Right Opinion

Eight Billion Reasons to Like Trump's Agenda

Tony Perkins · Feb. 9, 2018

Anyone wondering what Donald Trump would do to fill the pro-life promises of his campaign didn’t have to wait long to find out! In his first weekday on the job, the new White House started turning the page on eight deadly years of the Obama administration. After two terms of shipping American dollars to overseas groups like International Planned Parenthood, this president wasted no time pulling the plug, flipping the script on the pro-life Mexico City policy that Obama suspended.

In a policy dating back to every Republican administration since Ronald Reagan’s, Donald Trump continued the tradition of blocking even a single U.S. cent from going to foreign groups that perform or promote abortion in other countries. But the administration wasn’t done. To the cheers of pro-lifers, this White House took a giant leap forward from even Presidents Bush and Reagan. For the first time ever, the administration didn’t just bring $600 million in taxpayer funding under the authority of the pro-life rule, but $8.8 billion from the Departments of State, Health and Human Services, and Defense. That’s almost 15 times more money flowing through the abortion ban than President Bush’s policy!

Liberals were apoplectic. The U.S. is ending its global health outreach, they cried! People are going to die without America’s help. As usual, it was fake news. President Trump didn’t zero out international aid — he expanded it. For once, hurting, sick people don’t have to compete with the abortion lobby to get real care. Dollars that would have been spent propping up the culture of death are finally going to projects that improve lives — not take them. But don’t take our word for it. Take the State Department’s.

A year into the Left’s sky-is-falling predictions, this new approach to foreign aid is working. And well. In a report just released by Secretary Rex Tillerson’s agency, the Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance is having the desired effect. Not only is it helping to tear down the financial stronghold that groups like Planned Parenthood have on other nations, but it’s sending a message to the world that America recognizes that all human beings have inherent worth and dignity. If President Trump wanted to discourage international abortion, liberals say he has. A former member of USAID’s population fund lamented the “huge, huge chilling effect” the White House’s policy is having on abortion activism. “I would say, yeah, unfortunately, it does work.”

If there’s one thing both sides can support, it’s that the Trump administration has managed all of this without any disruption to our aid — one of the Left’s biggest (and unfounded) complaints. Liberals were sure that organizations all around the world would end their partnership with the U.S. government if they had to abide by the new pro-life rules. Hardly. Out of the 733 groups that provide foreign aid, only four refused to comply – including (not so surprisingly) abortion giants Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes International. So far, they’re the only ones more interested in destroying humans than helping the ones in need.

Meanwhile, if anyone’s opinion matters, isn’t it the people we’re trying to serve? After two terms of hitting other countries over the head with abortion propaganda, a lot of nations are relieved by the change. From the Philippians to Latin America, our neighbors have cheered the move. Carmel Nisha Pius Franco, director of a pro-life organization in India, pointed out:

Indian women need life, dignity, education and empowerment, not abortion. We have been exploited through decades-long population control propaganda which has resulted in at least 300 million abortions (16 million abortions being performed in India in just one year) and dangerous sub-replacement fertility rate. Americans do not want their hands in the blood of innocent children killed in India. Yes, we need to deal with development issues, but not by killing our children. Thanks to President Trump for setting things right…

The message from this White House is simple: Promoting health means protecting life. And years from now, who knows how many children will be alive to prove us right?

Originally published here.

Gayle Force Win: State Settles With Christian It Fired

Gayle Myrick served the state of North Carolina for five years. And she would have served more if she hadn’t been fired for being a Christian. Like a lot of magistrates in 2015, Gayle knew the minute the Supreme Court’s redefined marriage that her world would change forever. She decided that although she couldn’t, in good conscience, perform the same-sex ceremonies, she didn’t want to stand in the way of people getting lawfully married. So, her supervisor came up with a compromise: The office would change Gayle’s schedule so that she would never have to officiate a ceremony. It was the perfect solution.

Or so they thought. Someone higher in the chain of command refused to approve the change, arguing that Gayle’s religious beliefs shouldn’t affect her job. The next day, she was forced to leave. With the help of the Becket Fund, she filed a workplace discrimination complaint. And, after a long three years of fighting for a job she loved, won. This week, months after a court agreed that North Carolina was “obligated” to provide an accommodation, Union County finally settled, awarding Gayle $300,000, including more than $122,000 in back pay.

“I have always,” she said in a statement, “wanted to find a way to protect everyone’s dignity. The solution in my case would allow any couple to get lawfully married without facing rejection or delay, and magistrates with religious beliefs like me could step aside and still keep our jobs.” The problem isn’t that there isn’t a reasonable compromise. The problem is that when the courts trashed marriage, liberals tried to chuck the First Amendment along with it. “This case is about protecting the dignity of everyone in our diverse society,” Becket counsel Stephanie Barclay told The Daily Signal. “Faith and sexual orientation are deeply important to the identity of many people, and these two things don’t have to be at odds with each other.”

When county clerks, judges, and magistrates like Gayle took their oath of office, they understood that they’d be required to perform weddings. But it was before Obergefell. They didn’t take that oath with the understanding that they’d be required to marry same-sex couples. Three years later, it’s time to practice the coexistence liberals preached. “Our civil rights laws help us create a diverse society where people can live, work, and break bread together despite our differences,” Barclay explained. Let’s hope more courts recognize what this one already has: no one — not a baker, doctor, or public servant — should have to check their beliefs at the workplace door.

Watch Gayle’s story here.

Originally published here.

At Prayer Breakfast, Trump Doesn’t Waffle

Every president since Eisenhower has spoken at the National Prayer Breakfast. But not everyone has practiced the policies they preach. Barack Obama was famous for using the event to talk about the “inherent dignity of every person” only to ride back to an office that did more to promote abortion than any White House in history. Or to insist “we can’t leave our values at the door,” while he ordered Americans to do exactly that on marriage, health care, and faith. With Obama, what you heard wasn’t necessarily what you got.

In the year since Donald Trump has been in office, he hasn’t just talked a good game, he’s walked it. When he stepped up to the microphone Thursday morning to promote religious liberty, 12 months of accomplishments already spoke volumes. Executive orders, HHS rules, Justice Department briefs, and confirmations like Sam Brownback’s point to just how sincere the president is about what he says.

Thursday morning, he didn’t disappoint, using the opportunity to draw the country’s attention back to the importance of our First Freedom. “Our rights,” Trump said, “are not given to us by man. Our rights come from our Creator. No matter what, no Earthly force can take those rights away.” Then, in a nod to one of the biggest struggles in our society, he took time to highlight real tolerance and what it means to a nation like ours. “When Americans are able to live by their convictions, to speak openly of their faith, and to teach their children what is right, our families thrive, our communities flourish, and our nation can achieve anything at all.”

Then, broadening his scope, he hinted at the work cut out for Brownback, America’s new Ambassador at Large for Religious Freedom. “Together, as Americans, we are a tireless force for justice and for peace… We know that millions of people in Iran, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea and other countries suffer under repressive and brutal regimes. America stands with all people suffering oppression and religious persecution.”

It was another solid speech that reminded us all: words matter. But we can all be grateful that to this president, actions matter just as much.

For more on what the administration is doing to safeguard religious freedom, don’t miss my interview with Ambassador Brownback (below).

Originally published here.


This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.

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