Pope Canonizes Christian Martyrs Slain by Muslim Turks

Enza Ferreri, Blog of London-based Italian journalist on politics, society, religion, environment, posted the following on his blog:

Pope Benedetto XVI announced that he will leave his ministry at 8pm on February 28.

He made this announcement during a consistory for the canonization of the martyrs of Otranto beheaded one by one by the Ottoman Turks.

Antonio Primaldo and his companions, 800 Christians, were murdered for hatred of their faith by Muslims during the Turkish siege of the town of Otranto, in South-East Italy, on August 13, 1480.

As the Qu’ran commands, these infidels were offered the choice to convert to Islam or be slayed. When they refused, the martyrs of Otranto were massacred.

The Qu’ran is obeyed and applied in the same way now as it was in 1480. The only difference between now and then is in the power and military force Muslim armies had then but now now. Let’s make sure that it remains this way in the West.

In other parts of the world, Christians are still massacred by Muslims for their faith. Nothing has changed in Islamic doctrine, only the relationship of strength can be a defence for whomever Muslims consider their enemies.

An observation about the different use of the word “martyr”: in Christianity, unlike in Islam, martyrs do not kill. [My emphasis]

To learn more about the Martyrs of Otranto click here.

To follow Mr. Ferreri here: @EnzaFerreri on Twitter | enza.ferreri on Facebook

50 Shades of Grey – Pedophilia Hiding In Plain Sight

The Ulsterman Report, August 16, 2012

The story of convicted child rapist Jerry Sandusky is well known.  So too is the 50 Shades of Grey phenomena, a book that has become so popular among women that some are referring to it as “Mommy Porn” for the masses.  That description is actually a lot more disturbing than a lot of folks are currently realizing.

Yes, 50 Shades is pornography. Like most pornography, the story line is weak, the characters one-dimensional, while the sex itself graphic, detailed, but formulaic. The underlying theme to 50 Shades is something far more sinister and appalling though than your mere run-of-the-mill porn. It is pedophilia. It is child porn. Kiddie porn.

Now I know after saying that, many female fans of 50 Shades, many of them mothers, will naturally put up a defense against that kind of description.  These women, being mothers, are naturally wired to protect kids.  People like Jerry Sandusky are viewed with hatred, revulsion, and disgust.  Rightfully so.  What mother would want to condone anything having to do with the sexual abuse of children?  Of innocents?

But that is exactly what 50 Shades of Grey is really about.  It is a story of a girl being sexually molested, over and over again, by a male figure with all the power, all the control.  It is the classic abuse scenario.  And mothers are, in some cases, quite literally getting off on it, which takes the disgust of this phenomena to a whole other frightening level.

So having put that out there, and I hope I haven’t lost any of you just yet.  I owe you an explanation after having made that kind of accusation about a book some of you may be reading right now.  I’ll start with a bit of background first.

My professional experience centers around nearly 20 years with Child Protective Services.  Over that time, I’ve seen situations that do, literally, keep me up at night.  The amount of abuse that is going on in our society, that sexualization of our kids…well basically, what you hear about, what is reported in the news, that is only a small sample of just how large of a problem and the disgusting acts that are going on every day.  Kids are being raped.  Kids are being abused.  Every single day.  Over and over and over again.

50-Shades-Movie-Official-CastI didn’t seek out 50 Shades of Grey.  It was brought to my attention by a longtime friend who is also a clinical psychologist at a university.  She’s a bit older than me.  She grew up in the counter culture era and did her fair share of experimentation of all kinds.  So she’s hardly a prude.  What she today though is a mother and grandmother.  And she’s smart.  One of the things that fascinates her is this age of cultural phenomena.  How due to technology things now spread so quickly throughout society and become the next big thing at an increasingly rapid pace.  She says sometimes this phenomena is pretty much harmless, and other times it can be very damaging to kids and or adults who begin to emulate something out of a need to belong to the “next big thing”.

Her reaction to 50 Shades of Grey though was much more aggressively negative than anything I could recall her talking about before.  It came up because I mentioned it to her offhand.  I had seen a couple mentions of it on the news and knowing her interest in cultural trends, asked her about it.  She stopped talking, looked right at me, and said the book was about pedophilia.   And it was her who then connected it to the Sandusky tragedy where so many young boys had been sexually abused. Sandusky committed his acts of crime under the cover of actually helping youth.  That is how he gained access.  My friend said 50 Shades was basically the same exact thing.  Its cover was a story of a young woman engaging is a very graphic sexual relationship with a somewhat older man.

The problem for her, and it was a BIG PROBLEM, was that the narrator in the story, was in fact, an underage girl.  My friend indicated, based on the use of language in the narration, that this girl was likely no more than 12 or 13 years of age.  I made mention that the girl in the story was actually getting ready to graduate college.  My friend, a woman with years of experience as a clinical psychologist, whose expertise I had personally witnessed a number of times over the years, shook her head and told me that she would not be able to convince me by simply talking about it.  She said I should read the book myself, but do so with the eyes of somebody whose job it had been for many years to try and protect children.  As someone who has seen over and over the signs of abuse, and the damages of abuse.   Because there are always warning signs.  I know that.  How many times have I heard people horrified in saying “I can’t believe I didn’t see that”  “How couldn’t I have known?”  Or even worse, “I knew something wasn’t right but I didn’t want to believe they were capable of doing something like that.”

I’ll try and summarize my friend’s words at this point as best I can.

“Sexual predators are cons.  They almost always have a cover.  It’s that cover which allows them access.  50 Shades of Grey is a con.  It now has access to millions of readers.  It is a story about abuse from beginning to end.  And it’s not just the abuse of a man and a woman – it’s the abuse of a man and a girl.

When you read it, look for the signs.  They are all there.

The female character has no sexual experience.  None.  She is given the age of 21, but that age is itself a cover.  Her true emotional age is much-much younger.  She has never even masturbated.  She has never even experienced an orgasm.  That alone is one of the greatest attractions to the pedophile.  That is the psychology of that kind of act.  You get off on taking purity.

But move from the fact the girl has no sexual experience whatsoever.  Now pay attention to her narrative dialogue.  Really listen to how she talks.  Again, she’s not talking like a young woman, she’s talking like a girl.  She talks about cartwheels, and skipping, over and over again it is the language and the imagery of a girl.

After that this girl has her innocence taken from her.  The abuser, the older man, makes her think its her choice.  Again, you and I both know that is one of the primary tools of the pedophile.  They create an environment where the child feels it’s their idea.  It’s what they want. But what happens after that innocence is taken away?  Then the abuser becomes more openly abusive. Controlling.  In this story he tells the little girl how to speak.  What to wear.  What to eat.  He is Daddy and she is daughter.  When you read it read it like a mother who is also a woman who is experienced with the real life tragedy of abuse.

And there is many more themes about that abuse in this book.  There is spanking and the use of Baby oil.  Why baby oil?  Think about it.  The girl wears pigtails.  She complains that he is treating her like a child.  He says she acts like a child.  There is even a scene where the abuser creates a situation to take her innocence from her again.  He rips out her tampon and engages in forceful sex yet again.  Her hymen is ripped, and the bloody remnants of it are again symbolized in an act of pedophile rape.”

She went on to say there are women now defending the book, and she understands that, but it concerns her.  A great deal, because she is absolutely convinced the book is purposely advocating the raping of a child and attempting to normalize that atrocity.

So, I left that conversation thinking maybe my friend was exaggerating.  I had a hard time believing something so popular could actually have such a sinister and revolting theme, and while I respected her expertise and experience, thought this time she had to be seeing something that just wasn’t there.

