Behold the Irony, Part 3

Observations Highlighting the Ironies and the Blindness of the “Progressive” Left

Those indoctrinated by leftist thinking become largely incapable of making accurate moral judgments.
Dennis Prager

Key point: Liberty and license cannot coexist indefinitely, but leftists pretend they can. Their version of liberty actually is a cruel form of tyranny, and this is why they must be stopped. Thankfully, Alliance Defending Freedom is challenging the tyranny of the left by defending authentic liberty in court.

Part 2 is available here.
View summaries of all the articles in this series here.

M. C. Escher (1898-1972) was a Dutch artist who became well-known for depicting impossible objects and situations. The lithograph titled Relativity (pictured above) is one of his well-known works. He also created Waterfall

and Drawing Hands

Go here to see several more images by Escher that both fascinate and boggle the mind.

While it’s interesting and even fun to imagine a world in which these and other impossible constructions exist, we must remember they exist only in our imaginations. The various impossible images created by Escher violate specific physical laws that cannot be overruled in the real world. As long as we understand this, no harm is done.

Reality Is an Irresistible Force

The faulty imaginings of the “progressive” left, however, aren’t leaving the world unscathed. Rather, they are harming millions of people and a great many foundational institutions. It is time to expose these ideas as foolish, unrealistic, and—yes—extremely harmful. This is one of the goals of this series of posts.

Last time we reviewed two cases in which Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is directly involved—Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission and Country Mill Farms v. City of East Lansing. In these cases, ADF rightly contends that Jack Phillips and Steve Tennes, a cake artist and a farmer, respectively, should be free to run their businesses according to their deeply held beliefs without being penalized by the government.

Let’s draw some conclusions from these cases about the perspectives of those working against Jack’s and Steve’s religious freedom and liberty. As we consider these legal battles, we will see the inconsistencies of the political left’s thinking. We will see that in the name of tolerance, leftists are notoriously intolerant of Christians and others with traditional beliefs about marriage and the family. Please read part 2 for summaries of Jack’s and Steve’s cases.

First, Jack Phillips serves all customers who come into his shop. As we noted last time, he told Charlie Craig and David Mullins, the same-sex couple who asked him to bake them a wedding cake, “I’ll make you a birthday cake, shower cake, I’ll sell you cookies and brownies. I just don’t do cakes for same-sex weddings.” The issue, therefore, isn’t one of discrimination against homosexuals, but one of not wanting to lend one’s talent to support a specific event deemed morally wrong. This is a nuance that the progressive left refuses to see.

Second, Jack named his bakery Masterpiece Cakeshop for a reason. He’s an artist, and his work involves artistic expression. See for yourself in the first few moments of this ADF video.

Jack’s creative work is rightly considered a form of expression protected by the First Amendment to the US Constitution. As ADF Senior Counsel Jeremy Tedesco (Tuh-DESS’-koh) affirms,

Jack’s ability to make a living and run his family business shouldn’t be threatened simply because he exercised his artistic freedom. Artists speak through their art, and when Jack designs custom wedding cakes, he is promoting and celebrating the couple’s wedding. Jack will gladly allow anyone to purchase any product he sells, but he simply can’t put his artistic talents to use on a custom cake for an event so at odds with his faith convictions.

Tedesco adds,

The ACLU…would rather use the strong-arm of government to eradicate from the public square people whose views differ from the government’s. We hope the Supreme Court will affirm how illegitimate that is.”

Third, note that in 2015 the Colorado Civil Rights Commission reviewed cases for three other bakers who declined to make cakes that expressed opposition to same-sex marriage. The commission found that all three had a right to act according to the dictates of their consciences. If they have that right, why doesn’t Jack Phillips? ADF is spot on when it says, “The commission’s inconsistent rulings mean that the owners of these three cake shops may run them according to their beliefs, while Jack cannot.  He risks losing his life-long business altogether if he continues to run it consistent with his faith. Such blatant religious discrimination has no place in our society.”


