China's Accomplice: Guess WHO
The world will see them as a number. To everyone else, they were high school baseball coaches, single moms, nurses, priests, songwriters, teachers, and grandparents. They were veterans of World War II and rabbis who survived the Holocaust. They beat breast cancer, lung cancer, poverty, and old age. But they could not beat this. Almost 13,000 Americans — everyone of them someone’s daughter or son. Every one of them with an ending written partially by one nation: China.
The dying started there, Michael Goodwin writes, but did not stop there. Every death, every unnecessary, premature casualty, has its roots in that nation. “China committed a crime against the world," Gordon Chang fumed, "And somehow it must pay.” But for so many of these inconsolable families — and there is one every 45 seconds now — no price would ever be high enough. As tens of thousands of people around the world mourn loved ones they can’t even bury, even Gordon admits, “There’s nothing China can ever do to make countries whole, because there’s no [possible] compensation for lives lost and yet to be lost.” Justice will never be fully done, but that doesn’t mean the world shouldn’t try.
The Chinese government’s lies, Gordon points out, going all the way back to December when it claimed the virus wasn’t contagious, “lulled countries into not taking the precautions that they would have otherwise adopted.” That sin, he explains was compounded, when the World Health Organization (WHO) did what no other sane entity would do: they took the communist party’s word for it. Despite decades of China’s misinformation campaigns and propaganda, the U.N. health arm threw its lot in with the regime — openly lobbying against other countries’ travel bans and restrictions (advice, fortunately, that our president ignored).
“The WHO gave them cover,” Gordon shook his head. And in the end, they were China’s accomplices in spreading this disease around the world. It’s an outrage, President Trump told reporters. “Literally, they called every shot wrong. They didn’t [even] want to say where the virus came from.” They’re “very China-centric,” he said, despite the fact that the U.S. contributions to the organization “dwarf” China’s. If America is the primary funder, Trump insisted, “we’re going to take a very strong look at it.”
As for China, there are plenty of things America can do to hold the country’s government accountable. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) is circulating a bill calling on the regime to cancel some American debt. Who knows, Gordon says, if Beijing would be that remorseful. But there are other options. “China holds more than a trillion dollars of U.S. treasuries. And with the stroke of a pen, President Trump could seize those.” Better yet — he could do it in coordination with the issuers of other major currencies — the Canadian dollar, British pound, the Euro, Swiss franc, and Japanese yen — "then the United States doesn’t take a propaganda hit from China… We should be working with our friends [to show] the Chinese people that the world condemns their regime.“
But what about retaliation? "They could move against U.S.-owned assets in China,” Gordon concedes, “which are about $270 billion dollars. But if they did that, they would be really cutting off a critical lifeline, because they need foreign business to jumpstart their economy, which is now at a standstill… [A]t the end of the day, they’d be hurting themselves far more than they’d be hurting the United States… They need foreign business. They need our markets. And so clearly, Beijing is not in a position to dictate terms to the United States. We, however, are in a position to tell them what to do.”
For once, we’re in a position of strength in China with a leader who understands how to use it. Let’s hope he does — not because it can ever bring anyone back. But because it can stop this from happening again.
Originally published here.
Killing Isn’t Essential, Judges Rule
In a world that’s only hearing about lives being lost, the Fifth Circuit Court is writing a different story about the ones being saved. Thanks to the courage of governors like Greg Abbott (R-Texas), there are literally hundreds of babies who are still alive in the womb today because leaders had enough sense to put a stop to abortions during the virus crisis. And Tuesday, to the relief of pro-lifers, judges refused to get in their way.
The order came down from Governor Abbott on a Saturday, March 22. Any procedure that isn’t “medically necessary” must be put on hold. The nation, he insisted, was in the middle of a health care crisis — and all of the state’s energy needed to be directed to treating COVID-19 patients. Not surprisingly, Planned Parenthood kicked and screamed, insisting this was all a conspiracy against the abortion industry. They were wrong. Putting a pause on the destruction of innocent children’s lives just happened to be one of the side benefits.
As Abbott and others have tried to explain, the reason for this is that there are a limited number of ICU beds. And right now, we want all of the states’ material, equipment, and medical personnel focused on the coronavirus. What they’re trying to stop is anything that would unintentionally or unnecessarily take up one of those beds. So they halted non-essential medical procedures. All of them. Now, abortion in many states — not all — is regulated just like an outpatient surgery center, so they’re treated the same when it comes to regulations. If those facilities are ordered not to operate, then abortion clinics shouldn’t be either.
But businesses like Planned Parenthood don’t see it that way. They took the state to court, demanding special treatment to keep ending pregnancies. Tuesday, a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit Court said no. “Individual rights,” Trump appointee Kyle Duncan wrote, “secured by the Constitution do not disappear during a public health crisis, but… rights could be reasonably restricted during those times.”
“When faced with a society-threatening epidemic, a state may implement emergency measures that curtail constitutional rights so long as the measures have at least some ‘real or substantial relation’ to the public health crisis and are not ‘beyond all question, a plain, palpable invasion of rights secured by the fundamental law,’" he insisted.
Acting Planned Parenthood CEO Alexis McGill Johnson couldn’t believe her ears. "This is unconscionable," she seethed. "Patients are already being forced to put their lives in harm’s way during a pandemic, and now will be forced to continue doing so to get the health care they need. Abortion is essential, it’s time-sensitive, and it cannot wait for a pandemic to pass.” Obviously, no liberal wants abortion to be labeled “non-essential,” since that cuts to the very heart of the far-Left argument. They’ve been insisting all along that “abortion is health care,” when in fact, as far as this court is concerned, it’s not essential. That could have serious ramifications in the way the procedure is viewed — not just in times of crisis, but in general.
In the meantime, Americans are getting a good look at just how important the president’s judicial appointments continue to be. To 261 babies — and counting — it’s more than important. It could mean their very lives.
Originally published here.
Sermon on the Mound: One Pastor’s Easter Pitch
There haven’t been any baseball players suiting up in Pensacola’s Blue Wahoos Stadium lately. But come Easter Sunday, there’ll be one team on the field: the leaders of Marcus Pointe Baptist Church. The stands will be empty, Pastor Gordon Godfrey says. But don’t be fooled. The entire city will be watching.
Usually when a church goes from 5,000 people at a service to zero, it’s nothing to celebrate. But for the congregation of Marcus Pointe, this year’s Sonrise service might just end up in the record books. Not only, Pastor Gordon said, did several local TV stations decide to broadcast the service, but a country music station is also airing the audio. That, he told me, combined with YouTube, Roku, and the church website could make it their biggest Easter yet. “We’re probably going to get way more coverage than ever before. I think it’ll be a huge crowd for this one.”
“Before,” he explained, “we were dependent on the number of people who could come to the stadium… about 5,000, and we filled it up. But now, with this opportunity that God has blessed us with, we’re going to be able to expand our boundaries and enlarge our tent. And we feel like… thousands of people all over the country will be able to see it this time.”
A lot of pastors would’ve been tempted to say, “Oh, we can’t do it, because we aren’t going to have a crowd. Nobody can gather. Let’s just cancel it.” Not this church. They decided to meet the challenge head-on and continue to minister. If this is what they have to work with — an empty stadium — then they decided to use it and pray that God blesses it. And so far, He has — above anything they could’ve hoped or imagined. Look at the doors that are opening for Pastor Gordon’s message to go out, all because he was faithful!
This Resurrection Sunday, take a page out of Marcus Pointe and be creative with what you have. For ideas that go beyond this weekend for outreach and service, check out FRC.org/church. Or, to tune in and see the Blue Wahoos “Sonrise” for yourself, visit Pastor Gordon's event website.
Originally published here.
This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.