11/8/20

Avoid the Appearance of Evil

By: T.F. Stern | Self-Educated American

Call me ‘Old School’ if you wish, but certain principles of conduct from another era seem to have been lost along the way.  Let me explain…

Several years ago I was given the assignment to check up on a woman from church whose husband had recently died.  She moved into our area and was still in the middle of grieving for her loss while at the same time she had nobody locally to lean on when her emotions got the better of her.

I made it a point to drop by regularly during the month, no scheduled appointment; just a neighborly check by to let her know someone was thinking about her.  She would invite me into the house, but this is where avoiding the appearance of evil comes in.  Instead, I’d suggest we sit on the front porch where her neighbors could see that nothing inappropriate was going on.

That brings me to the handling of votes and the appearance of impropriety, whether it exists or not, can be proven in court or not; red flags of danger have caught the public’s attention.  Perhaps that should be re-worded, red flags of danger have been ignored by those whose motto is, “Win by any means and to hell with anyone who says otherwise”.

I realize that being a supporter for your political party means hoping your candidate wins; but does that mean ‘at any cost’, to include destroying the fabric which holds your nation together as a constitutional republic?

When I watched a news clip showing poll workers covering up the windows so nobody could see them counting the votes, ignoring the protocols which call for members of the opposing party to be in attendance while the votes are counted, refusing to allow poll watchers during the election and other actions which would lead a critically thinking person to wonder if possible voting irregularities were being carried out.

When I was in college taking a course in Insurance which involved actuarial statistics to determine risk factors along with other issues that comprised that industry, it became fairly clear that some statistics form the limitations of reasonability and allow for the determination of what is unreasonable.  That’s why people over eighty years of age don’t purchase life insurance; the cost would be prohibitive, that assumes you could find a company dumb enough to sell the policy.

The use of statistics is important when looking at votes.  Certain polling places shut down in the wee hours of the morning following the election and then opened up a couple of hours later proclaiming they’d found thousands of votes…all for one candidate; the laws of statistics chimed in and proclaimed in unison, “Male Bovine Excrement!”.  There’s no way, statistically speaking, that all the votes which mysteriously appeared during the night were all cast for the same candidate, at least not legally.

That said, there are folks jumping up and down cheering for their candidate’s presumptive win, closing their eyes, ears, and minds to the likelihood of massive voter fraud; instead, euphorically caught up with, “He did it! We’ve won the White House!”

I’m having a difficult time congratulating the presumptive winners and those who’ve sold out this nation’s constitutional republican form of government for a cheap copy of a banana republic complete with bought and paid for election results.

Some might claim ‘sour grapes’ because my candidate hasn’t been re-elected.  My gut reaction tells me I’m watching an election process that steals a victory at any price and a public that will not only tolerate evil; but blindly congratulate those involved.

Putting it all in perspective with lessons learned from the Come Follow Me home study course, which only this past week covered Mormon’s witnessing the destruction of his people, a people ripe with iniquity who delighted in flaunting their evil ways rather than repent.  I had to wonder, did the Lord know this week’s lesson would be a duplicate of what is going on in America nearly two thousand years later?

The idea occurred to me that regardless of the outcome of this election, the steady downward spiral our nation has taken towards socialism along with accepting, tolerating, or even so many of our fellow citizens boasting of their evil ways; in spite of all these warning signs, we must place our faith in Jesus Christ and find joy in our knowledge of the gospel.  We have enjoyed the easy life; but the refiner’s fire proves us in our trials, whether we endure to the end is us to us.


t-f-stern-1Self-Educated American, Senior Edi­tor, T.F. Stern is both a retired City of Hous­ton police offi­cer and, most recently, a retired self-employed lock­smith (after serving that industry for 40 plus years). He is also a gifted polit­i­cal and social com­men­ta­tor. His pop­u­lar and insight­ful blog, T.F. Sterns Rant­i­ngs, has been up and at it since January of 2005.

10/30/20

Open Letter to Al-Azhar Institute’s Grand Imam Ahmed Al-Tayeb

By: Dr. Ashraf Ramelah | Voice of the Copts

A few days ago news reports stated that you called a meeting of the Muslim Council of Elders in Cairo in order to plot a legal response against the French government over the recent issue of free speech in France that led to the murder of a French school teacher on October 16. You have accused the deceased of using “hate speech” in regard to a lesson he taught on the freedom of speech.

“Hate speech” is the term used around the world to shut down free speech by those, in particular, who wish to limit others from threatening their sinister agendas. However, in this case, “hate speech” actually fosters the agenda of jihad in that cold-blooded murder of the infidel is a justifiable reaction.

An eighteen-year-old Muslim man slaughtered his teacher because the teacher showed the famous picture published years ago by Charlie Hebdo, another victim of justified jihad. I have no doubt that you are deeply distraught over any words or a picture disrespecting the Islamic prophet just as the jihadist was who decapitated the school teacher. For this, you have my sincerest sympathies.

According to reports, the Muslim Council of Elders condemned “freedom of speech and expression,” calling it a slogan for a “systematic campaign” to undermine the prophet and mock Islamic sanctities. The Council has now affirmed its intention to resist this “hate speech” through legal means using the judicial system to deal with this matter.

As you seek to limit free speech in a Western nation, Al Azhar Institute, under your leadership, remains silent in Egypt and never attempts to limit violence or “hate speech” against Christians. As a Copt born in Egypt, I have never recalled your condemnation of the destruction of Coptic churches, violence against the Coptic congregation and clergy, or the kidnapping of Coptic girls. Could it be so because every one of these actions can be attributed to religious Muslims practicing jihad, which is promoted by freely spoken slogans?

Thankfully, no Egyptian Muslim is ever slaughtered for the sentiments of jihad spoken freely, which you completely condone by your silence. As well, you are silent regarding the slaughtered — the Coptic Christian — because it is the fulfillment of that spoken word. Now, you propose an action that serves to restrict freedom in another nation on behalf of Islam and Islam alone, similar to Egypt.

Unlike Egypt, France has a secular constitution that does not include Sharia. This means that everyone’s speech is protected, not just Muslims. You seek redress in the courts of France because you have no respect for this equality. You would like Islam to have special privileges that all others do not have, as in Egypt. You are accustomed to the second amendment of the Egyptian constitution designating Sharia law as the only source of Egyptian laws.

As your Council convenes to deal with the recent tragedy in France, which requires no intervention by a religious body in a separate nation, your intentions speak loud and clear that Egyptians have little hope for the future and will remain ensnared by the authoritarian trappings of religious fundamentalism.

10/22/20

Pope Francis Covers for “Catholic” Joe Biden

By: Cliff Kincaid

Anti-communist Professor Renato Cristin commented in a recent interview that Pope Francis is the leader of the global left, a fact confirmed by Francis himself when he embraced so-called homosexual civil unions. The only question is whether Francis is a Marxist masquerading as a Catholic, or whether he has somehow in his own mind synthesized Christianity and Communism into a bizarre philosophy of “Christian communism.” Whatever the case, Francis has become a significant impediment to the restoration of the fundamental values of Judeo-Christian civilization.

Cristin is the author of The Masters of Chaos,  a philosophical book on the situation of Europe and the West,  and provides a deep understanding of the mind-set of those seeking to impose socialism on the U.S. and the world.

The United States is today “exposed to a risk it was not prepared for, namely the consolidation of a masked but clearly communist political movement,” he asserts. But how is this possible when a seemingly nice guy like Joe Biden has emerged as the leader of this movement?

