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The Gods of Liberalism Revisited

 

The lie hasn't changed, and we still fall for it as easily as ever.  But how can we escape the snare?

 

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Queer Twist That Real Things Have

American Minute from William J. Federer

His death went unnoticed, as he died the same day John F. Kennedy was shot, but his works are some of the most widely read in English literature.

Originally an agnostic, he served in World War I and became a professor at Oxford and Cambridge.

He credits his Catholic friend and fellow writer, J.R.R. Tolkien, author of "Lord of the Rings," as being instrumental in bringing him to faith in Christ.

Among his most notable books are: The Screwtape Letters; Miracles; The Problem of Pain; Abolition of Man; and The Chronicles of Narnia, which include The Lion, Witch and Wardrobe.

His name was C.S. Lewis, born NOVEMBER 29, 1898.

Over 200 million copies of his books have sold worldwide and, 40 years after his death, continue to sell a million copies a year.

In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis wrote: "All that we call human history - money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery - is the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy."

C.S. Lewis wrote: "Christianity...is a religion you could not have guessed...It is not the sort of thing anyone would have made up. It has just that queer twist about it that real things have."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


GOP needs return to limited government agenda

BY STAR PARKER
FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
COALITION ON URBAN RENEWAL & EDUCATION

Now that Democrats have won the White House and have widened their margin of control in Congress, does this signify that American voters have moved to the left?

Many Republicans question this claim. And a new report from the Pew Research Center seems to verify that America is still a right of center as a country. But the picture gets murky when you look at the details. And this murkiness presents a considerable challenge for Republicans who are trying to figure out where to steer their party.

According to the just published report, more Americans today call themselves conservative than liberal, and the relative percentages in each category has hardly changed since George W. Bush was elected to his first term in 2000.

Thirty eight percent of Americans self-identify as conservative, 21 percent as liberal, and 36 percent as moderate. This compares to 36 percent, 18 percent and 38 percent, respectively, in 2000.

But taking a closer look at what this means leaves you scratching your head. You have to wonder what it means today to think of yourself as conservative.

When asked if the Bush tax cuts should be made permanent, only 38 percent of those who said they are "conservative" said yes. And 50 percent of "conservatives" said they favor government guaranteeing health care "even if it means raising taxes."

Although 71 percent of "conservatives" said they oppose gay marriage, only slightly more than half, 52 percent, said that abortion should be illegal.

Many Republicans point to the fact that traditional marriage initiatives won in all three states where they were on the ballot -- California, Florida, and Arizona -- as evidence for the conservatism of the country. But pro-life initiatives lost in all three states where they were on ballots -- California, South Dakota, and Colorado.

What can be the message here for those vying for leadership of the Republican Party?

Some argue that the party should lighten up on the social agenda. The party is all white, they say, and there is no future without Latinos and blacks.

But consider the obvious. First, conservatives define the Republican Party. According to this study, 68 percent of Republicans call themselves conservative.

Second, it should be obvious from the above, that if conservatives are rooted anywhere, it's more in the social agenda than in the fiscal and limited government agenda. Where in the world would the party be if the leadership tried to uproot from social conservatism?

Third, consider what is going on with blacks and Latinos.

In this same Pew survey, 25 percent of all Democrats called themselves conservatives. But among these same Democrats, 35 percent of blacks call themselves conservative compared to 21 percent of whites.

Why? Blacks are social conservatives. Blacks understand the havoc that moral relativism has caused in their communities. And, this is also the case with Latinos.

As was widely reported, blacks and Latinos voted for Proposition 8 in California, supporting traditional marriage, despite the majority of them also voting for President-elect Barack Obama.

So where is the logic in Republicans abandoning social conservatism in order to reach blacks and Latinos?

It appears that the message getting lost is the importance of limited government and fiscal conservatism.

Health care is almost 20 percent of our national economy. Too many are not getting what it will mean when bureaucrats will define what health care is and when the IRS comes knocking to check on the policy you bought. Too many seem to have forgotten that prosperity is created by individual freedom and creativity and not government programs.

These are tough times and families are under duress. Perhaps it's tempting to think that opening the door to more government is a good idea. Particularly in an environment where every day another half trillion-dollar check is being cut in Washington for bailout programs.

When most Americans say they are conservative, they mean it. Too many, however, are forgetting that this means limited government as well as traditional values. We need new, energetic Republican leaders to get this message across.

Star Parker is president of the Coalition on Urban Renewal & Education and author of the new book White Ghetto: How Middle Class America Reflects Inner City Decay.

Prior to her involvement in social activism, Star Parker was a single welfare mother in Los Angeles, California. After receiving Christ, Star returned to college, received a BS degree in marketing and launched an urban Christian magazine. The 1992 Los Angeles riots destroyed her business, yet served as a springboard for her focus on faith and market-based alternatives to empower the lives of the poor.


Friday, November 28, 2008

Study Finds Significant Link Between Abortion, Mental Health Problems

A few months ago the American Psychological Association (APA) released a report claiming abortion was not detrimental to women's mental health.

