Texas

Engle Leads The Right Into Houston

It seems as if Lou Engle has now become a full-fledged Religious Right leader whose gatherings are now regularly attended by everyone from Tony Perkins and Richard Land to Star Parker and Harry Jackson:

A coalition of pro-life advocates and religious leaders plan to gather in Houston on Jan. 18 to oppose what is expected to be the largest abortion clinic in the country.

Planned Parenthood is renovating a former bank, turning it into a 78,000 square foot facility that will include a surgical wing equipped to provide late-term abortions.

“It’s an abortion super center,” Lou Engle, founder of the pro-life group The Call to Conscience, which is organizing the rally, told CNSNews.com.

Joining Engle at the “prayer march” will be Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, and Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. Religious leaders expected to attend include Bishop Harry Jackson, senior pastor of Hope Christian Church; Richard Land, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention; Star Parker, president of the Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education; and Abby Johnson, the former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic.

Engle compared the fight for the rights of the unborn to another critical movement in America. “As Martin Luther King, Jr. said, ‘It is time to subpoena the conscience of America,’” he said.

Here is Engle's latest video and the announcement on his website:

Houston We Have A Problem

The Second largest abortion clinic in the world is being built at this present moment in Houston, Texas. This six-story Planned Parenthood abortion “super center” is right in the middle of four (4) “super neighborhoods.” Three average to 85% Latino in population and the other is 85% African American. Planned Parenthood is targeting these minority pro-family communities, both for their finances and the restriction of their populations. But, there is a voice rising out of Houston and out of Texas, declaring, “We don’t want this death camp specializing in late-term abortions in our neighborhoods!”

On Martin Luther King Jr.’s holiday, January 18th, 2010, thousands are gathering to march against this Goliath to pray, fast, and peacefully siege this massive injustice in the spirit of that great liberator Martin Luther King Jr. Key African American, Latino, and political leaders are coming to speak and hold a nationwide press conference challenging this “super center.” This is a great hour for the Hispanic pro-LIFE people, Catholic and Evangelical, to raise their voices against abortion and for adoption. Public opinion over abortion is shifting radically in America to pro-LIFE at the same time this facility is exalting itself above the humble and oppressed.

We are entering into the 37th anniversary of the “Roe V. Wade” abortion decree of 1973 on January 22, 2010. We are in a ’73/’37 window to reverse that decree. It started in Texas, now let it begin to reverse there. We are calling for the pro-LIFE people of Houston, Texas, and America to gather Sunday night, January 17th, 2010 for four (4) hours of prayer for spiritual awakening and justice, from 6:00pm to 10:00pm at Grace Community Church. On this evening, 1/17, we will be unifying with one voice before God to pray for the Luke 1:17 answer to the killing of our babies and the wounding of our women – “And he will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the rebellious to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

On January 18th, at 9:00am on Martin Luther King Jr.’s holiday, we will gather by the thousands to launch a silent prayer march through the streets to the abortion “super center” for the nationwide press conference and prayer stand. As Martin Luther King Jr. would proclaim it – It is time to “subpoena the conscience” of the nation from the flashpoint of Houston, Texas. Maybe Houston could become the Birmingham of our day to let the unborn go free and spare the pregnant mother the agony of guilt. Maybe out of Houston a great demonstration of compassion could be launched through pregnant mother care with a mass movement of adoption. Martin Luther King Jr. cried, “I have a dream”. Alveda King, the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., has eloquently stated, “How can the dream live as long as we kill our children?” God has a dream. He has a dream for America and He has a dream for every mother and every child and a six-story massive abortion facility has never been a part of that dream. Lets end the nightmare and let the dream live.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • In times of trouble, remind me not to turn to Brit Hume..
  • Rick Warren needed $900,000 in end-of-the-year donations and got $2.4 million instead.
  • The New York Times examines the role that three American anti-gay activists played in the creation of Uganda's death penalty for gays effort.
  • Apparently, Oklahoma Republicans are going to attempt to "opt-out" of federal hate crimes laws. Good luck with that.
  • The Washington Monthly explains how David Barton, Don McLeroy, and other Texas conservatives are rewriting your kids’ textbooks.
  • You know, if GOProud has a problem with WorldNetDaily's reporting, they ought to take it up with WND, not Good As You.
  • Finally, I never fail to be amazed at the sort of outrageous things conservatives can get away with saying.

