflect Christian moral values.

Read an expanded version of this article at her website: undergroundparadigm.com.

Election 2016: Religious Liberty in the Balance—Vote for America

Election 2016:

Religious Liberty in the Balance—Vote for America

‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.’ ~Edmund Burke

Carry your civic weight

afa-vote-carryweightOctober 2016 – “Registering to vote and voting in the general election on November 8 is critically important,” said AFA president Tim Wildmon. “It is a constitutional privilege, and it is our moral responsibility, when possible, to elect God-fearing men and women.”

If you’re not registered to vote, there’s still time. Many state election laws allow for voter registration as late as 30 days – some even later – prior to the election. This is also important if you have recently moved because your voting precinct is tied to your current residence.

While most attention has been on the U.S. presidential race, there are also elections for local, state, and other federal level offices. Voter turnout is especially important this election because of an increasingly antagonistic spirit stemming from the presidential primaries, a reality that many leaders believe puts conservative candidates at greater risk.

Religious Liberty in the balance


obamatearing-constitution
Franklin Graham, during his Decision America Tour 2016, has repeatedly said, “I want to challenge Christians to boldly live out their faith and to pray for our nation and its leaders. I want to encourage Christians to get out and vote, and to cast their ballots for candidates who uphold biblical principles.”

America’s constitutional principles are literally hanging in the balance. One of those critical principles is religious liberty. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the fundamental right to religious liberty. Yet, the politically correct secular agenda is vigorously attempting to redefine the freedom of religious expression as worship only in the confines of a church building, but this limitation is unconstitutional.

judicialtyrannyRecent Supreme Court rulings have eliminated and eroded religious liberty related to marriage and sanctity of human life. The pendulum of state-sanctioned, religious discrimination is in full swing, returning toward the discriminatory times of early colonial days.

Line up at the polls
The next president will likely nominate at least three justices to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Arguably, these justices and other federally appointed judges will shape the judicial landscape for the next 40 years.

cyrus-of-bibleChristians need to exercise their religious liberty and influence civil government before it’s too late. Just as Nehemiah appealed to King Artaxerxes of Persia to restore the ruins of Jerusalem and the Temple (Ezra 7), so should people of influence today work with civic leaders to restore righteousness in our nation.

Such a restoration includes identifying and working with leaders who endorse biblical beliefs, values, and convictions – including religious liberty and the sanctity of human life. Could God use a non-believer to restore righteousness to a nation? Yes. King Artaxerxes was a non-believer.

 

Moral Solutions: Prayer, Religious Freedom vs. Atheism

Moral Solutions:

Prayer, Religious Freedom vs. Atheism

Texas AG OK’s Prayer in Court Over Atheist Group’s Objections

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has issued an opinion stating it does not violate the Establishment Clause to open a court session with the statement “God save the State of Texas and this Honorable Court” or to open court with a prayer, or have a volunteer chaplain program to facilitate those prayers. An atheist group from Wisconsin had complained about the practice.

freedom-of-religionThe Wisconsin-based Freedom from Religion Foundation filed a complaint with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct in mid-October of 2014 complaining that the practice was “blatantly unconstitutional.”

The issue arose when a justice of the peace in Montgomery County, Texas, Judge Wayne Mack, established a volunteer chaplain program. He invited “all religious leaders of any faith in [his county] to participate.”

Besides praying before court proceedings, other volunteer opportunities in the clergy chaplain program included the opportunity to provide comfort and counsel to individuals. The JP also serves as the coroner and is often a first responder where there is a death.

Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick and Seana Willing, Executive Director of the State Commission on Judicial Conduct (“Commission”) requested the attorney general opinion. As noted on the Office of Attorney General (OAG) website, the Texas Constitution, and the Texas Government Code grants the attorney general the authority to issue attorney general opinions. It is a non-binding legal opinion but is “a written interpretation of existing law.”

The Commission had “strongly cautioned the Justice of the Peace against this chaplain program and his current courtroom prayer practice.” The AG was asked to issue an opinion on the “constitutionality of those and similar practices.” The AG opinion, KP-0109,  stated that the analysis pinned on the Establishment Clause.

The Establishment Clause in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Citing case law, the attorney general opinion states that the Fourteenth Amendment imposes those limitations “on the legislative power of the States and their political subdivisions.”

gavel-american-flag-courtThe AG noted that “Both the United States Supreme Court and the Texas Supreme Court have longstanding practices of opening their sessions with [the] invocation” “God save the United States [or the ‘State of Texas’] and this Honorable Court.” The opinion states, “The Court has explained that the recitation of this type of phrase at the opening of court sessions is like legislative prayer in that it is ‘part of our heritage and tradition, [and] part of our expressive idiom.’”

Likewise, quoting case law, “‘The opening of sessions of legislative and other deliberative public bodies with prayer is deeply embedded in the history and tradition of this country.’” The United States Supreme Court has upheld the practice of opening a town board meeting with prayer, and religious leaders of any faith are invited to deliver a prayer at the proceedings. Moreover, the public is not required to participate in the prayers. The 2014 U.S. Supreme Court opinion of Town of Greece v. Galloway recited in the AG opinion said, “Even those who disagree as to religious doctrine may find common ground in the desire to show respect for the divine in all aspects of their lives and being. Our tradition assumes that adult citizens, firm in their own beliefs, can tolerate and perhaps appreciate a ceremonial prayer delivered by a person of a different faith.”

The Attorney General addressed the question raised by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct whether or not it was proper for courts, unlike legislative and town bodies, to engage in the practice. The nation’s highest court found that “legislative bodies do not engage in impermissible coercion by exposing constituents to prayer they would rather not hear and in which they need not participate.” The AG quoted the Court and analyzed that the Supreme Court would “likely apply the same analysis to courtroom prayer to open proceedings.”

The volunteer chaplain program makes clergy available “upon request” to “provide counsel to persons in distress.” The opinion reasons that this is similar to the hiring of chaplains in county hospitals, prisons, and military establishments, but notes that those individuals are even paid with public funds. In Montgomery County, members of the clergy are volunteers. Although there is no case law directly on point that involves a volunteer clergy program he notes, the AG reasons that the practice would be upheld as constitutional upon challenge.

In a statement obtained by Breitbart Texas, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick said “In response to my request [for an attorney general opinion], General Paxton issued an opinion affirming the constitutionality of these programs. This is a sure victory for religious liberty in Texas.” He added, “This opinion goes a long way in providing the necessary clarity to Judge Mack, and judges throughout Texas, of constitutionally appropriate court room prayer and volunteer-led chaplaincy programs. As Lt. Governor, I will continue to fight for religious liberty across the state.”

 

Texas AG Okays Prayer in Court, Atheists Whine