Two States, One Goal: Freedom

LGBT activists have been fond of saying that same-sex marriage would never affect you. Well, now, it’s not only affecting you — it’s affecting needy kids.

Across the country, Christian charities and adoption services have been bracing themselves against wave after wave of attack from liberals, desperate to kick them out of the child welfare industry. As far as these extremists are concerned, no organization — including an explicitly religious one — should be allowed to operate if they hold a biblical view of marriage. In places like Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Massachusetts, their crusade has gone so far as to close down one of the largest child placement services in the area — Catholic Charities — because it refused to compromise its core beliefs.

Fortunately, in some states, the bullying is prompting a counter-attack from common sense lawmakers, who think it’s well within a charity’s right to decide which homes are the best and most loving options for children. In Oklahoma, the state legislature followed in the suit of at least five other states, sending a measure to Gov. Mary Fallin’s (R) desk that would give religious groups the freedom to exercise their faith in their placement policies. Democrats were so irate during the debate that the presiding officer threatened to have one member removed.

In nearby Kansas, legislators acted hours later, passing their version of the “Child Welfare Inclusion Act” 63-58 in the House and 24-15 in the Senate early this morning. “This is a matter of activist groups who don’t like certain religious beliefs and they want to use the power of the government to crush people that operate according to those religious beliefs,” said Michael Schuttloffel, the director of the Kansas Catholic Conference. With, as the AP points out, an already overloaded foster care system, the state can’t afford to lose a single provider – let alone one of Kansas’s biggest.

Governor Jeff Coyler (R) must have agreed, promising to make the bill law. “Catholic Charities and other adoption agencies are key to the fabric of our communities. I look forward to signing this bill because it increases the opportunities for needy children to find loving homes.” Hopefully, his counterpart in Oklahoma will follow suit, recognizing that liberal activists are more concerned with pushing their intolerant agenda than they are with finding children good homes.

Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Saudis Draw Line in the Sand for Christians

Amazon a Prime Suspect in Charity War

Boy Scouts Nix the Word ‘Boy,’ Showing They No Longer Believe in Masculinity

It seems the Boy Scouts of America would prefer not to exist.

On Wednesday, the Boy Scouts announced that their signature program known simply as the “Boy Scouts”—which serves ages 10 to 17—will no longer bear the word “boy.” Beginning in February, it will be known as Scouts BSA.

This change comes only months after the Boy Scouts announced girls would be allowed into the program. Chief Scout Executive Mike Surbaugh said they wanted to choose a name that “evokes the past but also conveys the inclusive nature of the program going forward.”

This name change, and the “inclusive” policy change that preceded it, indicates a fundamental shift away from the mindset that first gave rise to the Boy Scouts in the early 20th century. One can’t shake the impression that if the Boy Scouts were starting from scratch, they’d ditch even the acronym “BSA” and go completely gender-neutral.

It’s worth probing that fundamental shift in mindset.

The very existence of Boy Scouts, as separate from Girl Scouts, suggests a belief that boys and girls are fundamentally different, and that some good could be achieved by separating them for certain purposes. Otherwise, we would have simply had the “Scouts.”

The Boy Scouts emerged out of a culture that valued boyhood and girlhood as distinct realities, rooted in maleness and femaleness. Each gender had its own unique set of virtues that our culture sought to cultivate in the next generation.

Those virtues are captured in the Boy Scouts’ 1916 congressional charter, which read:

The purpose of this corporation shall be to promote, through organization and cooperation with other agencies, the ability of boys to do things for themselves and others, to train them in Scoutcraft, and to teach them patriotism, courage, self-reliance, and kindred virtues, using the methods which are now in common use by Boy Scouts.

Courage. Self-reliance. Virtues accessible to all, no doubt, yet which were considered integral to the masculine ideal.

The Girl Scouts came into being just two years after the Boy Scouts. Their motto was even more explicitly tailored to a single gender: to train girls “first as good women, then as good citizens, wives, and mothers.”

If the founders of these organizations believed men and women are essentially the same, and that the same ends could be achieved by mixing Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts together, then again, we would simply have inherited the “Scouts of America.”

But instead, two years after the Boy Scouts were founded, Juliette Gordon Low founded the organization that became the Girl Scouts. Though she took inspiration from Sir Robert Baden-Powell, who founded the Boy Scouts, she wanted to start a different organization.

So the legacy we have is two separate institutions premised on the idea that masculine and feminine identities actually matter—that they are unique, special, each worthy of celebration in their own right, and worth cultivating in the next generation.

Yet today, the Boy Scouts organization is perpetually at war with itself—at war with the very premise of its own existence.

The Boy Scouts rightly recognize that male and female are inherently equal. But equal doesn’t mean the same. The Boy Scouts seem to have conflated the two. If boys and girls are essentially the same, what’s to be gained from keeping them separate? That would be arbitrary and perhaps even wrong.

But if boys and girls are in fact different, and generally oriented toward their own unique masculine and feminine virtues, then it makes perfect sense to nurture them in separated settings—at least for discrete activities like scouting.

Yet the Boy Scouts have jettisoned that thinking in favor of radical inclusion. They may have achieved greater inclusivity, but at what cost? Their very definition is exclusive, just as so many other groups are exclusive (think of AARP, the NAACP, or the National Organization for Women). The Boy Scouts have sacrificed their identity to the left’s absolutist vision of inclusion.

That vision will be the death of any group that seeks to define itself by any unique trait.

Definitions are by necessity exclusionary, and any group that defines itself as A and not B will face pressure from the left to embrace B as well.

Except then, there’s no point to having a group at all. We’ll all just be absorbed into the left’s all-consuming impulse to “include” everyone. The left’s crusade for inclusion will redefine and un-define every group it touches.

Ironically, such radical inclusion is the death of any real diversity, because without real difference, there can be no diversity.


Portrait of Daniel Davis

Daniel Davis is the commentary editor of The Daily Signal and co-host of The Daily Signal podcastSend an email to Daniel. Twitter: .

We Asked 16 Senators Advocating More Government-Run Health Care About Alfie Evans. None of Them Responded.

Sixteen liberal lawmakers who support a “Medicare for all” plan declined to respond to The Daily Signal on how they anticipate cases such as that of British toddler Alfie Evans should be handled in the United States.

Alfie died Saturday morning at Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool, England, fivedays after the hospital followed government guidelines and took him off life support against the will of his parents.

The Daily Signal requested comment from Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and 15 cosponsors of his legislation before the Senate Finance Committee that would make the Medicare program available to all Americans and increase the government’s influence in health care decisions.

Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist who sought the Democratic nomination for president in 2016, caucuses with the Democrats. His 15 co-sponsors are all Democrats.