A similar question has to be asked about Pope Francis, a nice guy who smiles a lot and seems friendly with people. Cristin comments that “Catholic communism, which is in effect an oxymoron, has become a point of reference for many people throughout the West, forming one of the aspects of neo-communism in circulation today.”

The difference is that Biden, who claims to be Catholic, has obvious mental deficiencies, having been a plagiarist who suffered through brain aneurysms, while Francis is in charge of his mental faculties and knows what he is doing.

Hence, he knows his endorsement of homosexual civil unions is a direct contradiction of what the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith taught in 2003, with the authority of Saint John Paul II. It said that “Catholics are obliged to oppose the legal recognition of homosexual unions” and that “Catholic politicians are obliged to do so in a particular way, in keeping with their responsibility as politicians.”

As Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò has explained, the Francis declaration in favor of homosexual civil unions is designed to purge traditional Catholics from the church and solidify his power. It also seems designed to provide cover for so-called Catholics looking to vote for the faux Catholic Biden, who approves homosexual marriages and actually married two men in a ceremony at one of his lavish homes.

Can you imagine the sick spectacle of “You may kiss the bride,” as two “husbands” tie the knot? Biden, a Catholic, was there as if he were the Justice of the Peace. Leaving aside Catholic or religious teaching, common sense and basic science demonstrate that two men can’t reproduce. It is DNA denial of the most basic form. A gay “union” or “marriage,” therefore, is a denial of biological reality. It represents the destruction of humanity.

Yet, Biden’s wife, Jill, tweeted, “Love is love!”

This is the diabolical “gender agenda” that Catholic cable channel EWTN has exposed in a sensational new documentary. Titled, “A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing II – The Gender Agenda,” the film “examines the origins and depravity of the so-called Sexual Revolution, with its current emphasis on gender dysphoria and homosexuality…”

The film also reveals how U.S. seminaries were infiltrated by communists, “who helped usher in the sex abuse crisis which has roiled the Catholic Church in modern times.”

The mere fact that a documentary like this can still be aired in the United States is a sign of hope. Another hopeful sign is the nomination of pro-life and pro-family Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.

Of course, Biden betrays Catholic teaching on other issues as well, most notably preserving the right to life of the innocent unborn.

For his part, Francis is a committed left-wing ideologue whose ascension to the papacy was itself strange, as Pope Benedict was forced out in what seemed like the kind of coup the American intelligence agencies attempted against President Trump. That makes Francis more dangerous than Biden, a pawn of the same global forces Francis is leading.

The other controversial Francis dictate, criticizing the so-called separation of families at the U.S.-Mexico border, was designed to attack President Trump, when Viganò notes “the reality is that the President is confronting human trafficking and the trafficking of minors.”

Viganò adds that “while conservative American bishops are forbidden from intervening in the political debate in support of President Trump, the Vatican allows itself to casually interfere in the elections in favor of his Democratic adversary, in union with the censorship by social and news media of the very serious accusations against the Biden family.”

Those accusations now include reports of Hunter Biden’s laptop computer containing photos of an underage girl, perhaps a family member. Photos already released show the Biden son sleeping with a drug pipe. A Senate report had previously tied Hunter Biden to individuals engaged in human trafficking and prostitution.

The documents acquired by the committee, it said, “shed light on a much broader array of questionable financial transactions involving Hunter Biden, other members of the Biden family, and their associations with foreign nationals. These foreign nationals have questionable backgrounds that have been identified as being consistent with a range of criminal activities, including but not limited to organized prostitution and/or human trafficking, money laundering, fraud, and embezzlement.”

The report added, “Hunter Biden paid nonresident women who were nationals of Russia or other Eastern European countries and who appear to be linked to an ‘Eastern European prostitution or human trafficking ring.’”

Whether proven true or not, it is not debatable that Joe Biden has taken leave of his senses, especially by abandoning his Catholic roots. He has serious family problems that need his immediate attention. He must answer to the reports of Hunter Biden using access to his father to make business deals with China and Ukraine.

Hunter Biden, a former drug addict discharged from the Navy when he was caught using cocaine, may not understand everything he is doing. But you can bet that Pope Francis and Joe Biden’s handlers do.

*Cliff Kincaid is president of America’s Survival, Inc. www.usasurvival.org

10/19/20

Are there Enough Christians to Save America?

By: Cliff Kincaid

Deaths from the China virus number more than 1 million worldwide. Deaths from abortion worldwide number 1 billion. Interestingly, the China virus problem has been used in many states to shut down churches and keep abortion clinics open as “essential businesses.” In effect, the China virus serves as a cover for mass murder and Christian persecution.

In response, a movement called “Let Us Worship” is calling for civil disobedience against governmental authorities in the United States suppressing Christian gatherings. It is led by Christian activist Sean Feucht, who says “I burn to see abortion and Roe v. Wade overturned,” and quotes Mother Teresa as saying, “Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want.”

In regard to abortion, which has claimed 63 million lives in America since Roe v. Wade, the comparison with the China virus is made not to minimize the suffering and lives lost by one evil or another. Rather, the comparison is designed to highlight how the threat of the China virus has diverted our attention from what Thomas W. Jacobson, Executive Director of the Global Life Campaign, has called “the greatest genocide in history.”

“Many Christian leaders are reluctant to talk about abortion,” he says, “but it is the number one cause of death in the United States and worldwide.”

“It is a great tragedy that more than 1 million people have died worldwide this year from the coronavirus pandemic,” Jacobson says. “It is also a great tragedy that about 1 million babies are aborted by choice every month (and this only includes the reported ones).”

He adds, “Look at the massive global efforts every nation is undertaking to protect our lives – the lives of the born.  Should we not undertake an equally great effort to protect babies in the womb and end abortion?”

Taking a religious view, he says, “Covid-19 is a global plague like those recorded or prophesied in the Bible.  This year is 2020, the 100th anniversary of the first government authorizing abortion [the Russian communist regime], and more than 1 billion babies have been sacrificed in one century. I do not know for certain, but if Covid-19 is the beginning of God’s judgments for the slaughter of innocent babies, then either this pandemic or additional plagues or catastrophes may continue, one after another, until we humble ourselves, repent of our sins, and stop murdering babies.”

The Global Life Campaign is trying to provide copies of its Abortion Worldwide Report: 1 Century, 100 Nations, 1 Billion Babies, to “leaders and people of influence in the United States.” These include 130 church denomination headquarters, 40 selected clergy and churches, 60 Christian leaders and ministries, 45 Christian colleges and universities, and 55 pro-life/family organizations.

It is sad that an effort has to be undertaken to provide this report to religious leaders and churches.  But Jacobson cites the case of two Baptist denominations, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) and the American Baptist Church USA (ABC).  He notes, “The SBC stands firmly for the sanctity of human life and against abortion. But the ABC thinks abortion can be ‘morally acceptable.’”

Democratic vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris is a member of the ABC. Presidential candidate Joe Biden claims to be a Catholic.

His review of 14 church denominations found the following:

  • Church denominations standing for the sanctity of human life and opposing abortion include the Anglican Church, Assemblies of God, Catholic Church, Church of God, Church of God in Christ, Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod, North American Lutheran Church, and the Southern Baptist Convention.
  • Church denominations supporting abortion, include the American Baptist Church USA, Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), and United Methodist Church.