Bauer: Only a Backlash Against Muslims Can Stop Terrorism

Writing in The Weekly Standard, Gary Bauer complains that the lack of a "backlash" against Muslims in America is leading to more terrorist attacks:

It has been more than a month since U.S. Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan allegedly murdered 14 people and wounded 30 others at Fort Hood military base in Texas. And while we were led to believe that the rampage by Hasan, who is Muslim, would provoke a strong and violent reaction against Arab and Muslim Americans, a backlash has been conspicuous only by its absence.

In fact, in the immediate aftermath of each of the dozen attacks by Muslim Americans since 9-11, the conversation has been dominated by predictions of inevitable violence toward Muslims by bigoted Americans unable to control their rage. And each time a backlash has been virtually nonexistent. Our journalistic and political elites have become terrorism's unwitting domestic enablers, perceiving religion-based violence where there is none, while ignoring it where it is widespread and intensifying.

...

A Rasmussen poll immediately after the Fort Hood massacre found that a majority of Americans were at least somewhat concerned that the shooting would prompt a backlash against Muslims in the military. They needn't have been concerned. Since 9-11, every Muslim terrorist attack on American soil has been followed not by a violent backlash, but by outreach and conciliation toward Muslim Americans. And then by more attacks--by radical Islamists. Instead of fretting about a nonexistent backlash against Muslims, perhaps we should be examining more closely what is happening on radical Islamic websites and in some U.S. prisons, mosques, and Islamic schools that is causing increasing numbers of young American Muslims to embrace jihad against their neighbors.

Apparently, Bauer thinks that America needs a backlash against Muslims if we want to stop terrorism, since the lack of any such backlash is what is leading to more attacks.

He's "Doctor" Barton Now?

A few months ago we wrote a post about Wallbuilders' David Barton seemingly suggesting that he was a "professor" despite the fact that his academic credentials consist entirely of a "B.A. from Oral Roberts University and an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Pensacola Christian College."

Now Bob Vander Plaats, the Republican candidate for governor in Iowa, is touting the fact that he received Barton's endorsement with an announcement containing a link to a radio interview with "Dr. Barton":

Nationally known author and political activist David Barton has endorsed Sioux City Republican Bob Vander Plaats in the 2010 Iowa gubernatorial race.

"I’m incredibly excited to have David’s backing because he has such a deep base of supporters across our state. I know several candidates and potential candidates have sought his support because he commands tremendous respect and attention. Having him in our corner will be another crucial tool to motivate and mobilize grassroots Iowans next year," Vander Plaats said.

Barton was recognized by Time magazine in 2005 as "One of the 25 Most Influential Evangelicals" in the United States. He is the founder and president of the Aledo, Texas-based group WallBuilders, an organization which presents "America's forgotten history and heroes, with an emphasis on the moral, religious, and constitutional foundation on which America was built."

"Bob Vander Plaats epitomizes the leadership our Founding Fathers envisioned when they stood up for our individual liberties," Barton said in a prepared statement. "He knows that it’s the hard work and unfettered creative spirit of individuals made this country and states like Iowa great. He knows that more bureaucracies, more government employees, higher taxes and increased government spending will crush Iowa. And, he’ll articulate that message in winning fashion."

A former vice chairman of the Texas Republican Party and a consultant to the Republican National Committee on outreach to evangelical voters, Barton has been praised by U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback for providing "the philosophical underpinning for a lot of the Republican effort in the country today."

Barton, who speaks to well over 400 groups each year across the country, is the author of numerous best-selling books. His subjects are drawn largely from his massive library of tens of thousands of original writings from the Founding Era. His exhaustive research has led to recognition as an expert in historical and constitutional issues. As a result, he serves as a consultant to state and federal legislators, has participated in several U.S. Supreme Court cases, was involved in the development of the history and social studies standards for states such as Texas and California, and has helped produce history textbooks now used in schools across the nation.