I got the book, I sat down, and I read it.

The first thing that struck me was how poor the writing was.  It wasn’t just bad.  It was horrible.  But horrible writing is no crime, (thank goodness or I would have been put away a long time ago) and it doesn’t make the content of the story evil.  But in my reading of it, just like my friend said, the theme of child abuse, of pedophilia, was right there in plain sight.  I remember being told a long time ago that sometimes the best way to hide something is in plain sight.  That is what 50 Shades of Grey is really doing.

The main character had no sexual experience.  None.  She was an innocent.  She was a kid who had just had her first drink of alcohol.  No way that was an accident by the author.  That author had to have purposely made her, despite her given age of 21, by any other measure, a little girl.  At that point, it struck me as odd.  In my business, we call that a warning signal. A sign we may have a problem.

From there, just like my friend had warned, it got worse.  Much worse.  And she was right, her telling me about it did not have the impact of me reading it myself with eyes open.  She had given me the signs to look for, and as I turned the pages, those signs confirmed it over and over again.

The narration, which is the voice of the girl talking to the reader, was the voice of a little girl.  It’s unmistakable.  There is very little emotional maturity and absolutely no sexual maturity.  She is seduced by this man in the very same way a pedophile seduces a child.  The male character is Gerry Sandusky.  He makes a show of his money, his power, the things he can buy for her, but while this is going on, we are reading the thoughts of a child.  We are reading the seduction of a little girl by a pedophile.  She is almost completely powerless.  She is naïve even for a teenager, and certainly much much more naïve than a college student.  She is incapable of even making the most simple of every day decisions and must be told what to do by her abuser, who in turn though spends a lot of time and effort convincing this child this is really what she wants.  I’ve seen this before.  Too often.  Too many times.  And it always leaves me sickened.

We are reading child pornography.  Remove the false age of the girl, which has no basis in reality, and what we are actually reading is the abuse of a little girl.

The main character is described in pigtails, given words like “Holy Cow”  “down there”, “jeez”  “double crap” she can’t operate a computer (but is supposedly a college graduate), describes skipping and doing cartwheels, repeatedly says she is made to feel like a child, has her imaginary friend (inner goddess) feels shame, is spanked and slathered in BABY OIL, told what to say, what to eat, what to do, until finally and sadly so predictably, is physically beaten.  (But she returns to him soon after, which is again, a very common theme of abuse, including pedophilia)

And beyond all of this evidence there is the fact that the male character is himself a product of sexual abuse at the hands of a pedophile.  The girl whose thoughts we listen in on as she is being abused, recognizes this aspect of the male abuser, but apparently, is too naïve or unwilling to realize she has continued this cycle of abuse herself. (Which again reinforces the idea that she is actually herself just a child)  There is no way the author did this by accident.  She puts out the theme of pedophilia openly, therefore hiding it in plain sight.

People who have had to deal with the real world of sexual abuse of children will understand this perhaps more easily than others.  How the pedophile is so often themselves victims of earlier abuse.  They enter society, they become fathers or mothers, but so often they too become abusive.  They seek out dominance, control, and the taking of innocence just as it was taken from them.  Those who were once abused, become the abuser.  It is the sad sick and tragic cycle of pedophilia.

With 50 Shades of Grey this abnormal condition is trying to be normalized.  Thanks to the insight of my friend, and my own experience,  I know it for what it truly is – a story of the sexual abuse of child, wrapped in the cliché cover story of a mysterious and troubled wealthy man.  That is another thing my clinical psychologist friend pointed out later.  Take away the aspect of money, and the character of the abuser becomes much less attractive and therefore it would have been much more difficult to pull of the deception.  Are women actually that shallow?  Yes, we can be.

But women, the vast majority of us, are not people who knowingly condone the sexual abuse of children.  We do not condone in any way, the horror that is pedophilia.

Sadly though, that is exactly what is happening with the popularity of 50 Shades of Grey.  It’s a pedophilia con.

It is one of the most horrible and sickening acts against the most powerless of our society, hiding in plain sight.

Maybe my friend put it best when we talked all of this over.  50 Shades of Grey didn’t excite her.  She didn’t find it interesting, sexy, or romantic.

50 Shades of Grey made her weep.  It made her sick.  It made her think of the abuses of all of those kids by a demented, warped monster like Jerry Sandusky, who, just like the pedophilia of 50 Shades of Grey, was hiding in plain sight.

FOLLOW UP:

Fifty Shades Pedophilia Abuse Controversy Revisited

Florida legislators introduce bills to create Marriage Education Handbook

Tallahassee, FL – State Senator Kelli Stargel filed SB-1586 and Florida State Representative Dennis Baxley has filed companion bill HB-1163, to create a Marriage Education Handbook. The handbook will be distributed statewide through the offices of the clerk of the court to couples applying for a marriage license and will include information on communication skills, conflict resolution, parenting, managing finances and where a married couple can get personal or professional help with their marriage should they need it in the future.

Senator Stargel stated, “So many young couples getting married today come from broken homes and cannot draw upon a living example of how a marriage works. Marriage is one of the greatest safeguards against poverty in our society and this handbook will be an invaluable resource to hundreds of thousands of newly married couples to hekp them develop healthy and strong marriages.”

Representative Baxley commented, “The state has a compelling interest in keeping marriages and families successful and thriving. In Florida alone, the taxpayers cost as a result of family fragmentation from divorce and unwed child bearing is just short of two billion dollars every year. Every marriage that is saved and strengthened is both an economic and a social victory for Florida.”

Several other states have created Marriage Handbooks including Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas and Utah.

An amendment will be offered to ensure the handbook also includes resources and help for victims of domestic violence and to give more specific instructions to the clerk of courts regarding distribution of the handbook. There is no expected economic impact as the design and production of the booklet will be paid for by funds raised from grant requests with private foundations.

Florida House rejects Obamacare Medicaid expansion

John Hayward from Human Events reports:

On the eve of convening of the 2013 session, the House Select Committee on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act rejected the expansion. A Senate counterpart committee postponed consideration of the issue, which is sure to be one of the biggest controversies of the session.

Scott, a Republican who bitterly fought President Barack Obama’s national healthcare plan as a candidate and in his first two years as governor, stunned conservative supporters on February 20 when he endorsed a three-year expansion of Medicaid, provided the federal government picks up the full cost for the first three years as promised.

“There’s definitely a fight between the governor and the (state) legislature over this. The Republicans in the legislature are much more fiscally conservative than his actions have shown him to be,” said Susan MacManus, a Tampa-based political scientist at the University of South Florida.

Republican legislative leaders have been openly hostile toward the plan, emphasizing that state lawmakers will make the final decision in drawing up a budget for next fiscal year.

The Florida based James Madison institute released the following statement:

The House made the right decision today to not draft a committee bill expanding Medicaid under PPACA provisions. Many Members expressed valid concerns that this could hurt the people that it is aimed at helping. State leaders should focus on providing more access to quality care — expanding a program that is inefficient in this effort is not a way to do that.

Additionally, in our recent poll of 600 registered Florida voters more than 63 percent said they are wary that the federal government would keep the funding level promises made, and clearly many House Members share this worry. If history is any indicator, costs of such programs are often underestimated and there has been examples of the federal government going back on their promise before. These issues cannot be ignored.

Why Did It Become Hateful to Support Marriage?

A YouTube video is going viral done by Anna Maria Hoffman.

