The Patriot Post® · Daily Digest
“[I]t is a maxim, founded upon the universal experience of mankind, that no nation is to be trusted farther than it is bound by its interest; and no prudent statesman or politician will venture to depart from it.” –George Washington, Letter to Henry Laurens, 1778
TOP 5 RIGHT HOOKS
When he was arrested Saturday and charged with one count of discharging a weapon inside a vehicle, two counts of first degree assault and three counts of armed criminal action, Jeffrey Williams admitted to shooting two police officers outside the Ferguson Police Department headquarters March 12. But his story doesn’t add up. Williams said he had a dispute with someone and the cops were collateral damage; he never meant to shoot officers. But the physical evidence suggests something else. Williams fired his .40-caliber handgun about 120 yards away from inside a vehicle and managed to hit two police officers standing next to each other. Aim small, miss small. Furthermore, there’s disagreement as to who Williams is in the drama unfolding in Ferguson. On Sunday, Ferguson police said they saw Williams amid the protesters. But protesters deny Williams’ participation in their movement. Of course they’d deny him; he’s messing up the Left’s narrative.
Give the government credit for actually trying to enforce immigration law. The Department of Homeland Security arrested the operators of four Los Angeles Schools for running a scam that allowed immigrants to stay in the U.S. on a student visa without actually going to school. When the DHS stopped in unannounced at one school, they discovered only three foreign students attending an English class – even though the school said 900 foreign students attended regularly. In a statement, Acting U.S. Attorney Stephanie Yonekura said, “Officials at several schools allegedly abused their responsibility to ensure that only legitimate foreign students were allowed to stay in the country. This type of fraud against the United States will be thoroughly examined to bring those responsible to justice and to protect the integrity of our immigration system.” Such examples of abuse upend the Obama administration’s rhetoric that immigrants only want to come here for better lives and we shouldn’t fault them if they cheat the system. Ryan Lovelace reports at National Review that 36 terrorists entered the United States on student visas in the past. A lawless administration isn’t helping. More…
Clintonista James Carville is one of the few rushing to defend Hillary Clinton over her secret email servers. But after his most recent comments she may not want his “help” any more. “At the end of the day,” Carville said, “the Republicans can’t pass a budget, alright, [so] we got another investigation, just like we had the Whitewater, just like you go through the file-gate, you go through travel-gate, you go through seven or eight different congressional committees. And you wonder why the public is not following this? Because they know what it is.” In other words, Carville says it’s a political distraction contrived by Republicans – a standard talking point. But he wasn’t finished, adding, “I suspect she didn’t want Louie Gohmert rifling through her emails, which seems to me to be a kind of reasonable position for someone to take. It amounts to … nothing but a bunch of people flapping their jaws about nothing.” Oops. Hillary Clinton just wanted to avoid congressional oversight. How inconvenient to have Congress “rifling through her emails.” Who’d want that? Of course, that oversight is precisely the point, but the Clintons have always played by their own rules.
In remarks to the Atlantic Council, which bills itself as “an essential forum for navigating the dramatic economic and political changes defining the twenty-first century,” State Secretary John Kerry presented skeptics of man-made global warming a lesson on science. “When an apple falls from a tree,” he explained, “it will drop toward the ground. We know that because of the basic laws of physics. Science tells us that gravity exists, and no one disputes that.” He continued, “Science also tells us that when the water temperature drops below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, it turns to ice. No one disputes that. So when science tells us that our climate is changing and human beings are largely causing that change, by what right do people stand up and just say, ‘Well, I dispute that, or I deny that elementary truth’?” For starters, science once pontificated earth was flat. And earth was the center of the universe. And high-cholesterol diets ensured heart disease. And socio-economic collapse resulting from global warming should already have happened. And… You get the picture. What Kerry won’t admit is that there is no “scientific consensus” on the issue, and even if there was it wouldn’t make one iota of difference. Climate change is well documented through the ages. So while Kerry disses “climate deniers,” as they like to call us, he’s only illuminating his complete ignorance of history.
Now that meteorological winter 2014-2015 is in the books (though the season isn’t formally recognized as ended until the Spring Equinox on March 20), anti-fossil fuel gurus are warning that, despite frigid cold spells over the Eastern United States, overall it was the 19th warmest on record. “Averaged together,” weather.com reported, “temperatures across the country this winter were 2.1 Fahrenheit degrees above the 20th-century mean, according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.” Moreover, based on measurements from the National Snow & Ice Data Center, seasonal ice buildup in the Arctic is on pace to set a new record low. So it’s officially time to freak out, right? Well, no. Before you start preparing for The Great Climate Apocalypse, consider this:
“The Arctic Ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consul Ifft, at Bergen, Norway.
"Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers, he declared, all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met with as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes. Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very warm.
"Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared. Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while vast shoals of herring and smelts, which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds.”
That sounds awfully familiar because that’s exactly what alarmists are clamoring about today. Only the excerpt is from an article published by the Associated Press on Nov. 2 … 1922. Nearly a century later, it still appears the climate is, well, repetitious. As are propagandists on a mission.
For more, visit Right Hooks.
