VIDEO: America With God or America Without God? A Warning to Every Citizen!

Tom Trento is one of the leading academic activists in the United States. He appeared at the America – The Truth conference in Sarasota, Florida. He discussed what it would be like to have an America with God and an America without God.

Here are his two presentations, each is a must watch for those concerned about the moral compass of America. Given the growing revelations of sexual misconduct and abuse by a wide variety of individuals of all parties his comments are prophetic.

America With God:

America Without God:

ABOUT TOM TRENTO

A highly skilled debater and dynamic public speaker, exposing the radical agenda of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mr. Trento has degrees in Law Enforcement, Philosophy and Theology. In his extensive travels throughout the United States and Europe, his lectures have exposed Islamic violence and infiltration in government, law enforcement and academic institutions. He is one of the co-authors of Shariah: The Threat to America and appears frequently on major media outlets and talk shows as an authority on Islamic ideology. Mr. Trento’s web site may be viewed at TheUnitedWest.org.

GOP Lawmakers Press for Investigation of FBI’s ‘Special Treatment’ of Hillary Clinton Probe [+Video]

Conservatives are calling for an investigation of what they say was the FBI’s “special treatment” of Hillary Clinton ahead of the Dec. 7 testimony of FBI Director Christopher Wray before the House Judiciary Committee.

“I am proud to be joined by my fellow conservatives in the House to call for an investigation into the FBI’s procedures that allowed Hillary Clinton to receive special treatment,” Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., said at a press conference Wednesday. “We’ll also investigate the unprecedented bias against President [Donald] Trump that exists when we allow people who hate the president to participate in the investigations against him.”

Gaetz, who was joined at the press conference by Reps. Jody Hice, R-Ga.; Jim Jordan, R-Ohio; Andy Biggs, R-Ariz.; Scott Perry, R-Pa.; and Mark Meadows, R-N.C., called for an investigation into the FBI’s treatment of Clinton’s email use. The FBI investigation was deemed as “special,” according to FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

“Each day, we learn more information that reflects the double standard that, unfortunately, seems to be pervasive at the FBI and at the Department of Justice,” Gaetz said. A “small team” at FBI headquarters was assigned to conduct the Clinton investigation, according to emails released from McCabe, he noted.

On Nov. 15, documents were released that show McCabe “wrote an email on his official government account stating that the Hillary Clinton email probe had been given ‘special’ status,” The Hill reported.

During Clinton’s tenure at the State Department from 2009 to 2013, she used a private email account and server while conducting State Department business.

“For me, this question is why,” Perry said at the press conference. “Why are there two different standards of justice? Why doesn’t the FBI and the Justice Department have to comply with subpoenas by the Congress for information that the American people need to have and should have and should have access to? Why is that happening?”

Hice said justice has not been impartial toward Clinton.

“This is all about, ultimately, whether or not Lady Justice is still blindfolded, and whether or not she is peeking out from underneath to show favoritism with certain individuals,” the Georgia lawmaker said. “The more we hear about how the FBI handled the investigations involving Hillary Clinton, the more we understand that she received special treatment, and that is unacceptable.”

From then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch secretly meeting with former President Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac on June 27, 2016, to the description of how Hillary Clinton handled classified information being downgraded from “grossly negligent” to “extremely careless,” Hice said, there are many questions with no answers.

“[T]he FBI’s process and procedures that allow this type of activity to occur must come to an end. We must have justice at this point, and at the same time, we must make sure that this type of favoritism never occurs again,” he said.

Additional concerns of the lawmakers are outlined in a letter, dated Nov. 28, to Wray signed by Gaetz, along with Biggs and Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas. Those concerns include questions with respect to why then-FBI Director James Comey moved Clinton’s investigation from the FBI’s Washington field office to a “small team,” and why Lynch asked Comey to refer to Clinton’s case as a “matter,” rather than an “investigation.”

Meadows, the chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, called on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to get involved in the investigation.

“It is time that we get to the bottom of it, and I call on Attorney General Sessions. It is time for him to show the type of leadership to make sure the American people get the answers they deserve, because we can not allow the highest law enforcement agency in the land to actually be in a situation where they allow partisanship to determine who is actually not only guilty or innocent, but certainly we can’t allow it to happen when indeed it should be a nonpartisan, nonbiased way,” Meadows said.

Lawmakers say they want answers from Wray, who will be testifying before the House Judiciary Committee for the first time as FBI chief on Thursday.

“Tomorrow, FBI Director Christopher Wray will testify before the Judiciary Committee, and we want answers as to how we can reform our systems and practices, so that no one gets special treatment and no one is subjected to any special bias,” Gaetz said.

WATCH LIVE: FBI Director Wray testifies before House Judiciary Committee on Russia investigation.

COMMENTARY BY:

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.

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.

SUPPORT THE DAILY SIGNAL

PODCAST: The Left’s Double Standard on Sexual Misconduct

Are the Democrats hypocrites when it comes to politicians accused of sexual misconduct? We discuss that, as well as the Palestinian uproar over President Trump announcing move of the U.S. Embassy to Israel, and the universities trying to ban Christmas.

COMMENTARY BY:

Portrait of Katrina Trinko

Katrina Trinko

Katrina Trinko is managing editor of The Daily Signal and a member of USA Today’s Board of Contributors. Send an email to Katrina. Twitter: @KatrinaTrinko.

Portrait of Daniel Davis

Daniel Davis

Daniel Davis is the commentary editor of The Daily Signal. Twitter: @JDaniel_Davis.

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.

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.

4 Highlights From Christian Baker’s Wedding Cake Case at Supreme Court

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Tuesday [November 5, 2017] in a closely watched case dealing with free speech, religious liberty, and same-sex marriage.

Specifically, the justices considered whether the state of Colorado can force Jack Phillips, a Christian baker, to create a custom cake for a same-sex wedding against his deeply held religious beliefs.

Attorneys for Phillips clearly explained that he seeks to exercise his freedom only to speak messages that he agrees with, while still welcoming all customers into his store. The First Amendment’s free speech and religious liberty clauses protect his freedoms to do just that.

In a lengthy and charged oral argument, the nine justices wrestled with how Americans who hold different views on marriage in our post-Obergefell society can continue to live with each other in mutual respect.