Many professionals and women who have had abortions found this claim incredible. A group of 100 scientists, medical and mental health experts released a statement strongly disagreeing with this conclusion which has been roundly refuted by the testimony of many post-abortive women.

An APA member and insider, Dr. Rachel M. MacNair, went on record stating this finding was politically motivated and based on very shallow research.

A new report was just released today and published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research. The study was headed by Dr. Priscilla Coleman, a professor of Human Development and Family Studies at Bowling Green State University, along with Catherine Coyle of Edgewood College, researcher Martha Shuping and psychologist Dr. Vincent Rue.

As LifeNews reports, the results were pretty startling:

The researchers found women who had abortions, compared with those who didn't had a 120% risk for alcohol abuse, with or without dependence, a 145% increased risk of alcohol dependence, 79% increased risk of drug abuse with or without dependence and a 126% increase in the risk of drug dependence.

For mood disorders, the experience of an abortion increased risk of developing bipolar disorder by 167%, major depression without hierarchy by 45% and major depression with hierarchy by 48%.

For anxiety disorders, there was a 111% increased risk for panic disorders, 44% increased risk for panic attacks, 59% increased risk for PTSD, 95% increased risk for agoraphobia with or without panic disorder and a 93% increased risk for agoraphobia without panic disorder.

Overall, mental health problems rose 17 percent in post-abortive women compared to women who haven't had an abortion. The LifeNews article also says the risks of each particular mental health problem rose as high as 145% for post-abortive women.

Unfortunately many "professionals" expect average people in the public to kneel in worship at the altar of their degrees and other credentials, but findings such as the one released by the APA a few months ago simply don't pass the smell test--even for ordinary people.

When professional organizations make what are obviously politically motivated statements, they not only put people at risk, they also squander their own credibility.

With the number of propaganda pronouncements coming from the medical community in the past few decades, it won't be long before their "professional" opinion is totally worthless.


Prevailing Sins of the Day

American Minute from William J. Federer

Following the hated Stamp Act of 1765, the British committed the Boston Massacre in 1770, firing into a crowd, killing five.

Colonists responded with the Boston Tea Party in 1773.

The British then blocked Boston Harbor in 1774 to starve the city into submission.

The President of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress was James Warren, husband of Revolutionary War author Mercy Otis Warren. James Warren proposed Sam Adams form Committees of Correspondence to inform the nation of injustices committed in Boston.

President James Warren, who died NOVEMBER 28, 1808, approved the Massachusetts Resolution: "In Provincial Congress, Watertown, June 16, 1775 - As it has pleased Almighty God in his Providence to suffer the calamities of an unnatural war to take place among us...the most effectual way to escape those desolating judgments...will be that we repent."

The Resolution continued: "Among the prevailing sins of this day, which threaten the destruction of this land, we have reason to lament the frequent prophanation of the Lord's Day, or Christian Sabbath...It be recommended by this Congress, to the people...that they...pay a religious regard to that day, and to the public Worship of God thereon."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Blowing the Horn of Plenty


From our friends at Americans for Limited Government.


Lessons from the Pilgrims for 21st Century America

Thanksgiving is a great day for the retelling of the abysmal failure of the notion that would be popularized by Karl Marx.

We usually think of Marxism and its slightly more benevolent brother socialism as being relatively new, and that is true on a world scale. But the idea that human nature can be denied and Utopian sentiments will lead everyone to gleefully share their resources--no matter how hard or how little they have worked for their share--has been around a long time.

The Roman Empire flirted with it, and it contributed to their decline.

But some Americans flirted with socialism long before Karl Marx was ever born. And like everyone who has tried it and had the intellectual honesty to give it an objective appraisal, they found it to be the usual pathetic failure.

Joseph Farah at WorldNetDaily tells of how the Pilgrims played with socialism... and it almost cost them their lives.

To say that social experiment was a total failure would be an understatement. The first winter spelled death and disease and hunger for the colony because the Pilgrims had arrived too late in the season to plant crops and build adequate shelters. Half of them died. The following spring, however, they planted and hunted and fished to get by – just barely. They did invite some of the friendly Indians to join them in their first "Thanksgiving" celebration. But they were not thanking the Indians. They were thanking God for pulling them through.

As William Bradford wrote in his journal: "And thus they found the Lord to be with them in all their ways, and to bless their outgoings and incomings, for which let His holy name have the praise forever, to all posterity."

Nevertheless, Bradford remained troubled by the colony's inability to prosper. He found the answer by studying the Bible and revisiting the notion of private property and incentized hard work.