But the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court gives him hope. “Based on her faith, character, integrity, and commitment to the original intent of the Framers of the United States Constitution, President Donald Trump made an exceptionally wise choice in nominating Amy Coney Barrett as an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court,” he says. “By her life, family, instruction, legal career, and judicial decisions, she represents the most honorable aspects of our nation.”

Former Trump Campaign Deputy Chairman Rick Gates says Trump’s appointment of Barrett has galvanized voters on both sides of the political aisle. But he goes on to say, “The current Trump Administration is going to be assessed on its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and the state of the economy.”

But how many of those voters know about the death toll from abortion and the differences between the two major political parties on the issue? How many know that abortion has taken far more lives than the China virus? What’s more, how many understand that China leads the world in the number of abortions – and that the number from that communist nation alone is now more than 401 million?

Some observers say that if Trump emphasizes his pro-life stand, contrasting that with the Biden/Harris ticket, he could turn the tide.  There are more than 80 million Catholics in the U.S. and Barrett is one of them.

All he has to do is quote Bishop Rick Stika of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Knoxville, Tennessee, who says that “abortion is the preeminent issue for the Catholic Church” and that Democratic candidate Joe Biden “supports ending the Hyde Amendment [limiting federal funding of abortion], is against parental choice for education, and wishes to make abortion the law of the land.” Putting the issue in direct and stark terms, he added, “If a person supports or promotes abortion, it is no different than supporting slavery. It is the ultimate abuse against human dignity and the human rights of the baby. It is the ultimate act of child abuse.”

A similar message has come from Father Ed Meeks of Christ the King Catholic Church, who says America is “staring into the abyss” on November 3 and that “Catholic” Joe Biden betrays Catholic teachings on the sanctity of life and marriage.

In a new video, “The Silence That Kills,” an Operation Rescue video calls for protests against Catholic Bishops that do not denounce Joe Biden by name.

Non-Catholics are also speaking out. Black Baptist Minister E.W. Jackson Sr., founder of the S.T.A.N.D. Foundation sponsors regular conference calls with experts on election issues to bypass Big Tech censorship and bring the truth to millions of Christians. He asks, “Will Christians vote in large enough numbers to counteract ‘ballot harvesting,’ mail-in balloting, and other practices that make vote fraud easier?”

At the March for Life in Washington earlier this year, President Trump said, “They are coming after me because I am fighting for you.” He was the first sitting president to appear at the massive pro-life event.

10/11/20

Infidel – A Movie Review by Steven Emerson

By: Steve Emerson | CCNS

With the release of his spellbinding thriller and now leading box office hit “Infidel,” Cyrus Nowrasteh has now firmly established himself as one of the most talented, creative, and certainly the most politically courageous film directors –screenwriters in the United States. Nowrasteh has a mile-long list of film credits to his name but readers of the Investigative Project on Terrorism might especially remember a film of his, and his wife Betsy, that I reviewed in 2009 called, “The Stoning of Soroya M.”

It was based on a true story of a woman in Iran in the 1980s whose adulterous husband conspired with the local mullah and the male villagers to falsely accuse and convict the woman of her infidelity. I described the movie “as one of the most compelling, stirring, and riveting films I have ever seen,” a description that still holds today.

It was the first time in cinema that a stoning was re-created—and I believe the effect of having made that film finally shocked the world’s conscience at the time of the prevalence of such barbaric Islamist atrocities, and even put a halt—albeit only temporary—to the radical Islamist thugs who carried out such stonings of women in various areas of the Islamic world at the time.

In “Infidel,” Nowrasteh has also captured difficult but widespread and contemporary problems that many American “progressive” politicians, along with their mainstream media cohorts have preferred to shove under the carpet or worse: they would rather appease the Islamist bullies who perpetrate major acts of aggression, often hiding under the thinly-veiled shield of victimhood, a deception that has worked wonders for many Islamist groups and for Islamist regimes.

“Infidel” tells the gripping story of an American Christian blogger, played by Jim Caviezel, who is invited to speak at an interfaith dialogue conference in Cairo at the prestigious Al Azhar University. When the American professes his faith in Christ as God, he is immediately attacked by several Islamist hotheads who accuse him of “Islamophobia,” an artificially fabricated epithet, specifically designed to tar anyone who offends militant Islamists with the stench of racism toward Islam.

Accused of being an Islamophobe, the character played by Caviezel gets kidnapped by Hezbollah terrorists who smuggle him to Teheran where he is imprisoned, tortured, and arbitrarily sentenced to death on spurious charges of espionage by an Iranian mullah in scenes described by dissidents as nearly identical to the ones replicated by Nowrasteh. As in real life, the State Department bureaucrats don’t want to do lift a finger to help save the American blogger’s life lest they antagonize Iran, a sad but true replication of art imitating life, at least prior to 2016.

In the film, a fascinating subplot develops as a small covert but flourishing Christian movement, led by women (whose Christian husbands have all been jailed), comes to the American blogger’s rescue—again paralleling the historical and unprecedented emergence of an underground Christian movement in a fanatically anti-Christian Iran.

Nowrasteh deserves incredible credit for tackling all these hot button issues –revealing the Islamophobia accusation for the outrageous deceit for which it was created; portraying Hezbollah terrorists as the Islamist thugs they truly are rather than antiseptically describing them as a “political group” or as a simple “militia,” as some cowardly media outlets and European governments do; and not being afraid to represent the vicious murderous Mullahs in Iran as nothing more than Mafioso in turbans, rather than paying homage to policies espoused by politically correct apologists who still justify the horrific Khomeini Revolution and the tens of thousands of deaths it caused on the “interference” by the U.S. in 1953 in Iran in helping to overthrow the Marxist leader Mossadeq. As noted by Iran specialist Ray Takeyh in 2010, “… [R]esponsibility for the suffocation of the Iranian peoples’ democratic aspirations in the summer of 1953 lies primarily with those who went on to squash another democratic movement in the summer of 2009—the mullahs. It is they who should apologize to the Iranian people.”

If past is prologue, “Infidel” will of course likely be criticized by the high priests at the New York Times and Washington Post, whose entire “moral” compass on the Islamist spectrum—endorsing and propounding the deceit of Islamophobia, appeasing Iran, treating Hezbollah with the moral equivalence, even less, than it treats Israel, and refusing to pay any real attention to the plight of persecuted Christians in the Middle East—is totally torn asunder by “Infidel” or by Nowrasteh’s earlier works.

But beyond the politics, “Infidel” is simply great drama with pacing that will keep you on the edge of your seat or sofa. It grips you from the opening scene and doesn’t let you go, along with some wonderful acting, especially by the strangely charismatic British accented Hezbollah terrorist leader, played by Hal Ozsan. Caviezel delivers as always as only he could. Catch the film if you can while it still playing. Otherwise, be sure to watch it when it starts streaming VOD.


09/30/20

Trump Erupts Over Biden’s Phony Catholicism

By: Cliff Kincaid

In a Wall Street Journal story about Joe Biden’s alleged Catholicism, one can see a photograph of Biden greeting Pope Francis, as his controversial son Hunter, who was discharged from the Navy after he failed a drug test, is in the background. The headline highlighted “Biden’s Catholicism” when it should have referred to Biden’s pseudo-Catholicism. Biden is pro-abortion and pro-homosexual marriage, in contradiction to church teaching.

In the Tuesday night presidential debate, Biden talked about the importance of the Supreme Court, saying, “The point is that the President also is opposed to Roe v. Wade. That’s on the ballot as well and the court…and so that’s also at stake right now.” It was clear from the context that Biden was making a pitch for the votes of those who support abortion on demand, made legal by the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973. When President Trump disputed that it was on the ballot and currently before the Court, moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News said, “we’ll come back to Roe v. Wade,” but he never did.