The liberal Left continue to push their radical agenda against American values. The good news is there is a solution. Find out more >>

The Daily Signal emailed the Senate offices of Sanders and co-sponsors Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Mazie Hirono of Hawaii, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Edward Markey of Massachusetts, Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Brian Schatz of Hawaii, Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, Tom Udall of New Mexico, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.

In emails sent to the 16 senators Monday and Tuesday, The Daily Signal noted that they have advocated government-run health care and asked what they thought of the Alfie Evans case and how a similar case should be handled in the United States.

None had responded as of publication deadline Tuesday evening.

Bob Moffit, a senior health care analyst for The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal that England’s universal health care system is to blame for Alfie’s death.

“In the British system, the government arrogated to itself the final say over the child’s fate, not his loving  parents, and in the process coldly repudiating the charitable provision of potential medical alternatives,” Moffit said in a written statement, adding:

The British courts, of course, sided with the British government and its National Health Service personnel. Americans must be on guard to make sure that government officials are never given such arbitrary power, power over life and death, denying the right of patients to go outside of the system and secure alternative sources of care or better medical treatment.

Alfie, who was almost 2, had a degenerative neurological condition that doctors had not conclusively diagnosed, The Sun reported.

His doctors acted under the guidelines of the National Health Service, England’s government-sponsored universal health care system. According to The Sun, the courts deemed that Alfie “could not be saved” and that it would be “unkind” and “futile” to pursue treatment.

Alder Hey Children’s Hospital ended Alfie’s treatment and removed him from a ventilator.

His parents, Kate James and Thomas Evans, had taken their legal fight to keep him on life support to the British Court of Appeal, the British Supreme Court, and the European Court of Human Rights.

On April 20, Britain’s High Court denied Alfie’s parents’ final appeal that they be allowed to continue to care for Alfie, ordering the hospital to remove his life support on April 23.

Portrait of Rachel del Guidice

Rachel del Guidice

Rachel del Guidice is a reporter for The Daily Signal. She is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, Forge Leadership Network, and The Heritage Foundation’s Young Leaders Program. Send an email to Rachel. Twitter: @LRacheldG.

Dear Readers:

With the recent conservative victories related to tax cuts, the Supreme Court, and other major issues, it is easy to become complacent.

However, the liberal Left is not backing down. They are rallying supporters to advance their agenda, moving this nation further from the vision of our founding fathers.

If we are to continue to bring this nation back to our founding principles of limited government and fiscal conservatism, we need to come together as a group of likeminded conservatives.

This is the mission of The Heritage Foundation. We want to continue to develop and present conservative solutions to the nation’s toughest problems. And we cannot do this alone.

We are looking for a select few conservatives to become a Heritage Foundation member. With your membership, you’ll qualify for all associated benefits and you’ll help keep our nation great for future generations.


EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of British toddler Alfie Evans’ parents, Kate James and Thomas Evans. (Photo: Philip Toscano/Zuma Press/Newscom)

Facebook ‘enabling illegal activities’ including the sale of ‘highly addictive’ illegal drugs

Pathfinders Recovery Center in an article titled “Mark Zuckerberg Faces Questions About Opioid Sales on Social Media” reported the following:

Mark Zuckerberg, the owner of the social networking giant, Facebook, appeared in front of Congress on April, 11. He faced questions about the sale of illegal opioids on both Facebook and Instagram. Republican Rep. David McKinney from West Virginia, was especially vocal when questioning Zuckerberg about why Facebook has not been more proactive about taking down posts from opioid dealers.

McKinney told Zuckerberg,

“Your platform is still being used to circumvent the law and allow people to buy highly addictive drugs without a prescription…. Facebook is actually enabling an illegal activity…”

Drugs On the Internet

The problem of illegal drug sales through the internet is not a new one. In 2011 the search engine giant, Google, paid $500 million to the United States Department of Justice for allowing prescription drug ads from Canadian online pharmacies to internet users in the United States. The ads were stopped in 2009 when Google executives became aware of the U.S. Attorney’s investigation into the matter.

Opioid sellers still find creative ways to post about drug sales on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Critics like McKinney have accused the social media sites of only reacting to the posts by taking them down, not being proactive in finding ways to stop the illegal sales, to begin with. Critics believe that opioid addictions are encouraged by these posts. Removing questionable content from social media platforms has been relatively hit or miss in the past. Facebook executives have been asked to no longer allow mentions of Oxycontin and other drug-related terms from Facebook or Instagram, a photo sharing social media platform owned by Facebook.

Zuckerberg answered the accusations by stating that his company needs to create more artificial intelligence to police the social media platforms. Right now the company has security and content reviewers who remove questionable posts when they are flagged by users. Zuckerberg continued by saying there will be 20,000 workers in those positions by the end of 2018. However, he admits that even that number of people can not police every posting on Facebook and Instagram. He went on to state, “…we need…more A.I. tools that can proactively find that content.” They have to A.I. capability to remove almost one hundred percent of ISIS content before it is even available to be viewed, but the technology is lacking when it comes to identifying illegal drug sale posts. Zuckerberg could not comment on a timeline for these tools to be available to help remove drug-related posts.

Posts that Rep. McKinley himself flagged have since been removed. He still believes however that the “internal controls” of these sites are lacking and these posts should have been removed long ago. McKinley states that he has been waiting months to talk to Facebook about the issue.

FDA Commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, has been outspoken about opioid sales on platforms like Facebook and Instagram as well. He feels they are not taking the necessary steps to identify and take down these posts. Zuckerberg claimed not to be aware of the exact nature of Gottlieb’s comments but said he would have someone at any meeting held that included tech representatives.

Getting Help in Addiction

Overdose deaths from prescription pill addiction doubled from 21,089 deaths in 2010 to 42,249 deaths in 2016. There is help available for people who are struggling with opioid addictions. This help comes in the form of rehabilitation.

Pathfinders Recovery Centers in Arizona and Colorado provide prescription drug addiction treatment can help people overcome their potentially deadly habit.

KILLER CLERICS: Absolutely no excuse — period.

As you have probably heard by now, little Alfie Evans died on Saturday in the early morning hours at Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool, England. The case of the now-killed, little Alfie Evans has so much evil swirling around it that volumes could be written, from the British law usurping the natural-law rights of his parents, to the callousness of the hospital administrators in refusing to cooperate with other hospitals willing to take over the case, to the British courts in cold-heartedly just declaring flat-out that “There is also no reason for further delay.”

