By Andrew Shirley/Shirley & Banister Public Affairs. This article was recently published at CharismaNews.com and makes clear just how dangerously brazen the enemies of liberty have become.
The military’s highest court ruled yesterday that men and women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces can be punished for exercising their religion if judges deem the practice not religiously “important.” The ruling upholds the government’s criminal prosecution of a U.S. Marine for refusing to discard personal notes that had Bible verses on them. The case may now be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In 2014, Marine Lance Corporal Monifa Sterling was ordered to remove from her workstation three pieces of paper with a paraphrase from the book of Isaiah, “No weapon formed against me shall prosper,” even though co-workers were permitted to keep nonreligious messages on their desks. She declined and was court-martialed. A lower court upheld Sterling’s court martial, rejecting her argument that her faith was protected by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
“This is a real-life example of why judges shouldn’t play theologians,” said Daniel Blomberg, legal counsel of the Becket Fund, which filed a friend-of-the-court brief supporting the Lance Corporal. “Here, a few judges concluded that keeping Scripture nearby isn’t ‘important,’ even though more than half of the world’s population belong to religions that teach the exact opposite. Avoiding obvious errors like this is why RFRA protects all religious beliefs, not just beliefs that government officials deem ‘important.’’’
Read more at Charisma News.
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
For more than a year after our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, the newly formed United States still didn’t have an official flag.
Finally, on June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress passed a “Flag Resolution” that declared: “Resolved, That the flag of the [thirteen] United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white: that the union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation” (p. 464, Journals of the Continental Congress, Volume 8). This new flag became the first definitive national symbol of our country, representing the 13 former colonies––now the United States—Massachusetts, Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Rhode Island, Georgia, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maryland.
Although Congress gave some overall specifics on what the flag should look like, it left open details of its final design. Soon, someone took the initiative to make a flag with the stars arranged in a perfect circle, symbolizing the powerful unity between the new states. This is sometimes called the Betsy Ross flag because according to legend it was Ross who sewed the first flag—affectionately known as “stars and stripes”—for George Washington to use as a motivating symbol for American soldiers in the Revolutionary War.
By Stella Morabito. A timely piece originally published at The Federalist where Morabito is a senior contributor.
We should just dump the weaponized word ‘gender’ and say ‘sex.’ It’s the first step back to sanity in this war on our minds and bodies.
Let’s stop polluting our language with the word “gender.” Corruption of the English language was Point A on the road to President Obama’s directive to de-privatize and de-sex all school restrooms nationwide. The ploy that got us all into the lazy habit of using the empty term “gender” in place of the accurate word “sex” has its roots in gender ideology, which cultural Marxists pushed for many decades. Since cultural Marxism is nothing but nihilism, it shouldn’t surprise us that “gender” can mean whatever you want or don’t want it to mean. In other words, there’s no there there.
George Orwell’s classic 1946 essay “Politics and the English Language” discusses how easily language can be a tool of political manipulation. Here’s a great excerpt that I think shows us how we got to today’s state of confusion:
Read more at The Federalist.
Seeds of Evil: College Students Embrace Killing Jews
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
Just when we thought college students couldn’t sink any lower into the depths of mindless Marxian goo, this shocking video pops up. It reveals one of the most unthinkable acts known to humankind, which is why it’s so hard to image how these sensitive “safe spacers” could financially support such a thing.
What is it? Students of Portland State University shown are willingly donating money to “American Friends for Hamas” whose mission is to help fund terrorists and “wipe Israel off the map”—or so they think. That’s because filmmaker Ami Horowitz fabricated the whole set up just to see if students would really give money after being explicitly told it would go to helping kill Jews. And they did! As one student put it, “I’ve been learning about this in school and I’m happy to help you.”
This sounds like something straight out of Hitler’s Germany. Why haven’t these students been arrested? (more…)
By now, you’re probably aware that the $20 bill is getting a facelift. Apparently, our government has nothing better to do than turn our paper currency into wallet-sized political billboards, starting with replacing the image of white, male, Democrat and slaveholder President Andrew Jackson (1767-1845) with that of black, female, Republican and abolitionist Harriet Tubman (1822-1913).
Personally, I don’t have a problem with Harriet Tubman’s image appearing on our currency. I can care less that she’s black, or a woman for that matter. Those are just superficial differences that progressive bureaucrats love to exploit, even though such attributes say nothing about the value of an individual.
However, what intrigues me most about Tubman is that, despite being born into slavery on a Maryland plantation in 1822, she refused to think of herself as a victim. You might even say she was driven by a “Live Free or Die” spirit. Unfortunately, this side of Tubman is never mentioned in the history books. Therefore, I shall do the honors.
By Heather Mac Donald. A must read article originally published in Imprimis. Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of City Journal.
For almost two years, a protest movement known as “Black Lives Matter” has convulsed the nation. Triggered by the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014, the Black Lives Matter movement holds that racist police officers are the greatest threat facing young black men today. This belief has triggered riots, “die-ins,” the murder and attempted murder of police officers, a campaign to eliminate traditional grand jury proceedings when police use lethal force, and a presidential task force on policing.
Even though the U.S. Justice Department has resoundingly disproven the lie that a pacific Michael Brown was shot in cold blood while trying to surrender, Brown is still venerated as a martyr. And now police officers are backing off of proactive policing in the face of the relentless venom directed at them on the street and in the media. As a result, violent crime is on the rise.
The need is urgent, therefore, to examine the Black Lives Matter movement’s central thesis—that police pose the greatest threat to young black men. I propose two counter hypotheses: first, that there is no government agency more dedicated to the idea that black lives matter than the police; and second, that we have been talking obsessively about alleged police racism over the last 20 years in order to avoid talking about a far larger problem—black-on-black crime.
Read more in Imprimis.
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
Have you heard of Josiah Walls or Hiram Rhodes Revels? How about Joseph Hayne Rainey? If not, you’re not alone. I taught history and I never knew half of our nation’s past until I began to re-educate myself by learning from original source materials, rather than modern textbooks written by progressive Democrats with an agenda.
Interestingly, Democrats have long ago erased these historic figures from our textbooks, only to offer deceitful propaganda and economic enticements in an effort to convince people, especially black Americans, that it’s the Democrats rather than Republicans who are the true saviors of civil liberties. Luckily, we can still venture back into America’s real historical record to find that facts are stubborn things. Let’s take a closer look.
An 1872 print by Currier and Ives depicts the first seven black Americans elected to the U.S. Congress during the Reconstruction period of 1865 to 1877—and they’re all Republican!
From left to right:
- Sen. Hiram Rhodes Revels, R-MS (1822-1901): Already an ordained minister, Revels served as an army chaplain and was responsible for recruiting three additional regiments during the Civil War. He was also elected to the Mississippi Senate in 1869 and the U.S. Senate in 1870, making him America’s first black senator.
- Rep. Benjamin Turner, R-AL (1825-1894): Within just five years, Turner went from slave to wealthy businessman. He also became a delegate to the Alabama Republican State Convention of 1867 and a member of the Selma City Council in 1868. In 1871, Turner was even elected to the U.S. Congress.
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
Last week, near a busy outdoor shopping area, I witnessed two women break out into coughing fits while walking by a man who was just about to light a cigar. The match wasn’t even lit, but just seeing the cigar set them off. Perhaps their reaction was purely psychosomatic or maybe they just wanted to send the man a clear message of public disapproval and make him feel uncomfortable for enjoying a cigar. Either way, they sure looked silly.
Chances are you’ve seen or heard something similar. It seems to me that these kinds of Alinsky-inspired theatrics are becoming increasingly common for those who wish to draw negative attention to certain people or situations for ideological purposes. This is especially true among the anti-gun crowd. To demonstrate, I offer the following recent stories:
STORY #1: Imagine wearing an empty holster and then cited by police for “causing alarm.” This is what D.J. Parten, a student at the University of Alabama and President of Students for Concealed Carry in Alabama experienced while participating in what was billed as an empty holster protest on campus. That’s right. No guns or ammo, just an empty holster. Nevertheless, someone apparently freaked out and three campus police officers showed up. Here’s just a snippet of what happened:
Officer: “You know there’s a no-weapons policy out here, but then you want to push it.”
Parten: “Uh … this is a protest.”
Officer “Doesn’t matter. Did you get permission to wear it?”
Parten: “I don’t need permission to wear it.”
Officer: “You need permission from the university.”
Parten: “To wear a holster?”
April is Whiteness History Month?
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
Portland Community College “values diversity,” says Dean of Student Instruction Craig Kolins. That’s why the college has dedicated the entire month of April to whiteness, complete with over 100 scheduled events.
Unfortunately, Mr. Kolins isn’t a very good PR person, as he had some serious difficulty defining whiteness when interviewed by a reporter. After first suggesting it was “not based on race; it’s a social-organizational construct,” he eventually resorted to the usual PC approach of self-loathing:
“I think that as a person with privilege, as a white male, I experience the world very differently than people of color, and so it’s my awareness of that, how I interact with the world, how people interact with me, so I guess that’s an example of how whiteness affects everyone.” (more…)
By Kimberly Bloom Jackson
The hootenanny days of Establishment Republicans riding shotgun with Establishment Democrats may be over soon. Both political parties are so determined to cling onto what little influence they have left, they’re willing to risk it all, even if it means crash and burn at the end of the road.
In my view, we should have taken a big broom and shooed them all out a long time ago. But here we are with an even more arrogant bunch of political elites during a critical election season. As for the GOP, there’s a lot of scuttlebutt about how they’re planning to force a “brokered convention.” Yeah, I know it’s legal and it’s been done before, but depending on how the convention rules are changed at the last minute to suit Establishment whims, it may not be very liberty-oriented or respectful of voters. That’s because it likely wouldn’t be a contest between our two clear frontrunners—Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. Instead, according to numerous mainstream news stories that have been dribbled out in an attempt to test the waters of resistance, Establishment politicians are hinting at choosing someone of their own liking. In other words, if the Republican primary doesn’t go the way the GOP prefers … to hell with the People!
Take it from Mr. Establishment himself, Karl Rove, who recently appeared on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show suggesting one possible scenario:
If we have somebody who we think has been battle-tested, and has strong conservative principles and the ability to articulate them, and they are nominated at this convention, there will be a lot of acrimony from the people who were seeking the nomination. But if it’s somebody who has, you know, has those convictions that they can express in a compelling way we could come out of the convention in relatively strong position … And a fresh face might be the thing that could give us a chance to turn this election and win in November against Hillary.