“A Revolutionary Parable about Redemption through Sacrifice(s)”

Che` Guevara, Playa Giron and Social Justiceche-guevara-albertokorda-1950

“A Revolutionary Parable about Redemption through Sacrifice(s)”

By Peter C. Coker

 Increasingly — especially in the last five or six years – I awaken to discover that overnight, the earth’s axis has been nudged-over a half-a-degree or so, to a “Bizzaro” world-order. In a way, it reminds me a little-bit of the chaos of the 1960’s. This, of course could be demonstrated in a number of ways, but the focus here will be on the 60’s era real life character, Ernesto “Che” Guevara, and his especially inspiring way of ruthlessly achieving social justice. Guevara periodically gains renewed popular notoriety, as he has lately, so revisiting his philosophy and life seems worthwhile…even as the earth wobbles.

CHE[1]Ernesto “Che” Guevara, was born in Argentina (1928-1967); was later instrumental in the Cuban Revolution, and died by execution in Bolivia. Che` was a physician, author, anti-freedom guerrilla commander, and Cuban government official. He was married twice and had a total of five children. Che` was a major figure along with Fidel Castro in the Cuban communist-revolution.gallery10[1]

Che`s family had Spanish and Irish roots and were leftist in their political leanings. Che` was very intelligent and became well versed in Marxist ideology. As a young medical student Guevara studied Marxist-Leninism and sought out leftist-studies in “class-struggle” and international world-revolution. Che` traveled throughout South America and became more radicalized by the extreme poverty, hunger and disease he encountered in his travels. Being young, intellectually naive and leaning towards a radical leftist political ideology, Guevara naturally saw the United States of America as the main cause of South America’s woes. Not, of course, the inept, corrupt nature of many Latin American governments.

Liberal godsWhen his travels took him to Mexico City, Guevara met with Raul and Fidel Castro and joined their (communist-led) 26th of July Movement, in Cuba. In Cuba, Guevara quickly rose to second-in-command, under Fidel Castro, proving to be an inspirational leader. At times, Che` also proved to be a keen military strategist. As a military commander Guevara was a harsh disciplinarian who was known to shoot deserters and execute a number of men suspected of being informers, traitors, or spies. One biographer in reading Guevara’s notes and diary accounts noted that Che` had a “remarkable detachment to violence,” referring to an execution as being a “revolutionary parable about redemption through sacrifice.”

Even after Castro and Che`s military coup proved victorious, their democrat communistStalinist influenced regime continued with: executions, book burnings, and the jailing and torturing of thousands of women and journalists. Further, many Cuban citizens were being starved and beaten in pest infested torture chambers for the crime of quoting the U.N. Declaration of Rights. Among these dangerous citizens were Cuban librarians and independent booksellers. Librarians and booksellers were convicted of the god-awful crime of stocking some of the world’s best-selling books.

skulls-khmer rougeChe` was then appointed by the Cuban Ministry of Justice to oversee the trials of the so-called “war criminals” and carry-out the death penalty executions. “Revolutionary Justice” was to be exacted against those considered to be traitors. The trials and executions of these “traitors” lasted for five months and had reached 16,000 when Che` boasted in his speech to the U.N., on Dec. 9, 1964; “Certainly we execute! And we will continue executing as long as it is necessary!” (The number 16,000 comes from the book by French scholars; The Black Book of Communism). For many Cuban exiles, Che` rightly earned the nickname; the “Butcher of La Cabana.”

[“Judicial evidence is an archaic bourgeois detail. We execute (jail, torture, and steal) based on revolutionary conviction.” (Che` Guevara, Feb. 13, 1959)]gallery3[1]

It was generally acknowledged by practically everyone, friends and foes alike, that Guevara had become an extremely “hardened man” who had no qualms about the death penalty. If the only way to “defend the revolution” was to execute its enemies he would not be swayed by humanitarian or political arguments.” As Che` Guevara dogmatically stated it: “We reject any peaceful approach! …Violence is inevitable! To establish Socialism, rivers of blood must flow! …‘The victory of Socialism’ is well worth millions of atomic (bomb) victims!” “My nostrils dilate while savoring the acrid odor of gunpowder and blood. Crazy with fury I will stain my rifle red while slaughtering any surrendered enemy that falls in my hands!”…In regards to the United States of America, Che` noted:”The U.S. is the great enemy of mankind! Against those hyenas there is no option but extermination. We must keep our hatred against them alive and fan it to paroxysm (sudden emotions to actions of rage)!”

Ikilled[1]Lest you think Guevara’s bloodthirsty rampages were limited to so-called military criminals (and the U.S.A.) consider the example of Rigoberto Hernandez, who was seventeen years old. “Rigo,” as he was called, was the janitor in a Havana high school and was also retarded. Nevertheless, Che`s soldiers dragged him from his jail cell, gagged him, tied him to a stake, where the firing squad shot repeatedly and killed him. His single-mother had not only pleaded his case to officials, but proved to his prosecutors that her only son was not “a CIA agent planting bombs.”

Not only did Fidel Castro and Che` Guevara kill and torture the helpless and retarded, they also jailed, starved and tortured some 35,150 Cuban women for so-called “political crimes.” Some of these Cuban women Che` supposedly found guilty of “feeding and hiding bandits,” which was his term for Cuban resistors who took up arms to fight Guevara’s theft of their land. Che` not only had great competence at publically “Talking the talk,” but, also excelled tremendously at murdering bound, gagged, and blindfolded men and boys as well as torturing women. You could say he was gender-blind when it came to imprisonment and torture (so-cool, huh?).

Also, stunningly, according to the Paris-based organization, Reporters Without Borders, Fidel’s and Che`s regime holds the distinct honor of jailing and torturing the most journalists per-capita on earth. (Their mother’s must have been very proud!)