It would be hard to imagine the Nazi death-camp doctors speaking in more gruesome terms. There were plenty of reasons to not put the nearly two year old to death. His parents said “no.” A Roman hospital said “no.” Other doctors around the world said “no.” Parents in similar situations around the world said “no.” Even the pope said “no” — do not kill him.

But perhaps most disturbing in all this is the response of the numerous bishops and clerics in England and Rome. “Kill him” essentially sums up their opinion. The archbishop of Liverpool, Malcolm Patrick McMahon, not only publicly supported the hospital’s death sentence but couldn’t even get the most basic facts right in his statement when he said the parents of Alfie weren’t Catholic.

The father, Tom Evans, is a baptized Catholic, as was little Alfie — a shameful and revealing gross error. But McMahon was only following the lead of Abp. Vincenzo Paglia in Rome, ironically the head of the Pontifical Academy for Life, who voiced public support for the death of little Alfie. He was even confronted in the airport in Italy by a faithful laywoman who said he should be ashamed of his statement. He brushed her aside and ordered an aide to handle her. Paglia was probably in a rush to get back to the homoerotic paintings featuring himself that he commissioned for his cathedral church. Once Pope Francis came out publicly supporting Alfie and pleading for his life, the homoerotic-painting-loving archbishop suddenly reversed course and supported Alfie.

But most troubling perhaps of all is the support given to the death merchants and deniers of parental natural law rights by the bishops of England and Wales who piled on little Alfie, approving of his killing by the hospital, doubling down on the Paglia-McMahon stance and in public defiance of the pope. These men are among the most vocal, along with many of their ilk, when calling for mercy. But there were no calls for mercy for little Alfie, even though he did not have a fatal disease, and in fact, the cause of his condition was largely unknown.

It’s astounding when you consider that the establishment of Great Britain was cheering and supporting the killing of one child on one side of England when cheering and supporting the life of another child born on practically the same day Alfie was killed — the newborn prince of William and Kate — Louis. That little royal better hope he doesn’t develop some serious medical condition and then turn to the nation’s Catholic bishops for support in saving his life.

Almost 500 years ago, the Catholic bishops of England supported the spiritual death of England in turning the country over to the wishes of an adulterous, murderous king. Five-hundred years later, it appears they are just as happy to continue in the losing streak in turning over to the Establishment the physical lives of sick children — even in defiance of a plea by the pope.

Parents, not governments, have the natural-law right from Almighty God to make these decisions for their children, not the state and certainly not errant-misguided-duplicitous-disobedient-killer clerics. Little Alfie Evans — dead — just two weeks before his second birthday. Please stay tuned for today’s Download where the panel will discuss all this in much greater detail.

VIDEO: The Safest Space on the campus of Yale University

In 2015 Yale University students voiced their concern about the lack of a “Safe Space” on campus. The incident took place because of Halloween costumes worn by some students were considered “culturally insensitive.” The students tensions boiled over in the confrontation below, in which a crowd of students encircled Nicholas Christakis the Master of Silliman, one of Yale’s residential houses.

This confrontation came to mind as more and more students are demanding and more and more colleges and universities are providing “Safe Spaces” for their students. The Yale confrontation in 2015 is also important because it was sparked by costumes worn on Halloween. Halloween or All Hallows Evening is a Christian celebration that comes before “All Hallows Day” a celebration of all Christian saints.

According to Wikipedia:

Halloween or Hallowe’en (a contraction of All Hallows‘ Evening), also known as Allhalloween, All Hallows‘ Eve, or All Saints’ Eve, is a celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows‘ Day.

All Hallows Day is:

All Saints’ Day is a celebration of all Christian saints, particularly those who have no special feast days of their own, in many Roman Catholic, Anglican and Protestant churches. In many western churches it is annually held November 1 and in many eastern churches it is celebrated on the first Sunday after Pentecost.

So what does All Hallows’ Day have to do with Safe Spaces?

Yale has had a “safe space” since 1757. This safe space is named The University Church of Yale. According to the University Church of Yale’s website:

The University Church in Yale is the oldest university congregation in America, starting at Yale in 1757.  Today, we are a student-focused church welcoming Christian students of all backgrounds, as well as staff, faculty and New Haven neighbors.   Our church life is centered around Sunday worship in Yale’s historic Battell Chapel, which features beautiful music, challenging and thoughtful preaching, and the prayer of a diverse, faithful community.   We share our love of God with our neighbors through a commitment to service and advocacy for the hungry and homeless in New Haven.  And we have lots of fun together with retreats, study groups, meals, concerts, lectures and other events.  Whether you’re a lifelong Christian or exploring church for the first time, you are welcome here.

A church is truly a safe space. Luke 6:31 commands each and every person to:

Treat others the same way you want them to treat you.

What is safer? To be in a room with like minded people or to be in a church with a community of people who want to treat you as they want to be treated?

Most university and college campuses have churches or chapels available to students and faculty. Here is a link to a list of the thirty most beautiful college cathedrals and churches.

Perhaps the safest space is where your faith is?

As Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, “All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.”

RELATED ARTICLE: Colleges: Anti-Diversity and Pro-Exclusion

Who hired the potty mouth woman for the White House press dinner? Answer: Another woman!

It is always interesting to note how visceral hate exposes itself in the most unusual places. The most recent was at the White House Corespondents Association dinner held in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, April 28, 2018. The dinner is put on by the White House Corespondents Association (WHCA). According to the WHCA website:

We share the belief, held by our country’s Founders and enshrined in the First Amendment, that an independent news media is vital to the health of the republic.

The White House Correspondents’ Association exists to promote excellence in journalism as well as journalism education, and to ensure robust news coverage of the president and the presidency.

According to the WHCA, “White House Correspondent’s Association holds an annual dinner to raise money for WHCA scholarships and honor the professional recipients of the WHCA’s journalism awards.”

The news after the dinner was not about how the WHCA’s support for the First Amendment. The First Amendment reads:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Margaret Talev

So who hired a woman to use foul language to attack another woman, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who is the Press Secretary to the President of the United States?

What make this doubly egregious is that the President of the WHCA is a woman. Here name is Margaret Talev. Talev is a political corespondent for Bloomberg. After the dinner Talev posted the following on the WHCA Twitter account:

Dismay indeed!

Is Profanity Protected Speech?

 The Newseum Institute’s  wrote the following in a column titled “Remember Profanity Isn’t Always Protected Speech“:

The First Amendment often protects the profane word or phrase — but not always.

The First Amendment protects a great deal of offensive, obnoxious and repugnant speech. As Justice John Marshall Harlan wrote 40 years ago in Cohen v. California, “one man’s vulgarity is another’s lyric.” In that decision, the Court ruled that an individual had a First Amendment right to wear a jacket bearing the words “Fuck the Draft.”

