All

Ergun Caner Loses 'Fair Use' Lawsuit In Failed Attempt To Silence Critics

Ergun Caner has lost his lawsuit against a blogger who criticized the Religious Right figure as a fraud, with a federal judge ruling last week that Caner’s case had no merit.

After the September 11 attacks, Caner built a career around his purported conversion from Islamic extremism to Christianity, but his testimony was later exposed as fictitious. Not only did he completely fabricate details about his background — including facts about his birthplace, upbringing, and his family — but he also spoke gibberish during his speeches, which he claimed was Arabic.

Caner led Liberty University’s theological seminary at the time but the university cut ties with him following the revelations and he now heads Brewton-Parker College, which is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.

A federal judge dismissed Caner’s lawsuit, a thinly veiled attempt to shut down criticism, against blogger Jason Smathers, as the Associated Baptist Press reports today:

Ergun Caner, president of Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon, Ga., filed a lawsuit last summer claiming ownership of two videos that Smathers posted of Caner speaking as an expert on Islamic culture in training for U.S. Marines preparing to deploy in 2005.

U.S. District Judge Terry Means, however, said Caner failed to make a case and that Smathers used the material fairly, as copyright law permits, for “purposes such as criticism, comment, [or] news reporting.”

“His sole purpose was to expose the inconsistencies in Dr. Caner’s biography and criticize a public figure,” the judge determined. If the unauthorized reproduction of his lectures caused Caner any financial loss, he continued, it was the result of “legitimate criticism” of his words.

The misuse of video “takedown notices” — the same method employed by another Religious Right activist who tried to shut down Right Wing Watch’s YouTube page — was one of the focuses of the trial. As the judge notes in his ruling [PDF], the blogger’s actions are protected as fair use.

In 2013, Dr. Caner filed a “takedown notice” with Viddler.com, claiming that the videos were posted without authorization and in violation of his copyright. Smathers challenged the removal of the videos, which ultimately resulted in the present lawsuit by Dr. Caner, alleging copyright infringement in violation of 17 U.S.C. §§ 106,506.



Smathers claims that he posted he videos featuring Dr. Caner as a religiously based criticism of a public figure and, thus, his posting constituted fair use.

The Court notes that Dr. Caner has apparently conceded this issue since he has offered no argument in his response with respect to Smathers’s assertion of fair use.



Dr. Caner’s concession notwithstanding, the facts of this case support the application of fair use.

The affirmative defense of fair use is codified at 17 U.S.C. § 107 and provides that “the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies . . . , for purposes such as criticism, comment, [or] news reporting . . . , is not an infringement of copyright.”



All of Dr. Caner’s claims of copyright infringement against Smathers are hereby DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.

Geller Accuses Obama of Using Easter Message To 'Proselytize For Islam'

Anti-Muslim activist Pamela Geller is, of course, very upset that President Obama dared to mention Islam in passing in his radio address commemorating Easter and Passover this weekend, and claims that the president attempted to “proselytize for Islam" when he listed Muslims, along with Christians, Jews, Hindus and Sikhs, as people who share a “common thread of humanity."

After speaking in detail about how he and his family would be celebrating the Resurrection of Christ and remembering “the grace of an awesome God, who loves us so deeply that He gave us his only Son, so that we might live through Him,” the president said:

The common thread of humanity that connects us all – not just Christians and Jews, but Muslims and Hindus and Sikhs – is our shared commitment to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.

The inclusion of Muslims on that list infuriated Geller, who accused the president of using the address to “proselytize for Islam. On Easter. It’s sick.”

“Does Obama ever mention Christians or Jews or Hindus when he makes his long-winded Ramadan messages?” she asks.

As a matter of fact, in the president’s Ramadan message last year, he expressed a very similar sentiment:

For the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims, Ramadan is a time for thoughtful reflection, fasting and devotion. It is also an opportunity for family and friends to come together and celebrate the principles that bind people of different faiths – a commitment to peace, justice, equality and compassion towards our fellow human beings. These bonds are far stronger than the differences that too often drive us apart.
 

Concerned Women For America Opposes National Women's History Museum, Angry Website Doesn't Mention CWA Founder

Mystified by growing support in Congress for the National Women’s History Museum project, Concerned Women for America is now warning that the proposed museum will “indoctrinate those who visit the museum” into “leftist ideology.”

The group is especially peeved that the project’s website doesn’t include mentions of CWA founder Beverly LaHaye or Religious Right activists like Alveda King and Star Parker.