The true “freedom fighters” of Cuba were not the communist inspired criminals and thugs led by Fidel Castro, Raul Castro, and Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. The real freedom fighters were those fighting against these tyrannical fascist thugs. The real freedom fighters led by San Ramon were known as “La Brigada 2506, organized and trained by CIA man, Grayston Lynch, a veteran of Omaha Beach, Battle of the Bulge, and Heartbreak Ridge. Lynch and his team trained a cross-section of Cuban society including: doctors, farmers, college students, common laborers, whites, blacks, mulattoes, aristocrats and their chauffeurs.

These freedom-fighters were unfortunately those who eventually lost to Castro’s troops. They did not lose because they were smaller in number or lacked a burning morale; they lost because, our beloved Camelot, President Kennedy (JFK), left them hanging without any of the support and supplies (including air support) that had been promised to them before they engaged the enemy. This debacle was called the Bay of Pigs (fiasco) and the Bay of Pigs freedom-fighters fought heroically up to and until they completely ran out of food, water, and ammunition. They fought like tigers even though they were delirious from fatigue, lack of sleep, and hunger. They fought so heroically and ferociously that the Castro brothers and Che` Guevara assumed they were facing an army of 20,000, instead of the actual 1,400 combatants. San Ramon and La Brigada’s Cuban freedom-fighters had inflicted over 3,000 casualties against Fidel and Che`s Soviet-armed troops of 21,000, until President Kennedy pulled the plug on the whole operation.

President John F. Kennedy’s criminal, immoral actions of pulling the plug on the operation in the midst of the battle insured the defeat of the freedom fighters against Castro’s troops. When Admiral Arleigh Burke of the Joints Chief of Staff confronted President Kennedy, JFK responded by saying, “we can’t get involved in this.” Burke exploded, “We put those Cuban boys in there, Mr. President! By God, we are involved!” As Marine Col. Jack Hawkins noted; “They fought magnificently and were not defeated. They were abandoned on the beach without the supplies and support promised by their sponsor, the government of the United States.” Grayston Lynch later wrote, “Tears flooded my eyes…for the first time in my 37 years, I was ashamed of my country.”

 Ironically, in August 1961, during an economic conference of the Organization of American States in Punta del Este, Uruguay, Che Guevara sent a note of “gratitude” to United States President John F. Kennedy through Richard N. Goodwin, a young secretary of the White House. It read: “Thanks for Playa Girón (Bay of Pigs). Before the invasion, the revolution was shaky. Now it’s stronger than ever.”

The following year, Che`Guevara played a key role in bringing Soviet nuclear-armed missiles to Cuba at the height of cold-war hostilities. In October 1962 the “Cuban Missile Crisis” brought the world to the brink of nuclear war. Guevara later told British communist news correspondent Sam Russell, “if the missiles had been under Cuban control, they would have fired them off” (at the U.S.).

By the end of 1964 Che` Guevara had emerged as a revolutionary statesman of world stature promoting the gospel of global socialist liberation.

Economic Justice?

Ernesto Che` Guevara had previously, in January 1959, given a significant speech on the “social ideas of rebel army” in which he declared establishing agrarian land reform. Guevara declared that (forced) land redistribution would bring about social justice for all. Agrarian Reform Law (INRA) crafted by Guevara limited the size of all farms to no more than 1,000 acres. Any land holdings exceeding this limit would be appropriated to peasants in 67 acre parcels or held as state-run communes. The law also said sugar plantations (Cuba’s largest and most lucrative crop) could not be owned by foreigners. To facilitate INRA, Guevara established a 100,000 person militia to help the government seize control and redistribute land holdings. When Castro and Guevara’s government began land seizures it subsequently failed to compensate land owners as stipulated in the reform law.

On a side note: Che` Guevara’s land redistribution scheme was somewhat similar to the U.S. government’s land redistribution policy (Reservations) to the Native American Indians. The main difference was that the U.S. government’s policy was probably more generous. Yet, we now view (and rightly so) the Reservation “system” as a bad alternative for the future of the Indians. Indian tribes were basically put on welfare and given land portions (redistribution) of about 160 acres for each Indian household. Tribal communities could also sell back unused portions of their land (for millions!) to the federal government. The reservation system, though, did not work well for the Indians. Soon, their “spirit” was broken; they were impoverished, and ultimately became almost completely dependent on the U.S. government for their livelihood. It remains one of the dark spots of American history. The main positive was that Indian tribes stopped their constant warring with each other and stopped killing and terrorizing American citizens and immigrant settlers.

So, with the Indian Reservation system as an example of welfare and land redistribution, how is it that similar socialist policies (system) in other situations, such as the ‘Revolution in Cuba,’ are not viewed with the same disdain? Is it just the so-called good intentions of the facilitators that are supposed to make such policies work? Do we measure economic successes by the results or by the good intentions of the planners? Or do these failed policies and others like them naturally destroy the “spirit” of those it proposes to help – killing creativity, motivation, and fostering ever-increasing hopelessness?

Ernesto Che` Guevara, by his own account, was philosophically and ideologically inspired by Karl Marx. Guevara professed that the Laws of Marxism were present in the events of the Cuban Revolution. When enacting and advocating Cuban policy, Che` cited Marx’s inspiration by saying; “There are truths so evident, so much a part of people’s knowledge, that it is now useless to discuss them;”…” “practical revolutionaries simply fulfill laws foreseen by Marx, the scientist.”

["The merit of Marx is that he suddenly produces a qualitative change in the history of social thought. He interprets history, understands its dynamic, predicts the future, but in addition to predicting it (which would satisfy his scientific obligation), he expresses a revolutionary concept: the world must not only be interpreted, it must be transformed. Man ceases to be the slave and tool of his environment and converts himself into the architect of his own destiny."]

— Che Guevara, Notes for the Study of the Ideology of the Cuban, October 1960.

