Indiana

Right-Wing Pundit: 'Gov. Pence Is The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Of 2015'

Writing today in WorldNetDaily, Liberty Counsel communications director Charla Bansley proposed that pastors and “those victimized by religious intolerance” from all around the country hold a massive rally in Indianapolis to defend Indiana’s ‘religious freedom’ law.

“Gov. Pence is the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. of 2015,” the Religious Right activist wrote.

She also made the erroneous claim that the Indiana law is just like other versions of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Can conservatives responding to the recent controversy in Indiana over religious freedom learn anything from liberals about messaging? After the Michael Brown shooting, liberal leaders from the left, such as Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, and secular progressive communities from across America seized the opportunity and flocked to Ferguson, Missouri, to take over the narrative, blaming Brown’s death on “institutional racism.” Universities as far away as George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, held diversity discussions. College students from all over the country joined the crowds walking the streets chanting “Hands up, don’t shoot.”

Today, the church must contend for the faith and the faithful in like manner. What churches and religious universities will take a page out of the liberal playbook to rally, to march, to hold candle vigils and to speak out? What pastors will go to Indianapolis to stand by Gov. Mike Pence and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act? Which organizations will help pay the way for those victimized by religious intolerance – bakers, photographers, venue owners – to make their way to Indianapolis? When will we as a church begin matching our words with action? If not now, then when?



Pence said Sunday that the new state law “is not about discrimination. This is about empowering people to confront government overreach.” Unfortunately, those words went over the heads of most people watching the interview. Homosexual activists went to the streets claiming the law would legalize discrimination, and Americans believed the false narrative. The truth is a federal RFRA was signed by President Bill Clinton in 1993, and 19 other states have passed similar laws, but not one case of discrimination exists. The real cases of discrimination are the religious businesses who have been sued for refusing to participate in a same-sex wedding: the Catholic B&B owners who didn’t want to host a same-sex wedding in Vermont, the baker in Oregon, the photographer in New Mexico, the florist in Washington and a host of others.

Gov. Pence is the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. of 2015, courageously defending the bakers, photographers, florists, ministers, county clerks, and owners of wedding venues who, after a lifetime of acquiring skills and building businesses, have seen their livelihoods destroyed, forced to pay exorbitant fines and even threatened with jail.

Pat Robertson: Americans Must Resist 'Totalitarian Dictators' Of 'The Gay Lobby'

On “The 700 Club” today, Pat Robertson denounced elected officials and business leaders for “caving” to the “gay lobby” in criticizing a new “religious liberty” law in Indiana.

“They’re not liberal, they’re totalitarian dictators,” Robertson said of the law’s critics. “They’re going to force you into their mold, they’re going to make you conform to political correctness, they’re going to make you do what the Left thinks is right, they’re going to make you acknowledge homosexual marriage, they’re going to make you embrace lifestyles that you think are anti-biblical despite your religious belief.”

Robertson continued: “The fact that these gays are making such a fuss of it and businesses are caving, businesses all over the country are caving, they are terrified of the gay lobby, terrified of the gay lobby. Don’t we have any backbone left in this country?”

Robertson’s comments followed a CBN News report which falsely suggested that Indiana’s new law is no different from previous federal and state versions of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Indiana Anti-Gay Activist: We Are Victims Of 'Spiritual Warfare'

Yesterday, Micah Clark of the American Family Association’s Indiana chapter, who helped craft Indiana’s new “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” and even stood right behind Gov. Mike Pence during the signing ceremony, said that any effort to clarify that the act will not sanction discrimination would “totally destroy” the law.

Clark repeated that message today on “Sandy Rios in the Morning,” where he told guest host Fred Jackson that his state is right now bogged down in “spiritual warfare” over the fate of the law, which Clark falsely claimed was the exact same law as RFRA statutes enacted on the federal level and in other states.

While he helped pass the broad, controversial law that effectively allows businesses to discriminate against certain customers, such as gays and lesbians, Clark said that Religious Right activists like hisemlf are the real victims in the fight.

“The first thing you have to do is pray, because this is a spiritual war,” Clark told listeners. “There is no doubt about that, by the Twitter comments I get, by the email comments and threats from the opposition, some pornographic things that are out there and obscene things being said. This is a campaign of fear and lies and so this is a spiritual war that people must pray about.”

