Alan Keyes counters 'religious freedom' claim regarding contraceptive mandate

WorldNetDaily.com

Alan Keyes

In my WND column last Friday, I pointed out that “every assertion of a fundamental human right necessarily relies in turn upon an assertion about what is right.” Today this fact is more often than not ignored, even by Americans who profess to be ardent defenders of the liberty America’s founders intended to establish and preserve. Madison succinctly summarized the founders’ understanding when he said that “Justice is the end of government, it is the end of civil society. …” But the Declaration of Independence makes clear that the end or aim of the institution of government is to secure God-endowed unalienable rights. (“To secure these rights governments are instituted among men. …”) Justice is thus identified with the security (safe existence) of unalienable rights, because both are identified as the singular end or aim of government. (If A=C and B=C, then A=B.)

This appears even more plainly when we recall that the root of justice (Latin “iustus”) is right (Latin “ius” or “ious”). But in the context of the Declaration’s stated purpose for government, God endows right (i.e., He provides the “income” that establishes it; He determines what goes into it; He is the source of its conceptual substance or meaning). In the Declaration America’s founders declare that the colonies “are, and of right ought to be free and independent States. …” Their free condition is thus identified as a matter or right, a consequence of the substance or meaning which God endows their nature. By invoking their natural right they invoke the authority of the Creator, which is its source and substantiation.

Since the founders’ assertion of freedom invokes the authority of the Creator, the validity of the assertion depends on its conformity with the substance or meaning of right established by that authority. But this dependency has a consequence. It restricts the assertion of freedom within boundaries determined by this conformity to God-endowed right. Freedom is therefore not an unlimited potential for action. The assertion of freedom is valid only for action in conformity with the substance or meaning of right as established (endowed) by the Creator.

By this straightforward logic Abraham Lincoln was bound to conclude that one cannot have the right to do what is wrong. If it is wrong, for instance, to murder innocent people, one cannot claim to do so as a matter of right. If it is wrong, by enslaving them, to violate their God-endowed liberty, one cannot claim to do so as a matter of right.

Read this story at wnd.com ...

 
 
"(W)hen in the distant future some man, some faction, some interest, should set up the doctrine that none but rich men, or none but white men, or none but Anglo-Saxon white men, were entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, their posterity might look up again to the Declaration of Independence and take courage to renew the battle which their fathers began, so that truth and justice and mercy and all the humane and Christian virtues might not be extinguished from the land; so that no man would hereafter dare to limit and circumscribe the great principles on which the temple of liberty was being built."

-- Abraham Lincoln, August 17, 1858


 
 
America's Party Endorsed Independent Projects -> Equal Protection for Posterity

BioEdge 

Michael Cook

The world’s first euthanasia film festival is being held in Amsterdam, sponsored by the Dutch Right to Die lobby (NVVE). This week, from February 6 to 12 is a "Week of Euthanasia" in the Netherlands, a celebration of a decade of euthanasia and assisted suicide. They were legalised on April 1, 2002.  

More than 35 old and new films and documentaries, from all over the world, from Hollywood to Bollywood are to be screened. They include Million Dollar Baby, Mar Adentro, The Barabarian Invasions, Las Buenas Hierbas, Igby goes down, Whose Life is it Anyway? and The Suicide Tourist. There will be five world premieres, including one about the work of the NVVE called Compassion. (For a complete list, click here.) Oddly enough, the program does not include one of the first and most famous euthanasia films, the tear-jerker Ich Klage An – perhaps because it was made by Nazis during World War II to promote voluntary euthanasia as a cover-up for the involuntary sort.

 
 
America's Party Endorsed Independent Projects -> Equal Protection for Posterity

Public Opinion

By MORGAN YOUNG
Staff writer

Every day at least one Shippensburg University student, on average, buys a dose of the emergency contraceptive Plan B from the school's vending machine.

"Somewhere between 350 and 400 (doses) are being sold" to the university's female population a year, according to Dr. Roger Serr, university vice president for student affairs. The female population was about 3,718 students last fall.

Located in a room inside the health center, the machine also holds condoms, cough drops, decongestant and pregnancy tests. It is not accessible to students after health center hours of operation. The health center is closed in the evenings, after 2 p.m. on Fridays and all weekend.

