The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest
IN TODAY’S EDITION
- Stop blaming guns when culture and government schools have so devolved.
- The hate directed at Billy Graham actually reveals the power of his message.
- Campus collectivism should come with a higher price tag.
- Saving the persecuted Christians around the world.
- Why does the Supreme Court keep avoiding Second Amendment cases?
- Hollywood has major problems, but 94% of its women probably haven’t been harassed.
- Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.
“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” —John Adams (1798)
By Thomas Gallatin
President Donald Trump met Wednesday with survivors from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre for a 90-minute “listening session.” During the meeting, Trump pointedly asked, “Does anyone have any idea of how to stop [school shootings]?” Various suggestions were made, and thankfully many of them did not focus solely on gun control measures, but most of the offered solutions still missed the larger underlying issues feeding the problem.
Meanwhile, a town hall meeting in Florida sought to address the problem of school shootings as well, only this event featured more of the Left using teenagers as human shields to advance an anti-Second Amendment agenda. Sen. Marco Rubio was specifically targeted for his support of the NRA and was pressed to disavow and refuse accepting any future funding from the pro-Second Amendment organization. It was purely a political hit-job designed to blame the Parkland atrocity on Republicans and Second Amendment supporters, rather than any serious introspection on the underlying causes. The twisted implication is that any NRA-supporting or supported politician wants children to die.
Of course, it is much easier to focus on a symptom than the core problem — and guns are not the problem.
What has changed within America over the decades? First, there has been an undeniable systemic disintegration of the American family — most notably, the devaluation of fatherhood and the nuclear family. Much of the fault for this disintegration lies with the government’s failed “Great Society” programs, which resulted in generations of poor Americans enslaved on urban poverty plantations in every major city nationwide. Those urban cesspools have fomented culture devolution.
Second, forced government schooling: By mandating that all children be educated in government schools, tax dollars were allocated only to state schools, effectively forcing children from lower-income households into failing inner-city schools. To this day the Democrat Party continues to fight against providing parents “school choice” options for their children, leaving those children trapped in failing schools.
Third, aggressive school secularization: Rather than allowing schools to be a reflection of the broad American religious culture and permitting the free expression of religion within the public school, the government mandated that schools become anti-religious — in effect, expelling God. Leftist jurists outlawed prayer in school, as well as the teaching of Biblical moral concepts, both of which were replaced with radical socialist and anti-religious ideas — with devastating results.
Fourth, moral and cultural disintegration: Children have been taught that a range of immoral ideals are perfectly normal, probably the most significant being human sexuality. The old mores have been dispensed with; initially it was the notion that sex outside of marriage was perfectly acceptable, then sexually deviant behavior was embraced as normal. Lately, the biologically obvious and fundamental scientific concept of binary gender has itself been attacked and called offensive. And don’t forget the problems of drugs and gangs.
So why are we shocked when one of these kids, raised up in a culture and government school system that increasingly promote immorality and lawlessness, attacks a school? The big problem here is that mass media, much of the public and politicians rush to blame the tool used to commit the crime rather than soberly asking about the common factors that cause disillusioned, sociopathic young men to attack and kill the innocent, or the policies that centralize their targets. It certainly is not a Second Amendment problem, but something much more systemic to centralized government policies.
By Nate Jackson
In John 15:18, Jesus told his disciples, “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you.” Evangelist Billy Graham, who’s life we celebrated yesterday, was loved my millions, but he was hated by others. That shouldn’t surprise anyone.
Some criticism falls into the category of an atheist simply not appreciating Graham’s work. Such is the case with syndicated columnist George Will’s distasteful grousing today.
Other criticism comes because the “wrong” people say nice things about Graham. Barack Obama tweeted, “Billy Graham was a humble servant who prayed for so many — and who, with wisdom and grace, gave hope and guidance to generations of Americans.” Of course, Obama stood against everything Graham was for, so his praise was at best simply complying with expected etiquette. So, naturally, Obama’s sycophants didn’t think it was appropriate at all.
“Billy Graham was a bigot,” tweeted one in reply. Another retorted, “no he wasn’t he was a piece of s—t.” That Twitterer did not censor his vulgarity. “Graham was a homophobe” who “vehemently hated LGBTQ people” and “destroyed many lives,” replied others.
But the hate-filled bile that takes the cake came from Teen Vogue columnist Lauren Duca, who tweeted, “The big news today is that Billy Graham was still alive this whole time. Anyway, have fun in hell, bi—h.” Again, we censored the crudeness; she didn’t. After backlash, Duca doubled down: “‘Respecting the dead’ only applies to people who weren’t evil pieces of s—t while they were alive, thanks.”
First, what makes this remarkably offensive is that Duca writes for a magazine specifically geared to raising the next generation of Americans. Duca is turning evil on its head, and spreading darkness and hate for Christians to teenagers who may or may not have the filter or responsible adults in their lives to counter it. She joins countless others who have rejected God and teach our young people to do the same.