Click here to listen to Dr. Barton’s interview on WHO Radio.

Houston Will Fall Under Judgment For Electing a Gay Mayor

As we reported a few weeks back, anti-gay activists in Texas had mobilized in an effort to defeat gay Houston mayoral candidate Annise Parker but failed.

Via Alan Colmes, we get this story from ABC 13 in Houston of what happened on election night when Eric Story, a supporter of one of Parker's opponents, lead the gathering in prayer and said they could not stand idly by and allow Parker's lifestyle to become accepted and warned that Houston was going to come under God's judgment: 

Last night, Colmes had Story, who is himself running for Congress, on his radio program to defend his position.  Story insisted that Parker had "flaunted" her lifestyle, a lifestyle that is "contrary to God's word."  He went on to insist America is a "Christian nation" and declared that he would "never be accepting of this lifestyle" and that nobody who is gay could ever be a good role model because, again, "it is contrary to God's word."

He likewise defended his statement that when any society becomes supportive of the gay lifestyle, God renders judgment upon it and warned that God would do so to Houston.  Then, for some reason, Story blamed Fox News for the fact that voters in Houston didn't know that Parker was gay.

The interview then got even more bizarre when Colmes quoted Story as saying that "when a city or a state or a nation accepts the homosexual lifestyle, history tells us that destruction follows, that judgment follows" to which Story strenuously objected because Colmes mistakenly quoted him as saying "holy judgment follows."  Apparently the fact that Colmes added "holy" to the quote was greatly offensive to Story, even though Story readily admitted that that is exactly what he meant and exactly what he believes will happen to Houston, which he likened to Sodom and Gomorrah:

Right Wing Round-Up

Anti-Choice Group Slams Hutchison For Missing Meaningless Cloture Vote

Anti-choice activists who have lined up behind Texas Gov. Rick Perry are attacking his primary opponent, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, for missing the cloture vote on David Hamilton's nomination to the Seventh Circuit:

In a new email to supporters, Texas Right to Life opens with a huge picture of pro-life leaders across the state meeting with Perry.

"Pro-lifers trust Gov. Rick Perry," the headline reads. "Senator Hutchison missed the chance to oppose the promotion of the most anti-life judge in the country."

The email refers to the cloture vote on President Barack Obama's nomination of pro-abortion federal judge David Hamilton to serve on a federal appeals court.

...

Texas Right to Life calls the missed vote on cloture "another example why we won't take the chance on human life with Senator Hutchison."

"Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison missed an important pro-life vote, her 24th miss this year," the group explains. "The U.S. Senate took a cloture vote on the nomination of Judge David Hamilton to the Seventh Court of Appeals, and Senator Hutchison missed the vote on this rabid pro-abortion activist nominee."

'She was in Houston raising money for her campaign for governor when we needed her to stand against judicial activism and to stand for Life during this vote," the group criticized.

The cloture vote failed by a margin of 70-29, so even if Hutchison had voted against it, it still would have lost by forty votes.

Welch Apologizes For Failing to Defeat The "Enemy" In Houston's Mayoral Race

Dave Welch, executive director of the Houston Area Pastor Council, was deeply involved in the anti-gay campaign run against Houston mayoral candidate Annise Parker:

“The bottom line is that we didn't pick the battle, she did, when she made her agenda and sexual preference a central part of her campaign,” said Dave Welch, executive director of the Houston Area Pastor Council, numbering more than 200 senior pastors in the Greater Houston area. “National gay and lesbian activists see this as a historic opportunity. The reality is that's because they're promoting an agenda which we believe to be contrary to the concerns of the community and destructive to the family.”

Welch said he had “no doubt” there would be numerous independent advocacy efforts urging voters not to choose Parker, most of which would involve mail.

But their effort failed and Parker won the election over the weekend ... and for that, Welch feels it is necessary to apologize to America for failing to stop the "enemy" from taking control:

I have to first of all ask forgiveness of the rest of the country on behalf of those in Houston who were entrusted with choosing godly leaders and failed to do so. As I have stated often, the first responders in that line are the churches who profess Christianity and adherence to the Bible as our authority. We let our position on the wall be breached by the enemy.

