“The truth is, all might be free if they valued freedom, and defended it as they ought.” –Samuel Adams, Essay in the Boston Gazette, 1771
TOP 5 RIGHT HOOKS
‘Constitutional Tipping Point’
Leftist constitutional professor Jonathan Turley, who teaches law at George Washington University, told Congress Wednesday that Barack Obama’s “accelerating” expansion of executive power is bringing us to a “constitutional tipping point.” He added, “The fact that I happen to think the president is right on many of these policies does not alter the fact that I believe the means he is doing [it] is wrong, and that this can be a dangerous change in our system. And our system is changing in a very fundamental way. And it’s changing without a whimper of regret or opposition.” Indeed, his primary criticism was of Congress and the courts for letting the president get away with it. If such executive actions are left unchallenged, he warned, the precedent will solidify, making it harder to address in the future. The Founders set up checks and balances for this very reason – each branch will seek expanded power if the other two don’t check and balance it.
The ‘Heckler’s Veto’
On Cinco de Mayo 2010, a number of students at a California school came to class wearing American flag apparel. Citing a history of conflict between Anglo and Latino students, however, the school cracked down on the Anglos, demanding that they cover up the flags or go home. On Thursday, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court ruled unanimously that the school did not violate students’ free speech rights. The ruling is a “classic ‘heckler’s veto,’” says legal blogger Eugene Volokh, “because behavior that gets rewarded gets repeated. The school taught its students a simple lesson: If you dislike speech and want it suppressed, then you can get what you want by threatening violence against the speakers.”
‘My Brother’s Keeper’
Big government is central to leftist ideology. Government must supply your every need, unless you’re wealthy or white, in which case it will take from you and give to another. In that spirit, Barack Obama announced another new racially discriminatory federal program called “My Brother’s Keeper,” which seeks to increase “opportunities” for “young men of color” via $200 million in federal spending and a “task force” to identify best practices. And here we thought profiling was passé. As National Review’s Roger Clegg asks, “[W]hat kind of message is given to blacks and Latinos when they are told that their young men are so problematic that they have to be singled out for special help to ensure that they don’t screw up?”
Somehow, ObamaCare’s horrible news never ceases to amaze us. National Review’s Jillian Kay Melchior reports the latest: “A terrorist from Jordan briefly worked as an Obamacare navigator in Illinois while authorities remained unaware of her conviction for involvement in a deadly grocery store bombing and two other attacks.” When she was 21, Rasmieh Yousef Odeh helped carry out the plot while a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a Marxist-Leninist terrorist group. The bomb was hidden within a candy box on a grocery store shelf. When it detonated, it killed two students, Eddie Joffe and Leon Kanner, and wounded numerous others. But not to worry; Harry Reid says the horror stories aren’t true.
Black Abortions, Continued
Last week, we reported that more black babies are aborted than born in New York City. This week’s news from Mississippi is no better. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, from 1995 to 2010 an astounding 72% of babies aborted in Mississippi were black. That’s 39,052 black babies out of a total of 54,484. The abortion rate for all races in Mississippi has decreased steadily since 1995, but it remains tragic. Just as Planned Parenthood founder and noted eugenicist Margaret Sanger intended.
For more, visit Right Hooks.
Tactics and Strategy in Arizona
Arizona Republican Gov. Jan Brewer on Wednesday vetoed controversial Senate Bill 1062, which was intended to protect religious liberty for business owners who chose not to provide services on religious grounds. The governor was under immense pressure from every direction to issue a veto. Naturally, leftist groups vehemently objected, but even Republicans from Mitt Romney and John McCain to two of the state legislators who initially voted for the bill urged a veto.
Brewer said she worried the bill was too “broadly worded” and that it “could result in unintended and negative consequences.” She conceded that “long-held norms about marriage and family are being challenged as never before,” but she said the bill in question “has the potential to create more problems than it purports to solve.” She claimed, “I have not heard of one example in Arizona where a business owner’s religious liberty has been violated.” In the end, the political reality was that the homosexual lobby and their Leftmedia mouthpieces already had full control of the debate and they were making Arizona a lightning rod, so Brewer had little choice.
But how about a look at the facts? Arizona’s bill was an amendment to Arizona’s 1999 Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which, like 17 other state laws, mirrored a federal law by the same name written by then-Rep. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and signed into law by Bill Clinton in 1993. (How times have changed.) A bipartisan group of law professors wrote Gov. Brewer laying out its rationale: “SB1062 would amend the Arizona RFRA to address two ambiguities that have been the subject of litigation under other RFRAs. It would provide that people are covered when state or local government requires them to violate their religion in the conduct of their business, and it would provide that people are covered when sued by a private citizen invoking state or local law to demand that they violate their religion.” All it would grant is the right to claim religious beliefs as a legal defense; it did not guarantee legal victory to either side.
That’s it. Nothing about homosexuals or discrimination or hate.
The Heritage Foundation’s Ryan T. Anderson explains that “because of constant misrepresentation in the media, a bill that never mentioned gays, lesbians, marriage or same-sex anything was labeled anti-gay Jim Crow legislation. In truth the bill merely protected religious liberty and took nothing away from anyone.” Furthermore, neither sexual orientation nor so-called gender identity are currently protected classes under Arizona law, or most other states’ law. Yet despite the apocalyptic claims of mass discrimination that would result from the now-vetoed bill, somehow such discrimination isn’t already happening.
In truth, the bill was written in large part because the homosexual agenda seeks to discriminate against Christians. Witness the numerous lawsuits around the country against bakers, florists and photographers who wish not to condone same-sex weddings by providing services for them. Would these same thought police force a Jew to cater a Nazi event? Or a black person to dry clean KKK robes? Yet when it comes to the homosexual agenda, where leftists can’t win affirmation they want coercion; intolerance in the name of tolerance. Religious liberty is sacrificed at the altar of that agenda, which aims to radically redefine civilization’s centuries-old building block.
Even so, legislation like Arizona’s must be pursued strategically. This was a tactical move – however right it was – but proponents were badly outflanked, in part by another GOP circular firing squad. The real issue was religious liberty, but when the bill’s opponents successfully rewrote the narrative, the battle was lost.
Reid Throws Down the Gauntlet
When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said, “There’s plenty of horror stories being told [about ObamaCare] – all of them are untrue,” most questioned his understanding of reality. After all, it’s regularly reported that businesses have cut hours, premiums have increased, and millions of Americans couldn’t keep plans they liked. As Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell put it, “Why in the world would people be calling us with these stories if they were not true?”
Moreover, many of those employees who have seen their hours cut are those who work in the public sector. Unlike the federal government, budgets there have to be balanced and something has to give. “Are we supposed to lay off full-time teachers so that we can provide insurance coverage to part-time employees?” asked one exasperated Connecticut school superintendent. State and local governments around the country have carefully cut hours to keep part-time employees from making the magic 30-hour weekly threshold where benefits have to be provided under the “Affordable” Care Act.
With the increase in premiums, it’s also become clear that even people who sign up aren’t willing to pay – up to 20% of those who signed up before Jan. 1 hadn’t paid a premium by month’s end, reported The New York Times. Of course, this assumes that folks can work through the state exchanges, which in Maryland’s case may now have to be scrapped and rebuilt after they sacked the original contractor. Maybe that’s why the vast majority of that state’s residents who signed up were placed in Medicaid instead of securing private insurance.
So we have what is charitably being called a “train wreck” in the news as the 2014 elections approach, and Democrats who face the voters this November are panicky about their prospects.
Of course, Reid is exempt from accountability because he’s not up for re-election until 2016. But someone else with an eye on the 2016 campaign is trying to straddle the fence with a position as one of mending the law but not ending it. Speaking before a group of health care professionals in Florida, Hillary Clinton noted that, “Part of the challenge is to clear away all the smoke and try to figure out what is working and what isn’t. … It would be a great tragedy, in my opinion, to take away what has now been provided.” Considering it’s an idea she tried to implement two decades ago, it’s obvious she’s not believing the horror stories either.
For more, visit Right Analysis.
TOP 5 RIGHT OPINION COLUMNS
- Joe Bastardi: Something Old, Something New
- David Limbaugh: Big Brother vs. Little Sisters
- Mona Charen: Modern Family?
- Michelle Malkin: When Will America End Cash-for-Visas Racket?
- Charles Krauthammer: Putin’s Ukraine Gambit
For more, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Columnist David Limbaugh: “It’s not enough that Obama has imposed a mandate on a formerly free America to compel people to purchase health insurance under his woefully inferior new health care scheme. He is insistent on gratuitously forcing it on those whose faith-driven consciences object to the mandate, even when exempting them surely wouldn’t impair the workings of his already chaotic law. This president doles out exemptions like candy for his friends and supporters when he has absolutely no legal authority to do so. But when he is legally required to exempt people (on religious liberty grounds), he refuses. What’s the common denominator here? Obama gets his way and the law be damned – period! The will of the people matters – if Obama says it does and not if he doesn’t.”
Columnist Mona Charen: “[T]he other piece of the puzzle regarding married men and work is love and appreciation. Married men work harder because they know they are working for the welfare of those they love. Married women probably convey their gratitude to their husbands for providing the security they and the children need, and this cements a man’s place in the world. The ‘marriage premium’ doesn’t work for cohabitating men, nor for those who father children they don’t raise. The ‘piece of paper’ matters. Something to consider the next time someone celebrates the decline of ‘traditional’ marriage.”
British writer W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965): “There are two good things in life – freedom of thought and freedom of action.”
Comedian Argus Hamilton: “Obama addressed HHS volunteers in Washington Tuesday and told them they were doing God’s work by signing up young people for Obamacare. It’s just like clockwork. During the second term in office, every president starts referring to himself in the third person.”
Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team
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