He wrote about it in 1623: "So they began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop than they had done, that they might not still thus languish in misery. At length, after much debate of things, the Governor (with the advice of the chiefest amongst them) gave way that they should set corn every man for his own particular, and in that regard trust to themselves. ... This had very good success, for it made all hands very industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been by any means the Governor or any other could use, and saved him a great deal of trouble, and gave far better content. The women now went willingly into the field, and took their little ones with them to set corn, which before would allege weakness and inability, whom to have compelled would have been thought great tyranny and oppression. The experience that was had in this common course and condition, tried sundry years and that amongst Godly and sober men, may well evince the vanity of that conceit of Plato's and other ancients applauded by some of later times, that the taking away of property and bringing in community into a commonwealth would make them happy and flourishing, as if they were wiser than God. For this community was found to breed much confusion and discontent and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit and comfort. For the young men, that were most able and fit for labour and service, did repine that they should spend their time and strength to work for other men's wives and children without any recompense. The strong, or man of parts, had no more in division of victuals and clothes than he that was weak and not able to do a quarter the other could, this was thought injustice. … And for men's wives to be commanded to do service for other men, as dressing their meat, washing their clothes, etc., they deemed it a kind of slavery, neither could many husbands brook it. Upon the point all being to have alike, and all to do alike, they thought themselves in the like condition, and one as good as another; and so, if it did not cut off those relations that God hath set amongst men, yet it did at least diminish and take off the mutual respects that should be preserved amongst them."

In other words, the introduction of the idea of private property saved the Pilgrims – made their experiment successful.

America obviously needs to read and heed this lesson, and it needs the lesson BADLY, since just earlier this month we elected a transparently socialist president.

Despite the idealistic notions of Marxists, socialists and liberals, human nature does not change and has never changed since the Garden of Eden.

Socialism never works better, either. While throwing more money at it can stave off the inevitable results, those end results remain inevitable for the civilization that doggedly insists on riding that horse to the bitter end--over a cliff of disappointment, decay and destruction.

It's not too late to turn around, America. Let's return to our historic roots of freedom, personal responsibility and limited government before it's too late to stop the horse.


Thanksgiving Overseas for the Troops

Having spent several Thanksgivings overseas, I can attest that spending the holidays in a foreign land--especially being away from family--can be a bit lonely.

As we celebrate Thanksgiving today, please say a prayer of thanksgiving for our troops fighting to keep us free and safe, and a prayer for their safety and their spirits.


A Thanksgiving Greeting From 17th Century Plymouth, England


Balfour Beginnings

American Minute from William J. Federer

During World War I, Britain was ineffective manufacturing explosives, until a breakthrough in synthesizing acetone was made by Jewish chemist Dr. Chaim Weizmann, who was born NOVEMBER 27, 1874.

In gratitude, Britain issued the Balfour Declaration, establishing a Jewish homeland.

President Woodrow Wilson wrote to Rabbi Stephen Wise, 1918: "I think all Americans will be deeply moved by the report that...the Weizmann commission has been able to lay the foundation of the Hebrew University at Jerusalem."

President Harry S Truman wrote to Dr. Weizmann, November 29, 1948: "I remember well our conversations about the Negeb...I agree fully with your estimate of the importance of the area to Israel, and I deplore any attempt to take it away from Israel. I had thought that my position would have been clear to all the world, particularly in the light of the specific wording of the Democratic Party platform."

Truman continued: "I have interpreted my re-election as a mandate...to carry out...the plank on Israel...In closing, I want to tell you how happy and impressed I have been at the remarkable progress made by the new State of Israel."

Dr. Weizmann wrote: "I think that the God of Israel is with us."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

America's Christian Heritage: Mayflower Compact

On the eve of Thanksgiving, (unless we loathe our heritage) we traditionally remember the day of thanksgiving of the Pilgrims for the food they had and their survival in the New World.

This video revisits the founding document written by the Pilgrims who came to America on the Mayflower.

Hint: if you're thinking of taking the Dakota Voice poll in the upper right side of the blog, the answers are in this video.


Contempt for the Constitution

Doesn't this really sum up the contempt the Left has for the United States Constitution?

The Pittsburgh City Council just passed a firearms restriction requiring that anyone report a lost or stolen firearm report that within 24 hours or potentially face a $500 fine.

When opponents questioned the constitutionality of the law, Democrat Councilwoman Tonya Payne dismissed such concerns:

"Who really cares about it being unconstitutional?"

Everyone should care whether our laws are constitutional.

Because if they are not, it's likely they rob us of our freedom and independence.

But most importantly, because if it isn't constitutional, it isn't legal. The U.S Constitution is the highest law of our land; it is the measuring stick by which all other laws are measured...and if they do not measure up, they cannot stand.

Too often liberals take the attitude of this woman when they push their pieces of Marxist drivel they want to make law.

Constitution and freedom be damned! We've got a socialist Utopia to build!

Hang onto the Constitution with all your strength, Americans. It is the primary defender of your freedom, and your key bulwark against oppression.

And don't let liberals like this get away with such oath-violating contempt for our Constitution.


The First National Thanksgiving Proclamation

American Minute from William J. Federer

In order to thank God for the First Amendment, which was passed a week earlier by Congress, President George Washington issued the first National Thanksgiving Proclamation, 1789: "Whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me 'to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness;'"

Washington continued: "Now, therefore, I do recommend...Thursday, the 26TH DAY of NOVEMBER...to be devoted by the People of these United States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be;"

Washington concluded: "That we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks...for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government...particularly the national one now lately instituted, for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed...to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Pro-Life Ads Coming to MTV

With the large amount of time people--especially young people--spend watching television, if you want to reach the culture, that's where to go.

