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Wreckonciliation

Posted: 06 Mar 2010 08:35 AM PST

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Wreckonciliation

Back in 2005, Senator Barack Obama had an opinion on the reconciliation process–and, like many of his positions since becoming President, it too has "evolved." "Reconciliation is the wrong place for policy changes," he argued. "In short, the reconciliation process appears to have lost its proper meaning. A vehicle designed for deficit reduction and fiscal responsibility has been hijacked…" (Congressional Record, S. 14150, December 20). Today, the very man who condemned this process for silencing debate is forcing the government takeover of healthcare through Congress on strict party lines using a device that he himself admitted is "wrong."

Making matters worse, the members tasked with forcing the issue may be paying for it with their political lives. In a new poll sponsored by the Susan B. Anthony List, voters reveal that they’re willing to pitch their Congressmen if they pull the trigger on a pro-abortion bill. Surveying eight of the most politically vulnerable districts, the polling company found overwhelming support for Rep. Bart Stupak’s (D-Mich.) outright abortion ban. Among the findings: "At least two-thirds of voters in each Congressional District opposed ‘using tax dollars to pay for abortions’ and in all districts majorities ’strongly opposed’… In three districts, opposition reached 80%." In every instance, voters "were more apt to reject, rather than embrace, a candidate who ‘votes for health care legislation that includes federal government funding of abortion.’" In other words, a vot e for the President’s plan might be the cheapest one-way ticket out of Washington.

That fact is not lost on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Yesterday, a testy Pelosi continued her charade on abortion coverage, telling the press, "Let me say it clearly: we all agree… there is no federal funding for abortion… There is no change in the access to abortion. No more or no less: It is abortion neutral in terms of access or diminution of access."

Perhaps the Speaker should have prepped her party on those points, since two Democrats publicly contradicted her claims within hours of the press conference. "The good news is that the Senate bill does allow [abortion coverage]," Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) told the Washington Post. Later, Pelosi’s second-in-command, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) veered off the party talking points by saying that he talked to Rep. Stupak about resolving the abortion dispute in a follow-up bill. "Well, separate pieces of legislation could be passed that would relate to that. That’s a possibility." But Congressman Hoyer, if abortion isn’t in the bill, why would a separate proposal be necessary?

The Darkest Hour Is before This Dawn

After yesterday’s vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee, President Obama is on the brink of appointing the most liberal team ever assembled at the U.S. Justice Department. His controversial pick to head up the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), Dawn Johnsen, survived her first vote (12-7) in a committee sharply divided along party lines. Although the move brings her one step closer to final confirmation, she might not be ordering her business cards any time soon. After years in the legal and academic world, Johnsen has compiled quite a record of disdain for life, religion, freedom, and judicial restraint. Given her radical background, there may be enough opposition in the full Senate to delay her nomination–though it will take a concerted effort on all of our parts to block her. Contact your Senators this week and tell them that Dawn Johnsen is unfit to serve. To lea rn why, check out this great column by FRC’s Ken Blackwell and visit our new website.

Bad Blood over FDA Donor Policy

A group of liberal Senators is asking the FDA to make some high-risk deposits in the nation’s blood bank. In a debate that seems to resurface every few years, 17 Senators have issued a letter to the FDA demanding that the agency change its donor policy, which rejects blood from men who have had sex with other men because of the high probability of HIV infection. People who care more about the homosexual agenda than American safety argue that the policy is discriminatory. But that’s exactly the point in a transfusion environment where "100% of the risk is borne by the recipient."

Despite wave after wave of political correctness, the FDA stands on science to back up the current rule. As the Washington Times notes, men who have sex with men "have an HIV prevalence ‘60 times higher than the general population, 800 times higher than first-time blood donors, and 8,000 times higher than repeat blood donors.’" Common sense would argue that most liberal Americans–including these senators–would not want to contract HIV or AIDS to make a political point. Nor is the U.S. alone in this policy. At least eight major nations ban blood donations from homosexual men, including Canada, France, and the Netherlands–all of which have proven to be far more liberal on homosexual policies than America.

Like Father, Like Son

It was announced this week that my good friend Don Wildmon is stepping down as Chairman from the American Family Association (AFA) after more than 30 years. While he continues to recover from encephalitis, Don will still be involved in the ministry he founded in his dining room back in 1977. The day-to-day leadership, however, will be passed on to his son, Tim, who shares his dad’s passion for restoring righteousness in the culture. To commemorate all that Don has contributed to the pro-family movement, FRC Action and our cosponsors are proud to honor Don at the Gala Dinner of the fifth annual Values Voter Summit at Washington, D.C.’s Omni Shoreham Hotel. Together with families across the nation, we owe Don a debt of gratitude for all he has done to defend decency and promote America’s Biblical foundation. For tickets to the September 18 celebration or the Value s Voter Summit–of which AFA is a co-sponsor–please visit the event website. In the meantime, please join me in praying for Don’s continued recovery, as well as blessings and guidance for Tim as he carries on the AFA legacy.