The inconsistent rulings of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission “mean that the owners of…three cake shops [who turned down requests for cakes opposing same-sex marriage] may run them according to their beliefs, while Jack cannot.”
—Jeremy Tedesco, Senior Legal Counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom—


So, the demand from the left is that to stay in business, Jack Phillips must serve all customers. Actually, he does—but the left goes further. Leftists insist he must serve all customers in every situation. Jack draws the line at the point of the meaning of marriage—the very same place where the three other cake artists reviewed by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission drew the line. Equality is the watchword of the gay rights movement—but refusing to acknowledge that Jack Phillips has the same rights other cake artists enjoy isn’t equality. Not even close. It’s bigotry.

Contrast that to Jack’s position, which is an authentic two-way street. Jack has said,

Regardless of your viewpoint about same-sex marriage, shouldn’t we all agree that the government shouldn’t force us to speak or act in a way that violates our deepest convictions?

Laws like the one in Colorado will result in kindhearted Americans being dragged before state commissions and courts and punished by the government for peacefully seeking to live and work consistent with their belief about marriage.

The couple who came into my shop that day five years ago are free to hold their beliefs about marriage; all I ask is that I be allowed the equal opportunity to keep mine.


The couple who came into my shop that day five years ago are free to hold their beliefs about marriage; all I ask is that I be allowed the equal opportunity to keep mine.
—Jack Phillips—


Fourth, in the case involving Steve Tennes and Country Mill Farms, East Lansing passed an ordinance that prevents Tennes from selling his produce to any and all who would choose to do business with him, in every situation that would arise at the East Lansing Farmers Market. Kate Anderson, legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, put it this way: “All Steve wants to do is sell his food to anyone who wants to buy it, but the city isn’t letting him.” Isn’t this the kind of business activity progressives are demanding of Jack Phillips? Yet Steve is being excluded.


All Steve wants to do is sell his food to anyone who wants to buy it, but the city isn’t letting him.
—Kate Anderson, Legal Counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom—


Fifth, the tactics of East Lansing officials indicate they’re all too willing to send this message: “People can believe whatever they want, but unless they agree with us about sexuality and marriage, they will not be allowed to do business in our city.” The new policy says farmers market merchants must be in agreement and in compliance with the city’s “Human Relations Ordinance and its public policy against discrimination…while at the market and as a general business practice.” Mark it down. Steve Tennes has no problem selling to whomever wishes to buy from him—in fact, that is why he wants to participate in the first place! He does have a problem being told what he has to believe in order to be a vendor!

Kate Anderson explains,

What (Tennes) did [with regard to his beliefs about marriage] was not illegal. [See part 2 of this series of posts.] They [Steve and his family] are running their farm according to their beliefs, which is the right of every American. What is wrong here is the city of East Lansing targeting them and trying to discriminate against them for acting upon their beliefs and for believing.

What could be more un-American than being told what you have to believe to business in a particular public location? This isn’t just un-American. It’s tyrannical.

Sixth, the left has lectured Christians for decades about morality. Believers and other traditionalists have been told, “You can’t legislate morality” and “Don’t cram your values and religion down our throats!”

Far too few Americans understand that liberty and freedom are rarities in the world. Liberty in a nation is possible only when religion and morality restrain the population from using their freedoms to exploit and oppress others. Our Founders and early leaders understood this, and truthfully, it’s something both conservatives and liberals often fail to grasp. In his last book, The Great Evangelical Disaster, Francis Schaeffer explained the delicate balance between freedom, including individual liberty, and the societal order necessary for freedom to exist.

In our own country we have enjoyed enormous human freedom. But at the same time this freedom has been founded upon forms of government, law, culture, and social morality which have given stability to individual and social life, and have kept our freedoms from leading to chaos. There is a balance here between form and freedom which we have come to take as natural in the world. But it is not natural. And we are utterly foolish if we do not recognize that this unique balance which we have inherited from the Reformation thought-forms is not automatic in a fallen world. This is clear when we look at the long span of history. But it is equally clear when we read the daily newspaper and see half the world locked in totalitarian oppression.1,2

As we said, both conservatives and liberals have difficulty seeing this—but my point here is that leftist radicals are  inconsistent, hypocritical, and unrealistic. They tell us tells us we are cramming our values down their throats, but they then turn around and tell people who believe in natural marriage they must abandon their beliefs to participate in society’s routine activities. Who’s really doing the cramming?


