Mid-Day Digest

Jan. 10, 2019

THE FOUNDATION

“It should be your care, therefore, and mine, to elevate the minds of our children and exalt their courage; to accelerate and animate their industry and activity; to excite in them an habitual contempt of meanness, abhorrence of injustice and inhumanity, and an ambition to excel in every capacity, faculty, and virtue. If we suffer their minds to grovel and creep in infancy, they will grovel all their lives.” —John Adams (1756)

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IN TODAY’S EDITION

IN BRIEF

Traditional Masculinity Is ‘Harmful’ — Who Knew?

Thomas Gallatin

The American Psychological Association recently released its “guidelines” on masculinity and, to put it bluntly, it’s about as insightful as a barrel full of monkeys. Then again, that may be an insult to monkeys, as they instinctively display more intellectual consistency and credibility than does the APA’s condemnation of “traditional masculinity.” At least monkeys don’t dismiss the natural, innate biological differences between the genders as mere “societal constructs.”

In its “first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys,” the APA asserts, “Traditional masculinity ideology has been shown to limit males’ psychological development, constrain their behavior, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict and negatively influence mental health and physical health.” In fact, “traditional masculinity,” which the APA describes as “stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression,” is “on the whole harmful” to men and boys.

Using leftist buzzwords such as “macroaggression, patriarchy, and cisgender” — the latter referring to a person whose sexual “identity” happens to match their biological gender — the APA concludes that “traditional masculinity” is a societal problem. Clearly, the APA is guided by the leftist theory that gender is a nonbinary social construct rather than a binary reality based upon biology. But even at that, one particular gender is just the worst.

For example, the APA alleges, “Although there are differences in masculinity ideologies, there is a particular constellation of standards that have held sway over large segments of the population, including: anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk, and violence. These have been collectively referred to as traditional masculinity ideology.”

After some backlash, however, the APA attempted to “clarify” its assertion with the following statement: “When we report that some aspects of ‘traditional masculinity’ are potentially harmful, we are referring to a belief system held by a few that associates masculinity with extreme behaviors that harm self and others. It is the extreme stereotypical behaviors — not simply being male or a ‘traditional male’ — that may result in negative outcomes.” But extremes were not the basis for the original APA argument; stereotypes were. So this clarification is actually obfuscation.

The fact remains that maleness or masculinity as well as femaleness or femininity share common, easily recognizable expressions in all cultures and societies across the world. In fact, one of the first things noted when an individual from one cultural group enters another are the natural binary expressions of gender. It is a universal reality based upon the reality of human biology.

National Review’s David French notes an obvious contradiction in the culture’s current “diversity” paradigm, writing, “It is interesting that in a world that otherwise teaches boys and girls to ‘be yourself,’ that rule often applies to everyone but the ‘traditional’ male who has traditional male impulses and characteristics. Then, they’re a problem. Then, they’re often deemed toxic. Combine this reality with a new economy that doesn’t naturally favor physical strength and physical courage to the same extent, and it’s easy to see how men struggle.”

The fact is that true masculinity is designed to complement true femininity. The two are not one and the same, despite the gender-fluid argument the APA now espouses. Nor is “traditional masculinity” harmful to boys. Quite the opposite — they need more of it.

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Shutdown Showdown Is a Barrier to the Wall

Nate Jackson

On Wednesday afternoon, President Donald Trump met once again with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer to hammer out a compromise on the humanitarian and security crisis on our border. A stalemate over funding for a border barrier yielded a partial government shutdown almost three weeks ago. As we expected, however, Democrat leaders refused to negotiate again Wednesday and Trump walked out, declaring the meeting “a total waste of time.” He explained that he wanted to know whether reopening the government now as Democrats want would lead to good-faith negotiations and money for a border barrier later. “Nancy said, NO. I said bye-bye, nothing else works!”

Schumer promptly accused him of a “temper tantrum,” with Pelosi chiming in that he’s a “petulant president.”

On the contrary, Vice President Mike Pence argued, “He left the room today because Speaker Pelosi said that even if he gave her what she wanted, she would never agree to the border-security priorities that we have on the table.” Trump wants $5.7 billion. House Democrat legislation countered with $0.

Trump also reiterated Wednesday, “I have the absolute right to [declare a] national emergency” to build more of the wall. “My threshold will be if I can’t make a deal with people that are unreasonable.” Chuck and Nancy, as he likes to call them, are the definition of unreasonable. Moreover, they are so intractably opposed to anything Trump wants these days that it has — surprise! — a few Republicans in Congress already caving.

After the meeting, Pelosi made emotional appeals about the government workers either furloughed or working without pay. The president “thinks maybe they can just ask their father for more money,” she asserted. “But, they can’t.” It’s true that the situation isn’t easy for government workers and their families. But Trump has declared that all furloughed government workers will receive back pay.

