The Aim of Totalitarian Education

Making People Superfluous: Hannah Arendt on Ideology andU.N. Building the-big-appleTotalitarianism

By Patrick Keeney

The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any. —Hannah Arendt

The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the convinced Communist, but people for whom the distinction between true and false no longer exists. —Hannah Arendt

Hannah Arendt (1906–1975) was a thinker of the first order but one who defies easy categorization. She fits uneasily into a category such as liberal, conservative, libertarian, or radical. And while she humbly eschewed the title philosopher, few would doubt that her writings, in all their manifest variety, provide a continuous source of insight into the human condition and, in particular, further our understanding of the political realm.

Her greatest contribution to political thought is her analysis of the rise of the twentieth-century totalitarian state, a phenomenon that in her estimation lay outside the traditional categories of Western philosophy. Nazism and communism—the two most prominent forms of totalitarianism—were something new: “Totalitarianism differs essentially from other forms of political oppression. . . . Wherever it rose to power, it destroyed all social, legal, and political traditions of the country.”

leninArendt’s analysis of totalitarianism is developed in her first book, The Origins of Totalitarianism.1 As the word suggests, totalitarian systems claim to have uncovered absolute and universal laws that provide a “total” explanation of all history. Totalitarian rule, far from being lawless or arbitrary, appeals to suprahuman laws. Nazism declared that the laws of nature had decreed the Aryan race to be superior to all others: “Underlying the Nazis’ belief in race laws… is Darwin’s idea of man as the product of natural development.” The unequivocal laws of nature determined that those of Aryan blood were the rightful rulers of the world. Similarly, Marxism appeals to the invariable law of historical progress. Hence, “totalitarian rule is quite prepared to sacrifice everybody’s vital immediate interests in the execution of what it assumes to be the law of History or the law of Nature.”anti liberty

Such “laws” occupy the sacred status of first principles. They make claims about the world that are immune from falsification by either experience or logic. For example,

The word “race” in racism does not signify any genuine curiosity about the human races as a field for scientific exploration, but is the “idea” by which the movement of history is explained as one consistent process.

In short, ideological thinking is contemptuous of the empirical realm. It establishes a “functioning world of no-sense.” Facts are seen only through the lens of an a priori, ideological explanatory theory. Ideologies start from “an axiomatically accepted premise, deducing everything else from it… Ideological argumentation [is] always a kind of logical deduction.”

And herein resides the steely logic of totalitarian thought. Like the closed, axiomatic systems of logic or mathematics, they are exempt from reality, from the world in which human life takes place. Arendt sums it up this way: “Ideological thinking… proceeds with a consistency that exists nowhere in the realm of reality.”

Totalitarian movements are different from mere revolutionary movements, in that what they aim at is “not the . . . transmutation of society, but the transformation of human nature itself.” As Arendt puts it, “There is only one thing that seems discernible: we may say that radical evil has emerged in connection with a system in which all men have become equally superfluous.” Here, then, is the ultimate nightmarish aim of totalitarian thought: to render men superfluous.

The bland assumption that totalitarianism can be safely confined to history is belied by zealots of various stripes, all of whom are convinced that their manifesto or holy book or prophet has revealed, at last, “the mysteries of the universe.” Such true believers are a danger to us all, in that they are willing to sacrifice their fellow man on the altar of one or another of the inexorable laws of history, nature, or God.

Our schools are the first line of defense against what Susan Sontag once referred to as “Fascinating Fascism.”2 Educators need to affirm their commitment to rationality, to the power of reasoning unhampered by ideological blinders. Students need to be equipped with the requisite cognitive tools to challenge the plausibility and coherence of the central tenets of totalitarian thought. For example, to confront the assertion that there is a single, all-encompassing explanation for historical movement, students must learn how to weigh and assess historical claims, and how to grapple with contested interpretations of evidence. They also need to be taught the differing modes of inquiry appropriate to various disciplines. As Arendt demonstrated, a closed system of deductive logic proceeding from axiomatic first principles is a disastrous method for understanding the political realm.

Perhaps most important, students must be taught to tolerate and respect ideas that differ from their own or that they find offensive. The explosion of campus censorship in recent years, along with the demand for “safe spaces,” “trigger warnings,” and an overall general intolerance for any ideas deemed offensive, constitutes a betrayal of the Western academic tradition. For central to the mission of the university is the idea that a community of scholars, joined by a commitment to reason and the pursuit of truth, must be free to consider, confront, and critique all ideas. Open-mindedness is the sine qua non of the academic life. To insist that some ideas are so beyond the pale that they cannot be discussed in a university setting is to adopt a one-dimensional and parochial view. Bad ideas need to be refuted with better ideas and better evidence, not by shutting down speech. Any attempt at regulating campus speech constitutes a crucial first step toward creating a totalitarian campus, one that, like its political counterpart, has already decided the answer to certain questions. In such an institution (just as in the totalitarian state), restrictions are placed on what can and cannot be said, and those who engage in discourse that strays from the accepted orthodoxies are disciplined or banished from the realm.

To combat such a dystopian scenario, students need to enjoy toleration, and tolerance begins with humility. Like Socrates, we need to acknowledge that wisdom begins by admitting our ignorance. There is probably no better means of combating fanaticism and extremism than instilling in students a healthy dose of Socratic humility and skepticism.

Arendt’s analysis of totalitarianism continues to provide guidance for our own age. Many of those same social and intellectual pathologies that caused such devastation in the twentieth century are never far from the surface in democratic politics. Arendt thought that the best inoculation against totalitarian thinking is a citizenry capable of seeing through the false promises, deceits, and illusions of ideologies ready to foist upon us unassailable “truths” about the world. Which is only to say that Arendt believed in the power, and indeed the political necessity, of liberal education.


Patrick Keeney is the author of Liberalism, Communitarianism and Education: Reclaiming Liberal Education. He has written for both the academic and the popular press, and has contributed articles and reviews to journals and newspapers in Canada, the U.S., Ireland, and the U.K. He is co-editor of Prospero: A Journal of New Thinking in Philosophy for Education. He is currently an adjunct professor in the faculty of education at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. He can be reached at

  1. All Arendt quotations are taken from The Origins of Totalitarianism (New York: Harcourt, 1968).
  2. See “Fascinating Fascism,” New York Review of Books, February 6, 1975.

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Imposing Pornography on The National Parks?

a-pictureA New Version of Making America Great (Again)

By Bill Potter

In November of 2015, a National Park policeman approached the tour group I was leading on the grassy knoll of Bunker Hill in Boston. He demanded I stop teaching about the battle that had been fought there in 1775, and drew his ticket book (not his revolver) and threatened to write me up for “illegal guiding,” a crime unknown in statutory law and a term new to Landmark Events, our ‘history tour company.’Alaska

We had been there a number of times in previous years and until now had always received a warm welcome and at least indifference over my lecturing about the battle on the grounds around the monument. I lecture using a headset transmitter while our guests have unobtrusive receivers and ear buds so we don’t disturb non-group members who may also be visiting the site. Unlike our groups, most people just visit the history center, climb the steps of the massive obelisk that commemorates the battle, and then move on. The National Park Service (NPS) personnel help people inside the monument and museum and run the gift store.

Mummified ForestThe president of our company, Kevin Turley, gently informed the irate guard that the NPS police and interpreters, indeed, work for us, the American people. In response, the guard threatened to ticket Kevin and all our guests. In the end, the park rangers could neither provide a guide for us nor allow us to continue.

Tip of a Growing Iceberg

If this were a one-off incident, we could just chalk it up to a bored and over-zealous security guard. Alas, it is another conflict in a growing list of examples of the National Park Service (an arm of the Department of the Interior) attempting to prohibit teaching that they do not control, and which, perhaps, does not fit the new narrative of American history that they desire to convey.trees

Most history tour businesses depend on the NPS to tell them everything and provide the guides and instructors on battlefields, in homes and museums, and other historic sites. We too, in fact, sometimes lean on their expertise, especially inside museums. But we are careful to instruct all our families how to evaluate what they see at historic sites: from a Biblical presuppositional worldview, advising them not to absorb uncritically what they see and hear.

picassos loverA couple years ago we led a tour to Charleston, South Carolina. The NPS interpreter told us that they would separate all the children from the families once we arrived at Fort Sumter. When Mr. Turley remonstrated that we do not separate our families and that we have our own historians, she wagged her finger in his face and said “we know what your children need to know.” The implication, of course, was that only the instructors anointed by the federal government possessed the expertise to properly instruct the children about the whys and wherefores of the Civil War, and the sooner we understood that, the better. Could it be that the central government, in all its humanistic egalitarianism, has developed another revision of American history?1 Such revisionism did not happen overnight.leap of faith

Surveying the history of American public education and the ways that the past has been recruited to support the current political agendas is fodder for another article. Faith shapes the interpretation of the real world, including all the sites that have been set aside to remember the past. When you enter the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, you are greeted by cute little Iggy the Iguana who will lead you “through the evolution trail” in the museum. You will meet your one-celled protozoan ancestor and see how he evolved through natural selection all the way till you were born. Not all museums are that in your face about the evolutionary presuppositions of the historians who tell the story. Be assured, however, that the vast majority of historians believe that man is a product of chance/evolution, and without a soul, without hope, and without meaning. This, they say, is simple fact derived from the truth of natural selection.

The War of the Worldviews

All education is inherently religious. The conviction that facts are neutral and that they are merely reported by objective historians’ flies in the face of reality. As Dr. Rushdoony stated in The Biblical Philosophy of History: “To avoid myth, a historian must disavow the cult of ‘objective, impartial scholarship’ … The historian’s report represents a perspective on history, and it is a limited perspective of necessity.”2 A historian’s message is derived from his beliefs concerning God, creation, man, sin, redemption, revelation, accountability, epistemology, culture, and other central convictions.

Every June, we lead a tour to New Orleans over the annual D-Day commemoration. Besides visiting the World War II Museum, we take the opportunity to study another great battle of American history at the Chalmette Plantation just outside the city. It was there that General Andrew Jackson defended the Queen City from the attacks by General Pakenham and the veteran army of Great Britain, fresh from the defeat of Napoleon.

The results could not have been more spectacular nor more important in the course of United States history. I lead the group over the battlefield explaining the context, the main actors, the weapons, the strategies, the tactics, and the providential implications for American history. We often hold our own little reenactment with the children, flags flying, in a corner of the field, using wooden guns.

In June of 2016 we arrived for our annual tour as usual. The preserved battlefield is quite large, with few visitors present. In the midst of our regular tour across the battlefield, a NPS ranger approached our group, listening for a few moments before Kevin Turley asked him if we could be of service. The ranger said there was some question as to whether we had a right to teach there and inquired if we were a commercial company or a non-profit. After replying that we were a non-profit, the ranger said he would check to see if we were allowed to be there and left with our contact information. We ended the tour a few minutes later and moved on to our next destination.

Two months later we received a packet in the mail from the Department of the Interior with a large red WARNING angled across the envelope. They ordered us to pay a fine for illegal guiding at Chalmette Battlefield. Further, they prohibited me from guiding any more history tours on National Park Service property.

They had apparently visited our website where our Christian philosophy of history is on bold display, as are pictures of teaching and guiding without their authorization. We have refused to pay the fine and will meet them in federal district court in New Orleans on December 6, 2016. In preparation for the trial, we have discovered a number of interesting facts of relevance to readers of Faith for All of Life.

Imposing a Worldview Using State Force

The National Park Service celebrated their one hundredth anniversary in 2016. The NPS is led by a director who exercises full authority over the operations and interpretations of American history. He oversees more than 21,000 employees at more than four hundred sites, fifty-nine of them national parks, and manages an annual budget of three billion dollars.

On June 24, 2016, President Obama recognized the Stonewall National Monument as the country’s first monument to honor the LBGTQ “community” in America. It commemorates the “uprising” in Greenwich Village in 1969 by homosexuals that is typically considered the most important event in the history of “gay liberation” in America. In October of 2016, Jonathan Jarvis, the director of the NPS appointed by President Obama in 2009, in a conference call with Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewel, discussed the release of LGBTQ America: A Theme Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer History. Jarvis mentioned that they have identified 1,300 potential LGBTQ sites to consider for historic designation. “For far too long the struggles and contributions of the LBGTQ community have been ignored in the traditional narratives of our nation’s history,” said Director Jarvis.

Tim Gill of the Gill Foundation (which financially supported the LGBTQ America study) happily stated that “equality has now become the way the federal government does business. It’s that commitment that led the National Park Service to produce this landmark study. It’s not enough to change laws and policies. We have to change hearts and minds.”

Moral relativism has long been a central tenet of the “court historians,” and with the widespread acceptance of homosexuality and the agenda that has permeated everything from the armed forces to the public-school classroom, we should not be surprised that the new historical sites will reflect those values. Dr. Rushdoony characterized such interpretative frameworks as seeking liberation, specifically,

… the liberation from history, Christianity, civilization and law. A radical moral relativism goes hand in hand with every form of statism and is its instrument and concomitant. This liberation is called a battle for liberty, but this new definition of “liberty” is not liberty under law, but liberty from law, and it is anti-law. Every instance in history of the rise of statism has gone hand in hand with the rise of pornography. The two are closely related. To encourage the one is to further the other.

In its simpler form, this faith is expressed as “the will of the people.” Democracy is vox populi, vox dei. There is no standard other than ‘the will of the people,’ which can include all things.3

We do not have to accept the new history or the elites who articulate it in popular culture, including those imposing it at the historical sites where God in His great providence brought about events that have moved His agenda forward (and His is the only agenda that will move forward). From a Constitutional viewpoint, we still possess freedom of speech and assembly, though those precious freedoms are also being redefined and eroded.

Our stand against the National Park Service is a small engagement in a much larger historical and cultural war. We don’t know if it will be easily resolved. What we do know is this: if we don’t fight the small encroachments on our liberty under law, we may soon find ourselves liberated from the truths of the past and our right to teach them.


See the following four articles for important insights into how we arrived at the current situation:

Dr. Roger Schultz, “Historical Revisionism: Why All The Fuss?” Faith for All of Life, Mar-Apr 2007, pp. 7–11. Also available online at

Mark R. Rushdoony, “Historical Perspective,” Faith for All of Life, May-June 2015, pp. 2–3. Also available online at

Martin G. Selbrede, “The World in God’s Fist: The Meaning of History,” Faith for All of Life, Jul-Aug 2008, pp. 23–27. Also online at

Martin G. Selbrede, “The Emperor’s Continued Nudity: Jeff Sharlet’s Critique of Christian Historiography Examined,” Faith for All of Life, Mar-Apr 2007, pp. 16–21. Also online at

  1. Rousas J. Rushdoony, The Biblical Philosophy of History (Vallecito, CA: Ross House Books, [1969, 1997] 2000), p. 111.
  2. Rousas J. Rushdoony, This Independent Republic (Vallecito, CA: Ross House Books, [1965] 2001), pp. 111–112. Other valuable works by Rushdoony on this issue include The Biblical Philosophy of History and his lecture series on American History and World History, available at


Mr. Potter is an independent scholar and historian who teaches, writes, and lectures from a Biblical/Providential perspective. He is a popular conference and university speaker and the leading historian for Landmark Events, a company specializing in teaching on the ground where great history-changing events occurred. Landmark emphasizes teaching the new generations to recognize the hand of God in our nation’s past and in all of history and to interpret it based on the truths of God’s Word.