The left is inconsistent and hypocritical. “Progressives” tell us we are shoving our values down their throats, but then they turn around and tell people who believe in natural marriage they must abandon their beliefs to participate in society’s routine activities. Who’s really doing the cramming? 


Speaking of the left’s bigotry and of history’s testimony, Dennis Prager astutely observes,

Society may no longer define marriage in the only way marriage has ever been defined in the annals of recorded history. Many societies allowed polygamy, many allowed child marriages, some allowed marriage within families; but none, in thousands of years, defined marriage as the union of people of the same sex.

Seventh, one of the tactics the left has perfected is that of using words in judgmental and manipulative ways. Writing about Steve’s case for the Gay Star News, Joe Morgan declares, “An apple farmer in Michigan is claiming he is banned from selling his fruit at a farmer’s market because of this homophobic religious views.”

You can’t have an honest and fair debate with leftists, because they don’t respect you as an equal player in the marketplace of ideas. Instead, you’re a bad person—get this!—to hold to the millennia-old definition of marriage! Amazing! This is not the American way! It’s not equality. It’s not fairness. It’s not tolerance. Rather, it is unequal, unfair, and intolerant.

Behold the irony!

 

Copyright © 2017 by B. Nathaniel Sullivan. All rights reserved.

Notes:

1Francis Schaeffer, The Great Evangelical Disaster, (Westchester, IL: Crossway Books, 1984), 21-22.

2See this article for more from Francis Schaeffer.

 

 

 

 

When a Society Has Rejected Absolutes, It Is Vulnerable to Tyranny

Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.
Benjamin Franklin, pictured above—

If we as Christians do not speak out as authoritarian governments grow from within or come from outside, eventually we or our children will be the enemy of society and the state. No truly authoritarian government can tolerate those who have real absolute by which to judge its arbitrary absolutes and who speak out and act upon that absolute.
Francis A. Schaeffer—

A version of this post that is about 1/3 as long is available here.

Among the modern champions for religious liberty are Aaron and Melissa Klein. They are the Oregon couple who owned Sweet Cakes by Melissa, a bakery in Gresham, Oregon. We recounted their story in an earlier post.

One January day in 2013, Melissa was at home with the couple’s six-month old twin sons while Aaron ran the shop. A woman named Rachel Cryer came in with her mother and inquired about a wedding cake. When they told Aaron that this wedding didn’t involve a groom but a second bride, he politely apologized, saying, “I’m sorry, we don’t do cakes for same-sex weddings.” In one way, this wasn’t easy. Aaron had no idea he was acting in violation of any statute or law, but he found no joy in turning down a customer. At the same time, his decision was clear. As Christians, Aaron and Melissa both believe that marriage is a sacred covenant between one man and one woman. They had to act on that conviction.

The Klines, who had absolutely no qualms about serving homosexuals in their bakery, drew the line at the point of participating in a same-sex marriage ceremony—yet they were accused of violating a non-discrimination law. Alliance Defending Freedom has written about this irony, and others, with regard to business owners like the Klines and Colorado baker Jack Phillips. Yet Aaron and Melissa were found to be in violation the Oregon Equality Act of 2007, an LGBT rights law. We noted that Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI)

suggested that the Kleins, who have remained strong and refused to compromise, be fined a total of $135,000 “for the emotional suffering” the lesbian couple “experienced” because Aaron and Melissa turned down their request for a same-sex wedding cake.

Then we demonstrated just how strange this whole episode became.

Writing for The Daily Signal, Kelsey Harkness explained the twisted rationale for the exorbitant fines.

In order to reach $135,000, Rachel and [her partner] Laurel submitted a long list of alleged physical, emotional and mental damages they claim to have experienced as a result of the Kleins’ unlawful conduct.

One of the women, whose name was redacted to protect her privacy, listed 88 symptoms as grounds for compensation. The other, whose name was also redacted, listed 90.

Examples of symptoms include “acute loss of confidence,” “doubt,” “excessive sleep,” “felt mentally raped, dirty and shameful,” “high blood pressure,” “impaired digestion,” “loss of appetite,” “migraine headaches,” “pale and sick at home after work,” “resumption of smoking habit,” “shock” “stunned,” “surprise,” “uncertainty,” “weight gain” and “worry.”

We do well here to reflect on just how bizarre this situation is, because it illustrates the perilous extent to which this country has abandoned the principles and virtues on which it was founded. In other words, it shows how far we’ve departed from reality. Take note—the list of adverse symptoms is not a description of what the Kleins experienced as a result of all they have been through. Instead, the Kleins are being blamed and held responsible for causing Rachel and Laurel to experience them—all because Aaron and Melissa turned down their request for a cake! Significantly, no doctor appeared at the hearing to validate Rachel’s and Laurel’s claims. This truly is unreal!

The Kleins still have a sense of humor, but they are dead serious about their convictions about marriage. Moreover, they have no hatred for those who disagree with them.

I was reminded of the Klines’ ordeal this week—and just how strange a world we now live in—as I watched what took place, and continues to unfold, on the political stage.

Item one: A ten-year old video was made public in which Donald Trump, speaking privately, made lewd and sexually inappropriate comments about women. Surely his statements cannot be defended in any way, and Trump apologized for making them. Yet, among Trump’s harshest critics were secularists, many of whom are Democrats, “who defended the abusive and disgusting behavior of Bill Clinton, not when he was a private citizen but when he was a sitting president.” These same people also have for decades belittled those of us who sought to uphold character and moral standards as important for our nation’s leaders. Notable establishment Republicans joined them; they too were horrified over Trump’s remarks—yet they and their kind repeatedly have told the Republican base not to focus on moral values or moral issues.

On a side note, we have seen another response from a different group. Several prominent evangelical leaders, while condemning Trump’s remarks, also warned Christians about the ominous consequences of sitting out this election, and of the dire consequences of a Clinton presidency. Here are links the reactions of Tony Perkins, Dr. James Dobson (also go here), and Franklin Graham. Especially noteworthy are the remarks of Christian writer and radio talk show host Eric Metaxas. (Also go here).


I do not condone nor defend Donald Trump’s terrible comments made 11 years ago. They are indefensible and awful. I’m sure there are other misdeeds in his past, although as Jesus said, “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” I am, however, more concerned about America’s future than Donald Trump’s past. I wonder how Bill Clinton’s language stands up in private.…Hillary scares me to death.
Dr. James Dobson


Writing in the Federalist, Margot Anderson made a point to condemn the pious rhetoric of Republicans who apparently only recently have discovered morality. She didn’t hesitate to bring up the moral issue of abortion in pushing back against them. Good for her!

The chief offense Trump is being accused of is “objectifying women,” i.e. denying their dignity and humanity. But isn’t abortion the ultimate objectification of a human being? Abortion treats human life as a disposable clump of cells.…

During last week’s vice presidential debate, Hillary Clinton running mate Tim Kaine defended a woman’s “right” to seek an abortion, even a late-stage one. There was nary a peep—no screeching for his removal from the ticket or even calling for his excommunication from the Catholic Church. Apparently, it is far less reprehensible to defend the killing of human life in public than to speak like a boor in private. (One can’t help but wonder if Trump would have gotten off easier for shooting someone on Fifth Avenue.)

Anderson goes on to write about Hillary Clinton’s defense of her husband’s inappropriate sexual behavior and her publicly maligning half of Trump’s supporters by saying they were in a “basket of deplorables.” She also speaks of criminal activity on the part of Hillary Clinton, namely her use of a private server to send classified information. These have been actions and remarks presented in public; whereas Trump made his remarks, bad as they were, in private.

This isn’t partisan; Anderson doesn’t spare Republicans, or even Donald Trump. She does, however, seek to bring perspective and balance to the discussion. Here are her concluding paragraphs.