And Pelosi can spare us the crocodile tears and Schumer the feigned outrage. To Democrats, this isn’t about furloughed workers or fiscal management, and they certainly care little for the plight of Americans suffering the myriad consequences of illegal immigration. Democrats’ barrier to the wall is about votes and winning elections, plain and simple.

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ON OUR WEBSITE TODAY

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

TOP HEADLINES

  • Trump to visit border to push for wall as government shutdown talks crumble (USA Today)
  • Record number of families apprehended at southern border in December (National Review)
  • Trump says emergency declaration coming without border deal (The Hill)
  • House passes spending bill to fund IRS, other agencies through Sept. 30 (The Washington Times)
  • Trump, California spar over money for wildfire relief funds (Associated Press)
  • U.S. oil export boom sparks a battle to build Texas ports (Reuters)
  • New York City’s minimum-wage increase is crushing small businesses (The Daily Caller)
  • Greens begin push for nationwide 100% renewable energy mandate (Washington Examiner)
  • PragerU lawsuit claims Google, YouTube violated California law on free speech, discrimination (PJ Media)
  • Humor: “Good evening,” says President Trump, drawing immediate flurry of fact checks (The Babylon Bee)
  • Policy: The two energy futures facing America (Foundation for Economic Education)
  • Policy: Three myths about privacy in tech (American Enterprise Institute)

For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.

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ARMED CITIZEN

Concealed-Carrying Woman Kills Attempted Robber

“A 19-year-old man was shot to death Tuesday morning while attempting to rob a woman in [Chicago]. About 5:45 a.m., [he] approached the woman … displayed a weapon and tried to rob her. … The woman, who was a concealed carry holder, took out her own weapon and fired one shot … striking him in the neck, authorities said.”

For more, visit Chicago Sun-Times.

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TODAY’S MEME

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For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

TODAY’S CARTOON

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For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

Don’t Miss Alexander’s Column

Read Pelosi’s MSM ‘Wrap-Up Smear’ Collusion Against Trump. It’s all about leftists’ unquenchable thirst for statist power, and for them, Americans outside the Beltway are just collateral damage in their quest.

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FEATURED ANALYSIS

Democrats Embrace Anti-Catholic Bigotry

Arnold Ahlert

“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” —Article VI, U.S. Constitution (emphasis added)

Pushed increasingly leftward by a cadre of new members who demand it, the Democrat Party’s animus toward organized religion is becoming impossible to hide. In one of the more ugly displays of that animus, Senators Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) attempted to impose their own religious test on Brian Buescher, an Omaha, Nebraska, lawyer nominated by President Donald Trump to sit on the U.S. District Court in that state. Both women asserted that Buescher belonged to an organization that promoted “extremist” views.

The organization? The Knights of Columbus (KOC). Since its founding in 1882, the Knights of Columbus has become the world’s largest Catholic fraternal organization. In the last 10 years, its two million members have raised more than $1 billion and provided hundreds of millions of man-hours to charitable causes. Its charities include the Christian Refugee Relief Fund, Disaster Relief, Ultrasound Initiative, and Coats for Kids. KOC also partners with international charities that include the Special Olympics, the Global Wheelchair Mission, and Habitat for Humanity.

Nonetheless, Harris and Hirono were incensed that a Catholic organization opposes the Left’s foremost religious “sacrament,” abortion on demand. It also opposes same-sex marriage and expressed that opposition in 2008 by supporting California’s Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage. Proposition 8 passed by a margin of 52.3% to 47.7% in the same year Barack Obama was elected president. The same Barack Obama who also opposed same-sex marriage until he, along with Bill and Hillary Clinton, “evolved.”

Thus as far as Harris and Hirono are concerned, the Knights of Columbus is composed of anti-women homophobes whose members have no place in positions of power. Thus, Hirono inquired if Buescher would end his membership with the Knights to “avoid any appearance of bias” and “recuse from all cases in which the Knights of Columbus had taken a position.”

Buescher swatted Hirono down. “If confirmed, I will abide by the Code of Conduct of United States Judges and will not affiliate with any organization in violation of the Code,” he wrote, adding that the KOC “does not have the authority to take personal political positions on behalf of all of its approximately two million members.”

Harris was equally obnoxious, labeling the Knights an “all-male society” that “opposed a woman’s right to choose” and “marriage equality.” She asked Buescher if he knew “the Knights of Columbus opposed marriage equality when [he] joined the organization.”

Again, Buescher responded in stride. “I do not recall if I was aware whether the Knights of Columbus had taken a position … when I joined at the age of 18,” he wrote. Harris also cited a statement from Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson, who said that abortion constituted “the killing of the innocent on a massive scale” and asked Buescher if he agreed. “I did not draft this language,” he answered. “If confirmed, I would be bound by precedent of the United States Supreme Court and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals and would not be guided by statements made by others.”