Hoffman writes on Counter Culture blog:

Dan Savage, an anti-bullying activist, has once again been caught red-handed bullying people who do not subscribe to his agenda. This week, he crossposted my vlog“Why Did It Become Hateful to Support Marriage?”, to his wonderful, sexually explicit, and tolerant blog called Slog.

He not only charmingly called me a “dingbat,” but also did not understand the point of my video: to stop the hateful rhetoric thrown at people who want to restore a culture of marriage.

He also gave me more compliments in another Slog post, which featured some of my tweets.

Yesterday, he and I had this lovely conversation on Twitter, where he spelled out his own hypocrisy.

Brian Camenker in his seminal work, “What same-sex “marriage” has done to Massachusetts” states:

“On November 18, 2003, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court announced its Goodridge opinion, declaring that it was unconstitutional not to allow same-sex “marriage.” Six months later, despite public outrage, homosexual “weddings” began to take place. And that was just the beginning . . .”

Anyone who thinks that same-sex “marriage” is a benign eccentricity which won’t affect the average person should consider what it has done to Massachusetts since 2004. It’s become a hammer to force the acceptance and normalization of homosexuality on everyone. The slippery slope is real. New radical demands never cease. What has happened in the last several years is truly frightening.

Anna Marie is living the “truly frightening” part of the same sex marriage world.

Yahoo News reports, “Lech Walesa, the Polish democracy icon and Nobel peace prize winner, has sparked outrage in Poland by saying that gays have no right to a prominent role in politics and that as a minority they need to ‘adjust to smaller things’. Walesa said in a television interview on Friday that he believes gays have no right to sit on the front benches in Parliament and, if represented at all, should sit in the back, “and even behind a wall.”

In January the Washington Post reported on protests against gay marriage in France, “France isn’t Scandinavia. If you add up the state-by-state numbers, it isn’t even America. A crowd of more than 300,000 took the fight to the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris to protest the president’s plan to legalize gay marriage and allow same-sex couples to adopt and conceive children. You have to do a lot to get attention in a country used to demonstrations. This succeeded. The slogans, signs and chants favoring “Daddy, Mommy” and insisting “Mariageophile pas homophobe” proved Sunday that France is indeed unpredictable. When it comes to social issues, apparently, laissez-faire has its limits.”

Stealth Gay Marriage Bill stopped in committee but is it dead?

According to the Florida Family Policy Council (FFPC), “On February 20, 2013 at approximately 3:25 p.m. in the Florida Senate Children and Families committee, a deceptive and highly controversial bill died. The bill, SB 196, was labeled as a domestic partnership but actually attempted to create a full blown civil union and a form of homosexual marriage in direct violation of the Florida Marriage Protection Amendment passed by Floridians in 2008 by 62%.”

Several pro-family leaders spoke during the committee meeting in opposition to the bill.  Those speakers in opposition included John Stemberger President of Florida Family Action, Michael B. Sheedy, Director for Public Policy for the Florida Family Catholic Conference of Bishops and Bill Bunkley President of Florida Voices.

John Stemberger, Florida Family Action president, pointed out that the bill was unconstitutional because it violated the Florida Defense of Marriage Act.  Stemberger told the committee that  unlike the language used by cities and counties across Florida that adopted Domestic Partnership Registries, SB 196 was much broader.  This broader language violated the “substantial equivalent to marriage” prohibition in the Florida Defense of Marriage Act.

The bill died as a result of the sponsor Committee Chairman Senator Eleanor Sobel (D-FL District 33) temporarily postponing a vote on the bill because she knew she did not have the votes to pass it after two and a half hours of debate. This also prevented the Senators on the committee from voting on the record which is an increasing challenge in trying to hold legislators accountable.

“This bill would have further undermined the institution of marriage by creating an alternate union which would have competed with, diluted, and therefore devalued natural marriage as the ideal arrangement for society,” notes FFPC.

FFPC states in an email to supporters:

Republican Senator Nancy Detert (FL District 28) made it clear  after hearing from the public that she  should would not support the bill as written but would support a Domestic Partnership bill if it were modeled similar to the one adopted by the City of Sarasota.  If Sobel rewrites the bill to Detert’s liking the bill will most likely pass this committee since Detert is the swing vote.

The committee rejected SB 196 by voice vote.  The language proposed at the committee meeting lost by one vote.  Committee Chair and sponsor of SB 196 Eleanor Sobel said after the voice vote that she wanted to “TP” (temporarily postpone) the action taken on the bill.  Therefore, the bill will most likely be back with narrower language and could pass this committee because of Senator Detert’s support for leaner wording.

Senator Detert’s district includes Sarasota County, FL. The City of Sarasota has created a domestic partnership registry promoted by former Sarasota City Commissioner Ken Shelin, who is gay. According to Florida Agenda:

Thanks in part to an opinion from [Pam Bondi] Florida’s attorney general that permits them, the Sunshine State now boasts nine cities and five counties with domestic partner registries, seven of them established in the last year. “In Florida, it’s almost like a wildfire,” says Ken Shelin, a former Sarasota city commissioner who supports establishing a registry, and who lobbied current commissioners in May about considering one. “I know that some people think that there’s a hidden agenda here—that there’s a gay agenda,” said Shelin. “But 90 percent of domestic partners are opposite sex.”

Shelin is lobbying the North Port City Commission to establish a domestic registry. Domestic partnerships are considered by opponents as a weakening of the institution of marriage.

Rocking Preacher’s Free Speech Violated By Florida Public School

TEA Party Community reports, “Rock band leader, radio show host and international ministry organizer Bradlee Dean has been ejected from another school campus. This time, attorneys with the public interest firm Liberty Counsel have written to educators explaining that the Constitution applies on school grounds.”

Dean’s ministry, You Can Run But You Cannot Hide, says it delivers  messages of uncompromising integrity and moral values to audiences wherever he can reach them. His  organization told WND he had been scheduled to speak to the “American Club” at Spanish River High in Boca Raton, Florida.

Bradlee Dean writes on his blog:

“On Wednesday [February 13, 2013], I was set to perform an after-school voluntary presentation at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton, Fla., after having been invited by a student-led high school group, The American Club. The group has been established for two years, has had many speakers and followed the usual line of protocol for having a presentation, being pre-approved by the school administration. They hung posters three weeks before the event, and it was advertised on morning announcements all week.

We no sooner stepped foot on campus, but the principal and an effeminate teacher approached us and attempted to cancel the event on their campus with no justifiable explanation. They claimed they did not “vet” me, although they had not done so with any previous speakers The American Club has brought in.”

Dean states, “When we reminded them that their actions were unlawful, they told us that once we entered school property, we no longer had a First Amendment right.”

The US Supreme Court has ruled in Tinker v. Des Moines (1969) that “students do not leave their rights at the schoolhouse door”. To protest the Vietnam War, Mary Beth Tinker and her brother wore black armbands to school. Fearing a disruption, the administration prohibited wearing such armbands. The Tinkers were removed from school when they failed to comply, but the Supreme Court ruled that their actions were protected by the First Amendment.

Dean provides the following video taken of the event:

Who is Bradlee Dean?

All 67 Florida County Sheriffs sign pledge to protect the right of citizens to bear arms

Constitutional Sheriffs sent an email stating, “I have added the names of the following 61 Florida County Sheriffs [who] joined the previous six Florida County Sheriffs to announce that they will not enforce laws that violate the Constitution or infringe on the rights of the people to own firearms.”

This means all of Florida’s county sheriffs have now signed the pledge, the first state to achieve 100% compliance with the 2nd Amendment. The list is bi-partisan.

The following Florida Sheriffs have taken a stand to defend the second amendment:

Alachua County Sheriff Sadie Darnell
Baker County Sheriff Jerry B. Dobson
Broward County Sheriff Scott J. Israel
Calhoun County Sheriff Glenn H. Kimbrell
Charlotte County Sheriff William G. Prummell
Citrus County Sheriff Jeffrey J. Dawsy
Collier County Sheriff Kevin J. Rambosk
Columbia County Sheriff Mark A. Hunter
Desoto County Sheriff William P. Wise
Dixie County Sheriff Dewey H. Hatcher
Duval-Jacksonville County Sheriff John H. Rutherford
Escambia County Sheriff Thelbert “David” Morgan
Flagler County Sheriff James Manfre
Franklin County Sheriff Mike Mock
Gadsden County Sheriff Morris A. Young
Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Schultz
Glades County Sheriff Stuart Whiddom
Gulf County Sheriff Mike Harrison
Hamilton County Sheriff Jay Harvey Reid
Hardee County Sheriff Arnold Lanier
Hendry County Sheriff Stephen Whidden
Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis
Highlands County Sheriff Susan Benton
Hillsborough County Sheriff David A. Gee
Holmes County Sheriff Tim Brown
Indian River County Deryl B. Loar
Jackson County Sheriff Louis S. Roberts III
Jefferson County Sheriff David C. Hobbs
Lafayette County Sheriff Brian N. Lamb
Lake County Sheriff Gary Borders
Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott
Leon County Sheriff Larry Campbell
Levy County Sheriff Bobby McCallum
Liberty County Sheriff Nick Finch
Madison County Sheriff Benjamin Stewart
Manatee County Sheriff W. Brad Stuebe
Marion County Sheriff Chris Blair
Miami-Dade County Sheriff J.D. Patterson
Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay
Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper
Okaloosa County Sheriff Larry R. Ashley
Okeechobee County Sheriff Paul C. May
Orange County Sheriff Jerry L. Demmings
Osceola County Sheriff Bob Hansell
Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric L. Bradford
Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco
Pinellas County Sheriff Robert “Bob” Gualtieri
Putnam County Sheruff Jeff Hardy
St. Johns County Sheriff David B. Shoar
St. Lucie County Sheriff Ken Mascara
Santa Rosa County Sheriff O. Wendell Hall
Sarasota County Sheriff tom Knight
Seminole County Sheriff Donald Eslinger
Sumter County Sheriff William O. Farnsworth
Suwannee County Sheriff Tony G. Cameron
Taylor County Sheriff L.E. “Bummy” Williams
Union County Sheriff Jerry Whitehead
Volusia County Sheriff Ben F. Johnson
Wakulla County Sheriff Charlie Creel
Walton County Sheriff Michael A. Adkinson
Washington County Sheriff Robert Haddock

Stealth gay marriage bill introduced by Senator Eleanor Sobel (D-FL 31)

Senator Eleanor Sobel (D-FL 31)

The Florida Family Policy Council (FFPC) in an email to supporters states, “Deceptively named by its Democrat sponsor [Senator] Eleanor Sobel the ‘Families First’ bill, it at first glance appears to be creating a mere domestic partnership like the others in Florida that would usually include hospital visitation and burial rights. But then after getting deeper into the fine print of the monster 30 page bill, it is discovered that it is brazenly proposing an exact mirror of the every aspect of both Federal and Florida marriage laws allowing for gays and lesbians to enter an arrangement that is both ‘treated as marriage’ and which is not just the ‘substantial equivalent’ of marriage but audaciously attempt’s to be an exact equal to marriage.”

Senator Sobel has a long history with the GLBT community in Florida. The Sun-Herald reported in 2008, “Broward County Commissioner Ken Keechl, the first openly-gay member of the Commission, today endorsed Democratic State Senate candidate Eleanor Sobel for the open seat in District 31. Sobel, a member of the Broward School Board, has long been an ally of the GLBT community.”

“I’m excited to accept Commissioner Keechl’s endorsement,” Sobel said. “I have a long history of working with Broward’s gay and lesbian community, and Ken’s support underscores that.” Sobel and Keechl are pictured above (photo courtesy of the Sun-Herald).

Pages 19-21 of the bill SB-196 reads “Any privilege, right, or benefit granted…by marriage… is granted on equivalent terms… to an individual who is or was in a domestic partnership…”

“Therefore SB-196 is not a domestic partnership but an attempt to create a full blown civil union – or an alternative gay marriage. This bill is in direct violation of the Article I, Section 27, the Florida Marriage Protection Act, which was enacted by 62% of Floridians as Amendment 2 on the ballot in 2008 and is therefore blatantly unconstitutional on its face,” notes the FFPC.

The full text of the bill may be read here. There are currently no co-sponsors of the Senate bill.

Representative Mark S. Pafford (D-FL 86)

The companion bill in the Florida House is HB 259. HB 259 was introduced by Representative Mark S. Pafford (D-FL 86) and is co-sponsored by state Representatives Berman (D- FL 90) , Clarke-Reed (D- FL 92),  Cruz (D-FL 62), Danish (D-Fl 63), Edwards (D-FL 98), Fullwood (D-FL 13), Jones (D-FL 14), McGhee (D-FL 117), Moskowitz (D-FL 97), Rader (D-FL 81), Rangel (D-FL 43), Rouson (D-FL 70), Saunders (D-FL 49), Slosberg (D-FL 91), Stark (D-FL 104) and Stewart (D-FL 47).

Efforts are underway to create domestic partnership registries across the state of Florida. Wikipedia lists the following Florida cities with domestic partnership registries:

  • Broward County (Fort Lauderdale): Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Clearwater: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Gainesville: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Key West: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Kissimmee: Employees of the city. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Leon County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Miami Beach: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Miami-Dade County: Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. The cities of Miami and South Miami also grant additional benefits to domestic partners registered in Miami-Dade County.
  • Monroe County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. County employment benefits only.
  • Orange County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Orlando: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Palm Beach County: Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Pinellas County: Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Sarasota: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. City employment benefits only.
  • City of St. Cloud: Employees of the city. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of St. Petersburg: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Tampa: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Tavares: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Volusia County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of West Palm Beach: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.

NOTE: Senator Sobel and all of the Florida House sponsors of HB 259 represent one of these communities.

SB 196, if passed, will then allow those listed on domestic partnership registries to be considered as legally “married” in Florida. The bill would have taken effect on July 1, 2013. However, HB 259 died in Civil Justice Subcommittee.

Rubio Introduces Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio joined Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and a group of senators to introduce the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act (CIANA). If enacted, this legislation would give states the authority they need to properly enforce laws requiring a parent to be notified before their minor daughter receives an abortion.

The bill is co-sponsored by Sens. Roy Blunt (R-MO), John Boozman (R-AR), Richard Burr (R-NC), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Bob Corker (R-TN), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Deborah Fischer (R-NE), Charles Grassley (R-IA), James Inhofe (R-OK), Mike Johanns (R-NE), Rand Paul (R-KY), Jim Risch (R-ID), Pat Roberts (R-KS), David Vitter (R-LA) and Roger Wicker (R-MS). A House version of the bill is being sponsored by Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL).

Many states have adopted parental notification laws to protect minors and the rights of parents. These laws, however, are easily and often circumvented due to differing abortion laws in neighboring states. There is currently no federal framework in place to prevent a minor from traveling across state lines to undergo an abortion without parental knowledge or consent. CIANA would prohibit the act of transporting a minor to obtaining an abortion if this action evades the parental involvement law in her home state. In addition, it would require abortion providers to notify a parent of an out-of-state minor before performing an abortion.

Senator Marco Rubio: “With the rights of parents and the safety of our nation’s daughters at risk, Congress must take action to prevent underage abortions by giving states the federal backing necessary to enforce their parental involvement laws. These laws allow teenagers to receive the advice and guidance of a loved one before undergoing a procedure for which they may not be medically or emotionally prepared. Under current law, minors are subject to the exploitation and safety risks that often come from an overzealous interstate abortion industry.”

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell: “Senator Rubio is a strong advocate on behalf of American families, and I am proud to join him and several of my colleagues in introducing this important legislation.  As parents, we are responsible for our children and parental involvement is almost always required before a child can receive medical treatment, and it should also be required when their minor daughter is taken across state lines for an abortion. I believe that every life has worth, and I will continue to push for legislation that protects innocent life.”

Senator Orrin Hatch: “Senator Rubio and I have brought this bill to the table again because the parents in this nation should be permitted to guide and help their children make decisions, particularly one as profound and life-changing as choosing to have an abortion.  We’ve taken into consideration appropriate exceptions and safeguards, and we feel that this is legislation the vast majority of Americans can agree on. This bill is a legitimate, constitutional way for Congress to address this issue and help protect children and support parents.”

Senator Roy Blunt: “I’m proud to support Senator Rubio’s important legislation, which will help protect America’s children and provide more consistency regarding critical parental notification nationwide. By empowering states to enforce their laws, this bill will rightly safeguard against children making a drastic and life-changing decision without their parents’ involvement.”

Senator John Boozman: “We need to promote an appreciation for the family and for all human life. As a father I understand the importance of being involved in the lives of teenagers. This legislation arms parents with the right to stop teen abortions.  Parents need to do what is best for their children and they need to be aware of decisions they make.”

Senator Richard Burr: “I am proud to support this common sense bill which protects the rights of parents to be informed and involved in the serious life and death decisions involving their child.”

Senator Saxby Chambliss: “As a pro-life American and a father, I believe parents have every right to be involved in the health and medical decisions of their minor children. I am pleased to join my colleagues in co-sponsoring this legislation.”

Senator Charles Grassley: “This initiative values the role of parents in our society, to guide and protect their children.  The legislation is needed to support state notification laws and to prevent individuals from circumventing them, so that parents have a say in medical decisions for their children.”

Senator James Inhofe: “It is important that the Senate act to protect the young women of our country and ensure parents are involved when their children are making decisions that can lead to serious health complications and regret later in life. I have long been a staunch supporter of family values and protecting the sanctity of life, and this bill takes a positive step in promoting both. I am proud to stand by Sen. Rubio and my fellow colleagues as we continue to implement pro-life legislation in the Senate.”

Senator Mike Johanns: “Abortions can have long-term physical and psychological repercussions. Parents need to be prepared to help their children and counsel them on alternative choices, instead of being kept in the dark until it is too late.”

Senator Jim Risch: “I am pro-life and always have been.  CIANA ensures parents are involved when their child is seeking to undergo a medical procedure.  When schools can’t even give a student an aspirin without a parent’s permission, a doctor should never be allowed to perform an abortion on a minor child without at least notifying the parents.”

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the bill’s House sponsor added, “I’m pleased to have the support of my Congressional colleagues in re-introducing this commonsense legislation. This bill will protect parents’ rights to be involved in decisions relating to their minor children. There are many health and safety risks associated with abortions and it is our duty to protect minors from exploitation from the abortion industry. This bill is the right step in protecting parental rights and ensuring that young girls have a safer, healthier, and brighter future.”

Display of Ten Commandments Upheld by Federal Court

Gainesville, FL – A federal district court has dismissed the ACLU’s six-year-old challenge against a Ten Commandments monument in Dixie County, Florida. As part of the court-ordered dismissal, the ACLU will now have to pay court costs caused by its failed lawsuit.

The controversy began in late 2006, when a private citizen was granted permission to place a privately owned, six-ton monument of the Ten Commandments atop the Dixie County Courthouse steps, pursuant to a policy that allowed similar expression by all citizens. The ACLU filed a lawsuit claiming that the monument was unconstitutional because it offended “John Doe,” an anonymous 75-year-old ACLU member from North Carolina. Liberty Counsel defended the county and challenged the ACLU’s standing to bring suit on behalf of a member who lives hundreds of miles away. Initially, however, the district court held that the ACLU had standing, and ordered the removal of the monument.

Liberty Counsel quickly appealed that decision to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. In August 2012, that court reversed, finding John Doe’s testimony and his asserted intention of someday buying property in Dixie County not credible. The appellate court remanded the case back to the district court to resolve various unexplained inconsistencies in John Doe’s testimony.

Back before the district court, the ACLU vigorously opposed Liberty Counsel’s efforts to take John Doe’s deposition, but the court ordered John Doe to be deposed so that he could account for the inconsistencies in his prior testimony. Rather than provide that explanation, the ACLU has now admitted that John Doe does not plan to buy property in Dixie County and that, therefore, the ACLU lacks standing. The court has entered a final dismissal. The ACLU will have to pay Liberty Counsel $1,300.00 for court costs, on top of more than $2,300.00 it was forced to pay after the appeal.

The private Ten Commandments monument will remain undisturbed.

Liberty Counsel Senior Litigation Counsel Harry Mihet said, “The ACLU got caught with its hands in the constitutional cookie jar. Its prolonged campaign against the good citizens of Dixie County has come to a screeching halt. In getting kicked out of court, the ACLU has learned that it cannot impose its San Francisco values upon a small town in Florida, using a phantom member from North Carolina.”

ABOUT LIBERTY COUNSEL:

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.

Recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) organization, Liberty Counsel is funded by tax-deductible donations from concerned individuals, churches and organizations.

Florida Catholics and Senator Rubio respond to Pope’s retirement

Catholics across the state of Florida are reacting to the unexpected announcement of Pope Benedict XVI retirement. As the world appears to devolve into godlessness as Pat Buchanan noted, the world now awaits the white smoke billowing from the Vatican.

Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Diocese of Venice, issued the following statement regarding resignation of the Holy Father:

The Holy Father’s announcement that he will be resigning on February 28 was a surprise for Catholics around the world. Pope Benedict XVI has been a loyal and active Shepherd for his years as Successor of St. Peter. The Holy Father cited reasons of health and age for his decision. The Diocese of Venice in Florida joins all in continued prayer for the Holy Father. It is my wish to express gratitude for Pope Benedict’s remarkable ministry as the Successor of St. Peter. It is no coincidence that the Holy Father concluded his statement assuring the Church that he will devote his remaining years to “serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.” His writings and teachings have called Catholics to a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ and to help those in need. Particularly during this time, I ask all Catholics in the Diocese of Venice in Florida to join me in prayer for Pope Benedict XVI and for the College of Cardinals as they prepare to convene, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, to elect the next Successor of St. Peter.

Senator Marco Rubio stated, “Pope Benedict XVI displayed the qualities of an excellent leader and a true man of God by putting the interests of the Vatican and the Catholic Church over his own papacy. Since becoming Pope in 2005, Pope Benedict XVI has served the Church honorably, particularly through his work promoting charity across the globe. I wish him well in the future and, as a Catholic, I thank him for his service to God and the Church. I also look with optimism toward the future of the Catholic Church as it prepares to welcome a new leader and as it continues to spread God’s message of faith, hope and love to all the corners of the world.”

While Catholics await the announcement of a new Pope, others are attacking Pope Benedict XVI for his stand on traditional marriage. Rachel Donadio and Elisabetta Povoledo in their New York Times column write, “Saying he had examined his conscience ‘before God,’ Benedict said he felt that he was not up to the challenge of guiding the world’s one billion Catholics. That task will fall to his successor, who will have to contend not only with a Roman Catholic Church marred by the sexual abuse crisis, but also with an increasingly secular Europe and the spread of Protestant evangelical movements in the United States, Latin America and Africa.”

The Sydney Morning Herald’s Ruth Pollard in her column “Palestinian Catholics Wary Of Pope Benedict’s Resignation” reports:

He is viewed as the Pope who helped improve relations between the Vatican and Israel, while also providing open support for the recognition of a Palestinian state. As the news of Pope Benedict’s retirement spread, Palestinian Catholics expressed their shock at his decision and their fears that it may reduce the authority of the church and the next Pope.

“We want the representative of the Holy See to be supportive of the marginalised, of the downtrodden and in this case, the Palestinians who are living under a brutal Israeli occupation,” said Zoughbi Zoughbi, the director of the Wi’am Palestinian Centre for Conflict Resolution.

“Anyone who comes into this position [of pope] has the responsibility of correcting injustices in all four corners of the world,” Mr Zoughbi said as he sat with friends in a café in Bethlehem.

Fertility (Dis)Figure(d) – A view from an American woman in Paris

Column by Nidra Poller (February 2013) an American journalist living in Paris, France. She is reporting on the movement in France to question where it is as a culture.

Fertility (Dis)Figure(d)

Un enfant quand je veux si je veux… The battle cry of the feminists marching for freedom from fertility—“a baby when I want one if I want one”—was ringing out in the streets of Paris when I came to live here in 1972. After lagging behind the United States, where the diaphragm + spermicide had been available to married women since the 1940s and oral contraception since 1957, France caught up with The Pill in 1967 and legalized abortion in 1975, championed by Auschwitz survivor and then Health Minister Simone Veil. The process has gone forward on all fronts, with generalized use of fail-proof methods, unfettered access to abortion when fail-proof fails, reimbursement across the board including, just recently, 100% free contraceptive pills for women 15 to 18.

Contraception and abortion alone could not bring about the desired transformation of the female condition. They were the technology. The metaphysics was what has become known as “gender studies.” In the early days of Women’s Liberation it was makeshift ideology peddled in volumes of look-alike fiction and non-fiction best sellers shouting that maternity was a drag, femininity a hype, sexual differences induced by cynical manipulation, love and marriage an extension of the military industrial complex, and men were chauvinist pigs. No more pink for girls and blue for boys. Sexually marked toys were not abandoned but switched: cars and trucks for girls, dolls and tea sets for boys. Women wanted, or were told they wanted, something called equality.

The harbingers of this “sexual revolution” were, more often than not, closet lesbians. Later we not only discovered that they were lesbians telling heterosexual women to kick their men in the balls and out of their lives, they were also playing stereotypical sexual roles in private, some as simpering mistresses to others more macho than any man could be.

In the space of one generation we went from the prohibition of pre-marital sex to promiscuity for all. The stakes were high for a young woman in the 50s. Sleeping around or, oh horrors, getting pregnant killed her chances of a good marriage… only way to climb the social ladder. Unmarried women could not be fitted for a diaphragm. There was no place to make love decently. When I was an undergraduate at the University of Wisconsin in 1952, female students under 21 were not allowed to live off campus. We were quartered in dorms, with 10 PM curfews. The lower classes and a dissolute bohemian minority did what they wanted and dealt with the consequences as best they could. Decent women waited to discover the pleasures or disappointments of conjugal life. Twenty years later, a young man with nothing to offer and nothing to lose, would mumble his momentary itch; if the chick dared to decline, he’d toss off a whiny “what’s the matter, you got hangups?” before shuffling off to another.

Teenage girls rushed to lose their virginity before getting their first bra. The boys they slept with had a pressing need for freedom. Don’t cramp my style, don’t try to hold on to me, I’m not into commitment. A girl who, for whatever reason, didn’t solve the fertility problem by taking The Pill was too much of a bother. Women were supposed to be liberated… meaning, available 24/24 with no strings attached. Somehow Women’s Liberation turned out to be an emergency exit for men, inclined to run out on their responsibilities and give in to their more shiftless instincts.

Well- educated, professionally accomplished, financially independent women made babies with a male friend or part time lover, with the clear understanding that the woman would assume 100% of the responsibility for raising and providing for the child. Looking back, it’s almost laughable to see how feminine they were! Liberated from drudgery they voluntarily opted for impossible burdens. A woman’s work is never done. Marriage was spurned or diluted by up-front adultery. Lovers and mistresses joined the family for dinner, children’s birthday parties, and family vacations. Wives and husbands moved in and out, and it was no more dramatic than changing seasons.

None of this nullifies the undeniable improvements in the lives of women, our chances for fulfillment in love, marriage, maternity, and a wide range of professions. No longer on the outside looking in, we can see for ourselves how the working world is organized, how power is won and exercised, how many seemingly fascinating jobs are less interesting than, for instance, taking care of babies. Today, young women deserve our help in re-examining the past to reconceive the equilibrium between biology and choice. They have heard enough about what was acquired. What about the losses?

Fertility is formidable. Connecting unbridled fertility to irresistible sexual pleasure is a work of genius. Is it true that primitive people did not make the connection between making love and making babies? Everything has been arranged to make young fertile men and women forget it… until it’s too late. The consequences are enormous. Mouths to feed, and a lifetime of responsibility. Women, until just recently, could be left holding the bag… unless the man voluntarily took his share of the burden and attendant joys. At the same time, women took the blame for sterility. In the understandable wish to get beyond all of that primitive stuff we have, of course, created new problems.

While reassuring women that the advantages of oral contraception outweigh the dangers, the French Health Ministry has issued warnings about 3rd and 4th generation contraceptives after a young woman suffered a debilitating stroke. But these dramatic risks are the visible peak of a throbbing ache that has never been addressed. Women who cannot bear the changes induced by oral contraceptives may be a minority but those who are uncomfortable with the effects associated with artificial hormonal activity are probably a silent majority. How does the body regain the intelligence of reproduction when it has been silenced for years by oral contraception or IUDs?

Fertility is a daunting challenge, a stunning competitor that interferes with our short and long term plans. It should not be treated as an enemy. Granted, we need some control over this magnificent life force that doesn’t exactly go with our current lifestyle. But if we smash it, suppress it, rough it up, and fail to honor it we wake up one day with a problem that few futurists imagined: drastic population decline. Just as a family can wither away and disappear in a few generations, a nation can lose its bid for posterity. We find ourselves with advanced societies collapsing on an upended age pyramid while the under-25 majority of retrograde populations are out in the streets throwing rocks and firebombs or drugging themselves on heroin and despair.

And then there is AIDS. Super safe birth control that theoretically allows for super carefree pleasure notwithstanding, the clumsy old condom was brought back into service.

Once and for all defined as progress, women’s liberation is stubbornly entrenched. Thinking women, happy to be involved in board meetings, business travel, financial transactions, and research projects, have pocketed the progress and ignored the twisted paths that take us away from our destination. The fine arts and literature, seemingly locked into the hysterical phase, do little to help women conserve or recover the delicate skills that help us nurture the masculinity of men. Women have used more clout to get the right to drive buses, work on automobile assembly lines and now, in the US, go into combat than to improve the balance between work, maternity, and child care.

We keep getting hit with the downside of our miracle solutions. For example, the two-for-one baby boom. I am not qualified to say whether the proliferation of twins is due to post-contraception sterility, pre-menopausal maternity or new techniques of assisted procreation, but it is troubling when every third stroller you pass on the street is a double. First, contraception has to be 99.9% reliable for women at the peak of fertility, then medical genius has to compensate for damaged fertility… there is a time for everything but who knows what time it is?

Un enfant quand je veux comme je veux. The motor of Progress must not idle. Having established the religion of free love, liberated women from the disgusting femininity-maternity couplet, placed abortion on the same level of noblesse as procreation, demanded parity everywhere from floor sweepers to CEOs, purified language of the despicable undifferentiated masculine collective, the battalions of Progress are back on the front lines and their battle cry is “A child when I want how I want.” Are homosexuals the latter day saints of love marriage and procreation? The issue of same-sex marriage is currently debated in the French legislature. Debate is a euphemism for the arrogant steamroller of the left wing majority, reveling in a no holds barred shouting match against the opposition. Deaf to the outcry of a huge segment of the population, indifferent to reasoned argument, secure in the certainty that President Hollande will not put the question to a popular referendum, the majority is having a ball.

The bill, in an inimitable French lace formulation, is called “mariage pour tous [marriage for everyone]. It actually means “marriage for no one,” in that the institution will be gutted and the shell decorated with garlands of flowers. Lurking behind this mariage nouveau is a devious plan for “procreation without biological borders.” With imperial disdain, a government, elected with a modest majority is dismantling the basic building block of society. Long stretches of the proceedings at the National Assembly are broadcast live on our equivalent of C-Span. Dozens of mini-Robespierres grab the microphone as if it were a whip and lash out at the Opposition, accused of homophobia, retrogradia, and obstruction of the wheels of History. Following the lead of Justice Minister Christiane Taubira, whose corn rows are meant to be an argument in themselves, deputies alternate revolutionary thunder with cooing over kitschy homosexual weddings with all the trimmings and heartfelt pleas for the children (hundreds? thousands? who knows?) who will finally bathe in the crowning glory of marriage for their homoparents.

Indulgent media visit the happy homes of happy homosexuals with their happy broods. No complaints from these child soldiers. Daddy plus Daddy makes a house a home. And aren’t two mothers better than one? Who are the dastardly reactionaries that would deprive innocent children of the dignity of married homoparenthood? How dare they insinuate that same sex parents are not as good if not better than heterosexuals? Who are they to say that marriage is the union of a man and a woman intending to make a family? Homosexuals deserve the same rights to marry and found a family as heterosexuals!

The opposition claims “mariage pour tous” is a Trojan horse: procreation-booster rights will inevitably follow the same-sex marriage & adoption bill. In fact, MAP (medically assisted procreation) for lesbian partners, included in an earlier draft of the bill, was withdrawn due to opposition within the majority party and the French electorate. It will eventually be tacked on to a family affairs bill initially promised for March, now postponed to October, pending—but not depending on—the recommendations of the Bioethical commission. Opposition deputies predict that males will demand and obtain, on the grounds of equality, legalization of surrogate motherhood. The majority cries Foul! You don’t want same-sex marriage so you drag in unrelated issues. False, shouts the opposition, and the memorandum shows what’s up your sleeve. For some reason the Justice Minister issued a memorandum last week notifying consular officials that recourse to surrogate motherhood– a criminal offense under French law– is not in and of itself grounds for refusal to naturalize the child.

Once these fait accompli children are brought to France, the father(s) will demand official filiation. Does the wish to have children–against the implacable laws of nature–justify cheating? Other subterfuges are detailed in a chuckling article in Le Monde.1 One member of a lesbian union hides all evidence of her partner during the adoption procedure. Then the two women raise the adopted child together… until they separate. The once-hidden partner now fears her ties to the child might be broken. Karim was the odd man out when his partner Yann fertilized a Ukrainian woman, but today they live happily with their five year-old twins in a remote village where friendly neighbors are satisfied to learn that that both men are “papas d’intention” [daddies by intention] of the children born via a “maman de naissance” [birth mommy]. Yann doesn’t like the term “maman porteuse” [carrying mommy]; it sounds too industrial. He says there’s nothing inspiring about the biological bond. “The act itself is shabby– masturbating into a test tube–and the consequences are a monstrosity.” I assume he means the pregnancy.
Members of the left wing parliamentary majority, infuriated by the Trojan horse argument of the opposition, cannot in fact justify the same-sex marriage juggernaut without the hidden procreative project. Back in 1999, their predecessors promised that the PACS [contract of civil solidarity], tailored to the needs of homosexuals, was the last and final stage. No marriage, no adoption, no procreation, no filiation. Of 142,738 contracts signed in 2012, 3,680 were male-male, 3,064 female-female, and 135,994 male-female. Did homosexuals shun the PACS because it was beneath them or because they weren’t really interested in forming more perfect unions? And what if a tiny minority of a tiny minority will actually take advantage of same-sex marriage? How can that justify the slapdash, sloppy, ill-considered, unjustified dismantling of marriage and filiation?

Can the impossibility of making children without a male and a female participant be solved by same-sex marriage, MAP, and surrogate motherhood? Isn’t it a way of forcing the children born under these circumstances to perpetuate the myth of homoparenthood? Neither our respect for homosexual friends and family nor individual examples of wonderful children raised by same-sex partners can resolve this dilemma. The question is what shall society encourage, allow, condone, facilitate, tolerate, forbid or punish.

The idea that a child needs a mother and a father is suddenly labeled reactionary! One might as well burn all the world’s literature and retool humanity into heartless robots. Who can deny the suffering of a child who loses a mother or a father by illness, accident, abandonment or divorce? Proponents of mariage pour tous claim the opposition is motivated by base prejudice against equality in marriage, while they stubbornly deny the inequality imposed on the children brought into the world via this misconception. An infant doesn’t need to be cradled against a mother’s breast and held in strong male arms? The orchestration of contrasting male-female sensations–muscles, odor, voice, rhythm, mentality– is a vital need for children. It has nothing to do with socially-imposed stereotypes; it is a corollary of the ineluctable reality that reproduction is only possible when a female ovule is fertilized by male sperm.

Advocates of same-sex marriage portray homosexuals as innocent victims of discrimination; there is nothing intrinsically distressing about their biologically sterile sexuality. Evil lies in the eyes of the beholder. End the social disapproval, costume homosexuals in bridal attire, and let them get on with their normal lives. The reality is far more complex. Honest acceptance of homosexuals does not exclude a guts rejection of their sexuality. In your face lurid gay pride, smoldering hostility to heterosexuals, coteries and rainbow flag nationalism can’t be ignored. The slogan on a banner carried in a Mariage pour Tous demonstration — “Une paire de meres est mieux qu’un père de merde” [a pair of mothers is better than a shitty father]—reminds us of the 70s: “A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.” When homosexuality was a disgrace, many hid their shame in heterosexual marriage; when coming out was in style, homosexuality was worn as a badge of honor. Many of the children raised in same-sex households today were born of heterosexual marriages that ended when one of the partners discovered his or her homosexuality. Children should not be dragged like rag dolls into these complications.

At a time when half the children born in France are technically out of wedlock, why would homosexuals be dying to get married? Why not create an institution that is truly adapted to their difference? No. If we don’t give them our marriage and turn ourselves into fish farms to provide them with progeny, we’re selfish reactionaries. Same-sex marriage, we are promised, will subtract nothing from marriage; it is the simple addition of one unjustly excluded category of citizens to the existing cohort. Though the opposition doesn’t have the votes to defeat the mariage pour tous bill, the National Assembly debate has the merit of casting light on its hidden consequences. The “simple” addition of same-sex unions nullifies marriage, makes spaghetti of filiation, axes the patronym, betrays the biological facts of procreation by deleting their representation in law and language, and dumps centuries of continuity into muddy confusion. The nation is sterilized. Justice Minister Taubira pours an acid smile on opposition deputies who object to some 200 radiations of the words (and the concept) “father and mother” from the Code Civil. Voyons, messieurs, it’s replaced by “parents.”(“Parents” means parents or relatives.) And what’s wrong with replacing “mari” and “femme” by the unisex “époux.”

The government and its majority are now spelling opposition “o-b-s-t-r-u-c-t-i-o-n.” No one must stand in the way of the forward march of History. Or should it be called Itstory?

We have reached the endpoint of a package of social changes that began in the sixties. Instead of reexamining the premises and consequences, today’s activists want to take us over the cliff. Before we can help our homosexual citizens, we have to ask ourselves why the femininity decried in women is acceptable when parodied by men. Why men were male chauvinist pigs but macho women can simultaneously be husbands to their female partners and mothers to “their” children. Why is everything organized so that young women at the most propitious time for childbearing use overwhelming contraception while women in their forties and same sex partners resort to every possible stratagem to have children?

And how can we maintain the prohibition against incest when Johnny Appleseed donors are spreading their sperm to the winds with no return address?

ABOUT NIDRA POLLER:

Nidra Poller is an American writer and translator who has lived in Paris since 1972. She has contributed to English-language publications such as The Wall Street Journal, National Review, FrontPage Magazine, and The New York Sun.

Poller has been described as a novelist, author of illustrated books for youth, and also a translator, notably of the philosopher, Emmanuel Levinas. Her writings include observations on society and politics, including the Muhammad al-Durrah incident and the Ilan Halimi trial.

Rubio Tweets “There is only one savior, and it is not me. #Jesus”

Senator Marco Rubio took offense at the Times cover title “The Republican Savior”. In response he tweeted “There is only one savior, and it is not me. #Jesus”.

rubio time magazine cover

The TIME magazine column “Immigrant Son” by Michael Grunwald notes, “But while Rubio is a child of immigrants, he’s also a child of the conservative movement, an ambitious ideologue and former political operative who speaks partisan Republican with the fluency of a native. (Romney, by contrast, spoke it as a second language.) Like Paul Ryan, a potential 2016 rival, he’s part of a new generation of lean and hungry conservatives who grew up in the anti-government Reagan era and entered politics after the scorched-earth Gingrich revolution. Bipartisan compromise is not usually his thing.” To read the entire TIME magazine story click here.

There are questions being raised about the future of America and the role partisan politics plays in creating a country divided. At a recent TEA Party Sarasota meeting one member stated, “the political parties were merely two squads on the same team”. Big government, more regulation and higher taxes have been embraced by both Republicans and Democrats. This has led to crushing debt, unfettered spending and more government control.

Can any one politician actually make a different when the party system works against any change or reform?

We will see if Rubio will remain independent in his actions or will become part of his party’s leadership. Will political power trump his moral compass as he becomes the “new voice” of the Republican party?

Early civilizations were well aware of the danger of pride and power and knew that this could destroy kings and empires if not held in check. And thus a philosophy was developed by the very wise Greco-Roman philosophers (lovers of truth) in order to help their rulers and themselves to be vigilant about their behavior, lest they destroy themselves by pride. And thus when any great general (be it an emperor-to-be, a war general, or any victor of a great battle) was honored by a great manifestation such as a triumphal entry into his city-state, a slave (a lowly of lowlies) would ride in the chariot with him and whisper in his ear that he should remember that “he is not a god, but a mortal human being”.

A lesson that all politicians must learn?

Media double standard fails women and democracy

By , President of the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity

This past election cycle, the mainstream media promoted the idea that the GOP engages in a “war on women.” Prominent women in the Democratic Party were able to take to the airways –often unchallenged – and spin the Republican positions on social issues as old-fashioned, sexist attitudes reminiscence of the 1950s. With the 2012 election a distant memory – the danger is real: sexploitation has reared its ugly head. The alleged culprit is a Democratic senator, and the legacy press couldn’t be more silent.

Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) is embroiled in scandal. But if you read the New York Times or watch “NBC Nightly News,” you would never know it. Reports began surfacing last November from new media outlets – led by the Daily Caller – the New Jersey senator was allegedly engaging in sex with prostitutes in the Dominican Republic, courtesy of the transportation and resort hospitality of a major campaign donor. The original Daily Caller investigation included an interview with two women from the Dominican Republic who told DC “they met Menendez around Easter at Casa de Campo, an expensive 7,000-acre resort in the Dominican Republic. They claimed Menendez agreed to pay them $500 for sex acts, but in the end they each received only $100.”

Given the fact that these young ladies are engaged in an activity regarded as the ultimate degradation of women – and a sitting U.S. senator has been accused of taking advantage of their circumstances – it’s safe to say the old guard press would have been all over this story if the perpetrator were a Republican – leaving no stone un-turned to find the “Dirty Laundry” – as Sen. Menendez gets whitewashed in the spin cycle.  Enter the new media outlets – turning the tide, agitating the establishment and hanging them out to dry.

The evidence against Menendez began mounting last week as it was revealed that another woman had come forward. The non-partisan government watchdog organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) received an email from another young girl from the Dominican Republic, claiming she had slept with the New Jersey Democrat. All the more troubling is that her alleged sexual encounters began when she was only sixteen years old.

Where is the outrage from women’s rights groups? Where are the demands for answers from the 16 female Democrats serving alongside Menendez in the Senate? Why do the mainstream media remain silent over the accusations?

In America one is presumed innocent until proven guilty. So when serious allegations surface, especially when they come from more than one source, the press has an obligation to investigate the matter. In a Sunday, January 27th interview on ABC’s “This Week,” not one question was asked of Menendez about the prostitutes’ allegations, despite the fact that two days earlier it had become public that the FBI was investigating the senator’s alleged misconduct. The sources are credible enough for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, but apparently not for the old guard press.

Menendez’s reputed fondness for hookers is only part of the story not being covered. Last week the senator’s contributor involved in this scandal had his office raided by the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General. Florida ophthalmologist   Salomon Melgen has been flying Menendez down to the Dominican Republic, providing the luxury accommodations and supposedly supplying the ladies of the night. The raid on Melgen’s office apparently jarred the memory of the New Jersey senator who ponied up nearly $59,000 to reimburse the Florida doctor for travel expenses incurred in 2009.

If the emails, FBI investigation and government raids aren’t enough red flags for the press, an investigation by the new media publication The Washington Free Beacon uncovered last November that Dr. Melgen owes over $11 million to the IRS. Melgen’s support for Menendez began during the 1990s when he was a congressman. Since Dr. Melgen’s troubles with the IRS began – his contributions to the New Jersey Democrat have dramatically increased.

Coincidence? Or a prominent political donor seeking favors? Unless the question is asked, we won’t know the answer.

Since the FBI investigation became public, a few local newspapers in New Jersey, New York and Miami have taken an interest. But a “Google search” of the scandal links only to new media outlets. The three broadcasts networks have wiped the scandal under the rug and the New York Times has apparently decided the story doesn’t fit their motto, “All the News That’s Fit to Print.”

Safe to say that if Sen. Menendez had an “R” next to his name this story would lead network broadcasts and frequent the front-page of the “paper of record.” But when you are a Democrat the legacy media and women’s rights group tend to bury their head in the sand – justice and journalism doesn’t fit their agenda.

Jason Stverak is the President of Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity.