US Government Restricts Free Speech and Expression of Religion

Posted on September 30, 2008. Filed under: Faith, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The “separation of church and state,” such as it is, should keep the government from imposing a religion upon the people of this country.

But regulations that squelch the speech of pastors? Can the US Government tell pastors what they can and cannot talk about?

There is no law that I’m aware of that restricts the speech of pastors, but IRS regulations in place for over 50 years threaten to withdraw the tax-exempt status of churches that speak on politics. I am convinced this is a contributing factor to the decline of morality in the USA. The churches are the center of what we consider moral in the country, and if the pulpits are silent, immorality blossoms.

Some pastors have begun specifically defying this regulation by specifically mentioning candidates by name. Their goal is to overturn the IRS regulation through the court system. Listen: all rules and regulations in this country should follow the US Constitution, right? Here’s the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution -

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

That tells me that the government can’t pass any laws on what churches can and cannot say, anymore than they can tell newspapers what they can and cannot print. Read that amendment and explain to me how it could be interpreted otherwise.

If you’d like to read more, the Alliance Defense Fund is spearheading this project.

“Pastors have a right to speak about Biblical truths from the pulpit without fear of punishment. No one should be able to use the government to intimidate pastors into giving up their constitutional rights,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley.

It’s a government restriction on the freedom of speech and the expression of religion. I cant see how anyone could interpret the Constitution any other way.

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Free Country! Come and Get It! (ding ding ding)

Posted on May 18, 2007. Filed under: News, Politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

My country doesn’t understand me.

Whether you’re a liberal or a conservative, this bill should make you suspicious. It was negotiated behind closed doors for 3 months by George Bush and Ted Kennedy. Regardless of your political viewpoint, I know you don’t agree with both of those guys. Nobody can.

The Senate is poised to grant ammnesty to 12 million illegal aliens. If your house was on fire, would you be rebuilding while it was still burning? No, of course not. You’d put the fire out first. If your house was flooding, would you be trying to lay down new carpet? Of course not, there’s still water pouring into your house.

If illegal aliens were streaming into your country because of free schooling, free health care, and free government services, would you grant them amnesty and eventual citizenship in an effort to stop the problem? Or is it possible that free U.S. citizenship might be an incentive to come here illegally?

The bill promises that maybe someday we’ll have a secure border. Sort of like last year’s bill that promised us a fence. Before we do anything about the existing illegal aliens, don’t you think it makes sense to stop the problem from reoccurring first?

CONGRESS: SECURE OUR BORDERS *FIRST!*

Update:
What’s funny about this so far is who’s for and against the bill the first day -

Democrats for it:
Kennedy
Feinstein
Martinez
Chambliss
Isaakson
Salazar

Democrats against it:
Pelosi
Reid
Becerra
Sweeney (AL-CIO President)
Dorgan

Republicans for it:
Bush
McCain
Cornyn (maybe)
Hutchinson (maybe)
Chertoff
Kyl

Republicans against it:
Tancredo
Romney
Lamar Smith

Straddling the Fence:
Barack Obama
Hillary Clinton
John Edwards

Oddly enough, Mexicans oppose the plan, too.

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Bits and Pieces

Posted on May 10, 2007. Filed under: News, Personal Stuff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The news isn’t interesting yet again today. Republicans admire the Democrat’s desire to surrender. I don’t disagree that the Iraq war must end eventually, I just don’t think Congress should be dictating it. But I’m alone on that point, I think. Tammy Faye Bakker is preparing to die, but aren’t we all. I don’t spend a lot of time reading about her, but what little I know, she didn’t do much to improve the image of Christians. The Pope gives a warning to Catholic politicians. Good; pro-abortion catholic politicians are hypocrites.

Personal stories? Fresh out of them at the moment. I work all day, go to the gym, get home late for dinner, then go to bed. Rinse, repeat. I’m teaching bible class this Sunday, so I’m not likely to have any personal stories this week.

Christian Carnival should be posted soon, if not already. Let me go look for it… Nope, not yet. It’ll be posted at Light Along the Journey this week, but it’s not up yet.

I’m enjoying the built-in RSS reader in IE7, so I haven’t used Shapreader or Bloglines in a while. Hard to make a story out of that, but I suppose geeky tech writers, poor souls, have to write 1000 word essays on stuff like that so other geeky tech people can read about it. I don’t know many people like that, and trying to explains what RSS is to most of my friends would be like speaking French to a cat. But it has a great advantage; you can see if a website like this has been updated without ever visiting the site. Saves a bunch of time on clicking and loading web pages.

Um…. what else…. oh, Starbucks has a new sugar-free syrup to go with the vanilla and the cinnamon dolce; now they have sugar free caramel. I still like the vanilla best. And it has to be sugar-free, those full-fat, full-sugarlatte’s have like 6000 calories in them, enough for a small African village. I’m still losing weight, but I’m not sure when I’ll stop. Some friends the other night told me I looked “gaunt” so I suppose I’m almost through. It’s taken over two years, but I’ve lost 60 lbs. Another 10 lbs to go, maybe. The last 10 lbs, the hardest, were suddenly made easier when I signed up for Nutrisystem, so I’m going to recommend that program. Easy, almost never hungry. Email me if you want a coupon and we’ll both save $30.

What’s going on in your life?

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Court Backs Ban on Abortion Procedure

Posted on April 18, 2007. Filed under: News | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Court Backs Ban on Abortion Procedure

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court upheld the nationwide ban on a controversial abortion procedure Wednesday, handing abortion opponents the long-awaited victory they expected from a more conservative bench.

The 5-4 ruling said the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act that Congress passed and President Bush signed into law in 2003 does not violate a woman’s constitutional right to an abortion.

The opponents of the act “have not demonstrated that the Act would be unconstitutional in a large fraction of relevant cases,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the majority opinion.

The decision pitted the court’s conservatives against its liberals, with President Bush’s two appointees, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, siding with the majority.

Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia also were in the majority.

It was the first time the court banned a specific procedure in a case over how – not whether – to perform an abortion.

Abortion rights groups have said the procedure sometimes is the safest for a woman. They also said that such a ruling could threaten most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy, although government lawyers and others who favor the ban said there are alternate, more widely used procedures that remain legal.

The outcome is likely to spur efforts at the state level to place more restrictions on abortions.

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So Much Liberal Media Today

Posted on October 23, 2006. Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’ve never seen so many news stories trumpeting the Democrats winning one or both seats of congress. Tonight, CNN was saying how great it was to have a divided Congress, or a President in one party and the Congress in another. The media is trying to brainwash the American people into believing this is a done deal. Pelosi is already Speaker of the house by all media accounts.

I’m not falling for it. I don’t believe it. I think the Democrats are falling for their own push-polls that say they’re going to win. Sure, there’s a lot of dissatisfaction among Republicans. Keeping up support for the troops is hard when the media blasts us daily that we’re a bunch of losers and we should quit. Republicans promised us smaller government and they ballooned it into something huge. The Republicans make no serious effort to stand up against the ACLU’s attack on Christianity, gay marriage, lower taxes, or any other conservative issue I can think of. The border is as porous as the underwear men are wearing to the gym (which, by the way, I almost but not quite feel compelled to give them a dollar to buy some new underwear).

But the Democrats offer nothing in the way of an alternative. Nothing. And they think somehow they’re going to win?

My prediction is that Democrats make minor itty bitty inroads, gain a couple of seats. Nothing more. And the media will blame it on faulty voting machines again.

Bleh.

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Border Security

Posted on October 13, 2006. Filed under: Fun Stuff, News, Politics | Tags: , |

I don’t know how one could make it any more obvious that better border security is needed. A Republican congressional candidate decided to make a point by smuggling a elephant and a six piece mariachi band across the Rio Grande river.

A Pennsylvania congressional candidate and former reality-TV star used an elephant and a six-piece mariachi band for an elaborate political stunt designed to make a point about border security.

Raj Peter Bhakta, who appeared on The Apprentice, paraded an elephant and the band through the water near the mouth of the Rio Grande Tuesday.

Bhakta, who favors construction of a fence along the border, said he was in Brownsville to raise money when he saw half a dozen men swimming under one of the international bridges “with complete immunity” and decided to pull the stunt.

Reports that local Brownsville schools were compelled to offer free schooling to the elephant in its native language are apparently untrue.

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Border Placebo

Posted on May 15, 2006. Filed under: News, Politics | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Anything to get the American people off his back. I think years of liberals gnawing on Bush, I think they’ve finally eaten his backbone.

Apparently Bush is going to propose some help for the Border Police by sending in the National Guard. Except the National Guard won’t be able to actually do anything. And it’s temporary only; i.e. until this mess is out of the headline.

Mr. President: Close the borders. I don’t care about guest workers, amnesty, or any of those other related problem. We have those problem because the borders are wide open. Fix the root problem first. If your basement floods, you don’t redecorate first and then fix the leak. Fix the leak first, close the borders.

Michelle Malkin has a fine rant this morning:

Some Bush supporters are admonishing immigration enforcement activists to “tone it down” because the criticism will hurt Bush.

Maybe he should of thought of that all the years when he could have been raiding worksites and strengthening border protection for their own sake. Instead, he has chosen to offer a too little, too late, and all-too-expedient gesture of immigration enforcement as a phony bargaining chip to bribe his base into supporting a historically doomed, dangerous, and utterly unmanageable amnesty proposal.

Tone it down? No, crank it up.

What does he take us for?

You want the American people to buy into “comprehensive immigration reform?”

Message to Congress (since the White House still isn’t listening): Drop the guest worker plan and the amnesty sham. Comprehensive immigration enforcement first. Enforcement now.

No more bull.

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Building a Fence

Posted on April 20, 2006. Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , , , |

It’s amazing the citizens will step up and do what the government won’t do. Minutemen today said we need a fence, and if the government won’t put it up, then they will.

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — If the government doesn’t build security fencing along the Mexico border, Minuteman border watch leader Chris Simcox says he and his supporters will.

Simcox, whose civilian watch group opposes illegal immigration, said Wednesday he was sending an ultimatum to President Bush to deploy military reserves to the Arizona border by May 25 or his supporters will break ground for their own building project.

“We’re going to show the federal government how easy it is to build these security fences, how inexpensively they can be built when built by private people and free enterprise,” Simcox said.

Congress has been debating immigration reform for several months. One bill, approved by the U.S. House in December, calls for nearly 700 miles of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border. The fence proposal has angered Mexicans, with President Vicente Fox calling it “shameful.”

Simcox said a half-dozen landowners along the Arizona-Mexico border have said they will allow fencing to be placed on their borderlands, and others in California, Texas and New Mexico have agreed to do so as well.

Surveyors and contractors have offered to help with the design and survey work, and Simcox said some have said they will provide heavy equipment for his Minuteman Civil Defense Corps. to build fencing.

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State of Cindy's Delusion

Posted on February 1, 2006. Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

You probably know Cindy Sheehan was arrested and removed before the President’s State of the Union address last night. That wasn’t really a surprise – the surprise to me was that a U.S. Representative, Lynn Woolsey, gave her a ticket. Sometimes the Left is really… Left, you know? Cindy was removed by Capital Police because, well, because it wasn’t a State of Cindy speech last night.

Cindy’s posted about her experience on Michael Moore’s website. I’m going to nitpick only a couple of pieces in it:

[...]
At that time, I was wearing the shirt that said: 2,245 Dead. How many more?
[...]
I had just sat down and I was warm from climbing 3 flights of stairs back up from the bathroom so I unzipped my jacket. I turned to the right to take my left arm out, when the same officer saw my shirt and yelled, “Protester.”
[...]
I wore the shirt to make a statement. The press knew I was going to be there and I thought every once in awhile they would show me and I would have the shirt on.

These snippets show she still doesn’t understand why she was escorted out. The show wasn’t about her. The wife of Republican Representative C.W. Bill Young was also escorted out for wearing a t-shirt supporting the troops. I remember a man being escorted out during one of Bill Clinton’s State of the Union speeches. The President is required by the US Constitution to tell Congress about the State of the Union every year. It’s all about the President on that night.

I have lost my First Amendment rights.
[...]
I have some lawyers looking into filing a First Amendment lawsuit against the government for what happened tonight.
[...]
I don’t want to live in a country that prohibits any person, whether he/she has paid the ultimate price for that country, from wearing, saying, writing, or telephoning any negative statements about the government.

I think a lawyer would have a hard time proving that her First Amendment rights are being violated, especially when she’s posted everything she wanted to say the very next day. The fact that she can’t say it there and that particular time and be disruptive at a Presidential event is supported by a Supreme Court ruling placing a “reasonable time, place or manner” restriction on speech.

Read some of her ranting. Does she sound oppressed to you?

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Iraq Withdrawal Vote Fails 403-3

Posted on November 19, 2005. Filed under: Iraq War, Politics | Tags: , , , |

That had to be the funniest thing I’ve ever seen our circus in Washington do. Democrats call for a pullout from Iraq, Republicans say, “We can vote on that” and Democrats say, “It’s a trick!” and vote against it.

Nobody wants troops in Iraq any longer than necessary. Any attempt to schedule a withdrawal though, will just encourage the enemy to wait us out. That’s what they expect us to do anyway, cut and run. I’m glad to see that the Democrats’ anti-war rhetoric was exposed for what it was.

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