Here are some highlights of the argument.

1. Mutual Tolerance Is Essential in a Free Society

In one of the most charged exchanges of the day, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy questioned Colorado Solicitor General Frederick Yarger about whether a member of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission who compared Phillips to a racist and a Nazi demonstrated anti-religious bias—and that, if he did so, whether the judgment against Masterpiece should stand.

After disavowing the commissioner’s comments, Yarger argued that the ruling should still stand. But Kennedy returned to the issue again, telling Yarger that “tolerance is essential in a free society. And tolerance is most meaningful when it’s mutual. It seems to me that the state in its position here has been neither tolerant nor respectful of Mr. Phillips’ religious beliefs.”

Kennedy also pointed out there were other cake shops that would have accommodated Charlie Craig and David Mullins, the same-sex couple who requested a cake for their wedding.

In a similar line of questioning, Justice Samuel Alito pointed out that the state of Colorado had failed to demonstrate mutual tolerance when it only protected the freedom of cake artists who landed on one side of the gay marriage debate—namely, the state’s side.

When three religious customers went to cake artists to request cakes that were critical of same-sex marriage, those cake artists declined—yet Colorado did not apply its anti-discrimination statute to punish the artists. But when Phillips declined to create a cake to celebrate a same-sex marriage, Colorado imposed a three-pronged penalty that drove him out of the wedding cake business, causing him to lose 40 percent of his business.

2. Compelled Speech for Everyone

The irony of the comparison of Phillips to a Nazi is that both the ACLU lawyer representing the gay couple (David Cole) and the Colorado solicitor general admitted the state could rightfully force cake artists to celebrate the racist ideals of white supremacy, or one of the most infamous events in world history, the Holocaust.

At one point, Justice Stephen Breyer followed up on a question from Justice Neil Gorsuch about whether a cake artist could be forced to create a cross-shaped cake for a religious group that shared the beliefs of the KKK. Cole responded that if the cake artist did so for the Red Cross, then yes, the artist would have to do so for the religious group as well.

Similarly, Justice Samuel Alito asked Colorado if a cake artist who created a cake with words celebrating Nov. 9 for someone’s anniversary could also be forced to create the same cake to celebrate Nov. 9, 1938.

On that infamous night, known as “Kristallnacht,” the Nazis launched their pogrom against Jews by burning over 1,000 synagogues and damaging more than 7,000 Jewish businesses.

In the exchange with Alito, the Colorado solicitor general said that cake artists could not discriminate on the basis of identity, but could discriminate on the basis of messages. Gorsuch later responded, saying that’s exactly what Phillips has argued.

Kristen Waggoner of Alliance Defending Freedom argued Jack Phillips’ case before the Supreme Court. (Photo: Jeff Malet/The Heritage Foundation)

3. Disagreement Does Not Equal Discrimination

Kennedy also challenged Colorado and the ACLU on their argument that Phillips discriminates on the basis of identity, rather than his idea of what constitutes a marriage. In an exchange with the ACLU attorney, Kennedy called the repeated attempts to characterize Phillips as discriminating on the basis of identity “too facile.”

During the oral arguments, the court appeared to recognize what is patently obvious from the facts. Phillips welcomes all people into his store, encourages them to buy off-the-shelf items, and will make custom-designed cakes for them provided they don’t ask for items that violate his beliefs.

He has served gays for the 24 years his store has been in operation and welcomes their business to this day. He does not discriminate against anybody because of their identity.

So comparisons to shopkeepers in the Jim Crow South who sought to keep the races “separate but equal” are a smear that divert attention from the real issue: Phillips simply disagrees with the state on the issue of marriage.

Roberts appeared to recognize this when chiding the ACLU for lumping in supporters of traditional marriage with racists, noting that in Obergefell, the court had said support for traditional marriage is rooted in “decent and honorable” premises.

Jennifer Marshall of The Heritage Foundation holds a sign outside the Supreme Court. (Photo: Jeff Malet/The Heritage Foundation)

4. Orthodoxy Determined by the State

Finally, the oral arguments revealed the scope of how far the state of Colorado is willing to go to impose its views of marriage on citizens. In one line of questioning from Roberts, Colorado admitted that it would force Catholic Legal Services to provide a same-sex couple with legal services related to their wedding even if it violates Catholic teachings on marriage.

And in questioning from Alito, the ACLU answered that the state could force a Christian college whose creed opposes same-sex marriage to perform a same-sex wedding in its chapel.

Like many Americans, Phillips seeks to work in a manner consistent with his deeply held religious beliefs, including on marriage. In order to follow his conscience, he has turned down requests for cakes that contain messages expressing certain ideas: Halloween and divorce, anti-American themes, and even anti-gay messages.

What he has never done is turn away anyone because of who they are.

The Supreme Court should uphold the rights of all Americans to work according to their religious beliefs and to be free from government intrusion that would force them to speak messages in violation of their deeply held beliefs.

After its decision in Roe v. Wade, the court respected the freedoms of Americans on both sides of the abortion debate. It rejected the argument that opposition to abortion is rooted in animus toward women because it recognized that there are many other rational reasons why people oppose abortion.

This is no different. There are many Americans who support traditional marriage for reasons that have nothing to do with animus toward gays. All Americans will benefit when free speech and religious liberty are robustly protected.

The court’s decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop can help foster more civil dialogue on marriage so that we can all live according to our consciences and in peace with one another.

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Emilie Kao

Emilie Kao is director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation. Twitter: .

RELATED ARTICLE: Wedding Cake Baker’s Backers Say Fight Is for Everyone’s First Amendment Rights, Not Just His

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.

DACA Is Not What the Democrats Say It Is. Here Are the Facts.

Some members of Congress are threatening to block government funding unless Congress provides amnesty to so-called Dreamers—the illegal aliens included in President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which President Donald Trump is ending.

Responsible members of Congress should not give in.

Such an effort would be fundamentally flawed and would only encourage even more illegal immigration—just as the 1986 amnesty in the Immigration Reform and Control Act did.

Democrats portray the DACA program as only benefiting those who were a few years old when they came to the U.S. illegally, leaving them unable to speak their native language and ignorant of their countries’ cultural norms. Therefore, the reasoning goes, it would be a hardship to return them to the countries where they were born.