Second, her comments are ironic in a way — they highlight Billy Graham’s goodness. We’re quite sure he would have embraced her with true forgiveness and love, which she has obviously never experienced. We all fail to do that from time to time, including Graham. But few had their eyes fixed on the prize as he did, embracing real love and forgiveness. We can only hope and pray Duca finds it.
Donald Trump’s listening session with mass shooting survivors was really powerful (Reason)
Parkland JROTC student: CNN gave me “scripted” questions, declines to participate (Washington Examiner)
CNN crowd boos Pro-2A rape survivor (The Daily Caller)
98% of mass shootings happen in “gun free zones” (The Daily Wire)
FDA reduces regulations, approves record number of new generics (Washington Examiner)
Manufacturers to American workers: We’re hiring (RealClearPolitics)
Three-quarters of young Americans don’t qualify for military service (The Washington Free Beacon)
Murder charge filed in fallout from video that shows nurses laughing as dying WWII vet struggles for air (Fox News)
Obama faces progressive backlash for tweet honoring the late Rev. Billy Graham (The Washington Times)
Durham, North Carolina, drops charges against vandals who destroyed Confederate monument (The Daily Wire)
Policy: Income inequality isn’t the problem (Hoover Institution)
Policy: Congress, follow the White House’s lead on CFPB reform (Real Clear Policy)
For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.
By Arnold Ahlert
In a thoughtful piece entitled, “We All Live on Campus Now,” columnist Andrew Sullivan takes a long-held assumption about the college generation’s transition into adulthood and stands it on its proverbial ear.
“Over the last year, the most common rebuttal to my intermittent coverage of campus culture has been: Why does it matter? These are students, after all. They’ll grow up once they leave their cloistered, neo-Marxist safe spaces,” he writes.
For decades, the long-held assumption was that the students who entered the real world would be forced to adapt to the greater society. For the current generation, this rite of passage would mean the progressive worldview they were force-fed on far too many campuses would no longer be considered sacrosanct. Especially with regard to finding employment, the notion one might expect on-the-job accommodations akin to the kind of campus coddling that included post-election “stress busting” activities — as in providing students with play dough, coloring books, Legos, hot chocolate, healing spaces and puppies — was the stuff of adolescent dreams. So too was the assumption that terms such as “white supremacy,” “rape culture,” “white privilege,” or “microaggressions,” would elicit much more than a derisive chuckle, or eye-rolling from the so-called adults in the room.
Sullivan believes this dynamic has been reversed. “When elite universities shift their entire worldview away from liberal education as we have long known it toward the imperatives of an identity-based ‘social justice’ movement, the broader culture is in danger of drifting away from liberal democracy as well,” he warns. “If elites believe that the core truth of our society is a system of interlocking and oppressive power structures based around immutable characteristics like race or sex or sexual orientation, then sooner rather than later, this will be reflected in our culture at large.”
Meanwhile, modern-day liberalism remains all about the acquisition and maintenance of power — by any means necessary.
Political analyst Michael Barone reveals who is best enabling that ambition. “There is increasing evidence that Google, Facebook and Twitter — whose leaders flatter themselves as enablers of free communication and neutral disseminators of information — are suppressing conservative opinions as ‘fake news,’” he warns. “Those aware of campus life will not be comforted with the knowledge that the decisions about what gets downplayed or deleted are being made by ‘social justice warriors’ recently hired from campuses.”
Social justice warriors who, as Sullivan so astutely points out, believe there is no such thing as objective truth. “The culture is now saturated with the concept of ‘your own truth’ — based usually on your experience of race and gender,” he explains. “In the culture, it is now highly controversial for individuals in one racial/gender group to write about or portray anyone outside it — because there is no art that isn’t rooted in identity.”
And if Sullivan is right, the Constitution, and most specifically the Bill of Rights, will not provide the necessary bulwark against America’s would-be oppressors. As Angelo Codevilla warns, “By far the greater part of the restrictions on freedom of speech that we experience come from outside formal government — from academe and corporate America. No one disputes the effective existence of speech codes there. Just beyond the First Amendment’s reach not only does the ruling class penalize expressions at variance with its catechisms; people now feel pressed publicly to confess adherence to their tenets, or else.”
One suspects decent Americans don’t want colleges acting as surrogate parents tasked with protecting students from, rather than exposing them to, divergent ideas. But that is exactly what far too many of them have become.
As a result, Sullivan envisions a dark future. “The goal of our culture now is not the emancipation of the individual from the group, but the permanent definition of the individual by the group,” he explains. “We used to call this bigotry. Now we call it being woke. You see: We are all on campus now.”
If that’s the case, it’s time to rattle the campus cage. Currently there is more than $1.48 trillion in outstanding student loan debt. The average Class of 2016 graduate owes a whopping $37,172, and the current delinquency/default rate is 11.2%. Per the passage of the Affordable Care Act — that’s right, ObamaCare — the American taxpayer is on the hook for any and all student loan defaults. Unsurprisingly tuition costs continue to skyrocket.