Roe v. Wade has led to more than 60 million abortions in America since 1973. Biden wants to “codify” the ruling so the Court cannot overturn its previous decision. Dennis Howard of the Movement for a Better America has described the death toll from abortion in terms of the equivalent of a nuclear war on U.S. soil.

The Journal reporters, John McCormick, and Ken Thomas failed to mention that the church teaches that abortion is a moral evil. They admitted that, “Until this campaign, he tried to maintain a middle-of-the-road position on abortion rights. Then in June 2019, amid a competitive primary, he said he no longer supported a measure banning federal funding for most abortions, known as the Hyde Amendment.”

A “competitive primary” means that he sold out to the Marxist wing of the Democratic Party, as Biden declared that, “As president, I will codify Roe v. Wade and my Justice Department will do everything in its power to stop the rash of state laws that so blatantly violate a woman’s protected, constitutional right to choose.”

The Journal also mentioned in passing that a Catholic priest in South Carolina, Rev. Robert Morey, refused to give Biden communion over his pro-abortion stance.

“Throughout his career,” the Journal said, “Mr. Biden has said that while his faith informs his beliefs, he has separated it from his duties in public life.” A skeptic might say he does not practice what he preaches, and that he does not take his religion seriously. It is old-fashioned hypocrisy.

The Journal writers did not mention that the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a document stating that, “The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed.” This document, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” is described as a Catholic “teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholics.”

While “Catholics for Biden” gets media attention, as if they are legitimate, the group Democrats for Life is ignored and had to pay for a full-page September 20 ad in the New York Times rejecting the extremism on the issue of abortion by the Biden campaign and the Democratic Party.

We are seeing a replay of the coverage of the 2016 campaign when Hillary Clinton escaped serious scrutiny over her extreme position that prohibited any restrictions on the abortion procedure. Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party were given a free ride by the press for a policy that suppresses the scientific and medical evidence of the humanity of the unborn child.

This year, however, Biden, the “Irish-Catholic,” as he called himself, openly defies church teachings on abortion and pleads for the votes of those who want to continue the carnage.

He actually said during the debate that people like Trump “look down their nose on people like Irish Catholics, like me, who grow up in Scranton. They look down on people who don’t have money. They look down on people who are of a different faith.”

Trump’s wife Melania is a Catholic who has reportedly promoted Catholic teachings on life from within the White House.

Chris Wallace didn’t want to talk about it, but it’s clear that unborn Americans in Joe Biden’s America will continue to be assigned to destruction. It’s no wonder that Trump, the most pro-life president in American history, would erupt in disgust over how the Bidens are treated favorably by the media.

  • Cliff Kincaid is president of America’s Survival, Inc. usasurvival.org.

09/29/20

Before Barrett’s “People Of Praise” Democrats Attacked Knights Of Columbus

By: Daniel John Sobieski

California Democrat Sen. and 2020 VP nominee on the “Harris-Biden” ticket Kamala Harris,, fresh from her epic character assassination attempt during the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, seems to have been designated the lead in trying to derail the Supreme Court nomination of 7th Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Harris’ partner in crime on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Maize Hirono of Hawaii, who plans to make her home visits by taxi after the Green New Deal kills airline travel, has said she will not meet with Barrett, lest her limited intellect be confused with the facts and she is unable to face the object of her anti-Catholic bigotry.

One of the talking points for this mob-in-waiting is Barrett’s membership in a Catholic lay group called People of Praise. Democrats call it a cult, but then that’s what many of them call the Catholic Church itself. Wherever two or more gather together in His name, many Democrats see a cult to be feared and hated.

But before they hated People of Praise, Democrats Harris and Hirono used a judicial confirmation hearing to attack another “cult” people might be more familiar with – namely the Knights of Columbus — Catholics are the sole remaining group that it is politically correct to slander and denigrate and nowhere is that clearer than in the consideration of nominees for court vacancies.

Democrats in the Senate, members of the so-called party of tolerance and diversity, are no longer hiding their anti-Catholic bigotry, putting it on display not long ago during the Christmas season confirmation hearing of  Omaha lawyer Brian C. Buescher, nominated by President Trump to represent the District of Nebraska on the United States District Court:

In the true spirit of the holiday season, Senators Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) showed their true colors of bigotry and bias against Catholicism in a recent judicial confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill….

Buescher is also a long-time member of the Knights of Columbus, an iconic service group of nearly two million Catholics, worldwide, that recruits members for volunteer work and fundraising for charitable causes….

Originally founded in 1882, the Knights of Columbus started as a society benefitting poverty-stricken Catholic immigrants; now, the organization donates nearly 200 million dollars per year from approximately 15,000 chapters across twelve countries….

“Sen. Harris described the Knights as “an all-male society and asked if Buescher was aware that the Knights of Columbus “opposed a woman’s right to choose” and were against “marriage equality” when he joined,” the Catholic News Agency reported.

Of course, he is as is the Catholic Church… the Knights of Columbus were formed to serve in its religious and charitable functions. It is ironic that as the nation observed the birth of Jesus Christ, Democrats in the Senate were busy attacking the tenets of the church He founded, that life begins at conception, as did the life of Jesus, and ends at natural death and that marriage is a union of one man and one woman. But then it is typical of Democrats to respect lifestyles and not religious liberty and not believe that personal religious beliefs, as Buescher testified, can be kept separate from court decisions:

In response to a written question, per CNA, Buescher defended his judicial impartiality:

“…there is a difference between taking political positions as a candidate for elective office and serving as a federal judge. I believe a judge’s role and obligation is to apply the law without regard to any personal beliefs regarding the law.”

We saw the Democrats’ anti-Catholic bigotry on full display earlier with the confirmation hearing of Justice Amy Coney Barrett of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit. Just as John F. Kennedy was said by some to be a stalking horse for the Vatican who would clear each major decision with the Pope, Barrett a practicing Catholic who actually gets it right was charged with embracing Catholic dogma so tight that there was no room left for the Constitution and those “emanations from a penumbra” that sanctified Roe vs. Wade. Catholic League President Bill Donahue addressed the issue on The Ingraham Angle on Fox:

Senate Democrats grilled Barrett over how her Catholic faith would affect her views on court precedents concerning abortion cases during her confirmation process after Trump nominated her as a circuit judge in 2017.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), in particular, showed what Catholic League President Bill Donahue called anti-religion “animus” during their questioning of her religious beliefs….

“Let’s remember … the seminal statement by Sen. Feinstein — she said the dogma screams loudly in you,” Donahue told Ingraham. “That’s coming awfully close to establishing a religious test.”

Feinstein received intense backlash after she told Barrett during her confirmation hearing, “Dogma and law are two different things. And, I think whatever a religion is, it has its own dogma. The law is totally different. And I think in your case, professor, when you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you.”

Let us hope so. The Bible, the same one liberals are waving lately, says Christians, and Catholics, are the light of the world and are to place their light, not under a bushel, but on a nightstand where the light can lead all to the ultimate truth. It is unlikely Feinstein would tell a Muslim nominee, “The Sharia dogma lives loudly within you.”