Obama himself gave this rationale when he said DACA beneficiaries were “brought to this country by their parents” as infants and face “deportation to a country that [they] know nothing about, with a language” they don’t even speak.

While this may be true of a small portion of the DACA population, it certainly is not true of all of the aliens who received administrative amnesty. In fact, illegal aliens were eligible as long as they came to the U.S. before their 16th birthday and were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.

DACA also required that beneficiaries enroll in school, graduate from high school, obtain a GED certificate, or receive an honorable discharge from the military; have no conviction for a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors; and not pose a threat to national security or public safety.

However, the Obama administration appeared to routinely waive the education (or its equivalent) requirement as long as the illegal alien was enrolled in some kind of program. Only 49 percent of DACA beneficiaries have a high school education—despite the fact that a majority of them are adults.

How thorough was Homeland Security vetting? In February 2017, after the arrest of a DACA beneficiary for gang membership, the Department of Homeland Security admitted that at least 1,500 DACA beneficiaries had their eligibility terminated “due to a criminal conviction, gang affiliation, or a criminal conviction related to gang affiliation.”

By August 2017, that number had surged to 2,139.

In fact, based on documents obtained by Judicial Watch, it is apparent that the Obama administration used a “lean and light” system of background checks in which only a few, randomly selected DACA applicants were ever actually vetted.

Additionally, DACA only excluded individuals for convictions. Thus, even if a Homeland Security background investigation—which apparently was almost never done—produced substantial evidence that an illegal alien might have committed multiple crimes, the alien would still be eligible for DACA unless Homeland Security referred the violation to state or federal prosecutors and the alien was convicted.

DACA had no requirement of English fluency either. In fact, the original application requested applicants to answer whether the form had been “read” to the alien by a translator “in a language in which [the applicant is] fluent.”

The Center for Immigration Studies estimates that “perhaps 24 percent of the DACA-eligible population fall into the functionally illiterate category and another 46 percent have only ‘basic’ English ability.”

This is a far cry from the image of DACA beneficiaries as all children who don’t speak the language of—and know nothing about the culture of—their native countries.

In fact, it seems rather that a significant percentage of DACA beneficiaries may have serious limitations in their education, experience, and English fluency that negatively affected their ability to function in American society.

Providing amnesty to low-skilled, low-educated aliens with marginal English language ability would impose large fiscal costs on American taxpayers resulting from increased government payouts and benefits, and would be unfair to legal immigrants who obeyed the law to come here.

Any congressional amnesty bill providing citizenship for DACA beneficiaries could significantly increase the number of illegal aliens who will benefit unless Congress amends the sponsorship rules under federal immigration law. Providing lawful status to millions of so-called “Dreamers” will allow the extended families of those aliens to profit from illegal conduct.

The U.S. accepts about a million legal immigrants every year. According to a recent study, of the 33 million legal immigrants admitted over the last 35 years, about 61 percent were chain migration immigrants.

The average immigrant has sponsored 3.45 additional immigrants, but for DACA beneficiaries, that number is likely to be much higher. This is because, according to an analysis by the Department of Homeland Security, 76 percent of the DACA beneficiaries were from Mexico. Mexican immigrants sponsor an average of 6.38 additional legal immigrants—the highest rate of any nationality for chain migration.

Providing amnesty would simply attract even more illegal immigration and would not solve the myriad of enforcement problems we have along our borders and in the interior of the country. Congress should concentrate on giving the federal government (with the assistance and help of state and local governments) the resources to enforce existing immigration laws to reduce the illegal alien population in the U.S. and stem entry into the country.

Until those goals are accomplished, it is premature to even consider any DACA-type bill.

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Hans von Spakovsky

Hans von Spakovsky is an authority on a wide range of issues—including civil rights, civil justice, the First Amendment, immigration, the rule of law and government reform—as a senior legal fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies and manager of the think tank’s Election Law Reform Initiative. Read his research. Twitter: .

RELATED ARTICLES:

Why Congress Should Not Legalize DACA: The Myths Surrounding the Program

Podcast: Liberal Rhetoric on DACA vs. Reality

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.

SUPPORT THE DAILY SIGNAL

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of New Mexico Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham who is a prominent Democrat pushing for a DACA-style amnesty deal. (Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Newscom)

“The Dictator Pope”

Note: This is an all too brief account of a remarkable new book on the pope, which is causing waves in Rome and around the world. Fr. Gerald Murray, Raymond Arroyo, and I will discuss this and other matters in greater detail tomorrow evening on EWTN’s “The World Over,” 8 PM East Coast time (Check local listings for rebroadcasts and postings on YouTube). We began our year-end funding drive on November 8, and I’d like to end it this Friday, December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. You’ve already heard more than enough on this from me. There’s still time to click the button. Just do it and do your bit for The Catholic Thing– Robert Royal

The title above is the name of a book that appeared Monday in English (after earlier publication in Italian) by a writer who has assumed a grand Renaissance pseudonym: Marcantonio Colonna (an admiral at Lepanto). He evidently could not publish under his real name, for fear of reprisals. But the case he lays out is largely convincing: that Pope Francis has carefully cultivated an image in public as the apostle of mercy, kindness, and openness; in private, he’s authoritarian, given to profanity-laced outbursts of anger, and manipulative in pursuing his agenda.

This is hardly news, least of all in Rome. This volume, however, is far more probing and detailed than anything that has previously appeared. It sometimes stretches evidence, but the sheer amount of evidence it provides is stunning. About 90 percent of it is simply incontrovertible, and cannot help but clarify who Francis is and what he’s about.

The parts of this story I know best – the Synods on the family that I reported on daily from Rome for TCT – are absolutely reliable. We know, for example, that Pope Francis was quite willing to openly manipulate the Synods by personally appointing supporters of the Kasper Proposal and that he even intervened personally at key points, changing procedures and instructing the bishops about where their deliberations should start – and end.

When Francis cares about something – as Colonna shows – he makes it happen, whatever the opposition (at the Synods, it was considerable). There’s a clear pattern of behavior, whatever uncertainties remain. On the divorced and remarried, the environment, immigrants, “Islamophobia,” the poor, the pope is relentless. But he was not elected to revolutionize marital doctrine or “discipline.” Nor was he chosen to be a player in international politics. He was elected to be a “reformer” who would mainly clean up Vatican finances and deal with the gay lobby, two things that played a role in Benedict’s resignation.