So it is that Virtue Media is headed into one of the central arenas where young people are found to bring the message of life: MTV.

In small markets where they've run ads before, they've seen significant reductions in abortion rates.

A large ad campaign at MTV is sure to get young people exposed to information they'll likely never hear about from the "mainstream" media. And maybe some lives will be saved because of it.

I was pro-abortion until about 15 years ago. I was pro-abortion because I hadn't considered anything deeper than the meaningless pap the "mainstream" media calls "information." I was pro-abortion, but unlike some pro-abortionists, I was open to the truth. When I took the time to go find the facts on my own...it wasn't long before I realized I'd been on the wrong side of the life issue.

Maybe there are some young people like me that this campaign will reach.

Virtue Media is encouraging young Americans to choose life.


Liberal Myopia on Parade in History

There are certain things you can see coming from a mile away, and (ironically) liberal myopia is definitely one of them.

So it was this morning as I published today's "American Minute" by historian William Federer. The piece highlighted Sojourner Truth's Christian faith and her inspired work in the abolitionist movement.

Realizing how liberals have hijacked every civil rights figure possible and distort them to further their demonization of America and Christianity, I was virtually certain that liberal drool would come dripping out from some corner of the Left in response. And I was not mistaken.

Because she felt I and her readers needed a history lesson, in response Anna at DakotaWomen posted a speech by Sojourner Truth which is often cited by feminists.

Anna says she has "a feeling Sojourner wouldn't be allowed into some of the higher-profile fundamentalist churches in South Dakota were she living today and making speeches like that."

Really? I wonder which "higher-profile fundamentalist churches" she means, and why she believes that.

Interestingly, the version of Sojourner Truth's speech published by Marcus Robinson about a month after it was given is significantly different than the version published some 12 years later and quoted by DakotaWomen.

The version published by Robinson was a little more Christ-centered (acknowledging that Jesus "never spurned woman from him") and a little less useful for fueling feminist loathing for Christianity, so you'll have to decide which is more likely to be accurate and in harmony with the Christian faith expressed by Sojourner Truth in today's American Minute.

Its interesting, too, that the issue with which Sojourner Truth is most closely identified--the abolition of slavery--bears striking similarities with the most pressing civil rights issue of today: abortion.

You see, some people in the 1800s felt black people weren't really human, and as such didn't deserve human rights and full protection under the law.

Some people today feel that unborn children still inside their mother's wombs aren't human either and consequently don't deserve civil rights and equal protection under the law.

They manage to believe this despite the fact that these children--different from other children only in development--have human DNA, unique human DNA that makes them separate and distinct from their mother (in other words, not a part of the woman's body), with all the genetic material they'll ever need for the rest of their life already present.

As you can see, the discrimination based on skin color of the 1800s was no more scientific and fact-based than is today's discrimination based on developmental level.

And as the ironies mount, we see that the fringe element within Christendom who in the 1800s attempted to justify their denial of humanity did so then in defiance of the plain teaching of Scripture, just as a fringe element does today.

A further irony is that many of those who perpetuate this denial of human rights are women, and since abortion is decimating the next generation of black children at a higher rate than any other ethnicity, it is perhaps most ironic that this denial of human rights is most acute in the black community.

It seems so hard for humans to learn from history, doesn't it? Thankfully, as genuine Christianity has promoted human dignity for women and black Americans, so Christianity will continue to promote the dignity and worth of the most innocent and vulnerable human beings in society.

On a final note, notice that while the storm troopers of myopia over at DakotaWomen might be afraid to link to a "truth site" (they consider the truth about liberal errors to be "hate") I've experienced no anxiety in linking to them. Perhaps I'm just more tolerant that the apostles of tolerance at DakotaWomen.


Child Welfare Takes Back Seat to Judicial Activism

Arkansas recently passed a measure prohibiting unmarried adoptions by a healthy margin: 56.9%. The measured banned adoptions by both homosexual couples and unmarried heterosexual couples. The measure is a good step in placing the well-being of children ahead of the selfishness of grownups who don't know how to act grown-up (i.e. put the needs of others--specifically children--ahead of themselves).

Florida, on the other hand, is taking a step backwards. Their Supreme Court wants to reward those who even refuse to engage in natural sex with custody of developing, impressionable children.

Judicial activism has once again put the self-centered desires of homosexual activists ahead of the welfare of children, with the activist court finding "There is no rational basis to prohibit gay parents from adopting."

Homosexuals have much higher rates of AIDS, other STDs, hepatitis, anal cancer, depression, substance abuse, suicide, domestic violence and promiscuity--even among homosexual couples who make the claim of "monogamy." Such environments are not suitable for children.

What's more, placing a child in a homosexual home automatically deprives the child of either a mother or a father. Children need both a mother and father to have a good chance of growing up health and well-adjusted. Homosexual homes by default rob them of this. It also sends the detrimental message to the child that one or the other sex is unnecessary or undesirable.

The needs of children and the priority placed on their healthy upbringing and development used to come first. Today's demented society, however, places politically correct affirmation of adults ahead of the child's needs.

In addition to protecting human life, protecting children is one of the most important duties of any government. No other segment of society is more vulnerable to multiple avenues of harm, and no other segment of society is less able to defend themselves from harm.

Such hostility toward healthy families and toward children--especially on the part of the government charged with their protection--is reprehensible.


Politician Likes Thanksgiving Stuffing


From our friends at Americans for Limited Government.


Life Prizes Announces $600,000 Pro-Life Award Winners

Inaugural Year of the Gerard Health Foundation Honor Awards Pro-Life Movement’s Greatest Heroes

Natick, MA – The Gerard Health Foundation is pleased to announce the winners of its inaugural Life Prizes award, granted to six individuals or groups that have made unsurpassed strides in preserving and upholding the sanctity of human life. These winners have demonstrated their leadership and progress in pro-life achievements through public advocacy, scientific research, legal action, outreach and public discourse activities.

The first award of its kind, Life Prizes is overseen by Executive Director Cathy Ruse who worked in conjunction with members of the Selection Advisory Committee to evaluate the more than 100 nominations submitted to the Foundation and select the recipient winners of the $600,000 in shared prize money. The four advisors comprising the Selection Advisory Committee have helped advance pro-life principles and practices in their advocacy and include Archbishop of Denver Charles Chaput, the Reverend Dr. Alveda King, Ambassador Ray Flynn and Professor Hadley Arkes of Amherst College.

“We were impressed by the exceptional caliber of all those nominated for the initial year of Life Prizes, and reminded of the heroism, sacrifice, and valor in the efforts of leaders from across the country,” stated Cathy Ruse. “The six winners that were chosen are examples for us and for our children of the type of initiative and action that is needed to promote life throughout our country. We are thrilled with the work they have been doing and are excited to see how that work will continue.”

The $600,000 in prize money will be divided among the following six winners:

- American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) – Association of pro-life physicians that saves lives by remaining steadfastly committed to life within a stridently pro-abortion profession and which conducts research, writing, and public advocacy especially on the negative impact of abortion on women.

- Richard Doerflinger – Associate Director of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, bioethics expert, consummate researcher, and has been involved in almost every major pro-life legislative initiative since 1980. He has contributed behind the scenes to all major pro-life statements from the Catholic bishops during the last quarter century.

- Margaret “Peggy” Hartshorn – President, Heartbeat International, a preeminent network of more than 1,000 pregnancy resource centers spread throughout the world that has directly saved the lives of innumerable unborn children and their mothers from abortion through vital pregnancy support.

- Jill Stanek – Nurse who first publicly exposed infanticide of abortion survivors, Born-Alive Infant Protection Act proponent and chief witness, and prolific writer who uses the media and her popular blog to continue revealing the truth about late-term abortion.

- Lila Rose – Founder of student pro-life organization Live Action and President of its UCLA chapter. She has launched several successful, undercover investigations that exposed the racism and statutory rape cover-up by Planned Parenthood.

- Kay Coles James – Founder and President of The Gloucester Institute, an outreach and education initiative for young African Americans focused on developing solutions for the challenges facing communities today, utilizing lessons learned from the civil rights movement, including a recognition that the first civil right is life itself.She and her husband, Charles James, have worked to advance the pro-life cause for three decades as advocates in the highest levels of government, including the Reagan and both Bush presidential administrations and as founders of a pregnancy resource center and Black Americans for Life.

“The accomplishments of these pro-life heroes are diverse, valiant, and nothing short of inspiring,” stated Raymond Ruddy, President of the Gerard Health Foundation. “They are the movement’s most successful champions of life and their achievements will inspire future pro-life generations to be bold and brilliant in undertaking the many challenges that lie ahead in spreading a culture of life.”

After the initial nomination process made on behalf of more than 100 esteemed nominators, the Life Prizes’ Selection Advisory Committee assisted the Gerard Health Foundation in the difficult job of narrowing the finalists down to secure the six prominent recipients. The awards will be given at an invitation-only ceremony held at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC on January 23, 2009.


The Faith of a Former Slave

American Minute from William J. Federer

Born a slave in New York in 1797, she spoke only Dutch until she was sold at age 11. Suffering hardships, her third master made her marry an older slave with whom she had five children.

In 1827, she escaped to Canada. After New York abolished slavery, she returned as a domestic servant and helped with Elijah Pierson's street-corner preaching. Her name was Sojourner Truth.

In 1843, Sojourner Truth heard "a voice from Heaven" and began spreading "God's truth and plan for salvation." In Massachusetts, she worked with abolitionists William Lloyd Garrison and Frederick Douglass.

After the Emancipation Proclamation, Sojourner Truth moved to Washington, D.C., met Lincoln and helped former slaves.

In 1850, she dictated her biography, The Narrative of Sojourner Truth: A Northern Slave, stating: "When I left the house of bondage I left everything behind. I wanted to keep nothing of Egypt on me, and so I went to the Lord and asked him to give me a new name."

Sojourner Truth continued: "I set up my banner, and then I sing, and then folks always comes up 'round me, and then...I tells them about Jesus."

Her last full day on earth, NOVEMBER 25, 1883, Sojourner Truth would begin her messages: "Children, I talk to God and God talks to me."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Monday, November 24, 2008

Obama Likely to Gut Pro-Life Policies

Among the executive orders President Barack Obama is likely to sign upon inauguration:

- Repeal EO preventing foreign aid from going to pro-abortion groups

- Remove restrictions on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research (there is NO reason to fund human-life-destroying embryonic stem cell research when adult stem cell research has already produced around 80 successful therapies)

The president-elect's transition team says the Democrat will sign several executive orders Jan. 20. Life advocates fear the outcome.



What is the Amethyst Initiative?

From the Amethyst Initiative website:

Launched in July 2008, the Amethyst Initiative is made up of chancellors and presidents of universities and colleges across the United States. These higher education leaders have signed their names to a public statement that the problem of irresponsible drinking by young people continues despite the minimum legal drinking age of 21, and there is a culture of dangerous binge drinking on many campuses.

The Amethyst Initiative supports informed and unimpeded debate on the 21 year-old drinking age. Amethyst Initiative presidents and chancellors call upon elected officials to weigh all the consequences of current alcohol policies and to invite new ideas on how best to prepare young adults to make responsible decisions about alcohol use.


The Amethyst Initiative's claim that they do not specifically endorse lowering of the drinking age is disingenuous. Would they have us believe that their efforts only encourage discussion of the issue and that they have no a priori position? The fact that they sarcastically announce on their website that they are the recipients of the first annual WCTU (Women’s Christian Temperance Union) “Millstone Award” for activities that “promote unhealthy, illegal, or immoral behavior” says much about who and what they are.

The Amethyst Initiative was founded of John McCardell, President Emeritus of Middlebury College, and claims to advocate a fresh look at the abuse of alcohol by college students. Specifically, “binge drinking” is a major concern in colleges and universities across America from the elite Ivy League intitutions to small community colleges. The rate of binge drinking, defined as five or more drinks for men and four or more for women has remained steady since the 1990s, but the intensity has increased with many students exceeding the definition three and four times over.

College and university administrators are seemingly powerless to control this rise in drug and alcohol abuse. Enforcement could drive students away and gain the institution the reputation of being strict and unfriendly to students and could result in lowered admissions and loss of revenue.

The Amethyst Initiative is nothing more than a group of university presidents and chancellors who wish to relieve themselves of the responsibility of controlling alcohol use on their campuses. If the drinking age is lowered to 18, as they propose (and they certainly do), and students end up in emergency rooms and morgues because of alcohol abuse they can then issue statements expressing their sincere regrets but adding “what can we do, they are after all of legal drinking age.”

A 2007 story in USA Today reported on a study by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University.

Nearly half of America's 5.4 million full-time college students abuse drugs or drink alcohol on binges at least once a month, according to a new study that portrays substance and alcohol abuse as an increasingly urgent problem on campuses across the nation.

Alcohol remains the favored substance of abuse on college campuses by far, but the abuse of prescription drugs and marijuana has increased dramatically since the mid-1990s, according to the study released today by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University.

CASA, which called on educators to move more aggressively to counter intensifying drug and alcohol use among students, first studied students' drug and alcohol habits in 1993. Today's report — the center's second on the subject — involved a survey of 2,000 student and 400 administrators as well as analyses of six national studies.
The center found that ‘the situation on America's campuses has deteriorated’since 1993, CASA President Joseph Califano said.

The study found that college students have higher rates of alcohol or drug addiction than the general public: 22.9% of students meet the medical definition for alcohol or drug abuse or dependence — a compulsive use of a substance despite negative consequences — compared with 8.5% of all people 12 and older.

School administrators have not done enough to curtail drug and alcohol abuse on campus, Califano says. In CASA's survey of administrators, two-thirds said responsibility for stopping drug abuse rests with students.

'It's not on the radar screen of college presidents. This is not a priority,' Califano says. 'We believe they have an obligation to protect the health and safety of their students.'


The goal of the Amethyst Initiative is to relieve college and university administrators of that obligation. One has to wonder what will be the cost in students’ health and lives if there is no one to look out for their well-being when they are away from home, immature and subject to untoward influences?

See related Editorial in the New York Times.


A Look at the Harsh Reality of Abortion

The abortion debate often ends in a stalemate of a woman's right to choose vs. the right of a baby to life. The procedure that ends the life an unborn baby remains abstract for most people, but to truly understand the argument of those of us opposed to this gruesome practice I decided to post this Youtube video. As a physician who has witnessed this procedure first-hand while in med school I can attest that the depictions shown here are typical and are not unusual occurrences.

This video contains very graphic images that I hope most viewers will find very disturbing. Be forewarned.

With the election of Barrack Obama it is unlikely we'll see an end to this abom- ination anytime soon, but let us pray that hearts will be moved and our country will recognise the evil that has produced the deaths of over 40 million innocent lives.


Giving Thanks

By S. Michael Craven
Center for Christ & Culture


As we once again approach this national day of thanksgiving, I thought it necessary to reflect upon our nation's long history of acknowledging and giving thanks to Almighty God.

On October 3, 1789, George Washington issued the nation's first presidential proclamation in which he called the nation to set aside a day for giving thanks to that "great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be ..."

President Washington gave under his official hand the following words:

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor ...

Furthermore, President Washington acknowledged that he was joined by the Congress in his appeal to the nation:
Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me to "recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness"... that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us. (Emphasis mine.)

This presidential proclamation represented, in unequivocal terms, the government's call upon the people of this nation to acknowledge and give thanks to God for His many and abundant blessings. These were not benign religious platitudes but absolute statements reflecting the consensus view of life and reality, which acknowledged that there is one God; the God who has revealed Himself in Scripture, in nature, and in the person of Jesus Christ. It is this God that the nation once acknowledged and it is this God, the one true God, that the people of this nation have turned against and today refuse to acknowledge and serve.

President Washington concluded his proclamation with these words:
And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Seventy-four years later, in the midst of the great Civil War, President Lincoln would issue a similar call to the nation acknowledging the nation's many blessings from the Lord, "... who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy." President Lincoln, like our first president, would once again call the nation to national thanksgiving and repentance with these words:
And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience ... and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.

America, in its folly, has been in the process of severing its national identity and dependence from the God who has given it birth and blessed it for so long. Therefore, it seems to me that we might be well served to recall the proclamation of these great men set aside for this Thanksgiving holiday and once again give thanks to Almighty God for His longsuffering patience and mercy toward this nation and humbly repent of our national rebellion and wanton disregard for all that is holy and just.

This national repentance begins in the church, which has seemingly lost its way—abandoned (practically speaking) its first love and so often conformed to the world. May we on this Thanksgiving Day acknowledge the many and abundant blessings of Almighty God accompanied by a deep and sorrowful repentance for our individual, corporate, and national sins. This, my dear brothers and sisters, is our only hope and it is for this real hope and the promise of forgiveness that we can give thanks indeed!

May the Lord, in His great mercy, pour out His spirit upon you, your families, His church, and this nation this Thanksgiving Day.


S. Michael Craven is the President of the Center for Christ & Culture. Michael is the author of Uncompromised Faith (Navpress).The Center for Christ & Culture is dedicated to renewal within the Church and works to equip Christians with an intelligent and thoroughly Christian approach to matters of culture in order to demonstrate the relevance of Christianity to all of life. For more information on the Center for Christ & Culture, the teaching ministry of S. Michael Craven, visit:
http://www.crosswalk.com/blogs/mCraven/www.battlefortruth.org


Profligate Morality?

American Minute from William J. Federer

Sentenced as a galley slave on a French ship, he looked up as they sailed passed St. Andrews, Scotland, and said: "I see the steeple of that place where God first in public opened my mouth to glory; and I am fully persuaded...I shall not depart this life till my tongue shall glorify his godly name in the same place."

John Knox was eventually released, met John Calvin, and returned to Scotland, where he confronted Mary, Queen of Scots, mother of England's King James I.

In 1560, John Knox led Scotland to establish the Presbyterian Church.

Dying NOVEMBER 24, 1572, John Knox stated: "A man with God is always in the majority."

A descendant of John Knox was Presbyterian minister John Witherspoon, who signed the Declaration of Independence and, as President of Princeton, taught James Madison.

On May 26, 1789, the Presbyterian Churches in the United States wrote to President Washington: "We...esteem it a peculiar happiness to behold in our Chief Magistrate, a steady, avowed friend of the Christian religion...who, in his private conduct, adorns the doctrines of the gospel of Christ."

President Washington replied in May of 1789: "While I reiterate the professions of my dependence upon Heaven...I will observe that...no man who is profligate in his morals...can possibly be a true Christian."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Cold Day in Hell May Affect SD Highway Funding

By Gordon Garnos

AT ISSUE: For months now South Dakotans have been hearing about the shortage of funds in the state's highway fund program. This, with the reduction of fuel being used on our highways, has also caused a cut in the amount of gasoline tax the state gets from motorists. This, of course, adds to the problem of how South Dakota is going to be able to not only maintain its highways and bridges, but to repair and/or replace our highways and bridges.

The lack of funding also poses several interesting questions.

A FORMER West River long time legislator was guaranteed re-elections when he profoundly uttered his often used expression, "It will be a cold day in hell before I'll ever vote for a raise in taxes."

This and similar expressions have almost always been favorites to South Dakota voters. We have been generally recognized nationally for our conservative views, particularly when it comes to raising taxes. However, considering the shortfall on highway funding, South Dakota now finds both voters as well as our legislators may have to rethink "cold day in hell".

A special legislative committee has been meeting off and on for the past several weeks trying to assemble the pieces of the puzzle that will help solve highway funding. Ideas generated from these meetings have run the gamut from the proposal to have yet another study committee, to increasing South Dakota's 22-cent gas tax by several percentage points.

HERE ARE SOME pieces of the puzzle that make an interesting picture. First of all, one piece of the picture puzzle is the fact that $72.3 million will be needed to maintain our roads as they are. Another $17 million is needed for bridge preservation. Yet another $25 million is the cost of the wish list by the Department of Transportation which needs to be done, but which are not scheduled due to the lack of funding.

As I mentioned, the possible solutions are extremely varied. For example, the legislature would have to raise its current 22-cent tax on gasoline and 20 cents per gallon on ethanol by 13 cents a gallon to come close to raising the $72.3 million needed for highway preservation. This appears to be excessive, but if a portion of this proposal would be combined with other tax and fee raises, the $72.3 million may be able to be reached.

ANOTHER SUGGESTION to raise that $72.3 million would be to add the four percent sales tax to the purchase of fuel. It would appear that these two options are the best solutions because using motor fuels would make everyone on the highway share the load. I might add that when I say everyone, this includes those thousands of people, maybe millions, who use South Dakota as a drive-through state.

At the same time, raising license plate fees a few dollars should not cripple any of us too severely. Another option that has been discussed would be to remove the fees on license plates for older vehicles. However, the older cars are generally owned by those who cannot afford newer cars.

This would put a major stumbling block on this proposal.

THERE YOU HAVE IT, a picture puzzle that may not have the l,000 piece puzzle that we used to put together as kids. But assembling the few pieces we do have makes the job as difficult.

How the legislature will resolve the highway funding problem will be dealt with in just a few short weeks. Other options would be to do nothing at all or throw it to another study committee which are both bad ideas.

Consequently, if anything is going to be done, our legislature will have to realize there may be a "cold day in hell" as well as in Pierre awaiting them....

Gordon Garnos was long-time editor of the Watertown Public Opinion and recently retired after 39 years with that newspaper. Garnos, a lifelong resident of South Dakota except for his military service in the U.S. Air Force, was born and raised in Presho.


Thanksgiving Week Poll

You will notice near the upper right side of Dakota Voice that the poll-area this week contains a question instead of a poll.

While polls usually measure opinion rather than fact, this questionnaire seeks two specific answers because the Mayflower Compact is specific as to why the Pilgrims made their arduous voyage to the New World.

There are more than two reasons they made the voyage, and they also list more than two reasons in the Mayflower Compact, but you will only find two of the reasons listed in this questionnaire actually in the Mayflower Compact.

The poll/questionnaire reads:

According to the Mayflower Compact, what are two of the reasons the Pilgrims made their voyage?

- Religious freedom
- For the glory of God
- To start a theocracy
- To escape an oppressive king
- Advancement of the Christian faith

This is an "open book test," by the way. If you're not sure, please use the vast resource of knowledge that is the internet and look up the original text of the Mayflower Compact. This is not an attempt to trick, but an opportunity to acknowledge and appreciate our heritage as Americans as we enter the Thanksgiving week.

Good luck and blessings to you as you take the poll/questionnaire!


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Video: A Look at a Flight 93 Terrorist.

This video about Zia Jara, one of the 911 hijackers, was just released on NBC. It was shot a year or more before the September 11, 2001 attack. Why NBC just now received and is airing this video (as President Bush is on his way out the door) is unclear.

This is one of the terrorists who went down with Flight 93 into a field in Pennsylvania. Due to the heroism of the passengers of Flight 93, untold hundreds of Americans lives--probably in Washington D.C.--were saved.

Let us never forget that what a lack of seriousness and determination can entice our enemies to do.


The Source of National Security

American Minute from William J. Federer

His only son, 11-year-old Bennie, was killed when their campaign train rolled off its tracks. This happened to 14th President Franklin Pierce, who was born NOVEMBER 23, 1804.

Elected to Congress at age 29, Franklin Pierce was a Senator at 33. He resigned during the Mexican-American War, enlisted as a private and was eventually promoted to brigadier general. Pierce's leg was crushed at the Battle of Churubusco.

Franklin Pierce ran for President against General Winfield Scott, whom he had served under during the War.

Before he died, Franklin Pierce was baptized in St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Concord.

His friends included Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Nathaniel Hawthorne, who was with him the night he died.

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote in a biography of Franklin Pierce: "Whether in sorrow or success he has learned...that religious faith is the most valuable...of human possessions...With this sense, there has come...a wide sympathy for the modes of Christian worship and a reverence for religious belief as a matter between the Deity and man's soul."

President Franklin Pierce said in his Inaugural, March 4, 1853: "It must be felt that there is no national security but in the nation's humble, acknowledged dependence upon God and His overruling providence."

William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


 
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