Gallup conducted a poll of 1,025 Americans March 5-8 that captured the nation’s growing disgust with the federal government. But the Leftmedia stopped one question short of finding the real reason for this discontent.
“Dissatisfaction with government” now beats out concerns of the economy, terrorism, illegal immigration and unemployment, despite the direct influence of these pocketbook and kitchen-table issues. Don’t underappreciate these rankings. Survey participants most frequently respond to questions through the prism of, “I’m concerned because this issue impacts me directly.”
So why, Mr. or Mrs. American, do you have this increasing dissatisfaction with government?
It boils down to one word, and, no, it’s not racism. It’s “Obama.”
When Barack Obama declared with glee that we are “days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America,” most voters failed to fully realize the magnitude of his plans. Few understood that a community organizer raised on the milk of anger, hate and socialist indoctrination would so quickly shred the Constitution. But our Founders warned of such tyranny.
How many Democrats or even Republicans back in 2008 imagined Obama would so egregiously overstep the jurisdiction of the executive branch through ObamaCare’s implementation and effective amnesty? Or that today he would be on the verge of a nuclear agreement with Iran, giving the world’s leading terrorist sponsor much of what it wants?
Have you ever dined at a restaurant described as some delightful experience or marketed to fulfill your culinary dreams only to leave with an excessive tab, disastrous service and a meal you could’ve cooked better at home?
Obama marketed himself with promises of transparency, a government that serves all Americans, and all-around, feel-good “Hope ‘n’ Change™.
Yet after six years, the American people have endured lie after lie. To name but a few:
- "If you like your plan, you can keep your plan.”
- “I didn’t set a red line on Syria.”
- “I didn’t call the Islamic State a ‘JV team.’”
- “Republicans have filibustered 500 pieces of legislation.”
- “The sequester is not something I’ve proposed.”
- “Here’s what happened [at Benghazi]. … You had a video that was released by somebody who lives here, sort of a shadowy character who – who made an extremely offensive video directed at – at Muhammad and Islam.”
The distrust that has been sown, watered, fertilized and is now at full harvest is a testament to Obama’s successful “transformation” of America. He has left Americans with buyer’s remorse of monumental proportions. Voters didn’t bargain for this mess – even if some of us tried to warn them.
Democrats were walloped in two straight midterm elections, which served notice to everyone but a petulant Obama that his policies, his tactics and his results were rejected. Those Democrats who remain in elected office either have to distance themselves from the radical in the White House, or they represent districts where voters embrace Obama’s radical policies.
The Obama approach to elections has been to place each voter in some interest group – black, homosexual, pro-abortion, illegal immigrant, etc. – and win by mobilizing those groups nationally. Identity politics worked for Obama but failed most Americans.
If there’s a silver lining, it’s that Chief Radical Obama’s failed policies have resulted in a weak bench of leftist extremists down the ballot. The Republican wave was so thoroughly successful that it wiped out vast numbers of state and local Democrats around the nation, from whom the next generation of the party’s leaders will come. It is by no means a permanent defeat, but it’s most certainly a real setback.
Americans are fed up by government because Obama overpromised and under-delivered. His solution to everything is a government program, and, increasingly, Americans are seeing that as the wrong approach.
Now, imagine a nation led by those who say what they mean, mean what they say, and follow through on principled policy. Americans want that type of government leadership and are waiting, impatiently.
A video showing Oklahoma University Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) fraternity members chanting racial slurs and singing about lynching has put the spotlight on the inherent conflict between First Amendment-protected speech and college speech codes begetting “zero tolerance” policies. These policies have mistakenly enshrined the “right” not to be offended.
There is little question the chant was offensive. “There will never be a n—– at SAE. There will never be a n—– at SAE. You can hang him from a tree, but he can never sign with me. There will never be a n—– at SAE,” belted out students on one of five buses chartered to take them to a Founder’s Day party at a country club in Oklahoma City two Saturdays ago.
The fraternity’s national organization conducted its own investigation and announced it was shutting down the OU chapter. “We apologize for the unacceptable and racist behavior of the individuals in the video, and we are disgusted that any member would act in such a way,” its statement reads. “Furthermore, we are embarrassed by this video and offer our empathy not only to anyone outside the organization who is offended but also to our brothers who come from a wide range of backgrounds, cultures and ethnicities.”
All well and good, but then University President David Boren crossed the line. He expelled two students identified as leaders of the chant, using the dubious rationale that has usurped the Constitution on far too many college campuses. It is the idea that offensive speech creates a hostile learning environment, and, as night follows day, such an environment engenders a “zero tolerance” policy. “I have emphasized that there is zero tolerance for this kind of threatening racist behavior at the University of Oklahoma,” said Boren. “I hope that the entire nation will join us in having zero tolerance of such racism when it raises its ugly head in other situations across our country.”
Barbara Arnwine, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, claims Bowen and OU “would’ve been compelled to do something” or the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division would have gotten involved via Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. Title VI “prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin in programs and activities receiving federal financial assistance.”
Several legal scholars weighed in on the issue, and most believe the university trampled the Constitution.
“The courts are very clear that hateful, racist speech is protected by the First Amendment,” said Erwin Chemerinsky, a constitutional scholar and dean of the law school at the University of California, Irvine. UCLA constitutional expert Eugene Volokh agrees, explaining there is no constitutional exception for speech that creates the aforementioned hostile environment, nor speech that simply refers to violence absent a direct threat to an individual.
Geoffrey Stone, a professor of law at the University of Chicago, addressed the Title VI argument, noting that it is intended to combat literal discrimination, and statements by students in a private environment aren’t close to violating it. “The statements were made in the innocuous setting of a bus,” he explained, “and any disruption came from the showing of the video, not from the students’ speech.”
Volokh also tackled the burden of proof issue, explaining the university might be able to discipline students involved in the frat’s admissions decisions if they can be shown to “have denied membership to people based on race, or intentionally tried to communicate to potential members that they would deny them membership that way.” And while SAE may insist that those who depart from its principles no longer use its name, and students who have engaged in the chant may pay a social and economic price for their actions in the court of public opinion, Volokh insists the government or University of Oklahoma “generally cannot add to this price, whether the offensive speech is racist, religiously bigoted, pro-revolutionary, or expressive of any other viewpoint, however repugnant it might be.”
On the other hand, the university might pay a price for expelling those students based solely on what they said. A board representing OU’s disbanded SAE chapter hired lawyer Stephen Jones, who served as Timothy McVeigh’s lead defense attorney during the Oklahoma City bombing trial, “to assist [it] in evaluating” its legal position, Jones revealed. He further explained he was retained “to protect the due process rights, the First Amendment rights, and the Fourteenth Amendment rights” of the fraternity’s members. The board is primarily concerned about their “physical safety,” Jones said, adding that some of them “have frankly been afraid to go to class.”
Jones outlined the parameters of a possible lawsuit, insisting the university’s response to the video was a “premature rush to judgment” that implicitly painted all fraternity members “with a tar brush” identifying them as bigots or racists.
For far too long, university campuses have been strangled by political correctness that actively promotes a stultifying conformity at best, and outright totalitarianism at worst. In his book “Unlearning Liberty,” Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) president Greg Lukianoff chronicles hundreds of examples of campuses where the need for “intellectual comfort,” an obsession to punish those who “offend,” the emergence of “free speech zones,” and student demands for “trigger warnings” for “sensitive” course materials have rendered the free and open exchange of ideas completely obsolete. Even worse, students who fail to abide by such restrictions face mandatory sensitivity training, kangaroo student courts where they are presumed guilty until proven otherwise – or, as this case and many others like it indicate, expulsion for constitutionally protected speech.
America has long abided the immortal words attributed to Voltaire: “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.” That is the essence of the First Amendment, and it doesn’t evaporate once one steps onto a college campus – no matter who gets offended by something as “uncomfortable” as Freedom of Speech.
For more, visit Right Analysis.
TOP 5 RIGHT OPINION COLUMNS
- Tony Perkins: Stop and Go Trafficking
- Burt Prelutsky: America’s Suicide Note
- Jeff Jacoby: Campaign Contributions and Double Standards
- Peggy Noonan: Hillary Seems Tired, Not Hungry
- Larry Kudlow: King Dollar Naysayer Nonsense
For more, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
The Gipper: “The Founding Fathers knew a government can’t control the economy without controlling people. And they knew when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose.”
FRC president Tony Perkins: “Senate Democrats would rather yield to human trafficking than put a stop to taxpayer-funded abortion! … Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) party didn’t pass the bill to find out what’s in it – but they got close. Obviously, a number of Democrats still think reading legislation is overrated, even at a manageable 68 pages. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), who like a growing number of leaders, wants to end one of the greatest human rights crises of our time, was stunned earlier [last] week when his colleagues on the other side of the aisle suddenly – and vehemently – objected to the proposal’s text. Like most spending bills, Cornyn’s Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act included routine language that bans taxpayer-funded abortions. For almost four decades, it’s been standard U.S. policy, through the Hyde Amendment, that taxpayer dollars not be used to kill innocent unborn children. That must be news to Democrats, who exploded in outrage a full two weeks after they voted the bill out of committee. … In the Judiciary Committee, they tried to amend the same pages the Hyde Amendment was on! … A measure that was supposed to free women from bondage is itself being taken hostage by a party too obsessed with abortion to care about the hurting.”
Columnist Burt Prelutsky: “It seems to me that when the President or members of Congress question the constitutionality of an executive edict or a piece of legislation, it should be fast-tracked to the Supreme Court. Why should it have to go through lower courts when everyone knows the final decision is inevitably going to rest with the Supremes? It’s obviously far more important to decide whether Obama had the authority to change the Affordable Care Act a dozen times or grant executive amnesty to five million illegal aliens than whether the justices give their blessing to same-sex marriages. And just maybe if the justices didn’t take four month vacations, they’d have time to do both.”
Twitter satirist @weknowwhatsbest: “Barack & Michelle took separate jumbo jets to Hollywood on the same day. I’m sure the combined 32 tires were inflated properly to save fuel.”
Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform – Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen – standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.