On the financial front, there was a strong start: The council of cardinals, Cardinal Pell’s effort to inject Anglo-Saxon transparency, a new special secretariat on the economy, hiring PriceWaterhouseCoopers to do an external audit. The momentum stalled as the old guard slowly regained control over Vatican finances – and oversight. A series of Vatican Bank presidents, officials, accountants, etc. – probably getting too close to the truth – have been fired without good explanations. (Something similar played out in the Knights of Malta controversy.) Pell had to return to Australia to deal with sexual abuse charges from forty years ago that, suspiciously, resurfaced after being earlier examined and dismissed.

And where was the pope during all of this? He didn’t seem very interested. If he had been, he’d be at least as dogged in dealing with financial reform as he is, say, about global warming. Austen Ivereigh, a British writer and papal fan, entitled his biography The Great Reformer, in part because of Jorge Bergoglio’s alleged role in curbing abuses in Buenos Aires. Colonna doubts the truth of that account, and not only because of Francis’s lack of action in Rome. He thinks the Argentinian stories should be re-examined.

Then there’s the gay mafia. People forget that the occasion for Francis’ famous remark “Who am I to judge?” was not a general comment about homosexuality. It was in response to a question about Msgr. Battista Ricca, who was involved in several notorious homosexual scandals, some right across the river from Buenos Aires in Uruguay. Nonetheless, right after the 2013 papal election, he became the pope’s “eyes and ears” at the Vatican Bank and director of the Casa Santa Marta, where Francis resides.

And then there’s the troubling, casual resurrection of figures like Cardinal Gottfried Daneels, once thoroughly discredited for his support for contraception, divorce, gay marriage, even euthanasia and abortion – and outrageous mishandling of priestly abuse. But he stood with Francis on the balcony of St. Peter’s right after the conclave and read the prayer for the new pope at his inauguration. He was also one of the ringers Francis personally invited to bolster his case at the Synods.

Then there’s the appointment of another radical, Archbishop Paglia, to head the “reformed” John Paul II Institute on Marriage and the Family. In a remarkably naked authoritarian move, the pope substituted himself for Cardinal Sarah for the institute’s opening academic address in 2016, and spoke of “a far too abstract and almost artificial theological ideal of marriage.” You have to believe that Cardinal Marx was expressing the truth when he said, at the end of the synods, that it was just the beginning.

The least satisfactory part of this book for me is the account of how the “St. Gallen Group” – one of its own members called it a “mafia” – which met to plan opposition to St. JPII and Joseph Ratzinger, identified Jorge Bergoglio as a future papal candidate. He had no global visibility until he gave the concluding address at the 2001 Synod on the role of bishops. NYC’s Cardinal Edward Egan was supposed to do that but stayed home because 9/11 had just happened. The address impressed the synod fathers for its fairness to both sides. Colonna reveals, however, that it was entirely the work of a Synod secretary/speechwriter, Msgr. Daniel Emilio Estivill. We need to know more about how things went, from then to now.

Colonna also weakens his credibility somewhat by repeating rumors that Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin convinced Francis to use money from Peter’s Pence to support Hilary Clinton’s presidential campaign. No footnotes appear to support this claim, nor does Colonna offer a plausible account of how and why Rome would think Mrs. Clinton – Hilary Clinton? – worth such a risky bet and potential scandal.

Despite a few lapses, the most disturbing element remains: the abundant evidence – confirmed by many particular instances now over years of this papacy – that the pope has little use for established procedures, precedents, even legal structures within the Church. These are not mere trivial rules, Pharisaic legalism, resistance to the Holy Spirit, etc. They are the means by which the Church seeks to be clear, fair, and orderly – and to address unjust actions or abuses by those in power.

When the head of the Church himself does not much feel bound by the tradition or impartial laws he has inherited, what then? That the question even has to be asked is disturbing. Any answer will have to reckon with the eye-opening material in this compelling book.

Robert Royal

Robert Royal

Robert Royal is editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing, and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. His most recent book is A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century, published by Ignatius Press. The God That Did Not Fail: How Religion Built and Sustains the West, is now available in paperback from Encounter Books.

EDITORS NOTE: © 2017 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.

Collapse of the Liberal House Of Cards — Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Have you noticed how out of touch politicians, Hollywood actors and actresses, NFL athletes and certain TV commentators are with the American people? Are you noticing that the rhetoric coming out of their mouths is more and more desperate and just plain untrue?

Tom Hanks, In the 1994 film Forrest Gump, used the phrase “stupid is as stupid does.” Wiktionary defines the proverb as, “A person’s lack of intelligence may be judged by the lack of wisdom of their actions.”

It seems we are seeing a lot of “stupid is as stupid does” these days.

From Hollywood making politically correct films, to comedians making politically incorrect gestures, to NFL players taking a knee, to Hollywood actors and actresses saying stupid things, to politicians using taxpayer money to pay off those they have abused in what is now known as “The Swamp.”

HOLLYWOOD

During a recent interview English actress Daisy Ridley, when asked if she will continue to play the role of Rey in future Star Wars episodes, said, “I honestly feel like the world may end in the next 30 years, so, if in 30 years we are not living underground in a series of interconnected cells …”

In 2016 American actress, writer, producer and two time Golden Globe Award winner Lena Dunham said, “Now I can say that I still haven’t had an abortion, but I wish I had.”

Perhaps the quote that best makes our point is from American rapper Kanye West.

In a Harper’s Bazaar interview West said, “I actually don’t like thinking. I think people think I like to think a lot. And I don’t. I don’t like to think.”

Honesty is sometimes the best policy?

POLITICIANS

Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) expressing concern during a congressional hearing that the presence of a large number of American soldiers might upend the island of Guam stated, ”My fear is that the whole island will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize.”

Or perhaps former Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy saying, ‘They don’t call me Tyrannosaurus Sex for nothing.” If alive today Ted would be welcome bookend to Senator Al Franken?

Remember then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi talking about President Obama’s healthcare law saying, ”But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of the controversy.” Of course now Minority Leader Pelosi is concerned about Congress not reading the Senate Republican Tax Cut and Jobs bill.

Or former Vice President and climate expert Al Gore noting that, “A zebra does not change its spots.”

TV COMMENTATORS

In the below video former Republican Congressman now MSNBC show host and TV commentator Joe Scarborough went on a rant about President Trump being mentally unfit.

John Michael Chambers wrote, “The opposite of love isn’t hate, it’s fear.” All of those listed above and many more are fearful. They fear that their world is collapsing because fly over Americans elected a President who speaks truth to the swamp. A President who keeps his campaign promises and does what he says. They fear the truth.

RELATED ARTICLE: Fewer now have mix of liberal, conservative views in U.S. | Pew Research Center

VIDEO: The ‘politicization’ of the Hillary Clinton email/Mueller investigation — top FBI agent fired!

Judicial Watch founder Tom Fitton discusses the politicization of the Mueller investigation given the revelation that one of the top agents Peter Strzok, involved in both the Hillary Clinton email and the Russian collusion investigations,  has along with his mistress, been fired.

According to multiple news outlets FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok, was the deputy head of counterintelligence at the FBI. He was the tip-of-the-spear in the Clinton email investigation assigned by James Comey. FBI Agent Strzok was part of a very small special team, called the “skinny team”, tasked with investigating Hillary Clinton. Agent Peter Strzok was one of the few people who actually interviewed Hillary Clinton.

Additionally, this year agent Peter Strzok was personally selected by Special Counsel Robert Mueller to be the TOP FBI AGENT in charge of the investigation into collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian collusion conspiracy.

However, as a direct outcome of an Inspector General investigation into Peter Strzok, it is just coming to light that text messages and written communication between Strzok and an FBI lawyer named Lisa Page will show a strong bias to clear Clinton and against Trump.

Behind the communication, Peter Strzok and FBI attorney Lisa Page were having an affair. Strzok and Page communicated with each other about their disdain and hatred for Donald Trump while they were key members of the Muller investigative team.

Strzok has been removed from Mueller’s investigative team after it was found out he exchanged anti-Trump text messages with a mistress.

Heavy.com reports the five facts about FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok:

  1. Strzok Reportedly Had an Affair With an F.B.I. Lawyer Lisa Page, to Whom He Often Texted Anti-Trump & Pro-Clinton Messages
  2. Strzok Was Removed From the Investigation in August & Page Was 1 Month Later
  3. Strzok Took Part in the Clinton Email Investigation & Reportedly Altered the Language of the Findings
  4. Strzok Graduated From Georgetown University & His Wife Works at the SEC
  5. Strzok Was Named in a Lawsuit Against the F.B.I. For Its Use of Polygraphs When Interviewing Applicants

Read the details here.

RELATED ARTICLE: Former UN Ambassador on D.C. Deep State Attacks on Trump: This Is the “First Attempted Coup D’état in US History” (VIDEO)

RELATED VIDEO: Hannity: Mueller’s Investigators are Partisan Hacks.

Are We Being Propagandized? How To Resist Getting Sucked In

As I scroll through my Twitter feed and Facebook, looking at trending topics, it’s easy to look at the media outlet originating the article, and assume how they will come down on a certain topic. Being a normal human being, you automatically zero in on the media outlets that support your way of thinking.

It’s kind of funny (not funny ha-ha, but funny strange) that there are two outlets covering the exact same incident and tweak a few words or add/delete a certain detail and the news story says something totally different. It can be infuriating to see such polar opposites in the news. Meanwhile, everyone claims they are right. And if you dare express an opposing option…option mind you…not necessarily an opinion, you get slammed down and shouted down until you either shut up and shut down, or just go away.

Propaganda is a tricky business; and people on all sides of the issues are slinging it around. Many of these people are well meaning, and some are clearly not. Some news outlets are so sure they are being righteous and truthful, and so afraid that the general population, often referred to as a clump, “‘The American People’ are concerned…or aware…or like this…or think this… or that,” will be mis-led, so they take the responsibility upon themselves to lead them into a certain way of thinking.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I listen to a statement about what concerns the “American People” and I think, “How dare they speak for me? They don’t even know me.” What these people are doing is stating their opinion as fact and use inflammatory statements intended to make the “American People” feel left out or stupid or in the minority if they disagree.

OK, I get it. It’s about ratings and free speech and being the first to present the facts. Of course. That is what it is. We have to stop blaming the media, the politicians, and the advertisers and get informed. It’s a contest, a race for who’s on top, who’s got the best ratings and that’s all part of a capitalistic society. But if we, the “American People,” want to avoid getting caught up in the vortex of a propagandized agenda, we must be the ones to stop the reactivity. We must be the ones to slow down the rate at which we listen, think and respond. We are really the ones who have the power to change the culture to what we want it to be, not what some politician or news source wants it to be. But we have to stop being lazy in our listening.

Blaming and finger pointing is lazy and reactive. We need to accept what is and embrace it. If we are seeing a divided society or propaganda-slinging, we need to stop resisting it and hoping it will go away, but we need to see it for what it is and ask ourselves, “So what do we do about that?” Awareness is the beginning of change. When we are aware of what we are dealing with, we can develop a plan of action. Blaming and finger pointing is not a plan of action.

If different media outlets are spouting totally different stories, then we need to hear what’s out there. We need to dig through the rubble and find facts, and differentiate them from opinions. It may be painful to listen to an outlet that doesn’t necessarily sing to your tune, but it’s a great chance to learn how to sing harmony.

As a therapist, I am constantly aware that one side sounds correct and credible until you hear another perspective, then when you hear all perspectives, it can get pretty messy with blaming and name calling and mudslinging. But if you make a judgment based on one side of the story and start jumping on the bandwagon to oppose, (Can we even say, destroy?) the opposition, we will never find the truth. We will never find a solution. We will just continue to get more and more divided, and factionalized. When a country or a society is divided and factionalized, it is weakened. It begins to crack. Then remember earlier we talked about how some of this is done by well meaning people? OK, but there are those out there that would utterly destroy our community, society, or country. They will take advantage of our naivety, our emotional reactivity and lack of intestinal fortitude to do the real work of searching for truth.

So how do we protect our society and ourselves? We need to each, personally make sure we are grounded and connected to the source of truth. Many studies have been done showing how meditation changes the brain. It helps you process toxic emotions; it reduces anxiety and depression; it helps you think clearer and increases empathy and compassion. Those that would divide us know that if they can get us stirred up to stop thinking and just react on our triggered emotions, our capacity for empathy decreases. We are no longer able to hold conflicting thoughts in our minds and process them. We become sheep being led to the slaughter of someone else’s agenda based in power and control. That is a dangerous place for a society to be.

I am not advocating any one type of meditation because there is a place in every belief system or faith to define it as you will, but the truth is we all, every single one of us, need to slow down the reactivity and learn to take a breath and detach from the drama and propaganda (from all sides) and learn to listen to the wisdom within. It’s there. It’s just waiting on you to breathe.

Pro-Life Students Sue Miami University Because It Won’t Let Them Erect a Cross

Students at the Miami University in Ohio are suing the school after it wouldn’t let them erect a cross on its campus to express their pro-life message.

Filed by the Alliance Defending Freedom on behalf of Miami University’s Students for Life, the lawsuit alleges that the university violated their rights to free speech and expression because it wouldn’t let them erect a cross on it’s Hamilton campus, which recently hosted an event on the “Perspectives of Free Speech,” according to WLWT5. The suit also asks the university to change its policies regarding campus postage and seeks monetary damages.

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Miami University’s Students for Life has displayed its cross every year in an appeal to Christians and pro-lifers to protect the life of the unborn for both religious and moral reasons, but campus officials said the students couldn’t erect their symbol this year, according to WLWT5. They added that the cross would only be permitted if the students included “warning” signs around campus explaining why they had erected the cross.

The university plans to “address any potential mistake,” said school spokeswoman Claire Wagner, who indicated the lawsuit may have resulted from a miscommunication or misunderstanding between the students and campus officials.

Other universities have also faced run-ins with events regarding free speech, including Ryerson University, which canceled a panel dedicated to discussing the silencing of free speech on college campuses, citing “campus safety.”

Not long ago, the Berkeley mayor also advised the University of California, Berkeley to cancel conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos’ planned September Free Speech Week, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Grace Carr

Grace Carr is a reporter for The Daily Caller News Foundation. Twitter: @gbcarr24.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image of a cross is by Wagner Santos/Photoshot/Newscom. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities for this original content, email licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

President Trump Weighs in on Judicial Watch’s Fox News Interview

In case you missed it, below is the video of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton’s appearance on “Fox and Friends” on the Fox News Channel on Sunday, December 3, 2017, where Tom discussed the Mueller investigation and the firing of an anti-Trump FBI agent.

Here is President Trump’s tweet:

RELATED ARTICLE: Wife of demoted DOJ official worked for Fusion GPS

Cardinal Burke: ‘Perhaps We Have Arrived at The End Times’

RAVENNA, Italy (ChurchMilitant.com) – For the second time this year, Cdl. Raymond Burke is warning the “end times” may be here.

On Thursday, the Catholic Herald published an exclusive interview in which Burke, the former head of the Vatican supreme court, again diagnosed the state of the world and the Church as “apocalyptic.”

“In the present moment, there is confusion and error about the most fundamental teachings of the Church, for example with regard to marriage and the family,” Burke explained.

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To illustrate, he pointed to “the idea that people who are living in an irregular union could receive the sacraments,” which he reaffirmed “is a violation of the truth with regard both to the indissolubility of marriage and to the sanctity of the Eucharist.”

“Now, the confusion in the Church is going even further than that, because there is today confusion as to whether there are acts which are intrinsically evil and this, of course, is the foundation of the moral law,” he said.

“When this foundation begins to be questioned within the Church, then the whole order of human life and the order of the Church itself are endangered.”

The Church, Burke said, “seems to be confused.”

Clearly, the present situation of the world cannot continue without leading to total annihilation. Tweet

“In that sense, one may have the feeling that the Church gives the appearance of being unwilling to obey the mandates of Our Lord,” he said, adding, “Then perhaps we have arrived at the end times.”

Burke was expanding on comments he made at a Fatima conference in July.

There, he recounted a young priest asking him, “Cardinal, do you think that we are in the end times?”

“I did not hesitate to respond: ‘It may be so.'” he said.

The American cardinal spelled out his reasons for his thinking. Describing the current age as “most troubled,” Burke said:

Secularization has ravaged the culture of many nations, especially in the West, alienating culture from its only true source in God and His plan for us and our world. There is the daily and widespread attack on innocent and defenseless human life with the resulting unprecedented violence in family life and in society, in general. There is the ever more virulent gender ideology, which propagates total confusion about our identity as male and female and leads to the profound unhappiness and even self-destruction of many in society. There is also the denial of the freedom of religion which attempts to hinder, if not snuff out completely, any public discourse about God and our necessary relationship with Him. With the denial of the freedom of religion comes the attempt to force God-fearing individuals to act against their well-formed conscience, that is, against God’s law written upon the human heart. In supposedly free countries, the government forces upon society practices of abortion, sterilization, contraception, euthanasia and lack of respect for human sexuality, even to the point of indoctrinating small children in the iniquitous ‘gender theory.’

At the same time, atheistic materialism and relativism leads to the unscrupulous pursuit of wealth, pleasure and power, while the rule of law, dictated by justice, is trampled underfoot. In such a pervasively disordered cultural condition, there is legitimate fear of a global confrontation which can only mean destruction and death for many. Clearly, the present situation of the world cannot continue without leading to total annihilation.

At the same moment that turmoil is enveloping the world more and more, Burke noted, the Church is beset by profound crisis. “[In] a diabolical way, the confusion and error which has led human culture in the way of death and destruction has also entered into the Church,” he lamented, such that “she draws near to the culture without seeming to know her own identity and mission, without seeming to have the clarity and the courage to announce the Gospel of Life and Divine Love to the radically secularized culture.”

“For whatever reason,” the cardinal observed, “many shepherds are silent about the situation in which the Church finds herself or have abandoned the clarity of the Church’s teaching for the confusion and error which is wrongly thought to address more effectively the total collapse of Christian culture.”

Pope St. John Paul II after his 1978 election.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church paints a dire picture of the Church at the end of the age — a time of unprecedented deception, persecution and suffering: “Before Christ’s Second Coming, the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the Faith of many believers.” (paragraph 675)

It describes the nature of this trial as a “supreme religious deception”: “The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the ‘mystery of iniquity’ in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the Truth.”

By this “pseudo-messianism,” man will glorify himself “in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.”

As far back as 1976, Cdl. Karol Wojtyla (prior to his papacy as Pope John Paul II) seemed to be of a similar mindset, declaring at the International Eucharistic Congress in Philadelphia:

We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation humanity has ever experienced. I do not think that the wide circle of the American society or the whole wide circle of the Christian community realize this fully. We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-church, between the Gospel and the anti-Gospel, between Christ and the antichrist. The confrontation lies within the plans of Divine Providence. It is, therefore, in God’s plan, and it must be a trial which the Church must take up, and face courageously.

But in his 1978 inaugural homily as pontiff, Pope St. John Paul II urged the crowd assembled in St. Peter’s Square, “Brothers and sisters, do not be afraid to welcome Christ and accept his power. … Do not be afraid. Open wide the doors for Christ. … Do not be afraid. Christ knows ‘what is in man.’ He alone knows it.”

Likewise, Cdl. Burke reminds Catholics to push forward in faith.

“What then must be our response to the exceedingly difficult times in which we are living, times which realistically seem to be apocalyptic?” he asked. “It must be the response of faith, of faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Christ, Burke reminded his audience, “is alive for us in the Church.” Christ “never fails to teach, sanctify and guide us in the Church, even as He professed to remain with us always until His return on the Last Day to inaugurate ‘new Heavens and a new earth’ to welcome the faithful to the Wedding Feast of the Lamb.”

“We know what Christ teaches us in the Church. It is contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, in the official teaching of the Church. His teaching does not change,” he emphasized.

“In the midst of the present confusion and division, we must study more attentively the teachings of the Faith contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and be prepared to defend those teachings against any falsehood which would erode the Faith and thus the unity of the Church,” added Burke.

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The Obamacare Mandate Is a Tax, So the Senate Bill Is Correct

The Supreme Court saved the program by calling it a tax. It should be repealed like a tax.

Jeffrey A. Tucker

by  Jeffrey A. Tucker

The Washington Post is outraged. The New York Times even more so.

Commentators are going nuts.

“Using a tax bill to abolish the individual mandate amounts to a backdoor way of sabotaging Obamacare,” writes John Cassidy.

“Republicans, and Donald Trump, have counted on that (as well as your limited outrage bandwidth) in slipping an Affordable Care Act mandate repeal inside their insidious tax bill,” writes Bridget Read.

All this howling is due to how the GOP-controlled Senate used a tax bill to repeal a health bill. The implication is that this is something shady and duplicitous, like an exercise in false pretense.Actually, there is absolutely nothing shady about the repeal of the Obamacare mandate. There is no back door here. No bait and switch. Obamacare’s much-despised individual mandate is, in fact, a tax. It is properly dealt with in a tax bill.

Don’t take my word for it. This is precisely what the Supreme Court itself ruled in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius (2012). It was widely seen as the ruling that codified Obamacare, giving it the constitutional gloss it needed to stay a law.

The law has been challenged on many grounds but one of which was that it is unconstitutional for Congress to force the people to purchase a service. The court said that this might not pass muster if that were what Congress was doing. Instead, ruled a 5 to 4 majority, the individual mandate should be considered a tax like any other. Taxes are permissible. Therefore Obamacare is completely fine.

Said the Court:

The Affordable Care Act’s requirement that certain individuals pay a financial penalty for not obtaining health insurance may reasonably be characterized as a tax. Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness.

Further:

It is abundantly clear the Constitution does not guarantee that individuals may avoid taxation through inactivity. A capitation, after all, is a tax that everyone must pay simply for existing, and capitations are expressly contemplated by the Constitution. The Court today holds that our Constitution protects us from federal regulation under the Commerce Clause so long as we abstain from the regulated activity. But from its creation, the Constitution has made no such promise with respect to taxes.

To be sure, the ruling was a bit of an embarrassment for Obamacare proponents because they never liked to talk about the mandate as a tax. It was a payment for wonderful services. The Court said it is true that forcing people to buy something would contradict precedent. So in order to beat back the challenge, the majority found a clever way of redefining the nature of the mandate itself.

At this, Obamacare proponents, while a bit red faced, expressed relief. At least the legislation gets to stay, thanks to an ideologically driven court majority.

The Senate is merely deferring to what the court said and nothing more. The highest court in the land said that the mandate – which is the heart of the legislation – should be regarded as a tax. Fine. The Senate couldn’t repeal the bill in healthcare legislation. So they listened to the court and did exactly what they were supposed to do all along: treat the monstrosity as a tax in a tax bill.The people who are outraged today are only tasting their own medicine, nothing more.

Thus should the repeal be seen as another way in which this legislation is a tax cut for the American people. Will it destabilize health insurance markets? Yes and no. Without the mandate, Obamacare might not survive. But Obamacare is not a real market. It is a fake market. You know this because the many mandates effectively abolish market signaling.

What this tax repeal does is begin to let the market function again. True, there are many more reforms that are necessary to make health insurance work properly again. But this is a good beginning. And it was done entirely properly, precisely as the Supreme Court itself said it should be done.

Jeffrey A. Tucker

Jeffrey A. Tucker

Jeffrey Tucker is Director of Content for the Foundation for Economic Education. He is founder of Liberty.me, Distinguished Honorary Member of Mises Brazil, economics adviser to FreeSociety.com, research fellow at the Acton Institute, policy adviser of the Heartland Institute, founder of the CryptoCurrency Conference, member of the editorial board of the Molinari Review, an advisor to the blockchain application builder Factom, and author of five books, most recently Right-Wing Collectivism: The Other Threat to Liberty, with a preface by Deirdre McCloskey (FEE 2017). He has written 150 introductions to books and many thousands of articles appearing in the scholarly and popular press. He is available for press interviews via his email.

We Can Thank a Flawed Jury System for the Steinle Verdict

Much has been said about the acquittal of felonious invader Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, the killer of young Kate Steinle, who died in her father’s arms. Yet while most of the focus has been on “sanctuary cities” — a euphemism for treasonous, lawless cities — there perhaps has been no scrutiny of the people whose minds are too often a sanctuary from knowledge and reality: modern jurors.

The problem stems from “The Error of Impartiality,” which is the title of an essay on this very subject. For what is often perceived in jurors as fairness is just fecklessness, of the moral variety.

When choosing jurors, pains are taken to dismiss people with preconceived notions about the case. But consider: If in question is a high-profile matter such as the O.J. Simpson or Steinle case, what kind of person would know nothing about it and/or have formed no opinions? Does this reflect impartiality or just indifference?

Assuming such a person makes the ideal juror is like supposing that someone still undecided the day before a high-profile election is surely a better voter than someone who reads the news and formed an opinion early on. An undecided individual may be a better voter in the particular (relative to a given wrongly decided voter), but in principle this supposition simply is untrue. G.K. Chesterton explained the matter brilliantly in the aforementioned essay, writing:

What people call impartiality may simply mean indifference, and what people call partiality may simply mean mental activity. It is sometimes made an objection, for instance, to a juror that he has formed some primâ-facie opinion upon a case: if he can be forced under sharp questioning to admit that he has formed such an opinion, he is regarded as manifestly unfit to conduct the inquiry. Surely this is unsound. If his bias is one of interest, of class, or creed, or notorious propaganda, then that fact certainly proves that he is not an impartial arbiter. But the mere fact that he did form some temporary impression from the first facts as far as he knew them — this does not prove that he is not an impartial arbiter — it only proves that he is not a cold-blooded fool.

If we walk down the street, taking all the jurymen who have not formed opinions and leaving all the jurymen who have formed opinions, it seems highly probable that we shall only succeed in taking all the stupid jurymen and leaving all the thoughtful ones. Provided that the opinion formed is really of this airy and abstract kind, provided that it has no suggestion of settled motive or prejudice, we might well regard it not merely as a promise of capacity, but literally as a promise of justice. The man who took the trouble to deduce from the police reports would probably be the man who would take the trouble to deduce further and different things from the evidence. The man who had the sense to form an opinion would be the man who would have the sense to alter it.

Chesterton also noted that the logical outcome of our “impartiality” standard is that a “case ought to be tried by Esquimaux, or Hottentots, or savages from the Cannibal Islands — by some class of people who could have no conceivable interest in the parties, and moreover, no conceivable interest in the case. The pure and starry perfection of impartiality would be reached by people who not only had no opinion before they had heard the case, but who also had no opinion after they had heard it.”

The essay is pure gold, and I strongly recommend you read the whole thing.

I once wrote a piece titled “Why Most Voters Shouldn’t Vote,” and a corresponding principle may be that most jurors shouldn’t sit on juries. People so apathetic that they couldn’t be bothered to try and determine reality on high profile candidates or cases probably won’t transform, magically, into sagacious sleuths of reality upon entering a ballot or jury box. Apathy is not an asset, and ignorance is not a virtue.

Contact Selwyn Duke, follow him on Twitter or log on to SelwynDuke.com

RELATED ARTICLES: Kate Steinle Deserves Better Than Democrats Opposing Deportation of Illegal Aliens

Make America Great Again Coalition stands with Alabama and Judge Roy Moore

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. /PRNewswire/ — The eyes of the nation are upon you. December 12th vote will be a crucial test of honor, morality, justice and wisdom. As is often the case in politics, nothing will be black or white. There will be no “right” answer, no unequivocal fact, and no pundit, politician or personality who holds the moral high ground. Myself included.

However, our MAGA Coalition made the call on this race months ago when we endorsed Judge Roy Moore for US Senate. It would be a shameful abdication of our duties to shy away from clarifying that endorsement in a time of trial and tribulation. In fact, there is no greater test of one’s mettle than to weigh in on matters such as the election facing Alabama voters.

This is the new and obscene American political landscape — a place where the lowest common denominator reigns, and charges of depravity rule the day. Are we so desensitized that we don’t flinch at 40-year-old charges, lobbed like a hand grenade, 30 days before an election? The methods deployed by the Washington Post in printing their latest bit of “organic” journalism, is almost as repugnant as the charges alleged within. As we watch the establishment powers that be in Washington D.C., trying to wrestle away the autonomy and integrity of elections for all Alabamians, we can only offer our contempt for the manner in which their charges against Judge Roy Moore have been staged.

To be clear: the campaign of Doug Jones, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and the mainstream media, have turned a US Senate election into a binary choice on individual morality. The implication being, if you don’t vote a certain way, we will paint your entire state as moral degenerates. Not too dissimilar from the efforts of those who sought to define Donald Trump by surreptitious recordings from an Access Hollywood show. This playbook is well-worn and dog-eared by now, yet the masters of political war in Washington plow forward. They see themselves as the sole moral arbiters and purveyors of truth, and voters as simple tools to advance their agenda. Their hypocrisy knows no bounds.

Alabama is now the tip of the spear. Each man and woman of voting age will be transformed into an agent of justice on December 12th. Every voting booth will be transformed into a jury box; not for the guilt or innocence of Judge Roy Moore, per se, but for the whole political system. A vote for Roy Moore is not a vote on what may or may not have happened in 1979. The moral equivalency game is not a winnable one. If the biblical parable of Solomon’s wisdom is to hold true: who in this scenario is prepared to split the child? One side is willing to sacrifice this election rather than allow the grassroots another win. That much is clear.

It feels to us like there are unseen forces at work, seeking to replace our hope with hostility, our faith with fear, and our judgment with theirs. On November 8th, 2016, the world watched as we made our choice. Now, on December 12th, the nation looks to you, Alabama. There, in the solitude of the voting booth, you will have your say. Nothing, and no one, can take that moment from you. May you all be blessed, even if only in that moment, with the Wisdom of Solomon.

God bless Alabama and God bless America.

Adam Gingrich
President – MAGA Coalition, Inc.

RELATED ARTICLE: Don’t Be Fooled: The Left Doesn’t Care About Morals; It Cares About Power.