So a general law that prohibits all profanity will run into serious First Amendment hurdles, as recognized this week by the suburban Chicago city of Park Ridge, Ill. Perhaps in the spirit of the Cohen ruling, the city rid its books of a law that made it illegal to use profanity on streets, alleys and other public places. The police chief of the suburb told the Associated Press that free-speech concerns formed part of the reason for erasing the law.

Park Ridge’s move has much to commend it. But people shouldn’t mistakenly believe that the First Amendment always protects profanity. It doesn’t.

Certain categories of speech are not entitled to First Amendment protection, including fighting words, true threats and incitement to imminent lawless action. If a person engages in profane fighting words or utters a true threat with profanity, those words may not be protected speech.

Likewise, a speaker who uses profanity to stir up a crowd to immediate lawless action (like a riot) may have crossed the line from protected speech into unprotected incitement.

Furthermore, though you may have a right to curse on the street, don’t assume you have a right to curse at your public employer or at your public school. Context — as well as content — is important in First Amendment law. The government has greater power to regulate speech when it acts as employer or educator than it does when it acts as sovereign.

The monologue at the WHCA dinner was profanity writ large. Was the intent “to stir up the crowed to immediate lawless action?”

Was the monologue “unprotected incitement?” Was the attack against the Press Secretary “profane fighting words?”

Profanity is the most common form of bullying.

The Bible says this about profanity:

Colossians 3:8

But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.

Ephesians 4:29

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Matthew 12:36-37

I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

We report you decide.


Who Was Worse—Michelle Wolf or Her Audience?

There is nothing funny about abortion

Alfie Versus the State

David Warren writes about the attention being given to the fate of toddler Alfie Evans. To oppose his death is to be an enemy of the state.

As I write, the fate of the baby Alfie Evans in England is (or was) open. It is “breaking news,” and there are two things to know about that. First, all media reports are suspect, including those the reader wishes to be true. Even with goodwill, which is often absent, journalists will confuse significant details.

Second, it is an incomplete story. Alfie might die before this is published; or he might still be alive in September. My earnest prayers are that he will still be defiantly alive; but as even the doctors in Liverpool’s Alden Hay hospital do not understand his “disease,” who can guess?

The story “on the ground” seems straightforward. A child appears to be dying in a British hospital. British courts have ruled that he must be “allowed” to die – by disconnecting him from elementary life support systems, despite his parents’ desperate efforts to save him. An Italian aircraft is standing by, ready to fly the child to Italy, and doctors at Bambino Gesu in Rome are prepared to receive him. The Vatican has offered to cover the costs. But a British judge ruled that this must NOT be allowed, and his superiors up to the European court quickly signed off on it.

Alfie has an army

It is worth noting that the High Court Justice, Anthony Hayden, is a prominent member of the Bar Lesbian and Gay Group (“BLAGG”), who co-wrote a manual on Children and Same-Sex Families; that the Alfie case was presented by the pro-life and pro-family Christian Legal Centre – two radically opposed positions, Culture of Death versus Culture of Life, on almost all fronts. What were CLC’s chances?

On Tuesday, the child was “unplugged.” But as I write he is still breathing, and his father reports that he is responding well to his mother’s cuddling.

The child was “diagnosed” with an unknown brain degenerative condition when he fell into a coma many months ago. The monitors show extensive brain damage – I’m assuming this is correctly reported – and the assumption of a cause has been a recurring medical tradition since at least the days of Hippocrates. It does not follow that the cause is understood, and removing the little patient from ventilator, hydration, and nutrition will not advance the study.

Both the child’s father and the child’s doctors misuse that term, diagnosis, from ignorance. But as I think Hippocrates would agree, ignorance is common and knowledge is rare. Still, it is worth pointing out that a non-diagnosis cannot be a “misdiagnosis.” The two sides lead each other into error.

In our brave new age of “euthanasia,” we kill first and ask questions later. In the godless outlook, the only criteria for moral decisions can be physical or psychological pain. “Quality of life” indicates its absence. Its presence can now be a death sentence. Humans can be sustained or put down along veterinary guidelines.

As I and others long ago argued, the legalization of abortion would lead inevitably to this. We said that if people including their own mothers can pick and choose, which unborn baby is “wanted” (and thus the moral equivalent of a human being) and which “unwanted” (and thus the moral equivalent of a sick cat), the hell gates were open. Now look at what is coming through.

Afie’s dad and Pope Francis

While all of the “life issues” have emotional implications, fact remains fact. Without sharp, absolute criteria on matters of life and death, we are all for the boilers. Thinking is replaced by feeling on all sides. Our (dare I say, God-given) instincts are normally on the side of survival, but when the principle of the intrinsic worth of a human life has been abrogated – every human life, not some – anything is possible.

Alfie has (impressive) young parents who are working-class Catholic, and a legion of supporters who are unambiguously pro-life. All such are accused by the authorities of “emotionalism.” I’m sure they are guilty. The “optics” of the case are very bad for the British medical and legal establishment, which goes some way to explain why the story is downplayed in liberal media such as the BBC. And “up-played” in certain right-wing tabloids.

There are also emotions on the other side. Contempt for believing Christians is among them; and more generally, for those who insist that human life is sacred. The smugness in the language many journalists use to describe them may not be obvious to themselves. It is extremely obvious to their targets.

But here again, the “abortion principle” comes into play. Those on the losing side of the fight to preserve our civilization are not deemed to have the right to their opinions. They are “unpersons” to everyone from government bureaucrats to fashionable lawyers to media talking heads.

Kate James’ and Tom Evans’ appeal

This is why, to give an obvious instance, President Trump is deemed to be illegitimate: because he was elected by people in that “flyover” country whose votes shouldn’t count; people who, in effect, “should have been aborted.” The same is at large in every Western country; and the response of the unpersoned to their unpersonators was predictable.

Meanwhile the police have formed a cordon outside Alden Hay, to control the “unwashed” opponents to what amounts to a state-ordered killing.

And a certain Chief Inspector Chris Gibson has warned that social media posts from their like are being monitored and, “Any offences, including malicious communications and threatening behaviour, will be investigated and, where necessary, will be acted upon.”

In other words, Big Brother is watching, careful what you say.

This was also predictable. When policies are adopted that are contra naturam, enforcement is required. Defenders of the ancient order must be silenced, for fear they may organize themselves.

To what I will call the “post-abortion liberal,” opposition is no longer a question of free speech. It is an act of rebellion against their Dictatorship of Relativism.

Alfie must die, and those who think otherwise are sworn enemies of the State.