As has often been said, the people in a democracy get the leaders they deserve. We are a coarsened culture with vulgarity in every popular art form and crassness in public discourse. It is not so shocking that our current presidential candidates are rough and unscrupulous, as unfortunate as that is.

Yet we have far greater moral issues facing our citizenry, such as abortion-on-demand. Instead of focusing on real problems, sanctimonious Republicans care more about appearing pious and politically correct. Rather than pushing back against the provocateurs of identity politics, the elite Right is adopting their vernacular. In so doing, they minimize and detract from matters that deserve genuine moral outrage.

The point here is how convoluted society has become. Fasten your seat belt. We’re getting started.

Item two:

The left actually trashed the women who were the victims of Bill Clinton’s unwanted sexual advances. This trashing is not new; they did the same thing when Bill Clinton was president. In response to the release of the video, Trump held a news conference before the second presidential debate. Joining him were Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, and Paula Jones, each of whom has a story to tell of an unwanted sexual advance from Bill Clinton. Broaddrick even says he raped her. Kathy Shelton also was present. As a 12-year old she was raped, and the lawyer who defended her predator in 1975 was Hillary Clinton. More on Shelton in a moment.

On the Monday, October 10 broadcast of The View, Joy Behar suggested that with regard to the first three women, Hillary Clinton should have said, “I would like to apologize to those tramps that have slept with my husband.” The next day, she apologized, but others who made disparaging comments did not. The women Behar had maligned had pushed back regarding Behar’s “tramp” comment.

As the show unfolded, its hosts were dumbfounded that conservatives would blame Hillary Clinton for Bill’s inappropriate and at times predatory sexual behavior. Yet conservatives don’t do this at all. Rather, they say Hillary is at fault for “lashing out at the women in question repeatedly over time.”

Earlier on Monday’s show, Whoppi Goldberg indicated, falsely, that the women appearing with Trump at the news conference really weren’t injured parties: “Several of those women slept with him knowing he was a married man … [Hillary Clinton] was the victim in this…the person to whom dirty was done.”

On Monday’s Bill Press Show, Representative Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), a Clinton supporter, “described the Bill Clinton accusers who had attended the previous night’s debate as ‘a bunch of women, not looking their best, perhaps looking much better, you know, 40 years ago, to present them before the debate, for what purpose?’” Norton also said she “‘almost felt sorry for’ these ‘middle aged-looking women, who were apparently young women, who Bill Clinton hit on.’”

Isn’t all of this astounding? If the left isn’t trying to make the victims look like the predator and the predator look like the victims, then what are they doing? Eerily but unmistakably—and not coincidently—it reminds us of Aaron and Melissa Klein’s nightmare.

Item three:

Kathy Shelton was 12 years old when she was raped, and two years later, when she was 14, the case went to trial. Hillary Clinton defended the accused rapist, Thomas Alfred Taylor. He was convicted, but in the end he spent only a few months in jail. Reporter Jeff Dunetz writes,

Court records show, Ms. Clinton questioned the sixth grader’s honesty and invented a claim that the girl made false accusations in the past. Hillary also portrayed the girl as often fantasizing and as seeking out older men’ like the rapist. In other words she made up stories to blame the young victim.

In June of 2014, The Washington Free Beacon published audio recordings of Hillary Clinton from interviews in the early 80’s. In the recordings Clinton show [sic] an almost flippant attitude about the case defending the man who raped a 12-year-old girl in her words she who she got off by attacking the evidence, including the account of the victim….

In the recording from the early 80s, Clinton laughed. Dunetz’s report includes details of the case and several videos. You can access his article here.

On October 9, 2016, the night of the second presidential debate and the night of the press conference at which she spoke, Shelton tweeted, “I may be Hillary Clinton’s 1st female victim. She ruined my life; defended my rapist & blamed me. I was 12 yrs old. Then she laughed at me.”

Again, this fits the pattern of doing everything possible to make the victim out to be the one guilty of the crime. Using a distorted sense of morality and ethics, the left has turned the country upside down.

Item four:

In the days that followed the second debate, Wikileaks released emails that proved collusion between the Clinton campaign the Department of Justice with regard to Hillary Clinton’s email scandal. Wikileaks also demonstrated through its releases that “Mrs. Clinton had [a] cozy and improper relationship with the mainstream media” (go here for some of the details). Don’t think for a New York minute the media will report this! It’s obvious why. You can learn more about these and other newsworthy items not making the mainstream news here.

In the midst of this flood of information that was—or should have been—damaging to the Clinton campaign, new allegations of sexual harassment were thrown at Donald Trump. This should not surprise us! Trump has flatly denied the allegations and has noted the clear coordination between the Clinton campaign and the media.

Don’t Miss the Lessons These Events Teach!

Several observations are in order at this point. This list will review some of the territory we’ve covered already and break new ground.

First, the very people who for years have said morality and virtue aren’t important and must be ignored are seeking to use morality and virtue against their opponents without applying it to themselves. This is utter hypocrisy.

Second, these people have the stage, the microphones, the personnel, and the means to get their message out to a society filled with people who don’t have diverse or balanced sources of information. The spokesmen are effectively using every means at their disposal to further their agenda, and they are repeating their messages relentlessly.

This reminds us that Joseph Goebbels, Adolph Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda, declared, “It would not be impossible to prove with sufficient repetition and a psychological understanding of the people concerned that a square is in fact a circle. They are mere words, and words can be molded until they clothe ideas and disguise.” These kinds of verbal gymnastics set the stage for a world in which inappropriate words are deemed far worse than abusive sexual behavior—convoluted as this idea actually is. We do well to remember that it was Bill Clinton who said, “It depends upon what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”


It would not be impossible to prove with sufficient repetition and a psychological understanding of the people concerned that a square is in fact a circle. They are mere words, and words can be molded until they clothe ideas and disguise.
Joseph Goebbels


Third, Proverbs 18:17 declares, “In a lawsuit the first to speak seems right, until someone comes forward and cross-examines.” Donald Trump is seeking to respond to the accusations being leveled against him and to present his side. He can reach some Americans through his speeches and campaign ads, but the ideas he is trying to convey are, to a very large degree, filtered through a pro-liberal, pro-Clinton media machine. This is one reason his pre-second-debate news conference featuring Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, Paula Jones, and Kathy Shelton was strategically brilliant. It forced the media to cover the statements of those who had been abused and mistreated by the Clintons.

Fourth, because society has listened to the left’s diatribes against virtue and morality for decades, it no longer has any objective standard by which to judge its own behavior, let alone any leader or prospective leader. Note here how judging or evaluating messages is essential if we are to maintain an independent and free society.

Fifth, without any objective standard of morality, a society is a sitting duck, pliable and malleable, open to being persuaded to believe everything they hear from those who have the loudest voice and the most pervasive message.

Please take note: In the fourth and fifth principles we find the most important lessons of this week’s post. We may summarize these as follows.

When people in a society are taught they can believe anything, they will believe anything! Only acceptance of and an adherence to objective moral standards can guard against tyrannical manipulation.

In the sixties, seventies, and early eighties, Christian philosopher Francis Schaeffer warned against the scenario we now face—and he saw it coming. In addition to the statement we have used as an introductory quote for this article, Schaeffer said, “If there are no absolutes by which to judge society, then society is absolute.”

I realize there are well-meaning people who can think of many reasons not to vote for Donald Trump; but honestly, as flawed as Trump is, it is difficult for me to see how any or even all of these outweigh the urgent need to keep Hillary Clinton from becoming president. I also realize that if the Democrat propaganda machine fails and Hillary Clinton is prevented from becoming president, we still have a great many foundational problems as a country.

As we have said many times before at Word Foundations, we need to rediscover and realign ourselves and our society to the principles upon which this nation was founded. These include but are not limited to the Founders’ perspective on rights and liberty. They also include the Founders’ understanding of marriage and the family; even today many Americans still believe what nature and the Bible teach about these institutions. Moreover, these principles include what nature and the Bible teach about the unique value of human life (also go here).

