New at Live Action – Shocker: Episcopal Priest Brags That She’d Break the Law to Give Minors the "Blessing" of Abortion

My latest Live Action post:

In a textbook case of being too honest for her own good, a pro-abortion activist told lawmakers on Thursday that she’d gladly break the law to help minors kill babies without their parents’ knowledge or consent. Episcopal Divinity School president and dean, Dr. Katherine Hancock Ragsdale, “recalled the time she took a 15-year-old girl she had never met before to get an abortion”:

‘Although New Hampshire was closer to that girl’s home than Boston, as it happened, I did not take her across state lines,’ Ragsdale said. ‘Nor did I, to my knowledge, break any laws.’
‘But if either of those things had been necessary in order to help her, I would have done them,’ she continued. ‘And if helping young women like her should be made illegal I will, nonetheless, continue to do it.’
Ragsdale cited her vows as an Episcopal priest as the reason why she would “have no choice” but to break the law.

The modern leadership of the Episcopal Church might embrace abortion, but the Bible they claim to follow is decidedly less sympathetic. And doesn’t the church have anything to say about respecting parents’ relationships with their children, or whether their judgment and authority takes precedence over that of a complete stranger?

Read the rest at Live Action.

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New at NewsReal – No Islamophobia Epidemic Here: The Surprising Truth About Hate Crimes in America

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

Rep. Peter King’s announced congressional hearings on Muslim extremism have brought on a tidal wave of condemnation of the level to which America allegedly embraces anti-Islamic bigotry, so it’s important to take a look at how American Muslims are really treated in this country.

We’ve noted before how polling data indicates that the American people don’t consider most Muslims to be terrorism supporters and FBI numbers show that Muslims actually comprise a very small share of the nation’s annual hate crime victims. And yesterday, the Center for Security Policy released a new report on religiously motivated hate crimes between 2000 and 2009, which “contradicts the false assertions that hate crimes against Muslims have increased, and that the alleged cause is widespread Islamophobia in America.” CSP president Frank Gaffney says:

This report is important because it exposes a false belief perpetuated by a few vocal groups that religious bias crimes against Muslims are on the upswing.  The truth is quite the opposite.  These arguments, unsubstantiated by hard factual data, are corrosive to community relationships at every level of American society, and a potential threat to national security.

First, the report’s summary chart [download here] shows that the overwhelming majority of Americans are peaceful to members of all faiths. There were a total of 6,319 anti-religious hate crimes perpetrated against Americans of all faiths in the last decade. As despicable as every single act was, that number is well within the range we should expect in a free society of over 300 million people (consider that in 2008 alone there were 16,272 murders, 89,000 rapes, and 441,855 robberies). Neither Jews, Christians nor Muslims are suffering any kind of hate-crime epidemic.

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

New on NewsReal – GLAAD Condemns "The Dilemma’s" Gay Joke: Justified Offense or Political Correctness Run Amok?

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

Carl Kozlowski at Big Hollywood hails Ron Howard’s new film The Dilemma as “an instant classic for the conservative comedy lover,” so it’s fitting that some leftists don’t think it’s so funny. Rob Shuter reports that the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is blaming the movie’s less than stellar opening weekend on a joke about electric cars being gay:

“Although there are a million reasons why a film can fail, we hope that Ron Howard and Universal will recognize from this that alienating audiences isn’t a recipe for success,” said Herndon Graddick, deputy director of programs at GLAAD, who oversees GLAAD’s work with TV networks and film studios.

Back in October, CNN’s Anderson Cooper started a firestorm when he said he was offended by a movie trailer he had seen wherein an actor repeatedly used the word “gay” in a derogatory way.

“I was shocked that not only they put it in the movie, but that they thought that it was OK to put that in a preview for the movie to get people to go and see it,” he told Ellen DeGeneres without naming the movie. “I just find those words, those terms, we’ve got to do something to make those words unacceptable cause those words are hurting kids.”

Both Howard (not exactly a right-winger) and star Vince Vaughn (a Republican) have defended the joke, with Howard noting that his movie is “a comedy for grown-ups, not kids” and that if “storytellers, comedians, actors and artists are strong armed into making creative changes, it will endanger comedy as both entertainment and a provoker of thought.” Vaughn says that “joking about our differences breaks tension and brings us together,” but “[d]rawing divided lines over what we can and cannot joke about does exactly that; it divides us.”

Read the rest on NewsRealBlog.

Another Catholic Leader for Amnesty

Among the unpleasant truths more conservatives need to confront is the fact that organized religion isn’t always on our side. In particular, the Catholic Church has allowed itself to be hijacked by the Left, particularly on health care, the Middle East, and illegal immigration.

Now, Archbishop Charles Chaput has endorsed the deeply-flawed DREAM Act:

Archbishop Chaput said the bill “is about fairness to high school graduates who were brought to this country unlawfully through no fault of their own, since they came with their parents.”

He added that those who would benefit from the act are “talented, intelligent and dedicated young persons who know only the United States as their home.”

He called the bill “a practical, fair and compassionate solution for thousands of young persons in our nation who simply want to reach their God-given potential and contribute to the well-being of our nation.”

“This important piece of legislation is critical for the lives and hopes of thousands of young people across America,” the Denver archbishop said, urging people to contact their federal senators and representatives. Voting in favor of the act “is the right and just thing to do,” he said.

First, methinks the archbishop should familiarize himself with the bill a little more; the requirements for qualification are extremely lax, people are eligible until they’re thirty-five, and those who’ve made it can use their status to bring in more relatives – making the DREAM Act hardly practical, and about rather more than “fairness to high school graduates.”

Second, someone needs to explain to me how Catholic principles – heck, how any flavor of Christianity – requires us to look the other way as our immigration laws are violated, or how it’s inhumane to treat the citizens of other countries as, er, the citizens of other countries.

Fortunately, the DREAM Act is dead for now. But the Catholic Church shows no signs of waking up from its nightmare any time soon.

New on NewsReal – Are Social Conservatives "Statist Control Freaks"? Not So Fast

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

This weekend, NewsRealBlog’s Lori Heine objected to Ann Coulter’s recent column attempting to tie WikiLeaks enabler Bradley Manning to the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. Today, she responds to several critical commenters. I’m not terribly interested in revisiting DADT right now—my position is that I’ll defer to military experts on what changes should be made to the current policy, but I insist that the decision be based on military criteria alone, not political correctness or kowtowing to the whims of the radical gay Left.  Lori argues her position well, and successfully refutes several of her critics.
However, I must take issue with the way she conflates social conservatism with statism:

One form of fun of which big-government statists on the social Right never seem to tire is the purity game.  True believers must toe the line and never stray from it, even one jot or tittle.  “You are no conservative,” another commenter harrumphed at me.  Since this person evidently thinks only the big-government, control-freak statists on the social Right are the “real” conservatives, then according to his definition of course I am not.  Nor would I ever want to be.

What I am is a former Leftist progressive who has come to the conclusion that libertarian conservatism is – for a wide variety of reasons – the right direction for America to take.  The relentless and childish tug-of-war of the past few elections has convinced me that the Left and the statist Right are actually as alike as Tweedledee and Tweedledum and that they are, together, pulling the country apart.  Just as Leftists view any liberal who believes in small government and individual initiative a heretic, so do those on the Right who view anyone who does not share their fantasies about Granny Government and her all-powerful magic wand “not a real conservative.”

What I think of the “purity game” is no secret, either, but here I want to consider this talk of “big-government, control-freak statists on the social Right” who believe the government has an “all-powerful magic wand.”

Maybe I just missed them, but I’m struggling to recall a significant number of examples of this nefarious social-con variation. To be sure, there are a select handful of individuals who come to mind—for instance, Joseph Farah and Peter Sprigg—but beyond that, I don’t know how any significant, respected portion of the social conservative movement fits the bill.

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

New on NewsReal – Smithsonian Scandal Raises Questions: What’s "Good" Art, and Why Should I Pay for It?

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

The Christmas season just wouldn’t be Christmas these days without government-sponsored desecration of images sacred to most Americans. By now you’ve probably heard about the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery’s charming new exhibit depicting, among other things, a bloody Jesus Christ covered in ants. That part of the exhibit has been removed, but it still features “male genitals, naked brothers kissing, men in chains, Ellen DeGeneres grabbing her breasts, and a painting the Smithsonian itself describes in the show’s catalog as ‘homoerotic.’”

True to form, Media Matters is trying to defuse outrage over the controversy by repeatedly pointing out that while the Smithsonian may receive taxpayer dollars, this particular exhibit was funded privately. Here they highlight last night’s exchange between Sean Hannity and Democrat strategist Joe Trippi, who “tries to get Hannity to understand” that simple distinction:

http://cloudfront.mediamatters.org/static/flash/player.swf 

TRIPPI: The money for this exhibit was all private foundations. 

HANNITY: But I don’t agree with that analysis. It’s like saying, we fund the ability for them to open their doors every day. So they don’t get to open the door, except for the American taxpayer.

TRIPPI: The American taxpayer paid for the building and those kinds of things, but it’s an art museum, I mean – and this particular art exhibit is the influence of gay and lesbian artists on portraiture.

HANNITY: Fine. If they wanna have an art museum with this stuff, we shouldn’t pay to open their doors so they can put this type of stuff in there! 

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

Around the Web

The Iraqis don’t want us to leave yet, and a narrow majority doubts that Barack Obama cares about their situation. Great…

Is Christianity true?

In National Review, Jason Lee Steorts reveals the dark side of Ayn Rand.

I love the video game Portal as much as the next guy, but giving people academic credit for playing it is really pushing it.

Here are two links about alleged right-wing violence not being so right-wing after all. (Hat tip to Ann Coulter)

And here comes backdoor amnesty. Boy, some leadership from the opposition party would be nice….