Serr said the machine was requested by the SU Student Association shortly after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lifted a restriction on the pill that limited its non-prescriptive sale to individuals older than 18 in 2009. 

Read this story at PublicOpinionOnline.com ...

 
 
LifeandLibertyReport.com

by Tom Hoefling

Some thoughts on the occasion of President Ronald Wilson Reagan’s 101st birthday
Ronald Reagan began his political life as a Democrat. Later, as we all know, he became a Republican, famously saying that he didn’t leave the Democrat Party, the Democrat Party left him. And, of course, he was elected to two terms as California Governor, and served two terms as President, as a Republican. Because of that, his name will always be associated with that party.

But I think his legacy transcends, and will outlive, that once-grand old party as well, as that party moves inexorably away from morally-conservative Reaganism and towards Romneyite liberalism, and/or Ron Paul libertarianism and isolationism, inevitably consigning itself to the same unprincipled ash heap of American politics as the Whigs. Ronald Reagan never left the Republican Party. But the Republican Party is, without a doubt, abandoning Reaganism.

As President, Reagan rose above the mere fact of his party label, and came to represent true Americanism. He clearly saw the vision of the “shining city on a hill” of the gospel of Matthew, chapter 5, and of that great Puritan John Winthrop, and for him it shone ever brighter. He often quoted America’s founding paragraph – “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…” – and understood the crucial import of those immortal words. He came to firmly stand for the equal protection of the God-given, unalienable right to life of all, including those who have not yet been born, from the first moment of their creation.

"Lincoln recognized that we could not survive as a free land when some men could decide that others were not fit to be free and should be slaves...Likewise, we cannot survive as a free nation when some men decide that others are not fit to live and should be abandoned to abortion." – Abortion and the Conscience of a Nation

He arrived at that place because he was a decent human being, one who reverenced God and respected all of those who were made in His image, not because he was a Republican. Frankly, the elites, even in his own party, would rather that he had just shut up about it.

When he consistently pointed the people back to the Bible and to God, he did so as a Christian, cut from the same cloth as this republic’s wise founders, not as a Republican, and he didn’t seem to care much what the political high muckedy-mucks thought of it. He understood that in fact our national departure from God is at the root of virtually all of our problems.

"Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid. That's why the Marxist vision of man without God must eventually be seen as an empty and a false faith - the second oldest in the world - first proclaimed in the Garden of Eden with whispered words...'Ye shall be as gods.' The crisis of the Western world...exists to the degree in which it is indifferent to God." -- March 20, 1981, CPAC, Washington, DC

When he stated his deep belief that the rest of humanity, not just Americans, are also endowed by our Creator with the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and expressed his determination to do whatever he could within the legitimate powers of his office to make it possible for millions, or billions, of those men and women to enjoy the Blessings of Liberty that we enjoy, he was representing the best of what it means to be an American.

"I have seen the rise of fascism and communism. Both philosophies glorify the arbitrary power of the state...But both theories fail. Both deny those God-given liberties that are the inalienable right of each person on this planet, indeed, they deny the existence of God." – Beijing, China, April 27, 1984

His Peace through Strength policies brought down the evil Soviet communist empire, an historic feat that few outside his closest counsels ever thought possible. But, when he stood at the Brandenburg Gate and demanded, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” he was not doing so as a Republican. He was doing it as an American, and the whole world knew it.

When he strictly warned us of the destructive dangers of socialized medicine and every other left-wing incursion on liberty, he did it as an American.

"One of the traditional methods of imposing statism or socialism on a people has been by way of medicine...and behind it will come other federal programs that will invade every area of freedom as we have known...until, one day...we will awake to find that we have socialism. And...you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children, what it once was like in America when men were free." – 1961 Reagan recording

Sadly, in 2012, we have come to a point in which the “front-runners” for the highest office in the land in both the Democrat and the Republican parties are determined to take us down that exact road to socialist bondage and the extinction of freedom. Both have also advocated and advanced public policies that deny the fundamental humanity of certain classes of our fellow human beings, namely the unborn.

So, what do we do? Do we fold our hands and give up in the face of these two corrupt political parties and their unprincipled leaders? No, no, no, no, a thousand times, NO! We’re Americans, and we must do what Americans have always done when their backs were up against the wall. We must fight! We must strive with all our might for life, liberty, and the Constitution, for the sake of our posterity.

That is how I intend to honor the memory of the greatest President of my lifetime, Ronald Reagan. I’m going to fight for what is right, no matter the odds. I pray that you will do the same. No matter what it may look like, if enough of us will take up that challenge, we will win – with the help, and by the grace, of course, of Almighty God. Just like the Gipper did.


Tom Hoefling is the founder and chairman of America’s Party. Please visit http://www.selfgovernment.us.

*Thanks to American Minute’s Bill Federer for providing the Reagan quotes used in this article.


 
 
American Minute with Bill Federer

British Journalist Malcolm Muggeridge explained how Hitler's universal healthcare plan eventually led to the Holocaust:

"We have been accorded, for those that have eyes to see, an object lesson in what the quest for 'quality of life' without reference to 'sanctity of life' can involve...The origins of the Holocaust lay, not in Nazi terrorism...but in pre-Nazi Weimar Germany's acceptance of euthanasia and mercy-killing as humane and estimable."

Dietrich Bonhoeffer rebuked German Christians who stood silent while Hitler intimidated church leaders to accept the socialist, anti-life agenda of the National Socialist Workers Party (NAZI).

The New York Times reported Oct. 10, 1933:

"Nazi Plan to Kill Incurables to End Pain; German Religious Groups Oppose Move...The Ministry of Justice...explaining the Nazi aims regarding the German penal code, today announced its intentions to authorize physicians to end the sufferings of the incurable patient...in the interest of true humanity.

The Catholic newspaper Germania hastened to observe: 'The Catholic faith binds the conscience of its followers not to accept this method.'...In Lutheran circles, too, life is regarded as something that God alone can take...

Euthanasia...has become a widely discussed word in the Reich...No life still valuable to the State will be wantonly destroyed."

Bonhoeffer warned Germans not to slip into the cult of Führer (leader) worship, as he could turn out to be a Verführer (mis-leader, seducer).

Jimmy Carter, in his book Sources of Strength, 1997, wrote:

"Rev. Niebuhr urged Dietrich Bonhoeffer to remain in America for his own safety. Bonhoeffer refused. He felt he had to be among the other Christians persecuted in Germany.

So he returned home, and...in resistance to Hitler...preached publicly against Nazism, racism, and anti-Semitism...Bonhoeffer was finally arrested and imprisoned.

Born FEBRUARY 4, 1906, he died April 9, 1945, just a few days before the allied armies liberated Germany. He was executed on orders of Heinrich Himmler. He died a disciple and a martyr."

Jimmy Carter concluded:

"The same Holy Spirit...that gave Bonhoeffer the strength to stand up against Nazi tyranny is available to us today."

As a young man, Bonhoeffer was deeply effected by the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York, where he taught Sunday School and formed a life-long love for African-American spirituals.

Bonhoeffer challenged believers:

"To endure the cross is not tragedy; it is the suffering which is the fruit of an exclusive allegiance to Jesus Christ"

In his most widely read book, The Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer wrote:

"Cheap grace is the mortal enemy of our church. Our struggle today is for costly grace."

On February 16, 2002, Dr. James Dobson told the National Religious Broadcasters:

"Those of you who feel that the church has no responsibility in the cultural area...

What if it were 1943 and you were in Nazi Germany and you knew what Hitler was doing to the Jews...Would you say, 'We're not political-that's somebody else's problem'?"

Dobson concluded:

"I thank God Dietrich Bonhoeffer did not give that answer, and he was arrested by the Nazis and hanged in 1945, naked and alone because he said, 'This is not right.'"

 
 
America's Principles In Public Policy -> Committee to Defend the Natural Family

RenewAmerica.com

Judie Brown

A recent study is attempting to convince Americans that obtaining an abortion is actually a safe alternative to giving birth. But those of us who know, understand, and value human life, know that this is a ridiculous conclusion. Today's commentary addresses this. Read on for Judie Brown's insights...

Read this story at renewamerica.com ...
_
 
 
__America's Party Principles In Public Policy -> Equal Protection for Posterity

BioEdge.org

Michael Cook

Remember the Avis Rent-a-Car commercials from the 1960s? Maybe not. Anyhow, they tripled the company’s market share with the slogan, “Avis Is Only No. 2, We Try Harder.” The Belgian right-to-die lobby seems to have the same can-do attitude. In the journal Health Policy, researchers associated with the End-of-Life Care Research Group at Ghent University and the Vrije Universiteit Brussels have lamented the low take-up of the services of doctors specialising in facilitating euthanasia.

Read this story at bioedge.org ...

 
 
_Equal Protection for Posterity

LifeSiteNews.com

by Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON - After being deluged with complaints from outraged religious groups, Obama’s health department has dug in its heels, saying its decision to force employers to provide abortifacient birth control drugs will continue as planned - although faith-based groups will be given a year reprieve. In response, U.S. Catholic bishops have not minced words, vowing to fight the order as “literally unconscionable.” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced Friday that faith-based entities like hospitals and universities will have until August 1, 2013 to provide employees with free birth control as part of their insurance packages. The mandate will also force such groups to pay for sterilizations and, because the FDA has approved abortifacient drugs such as Ella as “contraception.”

The mandate is being implemented as part of the new health care legislation that was passed in March 2010 despite vigorous opposition from U.S. Catholic bishops, who called it dangerously open to being used as a means of spreading abortion.

Read this story at LifeSiteNews.com ...

 
 
_*Provided courtesy of the Committee to Defend Marriage & the Natural Family

CNSNews.com

January 17, 2012

Elizabeth Harrington

By the time they leave elementary school, children should be able to “define sexual orientation,” and by the eighth grade be able to “define emergency contraception and its use,” according to a report containing controversial new recommendations for sex education in U.S. public schools.

“Ideally, comprehensive sexuality education should start in kindergarten and continue through 12th grade,” says the “National Sexuality Education Standards” report, drawn up by a range of advocates, academics and public education officials. The Future of Sex Education (FoSE), an initiative started by sex education advocates, developed the standards “to create a strategic plan for sexuality education policy and implementation.”

Also involved are the American School Health Association, the National Education Association Health Information Network – the non-profit arm of the nation’s largest teacher’s union, the NEA – the American Association for Health Education and the Society of State Leaders of Health and Physical Education.

An advisory committee includes senior officials from Planned Parenthood and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN).

The 45-page report determines “age-appropriate” guidelines for comprehensive sexuality education in the areas of anatomy, identity, pregnancy, sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) and others.

“Specifically, the National Sexuality Education Standards were developed to address the inconsistent implementation of sexuality education nationwide and the limited time allocated to teaching the topic,” reads the report.

The authors argue too little time is devoted to instruction in HIV, pregnancy and STD prevention – a median total of 3.1 hours in elementary school, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In its rationale for sex education in public schools, the report says there is “a pressing need to address harassment, bullying and relationship violence in our schools, which have a significant impact on a student’s emotional and physical well-being as well as on academic success.”

Standards to be introduced in kindergarten and be met by the second grade include: “Identify different kinds of family structures” and “Demonstrate ways to show respect for different types of families.”

Recommendations for students by the time they reach age seven include that they use proper names for body parts, including male and female anatomy” and “provide examples of how friends, family, media, society and culture influence ways in which boys and girls think they should act.”

Starting in the third grade, and upon completion of the fifth – when most children are 10 years old – students should be able to “[d]efine sexual orientation as the romantic attraction of an individual to someone of the same gender or a different gender” and “identify parents or other trusted adults of whom students can ask questions about sexual orientation.”

By completion of the eighth grade, the report says, students should be able to “differentiate between gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation,” “xplain the range of gender roles,” and “define emergency contraception and its use.”

Upon completion of middle school, students should be able to “analyze external influences that have an impact on one’s attitudes about gender, sexual orientation and gender identity”; “access accurate information about gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation”; “communicate respectfully with and about people of all gender identities, gender expressions and sexual orientations”; “explain the health benefits, risks and effectiveness rates of various methods of contraception, including abstinence and condoms”; and “describe the steps to using a condom correctly.”

And by the time they graduate from high school students should be expected to “define emergency contraception and describe its mechanism of action” and “assess the skills and resources needed to become a parent.”

Read this story at CNSNews.com ...