LIBERTY TO BE UNCIVIL
By Harmony Grant
19 Sep 07
Last weekend one thousand Christians--Catholic, Pentecostal, and
others--joined for a silent march in Florida . Their t-shirts said
firmly, "My Jesus, My Freedom, My stand." They walked in
solidarity with a Christian chaplain who lost his job at a local
hospital for refusing to stop praying "in Jesus' name."
The firing of this chaplain got local Christians' attention, much
as the firing of Navy chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt (for the same "offense")
woke national evangelical leadership to the war on Christian prayer.
Maybe there is hope that American pastors and churchgoers will
realize their freedom is disappearing, before it is too late to save.
This remains an open question.
If the Senate passes Sen. Kennedy’s hate crimes amendment,
and Pres. Bush compromises on his promise to veto, the federal government
will be free to swoop into any state and prosecute "bias crimes," which
could be no more than racist epithets hurled during a football match
or, more likely, Christians' "hateful" evangelism or reproof
of those trapped in sin!
Hate crime laws do not criminalize hatred in general, just those
hatreds that are politically incorrect.
Freedom of speech has always been fragile and rare. Hate crimes
legislation will turn it into a memory, enabling massive censorship.
Columnist and talk show host Greg
Koukl writes that hate laws make “one wonder how an unfettered
debate on same-sex marriage will be able to proceed (“All those
opposed to same-sex marriage…you’re under arrest”).”
Certainly, if the ADL's hate bill had passed in 1998, as ADL was
certain it would, Mearsheimer and Walt's recent book, The
Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy, (regarded by ADL as "anti-Semitic")
could not exist. Alternative talk radio which now influences
millions, often criticizing Zionism, would be a mere dream.
Religious Freedom, 2007
The US State Department recently released its annual
report on international religious freedom. Commenting on the
report, Secretary Condoleezza Rice said “the ideology of
hatred and religious intolerance…fuels global terrorism.”
This is the dangerous irony: In the same breath that Rice applauds
freedom, she demonizes religious “hatred” as something
to outlaw. It doesn’t work like that. Hatred must not become
a crime. It is one of humanity’s fundamental emotions. The
government has no business messing with it anymore than with anger,
arrogance, or puppy love. In fact, the Bible says, "Ye
that love the Lord hate evil." (Ps. 97:10)
Fundamental aspects of religion—like proselytizing, warning
of divine judgment or praying “in Jesus’ name”—are
increasingly banned in the workplace, and hate laws make them crimes
in public! These are not crimes. For devout believers, they are duties
If unbelievers can’t handle words coming from a Christian’s
mouth, that’s their problem, not the government’s. The
government has no business moderating what’s polite or legislating
to protect certain people’s feelings. That road has only one
end, and it’s a police state.
Secretary Rice said, “As we reflect on the tragedy of [9/11],
we are reminded of the true importance of this report [on religious
freedom] and we reaffirm our commitment to help us shed light on
all countries where citizens are subjected to government censorship,
hate crimes, discrimination and violence for their thoughts and beliefs.”
Yes, the report is important. But it would be even more important
if it contained a section on the one nation that was left out: a
nation whose freedoms most concern us and are most imperiled— America
EMERGENCY UPDATE FROM REV. TED PIKE
The Senate, as of Wednesday, Sept. 19, has not yet considered Sen.
Kennedy's hate crimes amendment, S.A. 2067. It is vital
NOW that you call your Senator, tollfree 1-877-851-6437 or toll 1-202-225-3121,
and protest loudly. Public opposition to the hate bill has greatly
diminished since most new right organizations, putting their trust
in the President to veto this legislation, are not actively encouraging
their constituents to protest it to members of the Senate. It
is vital that a flood of calls right now energize Republican Senators
to rise and fight the hate bill with everything that is in them.
The reality is, if the hate bill is approved by the Senate, even
if it is vetoed by the President, it will have attained stature as
a bill passed by Congress -- a powerful recommendation to the
next President and Congress to pass it quickly. On the other
hand, defeat in Congress now will weaken the bill, making it much
more difficult for a new, probably extremely pro-hate bill administration
to pass it.
The failure of many new right leaders to encourage continued battle
is typical of their habitual mentality of accepting a "quick
fix" on the hate bill threat rather than thinking in terms of
long-term strategy and education. Even if defeated now, the
hate bill is going to come back again and again, promises the ADL,
until it passes.
It is up to you to make up the difference! Call NOW to your
members of the Senate. Also, come here
at truthtellers.org for the names of 37 Senators who might still
be persuaded to vote against the bill. If we remain vigilant
and never stop fighting the enemies of freedom, we can save freedom
for ourselves and our children!
Grant writes and edits for the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative
watch dog organization.
Let the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith teach you how they
have saddled 45 states with hate laws capable of persecuting Christians: http://www.adl.org/99hatecrime/intro.asp.
Learn how ADL took away free speech in Canada and wants to steal
it now in the U.S. Congress. Watch Rev. Ted Pike's Hate
Laws: Making Criminals of Christians at video.google.com. Purchase
this gripping documentary to show at church. Order online at www.truthtellers.org for
$24.90, DVD or VHS, by calling 503-853-3688, or at the address below.
National Prayer Network, P.O. Box 828, Clackamas,