Note the use of the word “dogma” in a pejorative sense, as if the Catholic Church was a cult like the Druids chanting around a fire waiting for the human sacrifice to arrive. In fact, Barrett has in fact been slandered as a member of a cult which is in fact a legitimate Catholic faith group:

Ingraham agreed that she saw “a very strong anti-Catholic bias running through all of this” outrage against Barrett’s Catholicism and her membership in the conservative Christian People of Praise enclave.

Donahue replied, “I think I know what a cult is. This certainly is not a cult. It’s a charismatic renewal group, which is a family-oriented Catholic organization. And in fact, the pope — who’s hardly considered a man of the Right — welcomed them just last year at the Vatican.”

The Catholic Church is not a cult and neither is the Knights of Columbus a collection of all-male bigots despite the attempts by Harris, Hirono, Feinstein, Durbin, et al to portray them as such. The views and actions of the Knights of Columbus and non-cafeteria Catholics are no different than that of the twelve Apostles chosen by Jesus Christ to lead His ministry in the Catholic Church He founded despite the attempts of Democrats in the Senate to slander them and their adherents:

“This isn’t just about the Knights of Columbus or Catholics, this is an ongoing attack from the extremist left of the Democratic Party to silence people of faith and run them out of engaging in public service based on their religious beliefs,” Penny Nance, the president of Concerned Women for America, a Christian women’s activist group, said in a written statement.

“It is pure and simple religious bigotry,” Nance added….

“This is the kind of thuggish behavior we expect from third world dictators, not United States Senators,” Ken Blackwell, a former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission, said in a statement. “That this attack on Catholics comes from the party of John F. Kennedy, who was proudly a Knight of Columbus, is particularly shocking and egregious. There should be no religious test in America, and I call on my Democratic friends to end this tactic of engaging in religious discrimination to destroy people nominated for public office.”

Indeed, what Senate Democrats are trying to impose amounts to a religious test for nominees by asking the McCarthyite question – are you now or have you ever been a practicing member of the Catholic Church?:

Sens. Mazie Hirono and Kamala Harris, in written questions to District Court judge nominee Brian Buescher, challenged his suitability for the bench because he belongs to this charitable Catholic group.  Hirono claimed that the Knights have taken “extreme positions” such as affirming Catholic belief in traditional marriage and even asked Buescher, “If confirmed, do you intend to end your membership with this organization to avoid any appearance of bias?”  In today’s Democratic Party, the new McCarthyism asks, “Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Knights of Columbus?”

The Catholic Church and its doctrine, which dates back to the first Christmas, are “extreme?” The Knights of Columbus, known to conduct those conspiratorial conclaves known as pancake breakfasts, were founded in response to bigotry similar to that of Harris and Hirono.

Kathleen Blomquist, a spokeswoman for the Knights of Columbus, blasted the questions by Hirono and Harris as a throwback to past anti-Catholic rhetoric:

“Our country’s sad history of anti-Catholic bigotry contributed to the founding of the Knights of Columbus, and we are proud of the many Catholics who overcame this hurdle to contribute so greatly to our country,” she told the CNA.

Catholics like John F. Kennedy, a member of the Knights of Columbus. He would be ashamed of his party.

Watch out for Kamala Harris who, during the Kavanaugh hearings produced a doctored tape meant to make Kavanaugh look like a fool and a hypocrite and to slander his stellar reputation for integrity and honesty. She will say and do anything to derail Barrett just as she tried to derail Kavanaugh. As Breitbart reported:

Sen. Kamala Harris of California is being condemned for leading an attempt to smear Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh – this time with a deceptively edited video of a portion of his Senate confirmation hearings. The California Democrat tweeted an edited video of Kavanaugh’s response to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s questions about the judge’s 2015 dissent from denial of hearing en banc in the case of Priests for Life v. HHS…

However, Harris’s video was a sliced-and-diced version of Kavanaugh’s response to Cruz – which made it appear the nominee himself views contraceptives as “abortion-inducing drugs.”

“Kavanaugh chooses his words very carefully, and this is a dog whistle for going after birth control,” she posted. “He was nominated for the purpose of taking away a woman’s constitutionally protected right to make her own health care decisions. Make no mistake – this is about punishing women.”

As Carrie Severino, chief counsel and policy director to the Judicial Crisis Network, wrote at National Review:

“It’s clear that in his testimony to Senator Cruz, Kavanaugh was repeating the words that the plaintiffs had used in their own briefs. To say that because Kavanaugh accurately characterized the plaintiffs’ position he himself believes that contraceptives are abortion-inducing drugs demonstrates a complete misunderstanding of the Priests for Life litigation, as well as Kavanaugh’s testimony yesterday.”

The Democrats are coming with the ultimate affirmation of their bigotry – are you now or have you ever been a Catholic?

*Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor’s Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine, and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.

09/27/20

A Text Without Context

By: Tabitha Korol

In her book, The Shepherd’s Granddaughter, Anne Laurel Carter drops her young readers into the middle of a land without its history, a situation without context, and a story without perspective, but her message is meant to influence innocent students.  It is a tutorial in subterfuge, a tale woven on an invisible loom, where the circumstances are unseen, the actions undefined, and the slander insidious.  This is my seventh children’s book review and it has left me reeling.

***

We meet Amani at age 6, eager to be a shepherd like her grandfather, Seedo.  His two sons (her father and uncle) and his grandson (Amani’s brother) apparently have other interests and Amani loves being with the sheep.  However, there is no resemblance to Johanna Spyri’s joyous tale, Heidi, as this author has a political mission.  We immediately learn that Amani’s people have lived “under the Mediterranean sun” for a thousand years and that this land, by default, should be theirs.  If that were the case, might that same rule also apply to the Jews who have lived in Poland for more than a thousand years? Does mere residency grant consequential ownership?

No, that is not the case. In Ambassador Yoram Ettinger’s “Palestinian claim of continuity,” he quotes British cartographer and Dean of Westminster Abbey, Arthur Penrhyn Stanley, who observed in 1856, “for miles and miles there was no appearance of life or habitation” in Sinai and Palestine.  The labor migration into the British Mandate was notably Egyptian, but also Syrian, Yemenite, Persian, Afghan, Hindu, Bedouin, Bosnian, and more – at least 25 different nationalities. The point being that the majority of residents in Judea, Samaria, and pre-1967 Israel were recent migrants.

Grandfather explains that the mountain wolves were dispossessed by the Israeli “occupation.” It is more likely that the wolves fled due to the din of the systematic shelling into Israel by Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, and Jordan, and the all-out “Six-Day War,” when Israel made a vital pre-emptive strike that resulted in its re-occupation of the West Bank (Judea, Samaria), Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip, Old City of Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights.  And since then, the Arabs, now self-proclaimed Palestinians, have never ceased their terrorist raids.

As they navigate the grazing areas, Amani sees terraced olive trees and areas where Israelis destroyed entire groves.  Again, the author allows us to believe that Israelis wantonly cause destruction; the truth is withheld.   Property demolition is a method Israel has used in these territories that came under its control because of winning the Six-day War.  The procedure is considered a form of deterrence or collective punishment, as the terrorist is forced to consider the effects of his actions on his family.  When Amani observes the occupation, checkpoints, security zones, and helmeted soldiers, Seedo justifies, “We’ll never have peace through violence.  They don’t trust us.”  His statement, both prophetic and instructive, remains unexplained but implies that he knows the terrorists who are responsible for the local damage and the Israeli backlash, including the eventual demolition of their property.