Regardless of who is elected president, and regardless of the outcomes of all the other races, Christians have God-given duties they must never abandon. Let’s commit to uphold the truth about life and marriage and everything else, both before and after this critical election.

It’s the only way the world will ever be turned right-side-up once more.

 

Copyright © 2016 by B. Nathaniel Sullivan. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations in this article are from the New International Version. THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Websites and videos in this article have been cited for information purposes only. No citation should be construed as an endorsement.

Updates on Efforts to Protect Privacy Rights and Religious Liberty

You’ve seen those ridiculous “Coexist” bumper stickers, right? You know, the ones where the word is spelled out using religious symbols from Christianity, Islam, Paganism, Gay rights, Judaism, and so on?

coexist-blue

I call it ridiculous because, as someone once wrote: “The C wants to kill the E, X, T, and the O. The O offers peaceful non-resistance, which will be ineffective if real trouble breaks out. The E feels like it’s been oppressed, making it intolerant of the C, the X, and the T. The I and the S are numerically irrelevant, but are just necessary to spell out the word. And the sticker is mostly directed at the T (or the Christian), who ironically poses no threat whatsoever to any of the others.”

John Stonestreet, in a BreakPoint commentary dated April 21, 2016—

Many points can be made in opposition to laws and policies that would allow transgendered individuals to use the restroom different from the one designated by their own biology. One of the strongest such arguments affirms what ought to be obvious—that these policies allow predatory men to feign having gender identity issues and invade women’s restrooms. Of course, no one should lightly dismiss the needs of someone struggling with gender identity. At the same time, we also must care about how women would feel about sharing a restroom, not just with a predatory man, but also with a biological male who identifies as a woman. Female objections to a transgendered man in the ladies’ room aren’t indications of bigotry or hate, but of the legitimate desire for privacy when using the bathroom, locker room, and shower.

Do we really need to wonder how most women would feel about a man—any man—in the women’s bathroom? For anyone who does wonder, help is available. In his most recent Internet video, You Tuber Joey Salads conducted an experiment to find out. You can watch his video here.

In writing about Salads’ experiment, Michael Cantrell observes,

Interesting how most women aren’t comfortable with the idea of going to the bathroom with a man who pretends to be a woman. Perhaps the world isn’t quite as crazy as I originally thought.

If the majority of women aren’t comfortable with transgenders using their restrooms, why are their concerns being ignored for the sake of a very small minority?

Liberals claim to be about women’s rights, yet here they are, forcing ladies to do something against their will and stripping them of their right to privacy.

The hypocrisy is astounding.

Unfortunately, a bathroom bill that would have protected privacy rights in Tennessee’s public schools was withdrawn by its key sponsor in the Tennessee House of Representatives. Rep. Susan Lynn’s action effectively killed the bill for this legislative session, although passage was far from certain. Because children are of infinite worth, one wonders why, despite fierce opposition to the proposal, the legislature and the governor were not willing to draw a line in the sand to protect students in the Volunteer State.

Meanwhile, in North Carolina and Mississippi, which passed a religious liberty law, economic threats continue to mount. The NBA has scheduled its 2017 All-Star game in Charlotte, and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is demanding changes in the law. Yet he, along with a host of other business leaders and entertainers like Bryan Adams, Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam, and Boston, are either threatening to exercise or are exercising outright the very freedoms they wish to deny those whom they disagree. So much for coexistence!

deeply-held-belief-635x635

The bathroom bill in North Carolina actually can be called a privacy rights and business rights law, because it not only protects women, but also allows private businesses to set their own bathroom policies. Even so, politicians like President Barak Obama, New York Mayor Bill de Blaiso, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, to name a few, continue to revile and mischaracterize the law. They’re even trying to punish North Carolina for it. Even Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump spoke out against it, effectively ignoring the risk to women that the law mitigates. Ted Cruz, who supports the law, criticized Trump, accusing him of giving in to political correctness.

