Religious Freedom

Land Resigns From "Mosque Discrimination" Coalition After Being Accused of Promoting Islam

Richard Land has been among the most vocal Religious Right opponents of the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque." Apparently concerned that his opposition was blatantly hypocritical, Land eventually signed on to the Anti-Defamation League's "Interfaith Coalition on Mosques" stating that while he opposed the location of the "Ground Zero Mosque" he believed it was important to "help preserve the First Amendment for all Americans" by ensuring that all people "have the right to the free exercise of our faith without the interference of the government."

If Land's stance of vociferously opposing the construction of a mosque near Ground Zero while supporting the construction of mosques places like California, Wisconsin, and Tennessee seemed rather confusing to you, you were not alone - it was apparently confusing to Southern Baptists as well, and their opposition to Land's "promotion" of Islam has caused him to resign from the ADL's coalition:

Richard Land announced January 21 he had listened to Southern Baptists and as a result was withdrawing his name from a diverse coalition established to monitor “mosque discrimination” in the U.S.

"While many Southern Baptists share my deep commitment to religious freedom and the right of Muslims to have places of worship, they also feel that a Southern Baptist denominational leader filing suit to allow individual mosques to be built is 'a bridge too far,'" wrote Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, in a letter to the Anti-Defamation League, which established the coalition

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Admitting he was surprised at some of the reaction from fellow Southern Baptists, he explained most of the negative responses at a minimum affirmed "everyone’s right to worship," but drew the line at "denominational leaders filing suit in court to protect those rights when Muslims are the aggrieved party."

Land said his involvement with the interfaith coalition was perceived by many as "crossing the line from defense of religious freedom to advocacy of, or promotion of, Islam itself."

Wendy Wright: There’s No Discrimination in America, Except for that Committed by “Homosexual Activists”

Wendy Wright, the president of Concerned Women For America, in the conservative publication The American Thinker ridicules the Obama Administration’s claims that bigotry and inequality still exist in the U.S., but goes on to claim that the Religious Right represents the actual victim of discrimination at the hands of “homosexual activists.” Such fatuous allegations are nothing new from Wright, who participated in the “Green Dragon” series that believes the environmental movement is surreptitiously trying to destroy Christianity and dismissed a study which showed that the children of same-sex parents are as “well adjusted” as their peers because it didn’t conform to her anti-gay prejudice.

In her article, “What Obama Thinks of America,” Wright is incensed that the Obama Administration still believes that discrimination survives in the U.S. and facetiously asks “Which American laws or institutions enshrine discrimination?” However, she then blasts the Obama Administration for not confronting the “homosexual activists” who are leading “a campaign of harassment, threats, vandalism, and attacks on employment against people who support traditional marriage, with particular venom toward religious people.” Essentially, Wright and the CWA strongly endorse discriminatory laws and bigoted views that target gay and lesbian Americans, but in her opinion proponents of anti-gay bigotry like herself are the real victims of intolerance:

Sometimes the best way to find out what a person thinks about you is to find out what he tells others.

That's why the report on America's human rights record filed by the Obama administration with the U.N. is particularly interesting.



What comes through is that President Obama's crew thinks America is congenitally discriminatory, and his administration is bravely soldiering into this morass against the unwashed masses to create an equal society.

As the report states, "[w]ork remains to meet our goal of ensuring equality before the law for all." Which American laws or institutions enshrine discrimination? Not mentioned. No matter -- when you're convinced that Americans are bigots, there is no need to provide proof.

The administration crows in the report about passing the incredibly divisive and unconstitutional health care act. It devotes a section to the bill, with glowing aspirations of how it will end the discrimination of a racist medical system. (Remember, these people see everything through the filter of race or identity politics -- even health care.)

Yet religious freedom (in which the U.S. excels in contrast to other countries) gets a few measly paragraphs with boilerplate generalities. Whereas the health care bill earned details like how many Asian-American men suffer from stomach cancer, the examples of a defense of religious freedom were a Native American primary school student's right to wear his hair in a braid and a Muslim girl's right to wear a hijab.

Maybe this administration is not keen on religious freedom. The issue is so old-school...yesterday's news...Christian. And it inconveniently conflicts with one of President Obama's priorities highlighted in the report, a priority that threatens religious freedom -- privileges for those who engage in homosexual, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender behavior.

Homosexual activists conducted a campaign of harassment, threats, vandalism, and attacks on employment against people who support traditional marriage -- with particular venom toward religious people. The vile assaults on Carrie Prejean for merely expressing her views pulled away the curtain that had been hiding how homosexual activists routinely treat decent people who dissent. It raised the question: Who is the aggressor, and who is victim?

Did you get that? "In each era of our history" -- that is, America is historically and inherently bigoted. Makes you wonder why they'd want to live here.

LGBT advocates (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) claim that sexual orientation is an inborn identity, like skin color or ethnicity, and they excoriate people who use the term "gay lifestyle" because it implies choices and actions. Yet the report's first boast of tackling discrimination against this group was the striking down of a law criminalizing sodomy. Apparently, particular actions do define homosexuality.

Wright goes on to argue that the Justice Department intentionally lost the Massachusetts cases challenging the constitutionality of the Defense Of Marriage Act, a charge which Focus on the Family thinks deserves a congressional investigation by Darrell Issa, and that any move towards equality for gays and lesbians actually represents prejudice:

Remember, since he ran for president, Obama has claimed that he does not upport same-sex "marriage." Yet he opposes the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the clearest federal statute that protects marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

Obama's Justice Department sabotaged its defense of DOMA in a legal challenge, making such weak arguments that it guaranteed a loss. And he opposed California's Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman. So Obama opposes federal and state measures that define and enforce traditional marriage.

That's where the report to the U.N. really gets interesting. It states, "Debate continues over equal rights to marriage for LGBT Americans at the federal and state levels, and several states have reformed their laws to provide for same-sex marriages, civil unions, or domestic partnerships."



President Obama is, as he said in his inaugural address, remaking America. Too bad his image of America -- and what he wants to turn us into -- is so prejudiced.

IRD Slams State Department for Backing Gay Rights Abroad

Writing for the American Spectator, Jeff Walton of the Institute on Religion and Democracy condemned the State Department for advancing the rights of gays and lesbians abroad. The IRD is a far-right group with a two-pronged strategy to advance its opposition to gay rights: dividing and decrying churches, particularly Mainline Protestant denominations, which favor LGBT equality, while at the same time aiding and promoting groups in Africa and the U.S. that attack gays and even support the criminalization of homosexuality. Most recently, the IRD vilified a North Carolina church group for electing an openly gay layman as the President. In addition to the group’s militant stance on gay rights, the IRD also works against the rights of women and immigrants, and criticizes the environmental movement, and the IRD has ties to major right wing organizations like the Heritage Foundation, Concerned Women For America, Numbers USA, and the American Enterprise Institute.

Walton, the Communications Manager for the IRD who previously alleged that the Episcopal Church could be held responsible for the deaths of Christians abroad because it allows gays and lesbians to serve as Bishops, now is taking to the ultraconservative Spectator to reproach the State Department for “promoting homosexuality overseas.” He blasts Secretary Hillary Clinton for allegedly wanting to “legitimize homosexual practices in those socially traditional countries,” like those in Africa, and maintains that efforts to protect gays from discrimination are affronts to “religious freedom.” Walton denounces the State Department’s work to document anti-gay laws and violence, and the pressure it puts on countries like Uganda to improve the rights of gays:

Although the language of some U.S. officials begins with the legitimate concern for personal safety and freedom from the threat of violence, it often ends by demanding acceptance of homosexual acts as a human right.

"We've come such a far distance in our own country, but there are still so many who need the outreach, need the mentoring, need the support, to stand up and be who they are, and then think about people in so many countries where it just seems impossible," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said during a speech in June as part of "Pride Month" celebrations at the U.S. State Department.

At the event, which was organized by the group "Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies," Clinton said the State Department is supporting efforts to advance homosexual rights around the world. "We celebrate the progress of advancing the rights of LGBT [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender] in our country, as we continue to advance the rights of all people around the world," Clinton gushed before the receptive audience, adding that the "struggle for equality is never, ever finished."



During her June address, Clinton stated that her department has formalized reporting on homosexual rights for the first time in the 2009 annual human rights report that was issued in February on every country in the world. But the top U.S. diplomat quickly honed in on Africa, saying that U.S. embassies there had been directed to ask their host government about the status of LGBT rights. A special panel discussion on LGBT rights in Africa was also held later in the day.

He goes on to rebuke Assistant Secretary of State Michael H. Posner, openly gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson, and Bishop Christopher Senyonjo, an Anglican Bishop who worked in Ugana to improve the livelihoods of marginalized gay Ugandans and diligently opposed a bill in Uganda’s Parliament that “would make homosexuality illegal, in some cases punishable by death.” Walton says:

In March, Posner introduced the State Department human rights report to Congress, emphasizing what was termed a growing crisis in abuse directed against LGBT people worldwide, and urging the use of diplomacy to counter the alleged trend.

In introducing the report, Posner singled out the case of Uganda, where he alleged that introduction of anti-homosexuality legislation has resulted in abuse. The report further documents LGBT-related incidents in almost every country in the world.

Posner's report met agreement with Robinson and Senyonjo during their conversation at CAP.

“[The] time is coming when we should not work on just one bill, but towards decriminalization," Senyonjo said, adding that he was "very grateful for voices all over the world that work against oppression."

"It is wrong to say, 'Don't interfere, it's a domestic thing,'" the former Anglican bishop said. He compared foreigners working for decriminalization of homosexuality in Africa to aid workers providing earthquake relief in Haiti.



In that commissioning, Senyonjo seems to have found a partner in the U.S. State Department. For them, seemingly sexual freedom is more important than religious freedom. Look for more developments in 2011.

Walton never explains how defending gays from violence and discrimination undermines “religious freedom,” and dismisses Bishop Senyonjo’s religiously-grounded defense of LGBT equality. Just as the IRD demonized many US churches who worked in social justice and anti-apartheid activism in South Africa because they also supported rights for gays and lesbians, Walton and the IRD are criticizing the State Department for working to document and prevent the persecution and oppression of gays outside of the U.S.

Reaction to DADT Vote: "The Few, the Proud, the Sexually Twisted"

Today, the Senate voted 63-33 to invoke cloture and bring the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell to a final vote later today.  With repeal of DADT all but a foregone conclusion, the Religious Right has begun releasing statements which we are going to chronicle here as they come it.

And judging by the early statements from the likes of Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association, this vote is literally going to mean the end of America:

We are now stuck with sexual deviants serving openly in the U.S. military because of turncoat Republican senators ... Had the cloture vote failed, we would still have sane moral and sexual standards governing military personnel policy. But sadly those days are gone, perhaps forever.

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The armies of other nations have allowed gays to serve openly in the military. The reason they could afford to do this is simple: they could allow homosexuals to serve in their military because we didn’t allow them to serve in ours.

They knew they could count on the strength, might, power, and cohesion of the U.S. military to intervene whenever and wherever necessary to pull their fannies out of the fire and squash the forces of tyranny wherever they raised their ugly heads around the world.

Those days are now gone. We will no longer be able to bail out these other emasculated armies because ours will now be feminized and neutered beyond repair, and there is no one left to bail us out. We have been permanently weakened as a military and as a nation by these misguided and treasonous Republican senators, and the world is now a more dangerous place for us all.

It’s past time for a litmus test for Republican candidates. This debacle shows what happens when party leaders are careless about the allegiance of candidates to the fundamental conservative principles expressed in the party’s own platform.

Character-driven officers and chaplains will eventually be forced out of the military en masse, potential recruits will stay away in droves, and re-enlistments will eventually drop like a rock.

The draft will return with a vengeance and out of necessity. What young man wants to voluntarily join an outfit that will force him to shower naked with males who have a sexual interest in him and just might molest him while he sleeps in his bunk?

This isn’t a game, and the military should never be used, as is now being done, for massive social re-engineering. The new Marine motto: “The Few, the Proud, the Sexually Twisted.” Good luck selling that to strong young males who would otherwise love to defend their country. What virile young man wants to serve in a military like that?

If the president and the Democrats wanted to purposely weaken and eventually destroy the United States of America, they could not have picked a more efficient strategy to make it happen.

Rarely can you point to a moment in time when a nation consigned itself to the scrap heap of history. Today, when the Senate normalized sexual perversion in the military, was that moment for the United States. If historians want a fixed marker pointing to the instant the United States sealed its own demise, they just found it.

Family Research Council:

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins issued the following statement following the vote:

"Today is a tragic day for our armed forces. The American military exists for only one purpose - to fight and win wars. Yet it has now been hijacked and turned into a tool for imposing on the country a radical social agenda. This may advance the cause of reshaping social attitudes regarding human sexuality, but it will only do harm to the military's ability to fulfill its mission.

"It is shameful that the Democratic leadership, aided by Republican Senators, has forced through such a radical change in a lame-duck session of Congress. The 1993 law which is to be repealed was adopted only after months of debate and at least a dozen Congressional hearings. The repeal has been forced through only eighteen days after the Pentagon released a massive report, which raised more questions than it answered on the impact the overturning of this policy will have on our nation's military.

"It is clear why this was done: not to enhance the military's ability to accomplish its mission or to enhance national security. Rather, it is a political payoff to a tiny, but loud and wealthy, part of the Democratic base. They knew that the Congress elected last month would never adopt such legislation - certainly not without a more thoughtful and deliberative process.

"We thank Senators John McCain, James Inhofe, Jeff Sessions and Jim DeMint, as well as all of those who voted to support our troops over advancing a liberal social agenda. These senators fought hard for our men and women in uniform, and their efforts will not be forgotten."

Peter LaBarbera:

Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans For Truth About Homosexuality, which opposes the “gay” activist agenda, said today’s vote, potentially clearing the way for repealing the military ban, is the most important homosexuality-related congressional vote ever held: “If the lame-duck Congress succeeds in ‘gaying down’ our military this weekend, it will take a disastrous leap toward “mainstreaming” deviant, sinful homosexual conduct – not just in the military but in larger society — thus further propelling America’s moral downward spiral.

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Americans are tired of religious phoneys like [Sen. Joseph] Lieberman – politicians who use their religion as a PR prop while actively undermining its moral dictates. Claiming to be an “observant” Jew, Lieberman wears his religion on his sleeve (perhaps he will walk, not drive, on the Jewish Sabbath Day today to cast his pro-homosexuality vote!). Stealing the moral authority of “civil rights” is the only way Lieberman can rationalize his role as a crusader for the ‘Gay’ Lobby on Capitol Hill — when His religion, a form of Orthodox Judaism, condemns homosexual acts as an “abomination”

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Said Brian Camenker, founder of the pro-family group Mass Resistance, who attends an Orthodox synagogue in the Boston area:

“Sen. Joseph Lieberman, who has the incredible chutzpah to call himself an Orthodox Jew, will desecrate the holy Sabbath to go to work – the U.S. Senate – and vote to force the integration of homosexuality into the U.S. military. He is a shameful disgrace and an embarrassment to Orthodox Jews everywhere.”