Bill has been married to his wife Leslie for 40 years during which time they have home-educated their eight children.

[Editor’s note: Readers interested in supporting Landmark Events in its court battle with the National Park Service can send donations online at or by mail to Landmark Events, P.O. Box 1762, Columbia, TN 38402.]

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Freedom of God vs Freedom of the State

washington dcFreedom and the Statelight and darkness

By Rev. R.J. Rushdoony

Not only is morality transferred from God and His law to the state and its fiat law, but freedom also. Whether it be a Marxist state or a democratic one, freedom is today usually spoken of as an attribute of the state rather than of the people as individuals. Such freedom as is permitted to men is freedom under the state, not under God.

Turning again to Gumplowicz, we find a frank statement of the fact that man, as a creature of the state, cannot be free:

That man is a free being is pure imagination … The premise of “inalienable human rights” rests upon the most unreasonable self-deification of man and overestimation of the value of human life, and upon a complete misconception of the only possible basis of the existence of the state. This fancied freedom and equality is incompatible with the state and is a complete negation of it.1

In Biblical theology, the absolute freedom of God is a basic premise: God cannot be controlled or governed by anything outside of Himself. This is the premise of humanistic doctrines of the state: the absolute freedom of the state.U.N. Building

At the same time, radical and final coercive powers are claimed by the state. It can be noted indeed that there are limits, in the United States and other countries, to these coercive powers, but these are self-limitations. Acts of Congress or of Parliament can at any time alter or remove those limits. Without the limitation of faith in and a covenant with and under God, the state is the absolute determiner of its own powers. With each passing year, we have seen an extension of those powers. In the United States, whatever the platform of moderation, reform, or the limitations of powers whereby presidents and members of Congress have been elected, there has been a steady increase of coercion and a decrease in freedom.

In Mexico, there has been a clearer development of the theology of the state, because Mexican intellectuals have been more successful in implementing their philosophies. The Mexican economy has been more backward by far than anything else in North America, but its politics has been more dominated by intellectuals and theoreticians and hence in advance of the United States and Canada in developing the implications of humanism.

No less than do Christians believe in a final order, the full and perfect community created by God, do humanists also believe in their own final order, the “Great Community” of man. Thus, in Mexico, leading thinkers have been ready to allow a semblance of religious liberty provided that the churches do nothing to influence or alter the social order. Thus, for Gabino Barreda,

An individual should think and believe as he pleases, provided that his thoughts and beliefs do not alter the social order. The mission of public education was not merely to teach; it was to make public order possible.2

Less honestly stated, this is the position of many state and federal agencies in the United States during the 1970s and 1980s in particular. Religious freedom was tenable only when and where Christianity was having no influence on the social order. When the Christian school movement began to move the faith from irrelevance to relevance, persecution began. It became obvious that the much vaunted religious liberty meant for many officers of state the freedom to practice religion only between the limits of a man’s two ears.

The Marxists have seen liberty as a concept used by a social class to their advantage. The Mexican positivists hold that a thing is free when it follows its natural course and encounters no obstacles. It then follows the law of its being. A stream coming down a mountainside is in terms of this definition free. However, where applied to man, this doctrine has some interesting consequences, because freedom is then clearly related to the doctrine of man. If man is God’s creature, then freedom is only under God. If, however, man is an evolving animal whose being is determined by naturalistic drives and forces, then religion is a dramatic restraint on his freedom.

Thus, for Gabino Barreda, the individual was not free to do as he wished. Rather, “Freedom ought to be subordinate to the interests of society, namely, to the interests of the Mexican nation.” A laissez-faire freedom is to be seen instead as disorder, not liberty. “The freedom of the individual must subordinate itself to the social order.” Freedom is not under God, but under the state. “Thus, the state should intervene, as an instrument of society, in the moral education of Mexicans. It must prepare Mexicans to be good civil servants by stimulating their altruistic sentiments.”3 For this reason, Barreda could say, “the rights of society are more important than the rights of man.”4 It followed also that Barreda could propose a civil dictatorship to promote freedom.5

The equation of reason and morality with the state is commonplace to humanistic thought. (A variation is its equation with autonomous man.) Such a view is productive of a new pharisaism. In this self-righteous faith, the state as the great good passes judgment on all other segments of society. It holds that the state and its sovereignty constitute the necessary order for life, indeed, the saving order. Dissent from the state then becomes true evil. Not crime but nonconformity is then seen as the great problem.

As a consequence in the [former] Soviet Union, criminals are not seen as the great offenders. Rather, it is the (political) dissenter of any kind, especially the Christian or the libertarian dissenter. The uniform testimony of former slave labor camp prisoners is that criminals have a privileged status and are commonly used to terrorize political prisoners. The only offense of these political prisoners, when there is any offense, is their real or fancied dissent. Vicious hoodlums do not threaten the political philosophy of the state, but dissenters do, and they are accordingly treated more severely.

We see steps in the same direction in the United States. As the state’s ability to cope with crime, and its concern to do so, diminishes, its zeal to penalize dissent increases. The persecutions of churches and of independent Christian schools points clearly to this zeal to limit liberty. Thus, many people find a dual limitation on their freedom. In major cities, freedom of movement, especially after dark, is limited because of the freedom of the criminal element. At the same time, their personal and religious liberties are increasingly restricted by statist claims and the growth of statist power.

Bussell pointed out how, in medieval Europe, the empire revived Roman law (in the twelfth century) to destroy the freedom of the church. Roman law “could not conceive of a genuine dyarchy in which both parties respect the limits of the sacred and profane departments.”6 By 1453, Bussell held, the ideals of the medieval world were dead, and statism in the saddle.7 The savagery of the modern age was under way, and the Renaissance of paganism was also the renewal of tyranny and barbarism.

Despite the rise of the national states, the Holy Roman Empire and its dream persisted. Maximilian I (1459–1519), called “the foremost knight of the age,” is, like Sigismund, well regarded by many historians. However, as we know from a letter to his daughter Margaret, Maximilian hoped to gain the papal throne on the death of the pope, and at times thought of deposing Pope Julius II. Moreover, Maximilian dreamed of the “good” he could accomplish by using the church’s wealth for the empire.8

There were and are no restraints on the dream of the modern state. What Maximilian dreamed about, Henry VIII in effect did, and also Louis XIV and other monarchs with their state churches. With the French and Russian Revolutions, the state made itself man’s church and savior. As man’s true savior and church, the modern state began an open or a covert war against the church, and also against man’s freedom. The only freedom desired by the modern state is its own.

As we have noted, man’s freedom was separated from God and creation in His image and made a natural fact, freedom to follow our natural course. One religious consequence of this has been the sexual revolution. Another and an earlier one, is aptly summarized by Hallowell: “Communion with nature replaces communion with God as the source of inspiration and true enlightenment.”9 An early example of this was William Wordsworth. The environmental movement has deep religious roots.

This “natural freedom,” however, does not make possible any freedom for man other than an esthetic and sexual venting of his impulses. To “do your own thing” is a logical consequence of Wordsworth’s religion. It means submission to, not resistance against, the forces of history, and it is the death of freedom, which is an anti-naturalistic motive. Because the Biblical doctrine of freedom is anti-naturalistic and supernatural, only Christ can make us free (John 8:36). We are made free by the supernatural act of regeneration. Since our natural course is a fallen one, natural freedom is to sin and die. The history of true freedom cannot be known or written apart from Jesus Christ. Inevitably, the modern humanistic state is anti-Christian and anti-freedom.


(Taken from Christianity and the State)

  1. Cited by Hallowell, Main Currents, p. 318, from Gumplowicz, The Outlines of Sociology, p. 180.
  2. Zea, Positivism in Mexico, p. 126.
  3. ibid., pp. 98–99.
  4. ibid., p. 115.
  5. ibid., p. 95.
  6. Bussell, Religious Thought and Heresy in the Middle Ages, p. 848.
  7. ibid., pp. 646–647.
  8. Friedrich Heer, The Holy Roman Empire (New York, NY: Frederick A. Praeger, 1967), p. 139.
  9. Hallowell, Main Currents, p. 167.


Rev. R.J. Rushdoony (1916-2001) was the founder of Chalcedon and a leading theologian, church/state expert, and author of numerous works on the application of Biblical Law to society.

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The Assassination Attempts on a Pope and a President

light and darkness“There Is a Purpose to This”

By Paul Kengor

February 2017

A Book Review

On May 13, 1981, just six weeks after the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, Pope John Paul II was shot in Saint Peter’s Square. Here, in this exclusive excerpt from the forthcoming book A Pope and a President: John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, and the Extraordinary Untold Story of the 20th Century, Dr. Paul Kengor looks at reactions to the Pope’s shooting from Washington to Moscow.

***space shadows

President Ronald Reagan’s diary entry for Wednesday, May 13, needed little elaboration: “Word brought to us of the shooting of the Pope. Called Cardinal Cooke & Cardinal [Krol]—sent message to Vatican & prayed.”[1]

There was not much more to do. In moments like this, he had learned well from his mother, you pray.

How sad the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II was. What a potential setback it was. Ronald Reagan had great ambitions to turn back the march of atheistic communism. And the pope was a big part of that plan. Would the Holy Father survive? Would good prevail?

Going to Notre Dame

balloon-ridesRonald Reagan’s first major public appearance after the shooting of Pope John Paul II just happened to be an address at Notre Dame, a Catholic university named after its patroness, the Virgin Mary—the same Virgin Mary who was the patroness of John Paul II, and whom the Holy Father believed had spared his life the day of his shooting in Saint Peter’s Square. A Catholic screenwriter could not have written a better script for the actor-turned-president.

On May 17, President Reagan traveled to Notre Dame to give the commencement address. Fittingly, a commencement is not an end but a beginning, for in this speech Reagan publicly commenced his presidential crusade against atheistic

Reagan laid out America’s Cold War challenge: “The years ahead are great ones for this country, for the cause of freedom and the spread of civilization. The West won’t contain communism, it will transcend communism. . . . It will dismiss it as some bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages are even now being written.”

No else was making such audacious predictions at the time. Critics would scoff at the president’s claim.

The Notre Dame speech was distinctively Ronald Reagan, bearing his personal imprint throughout. Although speechwriter Tony Dolan wrote the original draft, Reagan rewrote the entire address. “Though the archives don’t show it,” Dolan told me, “the Gipper did a complete rewrite of my draft on this one. And then called me to apologize. Geez.”[2]

cloudThis highly personal speech drove home Reagan’s notion that Americans were part of a larger cause set forth by a higher authority. He drew on remarks Winston Churchill had made during the most ominous days of the Battle of Britain: “When great causes are on the move in the world, we learn we are spirits, not animals, and that something is going on in space and time, and beyond space and time, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty.” Reagan had used this quotation way back in October 1964, in his historic “Time for Choosing” speech. He cited it again at Notre Dame to suggest that Americans had a duty to fight expansionist Soviet communism.tulips

Reagan followed the Churchill passage with a story from his experience filming the movie Knute Rockne, All American, about the legendary Notre Dame football coach. As a young actor in Hollywood, Reagan played one of Rockne’s top players, George Gipp, who on his deathbed told the coach, “Sometime when the team is up against it and the breaks are beating the boys, ask ’em to go in there with all they’ve got and win just one for the Gipper.” At the movie’s climax, Rockne tells his team the story to rally them for a dramatic come-from-behind victory.

Speaking at Notre Dame in 1981, Reagan asked his audience to “look at the significance of that story”:

Rockne could have used Gipp’s dying words to win a game any time. But eight years went by following the death of George Gipp before Rock revealed those dying words, his deathbed wish.

And then he told the story at halftime to a team that was losing, and one of the only teams he had ever coached that was torn by dissension and jealousy and factionalism. [None of] the seniors on that team . . . had known George Gipp. They were children when he played for Notre Dame. It was to this team that Rockne told the story and so inspired them that they rose above their personal animosities. For someone they had never known, they joined together in a common cause and attained the unattainable.

Reagan told the audience: “Now, it’s only a game. . . . But is there anything wrong with young people having an experience, feeling something so deeply, thinking of someone else to the point that they can give so completely of themselves? There will come times in the lives of all of us when we’ll be faced with causes bigger than ourselves, and they won’t be on a playing field.”

Just as Coach Rockne rallied a team torn by “dissension and jealousy and factionalism,” Coach Reagan seemed to be rallying his audience—and the broader American public—to “attain the unattainable.”

Later in the speech, Reagan made clear the stakes:

When it’s written, the history of our time won’t dwell long on the hardships of the recent past. But history will ask—and our answer [will] determine the fate of freedom for a thousand years—Did a nation born of hope lose hope? Did a people forged by courage find courage wanting? Did a generation steeled by hard war and a harsh peace forsake honor at the moment of great climactic struggle for the human spirit? . . . The answers are to be found in the heritage left by generations of Americans before us. They stand in silent witness to what the world will soon know and history someday record: that in its third century, the American Nation came of age, affirmed its leadership of free men and women serving selflessly a vision of man with God, government for people, and humanity at peace.

It is important to place these remarks in context: Just weeks had passed since Reagan’s brush with death. On Good Friday, April 17, Cardinal Terence Cooke had visited Reagan in the White House. “The hand of God was upon you,” Cooke told Reagan. Reagan agreed: “I know.” He then told Cooke, “I have decided that whatever time I have left is for Him.”

And, of course, John Paul II had nearly been killed only four days earlier. Reagan did not neglect that fact. Speaking of compassion, sacrifice, and endurance, the president noted the irony that “one who exemplifies [those traits] so well, Pope John Paul II, a man of peace and goodness, an inspiration to the world, would be struck by a bullet from a man towards whom he could only feel compassion and love.” Reagan went on: “It was John Paul II who warned in last year’s encyclical on mercy and justice [Dives in Misericordia] against certain economic theories that use the rhetoric of class struggle to justify injustice.” He quoted the Holy Father: “In the name of an alleged justice . . . the neighbor is sometimes destroyed, killed, deprived of liberty, or stripped of fundamental human rights.”

Here, Reagan (like the pope in his encyclical) did not use the word communism or socialism or Marxism. But there was no doubt about what he meant by “certain economic theories” that deprive people of basic rights and even kill to achieve their ends.

In retrospect, this was a telling insight into Ronald Reagan’s thinking on the assassination attempt. He seems to have linked John Paul II’s shooter to international communism. This oblique but potentially explosive suggestion somehow escaped notice at the time.

Interestingly, the passage on John Paul II does not appear in any of the multiple drafts of the Notre Dame speech on file at the Reagan Library today.[3] None of Tony Dolan’s drafts at the library include this paragraph. Thus it is possible, even likely, that Reagan wrote the passage into his text shortly before delivering the speech, which would not have been unusual for him. Given the subject matter and the fact that, as Dolan attested, Reagan did “a complete rewrite,” the speech clearly had significant meaning to the president.[4]

Ronald Reagan’s attention was fixed on Moscow. At a press conference, just a couple of weeks after the Notre Dame address, he doubled down on his prediction that the West would transcend communism. When a reporter asked, “Do the events of the last ten months in Poland constitute the beginning of the end of Soviet domination of Eastern Europe?” Reagan answered:

Well, what I meant then in my remarks at Notre Dame and what I believe now about what we’re seeing tie together. I just think it is impossible—and history reveals this—for any form of government to completely deny freedom to people and have that go on interminably. There eventually comes an end to it. And I think the things we’re seeing, not only in Poland but the reports that are coming out of Russia itself about the younger generation and its resistance to long-time government controls, is an indication that communism is an aberration. It’s not a normal way of living for human beings, and I think we are seeing the first, beginning cracks, the beginning of the end.[5]

The Lady from Calcutta

A small but formidable woman from Calcutta had watched the shootings of Reagan and John Paul II with intense concern. Three weeks after the attempt on the pope’s life, Mother Teresa visited the White House, where she jolted President Reagan by affirming the sense of divine calling he had felt after the shooting.

On June 4, 1981, the president and first lady sat down for a private meal with the nun and a few selected guests. No cameras, no media. The servant to Calcutta’s destitute made an immediate impact on the host. Mother Teresa said: “Mr. President Reagan, do you know that we stayed up for two straight nights praying for you after you were shot? We prayed very hard for you to live.”[6]

Humbled, Reagan thanked her, but she wasn’t finished. She looked at the president pointedly and said: “You have suffered the passion of the cross and have received grace. There is a purpose to this. Because of your suffering and pain you will now understand the suffering and pain of the world.” She added, “This has happened to you at this time because your country and the world need you.”

Nancy Reagan dissolved into tears. Her husband, the great communicator, was at a loss for words.

The White House did not hold a press conference or photo op with Mother Teresa. The administration did not do much to document the encounter either.[7] Mother Teresa departed that afternoon as quietly as she came. But the sparse record we have suggests that the lady from Calcutta had made a profound impression on the president.

The official Public Papers of the President of the United States, which are silent on the lunch itself, register a short press exchange with the president just as the nun left:

Journalist (unidentified): How was your visit, Mr. President?

Reagan: Just wonderful. You can’t be in the presence of someone like that without feeling better about the world.

Journalist: What do you think about the tax plan?

Reagan: Well, I can’t talk about that now.

Journalist: What did you talk about with Mother Teresa?

Reagan: Her work, what she’s doing. And just as I said, really, here is someone who’s so optimistic about all of us, mankind, and what she’s trying to do is very inspiring.

Journalist: What impressed you most about her, sir?

Reagan: I guess she’s just the soul of kindness and great humility, because in all of her work and all that she’s done, she expresses thanks for having had the opportunity to do it.

Journalist: Thank you, sir.[8]

It was a brief exchange, not even 150 words. Reagan was in no frame of mind to talk tax cuts. He had been touched in an altogether different way. Reagan might have had in mind his words from the Notre Dame speech two and a half weeks earlier: at moments like this, we learn we are spirits, not animals, and that something is happening in space and time and beyond space and time that spells duty.[9]

A “Vile Concoction”

Meanwhile, the communists were going to great lengths to deny any role in the shooting of the head of the Roman Catholic Church. On May 14, the day after the shooting, TASS, the Soviet news agency, released a terse statement: “According to a statement by a Vatican spokesman, Pope John Paul II remains in stable condition after undergoing five hours of surgery. The Pope was hit by three of the four bullets that the terrorist fired.”[10]

This was not accurate. Of course, Soviet press statements rarely were. The pope had been hit twice. Moscow was overly hopeful.

On May 15 came Pravda’s first published response to the shooting, the tone of which ought to have raised red flags to anyone familiar with Soviet propaganda. “The terrorist who yesterday tried to kill Pope John Paul II is a Turkish citizen,” the article started. “He is Mehmet Ali Agca, who in the past has had close ties with Turkey’s neo-fascist National Movement Party, whose leadership is currently on trial before a military tribunal for subversive activities in the country.” The brief article (213 words in English) made no mention of Agca’s connections to Moscow’s puppet regime in Bulgaria. It referred to Agca as a “neo-fascist” twice, a “terrorist” three times, a “murderer” and “criminal” and “killer” once each. Trying to cast Agca as a right-wing extremist, Pravda added that the perpetrator had killed a “liberal” Turkish newspaper editor. The terms Turkey, Turkish, and Turkish citizen appeared no less than seven times in the short article.[11]

The Kremlin then went quiet until September, when a piece in the respected leftist British publication The Guardian, quoting unnamed Western sources, speculated on whether Moscow might have been involved in the shooting. A September 8 response in Izvestia, titled “Red Herring,” blasted The Guardian’s “ravings,” “nonsense,” and “vile concoction”—typical Soviet language. Izvestia tried to put the focus back on Agca:

On May 13, it will be recalled, there was an assassination attempt against the Pope in St. Peter’s Square. The Turk Mehmet Ali Agca who shot the Pope was arrested and put on trial. A great deal was written about this criminal action, and the would-be assassin was shown on television. It was established that he is a fascist and the murderer of a liberal Turkish journalist. He had been sentenced to death but escaped from jail under mysterious circumstances. Ali Agca had found powerful benefactors who had provided him with virtually unlimited funds, making it possible for him to travel freely in many countries. Naturally, it never occurred to anyone to portray this piece of scum as a “communist agent.”

But now The Guardian (or whoever gives the orders as to what is to be printed) has decided that this must be rectified without delay, and “rectified,” moreover, in such a way as to make people ashamed of the British paper’s ravings. “Whoever gives the orders”? The Guardian most assuredly did not take orders from its government. No, that was the mode of operations in Moscow.

“It’s not hard to guess what these ravings are, or what their purpose is,” Izvestia continued. “Ali Agca’s shot was said to be the result of a plot—not a simple plot but an international one, organized by ‘countries of the Eastern bloc’!” The exclamation point conveyed just how preposterous such an allegation was. Izvestia said The Guardian ran this “nonsense,” based on unnamed sources, simply “to sow the seeds of doubt, mislead the public and serve the imperialist forces that are continuing to step up the anti-Soviet campaign, using it as a cover for their adventurist policies, giving further impetus to the arms race and aggravating the international situation.”

The committed leftists at The Guardian would have had a good chuckle seeing themselves accused of being imperialists and adventurists stoking the arms race for Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. “The conclusion is obvious,” Izvestia wrote. “This new anti-Soviet concoction is as groundless as all the others. It’s being spread solely as a ‘red herring.’ ”[12]

From what my research reveals, this was the longest piece on the shooting of John Paul II to appear in the Soviet press up until that point. And it came in response to charges of Moscow complicity. That was probably not a coincidence.

The Kremlin propaganda machine attacked anyone who dared to accuse the communists of malfeasance, including Claire Sterling, the leading journalist investigating the Bulgarian connection. In September 1982, Bulgaria’s communist regime would release a 178-page “report” taking aim at Sterling. This communist diatribe was titled Dossier on the Anatomy of a Calumny.[13]

It did not take long before both the Bulgarians and Soviets were contending that the CIA had tried to kill the pope. Yes, the CIA. Truly, nothing was beyond the communist propagandists.


Paul Kengor, PhD, is the New York Times bestselling author of God and Ronald Reagan, The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism, and Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century, among other books. He is a professor of political science at Grove City College, where he serves as executive director of the Center for Vision and Values. 

This essay is an advance excerpt of his forthcoming book A Pope and a President: John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, and the Extraordinary Untold Story of the 20th Century, which will be published in late April 2017 and can be preordered now from Amazon.


[1] Though Reagan otherwise did not seem to suffer from a significant spelling disability, he wrote “Cardinal Crowell” here, which appears to be his spur-of-the-moment (pre-Google) phonetic spelling of Cardinal John Krol, the Philadelphia prelate with whom Reagan had a good relationship. Douglas Brinkley, ed., The Reagan Diaries (New York: HarperCollins, 2007), 18.

[2] See my discussion of this in two pieces: Paul Kengor, “Reagan at Notre Dame,” National Review Online, May 16, 2011; Paul Kengor, “A Welcome Correction,” National Review Online, May 18, 2011.

[3] I reviewed these drafts personally at the Reagan Library in August 2015. My assistant David Kirk reviewed them in January 2015.

[4] Another possible explanation is, in my view, less likely: that the archives are missing a final draft of the speech that included such a passage.

[5] Reagan, “The President’s News Conference,” June 16, 1981.

[6] See: Laurence I. Barrett, Gambling with History: Reagan in the White House (New York: Doubleday, 1983), 124; Michael K. Deaver, A Different Drummer: My Thirty Years with Ronald Reagan (New York: Harper, 2001), 114.

[7] The records at the Reagan Library tell us only of a White House luncheon in the Family Dining Room that included twelve people: President Reagan, Nancy Reagan, Mother Teresa, a Sister Priscilla (described as a “traveling aide to Mother Teresa”), a Mrs. Vi Collins (the U.S. sponsor to Mother Teresa), Michael Deaver, Senator Mark Hatfield and his wife, Thomas Getman (chief legislative aide to Hatfield), Patricia Bye (described as secretary to the “Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff”), a John Billings, and a Mercedes Wilson. The President’s Daily Diary for that June 4, held today in the Reagan Library, records that from 12:28 p.m. to 1:34 p.m. the president and first lady had lunch with Mother Teresa and then escorted her to her motorcade on the South Grounds and bid her farewell. The diary then notes that from 1:34 p.m. to 1:39 p.m. the president “participated in a question and answer session with members of the press” and quickly returned to the Oval Office.

[8] Reagan, “Exchange with Reporters Following a Luncheon with Mother Teresa of Calcutta,” June 4, 1981.

[9] In May 1985, Reagan would award Mother Teresa the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor. Over the years, Mother Teresa wrote and called President Reagan asking for his and his country’s assistance in helping her feed the world’s poor, and always telling the president, “I will pray for you.” On October 19, 1984, for example, she sent Reagan a two-page handwritten letter that closed with the words “I will pray for you.” Reagan responded with a telephone call, as recommended in an October 26, 1984, memo on White House letterhead by staff member Michael A. McManus Jr. Another memo on White House letterhead (no author listed) from September 17, 1987, noted Mother Teresa was expected to call the president. These documents are on file at the Reagan Library.

[10] TASS statement, May 14, 1981, republished in Current Digest of the Soviet Press 33, no. 20 (June 17, 1981): 18.

[11] A. Filippov, “Concerning the Attempt on the Life of John Paul II,” Pravda, May 15, 1981, republished in Current Digest of the Soviet Press 33, no. 20 (June 17, 1981): 18.

[12] M. Mikhailov, “Red Herring,” Izvestia, September 8, 1981, republished in Current Digest of the Soviet Press 33, no. 36 (October 7, 1981): 16.

[13] Claire Sterling, The Time of the Assassins (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1985), 134–35, 151–52, 164, 167–69, 183.


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The Blind-Compliance of Cookie-Cutter Liberals

democrats-peaceful-protestProgressive ‘Rights’ By Any Other Name Is Tyranny

James Tennant

February, 2017

The Progressives are raging on about the Trump administration’s “tyranny” although they are vague on the particulars of why his regime should be characterized as such and, indeed, on whatever the term “tyranny” might mean (I say this noting that the Progressive meaning of words often bears little semblance to the Oxford standard. For instance, banning those who hold contrary opinion is called “tolerance” in Progressivese). In this environment, I’m disposed to offer a few illustrations of that word “tyranny” for their consideration.anti-trump-hate

Tyranny is when you riot in the street in the hope of overturning a fairly contested election. It’s when the failed candidate, her party and their allies in the media spin the narrative that the election was fraudulent and the winner illegitimate.

Tyranny is when you ban all speech that doesn’t affirm your worldview. When teachers dress up their ideology as unimpeachable verity and serve-up caricaturizations of competing views, and when they shame and censure students who question their dogmas. When the purpose of education is to close minds and to mold a compliant population.

blm-protestWhen blinkered students shout down conservative speakers, ban pro-life clubs and vandalize competing displays. When political figures tweet approvingly of these actions saying they are “pleased to see young people taking an active role in democracy.” When university officials give in to mobs and suppress the victims, and when “safe space” and “microaggression” are invoked in order to exclude non-conformers.cops r here

When celebrities conduct two minutes of hate rituals from the podium, and when wealthy individuals and activists manufacture violent demonstrations against ideological opponents. When social media cartels destroy people and businesses who won’t toe their political line. When people live in fear that their political, pro-life or pro-marriage views will be “outed.”

When a regime of political correctness is imposed and human rights inquisitions empowered to punish thought-crimes.

anti libertyWhen news outlets twist the words and actions of those whose views fail to mirror their own editorial policy in an effort to impute heinous motives to them.  Conversely, when these same outlets suppress reports injurious to those holding compliant views; when they doctor video to promote their narrative and air fictitious but damaging stories about their “opponents.” In short, when mainstream news outlets function chiefly as purveyors of partisan propaganda and fake news, as agents of social engineering rather than as facilitators for an informed citizenry.

When you invert the meaning of words, calling those who believe in treating all people equally, “racist” and those who agree to disagree, “intolerant.” When you call your illiberality, “tolerance” and your enforced environment of homogenous thinking, “diversity.” When doublespeak reigns.

When you sling words like “homophobe” and “Islamophobe” to deny the valid concerns of others. When you paper over your racial animus with terms like “white privilege,” your jealousy of successful people with “one-percenter” and your contempt for the family and for men with “feminism” or “the patriarchy.” When you scream for “social justice” and invoke “the web of oppression” in order to condemn the innocent. When you incite hatred towards Christians, Caucasians, men, heterosexuals and successful people, in the name of “equality.”

When government institutions are politicized: the IRS employed to harass opponents, the Justice Department used to shield confederates from criminal investigation, the Supreme Court utilized to engineer social change. When the powerful can destroy evidence in a criminal investigation and escape prosecution or be excused from their position with nothing more than a golden handshake and a “thank you for your service” after gross and criminal misuse of their authority. When those with the “right” political views are allowed to operate above the law.

When judges legislate and when they render rulings based on political ideology rather than established law. When the President deliberately appoints SJWs to the courts. When pro-marriage persons are persecuted for their religious beliefs. When the state, through taxation, forces citizens to take part in the murder of millions of American children and when it mandates that medical staff, nuns and other conscientious objectors take part in the culture of death. When the courts are used to compel adherence to dogmatic assertions (that there are more than two genders or that gender is a state of mind, for instance).

When politicians sign away the nation’s sovereignty to international cabals and unelected bureaucrats, when the Executive or Judiciary intrudes into the jurisdiction of the Legislative branch of government, when the Federal government usurps States’ rights, and when government spends the country into oblivion, saddling future generations with the financial liability.

When politicians and activists divide the nation, setting black against white, gay against straight, female against male, the irreligious against the religious and the new immigrant against the established for political gain.

When you release thousands of violent criminals into the population, insist on the right of foreign criminals to continue to victimize American citizens, block measures that would weed out jihadists from immigrant populations and call those who oppose your actions “racist.”

When you slaughter the unborn and the deformed, and when you marginalize the elderly and other “unwanted” people—those who are too weak to fight you—and call it your “right.”

…that, my friends, is tyranny.