Now to the business of learning from our mistakes and failures – and it was a failure of the church as well as the Republican Party in Houston, in that order. There are some essential lessons that this provides, as all elections do, and those lessons are universal to every city and state.

...

I believe the questions of the hour for pastors in every city are as follows:

1. Does it matter to God who governs us?

2. Does it matter if the laws of our land conform to or violate God's standards of justice?

3. Do we as Christians have personal and corporate responsibility
for choosing godly leaders?

4. Are we willing to call out and equip men of ability, reputation, character, integrity and proven faith to serve in governing positions?

5. Are we willing to establish a clear, bold and unquestioned priority of voting consistently and biblically for every voter in our churches?

Our recipe for transformation is simple, but will cost us the same as our ancestors of faith and country – everything.

Scarborough Jumps Into Houston Mayoral Race With Anti-Gay Email

The other day we noted how Houston mayoral candidate Annise Parker was coming under attack from right wing anti-gay activists, among them Steve Hotze, who was a backer of Mike Huckabee's presidential campaign.

Now it looks like other Huckabee supporters are getting in on the act as well. As Towleroad reports, Rick Scarbrough of Vision America has sent out this email to Texas activists warning that Parker and others want "to recruit children to their lifestyle"::

Houston is facing the most critical city elections in its history. As a minister of the Gospel and a concerned former citizen of Houston, whose children and grandchildren live there, I am writing this letter to warn you of the devastating consequences which may occur if you overlook the threat which the December 12th runoff elections pose for the city of Houston. You will have two choices when you vote.

The Houston Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgendered (GLBT) Political Caucus has fielded a slate of endorsed candidates in the City of Houston Runoff Elections. They are searching the city for votes for their candidates and if successful, Houston will become increasingly like the city of San Francisco.

The Houston Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgendered (GLBT) Political Caucus Slate

Mayor – Annise Parker
City Controller – Ron Green

City Council Races:
District A – Lane Lewis
District F – Mike Laster
At Large Position 1 – Karen Derr
At Large Position 2 – Sue Lovell
At Large Position 5 – Jolanda Jones
HISD School Board Position 1 – Alma Lara
HISD School Board Position 9 – Adrian Collins

Money is pouring in from homosexual groups around the country who want Houston to become the San Francisco of the South.

The Homosexual Agenda

1. Legalize same sex marriage.

2. Mandate public acceptance of the homosexual activities.

3. Teach homosexuality to school children, starting in kindergarten, as an acceptable, alternative lifestyle. This is known as multisexualism. This enables homosexuals to recruit children to their lifestyle.

4. Lower or remove age of consent laws leading to relaxation of laws prohibiting pedophilia. See www.nambla.org /

5. Elevate homosexuals to a minority class, leading to affirmative action for homosexuals in the workplace. Cross dressers could force employers to accept their actions at work.

6. Prohibit any speech which opposes homosexual activity. This would be considered “hate speech” and have criminal sanctions. This would destroy 1st Amendment free speech rights for those who oppose homosexual conduct and the homosexual political movement.

7. Require employee benefits to be provided to same sex partners.

8. Elect candidates to office who will work to implement the homosexual agenda.

If you DO NOT support the homosexual agenda and do not want Houston to become another San Francisco, then please consider voting for the following candidates:

Recommended Slate of Candidates

Mayor – Gene Locke
City Controller – M.J. Khan

City Council Races:
District A – Brenda Stardig
District F – Al Hoang
At Large Position 1 – Stephen C. Costello
At Large Position 2 – Andrew C. Burks, Jr.
At Large Position 5 – Jack Christie
HISD School Board Position 1 – Anna Eastman
HISD School Board Position 9 – Lawrence Marshall

If people who hold to traditional values neglect to vote in this election, the results will be far reaching. The above list of candidates is not perfect by any measure, but I strongly recommend them over the alternative. This election illustrates like few others why good men and women must stay engaged as concerned citizens.

“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” – Edmund Burke

Please forward this to your family and friends on your e-mail distribution lists.

Respectfully,

Dr. Rick Scarborough
President of Vision America Action

Huckabee Supporter Behind Anti-Gay Attacks In Texas

Last month, openly gay Houston mayoral candidate Annise Parker was targeted by an anti-gay activist who 35,000 copies distributed a mailing picturing Parker and her partner under the headline "Is This The Image Houston Wants To Portray?"

Now, according to the Houston Chronicle, Parker's opponent's campaign has been bankrolling efforts to attack her over her sexuality:

The finance chairman and a finance committee member of Gene Locke's mayoral campaign helped bankroll the conservative political action committee that sent out an anti-gay mailer targeting City Controller Annise Parker and other municipal candidates earlier this month, according to Texas Ethics Commission documents.

...

Locke has been dogged by Parker, her supporters and some uncommitted Democrats for seeking the endorsement of conservative activist Steven Hotze, who has a long history of opposing gay candidates and causes. A mail piece Hotze sent out last week urged voters not to choose Parker and several others seeking municipal offices because they were “endorsed by gay lesbian political action committee,” a reference to Houston's Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Political Caucus. It labeled others as “radical liberals” and supported some candidates based on a record of fiscal conservatism.

According to financial documents, Hotze's political action committee received a $20,000 donation about a week before the mail pieces went out from Ned Holmes, finance chairman of Locke's campaign, and $20,000 from James Dannenbaum, who is on Locke's finance committee.

Hotze's PAC, Conservative Republicans of Harris County, lists $56,000 in donations between Oct. 25 and Dec. 2. Only two other donors, who contributed a total of $16,000, are listed.

You may remember Hotze from this post we wrote a few years ago when he held a fundraiser for Mike Huckabee during his presidential campaign in which we chronicled Hotze's long history of right-wing anti-gay activism and his ties to the Coalition on Revival's Manifesto for the Christian Church back in 1986 which declared:  

• A wife may work outside the home only with her husband's consent

• "Biblical spanking" that results in "temporary or superficial bruises or welts" should not be considered a crime

• No doctor shall provide medical service on the Sabbath

• All disease and disability is caused by the sin of Adam and Eve

• Medical problems are frequently caused by personal sin

• "Increased longevity generally results from obedience to specific Biblical commands"

• Treatment of the "physical body" is not a doctor's highest priority

• Doctors have a priestly calling

• People receiving medical treatment are not immune from divine intervention or demonic forces

• Physicians should preach to their patients because salvation is the key to their health

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Joseph Farah thanks Sarah Palin for taking the Birther issue mainstream.
  • Rick Santorum says he is "absolutely" considering a 2012 presidential run.
  • Republican Party of Texas voted overwhelmingly to place resolution on the March 2010 Primary reading "Sonograms: The Texas Legislature should enact legislation requiring a sonogram be performed and shown to each mother about to undergo a medically unnecessary, elective abortion."
  • The Christian Coalition hails the Manhattan Declaration ... but wonders if the signers really have the commitment to follow through on their pledges.
  • The AFA's Bryan Fischer says it is time to "man up" in the "war against Christmas" because it just may be the "most important" battle of them all.
  • Finally, I have no idea what on earth this ad is supposed to mean:

"Americans are Being Terrorized into Banishing Christmas"

Earlier this week, I wrote a post about the Liberty Counsel freaking out over this ad campaign from the American Humanist Association:

Liberty called the campaign a "temper tantrum" ... but the only ones throwing a temper tantrum are those on the Right, as the Texas Freedom Network points out by highlighting this statement from In God We Trust:

The national advocacy group In God We Trust today condemned efforts of national atheist organizations and left-wing legal groups aimed at terrorizing Americans into not celebrating Christmas.

“Americans have become accustomed to the whining and calls for censorship of anti-religion activists during the Christmas season,” says In God We Trust’s Chairman Bishop Council Nedd. “However, this year opponents of the holiday are escalating their ‘War on Christmas’ to a whole new level. Their goal is harass, mock and scare people into censoring themselves and hiding their Christmas celebrations.”

“Americans are being terrorized into banishing Christmas from public life,” Nedd warns. “The hate and venom spewing from some of these anti-religious groups is so great that some jurisdictions are tearing down even secular Christmas displays as fast as they can.”

And of course, Bill Donohue of the Catholic League is weighing in as well, blaming mean-spirited secular elitists for ruining Christmas ... and urging people to sue: 

Disputes about Christmas displays, he charged, are “contrived by elitists of a secular mindset.” They are “bringing forth every possible secular holiday that might fall in December and trying to give it equal billing with Christmas.”

According to Donohue, many Jews will acknowledge that Hanukkah is a minor holiday. He added that the Hindus he knows celebrate Christmas as part of being Americans.

“Now in the workplace, in the schools, we have to be ever-conscious of offending people who are not Christians,” he charged.

Donohue blamed this situation on the “language police” and diversity consultants, whom he claimed to be part of a $1 billion industry active in the private and public workplace.

“These people are the ones selling the propaganda that non-Christians are offended by Christian symbols in December. There is no evidence to this,” he said, reporting that about 96 percent of Americans do not object to Christmas displays or greetings.

He blamed Christmas disputes on “a very small percentage of mean-spirited people year after year.”

He suggested Catholics respond to the suppression of Christmas displays by filing lawsuits or showing up at town hall meetings and school board meetings when the displays become an issue.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • The RNC's communications director abruptly resigned because Michael Steele didn’t feel he was getting enough credit for the GOP’s electoral success earlier this month. He's being replaced by Alex Castellanos, who will apparently be able to maintain his seat at CNN.
  • Lilly Folwer has a good piece in Salon on Wiley Drake and the whole Psalm 109 effort.
  • Doug Hoffman un-un-concedes.
  • Wendy Wright was apparently doing a little more than "simply praying" when she was arrested back in the early 1990's.
  • TPM exlains to Rep. Michele Bachmann why Democrats oppose her, since she apparently doesn't understand.
  • Finally, the Texas Freedom Network points out that United States Justice Foundation wants people to protest healthcare legislation by refusing to buy health insurance and is offering to represent anyone in court who does so.  As Dan says: "Oh, goodie. But will the USFJ also pay for treatment if that uninsured patriot gets cancer or is crippled in an auto accident?"

David Barton's Right-Hand Man Seeks Seat on TX Supreme Court

The Dallas Morning News' Trail Blazers blog reports that Rick Green, currently David Barton's right hand man at Wallbuilders, has announced that he's running for a seat on the Texas Supreme Court:

Former state Rep. Rick Green, a staunch social conservative and Republican who drew criticism for ethical lapses while in the Legislature, is announcing this evening for Texas Supreme Court. According to his Web site, Green is unveiling his candidacy at a 6:30 p.m. rally in Kyle, near San Marcos.

While in the House from 1998 to 2002, Green drew fire for using his Capitol office as the backdrop for a health supplement infomercial. He also came under scrutiny for successfully arguing before the parole board for early release of a man convicted of defrauding investors (who just happened to have loaned $400,000 to Green's father's company); allegedly pressuring the state health department on behalf of ephedrine maker Metabolife International, one of his law firm's clients; and squeezing lobbyists to pony up at a fundraiser for a private foundation he started. He made Texas Monthly's list of the 10 worst legislators.

Green, who always denied any wrongdoing, cast himself as a fighter for traditional values. He still does, calling himself "a true Reagan conservative and strict constructionist."

...

Green, R-Dripping Springs, was defeated in 2002 by Democrat Patrick Rose.

Their spirited and at times almost physical battle for the swing district seat in the Texas Hill Country was chronicled in "Last Man Standing: Politics, Texas Style," a documentary by filmmaker Paul Stekler. And the hard feelings didn't end there: In November 2006, Green was accused of assaulting Rose on election day at a polling place.

Green, a lawyer, has worked with the Aledo-based group WallBuilders, whose founder David Barton says the Founding Fathers did not intend for there to be a formal separation of church and state.

Right Wing Law Prof Challenged on Deceptive Anti-Marriage Testimony

Among those who testified against marriage equality legislation before the Council of the District of Columbia was Washington & Lee University Law Professor Robin Fretwell Wilson.  Wilson is also a member of the Virginia Marriage Commission, which is affiliated with the Family Foundation of Virginia, a Religious Right group.