During family conversations, they speak of Israelis building new highways and new settlements (neighborhoods) throughout Palestine (Judea, Samaria), and are heading their way. Amani’s uncle Ammo, angry that Palestinians live like refugees, wants only to fight with weapons.  As they watch TV, they learn of battles on city streets, riots, protesters decrying the new highways, people crying, blood-stained sidewalks, a suicide bombing in Israel, 11 young people killed in two explosions.  Israeli soldiers block the old road to disallow passage through the eastern gate.  Ammo wants his people to live in houses on Palestinian land.  The author, Carter, does not explain that this land is disputed territory that falls under the purview of UN Resolution 242, which calls on Israel to withdraw from territories captured if and when its neighbors agree to live in peace, and not as long as the terrorism continues.  Palestinians have refused all proposals of peace, using their UN funding for weaponry, terror tunnels, and payments to mothers of martyrs instead of building infrastructure and establishing a country.

They speak of armed Jewish neighbors chasing Palestinian farmers from their orchards, burning down houses, suggesting that they are the aggressors, attacking without reason.  These are neighbors who are retaliating against the source of terrorist attacks, but until the terrorists are apprehended, it is Israel’s policy to respond with disciplinary action – temporarily shutting down power, imposing a provisional curfew, and positioning tanks to enforce house arrest, which also inflicts a financial hardship for those who cannot go to work.  These activities are not explained to the young readers; neither are they told why  Amani’s father, uncle, and brother are periodically arrested and released.  Amani’s brother Omar gives her a book, Al Naqba (The Catastrophe), referring to the (self-)evacuation of 600,000 Palestinians in 1948.  Carter offers no history, no context, no comment.

As bulldozers approach the north valley, Omar, cries out, “They want our land, our water, they want to drive us out.  A man has the right to defend himself on his own land.”  Their mother, Mama, talks about the past and the “massacre” in her village when the Israel Defense Forces attacked.  Omar claims the right of defense, that Israel wants Palestinian water.  The truth is that Israel supplies Palestinians with water. In fact, Israel has doubled the amount that was stipulated in the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement (9/28/95, signed in Washington) to combat the desert water crisis.  The Palestinian Authority pays Israel $3 million per year for their water, which constitutes less than 10 percent of the water they consume.

Mama’s tale of the massacre is Carter’s revival of the most infamous Massacre that Never Was.  It occurred in Jenin, April 2002, when 16 Palestinian terror bombings killed 102 Israeli civilians.  The BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) reported first 3,000, then 520, Palestinians killed, adding unchallenged quotes and false allegations that were repeated in at least half-hourly sensational reports.  When finally Doctors without Borders went in and were met with the undeniable stench, they reported that the body count was unearthed corpses from adjacent cemeteries.  The BBC was fully responsible for all the libelous coverage, falsehoods, accusations of “war crimes against humanity.” Sir Quentin Thomas noted: This was “a straightforward lie unwittingly, but very effectively, served by the BBC, that caused terrible damage and pain.” Carter, knowingly or otherwise, refrains from clarifying that the horrors were never committed.  Knowing only what Mama says, the young readers will conclude that Israel is worthy of loathing. Further, Mama’s village was not “confiscated,” but “recaptured” by the invaded country.

To exacerbate the already damaging narrative, Carter adds two gratuitous Jewish characters to the story.  One is a rabbi who joins the demonstrating Palestinian blockade that chants, “This is our land,” as they seek to stop the Caterpillar equipment from preparing the peak for paving. Certainly, the Jews have their share of collaborators or leftists, but the novelist’s inclusion is psychologically coercive, implying that this individual represents a large percentage of Israelis. 

The second is Jonathan, a teenage boy about Amani’s age, whose “settler” father shot one of Amani’s sheep.  He is sympathetic to Amani and rejects his father’s actions and the conflict.  He says, “My father says a real Jew defends the Holy Land.  I don’t know what a real Jew is anymore  My grandparents saw so many Jews die in the camps. They believed in a homeland where Jews would be safe, but I can’t believe they meant this.  The settlement destroyed your life.”  The author’s message is that the traumatic injustice suffered by the Jewish generation of the Holocaust has goaded them into visiting something similar on a defenseless people.  However, there is no historic precedence to prove that Jews are a vindictive people, but quite the opposite.

The Jews are the indigenous people and legal residents on the land, yet Carter disparages the defensive actions of the Israelis while remaining non-judgmental about the terrorism, which, in essence, is a continuation of the Islamic jihad that has spread throughout the world over 14 centuries.  The novelist has used two Jewish conspiratorial voices to support the Palestinian narrative.

Carter evidently has no concern whatsoever with context, perspective, history, and the consequent dissemination of falsehoods. The danger is that her story will be accepted at face value by the young and undiscerning.  Only those who understand the substory of this tale will realize that Amani’s father, uncle, and brother are terrorists, and it is because of them that Amani and her family have lost everything.

Tabitha Korol

www.amazon.com/dp/B08CP9DMZH

09/23/20

Amy Coney Barrett Exposes The Democrat’s Anti-Catholic Bigotry

By: Daniel John Sobieski

The notion that Judge Amy Coney Barrett of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit will be President Trump’s third lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court has the liberal progressives in cardiac arrest. They threaten Trump with another impeachment for doing what the Constitution allows him to do – appoint Supreme Court justices and lower court judges (he has done 300 so far) up to the very last second before he leaves office, assuming he is not reelected. But it looks increasingly likely that he will be, particularly if he makes such a stellar pick. Trump has promised to pick a woman, so the likes of Sen. Ted Cruz will have to wait until Trump’s second term.

Barrett is as far from Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s secular progressive and anti-Constitution philosophy as one can get. She does not support abortion on demand and does not want to lower the age of consent so pre-teens can have sex. She’s adamantly pro-life, she is the oldest of seven children and has seven kids herself, two of them adopted Haitian children. She is also Catholic and as such will be and has been a target of the Democrat Party’s virulent anti-Catholic bigotry.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden professes to be a Catholic but he has been denied Holy Communion by a Catholic bishop for his support of abortion on demand up to the moment of birth and has been charged by no less than Notre Dame’s great football coach Lou Holtz as being a Catholic in name only. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi professes to be a Catholic but also supports abortion until birth and complains that Catholics are burdened by what she calls the “conscience thing.” Saying they are Catholic is like saying Judas was an Apostle.

The likes of Dick Durbin and Diane Feinstein are sharpening their knives for Barrett who, while believing Catholic doctrine that life begins at conception and ends at natural death no matter what the government says, has never or is likely to never let that article of faith impact her rulings from the bench. Nevertheless, we have the likes of Feinstein speaking Yoda-like about “the dogma” screaming loudly over Barrett and Durbin who is looking up from gazing at his navel to wonder what “orthodox Catholic” meant during her confirmation hearing for the 7th Circuit:

While ostensibly exploring the nominee’s judicial temperament, Feinstein instead targeted Barrett’s fealty to Catholic teaching. “When you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you,” Feinstein said. “And that’s of concern when you come to big issues that large numbers of people have fought for years in this country.”

Durbin was even more direct in his roasting of Barrett’s faith. He took issue with the phrase “orthodox Catholic,” which Barrett used in a two-decades-old law review article, on the grounds that it somehow marginalizes politically liberal Catholics: “Do you consider yourself an orthodox Catholic?” Durbin asked her.

Fr. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, certainly doesn’t think Durbin is one, having expressed the opinion at LifeSiteNews that it would be right and proper for Durbin to be denied a key Sacrament of the Catholic Church, Holy Communion:

We should not see the actions of Springfield, Illinois’s Bishop Thomas Paprocki as extreme for publicly stating that Sen. Dick Durbin is not properly prepared for receiving Communion. Durbin, who lives in the Springfield Diocese, has unapologetically and persistently promoted abortion.