Guevara, as a philosophical dialectical materialist (atheist), called his special brand of revolutionary hatred, ‘love;’ “something spiritual that would transcend all borders.” Che` said, “the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love” and beckoning on all revolutionaries to “strive every day so that this love of living humanity will be transformed into acts that serve as examples”, thus becoming “a moving force.” In this Che` was correct; he succeeded in transferring his revolutionary ‘gospel of hate’ across borders. Certain revolutions are guided by a pursuit of liberty, righteousness and love; but revolutions like Che’s, guided by “dialectical materialism,” are anti-theistic and therefore employ the fruits of envy, jealousy, self-righteousness, class struggle, ignorance and hate. Cuba became more and more dependent upon the Soviet Union and Che` then began to be somewhat disillusioned with Soviet policies. Che` then became more favorable to Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong. Guevara strongly supported communist North Viet-Nam in the Vietnam War. He internationally encouraged other developing nations to create “many Vietnams.” North Vietnam later (1967-1968) sought out help from Cuba on their expertise in torture. Fidel and Che`s torture tactics were known to the North Vietnamese and they sought out Cuba’s help for their “Cuba Project,” for torturing American POW’s (Prisoners of War).

As Col. Jack Bomar testified regarding fellow POW, Earl Cobeil: “He had been tortured for days and days and days. His hands were almost severed…He had bamboo in his shins. All kinds of welts up and down all over; his face was bloody. Then ‘Fidel(s) (agents) began to beat him with a fan belt.” Fidel’s torture agents did their training at the Cu Loc POW camp in southwest Hanoi using about 20 American POW’s. “The difference between the Vietnamese and ‘Fidel’ was that once the Vietnamese got what they wanted they let up, at least for a while,” testified fellow POW Captain Ray Vohden USN. “Not so with the Cubans.” Though Che` Guevara had been executed by this time, his and Fidel’s tactics and fingerprints were all over the “Cuba Project” training camp in Hanoi, North Vietnam.

In 1965 Che` Guevara left his positions in Cuba’s government and dropped out of public view. He travelled to the Congo in Africa (changing his name to Ramon Benitez) to offer his talents in the ongoing conflict in the Congo. Che` put his solidarity with the Marxist, anti-Mobutu, Simba Movement. But, he soon became disillusioned with their lack of dedication. After leaving the Congo, Guevara lived clandestinely in Dar es Salaam and then in Prague to compile his memoirs. Che` then went back to Cuba secretly for a brief visit with his family. From there, in 1966, Guevara reportedly met secretly with representatives of Mozambique’s independence movement in Dar es Salaam to offer his assistance. His offer to the independence movement in Mozambique was ultimately rejected by them.

Che` then altered his appearance, changed his name to Adolfo Mena Gonzalez, and headed to La Paz, Bolivia in late 1966. From La Paz, Guevara travelled to the rural southeast region of the country to form a new guerrilla army, the “National Liberation Army of Bolivia.” Fighting and killing just seemed to be in Che`s blood. But, his agitations were always cloaked in “revolution,” fighting for the poor, fighting against imperialism, or a variety of other self-aggrandizing euphemisms. He was, in his own eyes, a global freedom fighter. But, he may well have been a self-glorified serial killer using “worldwide-revolution” and “liberation” to gratify and justify his own lust to agitate, create war, and kill. Che` Guevara’s plan for fomenting revolution in Bolivia ultimately failed as most citizens there were not interested in Che`s revolutionary war tactics. Che`s own preference for creating military confrontations rather than engage in political debate, compromise, and political processes, revealed his own desires for creating totalitarian rule by self-appointed elitists over that of democratic processes and true citizen representation. The kind of representation Che` offered was more like; “you will all do as I say, because I know what is best for everybody.” If you think Che` was advancing freedom and liberty, you would be mistaken. He was not a politically-active version of reggae icon, Bob Marley.

One look at current day Cuba should alert any rational half-wit that the economics of dialectical materialism is a complete and utter fraud and failure. From the start, Fidel and Che` attached themselves to an ideology that ultimately produces: national de-capitalization, fascism, totalitarianism, despair, poverty, dependence on other nations, and irreversible societal decay. Blaming their own woes and failures on American imperialism, or the Soviet Union “forgetting Marx,” is an outright denial of Castro’s and Guevara’s own personal failures to discern that they had originally embraced a truly immoral, fraudulent philosophy and ideology. Che`s determination and unwavering dedication are extremely admirable, but his philosophy and ideology were ‘dead on arrival’ as a philosophy of death, destruction, and hopelessness. As economist Thomas Sowell has noted regarding such historic philosophies:

“Where the creators of wealth receive, on average, somewhat more than the passive beneficiaries, the latter may feel that the former have benefitted at their expense, “exploiting” them in some undefined way, rather than seeing that wealth-creation is not a zero-sum creation.  Accusations of this sort have been hurled at the Chinese in Southeast Asia, the Indians of East Africa, and numerous other groups who have created whole new industries and higher standards of living for all, in countries around the world.  Such misconceptions about history and economics have not been confined to the unlettered masses, but have often been prevalent among the intelligentsia as well.  Indeed, intellectuals have often taken the lead in spreading such misconceptions and whipping up such resentments. Much as history has to contribute to understanding such social phenomena as wealth creation, history has itself become a target of desperate attack by those for whom the truth threatens devastating consequences to their visions, their egos, or their projects.” 1

So, please — pardon me when I see someone waving a Che` flag, or wearing a Che` hat or t-shirt; because, to me, it is like identifying with and supporting someone like the 60’s, ostensible “hippie,” Charles Manson and his cultish-gang of wacky misfit killers. Che` Guevara, Fidel and Raul Castro did far worse than the Manson Family by thousands upon thousands.

After this unholy trinity of “revolutionary” terrorist thugs gained power in Cuba, thousands and thousands of Cuban citizens began to flee the country and head for the United States of America. They crammed themselves into small boats and almost anything that would float to escape Cuba and hopefully make it to Florida alive. These refugees literally risked their very lives in hopes of starting new lives in the U.S.A. Many of them carried signs declaring the common refugee slogan; “Better dead than Red.” In other words, it was better to risk your life floating 90 miles across open-ocean, in hopes of landing in Florida, than remain living in communist “red” Cuba.

 *****

 Quote from Thomas Sowell’s Race and Culture: A World View; pgs. 226-227.

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Justice-Righteousness, Evil and Good

crossDoing Things in the Name of ‘Justice’ may not Producesupreme court ‘Righteousness’

By Rob Schwarzwalder

Justice is in vogue. Few virtues have obtained the cultural cache than justice now possesses (just ask anyone in the pro-chastity movement). Compelling books, valuable Christian ministries, and innumerable blogs proliferate in its name.

Yet the term seems overused, popping up whenever an advocateoccupy-3 wants an ally. The indignation of standing for a cause that is substantively or reputedly just, fills one with a gratifying sense of rectitude. That’s why justice is used as a trump card to validate everything from rescuing children from human trafficking to supporting same-sex “marriage.”

occupy-5Standing for “justice” in our time no longer means solely such things as opposing slavery, protecting the unborn, or defending the rights of conscience. It has been co-opted by everyone with a cause, however odious it might be, because to claim justice for your side, at least if it is culturally acceptable, is to gain a rhetorical advantage that’s hard to fight.

Justice is an attribute of God (cf. Deuteronomy 32:4). Understoodolivet discourse correctly, it’s an essential Judeo-Christian character quality. What is interesting is that in Hebrew, the word for justice (tzedek) is also the same word for righteousness. When many of us think of the latter; to mind come images of stolid, unbending, “self-righteous” people who are quick to condemn and eager to find fault.

That’s not the biblical vision of the term. The New Testament teaches that Christians are persons who have been declared morally perfect in God’s sight, and thus worthy of a relationship with Him, because Jesus Christ has imputed to them His moral perfection – His righteousness.

In terms of behavior, to live righteously means to be a person of moral honor in character and conduct. It is the purity of the inner life demonstrated in external conduct. Of course, many non-Christians practice righteousness/justice in their daily lives and in the causes they support. All of us bear the image of God and have His law written on our hearts. From our consciences can flow genuine outrage at evil and true delight in what is good.

Yet righteousness and justice have a synthetic relationship. One cannot be righteous or live righteously without also being just. One cannot practice justice in his dealings with people if he has an unrighteous spirit.

Too often, though, some Evangelicals seem eager to make a distinction between the two, eagerly standing for real or perceived justice/fairness and only mumbling about the need for righteous character and behavior. For example, when an Evangelical public figure announces her homosexuality, there is much ink spilled about treating her fairly, about being non-condemnatory in our attitudes and about treating her with, as it were, a merciful justice.

That’s a good thing. But what about her compliance with biblical standards of right conduct? We sometimes seem so afraid of renouncing sin that we ignore it in order to be kind. Or “just.” After all, who wants to be unfair, to be unjust?

Emphasizing justice over righteousness is theologically fraudulent: It cannot honestly be done. Canadian pastor and theologian Joe Boot warns against “(importing) cultural fads” such that “the end result is a hybrid abstraction that, in the name of being biblical, reads humanistic views of justice into Christianity.”

Many Christians rather unselfconsciously do what Dr. Boot forewarns: the most radical causes, veneered with “justice,” become attractive and even motivating. Failed redistributive economic policies are advanced as “just,” even though they do more harm than good. Extreme environmental causes are held-up as matters of justice, even though the science supporting them is dubious and their link to scriptural imperatives is at best tenuous.

In the name of justice, some believers claim that same-sex “marriage” should be legalized because, well, the gays and lesbians they know are such nice, caring people and love each other genuinely. Of course many gays and lesbians are wonderful people. But marriage is about more than affection and volition. It is about complementarities and pro-creation, masculinity and femininity, biology and morphology. To deny marriage to two same-sex partners is no more unjust than denying that a man can fly by flapping his arms: He wasn’t made that way, and his desire does not eliminate his incapacity.

In Terence Rattigan’s play “The Winslow Boy,” the character of Sir Robert Morton, a reserved, arrogant, but honorable man, weeps in court when his client is vindicated. Explaining his burst of emotion, the usually buttoned-up barrister has this exchange with his main antagonist:

Sir Robert Morton: “I wept today because right had been done.”
Catherine Winslow: “Not justice?”
Sir Robert Morton: “No, not justice. Right. Easy to do justice. Very hard to do right.”

Christians would do well to ponder this. Rattigan is saying that it is easier to right a wrong, to “do justice,” than to do right in the first place. Justice can also bring social approval; doing right can earn one social enmity, as right is never fully in fashion in a fallen world.

Followers of Jesus cannot minimize the one and exalt the other without also eviscerating some essential teaching of God’s Word. He calls us to stand for justice and to do right. Neither command is optional.

Justice and righteousness are also interdependent; one cannot be had without the other. Justice without righteousness is only moral self-importance; righteousness without justice is moral arrogance and ready condemnation.

Being righteous means saying yes to some things which our culture disdains and no to others it rewards. Whether discussing gay rights or religious freedom, the sanctity of personhood within the womb or the corrosive, debasing nature of all pornography, staying true to Scripture and natural law brings accusations of hatred, bigotry – and injustice. (Remember, Satan is the accuser of the faithful).

Let such accusations come. God is unmoved by name-calling. Are we? After all, it’s easy to do “justice.” Very hard to do right.

*****

Rob Schwarzwalder is senior vice president of the Family Research Council. Prior to serving at FRC, Rob was a chief of staff for two Members of Congress.

 

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“Celebrating Sin for the Sake of Unity?”

Catholic Lay Leaders: Cardinal Dolan Should Not Leadgay parade Parade With Pro-Gay Group

By Michael W. Chapman

September 2014

  (CNSNews.com) – Some prominent Catholic leaders expressed disappointment and opposition to New York Archdiocese Cardinal Timothy Dolan agreeing to serve as grand marshal of the 2015 St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which will include an openly pro-homosexual contingent, and stressed that the cardinal should resign from the ceremonial post.