Freedom Federation:

Mathew Staver, on behalf the Freedom Federation, made the following statement in response to the Senate’s vote to repeal Section 654, Title 10, U.S.C. (1993), which is usually mislabeled by the subsequent Executive policy known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT): "Our armed forces should take heart, because the American people will not turn its back on you. This vote happened because opportunistic Senators – only days before Christmas – put political interest groups above supporting our men and women in uniform."

Staver continued, "This action will be overturned in the next Congress because it breaks the bond of trust that must exist between the military and those who command in the Pentagon and Congress. Today’s vote will prove as costly to its proponents as ObamaCare was to its advocates. We promise a full mobilization of faith-based and policy organizations, veterans, and military families in the states of every Senator who voted for repeal of DADT against the advice of our service chiefs and during a time of war. Those Senators – and the Pentagon leaders responsible for this breach of trust – should understand that they will be the object of concerted political action against them."

MassResistance:

The U.S. military took its first step on the sexual slippery slope when it admitted women to the military academies in the mid-1970s. Later, women began serving on the frontlines (just one way Bill Clinton ensured the decline of our once proud military and kowtowed to the radical feminists). The denial of reality—that there was no new element of sexual tension acting as a distraction from discipline—began then.

The incorporation of women at least involved normal sexuality. And if a woman became pregnant, she would be discharged. Still, enormous damage has been done.

Now, with the repeal of the ban on homosexuals serving openly, we will see increased tensions, this time with an unnatural and perverted sexuality endangering discipline—and it will be more pervasive in the daily life of a soldier. Where men and women are at least segregated in their housing, bathrooms, etc., this will not be the case with homosexuals.

What a betrayal by our new Senator Brown to vote for the repeal of this important element of discipline. But then, he probably doesn’t have a problem showering no matter who is ogling him:

 Gordon Klingenschmitt:

"A chaplain friend of mine asked God this week, 'why do you allow evil to grow in America, and open homosexuality to be forced upon our military?' To which God answered him from Psalm 92:7: 'When the wicked spring as the grass, and when all the workers of iniquity do flourish; it is so that they shall be destroyed forever.'

"Homosexual sin will always be a stench in the nostrils of Almighty God, an abomination which God condemns and shall punish with everlasting destruction. Even if the Senate had voted 100 to 0 to legalize sin, they could not remove God from His throne of Judgment, before which every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.

"I hereby call upon the new Congress to never certify that the military is ready to implement repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and instead pass strong laws protecting the rights of Christian troops (especially chaplains) to openly speak their opinions about what the Bible calls sin, to refuse common showers, sleeping quarters and 'social re-education' without repercussion, guaranteeing religious freedom even outside of chapel services. If free speech and free religion rights of Christian chaplains and troops are not protected, then the military is not ready to certify or implement repeal, and will quickly begin to persecute good people of Christian conscience.

"I also hereby invite my own network of up to 125,000 patriot pastors across America, to whom I have, and shall again fax free voter guides before the November 2012 election, to mobilize Church voters to throw out these 25 pro-homosexual Senators up for re-election in 2 years: Snowe (R-ME), Scott Brown (R-MA), Ensign (R-NV), James Webb (D-VA), Nelson (D-NE), Nelson (D-FL), McCaskill (D-MO), Tester (D-MT), Conrad (D-ND), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Casey (D-PA), Feinstein (D-CA), Carper (D-DE), Akaka (D-HI), Cardin (D-MD), Stabenow (D-MI), Klobuchar (D-MI), Menendez (D-NJ), Bingaman (D-NM), Gillibrand (D-NY), Whitehouse (D-RI), Cantwell (D-WA), Kohl (D-WI), Lieberman (I-CT), Sanders (I-VT)."

Alliance Defense Fund:

The conservative legal group, Alliance Defense Fund, issued a statement after the vote saying "The Senate's cave-in to pressure from activists to impose homosexual behavior on our military will place our troops' religious liberties in unprecedented jeopardy. Indeed, the first official casualty of this hurried vote may well be the religious freedom of chaplains and Service members." ADF Litigation Counsel, Daniel Blomberg, went on to say " no Americans, and especially not our troops, should be forced to abandon their religious beliefs."

The ADF says it stands ready to defend Service members if they are ever unconstitutionally required to choose between "serving their country or obeying their God as a result of this damaging policy decision."

E.W. Jackson:

The unintended consequences on the military are staggering. Does this include transgender and transvestite individuals? What happens if homosexuals are married in one of the states which allow same sex marriage? Will the military recognize those marriages? There are too many unanswered questions.

"What of Christians who believe that homosexuality is sin? Are they to be silenced? Subjected to discipline or discharge? Will they live in close quarters with men or women attracted to the same sex? When homosexuality is given protected status, Christians are muzzled or persecuted for their beliefs, and their First Amendment Rights are trampled. This has happened in corporations all over America. The message is 'be silent or lose your job.' In the military, you cannot merely find another job. If keeping qualified people is the priority, what about the Christians who may be forced to leave the military because the environment is hostile to their faith? The message from Gates and Mullen is, 'Get out.' The repeal of the 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' law is a disaster of historic proportions and it must be reinstated. My organization and others will to fight to make sure that happens."

Traditional Values Coalition:

The attack against our military through the repeal of the 1993 law is an organized campaign against religion, biblical morality, and military culture.

A vote to repeal is an assault against the moral foundations of our society, which is based on Judeo-Christian values. This is only part of the total war that LGBT activists are waging against our culture.

LGBT activists are doing a victory dance over conquering our U.S. military – but this is only a skirmish in a long battle to homosexualize our entire culture. I expect to see an effort down the road to include "transgenders" in the military. That should be an interesting debate.

In addition, LGBT activists are now turning their guns on passage of the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA), which will be a disaster for businesses, charitable groups and Christian organizations. Schools will be forced to hire transgender teachers. They'll also be pushing for repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

One of the new big guns in the LGBT artillery is called Equality Matters, which is a spin-off of the disreputable group known as Media Matters, run by gay activist David Brock. Guess who will be running Equality Matters? Why none other than Richard Socarides, a Fox News contributor and former gay senior advisor on domestic policy for President Clinton.

Equality Matters just launched its web page today and will be a major force in attacking traditional values in the years ahead.

Media Matters is a George Soros front organization designed to smear conservative journalists and to funnel misinformation into the so-called mainstream media. This Soros front currently has a $13 million yearly budget to assault Fox News and other credible news outlets.

All is not lost, however. With Republicans controlling the House in January, it is likely that conservatives will be successful in holding back at least some of the LGBT objectives until we can change Presidents in 2012. If we can elect a strong conservative, we might be able to reverse many of the current victories achieved by Obama and his LGBT friends.

Christian Anti-Defamation Commission:

After a long and difficult fight, the struggle for maintaining the military policy of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” was lost for now. There are some hard truths for those who uphold traditional biblical morality to face. Being able to admit we have a problem is the first step towards making the changes we need to reverse this and other gains made by sexual anarchists and secularists.

The last thing we need to do is surrender biblical moral standards to sexual libertines, as if God’s holy nature has somehow changed with public opinion polls.

Homosexual behavior is intrinsically sinful and we cannot renegotiate God’s moral law. No apologies are necessary for agreeing with Jesus, the Apostles, the Law and the Prophets. History, science, scripture and eternity concur.

Homosexual sin, like every other kind of sin, always results in some kind of death. But sexual sin in general, and homosexual sin in particular, is singled out in the Old and New Testament as particularly deadly. Because of this, the unrepentant person trapped in homosexuality, just like all other sinners, is to be pitied and the object of our compassion.

Spiritually, they are dead to God’s mercy and transforming grace in Christ. Sadly, it was unrepentant homosexual Ellen DeGeneres who emceed the Christmas in Washington TV Show this year with President Obama and family smiling as they blindly celebrated the birth of the Savior. They never saw the incongruence of it all.

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Ultimately, we must resolve that Providence has ordained the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” for now. It could not have happened if God had willed otherwise. But why?

In times like these when our nation defies the moral law of the living God, we must ask, “Is God hardening our heart like he did the defiant Pharaoh?” God did it to show His mighty power in the outpouring of ten plagues on the gods of Egypt and by destroying Pharaoh and his army.

Is God letting America ripen in her rebellion before He wields the mighty sickle of His wrath? It’s worth considering as our nation’s military now serves under a shameful, pink flag.

In the meantime Christian, humbly pray, boldly preach and persevere by the power of the Holy Spirit knowing that God is not mocked and one day His righteousness will prevail.

Richard Land:

"This is a very, very sad day for America," Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, told Baptist Press. "It is an honor and a privilege, not a right, to serve in our nation's military. There are multitudes of reasons why the military is the most respected national institution in American life. I have heard from privates and seamen all the way through generals and admirals that this will cause significant numbers of people to resign from the military -- in the middle of two wars."

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"The reality is that in America today, an all-volunteer military is significantly disproportionately from red-state America," Land said. "And the resignations from the military will be disproportionately from red-state America. So, quite rapidly the military will go from an organization in which homosexuals are underrepresented in ratio to a percentage of the population to an institution where they are overrepresented, which will only accelerate the rate of resignation. Legislators who voted for this disproportionately never served in the military. The opposition was led by legislators who have served."

Concerned Women for America:

"Instead of answering questions about the rights of homosexuals in this country, rescinding DADT only serves to further muddy the waters. Will Christian chaplains be forced out of the military if they don't accept the repeal? Will homosexual partners receive preference over heterosexual families for military family housing? These are just the first of many questions surrounding implementation of this impending law, not to mention how it could severely affect our military personnel. We hoped our Congress would focus on the needs of the military and the protection of the country rather than force through this social engineering experiment during the lame duck Congress on the weekend before Christmas.

"For the social conservatives of this country, a good majority of whom voted in this new Congress, the fight over homosexual rights does not end at DADT. In no way does this repeal usher in an acceptance of same-sex marriage. Voters in 31 out of 31 states have voted to protect marriage as between one man and one woman, including supposedly liberal states such as Maine, Michigan, Oregon and California (twice). In Iowa this past election, three Supreme Court justices were voted out of office for legalizing same-sex marriage over the heads of the voters. When voters are fully informed, they reject the extreme homosexual rights agenda."

Right Wing Leftovers

  • I have to say I am surprised it took WorldNetDaily this long to dust off its "North American Union" conspiracy theory and use it to go after President Obama.
  • FRC says it "plans to launch a nationwide tour getting people all around the country to sign on" to it's SPLC push-back campaign.
  • The Liberty Counsel is "dedicated to advancing religious freedom" and "does not limit its services to Christians, as the rights of Christians are also affected positively by defending the rights of others." Just not Muslims.
  • Focus on the Family continues to milk the outrage over the book "Nickel and Dimed" and its "insults" to Jesus.
  • Finally, this is a quote from James Dobson in 2006 discussing the plan by "homosexual activists and their allies ... to gain control of children": "It was a brilliant plan, hatched in Satan's own lair. Not since Adolf Hitler prepared a generation of German and Austrian youth for war has so grand a strategy been attempted."

Take a Stand With FRC and Those Who Want Homosexuality Criminalized

The Religious Right has been uniformly outraged ever since the Southern Poverty Law Center updated its list of anti-gay hate groups to include the likes of the Family Research Council and the American Family Association.

And today Jeremy Hooper discovered that they intend to do something more than just incessantly complain about it, as FRC is poised to launch a "Start Debating, Stop Hating" campaign designed to rally support for those groups who found themselves "slandered" by the SPLC: 

The surest sign one is losing a debate is to resort to character assassination. The Southern Poverty Law Center, a liberal fundraising machine whose tactics have been condemned by observers across the political spectrum, is doing just that.

The group, which was once known for combating racial bigotry, is now attacking several groups that uphold Judeo-Christian moral views, including marriage as the union of a man and a woman. How does the SPLC attack? By labeling its opponents “hate groups.” No discussion. No consideration of the issues. No engagement. No debate

These type of slanderous tactics have been used against voters who signed petitions and voted for marriage amendments in all thirty states that have considered them, as well as against the millions of Americans who identify with the Tea Party movement. Some on the Left have even impugned the Manhattan Declaration-which upholds the sanctity of life, the value of traditional marriage and the fundamental right of religious freedom-as an anti-gay document and have forced its removal from general communications networks.

This is intolerance pure and simple. Elements of the radical Left are trying to shut down informed discussion of policy issues that are being considered by Congress, legislatures, and the courts. Tell the radical Left it is time to stop spreading hateful rhetoric attacking individuals and organizations merely for expressing ideas with which they disagree. Our debates can and must remain civil - but they must never be suppressed through personal assaults that aim only to malign an opponents character.

You can take action by adding your name to the following statement:

We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family. We support the vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans.

Just let me point out to those thinking of adding their names to this statement that you are declaring your solidarity with people who proclaim that:

DADT: Religious Right Wants Investigation Into Climate of Intimidation at Pentagon

Dozens of Religious Right leaders have come together to sign on to a letter [PDF] released under the Freedom Federation banner calling on the Senate to put off any vote on repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell until the next session of Congress so that there can be investigations into whether the findings of the recent report showing DADT could be repealed with little to no risk was, in fact, the result of a "climate of not-so-subtle intimidation in the Pentagon" that lead to the

It is a serious risk to national security to repeal DADT without first investigating thoroughly – in public hearings – the effect of the proposed repeal. We are engaged in a war on many fronts. Our troops are in harm’s way in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. This is no time to experiment with social engineering of the military.

We are also gravely concerned about the effect that repealing DADT will have on religious freedom. One senior army general, Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, said that those who oppose repeal are guilty of unacceptable attitudes that he reportedly described as “bigotry.” Additionally, expert analysts have warned that a “non-discrimination” policy for sexual minorities will have broad-reaching effects on religious freedom. It is conceivable that chaplains will be forbidden to preach or speak about their denomination’s position on homosexuality.

The Defense Department report on the likely effects of repealing DADT was not released until November 30, 2010. There is simply not enough time between then and adjournment to investigate and deliberate about this very important issue. For that reason, any consideration of repeal should be put off until next year.

Moreover, we are deeply concerned about the methodology of the DOD report and survey. In view of General Bostick’s disturbing comments and Admiral Mullen’s and Secretary of Defense Gates’ unseemly cheerleading on this issue, we believe it behooves the next Congress to investigate whether proponents of repeal tried to create a climate of not-so-subtle intimidation in the Pentagon.

The rush to repeal DADT by January of 2011 is a slap in the face of the American people who are tired of bully politics. Moreover, the consequences of repealing DADT will no doubt result in service members leaving the military or refusing to join. We cannot afford attrition or demoralization of our military in light of the wars we are facing in the Middle East, not to mention the looming threat of North Korea.

Among the names listed on this are:

Sarah Palin
Mat and Anita Staver
Ken Blackwell
Tony Perkins
Penny Nance
Lou Sheldon
Elaine Donnelly
Andrea Lafferty
Samuel Rodriguez
Robert Knight
Harry Jackson
Janet Porter
Cindy Jacobs
Tim Wildmon
Cliff Kincaid
Jim Garlow
Tom Minnery
Gary Bauer
Richard Viguerie
Gary Kreep
Linda Harvey
Joseph Farah
Gary Cass
Rick Joyner
Paul Blair
Don Feder
Kelly Shackelford
James Klingenschmitt
E.W. Jackson
Star Parker
Matt Barber
Dave Welch

UPDATE: Apparently the Sarah Palin signature on this letter was a mistake, as that signature now reads:

Rita Grace
Organizer
Constitutional TEA Party
President
Sarah Palin Republican Women

Bad News For Beck and Barton: The Founding Fathers Were Antichrists

Oh no, Glenn Beck and David Barton have unknowingly been glorifying New World Order-supporting Antichrists with their worshiping of the Founding Fathers: 

While Glenn Beck and David Barton are shouting that conservatives need to take back America, a Christian filmmaker asks the question: take it back to what? A new documentary, "The Hidden Faith of the Founding Fathers" explores what the founders of the American Revolution really believed about Christianity, and the evidence is less than encouraging. If you're a Christian, that is.

The new film is the latest from independent filmmaker, Christian J. Pinto, who is known as the writer/director of the award winning series, "Secret Mysteries of America's Beginnings."

Pinto says, "This newest work really brings together so much of the research we've been unfolding. It shows further how the United States was planned from the beginning to help launch a global society, the New World Order."

When asked what role the founders played in this global agenda, Pinto said, "They set forth the doctrine of religious freedom."

"The doctrine had been designed by the Vatican and the Jesuit Order in England back in 1688," says Pinto. "Their real purpose was to empower the Church of Rome to be in a position to overthrow England. The English Protestants rejected the idea, but Rome manipulated the revolutionaries to write it into the U.S. Constitution."

And this was a bad idea? "Only if you believe the Bible," Pinto says. "Most Christians in our country don't realize that the concept of religious freedom is not biblical. It is not an inalienable right given by God. Nowhere in the Bible does God say that men have the right to worship whatever god they please."

"Religious freedom helped unite America against England, and is today being used by the Vatican to join all the world religions into a united, one world order."

Pinto says the founders not only wanted a universal belief system, but also an end of Bible based Christianity.

"The destruction of the Gospel was the desire of men like Thomas Jefferson, along with John Adams and Thomas Paine," Pinto continues. "By biblical definition, they were antichrists. 

Ironically, if this "documentary" was about people Beck hated instead of the people he idolized, it is probably safe to assume that Beck would eagerly embrace this film and set about booking Christian J. Pinto on his show.

Pray and ACT Prayer Targets: Raise Up Christians, Hold Back Satan, And Keep The Ungodly Out of Office

I have been covering the various election-oriented prayer efforts that are currently being carried out by Religious Right groups, including Pray and ACT which consists of not only 40 days of prayer, but also 40 days of fasting.

And to make this grueling process somewhat easier, Pray and ACT and the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission have produced a day-by-day prayer guide [PDF] for participants.  For instance, on October 17 they are to pray for the "Sanctity of Human Life":

Ask God to...

• Convict public officials to protect and serve every member of our society including the most marginalized, voiceless, and vulnerable

• Raise up leaders to end our nation’s culture of death and recognize the equal value of all people

• Give our nation the compassion it needs to assist women struggling with problem pregnancies

• Raise up leaders to protect the weak and the vulnerable from violent attack with no favoritism, partiality, or discrimination

• Help our world leaders develop a consistent ethic of love and life for all people and all circumstances

• Convict the scientific community to end the barbaric practice of embryo destructive stem-cell research

• Help you put an end to our nation’s abortion-on-demand policies

And the next day they are to pray for "God's Design for Marriage":

Ask God to…

• Raise up leaders who will protect God’s design for marriage as the union of one man and one woman

• Convict Christians to uphold the institution of marriage and model its true meaning

• Help the church instill in young people a sound understanding of the importance of marriage

• Cause our nation to understand the destructive effects of redefining marriage

• Help the church engage in compassionate redemptive ministry to those struggling with same-sex attraction

• Help the church minister to those struggling in their marriages

• Cause our nation’s leaders to enact laws and policies that encourage and strengthen marriage

And then, as we get closer and closer to Election Day, the prayer targets become more focused on getting Christians elected to office, with prayers to "prevent Satan from blinding the judgment of our public officials," and "give Christians who run for public office favor in the eyes of the electorate," and "confound the counsel of candidates who don’t support biblical values," and "discourage ungodly people from running for public office."

And finally, just before Election Day, activists are enouraged to pray for the "wisdom to elect the
best officials" and realize that "God’s judgment or blessing on a nation is related directly to the morality of its citizens": 

Ask God to...

• Send the strong convicting presence of His Spirit throughout the nation

• Raise up leaders who will advance and support God-honoring policies, especially policies protecting life

• Help you know who He wants you to vote for in the upcoming election

• Expose to public scrutiny people who are working to undermine God-honoring laws and morality, like efforts to undermine God’s design for marriage

• Convince Christians that they need to be involved in the life of the nation both politically and socially

• Confound the plans of the enemies of the United States.

• Help the United States continue to be the world’s leader in promoting freedom for all people, especially religious freedom.

Lucky Number Seven: Liberty Counsel Launches Election Prayer Effort

I feel like I keep writing the same post, but so long as Religious Right groups are going to keep launching prayer efforts aimed at the upcoming elections, I am going to keep mentioning them.

As I noted a week ago, there are already six such efforts underway, but now Mat Staver and Liberty Counsel have announced their own effort to save America from all the socialists and communists who are out to destroy it:

Our nation's future is riding on November's midterm elections. Many are calling it the single most important election in decades. Concerned Christian and values voters MUST turn out in record numbers for this election! We simply must reverse the momentum of the radical socialists.

That's why, today, I am announcing the election countdown phase of our "Pray & Vote 2010"campaign that will help restore our nation.

Pray & Vote 2010's goal is to reach FOUR MILLION pro-faith, pro-family, and pro-liberty citizens and fully engage them in this historic election. We believe that four million committed conservative voters could change the course of the election - and our nation!

...

Make no mistake: Our national character will be greatly impacted by the 2010 midterm elections. With so much at stake, Liberty Counsel is calling on members and friends to help re-kindle the spiritual fire in our nation through this powerful Pray & Vote initiative.

In the eyes of the leftist elites who rule the media, education and much of our government, your bold declaration that you will Pray & Vote is radical and unacceptable.

But to our Founding Fathers, combining prayer with political participation was a sacred duty!

By signing up for this "Pray & Vote" campaign, activists are vowing to ... well, pray and vote:

I. PRAY for AMERICA!
I will pray for our nation's leadership.
I will pray for God's guidance in the direction of our country.
I will pray that God restores the biblical pillars that made our nation great:
(1) Leaders who turn to God in prayer; (2) The individual right to exercise religious freedom in all areas of life - free from the attacks of godless organizations and societal pressures of political correctness; and (3) The restoration of our churches and families so they can take their rightful place as pillars of our society.

II. VOTE!
I acknowledge that the right to vote is a right obtained for us by God-fearing forefathers who understood what a privilege and honor it was to bestow that freedom upon our nation's citizenry! Further, I accept voting as my duty as a citizen of the United States of America. I will vote in the November 2010 elections and attempt to assure other like-minded citizens will do the same.

ADF, Keeton Reject KKK Support

This summer, Jennifer Keeton made news when she sued Augusta State University after the school threatened to expel her from its Counselor Education Program if she could not comply with the American Counseling Association's Code of Ethics, which prohibits counselors from discriminating based on a number of factors, including gender identity and sexual orientation. Keeton claimed that this was a violation of her religious freedom to oppose gays and so, with the help of the Alliance Defense Fund, she sued the university.

Yesterday, it was reported that the Ku Klux Klan was going to hold a rally supporting Keeton and today the ADF released a statement making it clear that they do not want the KKK's support:

The Alliance Defense Fund, which is representing Keeton in a federal lawsuit against ASU, issued a news release today saying that both the organization and Keeton are "unequivocally condemning" the KKK's rally.

"Jennifer and ADF are disgusted by the KKK and all it stands for," said ADF senior counsel David French. "To say more than that or to discuss their activities at length risks bringing more attention to a failed organization that is seeking to exploit news stories for its own purposes. As the KKK admits in news reports, Jennifer has had no contact with them, and neither have we. Neither Jennifer nor ADF wish to give the KKK the attention it craves."

Randall Terry Launching Quran-Destroying Campaign Because That Is What Jesus Would Want

When Terry Jones backed down from his plans to burn copies of the Quran on 9/11, Randall Terry stepped up and led a protest outside of the White House where they tore pages out of copies of the Quran because "the charade that Islam is a peaceful religion must end."

Apparently, the event was such a success that Terry and crew are now going to embark upon a Quran-destroying campaign:

On October 6 and 7, Christians (both Catholic and Protestant) will gather in New York, DC, and various cities, holding large posters printed with the words of the Quran, and the words of Muhammad from the Hadith and the Sunnah. The participants will either 1) tear the passages, 2) crumple them up and throw them in a garbage bag, or 3) just laugh at them -- to ridicule the idea that a "Religion of Peace" calls for beheading, murder, crucifixion, etc.

October 7 is the anniversary of The Battle of Lepanto, 1571, in which the Holy League navy defeated the Ottoman Muslim navy. Had the Muslim forces won, Rome would likely have fallen, and St. Peters could very well be a Mosque. (That was the fate of Hagia Sophia in Constantinople.)

"Hear Muhammad Speak" Statement of Goals:

I. To ignite national and world-wide debate/dialogue/education on the anti-Semitic, anti-Christian, and at times violent message of the Quran.

II. To focus national and world wide attention on Muhammad -- his words and deeds that are not in the Quran (i.e., Muhammad's words that are in the Hadith and the Sunnah) -- that call for the murder, beheadings, etc. of Christians and Jews, and the suppression of religious freedom.

III. To highlight the suffering of Christians inflicted by Muslims who follow the example of the words and deeds of Muhammad.

IV. To call on Islamic political and religious leaders to "lay down Muhammad's sword;" i.e., to stop persecuting and killing Christians and Jews, as well as "apostates" who leave Islam.

V. To give historic background on the name "Cordoba," and to urge the halting of the Cordoba Initiative at Ground Zero.

VI. To encourage people to fearlessly defy and expose the Hadith, the Sunnah, and Sharia law while our freedoms still permit it.

In an email to supporters announcing the campaign, Terry explains that they are going to be destroying Qurans because it is what Jesus and Mary would want:

“What would Jesus do?” Maybe He would overturn tables, or chase or hit people with a whip; maybe he would call people names like “whitewashed tombs, or “brood of vipers” or “the sons of hell.” Maybe He would speak the truth, not back down, and even die.

“What would Mary do?” Maybe she would give prayers and urgings like she did at the battle of the gates of Vienna to destroy the Muslim army that sought to annihilate Christianity; maybe she would ask her Son for grace and strength to be given to the soldiers and sailors at the battle of Lepanto to destroy the Muslim Navy, and save Rome and all Christendom from the Muslim hordes.

I give these pictures in the fear of God; Jesus and Mary are not afraid of the truth. Jesus and Mary know that the Church militant should be just that, and that at times words and deeds that are not “politically correct” or “tolerant” must be used in the fight against evil, and the culture of death, and those who seek to destroy Truth and the Church.

Religious Right Thrilled With Its Few Scraps From The GOP

For the last several weeks, Religious Right leaders had been warning Republicans that social issues had better be included in the agenda GOP leaders were going to lay out for the party moving forward.

House leaders have finally released their "Pledge to America," so how did the social conservatives fare

[T]he “Pledge” turned out to have little of substance for the value voters movement.

“We pledge to advance policies that promote greater liberty, wider opportunity, a robust defense, and national economic prosperity. We pledge to honor families, traditional marriage, life, and the private and faith-based organizations that form the core of our American values,” it said in the introduction.

The only specifics that followed in the subsequent 21 pages, however, were a promise to “permanently end taxpayer funding of abortion and codify the Hyde Amendment,” and to pass conscience clauses into law for physicians and medical workers.

So you'd think that the Religious Right would be livid that the GOP so blatantly simply threw them a few superficial bones in order to keep them quite ... but you'd be wrong, because they are overjoyed with the few scraps they received:

“We are pleased that the Republican leadership saw the wisdom of honoring our demand for a clear statement of commitment to life, marriage, and the free and full participation of religious believers and faith-based institutions in our public life.

The American Principles Project, Susan B. Anthony List, American Values and Let Freedom Ring submitted more than 20,000 petitions. Supporters and signers of the Manhattan Declaration made thousands of phone calls. The GOP leadership clearly got the message.

Once again, social conservatives have proven that they are the conscience of the party. They have stood up for the sanctity of human life in all stages and conditions; the dignity of marriage as the union of husband and wife; and religious freedom and the rights of conscience.”

And of course Ralph Reed is declaring victory as well

House Republicans rightly rejected the idea that Tea Party issues like cutting spending and delimiting government are somehow at odds with the pro-family agenda of honoring marriage and unborn life. Nothing could be further from the truth. Pro-family candidates are the most likely to be fiscal conservatives, and Tea Party candidates are the most likely to be pro-life. The agenda embraces time-honored values like traditional marriage and ending taxpayer-funded abortion as well as lower taxes and reduced spending. The message was unmistakable: we will not be divided by a false choice between fiscal responsibility and strong families. We will fight for both, and indeed we must do both if we are to restore America’s promise.

This is absolutely laughable - there is one throwaway mention of marriage and one passing mention of religious liberty in 21-pages of text and yet the Religious Right is acting like it pulled off a major coup.

Fischer: "Homosexuals Are Defined By One Characteristic Only: They Want to Use the Anal Cavity for Sex"

As I said yesterday, so long as the AFA 's Bryan Fischer continues to display his bigotry on a daily basis, I am just going to keep posting it. 

Today he has turned his anti-DADT rant from yesterday's radio program into a blog post in which he praises Sen. John McCain at a "Rock of Gibraltar" for opposing this effort to grant equality to those who "want to use the anal cavity for sex":

Homosexual conduct is deviant sexual conduct. Homosexuals are defined by one characteristic and one characteristic only: they want to use the anal cavity for sex. This kind of sexual conduct is aberrant and carries enormous health risks. It’s so dangerous that the FDA will not allow a male to donate blood if he has engaged in homosexual conduct even one single time since 1977.

To normalize sexual perversion is a mistake in any segment of society, but particularly harmful when done in the military because it will drive values-driven men and women right out of the service, either voluntarily or involuntarily.

Had this vote gone through, it would have meant the end of military careers for every service member, every officer and every chaplain who believes that homosexual behavior is fundamentally unnatural and should be discouraged rather than endorsed.

...

The impact on readiness, retention, and recruitment would have been utterly catastrophic. Character-driven officers, gone. Character-driven service members, gone. Character-driven chaplains, gone. Character-driven recruits, gone.

We would be left with a military comprised of nothing but sexual deviants and those who celebrate sexual deviancy. That is a guaranteed path to a permanently and irreversibly emasculated military that could not defend us if their lives - let alone ours - depended on it ... Every advance of the homosexual agenda comes at the expense of religious freedom. We as a nation must choose between the homosexual agenda and liberty, because we can’t have both. Yesterday the Senate chose well.

Repealing DADT = Denying Spiritual Comfort to Dying Soldiers

I put together this quick video featuring some of the "highlights" from the Family Research Council's anti-DADT repeal press conference, including Harry Jackson warning that "introducing sexual tension and conduct into our barracks" would create a slippery slope toward allowing adultery in the military.  Jackson also claimed that any comparison between discrimination African Americans and gays is "insulting" and a "revision of American history"; a point which was echoed by Aubrey Shines who called any such comparison "asinine." Finally, Austin Nimocks of the Alliance Defense Fund warned that "the agenda of sexual liberty and anarchy does not mix with religious freedom" and asked where you would be willing to deny those serving in the military the "spiritual counsel of their chaplain and of their God as they are looking at death":

Religious Right Demands Inclusion in GOP Agenda

Earlier this year, House Republicans launched a website called "America Speaking Out," which allowed Americans to "share their priorities and ideas for a national policy agenda" that they wanted Congress to focus on.

In a few weeks, House GOP leaders are expected to roll out set of guiding principles and agenda that is based on the suggestions they have received and reportedly distributed a 22-page draft packet to members earlier this month.  And the draft focuses largely on issues related to jobs, spending, health care, and the economy while almost entirely ignoring social issues ... which, of course, is not sitting well with the Religious Right:

Today, the Susan B. Anthony List announced the launch of its “Life Speaking Out Campaign” aimed at encouraging House GOP leadership to make protecting women and the unborn a priority in its legislative blueprint expected after Labor Day. The campaign includes a website for pro-life activists to lobby House GOP leadership (www.LifeSpeakingOut.com) and an encouraging letter to leadership signed by SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser.

“The Republican Party must show what it is made of this time around. They can do so by acting on their convictions and those of their party, and by making a commitment to passage of common-sense, life-saving legislation,” said Dannenfelser. “Missing from the GOP’s original Contract in 1994 was any emphasis on policies protecting the unborn. Pro-life legislation was not made a priority in the following Congress. With the support of a vibrant pro-life movement that understands the urgency of addressing the tragedy of nearly 4,000 abortions per day coupled with the vast majority of Americans who support a commonsense pro-life agenda, enacting that agenda would not require a heavy lift ... It would be an electorally costly mistake for the future for the GOP to write off one leg of the three-legged stool of Ronald Reagan conservatism. Real leaders multi-task. The strongly pro-life GOP leadership should be able to respond to the economic crisis and enact pro-life legislation,” Dannenfelser said.

Expect to see more of this, as other Religious Right groups started demanding that things like support for "traditional marriage" and religious freedom also be explicitly included in any GOP governing agenda.

Colson Demands An Explanation After Obama Destroys His Favorite Conspiracy Theory

Remember how a few weeks back, the Religious Right was suddenly up in arms because President Obama had supposedly stopped using the phrase "freedom of religion" and started using "freedom of worship" instead? 

To people like Chuck Colson it was proof of some Obama-orchestrated plot to radically narrow the rights of Christians in order to ultimately destroy Christianity in America. 

Of course, it was also complete nonsense.

But today, Colson is back with a new commentary claiming that the Obama administration has suddenly backtracked and begun using the term "religious freedom": 

[It] seems the Administration was deliberately soft-peddling freedom of religion. Why? My first thought maybe was to marginalize Christianity in public life here in America? That’s not a whacky premise, given the increasing restrictions we see on religion here at home.

But more likely, I’ve realized, it’s an effort to appease Islamic countries, where the American belief in freedom of religion is not appreciated.

So I was surprised, to say the least, when the President spoke recently to a Muslim audience about the Ground Zero mosque. He said the following: “I believe that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as everyone else in this country.”

And later he said, “This is America. And our commitment to religious freedom must be unshakeable.”

Well, folks, I gotta confess. I’m now really confused. After speaking about nothing but “freedom of worship” for nearly a year, suddenly, before a Muslim audience, the President speaks about religious freedom. Why the change? ... Folks, I really don’t get it. I don’t want to impugn anybody’s motives. But why the deliberate confusion? Do you have any ideas? Is it perhaps freedom of religion for some, and freedom of religion for others? Why?

Let me try and clear up Colson's confusion for him: the President has been talking about religious freedom all along!

I hate to break it to you, but the Administration does not owe you an explanation about why your right-wing conspiracy theory has come completely unraveled in the face of basic facts, nor it is obligated to clear up the confusion caused by your own cluelessness.

Focus on the Family: Dedicated to Defending The Rights of "People of all Faiths," Just Not Muslims

Earlier this month, just as the right-wing anti-mosque hysteria was getting whipped up, Focus on the Family posted a video in which Stuart Shepard and Bruce Hausknecht complained about how municipalities were discriminating against churches using zoning laws:

Shepard: What does this tell us about the state of religious freedom in the United States?

Hausknecht: Well, we're seeing first a hostility toward religion. You would think in this day and age of tolerance that there would be tolerance for religious views, religious people. There is not. We're seeing it in the zoning cases, we're seeing it in the schools. That is a definite wake-up call for people of all faiths to stand up and protect their rights.

At the time, Focus was one of the few Religious Right groups that had not yet taken a position on Park 51, so I wondered if the organization would defend the right of Muslims to build the Islamic Center, especially in light of the organization's plea for "people of all faiths" to wake up and protect their religious freedoms.

So I know it will come as a shock to you all to learn that Focus' concerns for the rights of "people of all faiths" does not, in fact, apply to Muslims:

During CitizenLink's weekly webcast, Tom Minnery said, "Nobody is suggesting that the brand of Islam practiced by the owners of this mosque [is] going to lead to more terrorist attacks. But for Heaven's sake, in the name of all that is decent and in the name of common sense, build it elsewhere."

He said the group had the right to build, but he questioned the prudence of doing so. "Is it dishonoring to the 3,000 people who gave their lives to have this mosque which, in some minds, represents a similar religious belief that caused the terrorists to do what they did?" said Minnery.

Stuart Shepard, host of the webcast, noted that this position is a departure from Minnery's previous positions on religious liberty.

"You have spent a lot of time talking about religious freedom. And you work for Alliance Defense Fund quite a bit helping them fight for the rights of people, for religious freedom. It is quite a turn for you to say that this is not the right location for religious freedom to be expressed," said Shepard.

"Well, it is indeed," said Minnery.

Gary Bauer Officially Declares "Mosque Exclusion Zone" to Be 1.7 Miles

Those who have been busy pointing out the hypocrisy of those right-wing activists who hail the fundamental importance of defending the First Amendment's guarantee of religious freedom while simultaneously leading a crusade against the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque" have been fond of asking just how large the "mosque exclusion zone" is supposed to be.

Well, Gary Bauer has an answer - 3000 yards

Liberal talking heads often suggest that opposition to the mosque at Ground Zero is just thinly veiled bigotry. They contend that the opponents of the mosque would oppose the construction of a mosque anywhere, and ask rhetorically, “How large should the mosque-free buffer zone around Ground Zero be?”

I’ve thought about that question, and here’s my suggested compromise: Back up the mosque one yard for every life that was lost at Ground Zero on 9/11. Three thousand lives lost equals three thousand yards away. If the organizers of the Ground Zero mosque would accept that compromise, the controversy would be over.

Let's see, 3,000 yards is 9,000 feet, which is 1.7 miles ...  so there you go: the Mosque Exclusion Zone is officially set at at just under two miles. 

Does that mean that all the mosques that already exist within this radius now have to be shut down and moved?

Even The "Religious Freedom Coalition" Opposes Park 51?

The Religious Freedom Coalition is a right-wing group that proclaims itself "dedicated to the equality of all mankind and the freedom of religious expression. The Religious Freedom Coalition maintains that Religious Freedom is the 'first liberty' and wherever Religious Freedom is suppressed there is no true freedom of assembly, press or speech."

The Religious Freedom Coalition also runs a website called No 9-11 Mosque and issues press releases blasting President Obama for supporting the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque":

Religious Freedom Coalition chairman William J. Murray released a statement Saturday concerning the endorsement by President Obama of the mega mosque construction near Ground Zero:

"President Barack Obama's interference in support of the mega mosque near Ground Zero is perplexing. As chairman of the Religious Freedom Coalition I visit the burned down and bombed churches in the Middle East. I interview the families who have had their children kidnapped and murdered in the name of Islamic supremacy.

"I am a personal witness to the double standard of forced Islamic domination in a large part of the world coupled with a demand for special rights fir Muslims that goes beyond tolerance in the United States. President Obama's statement in favor of a mosque at Ground Zero is in deep contrast to ignoring the plight of St. Nicholas, the only church destroyed on 9-11. It has still not been rebuilt because of government red tape. The President's jumping enthusiastically on the band wagon of the Ground zero mega-mosque was misplaced and equally ill-timed."

I can think of no better example of the absurd hypocrisy at the heart of the right-wing crusade against Park 51 than the fact that a group calling itself a Religious Freedom Coalition which claims to be "dedicated to the equality of all mankind and the freedom of religious expression" is engaged in a campaign to prevent deny that very freedom to Muslims:

Islam is NOT a “religion of peace,” regardless of what Muslims claim. To advance their cause of conquest, an ages-old tradition called “taqiyya” allows them to outwardly pretend loyalty and empathy to “infidel” nations to keep their plans of conquest secret. When Muslims go to a mosque in America, they are entering what Islam calls a “House of War,” where taqiyya allows whatever subterfuge and lies are needed to prevail in warfare, be that war cultural, spiritual, legal or political.

We infidels, therefore, don’t know when to take Muslims at their word, because they have permission to look us in the eye and lie. So don’t be fooled by this “Trojan horse” peace offering that cloaks Islam’s true intent behind the Cordoba mosque. Please listen to the vast majority of Americans, and the four in every five New York City voters, who oppose the mosque.

Until Islamic leaders present you with a fatwa apologizing for 9-11’s acts of terrorism against non-Muslims and guaranteeing no future attacks you must stop this construction! But, don’t hold your breath, because this Fatwa will never be issued. You must block this deceptive scheme that will give Islam an even greater triumph than its 9-11 horrific attack upon your city.

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Religious Freedom Posts Archive

Miranda Blue, Wednesday 12/07/2011, 11:41am
Rick Perry is out with a new TV spot that uses a seasonal “War on Christmas” theme to attack gays serving openly in the military and accuse President Obama of waging a “war on religion.” Just last week, Perry released an ad assuring us that he’s “not ashamed of his faith” even though, he claims, “some liberals say that faith is a sign of weakness.” Oddly, we had never assumed that Perry was at all ashamed of his faith. Openly attacking gay people seems to be something of a new strategy for Perry. Yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 12/05/2011, 3:35pm
Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) appeared on WallBuilders Live today where he joined right-wing historian David Barton and his cohost Rick Green in attacking the judiciary, which Franks called “the biggest threat that we have.” The judiciary has always been a favorite target of conservatives, and recently Republican presidential candidates Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich have declared an all-out assault on the judicial branch. Franks, who is the Co-Chair of Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign, argued that the courts are trying “inch by inch” to “take away our... MORE
Brian Tashman, Friday 12/02/2011, 3:10pm
Back in November, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins charged that the Obama administration “has been the most hostile toward religious freedom” and particularly “hostile toward Christianity.” However, apparently the freedom of religion for non-Christians is not important for Perkins, who today was joined by Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) on Washington Watch Weekly where they condemned the Air Force Academy for allowing self-identified pagans to build and pray at an outdoor worship grounds. As Air Force Chaplain Maj. Darren Duncan told the Los Angeles Times,... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 10/25/2011, 3:00pm
Speaking with Family Research Council president Tony Perkins on Washington Watch last week, Texas Republican Rep. Ted Poe accused President Obama and his administration of promoting policies that are “anti-religious.” Poe and Perkins were discussing with the manufactured controversy over a Texas veteran’s cemetery that prohibits a volunteer group from holding religious services at a funeral if the family does not request it. The New York Times points out that this rule was created in 2007 by the Bush administration, but according to Poe, the policy is actually all Obama... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 10/24/2011, 12:00pm
Randy Thomasson of Save California joined Janet Mefferd on Friday to discuss the Queer Studies minor at Cal State Fullerton, and the anti-gay activist called the program an “oxymoron.” According to Thomasson, a sincere academic discussion of the LGBT community would show that no one is born gay and that people can simply change their sexual orientation and become ex-gays, “but they are dishonest so they are indoctrinating college students to think that homosexuality, bisexuality and transexuality is good and natural, maybe even for them.” He went on to warn that the... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 10/13/2011, 2:55pm
Washington Times columnist Marybeth Hicks appeared on Eagle Forum Live on Tuesday to promote her new book Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom, which is about how progressives are using media and schools to literally “brainwash our kids.” Speaking with host Bill Borst, Hicks criticized the media and the show “Glee” for supposedly negatively portraying Christians. But Hicks reserved her harshest attacks for “Family Guy” and its creator Seth MacFarlane. Hicks said that MacFarlane, a People... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 10/12/2011, 1:40pm
This morning on the Today Show Mitt Romney and Chris Christie repeated their call for Rick Perry to disassociate himself from pastor Robert Jeffress because of the pastor’s denigration of Romney’s Mormon faith. Yesterday, Christie even compared Jeffress to “those folks in New Jersey who disparaged in both parties my decision to appoint a Muslim judge” and said that any “campaign that associates itself with that type of comment is beneath the office of President of the United States, in my view.” Ironically, one of the people who slammed Christie over his... MORE