“I said a few years ago, ‘if we won’t stand for marriage, what will we stand for,’ but if we won’t stand for our own religious freedom, what will we stand for as a church?” he added.

Beck: Criticism Of Indiana's 'Religious Freedom' Law Will Lead To Concentration Camps

Glenn Beck opened his radio program today by continuing his defense of the recently passed Indiana law that allows business owners to discriminate in the name of "religious freedom" by warning that attacks on such laws will lead to people being placed in concentration camps and killed.

Declaring that "gay activists will boycott, will make it uncomfortable, they'll smear them, they'll just ratchet up the hate" against any business owner who refuses to provide services to a same-sex wedding in an attempt to drive them out of business, Beck insisted that everyone just has to "heal our hearts" and realize that religious business owners are not motivated by hate but rather by their faith.

"Let's stop forcing each other to do things," Beck begged. "You don't change anything. That ends up in concentration camps. You just start grinding and grinding and grinding away until you're in separate worlds and nobody talks to each other and then, whoever has the power, round 'em up and kill 'em because those guys are the problem."

"That's how it happens," he said, which prompted his co-host Stu Burguiere to quip that Beck managed to make it a mere fourteen minutes into the radio show today before he started warning about people being rounded up and locked away in concentration camps:

Beck: People Who Are 'Actually' Religious Should Be Allowed To Discriminate

On his radio broadcast yesterday, Glenn Beck weighed in on the controversy surrounding Indiana's new law which grants business owners the right to discriminate in the name of "religious freedom," by defending the law ... so long as the business owner practicing the discrimination is actually religious.

Under Beck's scenario, businesses are not allowed to discriminate against anybody unless the owners can adequately prove to the government that they are really living their faith and not just engaging in rank bigotry.

"This is the key here," Beck said. "You actually have to be religious. You can't just be somebody like 'I hate them gays so I'm not going to do it.' No, tell me a little bit about your religion."

Beck said that members of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A), for instance, which recently voted to allow its pastors to preside over same-sex marriages, wouldn't be allowed to deny their services to a gay couple.

"Sorry dude, you're making a wedding cake because you say you belong to this church [and] they happen to agree with it," Beck said.

"Show me about how you're living your life in your church," he said. "If you're living your faith, well then I can't say anything about it since its your religious right. And gay people have to get over it. And anybody else who might be bigoted and you own a bakery — I don't want to sell anyone them cookies — well, dude, you have to and that's just the way it is. You need to get over it":

Suppose for a moment that Beck's standard was actually adopted and government officials were tasked with determining whether individual business owners are "living their faith" enough to qualify for this exemption and then just try to imagine the screams of outrage that would ring out from Beck and other Religious Right activists once the state started denying such exemptions because it had determined that the people in question just weren't religious enough.

Fischer: Indiana Law Is An 'Anti-Discrimination Bill Because It Prohibits Governmental Discrimination Against Christians'

For years, Bryan Fischer has made his case that discrimination against gay people is entirely justified and necessary, so it is no surprise that he is a vocal supporter of the new Indiana law that grants business owners the right to discriminate against gays, among others, under the guise of protecting the free exercise of religion.

So passionate is Fischer's defense of the new law that he went so far as to declare on his radio program today that the law does actually not sanction discrimination against gays but merely protects Christians from discrimination.

"This law is not something that provides for discrimination against gays," he said. "It is something that prevents discrimination against Christians ... This thing is an anti-discrimination bill because it prohibits governmental discrimination against Christians in the state of Indiana."

Fischer went on to declare that gay rights activists are seeking to utterly destroy religious freedom in America, saying that outrage over the law is entirely about "homosexual supremacy."

"Homosexual activists want special rights for homosexuals to trump every other single right that any American possess anywhere, at any time, in any place," he said.

So a law passed in order to give religious business owners a special legal right to discriminate against gay customers is, in Fischer's warped worldview, really an anti-discrimination bill need to protect Christian business owners from having to give gay customers "special rights" by treating them equally:

GOP Rep Agrees With Frank Gaffney That Obama Has 'Affinity' For Terrorists, Muslim Congressman Could Be National Security Risk

Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kansas, agreed with Frank Gaffney yesterday when Gaffney speculated that President Obama might have an “affinity for” radical Islam.