God-Make-Gays“You don’t honor a saint by encouraging a sin,” said Phil Lawler, the editor and founder of Catholic World News, adding that if the parade has been so diluted over the years to not qualify as a “Catholic event,” then there should be “no reviewing stand outside St. Patrick’s Cathedral, no sign of Church sponsorship. Cardinal Dolan should step aside as (parade) Grand Marshal.”gay-nativity

Pat Archbold, a prominent blogger for the National Catholic Register, owned by EWTN, said that “Cardinal Dolan must publicly reject the offer to be grand marshal and encourage the organizers to cancel the parade rather than accede to the demands of NBC.”

marti grasIn an “Open Letter to Cardinal Dolan,” the Catholic Citizens of Illinois implored him “to withdraw as grand marshal of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade because of the great probability of misunderstandings, confusion and scandal among the faithful.”freedom rally

Catholic apologist Michael Voris, who runs ChurchMilitant.TV, told CNSNews.com that Cardinal Dolan’s actions were “giving enormous scandal to faithful Catholics” and, in light of other scandals in the archdiocese, he “should resign as cardinal archbishop of New York.”

Over the years, controversy has arisen over the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, held annually on March 17, because, while all people – gay or straight — were welcome to march, they were not allowed to do so under their own banner, such as a contingent of “Irish Queers” with their own banner or, back in 1993, a contingent of the Irish Lesbian and Gay Organization.

For 2015, the NYC Saint Patrick’s Day Parade committee decided to change the rules and allow certain groups to march in the parade under their own banner.  This rule change theoretically would include pro-life groups as well as pro-homosexual groups, and specifically OUT@NBCUniversal, the LGBT employee alliance at NBC, the network that broadcasts the parade.

On its website, OUT@NBCUniversal describes itself as “a volunteer organization with a goal to attract, develop and retain Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Straight Ally employees and help NBCUniversal’s businesses effectively reach the LGBTQA community. OUT@NBCUniversal attracts new employees by being visible in the local LGBT community and building a reputation as an employer of choice.”

That rule change was announced last week and on Wednesday, Sept. 3, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who oversees the archdiocese of New York and its 2.6 million Catholics, agreed to be grand marshal of the parade.

The Saint Patrick’s Day Parade Committee continues to have my confidence and support,” said Cardinal Dolan in a statement. “Neither my predecessors as Archbishop of New York nor I have ever determined who would or would not march in this parade (or any of the other parades that march along Fifth Avenue, for that matter), but have always appreciated the cooperation of parade organizers in keeping the parade close to its Catholic heritage.  My predecessors and I have always left decisions on who would march to the organizers of the individual parades.”

“As I do each year, I look forward to celebrating Mass in honor of Saint Patrick, the Patron Saint of Ireland, and the Patron Saint of this Archdiocese, to begin the feast, and pray that the parade would continue to be a source of unity for all of us,” said the cardinal.

At a Sept. 3 press conference announcing his appointment to be the Grand Marshal, Cardinal Dolan said of the committee’s rule change for specific groups, “I have no trouble with the decision at all. I think the decision is a wise one.”

Bill Donohue, head of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, said that same day, “Never in the history of New York’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade have homosexuals been barred from marching, anymore than pro-life Catholics have, but in both cases they were not permitted to have their own unit. I have been assured that the rules have been formally changed to allow both of these groups, as well as others, to march under their own banner. That being the case, there should be no controversy.”

However, there are indications that other pro-homosexual groups may participate in the parade and, said Donohue on Sept. 6, “If it gets to the point where the Catholic element is completely diluted, then I will no longer march in the parade.”

Other Catholics were not waiting to express disapproval of allowing gays to march under their own pro-homosexual banner in a parade created to honor a Catholic saint.

In an article headlined, “NY Archdiocese Should Sever Ties With St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” Phil Lawler said, “Next year there will be only one story-line of interest to the reporters who cover the annual parade in the world’s media capital: the triumph of the gay activists. Photographers will be competing for the one ‘money’ shot: the picture of the contingent from OUT@NBCUniversal marching past the reviewing stand at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, under the benign smile of Cardinal Timothy Dolan.”

“And the media will be right to concentrate on that story line, because this is a significant advance for homosexual activists, a significant retreat for the Catholic Church,” said Lawler. “A generation ago, the late Cardinal John O’Connor said that it would be impossible to include proponents of homosexuality in a Catholic event. Now they will be included ….”

“If this really is a Catholic event, it cannot include a group defined by its opposition to Church teaching,” said Lawler.  “If it is a Catholic event, forget Guinness, forget NBC, forget the hoopla, and quietly honor St. Patrick.”

But “if it is not a Catholic event,” he continued, there should be “no sign of Church sponsorship” and “Cardinal Dolan should step aside as Grand Marshal.”

Pat Archbold with the EWTN-owned National Catholic Register said, “If a parade that is meant to honor a great saint is being used to promote a sinful agenda, it should be cancelled rather than allow it to be used in such a way. It is one thing for a parade committee to fold under pressure, but it is quite another that the Cardinal Archbishop of New York would be asked to lend his name and office to the parade. Such an action can be viewed in no other way than total capitulation to gay identity groups.”

After confirming that the rules change had occurred and that Cardinal Dolan agreed to be Grand Marshall, Archbold added to his remarks the following: “Cardinal Dolan’s statement is disingenuous. The issue at hand has never been who can march in the parade. I am quite certain that gay people have always marched in the parade. What is at issue is people marching under a banner identifying themselves and promoting sin as normative.”

“The acceptance of the parade committee and the Cardinal is nothing less than the public acceptance of the normative nature of gay identity,” said Archbold. “That Cardinal Dolan’s statement clearly attempts to dissemble on this critical point is shameful, if unsurprising.”

Michael Voris of ChurchMilitant.TV told CNSNews.com that by agreeing to serve as Grand Marshal, Cardinal Dolan was “more than giving the appearance [of condoning the LGBT group]. He is actually legitimizing it. This is not a question of can a person who has same-sex attraction march in the parade. That has probably been going on since 1762 [when the parade first started]. That’s not the issue.”

 “The issue is of people saying, ‘I identify as somebody who has sex with somebody of my same sex,’” said Voris.  “And when a cardinal archbishop says, ‘that’s great,’ and you can publicly say that in a parade that is associated with Catholicism, then that blends those two worlds together and makes it look like the Catholic Church is endorsing active homosexuality.”

When asked whether Cardinal Dolan should resign as the Grand Marshal, Voris said, “I think Cardinal Dolan should resign as Cardinal Archbishop of New York, because it appears to me he has never read the Catechism or has totally disregarded it, and I maintain that either situation is impossible to maintain for a sitting archbishop. He has brought scandal after scandal after scandal to the faithful.  No such man should ever be sitting in the role of active bishop. This is just the latest [example].”

“I mean, these [pro-gay] souls, marching in this parade need spiritual help,” said Voris.  “They need spiritual guidance. They need to be assisted in regard to their eternal lives. And he’s applauding them marching into Hell. He needs to go.”

In their Sept. 5 “Open Letter to Cardinal Dolan,” the Catholic Citizens of Illinois said, “We understand your deference to those who are on the planning committee for the parade and your efforts to not be ‘judgmental.’  However, we ask you to put aside those concerns, knowing that your primary duty as Cardinal is to act as a ‘Shepherd of the Faithful,’ secondary in authority to that of the Pope.”

“We implore you to withdraw as Grand Marshall of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade because of the great probability of misunderstandings, confusion and scandal among the faithful,” they wrote“It is likely that many will believe that the Church has changed her teaching that homosexual acts are ‘disordered’ and ‘can never be approved’ and even worse, they may assume that you support such acts.  Does the statement of Jesus about scandalizing little ones no longer apply?”

“We write this letter to you as faithful Catholics and we look to you to give the example of what a true Shepherd must be,” said the Catholic Citizens of Illinois. “We offer our prayers that the Holy Spirit will inspire you and guide you in this important decision.”

CNSNews.com sent questions to Cardinal Dolan by e-mail on two occasions, asking his office for a response about the parade controversy, but the archdiocese did not respond before this story was posted.

In 1993, then-Cardinal John O’Connor explained his opposition to allowing a gay-identified group from marching in the parade, saying, “Irish Catholics have been persecuted for the sole reason that they have refused to compromise Church teaching. What others may call bigotry, Irish Catholics call principle.”

*****

Article from CNCNews.com

OGospelbbq says: How about a pro-pedophile group; a pro-swingers float; a pro-theft ring contingency; a pro ‘celebrate adultery’ group; a divorce advocacy group; or how about celebrating serial killers and murderers? And certainly celebrating a pro-prostitution subset should be included. And above all, a baby-killing clinic, float. We certainly would not want to offend any of these, would we?

 

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Obama Renews Fascist Attack on Religious Freedom…

Obama Admin Renews Attempt to Force Little Sisters of social idiotthe Poor to Obey HHS Mandate

by Steven Ertelt | Washington, DC

LifeNews.com | September 2014

 The Obama administration has renewed its attempt to force a Catholic religious order, the Little Sisters of the Poor, to comply with the HHS abortion mandate. The mandate compels religious groups to pay for birth control and drugs that may cause abortions.

The Obama administration announced today  (9/9/14) it will supreme courtcontinue its legal battle against the Little Sisters of the Poor, a religious order of nuns dedicated to serving the neediest elderly in society. This comes despite the fact that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby and another company in their bid to stop the HHS mandate.

hope and changeThe government is still trying to force the nuns to either violate their deeply held religious convictions or pay crippling fines to the IRS.

“Religious ministries in these cases serve tens of thousands of Americans, helping the poor and homeless and healing the sick. The Little Sisters of the Poor alone serve more than ten thousand of the elderly poor. These charities want to continue following their faith. They want to focus on ministry—such as sharing their faith and serving the poor—without worrying about the threat of massive IRS penalties,” said Adele Keim, Counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents the Little Sisters.washington dc

Keim told LifeNews: “The government has already exempted millions of Americans from this requirement for commercial or secular reasons, so it should certainly protect the Little Sisters for religious reasons.”

Keim said today’s developments at a federal appeals court in Denver are the latest stage in the government’s attempt to force the Little Sisters and other charities serving the needy to comply with the HHS Mandate. Although the Supreme Court previously required the Little Sisters to do nothing more than notify the government of their religious objection, the government issued new regulations last month in an attempt to circumvent the Supreme Court’s order.

The pro-life attorney explained to LifeNews that today’s action confirms the Obama administration is continuing its fight to use the Little Sisters’ health plan–provided by Christian Brothers Services–to provide potentially life-terminating drugs and devices in violation of their religious beliefs. The new regulations provide that the nuns’ approval can be written on a different form, and be routed through the government to Christian Brothers and any other plan administrators.

“Merely offering the Little Sisters a different way to violate their religion does not ease their conscience,” said Keim. “Adding another layer of paperwork is a solution that only a bureaucrat could love. The federal government has many ways to deliver contraceptives. There’s no reason it should force nuns to do that for them; the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act offer two very good reasons why it shouldn’t.”

The Little Sisters’ brief concerning the new rule will be filed later this evening. To date, approximately 90% of the courts addressing the contraception mandate—including the Supreme Court in three separate lawsuits—have protected religious ministries.

The Little Sisters of the Poor are an international Roman Catholic Congregation of women Religious founded in 1839 by St. Jeanne Jugan.  They operate homes in 31 countries, where they provide loving care for over 13,000 needy elderly persons.  Thirty of these homes are located in the United States.

“Like all of the Little Sisters, I have vowed to God and the Roman Catholic Church that I will treat all life as valuable, and I have dedicated my life to that work,” explained Sister Loraine Marie, Superior for one of the three U.S. provinces in the Congregation.  “We cannot violate our vows by participating in the government’s program to provide access to abortion inducing drugs.”

The Little Sisters will face IRS fines unless they violate their religion by hiring an insurer to provide their employees with contraceptives, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs.

“The Sisters should obviously be exempted as ‘religious employers,’ but the government has refused to expand its definition,” said Mark Rienzi, Senior Counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and lead counsel for the Little Sisters.   “These women just want to take care of the elderly poor without being forced to violate the faith that animates their work.  The money they collect should be used to care for the poor like it always has—and not to pay the IRS.

*****

Article from LifeNews.com

OGospelbbq adds: “No doubt about it – no sweeping it under the rug any longer – ‘the Obama regime’ is the most unconstitutional, most lawless, fascist-inspired-president since Franklin D. Roosevelt. Religious Freedom and Constitutionalism take(s) a back-seat with this administration’s policies and perverted agendas. Even a PEW Research Study has shown that religious freedoms have declined under the Obama Administration and continue to be in decline. All Citizens will likely pay a high price for many years to come before this can be corrected.”

 

 

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Catholic Judge Must Recuse Herself

Florida Anti School-Choice group wants Catholic Judge to Recuse Herselflollipop guild

By William Patrick  /   September 2014

  TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A group called Fund Education Now wants a state circuit court judge to recuse herself from an education dispute because she’s Catholic.

priests 1CATHOLIC CONSPIRACY: An education group is requesting presiding Judge Angela C. Dempsey recuse herself from an education funding dispute.

Citing her own independent research, Kathleen Oropeza, the group’s president, filed a motion in an ongoing lawsuit in which she explains that Judge Angela C. Dempsey is unable to be impartial because of her association with Catholic “interests” and “her relationship with Catholic doctrine.” The legal posture is the latest in a nearly five-year slog aimed at increasing public school spending.occupy and the elite

The plaintiffs, an assembly of activist groups and private individuals, allege state government has failed in its constitutional duty to provide enough funding to establish a high-quality public education system. As a result, student performance has suffered, they say.

“This suit is to redress the deprivation of rights and privileges secured to plaintiffs by Article IX, Section 1 of Florida’s Constitution.”

picasso anti fascismOropezo’s distrust of Dempsey stems from a categorical opposition to privately funded school choice scholarships, or vouchers, that afford economically disadvantaged children an opportunity to leave traditional public schools for private schools — many of which are Catholic.

“I do not believe Judge Dempsey can be impartial in determining whether Florida’s private voucher programs are unconstitutional, and I believe that she should no longer serve as the judge to decide the issues in this lawsuit,” Oropeza concludes.

As evidence, Oropeza points to Dempsey’s membership and board service with Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida, a socially active ministry, and a past speaking engagement at a Leon County private Catholic school that happens to accept tax credit scholarships for poor students.

Other alleged disqualifying factors outlined in the court document include an amicus brief filed by the Florida Catholic Conference — a group Dempsey has no direct affiliation with — relating to a previously failed attempt to establish a school voucher program.

Oropeza further says her “discover(y) of a Catholic strategy for saving Catholic education through Florida-style Opportunity Scholarships,” and a television news report indicating church cardinals and bishops were pushing vouchers led her to file the motion. “Had I been aware of this relationship, I would have moved to disqualify her before she ruled in my case,” Oropeza said.

Despite her rational, Oropeza closed with a disclaimer: ““I do not base this motion on Judge Dempsey’s religious beliefs, but rather on the positions of the organizations with which she is affiliated.”

In response, state lawyers rejected the motion and said it was not “objectively reasonable.”

“There’s nothing about these third party positions that could shed any light on Judge Dempsey’s own ability to fairly and impartially preside over the case,” the state responded.

The lawsuit is one of several ongoing legal challenges by various organizations, including the Florida teachers union and the state school boards association, to increase education spending and eliminate privately funded voucher programs.

 *****

William Patrick

William Patrick covers government waste, fraud and abuse for Watchdog.org’s Florida bureau. His work has appeared on numerous media websites, including Fox News and the Drudge Report.

wpatrick@watchdog.org

 

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Obama Expands Loophole to Fend-Off Whistleblowers

Transparently Bad: U.S. Whistleblowers feel Blowbackhope and change

President Obama has stymied federal whistleblowers by expanding the “sensitive jobs loophole.”

By Kenric Ward | Watchdog.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Federal employees who expose government waste, fraud and abuse are having a tough time in the — “most transparent administration in history.”

how to thinkRobert MacLean, a former air marshal, told a House subcommittee Tuesday that managers at the Transportation Security Administration “thumb their nose” at whistleblower protection laws.

MacLean, who complained that air marshals were improperly grounded by the TSA, is taking his termination to the U.S. Supreme Court after losing a series of lopsided proceedings at the agency. He said the TSA branded him “an organizational terrorist.”lennon-dylan

Robert Van Boven, former director of a Veterans Affairs facility in Texas, said, “The (bureaucratic) culture fights transparency and degrades whistleblowers.”Mad Mag

The medical doctor was fired after alleging “fraudulent billing and ghost employees who didn’t help one single veteran.”

Nevertheless, whistleblowing is on the rise, according to Carolyn Lerner, chief attorney in the U.S. Office of Special Counsel. “The numbers are through the roof,” Lerner reported.

The outcomes aren’t necessarily good news for taxpayers or advocates of open government. Of 2,900 cases last year, 1,400 involved retaliation against whistleblowers, and whistleblowers prevailed less than a quarter of the time.

“There is a new trend,” said Tom Devine, legal director for the Government Accountability Project. “(Washington) is making it a crime to blow the whistle. You have the choice of resigning or facing charges. That’s chilling.”