When Buescher ran as a Republican candidate for Nebraska attorney general in 2014, he described himself as “avidly pro-life.” This was too much for Sen. Cory “Spartacus” Booker (D-NJ), who asked Buescher, “Why should a litigant in your courtroom expect to get a fair hearing from an impartial judge in a case involving abortion rights?” Buescher rightly noted that there’s a difference “between taking political positions as a candidate for elective office and serving as a federal judge.” He added, “I believe a judge’s role and obligation is to apply the law without regard to any personal beliefs regarding the law.”

The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board, which noted Democrat icon John F. Kennedy was also a KOC member, spelled out what today’s “new” Democrats are all about, writing, “If Mr. Buescher is unfit to serve as a federal judge because of his Knights membership, then so is every other Catholic American who doesn’t publicly repudiate the church’s moral teaching.”

Would that it were only the teachings of the Catholic Church. Anti-Semitic bigotry is an integral part of the party’s fabric as well. One of its newest members is Rashida Tlaib (D-MI). Fresh off her vow to “impeach the motherf —ke r” in reference to President Trump, she has accused her fellow lawmakers who support a bill that would permit local, state, and federal agencies to refrain from doing business with entities that support the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement as having “dual loyalty.” “They forgot what country they represent,” she tweeted.

Democrats have apparently forgotten the same thing. “As a leader of black Christians, I feel particularly strongly about the Knights of Columbus,” writes Eugene F. Rivers III, a Pentecostal minister and director of the Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies. “For more than a century they bravely defended minorities. … They stood against the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s, the height of its power, helping fund the Supreme Court case that defeated the Klan-backed ban on Catholic education in Oregon.”

That would be the same Ku Klu Klan institutionalized by the same Democrats who opposed the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution, banning slavery, guaranteeing due process and equal protection to former slaves, and granting black Americans the right to vote, respectively. The same Democrats who repeatedly elected former Klansman Robert Byrd — who led a filibuster against the 1964 Civil Rights Act — to the Senate.

“Sens. Harris and Hirono are playing a game: They are engaged in selective religious profiling and sexism,” asserts Catholic League President Bill Donohue.

It’s no game. An increasingly radical Democrat Party has made it clear that those who fail to adopt their bankrupt ideology — in its entirety and without reservation — will be targeted for destruction, by any and all means necessary.

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Cal Thomas: “Schumer and Pelosi challenged the president in a sleight-of-hand deal to re-open the part of government that is closed and then continue the debate about a wall. That reminds me of the ‘deal’ offered to President George H.W. Bush by then-Speaker Jim Wright (D-Texas). Wright said Congress would cut spending if Bush would OK a tax increase. Bush was blamed for the tax hike, never got the spending cuts and lost his re-election bid. In the end it is going to be a battle of images. One image is of people trying to cross the border illegally, throwing rocks, a few engaging in criminal activity; the other image is of 800,000 suffering federal employees going without paychecks. Which side will win is less important than what is best for America. If only more politicians cared about that higher goal.”

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “Knowledge is more a matter of learning than of the exercise of absolute judgment. Learning requires time, and in time the situation dealt with, as well as the learner, undergoes change.” —Frank H. Knight (1885-1972)

Observations: “Fact: If Trump had refused to sign a budget without border wall funding back in 2017, we’d have a wall right now. Or at least large portions of a wall. Republicans only try to do important things once they no longer have the power to do it. It’s been the same pattern for decades.” —Matt Walsh

Braying Jackass I: “Sadly, what President Trump is trying to do is create fear and hatred in our country. Instead of trying to bring us together as a people, he is trying to divide us up. And in the process, divert our attention from the real crises facing the working families of this nation. … The scientific community has made it very clear in telling us that climate change is real and is causing devastating harm to our country and the entire planet. … Mr. President, we don’t need to create artificial crises. We have enough real crises.” —Bernie Sanders

Braying Jackass II: “We are trying to undo the game plan that Ronald Reagan put forward in 1980. And that game plan on the surface was: capitalism is good, and just; markets are fair; unions are bad; personal responsibility determines everything. And what did that mean in practice? … It means you have to pay for tax cuts by cutting education. You have to cut health care. You have to allow corporations to pollute as much as they want and make as much as they want. It means you push really hard for guns. You push really hard against abortion. And you push really hard against non-white immigrants. There’s some other things you do. You try and make sure you suppress the vote in youth and minority communities because you figure they’re not gonna vote for you.” —Tom Steyer

And last… “The failure of Pelosi/Schumer to compromise [with] Trump on the wall is leading us to a bad place. Of course Trump will use ‘emergency’ powers to do it on his own. (Similar to what Obama did [with] DACA, via exec order.) The nation will further divide. Compromise is a far better answer.” —Ari Fleischer

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Join our editors and staff 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

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