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An additional side note from GospelBBQ —

In America – words like tyranny, violence, anarchy, divisiveness, fascism, totalitarianism, suppression, bans, mobs, impose, force, destroy, intimidate, mischaracterize, disenfranchise, marginalize, etc., are just some of the words that rightly describe the words and actions of the left and the Democratic Party. The Democratic Party is the party of bureaucratic tyranny and totalitarianism, making endless rules and laws governing every sphere and aspect of human behavior possible. It is THEY who seek to suppress liberty and freedom by endlessly creating new laws and regulations to further control the behavior of its citizenry. With very little government-oversight bureaucrats enforce a complex array of ill-conceived regulations that choke and suppress the liberties and freedoms that were once the bedrock of the philosophical exceptionalism that America’s idealism stood for.

The philosophical ideals of free-market capitalism (under god) are the opposite of tyranny, fascism, and totalitarianism; in fact, free-market capitalism is the cure for these ills that are in reality the by-products of socialism, communism, and other neo-socialist orders such as Fabianism and Keynesianism. [comment by GospelBBQ]



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Evangelical False-Prophets Promote Anti-Christian Immigration


church-a-floatEvangelical Leaders Twist the Bible to Promote Immigration and Denounce President Trump!

By Dr. Don Boys

February 2017

Last Wednesday (2-8-17), the Washington Post published an open letter from more than 500 “conservative evangelical pastors and leaders…urging President Donald Trump to reverse his temporary pause on refugee resettlement…” Some celebrity names were Bill Hybels, Daniel Akin, Max Lucado, Tim Keller, etc., and the organizer of the open letter was World Relief, the social action arm of the National Association of Evangelicals. Furthermore, the letter did not reveal that World Relief and other groups are paid for each refugee they settle! love-trump-hate-trump

President Trump was trying to be correct, careful, but not callous by putting a temporary halt to refugees from seven Middle East nations. After all, his main responsibility is to keep America safe; and therefore, bringing thousands of Muslims who have no concept of democracy and, in fact, have a dedication to sharia law demands caution.

social idiotLeft wingers, including many (anti-biblical) Evangelicals, are belching out anger, angst, and animus as they twist scripture to use against President Trump’s temporary pause of refugees. And let’s be honest, part of the Evangelical concern is based on money as mentioned above. The many religious groups that settle “refugees” in the U.S. are paid millions of dollars for their altruism. However, altruism is not altruism if there is a profit to be made.

Those religious groups include the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, World Relief, Church World Services, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, Episcopal Migration Ministries, the International Rescue Committee, and the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants. When these groups send out a news release making their case for more immigration, they never mention that they receive $2,050 for each person they settle. Isn’t that an obvious conflict of interest? For sure, it is not full disclosure.washington dc

But it gets worse because all those religious groups must sign a federal waiver that they will not attempt to share the Gospel with the “refugees.” Wait a minute, I thought that was the basic reason all religious groups exist. No, in order to receive federal funds (your tax dollars), these groups agree they will not attempt to win refugees to Christ! It is illegal if they do, the cash will stop flowing. And practically all of the immigrants are Muslim, not Christian. But that’s another column.

But let me get to the twisting of Scripture by religious leaders as they try to convince shallow Christians to swallow the Evangelical ruse and permit unlimited immigration.

The senior pastor of Mosaic Church in Memphis said, “We were once the same kind of refugees. Our families come from similar situations.” No, many of these modern “refugees” chose to break the law and many come unvetted, uninvited, and unwanted to America. President Trump says that won’t happen anymore and for that he is castigated by the haters on the left.

I remind these “do gooders” (as opposed to those who do good) that the Bible often speaks of borders, borders that should be respected. All the major cities in the Ancient Middle East had massive walls, not to keep people in, but to keep gatecrashers from coming in uninvited.

These compromising Evangelical leaders are trying to drive a square peg into a round hole with a sledge hammer, but it simply won’t fit. The President of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, Samuel Rodriquez opined, “It’s about our Christian faith. It’s about Matthew 25 and Leviticus 19. It’s about finding a way where we can reconcile Romans 13, ‘respecting the rule of law.’” No, Sam, like many (phony) Evangelicals, has to twist the Scripture like a pretzel to make it mean what it was never meant to mean.

My critics declare that I am unkind, unreasonable, even unchristian for opposing amnesty, open borders, and sanctuary cities; however, their charge is not based on solid reasoning or the Scripture. They twist the Scripture to make it fit their unreasonable, unconstitutional, and unbiblical demands.

We are told that the illegal immigrants are trying to escape tyranny and poverty so America should make room for them since we are a Christian nation. Does that mean that we must accept any number of aliens? Does it mean that federal officials are not obligated to carefully investigate everyone who wants to stake a claim in America? Almost all my critics and supporters of amnesty and unlimited immigration confuse what a person should do with what a nation should do and they twist the Bible to support their political position.

The Bible twisters almost always use Exodus 23:9 to support their cause of immigration, amnesty, and sanctuary cities; however they use a flawed hermeneutic to build their tenuous case. That verse commands, “Also thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” However, that chapter is dealing with an individual’s obligation to be gracious–not national guidelines for treatment of immigrants. Of course, those religious leaders who use that verse know what they are doing but are being dishonest to give credibility to a very shaky principle.

But that has nothing to do with illegal aliens. Fuzzy-thinking preachers neglect to tell their congregations that the Jews were in Egypt by invitation and were not trespassers. In fact, they were special guests as long as Joseph was alive and a friendly Pharaoh reigned. The Jews had not entered the land illegally as do modern invaders. The Jews were strangers in Egypt but not illegal aliens.

The preceding verses in Ex. 23 verify my contention about this being a personal obligation not a national policy. That passage warns the ancient Jews (and us today) that “Neither shalt thou countenance (give approval) a poor man in his cause.” Moses was warning us about showing favor to a person because of his condition, whether rich or poor. We are not to be swayed by our emotions but by justice. The ancient adage is, “Let justice be done, though the heavens should be dissolved.”

Leviticus 19:33 is also used wrongly: “And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him.” Again, the preceding verses prove that God was giving instructions for personal conduct by warning them not to consume blood; not to get tattoos or pierce their flesh; not to prostitute their daughters; keep the Sabbath days; not to be involved with sorcery and fortune telling, etc. Then He warned them not to vex a stranger living among them. In fact, Moses went on to say, “thou shalt love him as thyself.”

These verses do not apply to the immigration issue even slightly. Illegal aliens purposefully choose to break our laws, even arrogantly demanding entrance into our nation expecting to be cared for upon their arrival. They are not sojourners or strangers but scoundrels (with a few innocent women and children) and are being encouraged to break our laws by many leftwing religious groups, even some Evangelicals.

Most of the “refugees” are plucked out of an alien culture known for being bellicose, backward, and brutal–never knowing or desiring democracy and the rule of law. They arrive in an American city without any input from the citizens who have built the homes, businesses, streets, churches, colleges, hospitals, etc.! Many aliens will no doubt become productive citizens while others will continue their backward lifestyle. Some are or will become terrorists and it only takes one to kill your family or bomb your church.

The National Center for Lesbian Rights issued a statement calling Trump’s temporary order to keep out immigrants from seven nations as “an attack on American values.” Say what! A bunch of lesbians speaking of American values is like an abortionist speaking about his love for children; an arsonist speaking of his commitment to fire safety; and an anarchist boasting of his desire for constitutional government.

The immigration issue, especially as it relates to Trump’s temporary ban, is proof that many (so-called) religious leaders wear pantyhose, silk shorts, shirts with lace around the edge and sniff perfume from frilly handkerchiefs–and are shamelessly called men of God!


Dr. Don Boys is a former member of the Indiana House of Representatives, author of 15 books, frequent guest on television and radio talk shows, and wrote columns for USA Today for 8 years. His shocking book, ISLAM: America’s Trojan Horse!; Christian Resistance: An Idea Whose Time Has Come–Again!; and The God Haters are all available at These columns go to newspapers, magazines, television, and radio stations and may be used without change from title through the end tag. His web sites are,, and Contact Don for an interview or talk show.


A side note from GospelBBQ,

In a self-righteous effort to appear relevant and progressive, the ignorant false-prophets and false teachers of Leftist-Liberal Evangelicalism  have joined with god-hating anti-Christian secular leftists, to parrot the ideals and ethics of humanistic philosophies. As such, they end-up opposing the revelation of God’s law-word — this antinomianism, the rejection of God’s laws and ways is a similar replay of OT Israel’s killing of the prophets of God; and the Pharisees rejection of Jesus as their true messiah.

It is also disingenuous and hypocritical for any brand of “leftist liberal” to refer to America as a “Christian nation” when they normally denounce any such concept of America (apparently because the Founder’s were not perfect enough as Christians) Most Liberals are under the mistaken delusion that America was formed as a totally secular state. So, when they use the term “Christian nation” it is likely they are using it disengenuously as a “guilt trip” manipulation for whatever twisted government sponsored cause they are trying to promote.

Historically in America, individuals, Churches, Clubs, Corporations, Foundations, Non-Profits, etc.,  extended compassion in helping refugees and many others in need. This was done in a voluntary environment without the government usurping the law and forcing “refugees” to come to America (most of whom did not want to come to America). Even if the government wants to step in and offer help, there are a variety of ways to do so without forcing huge numbers of foreign refugees on its citizenry.

As we have previously learned, the government under President Obama along with state and city governments held secret meetings to hide the placement of refugees. For example:

128 pages of documents obtained by Judicial Watch lawyers, from the mayor of Rutland, Vermont, showing a concerted effort by the mayor and private organizations to conceal from the public their plans to resettle 100 Syrian refugees in the small southern Vermont town.

The documents include an April 14, 2016, email from Amila Merdzanovic, executive director of the Vermont Refugee Resettlement Program, to Mayor Christopher Louras;  she said in part,

I want to share with you the concern my HQ has about holding a public forum. If we open it up to anybody and everybody, all sorts of people will come out of woodwork. Anti-immigrant, anti-anything. They suggest that the forum be invite only but make it as wide as possible. Work with faith leaders, United Way, etc…

The mayor and resettlement organizations shrouded the plan in such secrecy that not even the town’s aldermen were informed of what was taking place behind closed doors. The aldermen eventually wrote to the U.S. Department of State protesting the plan and opened an investigation into the mayor’s actions.

Amila Merdzanovic later told the Boston Globe that the hidden talks were “the right thing to do — to move slowly, keep it to a small circle of people, and then expand.” On April 10, 2016, she wrote to the director of the State Refugee Office about her coordination with the mayor to keep the resettlement program secret.

The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, a nonprofit based in Virginia, is the parent organization of the Vermont Refugee Resettlement Program working with the mayor’s office. According to its financial statements the Committee received $46,560,462 of its $50,858,706 (or 91.45%) for fiscal year 2015 from “government grants.”

Previously, the Obama administration coordinated with The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to settle these individuals all across the U.S. The federal government contracts with non-profits and other entities to settle and provide financial payments to refugees.

So, if this was such righteous work that would bring blessings to communities, why was it shrouded in so much secrecy — to fool and deceive local citizens until it was too late to oppose being forced to comply? [comment by GospelBBQ]


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30,000+ Scientists Declare “Climate Change Hoax”

light and darkness97% of Scientists DON’T Agree With “Climate Change”

By Dr. Tom Barrett

Obama and the Liberals have claimed for years that 97% of scientists believe in the fake science of “Climate Change.” It turns out that is just another big lie, as recent surveys prove. In fact, over 30,000 scientists, 1/3 of them Ph.D.’s, have signed a document declaring that they DON’T buy in to “Climate Change. In fact, they say it’s a hoax!APTOPIX Lightning Weather

“Climate Change” is a huge, profitable business. Al Gore has gotten rich from this junk science industry. In fact, his personal net worth has grown 500% since he became the spokesman for climate change.

American’s have such short memories. Many of the same scientists who are on the climate change bandwagon today used to call it “Global Cooling” in the 1970’s. A new ice Age was upon us, and mankind would be eradicated by freezing to death. Unfortunately for their credibility, we’re still alive and have not turned into Popsickles. Interestingly, several thousand articles about “Global Cooling” were mysteriously erased from Wikipedia and other sites in the past few years.

sunWhen “Global Cooling” was debunked they switched the name to “Global Warming.” The polar ice caps were going to melt, the oceans would rise, and we would all drown. We didn’t drown. And the same historical revisionism was brought into play again. Articles about “Global Warming” were deleted. And many scientists who corrected the record on Wikipedia found their changes deleted over and over again.double rainbow

The attempts to alter history and erase all links to the thousands of articles and records of the hundreds of “Global Cooling” and “Global Warming” conferences is very well documented here:…/massive-cover-up-exposed-285-pa…/…

Temperatures don’t always rise, as they claimed in “Global Warming.” Nor do they always fall (“Global Cooling”). Tired of defending the indefensible, they changed the name to “Climate Change.” That was safe – because the climate is always changing!

distant sunThe problem for the Liberal climate change fanatics is that – according to an eminent scientist – the reason the climate regularly changes is because of solar flares. Retired senior NASA atmospheric scientist John L. Casey has revealed that solar cycles are largely responsible for warming periods on Earth – not human activity.

So what’s next? Some of the climate weirdos want to change the name of this fake “emergency” to “Climate Disruption.” But the main reason* the Liberal Left is so intent on blaming humanity for changes in the climate is that they hate petroleum energy. So some have proposed calling any change in climate – whether warming or cooling – “Carbon Pollution.” Al Gore, who has become a laughingstock for his many false predictions, reportedly likes this name because it conjures up a picture of a huge black cloud of carbon hanging over the earth.firecooking

Real science has documented that the climate has changed in both directions since the beginning of time. So it is obviously not human activity that has caused it – unless someone can explain how the cooking fires of ancient nomadic tribes could cause massive shifts in the earth’s climate.

Scientists as far back as Benjamin Franklin have documented the massive effect of volcanoes of our planet’s climate. In fact, one group of scientists found that the eruption of just one volcano – Mount St. Helens in 1980, which spewed ash over 11 states – had far more impact on our climate than ALL human activity that year. And there are hundreds of volcanic eruptions every year.

lightning strikeWhether the real cause of the regular shifts between cooler and warmer weather is caused by solar flares, volcanoes, or other natural phenomena, one thing is certain. The puny human race has next to no impact on climate when compared to the massive power of the sun or multiple volcanic eruptions.

It would be nice if all the climate freaks spent their time doing something useful – like discouraging their fellow Leftists from rioting, burning, looting and attacking innocent bystanders and police officers every time they don’t approve of a new law, a presidential order, or the way a court ruled.


Dr. Tom Barrett has been a pastor for almost 40 years and currently oversees ordained ministers in South Florida. He has always been a bi-vocational minister, working in the financial services arena as a Branch Manager and National Vice President. He is a Patriot who has studied and taught the Constitution in both church and secular settings. A prolific author he has written a book on Conservative principles (The Best of Conservative Truth) and has written over a thousand feature articles that have been published in local and national newspapers as well as on the Internet. He speaks nationally on the Christian foundations of or our nation and its Constitution, and internationally on Biblical financial principles. He has lectured at seminaries, universities, economic summits, churches, and the International Money Shows. His websites are (writing); (ministry); and http://www.DrTom.TV (personal).

Article from iPatriot:

  • It is the opinion of GospelBBQ that “Global Warming” and/or “Climate Change” are merely tools used by Globalist-minded leaders to extract (steal) as much capital as possible to use for (anti-Christian) “worldwide wealth redistribution” from the so-called richer nations to the poorer nations.


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