Councilmember David Catania has written Prof. Wilson a hard-hitting letter challenging her "blatant mischaracterization" and misapplication of previous court cases.  Wilson said that court cases had required that police officers be allowed to claim religious exemption to avoid having to defend a casino or an abortion clinic, but according to Catania's letter, she got the cases absolutely wrong.
 
Catania pulled no punches:
 
I am further concerned that your misrepresentations may not have been accidental or inadvertent. Rather, your purported legal analysis and ethical judgment appear to be clouded by your political agenda. You are a member of the Virginia Marriage Commission, an organ of the Family Foundation of Virginia. The Family Foundation's stated goal is to promote the ideal that marriage "is the union between one man and one woman, [and] is an institution of God and a foundation of civil society." One of your colleagues at the Foundation is Maggie Gallagher, one of this country's most virulent opponents of marriage equality. The Foundation's partners include other well known right-wing organizations including the Family Research Council, Focus on the Family, and the Alliance Defense Fund. In addition to opposing marriage equality, the Foundation opposes embryonic stem cell research, opposes the use of emergency contraceptives, and promotes the defunding of Planned Parenthood. Your failure to disclose your involvement with this organization, combined with your blatant misrepresentations before the Council, leads me to question the independence of your analysis.
 
Ouch!
 
Wilson’s uber-lame response, as reported by the Washington Post’s DC Wire was to call Catania’s letter “kind of nasty” and to say “it’s possible I misstated something.”
 
You think? She may have some other opportunities to defend her flawed testimony. Here’s how Catania’s letter ends.
 
 In closing, I am concerned about the ethical implications of your behavior and strongly caution you to consider your professional obligations of competency and candor. The democratic process depends upon an honest dialogue and open disclosure. As a professor of law, you should know better.
 
And, as DC Wire notes, Catania did not restrict his letter to Wilson herself:
 
To make his point, Catania sent a copy of his letter to Robert A. Smolla, the president of Washington & Lee, and Rodney A. Smolla, the dean of the law school. He also copied the letter to the Chief Disciplinary Council for the State Bar of Texas, where Wilson is licensed to practice law.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Karl Frisch: So, what really happened to Lou Dobbs?
  • What do you know? Sean Hannity actually apologized after getting caught lying.
  • Think Progress: Rick Perry Caters To The Far Right: Obama Is ‘Interested In Punishing Texas’ And ‘Hellbent’ On Socialism.
  • Alan Colmes: Colorado GOP State Senator Compares Obama To 9/11 Hijackers.
  • Sarah Posner: Why Don’t Churches Have to Disclose Lobbying Activities?
  • Americans United: D.C. Officials Should Reject Church Threat Over Tax Funding.
  • Finally, the Family Research Council says it would be open to the idea of supporting a primary challenger to Sen. Olympia Snowe.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • What do Randall Terry and the Phelps clan have in common?  They both protest Obama's daughters' school.
  • Gary Bauer says the alleged Fort Hood shooter was a "sleeper agent" while the author of "Muslim Mafia" says now is the time for a "backlash" against Muslims.
  • In Florida, the Tea Party is now officially a political party.
  • Alan Colmes: Scott Roeder Confesses To Killing George Tiller.
  • Raw Story: Palin sees conspiracy in new dollar coins.
  • Think Progress: Oklahomans rally at State Capitol to protest anti-choice law that would post abortion details online.
  • Media Matters: The Washington Times' history of anti-gay rhetoric.
  • Finally, quote of the day from the Texas Freedom Network: “Am I a religious fanatic? Absolutely. You’d have to be to do what I do.” – State Board of Education member Don McLeroy, R-Bryan, talking about how he approaches public education.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Marco Rubio appeared on Janet Porter's radio program yesterday.
  • Sarah Palin really does have control issues.
  • Tony Perkins goes all Glenn Beck as he explains that healthcare reform is literally a "bailout" for Planned Parenthood.
  • Is the Right really still trying to sink David Hamilton's nomination by claiming he's an ACORN activist? Didn't we already debunk this?
  • It looks like the Christian Twitter is off to a rough start.
  • I can't wait to find out how this ends.
  • Finally, a Texas teacher is in danger of losing her job for refusing to provide her fingerprints, which she won't do because fingerprinting is a mark of the Beast.

Scarborough Exploits Fort Hood Tragedy To Attack Hate Crimes Protections

Earlier this week we noted that Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission was planning a rally to challenge the recently enacted hate crimes law expanding protections for sexual orientation.

It looks like Rick Scarborough of Vision America will be joining him and has decided to announce his participation via an incoherent press release linking the issue the shooting at Fort Hood:

Referring to the man being held in connection with the deaths of 13 people at Fort Hood, Texas yesterday, Scarborough observed: "We know that Dr. Hasan is a devout Muslim who once told a fellow officer that 'Muslims have a right to stand up against the U.S. military.' Clearly, yesterday's rampage was not motivated by love. Given Hasan's worldview, it's probable that he was motivated in part by an animus toward Christians and Jews. Assuming that murder charges are brought against him, will Hasan also be charged with a hate crime?"

Scarborough said this highlights the absurdity of hate crimes laws. "If convicted, Hasan could face life in prison or the death penalty. Fanatics are not deterred by the prospect of an additional penalty for hating."

Scarborough predicted that the expansion of the federal Hate-Crimes statute, signed into law by President Obama recently, will not prevent crimes like the Fort Hood shootings, but will instead be used to silence dissent.

"Gay activists will use it against preachers who present the Biblical view of homosexuality. Muslim groups will use it against those who speak the verifiable truth about Islam. The federal Hate Crimes Law doesn't target crime, but free speech," Scarborough charged.

Scarborough said Hasan's case also illustrates an entrenched double standard, noting that the Army psychiatrist had received poor fitness reports for proselytizing his patients for Islam. "If a Christian doctor witnessed for Jesus to his patients, I can guarantee he would have been discharged from the United States Army in a New York minute," Scarborough stated.

Rev. Scarborough will lead a demonstration of pastors and other clergy in Washington, D.C., on November 16, where they will preach the Gospel and hold a press conference enumerating their objections to the recently passed Federal Hate Crimes Law. Will the U.S. Attorney General prosecute them for violating the expanded Hate Crimes law?

Oklahoma Prison to Be Run By Christians, For Christians

Reading through this article about a proposed Christian prison in Oklahoma, I kept thinking to myself that there has got to be some Religious Right involvement in this ... and lo and behold there is, as Pat Robertson's ACLJ has already agreed to defend it against any constitutional challenges:

A 150-acre site on the edge Wakita has been selected, and an agreement has been reached with Corrections Concepts Inc. to manage the 600-bed prison if and when it is built ... [Bill] Robinson said the $42 million project would be financed with bonds.

A bond underwriting company said that if a government jurisdiction will commit to sending 310 inmates at a cost of $42.80 a day, bond sales can begin, and the project can proceed.

...

Robinson, himself an ex-con and prison minister, said he had been working for years on the idea of an all-Christian prison, and he had invested $1.3 million so far on construction plans and other expenses.

He said a lot of prisons have faith-based or Christian units, but he knows of none with an all-Christian staff.

"The staff, being all born-again believers, will see this as a mission," he said.

"I want people to understand what it's about. It's about changing criminals into citizens."

The prison would accept only men near the end of their sentences who volunteer to come into the prison and sign an agreement to participate.

They would work full time at private industries that operate inside the prison, get job training, and earn money.

The money would go to support their families, pay restitution to their victims, contribute to their own room and board, and produce a nest egg they can take when they leave prison.

Classes in literacy, General Educational Development requirements and life skills would be offered, and Wayland University, a Christian college in Plainview, Texas, has agreed to put a satellite campus in the prison.

"They don't have to go to church, or Bible study, but they have to participate in the curriculum, which is Christ-centered," Robinson said.

He possesses legal opinions that say that as a religious organization, the prison will be able to hire only people of like faith, he said.

If constitutional challenges arise, he said, the American Center for Law and Justice, a major Christian law firm, has agreed to represent the ministry for free.

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