Devine told the House subcommittee on the federal workforce that more agencies are exploiting and expanding a “sensitive jobs loophole” to keep government employees from speaking out about waste, fraud and abuse.

“Sensitive jobs,” he said, aren’t just held by the likes of NSA leaker Edward Snowden anymore. They can now include employees stocking sunglasses at military base exchanges. “We’re changing from the rule of law to a national security spoils system,” Devine charged.

The 1989 Whistleblower Protection Act has been “enhanced” twice, most recently in 2012. But contrary to President Obama’s promise of unprecedented openness in government, news reports have excoriated “Obama’s war on whistleblowers.

Associated Press President Gary Pruitt said last year that whistleblowers “may be reluctant to talk to the press because they don’t want records kept on them or their phone number associated with a news gathering organization.” Whistleblowers say they have less protection than ever.

“The law is frustratingly anemic,” said Van Boven. “If you blow the whistle, you want to be a masochist who will face financial ruin and a probable divorce.” Richard Kelsey, assistant dean of the George Mason University School of Law, blames what he calls “the administrative state.” “It’s become the fourth branch of government,” seizing power from Congress and the courts, Kelsey told Watchdog.org in an interview.

“These agencies are taking wide latitude to enforce laws in the ways they deem fit. In this world, rule-making authority equals lawmaking authority. That’s unconstitutional.”

Van Boven, coming from the epicenter of recent bureaucratic incompetence at the VA, said the system is incapable of policing and reforming itself. “There should be outside, independent investigations to avoid conflicts of interest,” he recommended.

Van Boven dismissed the offices of inspectors general, which are attached to each agency, as “a comedy of errors.”

*****

Kenric Ward is a national correspondent for Watchdog.org and chief of its Virginia Bureau. Contact him at (571) 319-9824. @Kenricward

Kenric Ward is a veteran journalist who has worked on three Pulitzer Prize-winning newspapers. A California native, he received a BA from UCLA (Political Science/Phi Beta Kappa) and holds an MBA. He reported and edited at the San Jose Mercury News and the Las Vegas Sun before joining Watchdog.org in 2012 as Virginia Bureau Chief.

kenric@watchdogvirginia.org

 

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Unity, Division, Glory, and Grace

United in TruthTravel Trend Myanmar Tourism

by Burk Parsons

 During the second half of the twentieth century, post-Christian societies throughout the world began to shout the mantra “unity is god!” In attempting to liberate themselves from the truths upon which they were established, they bound themselves to a law that requires perfect compliance. Consequently, it has become necessary for every post-Christian society to promulgate its cause in accordance with this one code: “In unity we trust, in tolerance we flourish, and in pluralism we are free. Unity is god, and there is no god but unity.” It is the destiny of human societies to self-destruct, and it is the manner of fallen men to make self-destruction seem worthwhile.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe perfect society, however, is united. It is established by truth. Truth, however, neither establishes itself nor validates itself. Rather, it is established by one whose word is truth, and it is validated by one whose word demands truth.10 commandments...

As Christians, we know the truth, and we understand that truth cannot be compromised for the sake of unity. Though the compromise of truth may seem to cultivate unity, such unity is imaginary and brings about even greater division in the end.

Throughout history, the church visible has experienced periods of unity and periods of division. The one, true Church of Christ, however, has never been divided. The unity of the Church invisible has not come as a result of compromise. Rather, our unity has been established by truth itself — truth that is unable to be compromised.

crossIn the prologue to the gospel according to John, it is written: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Moreover, in responding to His doubting disciple Thomas, Jesus declared, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). God has manifested His truth in Himself; in Jesus Christ, truth is proclaimed and established. On account of Christ, we know the truth and are thus set free by the truth (John 8:32). We do not have to attempt to liberate ourselves by establishing our own standards of truth. Rather, we are established by Christ Himself, for He is the truth (John 17:17).wine candles

We, the people of God, exist as the perfect society of God because we are united in God. We are His people and He is our God; we are united in Him because of His truth — because of Christ (John 17:23).

olivet discourseNevertheless, we are the people of God not for the mere reason that we are members of a local church; we are the people of God because we are in Christ. Moreover, we are in Christ not primarily because we believe that He died for sinners. Rather, we are in Him precisely because He died for us (Eph. 1:7). “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us … while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son” (Rom. 5:8 ff.).

pathway doorsIn Christ, we, the people of God, have been redeemed (Titus 2:14). As our High Priest (Heb. 8:1), Christ lives to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:25), and as our source of eternal salvation He has offered Himself as the once-for-all sacrifice for those who obey Him (Heb. 5:9). “Therefore,” Hebrews says, “he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance” (9:15).

picassos loverIn Christ, redemption has been accomplished on behalf of God’s people. As a man covenants with a woman in marriage, so Christ, the Groom, covenants with the church. He enters into covenant with His community of saints, and He demonstrates His love by sacrificing Himself for His people (Matt. 1:21). Indeed, we are His Bride for whom He has given His life, fulfilling the covenant of redemption (Eph. 5:25). As a result, redemption is particular to those for whom Christ has died (John 10:11;Acts 20:28Heb. 2:9). Our Savior “gave himself for us, to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14). We are Christ’s, and for this reason we cannot be divided (Luke 11:17), for Christ cannot be divided (1 Cor. 1:13).

Christ’s redemption did not make salvation merely possible; it made salvation actual. What is more, we are not potentially savedfirewater by Christ’s redemption; we are actually saved. His death secured us in Him and united us in Him forever, and in Him we live, move, and have our being (Acts 17:28). By His grace and for His glory, His redemption accomplished for us and applied to us all things pertaining to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3).

bread and wineConsequently, we do not shout the humanistic mantra: “Unity is god!” Rather, we proclaim the truth of God in Christ: “In God we trust, in truth we flourish, and in Christ we are free. Christ is truth, and in Christ we are one.” Although it is the destiny of human societies to self-destruct, it is our destiny to reign forever as one in Christ.

*****

Article from © Tabletalk magazine 

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