Tune in this Weekend!

On this edition of Washington Watch Weekly, FRC Action’s Tom McClusky stops by to give us the latest on the health care debate in Congress. Later on, I’ll be also be joined by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) to discuss the latest on the push to repeal the law against homosexuals in the military. For more information on the show or to find a radio station near you, visit FRCRadio.org.

Clash over ‘global warming’ ratcheted up another degree

Posted: 06 Mar 2010 08:31 AM PST

Clash over ‘global warming’
ratcheted up another degree

The clash over "global warming" has been ratcheted up another degree this week, with one member of Congress demanding U.S. taxpayer funding for the research be halted and scientists who have been accused of slipshod and deceptive work planning a campaign of retaliation against their critics.

Find out the latest right now on WND.com.

 

Plus!

A British Christian organization reports children as young as 5 years old soon could have their names added to "hate registers" of people accused of showing disrespect to homosexuality in violation of "hate crimes" laws.

Click here for details.

 

Must Read News

The Albany Update

Posted: 06 Mar 2010 08:29 AM PST

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ACTIVITY
The NYCF office has been swamped preparing for Legislative Day! The phones have been ringing off the hooks, plans are being finalized, and excitement is growing.  This could be the best Legislative Day ever!  But meanwhile there was lots of other activity this week:

  • The Governor: David Paterson is still the Governor of the State of New York-for now. This week the Commission on Public Integrity charged him with receiving tickets to the World Series and lying under oath. Additionally, Peter Kaufmann, the Governor’s Communications Director, resigned. He stated: "As recent developments have come to light, I cannot in good conscience continue in my current position." Then, Rev. Al Sharpton called a meeting of black leaders to discuss the Governor’s situation. They gave a tacit approval for him to stay in office-for now.
  • The Senate: One Senate committee, Children and Families, passed a bill of particular interest this week. The committee passed S1523 (Duane) that would enable any two individuals to adopt children. NYCF opposes this bill on many different levels. NYCF believes this bill only further dilutes the meaning of the word "family" by downplaying the importance of the marital relationship as the best model in which to rear children. Additionally, by allowing two same-sex partners to adopt children, New York State will be creating "family" structures that intentionally deny children either a mother or a father figure. The bill has advanced to 3rd Reading, which means the Senate could vote on the bill anytime.
  • The Assembly: The "Bathroom Bill" (A5710-A), also known as the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA) passed the State Assembly on Tuesday. Under the legislation, any man could legally gain access to facilities reserved for women and girls simply by indicating, verbally or non-verbally, that he inwardly feels female at the moment. There is no way to distinguish between someone suffering from what the American Psychological Association calls ‘Gender Identity Disorder’ and a sexual predator looking to exploit this law. The vote was 100 to 43.

         You can read NYCF’s press release on the eve of the bill’s passage here.
ANNOUNCEMENTS

Dr. Jim GarlowThe "Counter Punch" Conference (Legislative Day, Tuesday, March 16)

Dr. Jim Garlow (pictured) of Skyline Church in San Diego is the keynote speaker. The day will include recognition of legislators who voted to defend marriage, briefings on legislative issues, help organizing voter registration drives, a Teen Track, a demonstration at the Capitol, and a number of surprises. You don’t want to miss this special day. Please do whatever it takes to come.

The deadline for discounted registration is Monday, March 8.  Beat the rush by registering online. Please do your best to get your registration in on time.

SPECIAL NOTE: NYCF has negotiated a special rate with Spring Hill Suites (Marriott) for the night before the "Counter Punch" Conference. Just call (518) 724-7999 and reserve your room under "Family" for a special discounted rate of $99.99 (normally it’s $159.99). While there are cheaper hotels in the Albany area, this is one of the nicer places to stay in the region.

Praying for One Another

Please pray for the family of Pastor Bob Chappell from Calvary Chapel of Greece, NY. Pastor Chappell was taken to glory during a liver transplant operation this week. Also please pray for Pastor Ron Morse from Victory in the City Church. Pastor Morse lost his wife due to cancer on Monday. Her memorial service is Saturday the 6th at Victory Baptist Church.
ACTION

  • It’s only 10 days to the "Counter Punch" Legislative Conference in Albany, NY. Come help us send a pro-life, pro-family message to the New York State Legislature.

Haitian earthquake unleashes animosity against Voodoo

Posted: 05 Mar 2010 08:08 PM PST

Haitian earthquake unleashes animosity against Voodoo

By The Haitian Times

1:55 PM on 03/03/2010

Read More: Catholic Church, Earthquake, Haiti, Pat Robertson, Religion, Voodoo

Haitian earthquake unleashes animosity against Voodoo

  • People destroy objects that were to be used in a voodoo ceremony in the Cite Soleil neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, Tuesday Feb. 23, 2010. (AP Photo/Dario Lopez-Mills)

By Garry Pierre-Pierre
The Haitian Times

PORT-AU-PRINCE – When Pat Robertson made his now infamous comments about Haiti, it ignited a controversy in the United States and immediately triggered a Facebook page denouncing him.

Robertson, a televangelist and host of the show The 700 Club, took to the airwaves on his show and said that Haiti has been "cursed by one thing after another" since they "swore a pact to the devil."

"Something happened a long time ago in Haiti and people might not want to talk about," Robertson added. "They were under the heel of the French, you know Napoleon the third and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said ‘We will serve you if you will get us free from the prince.’ True story. And so the devil said, ‘Ok it’s a deal.’ And they kicked the French out. The Haitians revolted and got something themselves free. But ever since they have been cursed by one thing after another."

Unbeknownst to many, people in Haiti have been espousing such sentiments and in the last few months, the issue has surfaced in the open as Haitians began discussing whether indeed, their independence from France was not born out of pact with the devil.

In the month or so since the earthquake destroyed most of this capital city with a death toll of more than 230,000 people reported by Haitian authorities, Haitians from all walks of life have been saying that they need to have a new way of thinking and acting.

Chief among new consciousness is the country’s faith in Voodoo, a mixture of African and Roman Catholicism worshipped by slaves in Haiti and has become the defacto belief of all Haitians. It is commonly said that Haiti is 80 percent Catholic country and 100 percent Voodoo.

During the Jan. 12 earthquake, there were few cries of ayibobo, the Voodoo calling of the gods. Instead, everyone yelled for Jesus, according to many people interviewed.

"You know one thing that was funny, as much as we like to say ayibobo, we didn’t we all cried for God," remarked Luke Rimpel, a businessman in Port-au-Prince whose home and business were destroyed. "We have to really think about where we want to go as a nation."

Animosities aim at Voodoo worshippers took a violent tone last week as a ceremony in Cite Soleil was disrupted. According to Max Beauvoir, a prominent Voodoo priest, or hougan, a group of about 50 worshippers had gathered at a temple in the infamous slum, ostensibly to honor the dead from the earthquake. He said about 100 protestors armed with rocks began cursing at them and hurling the rocks at the Voodoo practitioners.

Beauvoir said that all of the artifacts were destroyed under the watchful eyes of the area’s mayor and chief of police.

"This is stupid, Beauvoir said. "If there is a moment for it, this not the moment to start a religious war."

Despite the attack, Beauvoir vowed to remain undeterred and called the attacks, "a violence of conscience and human rights violations."

In addition, there have been reports that food aid has been denied to prominent Voodoo worshippers in various neighborhoods.

Haiti began its successful war of independence from France in 1791, when an escaped slave named Boukman gathered thousands of followers in the forests of northern Haiti. Known as the ceremony of Bwa Kayiman, the throngs sacrificed a wild boar and pledged that with the spirits’ help, he would liberate his people and free Haiti.

After 10 years of fighting, slavery ended and Haiti became the world’s first black republic, making Boukman a hero and giving special prominence to Voodoo.

Still, Voodoo worshippers have been persecuted. A church-led campaign in the 1940s led to the destruction of temples and sacred objects. Hollywood films sensationalizing the religion and legends of the undead pushed the practice further underground. Voodoo was recognized as a formal religion in Haiti only in 1987, under a new constitution that recognizes the rights of all religions.

Many missionaries who have flocked to the country since the earthquake say their goals in Haiti are strictly humanitarian.

"We’re not here to practice our religion," said Chris Hermensen, a Mormon nurse who came after the quake to help treat patients in several hospitals told the Associated Press. "We tell people what are beliefs are but we treat everyone the same. We’re here to help right now."

In the past, few would have been bold enough to disrupt a Voodoo ceremony because of fear of retaliation of the Voodoo Gods. The fact that people felt empowered to do so signal a significant change in thinking as Haitians decide how they interact with each other since the calamities of the earthquake.

Voodoo has been an integral part of Haitian psyche. But some claim that Voodoo is as misunderstood in Haiti as it is outside with many people confusing it with witchcraft. Voodoo practitioners say that such attitude is born out of ignorance and people who are miseducated and influenced by detrimental colonial mentality.

"It all has to do with the brainwashing from the colonialists making you doubting of your ancestors’ belief and faith," said Yoleine Gateau-Esposito, a Brooklyn educator who described herself as a Voodoo/Catholic believer. "Of course when in doubt you choose the less popular one to blame although deep inside it is the unconscious mind that is at play."

Gateau-Esposito, who is from Leogane, the epicenter of the earthquake, returned recently there to organize a prayer to pay homage to the dead. During the entire time, she took pains to let those gathering on her large property that this was not a Voodoo ceremony and that anyone wishing to leave could do so.

"I specify that I was not doing a ceremony because I didn’t want people to feel obligated to attend the memorial just because they are living on my land," Gateau-Esposito said. "I wanted them to understand that my faith had nothing to do with the gathering. I was simply coming as a person leaving my belief aside."

 

http://www.thegrio.com/specials/thegrio-on-the-ground-in-haiti/haitian-earthquake-unleashed-animosity-against-voodooists.php

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