Archive for February 6, 2012

This past Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast, Obama said that his Christian faith crafts his domestic policies—particularly his desire to rob from the rich and give to the poor. In my humble opinion, I think the president is getting Jesus and His disciples confused with Robin Hood and his Merry Men.

I don’t know which White House wizard crafted that speech for him, but the verse he or she gave to our Spender in Chief to back his socialism was more twisted out of joint than a Gumby doll being worked over by a frustrated Gary Busey.

I can’t believe that hot coffee didn’t spew from hundreds of Christians’ mouths when Obama took a text that refers directly to believers’ judgment and contorted it to be interpreted as a ratcheted-up government imposed higher tax rate upon those who already bear the brunt of the tax burden.

From a theological standpoint it appears as if the president takes more of an eisegetical approach to Luke 12:48 than and exegetical one—which is convenient. But who are we to judge? Judge not.

Now … before I plow on with the topic of Obama’s Christian faith influencing his policies, I thought that in our current culture of sassy secularism elected officials, especially the president, are forbidden to merge biblical beliefs and public policy. Hell, GW couldn’t even tell Cheney “God bless ya” after Dick phlegmed his tie without Media Matters, Maddow and Matthews calling him a theocratic dominionist Nazi who was violating the Establishment Clause and who, left to his own devices, would be hanging homosexuals and burning Harry Potter books. Does Obama get a pass when he parlays his faith-based policies? Shucks … that ain’t fair, is it MSNBC?

I wish Christianity did influence Obama’s politics; if it truly did then there would be an end to abortion, bearing false witness, and obtrusive government and would allow for more liberty than ever before. In addition:

• The entitlement mentality would be history; • We’d yield up a solid Protestant work ethic; • We’d enforce a tougher immigration policy; • Our military would be stronger; • We’d have a balanced budget; • We’d see a decrease in national debt and an end to prodigal spending; • We’d have a defense of traditional marriage; • And we’d revisit worshipping God rather than feckless humans and their stilted and stymied worldviews.Lastly, with just a cursory glance at the gospels, the honest reader will note that Christ Jesus never commanded Caesar or Herod to collect taxes in order to take care of the poor. He told his disciples to give to the needy, of their own volition, as worship to God and in service to mankind, and only—only—when it’s done by these means and motivations is it deemed virtuous and Christian.

Oh, and by the way, the Scripture has a lot to say about taxes.  Progressives might want to put on a cup before they click thishyperlink to see what “God” thinks about Obama’s tax plan.


Tags:                 Christianity            ,                                    Faith            ,                                    Barack Obama            ,                                    Taxes
Doug Giles

Doug Giles

Doug Giles is the author of Raising Righteous & Rowdy Girls. Follow him on Twitter @Doug_Giles and on Facebook. You can see and hear Doug’s video blog and talk show at

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Americans seem to have become accustomed to the casual use of the “F” word, with celebrities tracking, proudly, the number of times they “drop the “f” bomb” in public.  The frequent use of the “f” word has coarsened our public discourse.  But, many of our most emblematic American values, the very characteristics that shape our national character and contribute to American exceptionalism, have been given a bad rep by liberals because they, too, are “F” words.

Freedom from an overly intrusive government that thinks that only government knows what is best for Americans. Democrats prefer to support over-expansive government intrusiveness in the lives of all Americans, and over-regulation of our industries that is stifling American competitiveness.

Faith, the belief that something exists that is greater than we.  The acknowledgement that, regardless of the religious diversity that currently exists in our country, we were founded as an essentially Judeo-Christian society, so much so, that we have no qualms about putting “In God we Trust” on our nation’s money is a concept which Democrats seem to abhor and Republicans embrace..

Free Enterprise and the belief in a capitalist society, in which a man can change his stars through innovation, hard work and perseverance.  Democrats seek to change that emphasis and shift the country’s job creation power base from one of individual initiative to one of government granted entitlement.

Family and the importance of the family unit as a stabilizing and creative force in our society is a system which has served this country well for over 200 years, but which, now, Democrats have put under attack.  A growing dependency on government support, the sad increase in the number of divorces and the dramatic increase in the number of children born to single mothers has destroyed the primacy of the traditional family at great expense to the nation.

Frugality, in all matters economic, epitomized the early years of this nation.  Sadly, we have come a long way from the days of Alexander Hamilton, who with painstaking care set the foundations for our current Treasury system and the handling of national debt.  In just the last three years, Obama and Democrat spendthrifts in congress have caused the national debt to balloon to over $15 trillion dollars, more than our Annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP).  Four trillion of that debt has been incurred in the past three years, when Democrats expanded entitlements, subsidies, pork projects and crony capitalism.

Founding Fathers have been revered for their vision, their dedication and their sacrifices in creating what has arguably become the greatest nation on earth.  Democrats regularly demagogue TeaParty activists because they argue the need to return to our roots and rely on the Constitution to guide our legislative decisions.

Fearlessness has characterized Americans whether battling tyranny abroad or tackling gnarly issues at home.  But, in today’s “gotta do whatever I gotta do to get re-elected” mentality, we see Obama saying and promising whatever he thinks will garner him a second four years, regardless of practicality and regardless of fairness.

Friendly has always been one of the main American characteristics, whether characterized by Ambassador Ben Franklin, or Mark Twain or the jovial Will Rogers.  But Democrat demagoguery of Republicans with whom they have an honest disagreement on policy has risen to new, vitriolic heights.  President Obama, who speaks often of lowering the volume, is one of the main ringleaders egging on hostilities through accusations of racisim, elitism and fanning the flames of class warfare because he simply can’t run on his record of the past three years.

There are many other “F” words that could describe the best of Americans: forceful, fortitude, frank, fruitful, future-focused, fixers of problems.  But, all these words share one thing in common:  they characterize what is best and brightest about our country and its citizens.

Some politicians, desperate to stay in power, are perhaps, recently best described by “D” words as they descend to disputatious, divisive disagreements designed at damaging, deceiving and dissembling.

Returning our country to our Founding Fathers’ vision of individual responsibility, civility and comity in our legislative dialogue will take hard work from both parties. Only time will tell if they are capable of meeting the challenge.

Tags:                 Faith and Family            ,                                    Founding Fathers            ,                                    Freedom            ,                                    Values            ,                                    conservative values
Lurita Doan

Lurita Doan

Lurita Alexis Doan is an African American conservative commentator who writes about issues affecting the federal government.
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On January 27, 2012, the 6th Circuit issued a landmark opinion in Ward v. Wilbanks. It is the biggest federal court victory for campus First Amendment rights since my own victory before the 4th Circuit last April. What is striking about the Ward opinion is the thread of common sense running through every aspect of its analysis. Even more striking is the eloquence of the 6th Circuit as it defends fundamental religious freedom against a full-frontal assault from the LGBT community.

Julea Ward was one of many counseling students being coerced into affirming homosexuality by a state-run institution. She did not seek to force homosexuals to change their conduct through religious-based corrective therapy. She simply sought to refer homosexual clients to other counselors when those clients demanded affirmation of their conduct. Eastern Michigan University sought to force Julea into a cruel trilemma by accepting one of the following options:

1. Lie to clients by telling them she approved of their conduct, or
2. Abandon her religious beliefs regarding sexuality, or
3. Leave the counseling profession altogether.

Julea’s preference was pretty simple: refer homosexual (and some heterosexual) clients to others more willing to affirm their conduct. For this she was expelled from the counseling program. Then the trial court granted summary judgment preventing Julea from having her day in court.

Julea Ward appealed to the 6th Circuit and won a unanimous reversal. The judges concluded that a reasonable jury could have found that Ward’s professors ejected her from the counseling program because of their own personal hostility toward her speech and faith, rather than a policy against referrals. In other words, that was simply a pretext to punish her for her beliefs.

The 6th Circuit judges wondered out loud just what Julea Ward did wrong. She was willing to work with all clients and to respect the school’s affirmation directives in the process. That is precisely why she asked to refer gay and lesbian clients (and some heterosexual clients) – but only if the conversation required her to affirm their sexual practices. After noting her compliance with the rule, the 6th Circuit raised interesting hypothetical questions. For example, would the ban on discrimination against clients based on their religion require a Muslim counselor to tell a Jewish client that his religious beliefs are correct? Would it require an atheist counselor to tell a person of faith that there is a God?

After suggesting that the answer to both of those hypotheticals would be “no,” the 6th Circuit delivered a line certain to irreparably damage the self-esteem of the Eastern Michigan diversity crowd:  “Tolerance is a two-way street. Otherwise, the rule mandates orthodoxy, not anti-discrimination.” In other words, the 6th Circuit accused the institution of promoting intolerance – the very thing it said it was committed to eradicating. Ouch.

The 6th Circuit also noted that many of the faculty members’ statements to Ward raise a similar concern about religious discrimination. They noted that a reasonable jury could find that the university dismissed Ward from its counseling program because of her faith-based speech, not because of any legitimate professional or educational objective. They added, “A university cannot compel a student to alter or violate her belief systems based on a phantom policy as the price for obtaining a degree.” Government taxation and regulation of religious beliefs is a serious accusation. Now, the issue will go to a jury.

One interesting aspect of the case is that the university did not even argue that its actions could withstand strict scrutiny. The 6th Circuit agreed adding “Whatever interest the university served by expelling Ward, it falls short of compelling. Allowing a referral would be in the best interest of Ward (who could counsel someone she is better able to assist) and the client (who would receive treatment from a counselor better suited to discuss his relationship issues).”

This is all just plain common sense. Everyone was fine except for a handful of professors with too much time on their hands and too little tolerance for the idea that someone, somewhere, somehow did not share their claimed commitment to moral relativism. Or course, Julea Ward’s professors really do not believe in moral relativism. They believe they are morally superior to Julea and have the authority to levy taxes on her “inferior” belief system.

For years, homosexuals have opposed the idea that they are sick, in need of change, and somehow capable of being cured by the counseling profession. Today, homosexuals promote the idea that Christians are sick, in need of change, and somehow capable of being cured by the counseling profession. Fortunately, the 6th Circuit is Warding off their sanctimonious hypocrisy and narrow-minded assault on intellectual diversity.

Tags:                 A Culture of Life            ,                                    Judges and Courts            ,                                    Christianity            ,                                    Defense            ,                                    judeo-christian values            ,                                    Homosexuality            ,                                    Liberty

In 1808, President Thomas Jefferson stated the matter bluntly: “I consider the government of the United States as interdicted by the Constitution from intermeddling with religious institutions, their doctrines, discipline, or exercises.”

Fast forward 204 years and President Barack Obama has reversed that logic, ordering religious institutions to provide insurance coverage for employees that must include contraceptives, including those that may induce an abortion.

Secretary Kathleen Sebelius of the Department of Health and Human Services made the announcement January 20, stating: “Today the department is announcing that the final rule on preventive  health services will ensure that women with health insurance coverage  will have access to the full range of the Institute of Medicine’s  recommended preventive services, including all FDA-approved forms of  contraception.”

The ruling had been much anticipated as a consequence of President Obama’s health care reform. The new law required the administration to determine what elements would be included in the mandated coverage. The administration first determined that the preventative care provision would include coverage of contraceptives. The second step was determining that this coverage would include, as Secretary Sebelius restated it, “all FDA-approved forms of contraception.” These include drugs known as Plan B, which is taken after the possibility of fertilization, thus functioning as an inducer of abortion. The plans must also provide sterilization procedures for women without deductibles or co-payments.

The final step in the process was the decision to require all employers to provide this coverage, including church-affiliated institutions and organizations. The only exemption is offered to churches and religious bodies that neither employ nor serve any significant number of people who do not share their faith. As one church leader commented, this would not allow an exemption even for the ministry of Jesus and his disciples, who ministered to those outside the faith.

Nonetheless, Secretary Sebelius had the temerity to claim, in her statement: “This decision was made after very careful consideration, including the  important concerns some have raised about religious liberty. I believe  this proposal strikes the appropriate balance between respecting  religious freedom and increasing access to important preventive  services. The administration remains fully committed to its partnerships  with faith-based organizations, which promote healthy communities and  serve the common good.”

In actuality, the Obama Administration trampled religious liberty under the feet of the leviathan state, forcing religious employers to do what conscience will not allow. Religious organizations such as schools, colleges, and hospitals will be required to pay for services that they believe to be immoral and disobedient to God.

In a final insult, the administration allowed that religious employers could, if qualified, have an extra year to comply with the decision. As Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah made clear, this intentionally evades the point. “The problem is not that religious institutions do not have time enough to comply,” he said, “It’s that they are forced to comply at all.”

Roman Catholic authorities were among the first to respond with outrage. Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York City, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, who had personally made the case to President Obama for a broader exemption, said simply: “We are unable to live with this.”

This last Sunday, Catholics around the nation heard letters from their local bishops with the same message. The Bishop of Marquette, for example, put the matter with severe simplicity: “We cannot — we will not — comply with this unjust law.”

In other words, the nation’s Roman Catholic bishops have signaled their clear intention to defy the law rather than to violate their conscience. Will evangelical Christians demonstrate the same courage and conviction?

The Roman Catholic Church teaches against the use of any artificial birth control and considers these to be assaults upon the dignity of all human life. In more recent years, evangelicals have had to rethink the contraception issue. At the very least, the issue of abortion has required evangelicals to realize that any form of birth control is a matter of great moral significance and thus of moral conscience.

The inclusion of Plan B and other forms of “emergency contraception” raises the stakes considerably, since the issue of abortion is now unavoidable. Will evangelical colleges and institutions now comply with a law we know to be both unjust and unconscionable?

The National Association of Evangelicals made a statement that described the situation well, but promised no particular action: “Employers with religious objections to contraception will be forced to pay for services and procedures they believe are morally wrong.”

The Obama Administration knew exactly what it was doing. It had received no shortage of advice on this question, and advocates for a broader exemption were vocal even within the Administration. Members of the President’s own party shared the disappointment in the decision. Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania lamented the administration’s “bad decision.”

Others wondered aloud why President Obama had, in the words of Washington Post columnist E. J. Dionne, thrown those with religious objections “under the bus.” The editors of that paper made their own disappointment clear as well:

“The best approach would have been for HHS to stick to its original  conclusion that contraception coverage should generally be required but  to expand the scope of its proposed exemption for religiously affiliated  employers who claim covering contraception would violate their  religious views. The administration’s feint at a compromise —  giving  such employers another year to figure out how to comply with the  requirement —  is unproductive can-kicking that fails to address the  fundamental problem of requiring religiously affiliated entities to  spend their own money in a way that contradicts the tenets of their faith.”

The one-year extension is indeed “unproductive can-kicking,” but the far larger issue is “the  fundamental problem of requiring religiously affiliated entities to  spend their own money in a way that contradicts the tenets of their faith.”

Every president faces decisions that test his character and principles. President Obama has failed this test, and the results will be tragic. He has trampled religious liberty underfoot and has announced his intention to force religious institutions to violate their consciences or go out of business.

This decision will lead to nothing less than the secularization of the good work undertaken by these religious institutions. Faith-based adoption agencies, hospitals, and educational institutions are being forced to secularize or cease operations already. This decision will add tragic momentum to that process.

Religious organizations are being told to comply with the government’s order, or face the consequences. A Roman Catholic college in North Carolina has challenged the Obama Administration in court, an action now also taken by Colorado Christian University, an evangelical college. Concerted calls for a legislative rescue from Congress are being made.

And yet, the decision of the Obama Administration is clear. The edict from President Obama to religious institutions is this — violate conscience and bend the knee to the government, or face the consequences.

We will soon learn just how much faith is left in faith-based institutions.

Komen disgraces its own cause (

‘Carte blanche’ for assisted suicide

Please let us return! Give us new days,      like those long ago.

In almost all of the previous 152 verses of Lamentations, we have listened to the laments of an anonymous writer. He has chronicled in detail the woes of Judah as the nation was overthrown by the Babylonians. He spares no words in expressing his grief over what has happened. God’s judgment has fallen deservedly on his people. Their lives have been devastated.

Lamentations does not include extensive prayers for divine intervention. The writer does not cry out to God to save him and his people from their predicament. The only consistent request in Lamentations is for God to pay attention to Judah’s plight (for example, 1:20; 5:1).

Yet, right at the end of the book, the writer does seek God’s help. But does he pray for the restoration of the nation? No. Does he ask for the rebuilding of the temple? No. Rather, he prays for a restoration of the peoples’ relationship with God: “Return us, LORD, to yourself” (5:21). The verb translated here as “return” is one often used to depict human repentance. But, notice that in this case, God is the only one who has the power to return his people to himself. If God does not intervene on their behalf, the people have no hope.

The concluding verses of Lamentations describe not just the condition of the Jews under Babylonian rule but also our own condition. Our sin has separated us from God and his life. We have no hope apart from him. Thus, we might also pray, “Return us, LORD, to yourself.” The good news is that this is exactly what God has done in Jesus Christ. He has accomplished what we could not accomplish, erasing the stain of our sin and drawing us back into relationship with him.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: Are you ever tempted to think that you can make things right with God through your own efforts? What gets you to the point of praying, “Return me, Lord, to yourself”? When have you experienced God’s mercy that returned you to relationship with him?

PRAYER: Gracious God, sometimes I am tempted to think that I can manage on my own, even when it comes to my relationship with you. So I try hard, and then even harder, only to fall short. Then I realize what the writer of Lamentations also realized. Only you can save! Only you can return me to yourself.

How thankful I am, Lord, that you have done this very thing through Christ. And how glad I am that when I wander away from you now, you reach out to return me to yourself.

All praise be to you, God of mercy, God of grace. Amen.