It’s time to end that odious dynamic and make colleges themselves partially responsible for loan defaults. If the campus crowd insists on embracing identity politics and the massive diversity bureaucracies necessary to facilitate that agenda — bureaucracies that also drive up tuition costs — they should bear some of the burden when any number of their grievance study graduates can’t find a job with enough compensation to live and pay off their loans.
In short, those universities that seek to change the world, one social justice warrior graduate after another, should have some proverbial skin in the game.
That’s as “being woke” as it gets.
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
Don’t Miss Alexander’s Column
Read Democrat Common Sense — A Non-Sequitur. Whenever the words “common sense” come out of a Democrat’s pie hole, caveat emptor.
Also read Billy Graham Has Gone Home. “My home is in Heaven,” said the Rev. Graham with regularity. “I’m just traveling through this world.”
If you’d like to receive Alexander’s Column by email, update your subscription here.
MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST
- What’s Up With SCOTUS Avoiding Gun Cases? — The latest pass came this week regarding California’s 10-day waiting period for prospective gun buyers.
- 94% of Hollywood Women Have Been Sexually Harassed? — The survey’s salacious claim is dubious, but the underlying cultural rot in Hollywood is undeniable.
- Saving the Persecuted Christians — Multiple studies show that Christians face growing violence and persecution across the globe.
- The Untold Story Behind Huge Natural Disaster Costs — Growing population, too much or insufficient infrastructure, and urban planning all play a role.
- Video: Piers Morgan Gets It … Right? — “There is no evidence linking Trump to any collusion.” And it was Obama’s job to stop the meddling.
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
- Victor Davis Hanson: The Paradoxes of the Mueller Investigation
- Veronique de Rugy: Should Infrastructure Spending Be State, Local or Federal?
- Cal Thomas: The Billy Graham I Knew
- Richard D. Kocur: Three Heads Are Better Than 535
- Ed Feulner: The Trouble With Tariffs
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Victor Davis Hanson: “[Robert] Mueller is under enormous pressure to find collusion between the Trump team and Russia, or to find that the Trump team obstructed justice by trying to hide such collusion. But neither likely happened. Mueller was appointed at a time of national hysteria, brought on by partisan journalism based on a leaked dossier — itself a product of a discredited British agent working with Russian sources while being paid by the Clinton campaign. Worse still, the effort to hide the origins and the use of that dossier to obtain court permission to spy on American citizens may be a classic case of obstruction of justice. Mueller’s existential problem has been with him from the start. Due to the shenanigans of his discredited friend Comey and a rabid media, he was appointed to investigate crimes that did not exist. But if they did exist, collusion and obstruction were committed by those associated with the Clinton campaign and even by members of the Obama administration. Investigating any possible crimes committed by members of the Clinton campaign or the Obama administration apparently is taboo, given the exalted status of both. But every time Mueller seeks to find incidental wrongdoing by those around Trump, he only makes the case stronger that behavior by those involved in the Clinton campaign and the Obama administration should be investigated. If such matters are not treated in an unbiased manner, we are not a nation of equality under the law, but a banana republic masquerading as a democracy.”
For the record: “The biggest Russian rally success appears to have been an anti-Trump event in New York after the election; it drew 10,000 people. … Without Kremlin involvement, half a million women marched against Trump in Washington, DC, and more than three million around the country. The Russians didn’t do anything to us that we weren’t doing to ourselves, although we were doing it on a much larger, more potent scale. The Russians are just aping the arguments we are already having with one other, and the sewerish level of much of the discussion on social media.” —Rich Lowry
Belly laugh of the week: “[The Obama administration] didn’t have a network distorting the truth for it. Donald Trump does.” —MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace
The BIG Lie: “Look, I had plenty of disagreements with Obama, but Obama always put the country first. That is something that McConnell does not do and certainly people like Devin Nunes, who I suspect belongs in jail, has not done.” —Howard Dean
Pompous dribble-boy: “We will definitely not shut up and dribble. I will definitely not do that. I mean too much to society, I mean too much to the youth, I mean too much to so many kids.” —NBA star LeBron James
Braying Jenny: “I’m in total awe of the extraordinary students in Florida. Like every movement for progress in our history, gun reform will take unyielding courage and endurance. But @barackobama and I believe in you, we’re proud of you, and we’re behind you every step of the way.” —Michelle Obama (“We’re behind you” can have more than one meaning…)
Dezinformatsiya: “I want to bring in Kioni Mcgee. He’s a Democrat in the state of Florida, he’s a member of the House, and he is the one that tried to get this assault rifle ban bill put up for a vote. Thanks for your effort [emphasis added].” —MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle
And last… “The biggest problem with the gun control debate has been its failure to boil down slogans to proposals. That problem won’t be alleviated so long as the media insist on putting mourning teenagers on television with the chyron ‘DO SOMETHING.’ Something is nothing unless someone puts some actual proposals on the table.” —Ben Shapiro
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. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.
Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher