Wish I'd said that!

In recent decades, the ACLU has used its so-called "wall" to fight tooth and nail to prevent government sponsorship of the Pledge of Allegiance, memorial crosses, Ten Commandments displays, nativity scenes, Bible displays, and virtually every other acknowdgement of America's religious heritage.

At the same time, it is worthwhile to note that there have been some instances in which the ACLU has endorsed public displays of religion. For example, When New York City Mayor Rudi Giuliani threatened to cut taxpayer funding from the Brooklyn Museum of Art for displaying a painting of the Virgin Mary with cow dung and pictures of female sexual organs pasted all over her body, the ACLU was first in line to defend the display. U.S. District Court Judge Nina Gershon ruled that New York City's elected officials were not allowed to place conditions on the museum's funding.

In another instance, the ACLU offered its support to the taxpayer-funded National Endowment for the Arts, after the agency sponsored an art show featuring "Piss Christ" - an exhibit consisting of a crucifix submerged in a jar of urine.

In the ACLU's myopic world, it appears that the only permissible publicly-funded displays of religion are those which blatantly mock or disparage the Christian faith.

-- Indefensible: 10 Ways the ACLU is Destroying America, Sam Kastensmidt, 2006

Friday, December 26, 2008

Looking forward, downward, upward

I hope you had a Merry Christmas, and avoided that current intolerable intolerance of all things Christian. But now we must again look forward, especially in light of a new administration about to take over the reign --uh, reins -- of government.

The Bush Administration is about to exit, with one more instance of egg on its face with the revocation of the presidential pardon of Isaac Toussie for a real estate scam among a flurry of clemency for drug dealers, counterfeiters and other criminals. Yet as of this writing, two loyal Border Patrolmen -- Ramos and Compean -- remain behind federal bars for doing their job. Not so incidentally, an article recently appeared that exposes how timid currently serving border guards have become, refusing to return fire when attacked at our southern border for fear of ending up in prison like their brethren. I had long been a supporter (and still support his views on the Middle East wars) until he began his obeisance to the Mexican government. I can support him no longer. While our southern border explodes in kidnappings, crime and violence, George Bush has been acting as though he's campaigning to move into the Mexican version of the White House.

The bailout continues to bankrupt our nation by trying to bouy up corporations that are sinking themselves (with the help of the unions, of course). More companies "just too big to fail" are begging at the federal teat (i.e., our wallets), and a report out this morning opined that by next Christmas a lot of familiar company names apparently not too big to fail may no longer be around. You can expect states to follow, and several, including our own perpetually overtaxed New York State, have already put in their applications.

On Fox News today, a scary scenario is emerging, whereby at least 19 states are ready to close courthouses for extended periods to save money . While this may not sound very important, here's the point: delaying criminal (i.e., felony) trials for extended periods is a breach of the constitutional right to a speedy trial. As Fox's own Judge Napolitano warned, it could mean localities and states being forced to set criminals free, partly in order to avoid even more costly infringement lawsuits. And should we not mention further weakening the Constitution?

The bailout and the California court (regarding Prop 8) have showed us that government no longer responds to the will of the people, and the PC police continue to run roughshod over us. Here in New York, the governor is proposing to put a high(er) tax on such items as non-diet sodas and other sugared foods. So we can't consume sweets or fats; what's next?

Besides the what-should-be-obvious fact that higher taxes only limit what poorer folks can buy, drive out those who can afford to move, and put an increasing burden on those forced to remain, it illustrates that when the people are removed from the mechanism and oversight of government, government naturally tends to increase its power over the people, and in its greed and avarice will eventually go beyond the point where it can even manage the power it grabs, to the point of utter collapse of the entire society.

If allowed to dictate which foods you can eat, what other limits to credulity will it try to stretch? In only a generation, government has severely restricted your right to use tobacco (as much as I hate the stuff, you should still have the right to abuse it if it doesn't affect others) and alcohol, has severely limited your right to defend yourself, has put an excessive tax (call it 'extortion by government') on your money if you try to take it out of the country, has heavily taxed the medical industry (which accounts for a sizeable portion of medical expenses), taxes virtually anything that does or doesn't move, continuously calls for taking more money from those who are successful (thereby limiting their willingness or ability to produce jobs for others), and has allowed a largely unregulated abortion industry to kill off millions of future workers (which also would have been known as taxpayers). Have I missed anything? Oh, yeah, the increasing marginalization and persecution of Christians who have struggled to restore some semblance of sanity and balance.

Although I have tried hard to push off the conspiracy theories I had entertained in years past, it is becoming increasingly difficult to ignore the evidence that there is, if not a conspiracy, certainly an unsettling consensus of ideology diametrically opposed to all the good that has been produced in western culture over the past two hundred-plus years (for example; didn't George Soros -- the major contributor for leftist causes -- and others help to collapse the British pound in 1992?). Because of a Marxist/Darwinist ideology that has slowly been inculcated throughout the culture (although "culture" is becoming more of a misnomer by the day) through the media and the educational system, we have a population that cannot discern the difference between right and wrong, and cannot differentiate between good and bad except where it concerns personal selfish motives.

I'm sorry to be the bearer of such bad tidings, especially at a time when most of us try to be upbeat. But until we pull our collective heads out of our nether regions, things are going to get worse. Much worse. And the worse things become, the louder the cry will go out for someone to 'save' us. Unfortunately, without the personal ability of discernment (which requires actually trying to understand how things work), we will continue to look for help in all the wrong places; and as the saying goes, we will get the kind of government we deserve.

I'd like to believe the incoming Obama Administration will discover quickly how wrong its campaign promises were (and they are already backtracking on many of them, to the ire of the liberals and useful idiots who elected him), but I fear there will be a lot of intentional and circumstantial missteps that are going to further divide and weaken this nation.

Frankly, though I hate to say it and don't want to see it happen, we deserve to be taken down. For decades, America has been on a slow course of national suicide, but the pace has dramatically increased in only the past few months. Our Founders instituted a government that requires the overwatch and participation of the population. Instead, we've become a populace too lazy to actually pay attention to our leaders, and only weakly and briefly protest when those leaders slowly remove our rights and impose ever-growing taxes on us. Most voters continue to pull the lever for the one who will seem to do the most for them individually, rather than collectively. Such a self-centered mindset is not in the best interest of the nation.

I now see the wisdom of the Founders original design which only allowed landowners to vote, because when parasites become the eventual majority of the electorate, chaos naturally follows. Those few who still try to argue for a return to sanity and responsbility are shouted down as 'hate-mongers' and dividers. In fact, have you ever noticed that virtually every accusation thrown at conservatives (especially Christians) is the same thing they themselves have done? It's an old and frankly juvenile ploy of blaming the good guy for the sins of the bad guy, and yet, so many folks are willing to believe the lies instead of actually checking for themselves. As Hitler once said, tell a lie often and loud enough and the people will believe anything.

We still allow the murder of more than a million children each year in this country alone by the abortion industry, and Obama indicates he will do all he can to remove the few restraints presently in place. While he claims to oppose single-sex marriage, he owes the overly-loud and increasingly violent homosexual activist segment of the culture, which has been allowed to exercise an influence greatly in excess of its numbers (even as it continues to actively recruit to its deathstyle in the schools and media). Obama will be pressed to give even more opportunity and influence to radical homosexuals who have shown little restraint or regard for that segment of society that actually reproduces.

And now that I've sown so much misery, allow me to switch into reverse.

Yesterday was Christmas. While the evidence indicates that Jesus was not born on December 25th, it is the day we celebrate His birth. Outside of a very small circle of people including His parents, the Magi, the shepherds in the fields and the prophets who foretold His coming, few realized Who that baby in a manger was, or that He would suffer beyond our understanding in order to save us from the sins resulting from that very lack of understanding. Even today, with the propagation of thousands of ministries spreading the Good News throughout the world, with increasing physical and historical evidence pointing to the truth of the Holy Bible, many still don't seek Him, nor understand why we need Him so desperately. Many people throughout history have literally thrived on ignorance, either their own, that of those around them, or (usually) both. In a world of unreasoning and increasing hatred and selfishness, I can only echo the old lament, "O Lord, thy sea is so great, and my boat is so small."

I am utterly convinced that if we, as individuals and as a nation, began to look to Him and returned to the word of God as our instruction manual for life, He would bring us out of this deepening mess we're diving into. Of course, as a nation we probably won't do the right thing because we keep choosing the wrong leaders and refuse to listen to sound advice. But if we each would personally repent (i.e., renounce, turn away from) our sins - and each and every one of us have sinned against God and one another - and returned His laws into our own personal code of conduct, He would save us from our enemies and our own faults. It should be obvious by now that we cannot save ourselves, because we cannot get out of our own way. Our salvation, both personal and national, must come from above.

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