David Warren

David Warren

David Warren is a former editor of the Idler magazine and columnist in Canadian newspapers. He has extensive experience in the Near and Far East. His blog, Essays in Idleness, is now to be found at:

EDITORS NOTE: © 2018 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.orgThe Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

Thomas More Law Center Will Provide Legal Assistance To Students On National Pro-Life T-Shirt Day

ANN ARBOR, MI – The Thomas More Law Center (“TMLC”), a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is again collaborating with American Life League’s annual National Pro-Life T-Shirt Day which will take place this Friday, April 20, 2018. TMLC lawyers will defend, without charge, the right for students to wear their pro-life t-shirts. Students requiring legal assistance from TMLC should contact Margaret at Life Defenders via email at or by phone at 571-398-9904.

American Life League has spearheaded National Pro-Life T-Shirt Day (“NPLTD”) for over two decades. The goal of NPLTD is to empower young people to witness to the dignity of all human beings by wearing their favorite t-shirt with a pro-life message. Students are encouraged to post pictures on social media wearing their t-shirts and use the hashtag #NPLTD18.

This year’s featured t-shirt, pictured above, was designed by two teenage brothers, who created the shirt to resemble a nutrition label found on most packaged food products. The purpose of the design is to show the value of the preborn, the elderly and people of all abilities as being worthy of the right to life. The design features the “ingredients” as virtues needed to be pro-life: courage, compassion, charity, hope, understanding, and perseverance.

TMLC proudly stands with American Life League to support the students choosing to participate in the National Pro-Life T-Shirt Day.

Californians Not So Keen on Marijuana Industry

The Southern California News Group and other Digital First newspapers have compiled a database tracking citizens’ acceptance of the marijuana industry voted into existence by Proposition 64 in 2016 and implemented as of January 1, 2018. Prop 64 made it legal to possess up to an ounce of marijuana and to grow it at home, but the law also gives California cities and counties the right to restrict or ban pot businesses within their boundaries.

So far, fewer than one-third of the state’s 482 cities and only 18 of its counties allow any kind of marijuana business to operate within their borders.

The database scores each jurisdiction according to how lenient they are in allowing pot commerce. To get above 96 points, jurisdictions must allow licenses for medical and recreational marijuana sales, cultivation, manufacturing, distribution, and testing. To get 100 points they must also allow marijuana lounges or festivals, meaning use in public, which nearly all recreational states ban.

More than five dozen cities score zero on the scale, banning all pot businesses, not allowing residents to grow outdoors for personal use, and requiring residents to obtain a permit to grow indoors for personal use.

The database can be accessed from this article. Read “Database of Marijuana Rules from Every City and County in California Shows Slow Acceptance of Prop. 64” here.

RELATED ARTICLE: Opioids Kill: Here’s How an Overdose Shuts Down Your Body – Science News

Planned Parenthood Gets the Ax in Nebraska Budget!

There might not be a more unpopular idea in Nebraska than sending taxpayer dollars to Planned Parenthood. At last check, only 19 percent of voters thought the state should sign another check to America’s biggest abortion business. And late last week, legislators made it clear they were listening.

For the first time since Congress gave back control over their Title X “family planning” dollars to states, Nebraska used it — ending its $2 million partnership with Planned Parenthood in its new budget. For the next two years, taxpayers can relax, knowing that local dollars aren’t going to a group that thinks abortion is the best form of birth control.

Governor Pete Ricketts (R), who had fought for the budget to “reflect our values,” inked his name to the bill late last week. To the cheers of Nebraskans, he announced, “The budget adjustments I have signed help to further control state spending. Additionally, these bills contain important new budget language, which ensures that Title X taxpayer dollars do not fund abortion services, including abortion referrals, at any clinic in Nebraska.”

But even with voters’ support, this was no easy task. As Nebraska Radio Network points out, Governor Ricketts really had to stick his neck out to change the budget.

Controversy engulfed the budget when Ricketts inserted language restricting the use of federal family planning funds. The language directs the money only to clinics which provide family planning services without performing abortions, effectively carving Planned Parenthood out of the budget. Supporters had to overcome a filibuster which derailed approval of the budget twice. It passed only when a handful of legislators negotiated a compromise, which changed the language, but left the restrictions in place.

Fortunately for the state, Governor Ricketts knows that life is worth fighting for. And, like us, he’s grateful for the president’s leadership on the issue. If it weren’t for Trump and the GOP leaders in Congress, Obama’s rules would still be in place — making it almost impossible for states to defund Planned Parenthood. Let’s hope that Ricketts’s courage inspires other governors to do the same!

Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC Action senior writers.


To Whom It May Confirm: Groups Appeal to Senate on Pompeo

Haley’s Comment: Ambassador Takes China to Task

FRC in the Spotlight…

There Is No Solid Evidence of Genetic Basis for Trans Identity

A new study into the genes of those who identify as transgender has picked up decent amount of media attention.

The Times in the United Kingdom hailed what it called a genetic “discovery” with the headline “Science pinpoints DNA behind gender identity.” LGBTQ Nation ran a more inconclusive headline: “Scientists discover DNA that could be responsible for gender identity.”

The Times should have paid more attention to Dr. John Theisen, the lead researcher, who said the genes they identified pointed to a “possibility, not a fact.” He cautioned that his research, still in its early stages, used only a small sample size (30 people) and has yet to be peer reviewed—both reasons for exercising major caution when interpreting the results.

In fact, closer examination of the abstract from the research paper reveals that finding a genetic basis for transgender identity wasn’t even the intended purpose of the study. The purpose was much narrower in scope: to identify genes that might point to a potential biological basis so future research could know where to focus its efforts.

In the conclusion, the researchers say, “We identified genetic variants in 20 genes that may play a role in transgender identity.” Words are important, and the word “may” indicates a possibility, not a fact.

Another much larger study is being conducted to explore whether transgender identity has any biological basis. That study, which includes 10,000 participants, is looking to the genome—a person’s complete set of DNA—for clues about whether transgender identity has a biological basis. The findings are years away, though, and completion of the project depends on securing more funding.

In the meantime, no absolute conclusions can be made about a genetic basis for transgender identity.

Some of the difficulty in fashioning a study to find a biological link to transgender identities arises from the definition of the term “transgender.” Medically speaking, a transgender person is defined as someone who has been diagnosed with gender dysphoria, a condition where a person experiences discomfort or distress arising from a mismatch between their biological sex and internal sense of gender identity.

The problem is that transgender identity is based solely on subjective criteria. There is no objective, robust physical test to prove whether “transgender persons” exist beyond a person strongly insisting that he or she is a transgender person.