Pompeo, who took part in Gaffney’s recent right-wing alternative to President Obama’s summit on violent extremism, told Gaffney in an interview on “Secure Freedom Radio” yesterday that what he saw as the president’s insufficient focus on Islam at the summit made the “bad guys” think they have a “license to move about the cabin quickly, vigorously and with force, and [they'll] meet no resistance”

Gaffney had a different interpretation, wondering whether the president was conveying “kind of an affinity for, if not the violent beheading and crucifixions and slaying of Christians and all that, but at least for the cause for which these guys are engaged in such activities.”

Pompeo agreed, saying, “Frank, every place you stare at the president’s policies and statements, you see what you just described.”

“Every policy of this administration has treated America as if we are the problem, and not the solution to keeping not only America safe, but a stable world,” he added.

Later in the program, Gaffney asked Pompeo about his new campaign to oust Democratic Rep. André Carson of Indiana, one of two Muslim members of Congress, from the House Intelligence Committee because he thinks he’s part of an “Islamic Fifth Column.”

Gaffney asked Pompeo if, as a fellow member of the Intelligence Committee, he is concerned about what he thinks are Carson’s “very, very longstanding and apparently deep personal ties to Muslim Brotherhood operatives and organizations.”

Pompeo didn’t directly answer the question about Carson, instead agreeing that “there are organizations and networks here in the United States tied to radical Islam in deep and fundamental ways.”

“The efforts to expand the caliphate are not limited to the physical geography of the Middle East or other places where there are large Muslim majorities, and we should be concerned that every member of Congress understands that in the same way, such that we can do the things we need to do to keep us all safe,” Pompeo added.

“So I’m always concerned when there’s risk, counterintelligence risk, risk of influence that could take place, so we all as members of Congress who have a constitutional obligation have a duty to make sure that we all live to that standard.”

Gaffney responded with an “amen,” adding: “There is this stealthy, civilization jihad of the Muslim Brotherhood which includes penetration and subversion and, as they call it, destroying us from within by our own hands.”

Anti-Gay Groups Take Out Two Pro-Equality Indiana GOP State Reps

Two incumbent Republican state representatives in Indiana lost primary elections after national anti-gay groups targeted them for their votes against a state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

Kathy Heuer and Rebecca Kubacki were among eleven Republicans who voted against the marriage amendment in January. The amendment will next have to be placed on the statewide ballot, which won't happen until 2016 at the earliest .

According to the National Organization for Marriage, NOM, the American Family Association of Indiana, Focus on the Family’s political arm Citizenlink, the Family Research Council and the FRC’s Indiana affiliate the Indiana Family Institute were all involved in the effort to unseat the pro-marriage lawmakers. NOM writes:

NOM, the Indiana Family Institute, the American Family Association of Indiana, Citizenlink, and Family Research Council Action had warned politicians before the marriage amendment vote in the legislature that if they did not give the people the chance to vote on marriage this year, there would be political repercussions. After the failure of the legislature to pass the question to the voters, the coalition worked together to choose its targets, particularly the ousting of Heuer and Kubacki while protecting marriage champions. 

The Indianapolis Star reports that the Indiana Family Institute’s political arm "ran $12,000 worth of radio ads in the Fort Wayne area targeting Heuer, Kubacki, and a third incumbent, Casey Cox of Fort Wayne,” who won his primary contest. The FRC-affiliated group also reportedly sent out 10,000 mailers in support of the marriage amendment’s sponsor in his successful effort to fend off a primary challenger.

In February, NOM and Citizenlink started airing radio ads against at least one Republican state lawmaker who ultimately voted for the marriage amendment, but supported a change that would remove a ban on civil unions from the measure, thus pushing back the schedule for getting the ban on the ballot. The groups accused proponents of the change of bringing “San Francisco-style marriage” to Indiana.

In a statement, FRC president Tony Perkins touted his organization’s recent poll on how Republican voters view marriage equality and claimed that “elected officials can no longer avoid the reality that the redefinition of marriage leads to the loss of our most basic freedoms.”

"The election outcome reinforces the findings of an FRC-commissioned survey released last month showing three-quarters of Republican voters want their elected officials to uphold natural marriage as the national standard. Voters in Indiana and across the country are now realizing that much more than marriage is on the line. Elected officials can no longer avoid the reality that the redefinition of marriage leads to the loss of our most basic freedoms.

"Redefining natural marriage is about far more than the marriage altar; it is about fundamentally altering society. In the wake of same-sex marriage, religious freedom and parental rights have been lost. Business owners, like florists, bakers and photographers, have been hauled into court, fined and even put out of business for simply refusing to participate in a same-sex wedding. But it doesn't stop there; university professors, sportscasters and even members of the military have been demoted or fired for simply believing marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Families have been impacted as parents have lost the right to determine whose values are taught to their children," concluded Perkins.

Indiana Marriage Equality Opponents Kick Off Campaign With Ominous Ads

The first TV ads have hit the airwaves in Indiana’s debate over putting a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage on the ballot.

The two ads, which the Indiana-based group Advance America says it is paying “several thousand dollars” to air, play ominous music over a picture of the state capitol in front of cloudy skies. One shows the members of state committee considering the ballot measure. In the other, the words “freedom” and “right to vote” float across the screen as actors say “let me vote.”

“You Deserve the Right to Vote…to Protect Marriage in Indiana!” the ad concludes.

Advance America is the same group that has been distributing flyers warning that marriage equality will result in the imprisonment of pastors and lead the state to “legalize ‘gender identity.’”

'Choice' School Accountability in the Eye of the Beholder – or Big Donor

Right-wing political strategists have invested huge sums in recent decades to undermine public support for public schools.

Mefferd: Gay Rights Should Not 'Trump the Rights of Christians' to Not See Gays (UPDATED)

Conservative talk show host Janet Mefferd this week waded into the controversy about an Indiana high school where a group of students wanted to organize a separate prom that would specifically prevent gay and lesbian students from attending.

After lamenting that “public schools are morally bankrupt,” Mefferd asserted that proms which allow all students — gay or straight — to attend actually violate the rights of Christian students who disapprove of homosexuality.

What right in particular, you might ask?

According to Mefferd, apparently the right of students not to even see gay people!

She maintained that the students’ desire not to see gay students outweighs the rights of gay students to attend their own prom.

“Why should the rights of the [gay] activists trump the rights of Christians” who don’t want “to see that,” Mefferd asked.

Mefferd: Everything is so upside down in our society now and right and wrong have completely switched where what is really wrong is to say you shouldn’t have two boys allowed to go to the high school prom. Now we can get into a big issue of the public schools are morally bankrupt at this point and we all ought to exit and just let them, let them do their thing, and that may be the ultimate answer; on the other hand, I feel for these Christian kids who are in a prom or kids who are at this high school who say, ‘you know something, do we have to go down this road?’ Whether the homosexual activists like it or not, and I know this isn’t politically correct to say this, but not everybody wants to see that. I know that that’s offensive to the activist crowd, they want us all to see it, they want us all to approve of it, they want us all to call it blessed and okay and rejoice and have parties and throw confetti in the air over this whole thing. But the fact of the matter is it’s a moral issue. You will always have Christians who will disagree with this and why should the rights of the activists trump the rights of Christians?

Update 2/20: Mefferd spent a good part of the weekend tweeting at us, and a good portion of her show yesterday railing against us, claiming that we had "libeled" her with this post. Today, we received a letter [PDF] from her attorneys demanding that we remove this post and asserting that even though we had quoted her verbatim, we had misrepresented her views.

According to this letter, Mefferd claims that she was merely saying that some people object to seeing gay couples at prom, not that Christians have a right not to see gay people in general:

Ms. Mefferd’s comment, in discussing a controversy in an Indiana high school about attendance by homosexual couples at a high school prom, was that ‘not everybody wants to see that.’ (emphasis added). Ms. Mefferd was not making a statement about homosexual people, or any other people for that matter, when making that statement, as Ms. Mefferd would have said ‘not everybody wants to see them.’ Mefferd’s statement was about the inclusion of homosexual couples at a high school prom, and made a factual statement that ‘not everybody wants to see that.’

What’s the difference you ask? Good question. We stand by our original post and think that the audio clip we posted speaks for itself.

Former Rep. Hostettler Laments Church’s Extraction from Government, Agrees Schools are Hiding Truth about the Constitution

Former Indiana Rep. John Hostettler lamented yesterday that the “church has extracted itself from government,” creating a vacuum filled by “those adversarial to biblical truth.”

Hostettler, talking with Truth in Action Ministries’ Carmen Pate on the organization’s radio program, agreed with Pate that the education system is controlled by “those who really don’t want our kids to understand what the Constitution has to say” – namely, as Hostettler, puts it, that “government is an institution that is not just a God-centered one, but it was ordained by God.”

Hostettler represented southwest Indiana in Congress from 1995 through 2007, and is now president of the Constitution Institute, which dedicates itself to providing state legislators and others with “a greater understanding of the United States Constitution.”

Pate: You know, it seems to me, Congressman, it’s very clear that the founding fathers intended for the government’s role to be limited, and they based this Constitution on biblical principles and truths. Yet we know that those on the left, the secular humanists, see the importance of a big government, not limited, because then they can wield more power over the people.

Not to sound conspiratorial here, but I wonder if there have been attempts perhaps by those secular humanists, those on the left, to really not allow or to take away some of the opportunities for learning more about what the Constitution has to say. Say in our public schools, you mentioned in school you didn’t learn all these things. I didn’t either. It wasn’t until I got out of school and started working with pro-family organizations that I really dug into the Constitution.

Have we allowed the education of our children to be given over to those who really don’t want our kids to understand what the Constitution has to say?

Hostettler: Well, Carmen, you’re exactly right. That is what has happened. Because the church has extracted itself from government and we have fundamentally forgotten, as Dr. Kennedy taught, that government is an institution ordained by God. Just as the family was ordained by God, and just as the church was ordained by God, government is an institution that is not just a God-centered one, but it was ordained by God.

So we have extracted ourselves from it – the church, the body of Christ has – we’ve handed it over to others, and we’ve forgotten that just has nature abhors a vacuum, politics and public policy and government likewise abhor a vacuum. Someone is going to occupy that space, some philosophy is going to occupy that space. And it’s either going to be fundamentally a philosophy that is sympathetic and is agreeable to biblical truths, or it is a philosophy that is adversarial to biblical truth. It’s going to be one of the two. And as you pointed out, it has been a philosophy overall that is adversarial to biblical truth.
 

Palin To Liberty University

After bowing out of the presidential campaign, Sarah Palin will now keynote a conference at Liberty University for a Christian women’s conference. Palin, the professional Fox News commentator and speaker, previously headlined events for anti-abortion groups including one gathering with Planned Parenthood smear artist Lila Rose:

A sell-out crowd of over 10,000 women are expected to pack the Liberty University Vines Center and Thomas Road Baptist Church facilities this weekend, October 7-8, for the annual Central Virginia Extraordinary Women (EW) Conference, with special featured guest Governor Sarah Palin! Thousands of women will also be joining live via simulcast at churches all over America and Canada.

"This is shaping up to be one of the most electrifying and meaningful conferences we have ever had," said Julie Clinton, EW Host and President.

An explosive national Christian women's movement, EW exists "To help women draw closer to the heart of God" everyday. The 2011 Extraordinary Women "Everlasting Hope" tour also includes New York Times best-selling authors Lysa TerKeurst and Donna VanLiere, and noted Bible teachers Jennifer Rothschild and Carol Kent, along with inspiring music from awarding-winning Christian artists, Michael O'Brien, Meredith Andrews, Jeremy Camp, and Female Vocalist of the Year, Francesca Battistelli. Filled with times of praise and worship, biblical teaching and entertainment, "This conference is our way to encourage and inspire the hearts of women," Clinton said.

The pace only picks up for the Extraordinary Women movement (www.ewomen.net), with events planned for later this fall in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Tupelo Mississippi, and Rockford, Illinois. Thirteen more major arena events are already slated and planned for 2012.

Indiana Republican Congressmen Use Taxpayer Money For FRC Training

Roll Call reports today that four Republican congressmen sent staffers to the Indiana Family Institute with funding from their congressional office accounts. “The April payments of $500 from Indiana GOP Reps. Larry Bucshon, Dan Burton and Todd Young and $1,000 from Rep. Todd Rokita to the Indiana Family Institute stand out because it is rare for Congressional offices to make direct payments to political organization,” Paul Singer writes, adding that “the Members also offer their time to the IFI for the training sessions.”

The Indiana Family Institute is the state affiliate of the Family Research Council, and led the push the defund Planned Parenthood in Indiana and for the legislature to place a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage on the ballot. The group also claimed it successfully defeated an anti-bullying bill because it would “allow homosexual activists to silence free speech.”

According to its manual Ignite: An Enduring Cultural Transformation, the IFI describes its political goals of fighting the “radical liberal agenda” and training leaders “grounded in a biblical worldview”:

You see, Indiana Family Institute (IFI) is unique. Strategically, IFI works at the state level to unite a coalition of allied national and local organizations. Operationally, IFI works effectively in all three areas – education, legislative, accountability – required to truly transform the culture. Philosophically, IFI works on a wide range of culture-defining issues. Organizationally, IFI works to engage churches, pastors, and their members in their government. God has blessed IFI with the unique opportunity to be a catalyst for cultural transformation.



Cultural transformation begins with leadership. Leadership of all ages and backgrounds. Leadership grounded in a biblical worldview. Leadership armed with the information and skills to influence others. IFI’s educational programs work to identify, train, and activate these leaders across Indiana both in the home and the public square.

IFI’s political goals include: Pass the Marriage Amendment. Pass a bill to stop tax dollars from going to Planned Parenthood, Indiana’s largest abortion provider. Oppose Indiana Equality, Planned Parenthood, ACLU, etc. efforts to push their radical liberal agenda.



IFI’s legislative programs provide a strong and respected voice for values in the legislature.

In the last several years alone, IFI has actively engaged on numerous critical pieces of legislation. By God’s grace and thanks to the generous support of loyal donors, IFI was successful in many of those battles – including working to pass the Marriage Amendment through the Indiana House once and the Indiana Senate five times (though former House Speaker Pat Bauer ultimately stopped it from being placed on the ballot) and defeating multiple bills by Indiana Equality, Planned Parenthood and other radical leftist groups that would have diminished religious liberty, used the government as a tool to promote homosexuality and expanded abortion in Indiana.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • I don't see how anything Liberty University says here in any way changes the fact that the school is one of the leading recipients of federal aid in the form of student loans.
  • FRC reports that Michele Bachmann has been confirmed as a speaker at the next Values Voter Summit.
  • I almost want to see Michele Bachmann become president just to watch her try and fulfill her promise to get gasoline under $2 a gallon.
  • Finally, the fact that one of Bachmann's staffers was arrested for terrorism in Uganda seems like it might be a big deal.
  • Liberty Counsel says schools ought to be able to block websites for gay organizations because they are just trying to "force school to be purveyors of their immorality."
  • Finally, it seems that members of the band Sugarland were saved from the Indiana State Fair stage collapse tragedy by their prayer circle.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • It looks like Tim Pawlenty will also sign the National Organization for Marriage's pledge.
  • Speaking of NOM, they are unsurprisingly not impressed with the American Psychological Association's support for marriage equality.
  • Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison's hatred of Gov. Rick Perry continues, as she announces she won't endorse him for president.
  • Apparently, praying at Gov. Perry's prayer rally is just like being Indiana Jones.
  • Finally, is there any anti-gay activist more obsessed with gay sex than Peter LaBarbera?

Yet Another Example of David Barton's False History

Last week David Barton bought his patented brand of psuedo-history to the pulpit to the First Baptist Church of Woodstock, Georgia where he unveiled a new "fact" that we had never heard from him before.

While discussing Black history, Barton asserted that Indiana's "Hoosier" nickname derived from itinerant Black preacher Harry Hoosier:

Harry Hoosier was one of the great evangelists in the First Great Awakening ... but we never heard of Harry Hoosier. By the way, look at his last name. Does that last name seem familiar to anybody? Anybody recognize the name "Hoosier" anywhere? I wonder how many people who live in Indiana know that they're named for a Black evangelist. But that's where the name came from because of the impact he had in his preaching all across that part of the country. You got converted, your life became different, you changed your lifestyle, they'd look as say "oh, that's another one of those Hoosiers."

Of course, that is David Barton's version of history.  The Indiana Historical Society has rather different explanation:

It’s safe to conclude the Hoosher and Hoosier nickname adopted by Indiana residents and for them by their nearby neighbors was derived from the dialect term (probably traceable from England) not uncommon among southern immigrants to Indiana and the Ohio Valley several years before [John] Finley arrived and penned his famous poem [The Hoosier’s Nest].

Although the term implied a frontier roughness just beyond the most recently settled and “civilized” regions (which of course were always moving west), its subsequent widespread acceptance in the 1830s and 1840s was definitely good-natured, if not independent-minded, in meaning then and thereafter.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Governors Mitch Daniels and Nathan Deal will not be attending Rick Perry's prayer rally.
  • Randall Terry has moved his based of operations to a compound out in West Virginia.
  • Someone should really investigate how much money, if any, these right-wing activists make off of these "fax your lawmaker" campaigns.
  • ABC changed the name of "Good Christian Bitches" to "Good Christian Belles," but Gary Cass is still opposed because the show is "bigoted attack [and] demeaning to all Christian women."
  • Finally, Bryan Fischer isn't going to let the fact that he actually approves of this ruling get in the way of attacking gays.

At Ralph Reed Confab, Obama Portrayed as Enemy of Faith and Freedom

Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition gathering in Washington, D.C. this past weekend was essentially a relentless repetition of the GOP’s 2012 attack themes on the Obama administration, mixed with Religious Right leaders’ demands that the Tea Party not abandon social conservatives’ priorities and conservative politicos’ appeals for unity behind whichever candidate emerges from the presidential crowd.  Just about everyone running, or thinking about running, for the presidency on the Republican side was in attendance with the exception of Newt Gingrich.

One of the easiest, and most frequently used, ways to get applause at F&F was to pledge that Obama will be a one-term president.  Among the other major themes:
 
American Exceptionalism
 
Former Senator Rick Santorum, who officially announced his presidential bid this morning, said his campaign theme will be American exceptionalism.  Unfortunately, for Santorum, it seems that every Republican candidate is talking about American exceptionalism – and the claim that President Obama, Democrats, and “liberal elites” don’t believe that the U.S. is the God-ordained greatest nation in the history of the world – so it’s going to be hard to break away from the pack on that score.  Gary Bauer claimed that American elites don’t believe the words of the Declaration of Independence. 
 
‘Obamacare’ = Socialism = The End of Freedom
 
Many speakers cited health care reform as the ultimate example of the Democrats’ commitment to freedom-destroying socialism.  Carrie Severino of the Judicial Crisis Network said it was one example of progressives’ tendency to say “to hell with the Constitution” when it got in the way of their policy goals.  Rep. Allen West even attacked the notion of “shared sacrifice,” which he said was code for “redistribution of wealth,” which is how the right-wing looks at progressive taxation.  Rep. Tom Price, who clearly needs to spend some time studying American history, called the health care reform bill “the furthest reach of oppression that this society has ever seen.”  Others similarly insisted that the implementation of the law would mean the end of liberty in America.  Michele Bachman shouted, “I will not rest until we repeal Obamacare. America will not rest until we repeal Obamacare.”  Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli said the fight against Obamacare is just one sign that federalism is reemerging.  He argued that Americans need to understand that there is a “liberty pie” that does not grow – and it has only two slices, government power and individual liberty – and one necessarily grows at the expense of the other. 
 
America Needs More Religion (as long as it’s not Islam)
 
The FFC was long on Religious Right rhetoric on religion and politics.  The pastor who gave the opening prayer for the conference gave thanks for “a nation founded for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith.”  The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins exulted that it was good to be among folks who are “not ashamed to defend the Christian principles on which this nation was founded.”  The Republican National Committee’s Reince Priebus said America’s greatness is “rooted in our faith” and that “faith in our God, and faith in our savior” is “not a convenience, it is the foundation of a good life.” But Islam was clearly deemed a threat, with one participant telling a contentiouspanel on Sharia law that in Minnesota “we practically have a Muslim state.”  
 
Reproductive Rights and Gay Rights = Big Government
 
In the “Social Issues: Why They Still Matter” panel, John Fund of the Wall Street Journal discussed “the psychology of those who are trying to undermine the moral fiber of this country,” arguing that liberals are compelled by a lust for power and therefore need to “control people” and “lower standards of society as a whole.” Fund explained that “if you can lower standards” by permitting legal abortion and gay equality, then liberals can gain control over society, and insisted that “we have to bring back shaming” of women who had abortions because “we need to be judgmental about this issue, we need to call out people for the choices that they made, ‘shaming’ is not a bad word in this society.” On a separate panel, National Organization for Marriage founder Maggie Gallagher said, “When you redefine marriage, you also redefine the relationship between Genesis and the American tradition,” which would jeopardize freedom because “in some cases, the power of government is already being used to marginalize and stigmatize people who disagree with the foundational ideas of same-sex marriage.”
 
Obama as Enemy of Israel
 
Michele Bachman was one of several speakers who misportrayed recent Obama administration comments about Israel, calling them a “shocking display of betraying our greatest friend and ally.” One participant commented that “life, liberty, and Israel” were the elements that make up “the pursuit of happiness.” Jay Sekulow of the American Center for Law and Justice said Obama may soon be referring to Israel as “the Zionist regime” and Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission implied that Obama may bringing upon the country the curse of God for his policy towards Israel. Peter Roff of U.S. News and World Report lamented that “the American Jewish community is for some reason enamored of Democratic politicians in general and Barack Obama specifically.”
 
Unified Conservative Movement
 
FRC’s Perkins was among many Religious Right speakers who argued for keeping social conservatives’ priorities at the forefront of the movement in the name of conservative movement unity.  Perkins used a strange mixed metaphor, saying it is the “bottom of the ninth for our beloved country” and no time to lapse into an undisciplined orchestra, calling for a “rousing symphony” – drums of national defense, the horns of economic abundance, and the strings that bind a strong family.  Among others who sounded the same theme were Indiana gubernatorial candidate Mike Pence, who said, “we have to recognize that our present crisis is not just economic or political but moral in nature” and touted the importance of the sanctity of life, “traditional marriage,” and the importance of organized religion in our daily life.
 
Haley Barbour, one of the potential presidential candidates who decided not to run, devoted his remarks to lecturing attendees about the need to rally behind whichever candidate was nominated even though the nominee won’t be perfect.  “In politics,” he said, “purity is the enemy of victory.” Tony Blankley warned that the media and Democrats would love to “divide and conquer” the movement.
 
Advocating for social issues at the FFC was clearly preaching to the choir.  But some Tea Party activists were clearly annoyed by the “you’re nothing without us” attitude of Religious Right activists Jordan Sekulow and Matt Barber at a panel on the “Teavangelicals” that was moderated by the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Joseph Farah says "Newt Gingrich is a liberal."
  • Micah Clark, executive director of the American Family Association of Indiana, says Mitch Daniels "has a bit of a weakness on the homosexual demands."
  • Phyllis Schlafly gets worked up over the strangest things.
  • Mitt Romney hires Mark DeMoss.
  • From the latest FRC prayer update: "May Tennessee enact this bill to prevent ENDA-like ordinances! May Congress do so likewise, if the President dares to circumvent Congress by issuing an ENDA-like Executive Order!"
  • Finally, quote of the day from Gingrich spokesman Rick Tyler: "The literati sent out their minions to do their bidding. Washington cannot tolerate threats from outsiders who might disrupt their comfortable world. The firefight started when the cowardly sensed weakness. They fired timidly at first, then the sheep not wanting to be dropped from the establishment’s cocktail party invite list unloaded their entire clip, firing without taking aim their distortions and falsehoods. Now they are left exposed by their bylines and handles. But surely they had killed him off. This is the way it always worked. A lesser person could not have survived the first few minutes of the onslaught. But out of the billowing smoke and dust of tweets and trivia emerged Gingrich, once again ready to lead those who won’t be intimated by the political elite and are ready to take on the challenges America faces."
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