Returning to the debate in Tennessee, we note that the Obama administration said it was pleased the state’s bathroom privacy law (of course, the administration didn’t call it that) had failed to pass. This shouldn’t surprise us, since, as we noted in a previous post, the Justice Department filed a “statement of interest” in court that argued Title IX requires that transgendered individuals be allowed to use whichever restroom they choose. In the case, a Virginia school district had dared to limit access to its restrooms on the basis of students’ biological sex. The lower court ruled against the administration’s arguments, but the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals now says the lawsuit against the Virginia school district may proceed.

It was a 3-judge panel at the 4th Circuit that made this decision, with 2 of the 3 judges having been appointed by President Obama. According to one report, this panel ignored the plain language of Title IX, just as federal bureaucrats also have ignored it in recent months. In his End of Day email report to his supporters dated April 20, 2016, Gary Bauer wrote that

the federal court did not decide the issue. But their 2-to-1 opinion does allow a lawsuit against a Virginia school district to proceed, suggesting that gender specific bathrooms represent some form of unconstitutional sex discrimination.

The ACLU and other left-wing groups are applauding the decision as “a complete vindication of the Education Department’s interpretation of Title IX.” But the Obama Education Department’s interpretation is utter nonsense!

Title IX was passed by Congress in 1972 to eliminate blatant sex discrimination between men and women in educational opportunities. No one in 1972 had transgenderism in mind.

But that is how Obama’s radical bureaucrats are interpreting—rewriting—the law today. And left-wing judicial activists on the courts are going along with it.

Fortunately, Judge Paul Niemeyer’s dissenting opinion made the case for common sense. He wrote:

This holding completely tramples on all universally accepted protections of privacy and safety that are based on the anatomical differences between the sexes. . . This unprecedented holding overrules custom, culture, and the very demands inherent in human nature for privacy and safety, which the separation of such facilities is designed to protect. More particularly, it also misconstrues the clear language of Title IX and its regulations. And finally, it reaches an unworkable and illogical result. [You can read more from Judge Niemeyer’s dissent here.]

Where is the left’s concern for the privacy rights of young girls?

Are you prepared to accept boys using your daughter’s bathrooms and locker rooms at your local public school? Are you prepared to share a public bathroom with someone of the opposite sex?

Are you willing to accept this assault on common sense?

The good news is that there is some indication that a great many people aren’t willing; this evidenced by the fact that when Target Stores announced a company-wide bathroom policy that allows biological men in women’s restrooms, and vice versa, a backlash began. Go here to read a handful of the negative reactions to Target’s guidelines.

Encouraging its readers to push back against the retail giant, an article at www.barbwire.com stated, “Clearly, Target’s dangerous new policy poses a danger to wives and daughters. We think many customers will agree. And we think the average Target customer is willing to pledge to boycott Target stores until it makes protecting women and children a priority.” On the American Family Association’s website, tens of thousands of angry consumers expressed their opposition and pledged to participate in a boycott.

This indeed is good news, but we’re actually not ready to leave Gary Bauer’s statements just yet. Read them again. Note that Mr. Bauer said, among other things, that the court is rewriting the law. It is critical that we understand this point—and that courts are not authorized to make or rewrite laws. Only the legislative branch of government pass laws. Judges are charged with the task of interpreting them.

Watch legal expert and Family Action Council of Tennessee’s David Fowler explain  how 2 members of the 3-judge panel are rewriting the law. If you don’t remember anything else from this post, remember what Mr. Fowler says here. Fowler makes some comments that are specific to Tennessee, but that doesn’t take anything away from his case that the ruling is unlawful. Everyone in America needs to understand why.

Members of the judicial branch will get away violating the Constitution in this way only if we permit them to do so. Yet, if we are to succeed in holding them accountable, we first must comprehend how we got to the place in our culture where we are debating whether or not we will allow men in women’s restrooms, and why, for millions of people, this issue isn’t a “no-brainer.”

We’ll explore this question next week. Stay tuned, and stay in prayer for our nation. America needs prayer perhaps now more than ever!

Copyright © 2016 by B. Nathaniel Sullivan. All Rights Reserved.

For further reading:

Turning American Law Upside Down for the Transgendered by David French

Capitulation on Religious Liberty Laws Is Shameful and Shortsighted by the editors of National Review