It’s difficult to even discern who truly has gender dysphoria. Those who self-identify as “transgender” represent a challenging cross-section of individuals. They may be simple cross-dressers, transvestites, or drag queens, yet they may or may not have gender dysphoria.

Many transgender persons are suffering emotionally, psychologically, or psychiatrically, sometimes due to early childhood trauma or co-existing mental disorders. Studies have shown that nearly 70 percent of people diagnosed with gender dysphoria also suffer from a wide variety of co-existing disorders that often go undiagnosed and untreated.

With no medical proof to help diagnose gender dysphoria, and with most who identify as transgender having other issues that need treatment, one could argue that too many people are being gathered under the blanket term “transgender” and being inappropriately directed toward cross-gender hormone therapies and surgeries.

The original advocates of gender change started a social experiment in the 1960s that continues today. Alfred Kinsey, Dr. Harry Benjamin, and Dr. John Money fell short in providing proof that cross-gender hormone therapies and surgeries provide long-term, effective results for gender disorders. The 50 years of reported suicides and a suicide attempt rate of 40 percent suggest that treatments have failed the gender distressed population.

As a young person, I was correctly diagnosed with gender dysphoria and then approved for hormones and surgery by Dr. Paul Walker, the original author of the “Harry Benjamin International Standards of Care.” The treatment was not effective.

I discovered firsthand that society wasn’t the cause of transgender suicide and suicide attempts. The cause was an unfulfilled expectation that cross-gender hormones and surgery would effectively resolve gender distress.

I remain open to the possibility that a biological predisposition to transgender identities may be found. Whether it is found or not, my hope is that today’s barbaric, mutilating gender-change procedures will be replaced by an effective treatment that eliminates the high rate of suicide ideation and brings long-lasting relief to those with gender dysphoria.


Portrait of Walt Heyer

Walt Heyer is an author and public speaker. Through his website,, and his blog,, Heyer raises public awareness about those who regret gender change and the tragic consequences suffered as a result.

A Note for our Readers:

Trust in the mainstream media is at a historic low—and rightfully so given the behavior of many journalists in Washington, D.C.

Ever since Donald Trump was elected president, it is painfully clear that the mainstream media covers liberals glowingly and conservatives critically.

Now journalists spread false, negative rumors about President Trump before any evidence is even produced.

Americans need an alternative to the mainstream media. That’s why The Daily Signal exists.

The Daily Signal’s mission is to give Americans the real, unvarnished truth about what is happening in Washington and what must be done to save our country.

Our dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts rely on the financial support of patriots like you.

Your donation helps us fight for access to our nation’s leaders and report the facts.

You deserve the truth about what’s going on in Washington.

Please make a gift to support The Daily Signal.


EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is by Altayb/Getty Images.

Has the Republican Controlled Florida Legislature Protected Florida’s Legal Workers?

Answer: NO!

Before I show you the proof let me give you some background information. Back in 2007 I joined with a group of Patriots out of South Florida looking to find a solution to end the invasion by illegal aliens to Florida.

The consensus we reached was the invasion would stop if we could get mandatory E-Verify passed into law so only legal workers could get jobs. Any reasonable person would say that should be doable. In 2007 the cost to taxpayers at that time to educate, medicate and incarcerate illegal aliens was $1,850,000,000.00 ($1.85 Billion).

We began attending meetings, sending emails and letters to the Florida Legislators to get mandatory E-Verify passed. In 2010 Rick Scott, a successful Businessman, ran for governor.

We backed him 100% since he stated:

“We have over 700,000 illegal immigrants in the state. They’re costing us billions of dollars, and they’re taking legal residents’ jobs.”

“Rick will require all Florida employers to use the free E-Verify system to ensure that their workers are legal.”

Immediately after taking office Governor Scott ordered all state offices to use E-Verify in dealing with State contractors but was silent about his campaign promise to protect legal workers. However:

On June 12, 2012 Governor Scott stated at a meeting of the Florida Citrus Mutual in Bonita Springs,

“Now, with the regard to E-Verify, as you know we did it for people who do business with state government but we’ve got to have a national E-Verify program because I don’t want to put Florida businesses at a competitive disadvantage.”
Scott lied to Florida’s voters!

Since then two bills regarding immigration have passed into law. One was to give illegal aliens instate tuition and the second was to allow an illegal alien passed the bar exam to practice law in Florida.

Last year the cost to Taxpayers educate, medicate and incarcerate illegal aliens was $6,300,000,000.00 ($6.3 Billion), more than triple the cost in 2007.

Here is a list of all the failed legislation for the past ten years. Please keep in mind during that time the republicans have held super majorities in both houses and could pass any legislation they wanted.

2008 Session

HB 73 Illegal Immigration
General Bill by: Brown

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

HB 159 Enforcement of Immigration Laws
General Bill by: Adams

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

SB 388 Security and Immigration Compliance Act [LPCC]
General Bill by: Fasano

Last Event: Monday, May 05, 2008 – 05/02/08 S Died in Committee on Military Affairs and Domestic Security

SB 540 Felons/Enforcement of Federal Immigration Laws [LPCC]
General Bill by: Baker

Last Event: Monday, May 05, 2008 – 05/02/08 S Died in Committee on Criminal Justice

HB 571 Illegal Aliens
General Bill by: Kravitz

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

HB 577 Illegal or Undocumented Aliens
General Bill by: Williams, T.

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

HB 821 Illegal Immigration
General Bill by: Harrell

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

CS/SB 1086 Illegal or Undocumented Aliens/DOC [LPCC]
General Bill by: Criminal Justice, Bennett

Last Event: Monday, May 05, 2008 – 05/02/08 S Died on Calendar

HB 1247 Immigration Status of Inmates
General Bill by: Gelber

Last Event: Friday, May 02, 2008 – Died in Committee on State Affairs

SB 1364 Immigration [LPCC]
General Bill by: Villalobos

Last Event: Monday, May 05, 2008 – 05/02/08 S Died in Committee on Criminal Justice

SB 2738 Immigration Status of Inmates [LPCC]
General Bill by: Deutch

Last Event: Monday, May 05, 2008 – 05/02/08 S Died in Committee on Criminal Justice

2009 Session

HB 163 Illegal Aliens in the Correctional System
General Bill by: Williams, T.

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – Died in Public Safety & Domestic Security Policy Committee

CS/SB 352 Inmates/Illegal or Undocumented Aliens/Deportation [SPSC]
General Bill by: Judiciary, Bennett

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – 05/02/09 S Died in Committee on Criminal and Civil Justice Appropriations

CS/HB 567 Illegal Immigration
General Bill by: Economic Development & Community Affairs Policy Council, Schenck

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – Died on Second Reading Calendar

CS/HB 915 Enforcement of Immigration Laws
General Bill by: Governmental Affairs Policy Committee, Adams

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – Died in Economic Development & Community Affairs Policy Council

SB 1532 Illegal Immigration [GPSC]
General Bill by: Storms

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – 05/02/09 S Died in Committee on Military Affairs and Domestic Security

SB 1890 Illegal Aliens [SPSC]
General Bill by: Storms

Last Event: Saturday, May 02, 2009 – 05/02/09 S Died in Committee on Criminal Justice

2010 Session

CS/CS/HB 219 Immigration
General Bill by: Economic Development & Community Affairs Policy Council, Governmental Affairs Policy Committee, Adams

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Messages

HB 421 Immigration
General Bill by: Adkins

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – Died in Governmental Affairs Policy Committee

HB 503 Illegal Immigration
General Bill by: Schenck

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – Died in Policy Council

SB 600 Inmates/Illegal or Undocumented Aliens/Deportation [SPSC]
General Bill by: Bennett

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Committee on Judiciary

SB 856 Immigration [CPSC]
General Bill by: Baker

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Committee on Regulated Industries

HB 919 Illegal or Undocumented Aliens
General Bill by: Roberson, K.

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – Died in Governmental Affairs Policy Committee

SB 1880 Enforcement of Immigration Laws [GPSC]
General Bill by: Detert

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Committee on Governmental Oversight and Accountability

SB 2162 Illegal Aliens [SPSC]
General Bill by: Storms

Last Event: Friday, April 30, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Committee on Criminal Justice

SB 2368 Illegal Immigration [GPSC]
General Bill by: Storms

Last Event: Monday, May 03, 2010 – 04/30/10 S Died in Committee on Military Affairs and Domestic Security

2011 Session

HB 691 Verification of Employment Eligibility
General Bill by: Harrell

Last Event: 05/07/11 Died in Government Operations Subcommittee

SB 518 Verification of Employment Eligibility
General Bill by: Hays

Last Event: 05/09/11 Died in Judiciary

CS/SB 2040 Enforcement of Immigration Laws
General Bill by: Judiciary/SB 2040 – Enforcement of Immigration Laws

Last Event: Saturday, May 07, 2011 – Died in Messages

CS/HB 7089 Enforcement of Immigration Laws
General Bill by: Economics Affairs Committee, Judiciary Committee, Snyder

Last Event: Saturday, May 07, 2011- Died pending review of CS under Rule

2012 Session

HB 1315 Verification of Employment Eligibility
General Bill by: Harrell

Last Event: 05/12/12 Died in Government Operations Subcommittee

SB 1638 Verification of Employment Eligibility
General Bill by: Altman

Last Event: 05/12/12 Died in Judiciary

2016 Session

CS/CS/HB 675: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Metz

Last Action: 3/11/2016 Senate – Died in Judiciary

SB 872: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Bean

Last Action: 3/11/2016 Senate – Died in Judiciary

SB 150: Offenses by Illegal Immigrants
General Bill by Hutson

Last Action: 3/11/2016 Senate – Died in Criminal Justice

2017 Session

SB 82: Postsecondary Education Tuition and Fee Waivers
General Bill by Steube ;

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Education

CS/HB 83: Offenses by Aliens Unlawfully Present in the United States
General Bill by Eagle

Last Action: 5/5/2017 House – Died in Judiciary Committee

CS/SB 120: Offenses by Aliens Unlawfully Present in the United States
General Bill Hutson

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Appropriations

CS/HB 427: Refugee Assistance Programs
General Bill by Santiago

Last Action: 5/5/2017 House – Died in Health and Human Services Committee

SB 1674: Enforcement of Federal Laws
General Bill by Torres

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Judiciary

SB 1358: Reentry into the State by Certain Persons
General Bill by Steube

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Judiciary

HB 1407: Enforcement of Federal Laws
General Bill by Smith ; Jacquet

Last Action: 5/5/2017 House – Died in Criminal Justice Subcommittee

HB 443: Verification of Employment Eligibility
General Bill by Gruters

Last Action: 5/5/2017 House – Died in Careers and Competition Subcommittee

CS/HB 83: Offenses by Aliens Unlawfully Present in the United States
General Bill by Eagle

Last Action: 5/5/2017 House – Died in Judiciary Committee

CS/HB 697: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Metz

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Judiciary

SB 786: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Bean

Last Action: 5/5/2017 Senate – Died in Judiciary

2018 Session

CS/HB 9: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Metz

Last Action: 3/10/2018 Senate – Died in Judiciary

SB 308: Federal Immigration Enforcement
General Bill by Bean

Last Action: 3/10/2018 Senate – Died in Judiciary

Time to drain the Tallahassee Swamp!

Calling BS on Marijuana Research + Video on Effects of Marijuana Legalization in Colorado

Politicizing Research?

A slew of news articles flooded the print, broadcast, and internet media this week about two new studies published in Monday’s online issue of JAMA Internal Medicine.

One study found that states with medical marijuana laws are associated with reductions in Medicare Part D opioid prescriptions, compared to states that do not have such laws. The other found a similar association in states with both medical and recreational marijuana laws in the Medicaid population.

Lead author of the first study is David Bradford, PhD, at the School of Public and International Affairs of the University of Georgia. UGA sent out a press release promoting Dr. Bradford’s study with this title: “SPIA Professor Pens New Study: Legalized Medical Cannabis Lowers Opioid Use.”

Not quite.

Dr. Bradford’s study finds a correlation between states with medical marijuana laws and a reduction in opioid prescriptions, not use. And only in the Medicare Part D population, not the whole population. Dr. Bradford himself notes this when citing the study’s limitations in his journal article. Yet many of the news stories picked up his university’s headline.

And he pushed this misinformation along in interviews he gave to the press, telling the Cox Media Group, “’There are substantial reductions in opiate use’ in states that have initiated dispensaries for medical marijuana,” when in fact there are significant reductions in opioid prescriptions rather than use.

Dr. Bradford also tells his interviewers that the 2017 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS) review of the marijuana literature found “conclusive evidence that there are benefits to cannabis for chronic pain in adults, for nausea associated with chemotherapy, and for spasticity and seizures.” He doesn’t understand that all of the evidence for the last three conditions and most of it for chronic pain came from randomized controlled trials of purified cannabinoids rather the kinds of marijuana states have legalized for medical use.

He tells AP reporter Malcolm Ritter that the NAS report presents evidence that is “hard to ignore” and therefore federal laws should be changed to allow doctors to prescribe marijuana for pain treatment.