While the idea of celebrating women is admirable, the content of such a museum would create a shrine to the leftist ideology and would not provide an accurate portrayal of American women. It is for this reason we object to the National Women’s History Museum as currently structured.



• In 2010, Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC) opposed the building of the NWHM on the National Mall and successfully requested Senators Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina) and Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) to place a hold on this bill.

• During the 112th Congress, CWALAC worked with Republican House leadership to ensure this bill did not come to the House floor for a vote.



• The NWHM does not accurately portray women’s history and for this reason we oppose the NWHM. The museum’s online exhibits tout the “progressive era” and feminism but do not acknowledge their ramifications, the destruction of marriage and the family. The online exhibits highlight the feminists’ view of “free love” (like Victoria Woodhull) but do not acknowledge their pro-life ones.

• The NWHM will indoctrinate those who visit the museum to a jaundiced view of women’s history. The NWHM website attached to this proposed museum references Margaret Sanger nine times and Victoria Woodhull over 20, while referencing Phyllis Schlafly once and not mentioning Beverly LaHaye at all. It also highlights Sandra Fluke, while ignoring Kay Coles James, Alveda King, and Star Parker.

Deace Implies Same-Sex Marriage Is As Impossible As Human Flight

Speaking with Phyllis Schlafly on Eagle Forum Live this weekend, Iowa talk show host Steve Deace implied that same-sex couples who want to get married are like people who want to be able to fly.

Responding to a caller who asked what he should say to a friend who says “it’s not government’s job to legislate morality,” Deace responded that the friend has “bought into some postmodern thinking” where he doesn’t want to impose his idea of what’s “wrong and icky” on other people.

Deace compared this to fighting the law of gravity, implying that a gay person who wants to get married is like someone who jumps off a skyscraper because they think they can fly.

“I mean, someone might think, I have the right to fly and I’d love to fly and I have a desire to fly and I even found a judge that gave me a piece of paper that told me I have the right to fly,” he said. “But when I fling myself off the top of a skyscraper, I run smack-dab into the law of gravity.”

“It didn’t change because some judge said so,” he added.
 

Caller: I’ve got a buddy who’s semi-liberal and he says, his main premise is that it’s not government’s job to legislate morality. And I was wondering what you’ve got to say about that.

Schlafly: Well, practically ever law is legislating morality.

Deace: Phyllis is correct. Everything is morality. That’s a false objection. Question him further to find exactly out what that means. And I’m telling you, what I’m 99 percent positive that it will mean is that he’s bought into some postmodern thinking that says, ‘Well, yeah, I think this stuff is wrong and icky for me but I can’t impose my value system on somebody else.’

But of course, that’s a very slippery slope as well. I mean, someone might think, I have the right to fly and I’d love to fly and I have a desire to fly and I even found a judge that gave me a piece of paper that told me I have the right to fly. But when I fling myself off the top of a skyscraper, I run smack-dab into the law of gravity. It didn’t change because some judge said so. It still exists. So, chances are that’s a false objection from your friend because he’s bought into some postmodern thinking about over-judgementalism.

MRC Attacks The Media For Covering Sports, Non-Christian Faiths

Dan Gainor of the Media Research Center thinks media outlets are covertly attacking Christianity by reporting on sports and non-Christian faiths. Speaking Friday with Religious Right talk show host Janet Mefferd, Gainor complained that newspapers have “an entire section devoted to sports” but are devoid of mentions of religion.

When newspapers do cover religion, Gainor adds, the stories are “filled with lefty propaganda about faith that attacks Christianity.”

“That’s the lefty view of faith, we gotta show Hindu this, we gotta show Buddhism, we gotta talk about Scientology, we gotta talk about Wiccans.” he said. “No, why not try to be at least representative? If there’s 80-85 percent Christians [in the US population], it’s going to be 80-85 percent Christian, and then we will occasionally dabble in these other faiths, we’ll certainly include Judaism,” he said.

WorldNetDaily Now Hopes Edward Snowden Will Vindicate The Birther Movement

WorldNetDaily reporter Jerome Corsi, a leader of the birther movement, is enthralled by Michael Shrimpton, a British “self-proclaimed intelligence expert” who claims that Edward Snowden possesses evidence proving that Stanley Ann Dunham is not President Obama’s real mother and that Obama was actually born in Kenya.

In his article, “Obama’s Origins Resurface At Intel Expert’s Trial,” Corsi claims that Shrimpton has the latest birther bombshell: “Edward Snowden, as part of his negotiations to leave Hong Kong, agreed to deliver to Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow the classified U.S. military intelligence file on Obama’s DNA,” revealing that Obama was “born in Mombasa, Kenya, in about 1960” and “establishing that Stanley Ann Dunham was not Obama’s biological mother.”

In a nearly empty courtroom at the Southwerk Crown Court by the historic London Bridge, a hearing took place in a criminal case that not only has national security implications for the United Kingdom, but, curiously, is woven into the increasingly bizarre fabric of the controversy over Barack Obama’s presidential eligibility.

When it came his time to speak, defendant Michael Shrimpton, a middle-aged London barrister by profession and self-proclaimed intelligence expert, politely issued to the judge a series of interrogatories that made clear he plans to launch a vigorous defense, representing himself before the court.

The criminal charges brought by the British government against Shrimpton under Section 51(2) of the Criminal Law Act 1977 accuse him of falsely notifying the British government to prepare for a terrorist nuclear attack on the 2012 Olympics in London that the British government claims had no basis in reality.

It’s the same Michael Shrimpton who appears in a 2008 video that began re-circulating earlier this year on the Internet in which he claims to have been privy to shocking intelligence information on Obama’s origins. Shrimpton contends to this day that the CIA collected DNA from then-Sen. Obama and a grandparent, establishing that Stanley Ann Dunham was not Obama’s biological mother.



Shrimpton says he was informed that Obama was born in Mombasa, Kenya, in about 1960, which means, he said, the information sits in British intelligence files, because that territory was under the British Empire at the time.



Shrimpton said it was his understanding that the DNA samples were collected at a fundraising dinner from water glasses that were bagged after the dinner.



In conversations with WND, nevertheless, Shrimpton doubled down on the claims he made in 2008 by asserting that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, as part of his negotiations to leave Hong Kong, agreed to deliver to Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow the classified U.S. military intelligence file on Obama’s DNA.

Shrimpton made clear he intends to subpoena from the CIA and from British intelligence any records either agency may have on Obama’s DNA.

“I intend to stand by my allegations regarding the Obama birth certificate, knowing that U.S. intelligence agencies will prefer to characterize me as crazy and delusional rather than admit the CIA has the files I believe they have on Obama DNA,” Shrimpton insisted.

White Nationalists Demand Credit For Another Idea That's Gone Mainstream In The GOP

The white nationalist website VDARE is once again demanding credit for an idea that it has been championing for years that has now gone mainstream in the GOP.

Last year, we reported that VDARE writer John Derbyshire (formerly of the National Review) was annoyed that prominent Republicans were failing to credit racist VDARE writer Steve Sailer when they advocated a plan nearly identical to the ‘Sailer Strategy’: that is, the idea that the GOP can only survive by solidifying and growing its white base while alienating people of color. Sailer had been persistently advocating this tactic for over a decade when it suddenly came into vogue among conservatives who opposed the Gang of Eight’s immigration reform plan.

Now, another VDARE writer is upset that more and more immigration reform opponents are pushing another VDARE argument without giving the white nationalists credit. This time, the argument is that steady or increased legal immigration – with or without a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrations – will ruin the Republican party because immigrants are inherently liberal.

In a post on Friday, VDARE writer James Fulford highlights a recent study from the Center for Immigration Studies which argues that Republicans shouldn’t bother with immigration reform because immigrants will inevitably vote for Democrats. Fulford complains that neither the CIS report nor the conservative outlets covering it “manages to credit Peter Brimelow or VDARE.com for saying all this early and often, possibly because it they're scared of Media Matters and the SPLC.” As he notes, VDARE has been pushing the argument since as early as 2001.

The CIS report solidifies what has become a common talking point among even relatively mainstream anti-immigrant groups. CIS spokespeople repeatedly argue that the country shouldn’t “ import more” immigrants because they’ll never vote Republican anyway. Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum has also been pushing this line of argument and released its own report on the subject. Schlafly probably put the argument the most succinctly when she said in February, “These immigrants, legal and illegal, coming in don’t really understand our country and will probably vote Democratic .” She also suggested that Latino immigrants “don’t understand” the Bill of Rights and reject American values.

It’s no surprise that this idea originated in the racist underworld of VDARE. After all, the subtext of the argument is that the GOP should rely on what Pat Buchanan called a new “Southern Strategy” and dump any plans to expand its appeal beyond its mostly white base. As the “Southern Strategy” comparison makes clear, that involves both scapegoating immigrants and ignoring their voices in government.

Once Again David Barton Falsely Claims The Obama Administration Won't Prosecute Child Pornography

As we have noted many times before, the simple fact that a claim happens to be demonstrably false has never stopped David Barton from repeating that claim endlessly. That tradition remains intact as today, on his "WallBuilders Live" radio program, Barton once again asserted that the Department of Justice under President Obama has entirely refused to prosecute those who traffic in child pornography.

Barton made this same claim back in 2011 and we pointed out then that he was lying, but that didn't stop him from making the false claim once again today, asserting that, until recently, nobody in America supported pedophilia but now it is gaining support because the Obama administration is turning a blind eye to the issue of child pornography by refusing to prosecute anyone for it.

"The Obama administration has refused to prosecute any child pornography," Barton lied, "which is, again, sex between children and adults ... They have refused to prosecute any of it":

We would just like to point out that, in the last week alone, the FBI has issued no less than six different press releases announcing indictments of or sentences for people involved in trafficking of child pornography.

How exactly these sentences are being handed down if, as Barton claims, the Department of Justice "has refused to prosecute any child pornography" is beyond us.

But, once again, the mere fact that Barton is demonstrably wrong about this claim will not, of course, stop him from repeating it time and time again.

Louie Gohmert Warns Gay Marriage Will Put America In 'The Dustbin Of History'

After suggesting that the House move to arrest Eric Holder, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) told Washington Watch host Tony Perkins last week that the push for marriage equality undermines biology and will inevitably lead the “country down the road to the dustbin of history.”

Unsurprisingly, this isn’t the first time Gohmert has made such a claim.

We see marriage that’s been defined for the history of man, whether you believe in nature or as we do nature’s God, it’s designed that it’s just biologically for a man and a woman to procreate and to create a family and that’s not our ruling and yet we’re going to throw that aside and say we are so much smarter than the entire history of mankind when actually we’re not smarter, we’re just falling into the same rut that Solomon talked about: ‘There’s nothing new under the sun.’ This is what you’re going to do to lead your country down the road to the dustbin of history and we don’t have to go there.

Louie Gohmert Wants Congress To Arrest Eric Holder

In an interview Friday on the Family Research Council’s Washington Watch, Rep. Louie Gohmert said that Congress should considering passing a resolution directing the sergeant at arms to arrest Attorney General Eric Holder.

FRC president Tony Perkins repeated his suggestion from earlier this month that the House sergeant at arms should have “slapped the cuffs on” Holder and “stuffed him down there in the cell in the Capitol” during the State of the Union Address in response to the House GOP’s 2012 vote to hold Holder in contempt of Congress.

In response, Gohmert suggested Republicans consider passing “a resolution directing the Sergeant at Arms to detain anyone who is in contempt of Congress.”

“There is a cell there on Capitol Hill,” he added.

Gohmert: When you have someone like an attorney general who is in contempt of Congress, what can we do? Someone in contempt of Congress comes waltzing into the House chamber and he’s in contempt of Congress as found by the Congress, what can be done? I was told that actually you can pass a resolution directing the sergeant at arms to detain anyone who is in contempt of Congress until such time as they comply with the requirement that put him in contempt. In this case, they didn’t provide information from the Justice Department, they had it, they refused to provide it, we found him in contempt.

Perkins: It’s interesting you bring that up because as you recall I was sitting next to your guest at the State of the Union address, Sean Hannity and I were sitting up in the balcony and that was the thought that crossed my mind when I saw the attorney general, Eric Holder, walk into the chamber along with the president’s cabinet. I said, here’s a guy—this guy’s got a lot of nerve, he’s in contempt of Congress, and this didn’t just happen, this has been going on now for over a year or longer, almost two years or three I guess since ‘Fast & Furious’ and he’s refused to provide this documentation to Congress, he’s in contempt of Congress, and he just strolls right in and sits on the front row there. I’m thinking, my goodness, why doesn’t Congress do something about that?

Gohmert: My thought was the only thing that we can probably do is defund any area of the Justice Department that is in contempt, that won’t produce the documents that were demanded. But apparently another option would be to direct a sergeant at arms, somebody comes into our jurisdiction at Capitol Hill, you restrain them until such time, and there is a cell there on Capitol Hill.