The Democrat senator was one of 14 “Catholics” (and all the Democrats but three) in the Senate who voted in January against protecting babies at 20 weeks of development and beyond from late-term abortion. The bishop has not been extreme at all. In fact, it is encouraging to see bishops boldly doing their job in upholding Catholic teaching….

Perhaps some Catholic-in-name-only politicians fail to see how irreconcilable it is to defend abortion as a right and then to receive Christ in the Eucharist. It is the ultimate contradiction.

Simply put, an orthodox Catholic is one who accepts the dogma of the Catholic Church in its entirety and the infallibility of the Pope on matters of faith and morals. It does not mean being a “cafeteria” Catholic picking and choosing what will get you elected. This allows Durbin to be “personally opposed” to abortion while doing nothing to stop it. But neither does it mean distorting the law to conform to any particular belief which is what Barrett has told Feinstein she would not do:

What he (Durbin) was getting at, of course, was his own support for abortion, the dogma that lives loudly within almost all elected Democrats these days, and it was hardly made better by Durbin’s declaration that he was the product of 19 years of Catholic education. Feinstein put this bluntly. “You are controversial—let’s start with that,” California’s senior senator told Barrett at the outset of her questioning. “You’re controversial because many of us who have lived our lives as women really recognize the value of finally being able to control our reproductive systems, and Roe entered into that, obviously. … You have a long history of believing that your religious beliefs should prevail.” Actually, Barrett has no history of any such thing. In response to Feinstein, she declined to discuss her personal view of Roe v. Wade, but said simply — and under oath: “I would commit, if confirmed, to follow unflinchingly all Supreme Court precedent.”

Catholic League President Bill Donahue addressed the issue on The Ingraham Angle on Fox:

Senate Democrats grilled Barrett over how her Catholic faith would affect her views on court precedents concerning abortion cases during her confirmation process after Trump nominated her as a circuit judge in 2017.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), in particular, showed what Catholic League President Bill Donahue called anti-religion “animus” during their questioning of her religious beliefs….

“Let’s remember … the seminal statement by Sen. Feinstein — she said the dogma screams loudly in you,” Donahue told Ingraham. “That’s coming awfully close to establishing a religious test.”

Feinstein received intense backlash after she told Barrett during her confirmation hearing, “Dogma and law are two different things. And, I think whatever a religion is, it has its own dogma. The law is totally different. And I think in your case, professor, when you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you.”

Let us hope so. The Bible, the same one liberals are waving lately, says Christians, and Catholics, are the light of the world and are to place their light, not under a bushel, but on a nightstand where the light can lead all to the ultimate truth. It is unlikely Feinstein would tell a Muslim nominee, “The Sharia dogma lives loudly within you.”

Note the use of the word “dogma” in a pejorative sense, as if the Catholic Church was a cult-like the Druids chanting around a fire waiting for the human sacrifice to arrive. Barrett has been slandered as a member of a cult which is in fact a legitimate Catholic faith group:

Ingraham agreed that she saw “a very strong anti-Catholic bias running through all of this” outrage against Barrett’s Catholicism and her membership in the conservative Christian People of Praise enclave.

Donahue replied, “I think I know what a cult is. This certainly is not a cult. It’s a charismatic renewal group, which is a family-oriented Catholic organization. And in fact, the pope — who’s hardly considered a man of the Right — welcomed them just last year at the Vatican.”

Yes, Barrett believes that Roe V. Wade was wrongly decided and is a decision no more rooted in moral law than the Dred Scott decision. Whether defined as 3/5ths of a human being or not a human being at all, all are fully human in the eyes of the Creator who endowed all with the inalienable right to life. The Supreme Court occasionally gets things wrong and in both these cases, they did. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it will be because it was badly decided law and the matter returns to the states where it will be voted on by the people and their elected representatives. Voters, as do Presidents, have a right to choose to.

As the National Catholic Register reports, Barrett, who clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia, has been a favorite of Trump, the most pro-life President in American history and the first to appear in person at the annual March for Life in Washington D.C, for quite a while:

According to Axios, Trump reportedly in 2018 told confidantes of Barrett that he was “saving her for Ginsburg” in explanation of his decision not to appoint her to the Supreme Court seat vacated by Justice Anthony Kennedy….

As a nominee to the federal bench, Barrett was pointedly questioned by Democratic senators on the Judiciary Committee in 2017 on how her Catholic faith would influence her decisions as a judge on cases of abortion and same-sex marriage.

Barrett is the mother of seven children, including two adopted from Haiti; one of her children has special needs. She is also reportedly a member of the People of Praise charismatic community, which was criticized as a “cult” during her 2017 confirmation hearings.

Bishop Peter Smith, a member of a related association of priests, told CNA in 2018 that there is not anything unusual or out of the ordinary about the group, which is a “covenant community,” mostly of laity.

“We’re a lay movement in the Church,” Smith explained. “There are plenty of these. We continue to try and live out life and our calling as Catholics, as baptized Christians, in this particular way, as other people do in other callings or ways that God may lead them into the Church.”

Just as John F. Kennedy was said by some to be a stalking horse for the Vatican who would clear each major decision with the Pope, Barrett a practicing Catholic who actually gets it right, was charged with embracing Catholic dogma so tight that there was no room left for the Constitution and those “emanations from a penumbra” that sanctified Roe V. Wade.

Judge Amy Coney Barrett is not some sort of female Elmer Gantry or just some dogmatic member of a cult. She is a pro-life pro-family woman of faith who believes that faith should have more space and more impact on our daily life than just one hour on a Sunday.

As Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass notes, the anti-Catholic cabal led by Dick Durbin and Diane Feinstein are trying to apply a religious test to this nomination, something that is not permitted by the U.S. Constitution:

Democratic U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Dianne Feinstein are applying a religious test to public office, something expressly forbidden by the Constitution. And by their questions to Barrett, they reveal themselves….

This evokes a line of inquiry from an earlier age, one asked of leftists during the Cold War but now directed by the political left at Americans of faith. Concealed in their velvet voices was this meaning, this underlying shiv:

Are you now, or have you ever been, a Christian?

“Do you consider yourself an orthodox Catholic?” cooed Durbin in that oily voice of his….

The Constitution is clear that religious faith may not be used to prevent an American from holding office. But there is another faith now, a strident faith, that of the left, and anyone who stands in its way is to be marked.

Durbin is a Catholic Democrat from blue Illinois, and he seeks votes in Chicago. That he would ask whether someone was an “orthodox Catholic” is stunning.

Chicago is a Catholic town, a Democratic organization town in which parishes helped form the backbone of the Democratic machine. The numbers of church-goers across America is dwindling, including Chicago Catholics.

But there are many who stay true to their faith.

One of them is Amy Coney Barrett, a judicial Joan of Arc who will defend our religious liberty and hers with her last ounce of courage and devotion.

* Daniel John Sobieski is a former editorial writer for Investor’s Business Daily and freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Human Events, Reason Magazine, and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.

09/21/20

A Win for Freedom of Speech Against Islamist “Cancel Culture”

By: Steve Emerson | CCNS

Long before the term “cancel culture” was ever coined, Islamist groups in the United States and elsewhere in the West had embarked on a massive campaign to suppress freedom of speech on campus, in the media, in Hollywood, and in the book publishing industry by claiming that any mention of the term radical Islam or any of its evil concepts was a “racist slur” against the Islamic religion.

But something happened to the successful campaign of intimidation by the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR).

A federal judge last month dismissed CAIR’s latest attempt to censor discussion of links between Islamic doctrine and terrorism at Arizona’s Scottsdale Community College (SCC).

As we reported in June, the lawsuit sought “an injunction against the Maricopa Community College District, which SCC is part of, and Professor Nicholas Damask to block use of course materials deemed to ‘have the primary effect of disapproving of Islam.’”

Even if this were an accurate summary of Professor Damask’s course materials, which it was not, it is not illegal in the United States to disapprove of Islam or any other religion. Yet SCC student Mohamed Sabra took exception to these three questions on one of Damask’s exams, and CAIR wanted to block the use of such material. The offending questions and answers were:

Q. Who do terrorists strive to emulate? A. Mohammed

Q. Where is terrorism encouraged in Islamic doctrine and law? A. The Medina verses [i.e., the portion of the Qur’an traditionally understood as having been revealed later in Muhammad’s prophetic career]

Q. Terrorism is _______ in Islam. A. justified within the context of jihad.

Sabra’s lawsuit asserted that “the only objectively reasonable construction of Damask’s actions is that his primary message is the disapproval of Islam. Damask’s module quiz forced Sabra to agree to his radical interpretation of Islam. When Sabra did not, he was penalized by getting the questions wrong and impacted his grade.”

These questions and answers cannot reasonably be construed as denigrating Islam, as the fact that Islamic terrorists refer to their understanding of Islamic teachings to justify their particular actions is widely known, and nowhere does Damask assert that this is the only possible understanding of Islamic teachings, or that all Muslims believe the same things. The lawsuit was an attempt to stigmatize any discussion of how terrorists use Islamic texts, and to foreclose upon any possibility of understanding their perspectives, motives and goals.

Defining Jihad

The lawsuit also took issue with Damask’s use of terrorism and Middle East expert Walid Phares’s book, Future Jihad. Phares, according to the lawsuit, is an “Islamophobe” and should not be taught. “Within this mandatory reading assignment,” the lawsuit states, “Phares explains that jihad is not a ‘spiritual phenomenon that would be and was abused by extremist ideologies,’ but rather a call for physical action. Damask failed to articulate that other more acceptable, and in fact ‘mainstream’ views of jihad have nothing to do with violence, but instead he improperly urged students to accept his personal opinions.”

Phares, however, pointed out that “the [Muslim] Brotherhood scholars read terrorism differently than the U.S. The Brotherhood and CAIR [are] trying to impose a vision of their own on all Muslims in America.” In fact, numerous Islamist scholars and leaders, including Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al Banna, Osama bin Laden mentor Abdallah Azzam, and 13th century scholar Ibn Taymiyya have insisted that there is only one meaning to jihad – “fighting” to impose Islam.

According to al Banna: “In [Muslim] Tradition, there is a clear indication of the obligation to fight the People of the Book [that is, Jews and Christians], and of the fact that God doubles the reward of those who fight them. Jihad is not against polytheists alone, but against all who do not embrace Islam.”

“It has become an individual obligation, which there is no evading, on every Muslim to prepare his equipment, to make up his mind to engage in jihad, and to get ready for it until the opportunity is ripe and God decrees a matter which is sure to be accomplished.”

Ibn Taymiyya (1263-1328) directed that “since lawful warfare is essentially jihad and since its aim is that the religion is God’s entirely and God’s word is uppermost, therefore according to all Muslims, those who stand in the way of this aim must be fought.”

During a visit to Brooklyn in the late 1980s, the leader and founder of the Afghan Jihad Abdallah Azzam stated, “The word jihad has a special meaning, every time it is mentioned in the Quran and Sunna. That meaning is fighting.”

CAIR’s lawsuit failed. On Aug. 18, UCLA Law Professor Eugene Volokh broke the news about U.S. District Court Judge Susan M. Brnovich’s ruling, which Volokh hailed as “an important victory for academic freedom; professors, including those at public colleges, have to be able to speak freely about religious belief systems (whether Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, or anything else), no less than other belief systems.”

The College Fix, which had provided excellent coverage of the entire controversy from the beginning, reported that Brnovich “used the Lemon test to determine the course did not violate First Amendment provisions on free exercise or the establishment of religion. The test states that government actions toward religion are only lawful if they have a secular purpose, do not advance or inhibit a religion, and do not become excessively entangled with religion in any way.” In her ruling, Brnovich observed that “this case tests the limits of the First Amendment’s Religion Clauses.”

It is hard to understand CAIR’s claim that this course had anything to do with the First Amendment at all: that amendment does not specify the content of any religious belief. But CAIR and Sabra claimed that Damask’s course crossed a Constitutional line by saying that Islam “‘mandates’ terrorism and the killing of non-Muslims.”

Because of that, Sabra claimed that Damask’s course forced him to choose between giving the answer Damask considered correct, and thereby denouncing his own religion, or getting a lower grade.

No Coercion

But Brnovich found that Sabra only had to “demonstrate an understanding of the material taught.” She said that it was “simply not correct” that Sabra would have gotten a lower grade for affirming his Islamic faith. Neither was Sabra required to agree with the authors whom Damask cited. All Sabra had to do, Brnovich wrote, was “demonstrate an understanding of the material taught.”

The judge also concluded that Damask’s course didn’t prevent Sabra from exercising his religion. All it did was expose Sabra to “attitudes and outlooks at odds” with his own understanding of Islam. That is not a violation of the First Amendment.

Brnovich also pointed out that CAIR and Sabra had misstated the function of Phares’s work in Damask’s course. CAIR and Sabra had claimed that students were forced to adopt Phares’s view of Islam. But the work “merely asks students to identify the opinion of Walid Phares regarding Islam,” Brnovich found, “not to adopt his position on Islam.”

This case marks the latest in a long line of CAIR efforts to remove material it considers derogatory against Islam. It entered into a formal partnership in 2010 with the 57-nation global Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s (OIC) Islamic Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) to “redress the image of Islam and Muslims in textbooks.” Like CAIR, the OIC condemns connecting Islamic doctrine and terrorism in the minds of Westerners, claiming that such a connection is “unfair” and that it has “created an unfair misinterpretation of the Islamic message in the Western and Non Muslim worlds.”

“Education and engagement are key to challenging the growing phenomenon of Islamophobia,” CAIR co-founder and Executive Director Nihad Awad said at the 2010 OIC conference. The SCC lawsuit, however, demonstrates the baseless foundations of these Islamophobia claims: apparently Awad and his cohorts see any material they find objectionable as “Islamophobic” and demand their removal from curricula.

The fact that CAIR is taken seriously as a Muslim “human rights ” or “civil rights” group by such media outlets as the New York Times and the Washington Post as well as the ACLU and many Democratic lawmakers is a slap in the face to authentic human rights groups. CAIR was created in 1994 to be a part of a Muslim Brotherhood-run Hamas support network, and it was named an un-indicted co-conspirator in the Hamas money laundering trials of the top officials of the Holy Land Foundation. It has a long record of supporting and rationalizing Islamic terrorism as well as making anti-Semitic comments.

Those who value academic freedom can only hope that Brnovich’s ruling in Sabra v. Maricopa County Comm. College Dist. becomes an important and oft-cited precedent.

This column was originally published at The Investigative Project on Terrorism.