An accompanying editorial in the journal by two physicians not affiliated with these studies notes that other studies find legal marijuana increases opioid use. They warn than marijuana policy has gotten far ahead of marijuana science and we must remedy this quickly.

Perhaps people with chronic pain will get more relief from purified cannabinoids than opioids, but we won’t know that until randomized, controlled trials are conducted to find out if that’s true. At best, ecological studies like the two published this week can push us towards research, but certainly not policy.

Read “Association Between US State Medical Cannabis Laws and Opioid Prescribing in the Medicare Part D Population” here.

Read “Association of Medical and Adult-Use Marijuana Laws With Opioid Prescribing for Medicaid Enrollees” here.

Read “The Role of Cannabis Legalization in the Opioid Crisis” here.

Marijuana May Lead Nonsmokers to Cigarettes

A study from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health finds that while cigarette smoking has been on the decline for many years, marijuana use is on the rise—and may end that decline.

The study found that marijuana use may

  • Increase the initiation of smoking cigarettes among nonsmokers.
  • Make it harder for smokers who also use marijuana to stop smoking cigarettes, and
  • Make former smokers who use marijuana more likely to relapse to cigarette smoking.

These findings came from an analysis of data from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions in 2001-2002 and 2004-2005 via responses from 36,639 individuals asked about marijuana use and smoking. The effects occurred among all marijuana users, not just those with marijuana use disorders.

Read study here.

New Film on YouTube Shows Effects of Marijuana Legalization in Colorado

Curious about what marijuana legalization looks like in Colorado? View Marijuana Xhere. Filmmaker Michael De Leon has put his director’s cut on YouTube so that you can watch this movie free of charge.

To view, click picture or here.

EDITORS NOTE: The Marijuana Report is a weekly e-newsletter published by National Families in Action in partnership with SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana). Visit National Families in Action’s website, The Marijuana Report.Org, to learn more about the marijuana story unfolding across the nation. Subscribe to The Marijuana Report.

This Incident Shows How Heeding Warning Signs of a School Shooter Works Better Than Gun Control

All of the glaring red flags surrounding the Parkland shooter were ignored.

Authorities failed to connect the dots through years of bad behavior, incidents on and off campus, as well as reports from concerned citizens that the shooter was displaying worrisome behavior.

According to a CNN report, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter even used to introduce himself to people by saying, “Hi, I’m Nick. I’m a school shooter.”

He should never have been able to pass a background check when he acquired his weapon if he had any kind of criminal record that seemed to be highly warranted.

Though protests and media coverage have focused almost entirely on the issue of gun control, it’s not hard to see how had other measures been taken the shooter could have been stopped well before he was able to commit mass murder.

A recent case in Kentucky shows how we can sometimes stop these incidents long before violence takes place, and without stripping people of their constitutionally protected rights.

Police arrested a student at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington, Kentucky, in February after they identified a series of warning signs about his behavior.

The case began when the police received an “anonymous tip to a school safety tipline,” according to the Lexington Herald Leader.

The tipster told police that the student, Timothy Felker, had been making threats to shoot himself, specific students, and people at his school more generally.

Sound familiar?

Felker was also otherwise behaving erratically.

After allegedly purchasing a firearm with money his mother gave him for a tattoo, he posted pictures on social media of putting a gun in his mouth.

Police arrested Felker at an airport after getting a mental health petition, and authorities charged him with “terroristic threatening,” WKYT reported.

Unlike with the Parkland shooting, authorities followed up on warning signs, and arrested a clearly troubled teen before an incident took place.

“This is an example of best practices in action,” Fayette County Schools Superintendent Manny Caulk said, according to the Herald Leader. “It’s about connections with students and multi-agency collaboration. The speed at which we’re able to share information is a reflection of the systems we have built to link students, school, and district administrators with law enforcement officers at the school, city, and federal level.”

The laws worked and concerned citizens and authorities intervened.

It was the anti-Parkland.

The Kentucky situation gets to the point that to prevent violence at schools, we need to do better as a society in identifying the warning signs and cultural maladies that are leading people to commit these horrible crimes.

As Amy Swearer, The Heritage Foundation’s visiting legal fellow at the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, wrote, there are three common traits of school shooters.

The first common trait is that they are often people with a serious mental illness.

“It is not uncommon for a school attacker to have acted in increasingly disruptive and violent ways before the shooting,” Swearer wrote. “But for a variety of reasons, these individuals are often not involuntarily committed to a mental health institution or ordered by a court to receive mental health treatment.”

The second trait is fatherlessness and broken homes.

As Emilie Kao, The Heritage Foundation’s director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society, wrote:

Among the 25 most-cited school shooters since Columbine, 75 percent were reared in broken homes. Psychologist Dr. Peter Langman, a pre-eminent expert on school shooters, found that most came from incredibly broken homes of not just divorce and separation, but also infidelity, substance abuse, criminal behavior, domestic violence, and child abuse.

The third trait is economic insecurity, as Swearer explained: “A major study by criminologists at Northwestern University looked at the effect of economic conditions on the prevalence of school shootings and concluded that there is a significant correlation between periods of increased economic insecurity and periods of increased gun violence at schools.”

Unfortunately, very little was said about these issues at the March for Our Lives rally. Protesters blamed the National Rifle Association and gun ownership for violence rather than the killers themselves, or the cultural dysfunction that may be feeding their lives of crime.


Portrait of Jarrett Stepman

Jarrett Stepman is an editor and commentary writer for The Daily Signal and co-host of “The Right Side of History” podcast. Send an email to Jarrett. Twitter: .

RELATED ARTICLE: Concealed Carry on Campus Is More Common, and Useful, Than You Thought

A Note for our Readers:

Trust in the mainstream media is at a historic low—and rightfully so given the behavior of many journalists in Washington, D.C.

Ever since Donald Trump was elected president, it is painfully clear that the mainstream media covers liberals glowingly and conservatives critically.

Now journalists spread false, negative rumors about President Trump before any evidence is even produced.

Americans need an alternative to the mainstream media. That’s why The Daily Signal exists.

The Daily Signal’s mission is to give Americans the real, unvarnished truth about what is happening in Washington and what must be done to save our country.

Our dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts rely on the financial support of patriots like you.

Your donation helps us fight for access to our nation’s leaders and report the facts.

You deserve the truth about what’s going on in Washington.

Please make a gift to support The Daily Signal.


EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel. (Photo: Amy Beth Bennett/TNS/Newscom)

Copyright © 2024 LLC. A Florida Cooperation. All rights reserved. The is a not-for-profit news forum for intelligent Conservative commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own. Republishing of columns on this website requires the permission of both the author and editor. For more information contact: