Category Archives: Media

Fruits ‘N Nuts: Journalists Charged with Practicing Journalism in California

In 2015, pro-life organization The Center for Medical Progress began exposing via undercover videos the shocking practices of Planned Parenthood clinics that have been involved in the harvesting and selling of tissue and organs from unborn children.  Several videos—one more disturbing than the next—showed high-level PP executives admitting to CMP undercover journalists that they often alter their procedures in order to preserve vital organs of these unborn babies in order to sell them to various companies who sell them for scientific research. (Check out the original postings here and here).

Just last week, with the release of another video, two CMP journalists, David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt, were charged with 15 felonies by California’s Attorney General Xavier Becerra.  Becerra’s charges center on “invasion of privacy” issues, saying that recording someone without their knowledge is against California law.

It should be noted that Beccerra is a former Democrat member of Congress, and his predecessor, Kamala Harris has a long and friendly relationship with the nation’s largest abortion provider.  Harris ran successfully for  the U.S. Senate due in part to help from her friends at PP, that were undoubtedly paying her back for not going after them 2 years ago when the first videos were being released.  Like Becerra, she too went after the whistleblowers at the Center for Medical Progress, but all those charges were eventually dropped as having no validity.

In this newest video, Dr. DeShawn Taylor, Medical Director Emerita of Planned Parenthood Arizona, is captured on tape making some pretty callous comments about her work, and how she profits off the destruction of the unborn.  At one point, she talks about the strength that it takes in her upper arms to perform abortions where “disarticulation”—a fancy word for dismemberment—is done with the forceps. Remembering her glory days as a young Fellow training to kill innocent children, Dr. Taylor recalls having to “hit the gym for this. [laughs]. I need to hit the gym.”

As if that weren’t enough, this medical professional, when asked about how signs of life are determined during an abortion, Dr. Taylor admits, “the key is you need to pay attention to who’s in the room, right? And like, you know, because the thing is the law states that you’re not supposed to do any maneuvers after the fact to try to cause [fetal] demise. So it’s really tricky. It’s really tricky so, most of the time we do dig [digoxin], and it usually works. And then we don’t have to worry about that because Arizona state law says if any, if there’s signs of life, then we’re supposed to transport them. To the hospital.” Dr. Taylor also expresses her distaste for the word choice of those who do the paperwork once her job is done:  “We have the people who do our paperwork for the fetal death certificates; they email us calling them ‘babies’. Baby this, baby that, baby so-and-so, and I’m like, that’s creepy!”

In Dr. Taylor’s world, calling an unborn human being a “baby” is creepy. No, what’s creepy, doctor, is that you go on to actually find some compassion—for your staff, who according to you, get creeped out when a baby actually comes out looking like—a baby: ““It’s not a matter of how I feel about it coming out intact, but I gotta worry about my staff and people’s feelings about it coming out looking like a baby.”  If you can take watching the entire video, you can watch it here.

CMP journalists Daleiden and Merritt were only doing what journalists used to do as a matter of practice.  Going undercover to break a story goes back a long way in our history as part of our Constitutional Freedom of the Press.  It seems the attorney general’s office in California only cares about the state’s privacy laws when the journalists doing the exposing are those who agree with a particular worldview. As a California Democrat, it would be hard to imagine that Becerra himself hadn’t benefited from Planned Parenthood as he pursued public life.  It’s also very strange that other undercover journalists using the same tactics as CMP had not been charged with breaking privacy laws there in the past few years.  For example, in 2014 and 2015, a California animal rights group, Mercy for Animals, released some videos that showed cruelty against animals at a chicken farm. The organization was never charged with violating privacy laws, but the government did investigate the farm.  This was also the case for incidents with other animal rights groups who exposed similar incidents of cruelty.

If California is going to limit freedom of the press there, they should do so across the board instead of making examples of David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt. Then they can free themselves from their already sketchy attachment to the U.S. Constitution.  Better yet, maybe that whole succession movement in the Land of Fruits and Nuts will actually take hold.

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For Christmas Geeks Only

It’s almost Christmas and nothing’s more fun than being with family, baking, eating and watching all those old Christmas movies.  In the spirit of the season, here’s some Christmas trivia, mostly from films, to impress/ entertain/ bore your friends and family over the holidays.

It doesn’t get much better than It’s a Wonderful Life (1946):  Proving that even a director with incredible talent can overlook some things, Frank Capra missed this one:  when Clarence is showing George Bailey what life would have been like without him, he takes him to his younger brother’s grave, telling him that Harry fell through the ice and died at the age of nine.  However, on the tombstone, Harry Bailey’s years of life are shown as 1911-1919, which means he could have been no older than eight when he died.

A Christmas Story (1983):  One of the most famous scenes from this classic film is when one of Ralphie’s school pals, Flick, is “triple-dog-dared” into putting his tongue against a frosty flag pole to prove that it will stick.  In order to make Flick’s tongue stick to the pole, a hidden suction tube was used to safely create the illusion that his tongue had frozen to the metal.  Another bit of trivia:  director Bob Clark makes an appearance as one of the neighbors who comes out to gawk at The Old Man’s “major award” in the hilarious unveiling of The Leg Lamp.  He’s the guy who says, “Damn, hell- you say you won it?”

…which brings us to Elf (2003) where Peter Billingsley, who played young Ralphie in A Christmas Story makes an uncredited appearance as Ming Ming, the Head Elf.  Also, if you ever thought, while you watched this movie, that certain things looked very familiar, you were onto something.  The design for Santa’s workshop, all of the elf costumes and most of the animals in the North Pole were mirror images of those from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, the much-loved Christmas special that has aired every year since its debut in 1964.

But Rudolph’s story had been around since 1939 when it was created for an advertising campaign for Montgomery Ward.  The song about Rudolph was first recorded by Gene Autry and hit #1 on Billboard’s pop chart during the week of Christmas in 1949.

Gene Autry recorded another Christmas classic, “Here Comes Santa Clause” that gets featured toward the end of Christmas Vacation (1989) when the Clark Griswold home is ransacked by the S.W.A.T. Team.  Earlier on, when Clark gets locked in a cold attic while everyone’s out shopping, he passes the time watching old films from family Christmases past.  Look closely and you can see the front of the house from the 1960’s series Bewitched in Clark’s home movie.

Chevy Chase was just one of many actors considered for the part of Kevin McCallister’s (Macauley Culkin) dad in Home Alone (1990).  That part eventually went to John Heard.  In the scene where Kevin grabs his brother’s pet tarantula in order to scare bungling crook Marv (played by Daniel Stern), they were originally using a mechanical spider.  It was decided the fake bug looked too fake, so Stern agreed to do just one take with the real thing, which Kevin drops onto his face, causing him to scream like a girl.  Stern made the wise decision to mimic the scream so as not to spook the spider, and his scream was added in during post-production.

Perhaps no other story of Christmas has been told more often or in more ways than Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.  His tale of redemption just celebrated its 170th anniversary (it was published on December 19, 1843).  An interesting piece of trivia is that Dickens himself had some things in common with Mr. Scrooge.  Like the famous miser, Dickens lost his favorite sister Fanny, who died, not in childbirth as Scrooge’s sister did, but of tuberculosis.  Her son, Henry was crippled and was Dickens’ inspiration for the character of Tiny Tim.

What better way to close out this stocking full of Christmas trivia than with some tidbits from what many people, myself included, consider to be the most-loved Christmas special ever.  When its director saw a rough cut of A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965), he was sure he had a flop on his hands.  There was no laugh track, as was typical of animated specials of the day, and director Bill Melendez had tried to get Peanuts creator Charles M Schultz to take out the Biblical references—particularly Linus’ speech from Luke 2.  Reportedly, Schultz won him over by asking, “If we don’t do it, who will?”   CBS executives were also nervous at the prospect of an animated Christmas special with such a blatant message.  In spite of all this, the message remained, and that scene with Linus has become highly acclaimed, with multiple generations still enjoying this classic year after year.  Only Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer can top it in longevity as far as television Christmas specials go.

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11

…and as Linus said, “That’s what Christmas is all about.”

Merry Christmas, everyone!

A Charlie Brown Christmas- 1965

A Charlie Brown Christmas- 1965

New Wave

If you were growing up in the 70’s or 80’s, you might remember the ABC After-School Specials that were shown a couple of times each month.  These mini-movies addressed issues relevant to kids and teens–some were rather corny, but others pretty hard-hitting for the day.  An example of the latter was called “The Wave”, and it aired in 1981.  It was based on a real-life experiment that was done at a California high school back in 1967.

High school teacher Ben Ross is teaching his students about the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich. After watching some old films showing the victims of Hitler’s Holocaust, the students ask him how the German people could have fallen for such a leader. They wonder how they couldn’t see what was going on in their own country.

With no real answer to give them, Ross decides to try similar leadership tactics in his classroom as Hitler used on Germany. He begins to use a similar cadence in his speech. He says they will call their new movement “The Wave”. He speaks to them of “Strength through discipline. Strength through community. Strength through action.” He insists they stand and sit at their desks in a stiff posture…and he is amazed to find the students doing it on their own, day after day. He even marvels at the whole experiment in a conversation with his wife. When she asks him how far he thinks he can go with it, he tells her, “I don’t know. But I intend to find out.”

Within two short weeks, the whole school is caught up in The Wave, with very few exceptions. One boy in particular— Bobby, the class loner, bullied by all—is finally a part of the group. He’s now finally a leader.

On the other hand, Lori, the girl who once was the leader of her peers, finds herself an outcast when this new movement sweeping the school starts to bother her. She takes to the school paper and begins writing articles against it, promoting the idea of individuality and thinking for oneself. She finds herself the target of harassment, threats, and is nearly physically assaulted by her own boyfriend. After nearly hitting her, he comes to his senses and they decide they have to try to do something about The Wave.

This little after-school special from 35 years ago tells us all we need to know about the potential dangers of populism in less than an hour. Of falling for slogans and cheap one-liners from those who wish to lead us without digging deeper to find out what it is this person is really about. Of following anyone who says what they’ve been wanting someone to say for years…of allowing anger and frustration to cloud judgment, even to the point of abandoning your own core principles and individuality.

That boy Bobby is like lots of Americans who are sick and tired of no one in Washington listening to them. They feel bullied and kicked around by the people who are supposed to serve them. They are easy prey for anyone who comes along and makes them believe, “I’ve got your back.”—when really, they couldn’t care less. It was Bobby who was the most devastated to find out that The Wave was really just an experiment…there was nothing real about it. And he was just a lonely outsider once again.

Such is the way of many populist movements. The Little Guy will still be the one left out in the end. If you disagree, think back to the woman who, back in Election 2008 became known as “Peggy the Mooch”. Peggy Joseph was the one who gushed at an Obama campaign rally.  “I won’t have to worry about putting gas in my car; I won’t have to worry about paying my mortgage…if I help him, he’s gonna help me.” When documentary filmmaker Joel Gilbert interviewed Joseph for his film,“There’s No Place Like Utopia” in 2014, she had realized she’d been duped. No longer an Obama supporter, Joseph told him, “He lied about everything.”

I feel compassion for that woman, just as I felt compassion for her fictional counterpart Bobby…for all of the Bobbys and Peggys out there who, time and again, keep looking for leadership in all the wrong places. Even Jesus came upon these types of people—He called them “harassed and helpless”.

In this election, both the Democrats and Republicans have a candidate that many in the media are calling “populists”. Or possibly “faux populists” as National Review refers to them. One promises the debt-laden millennials a free ride for life; the other says all the things his supporters want to hear, but has no detailed plans on how to make them happen…or how we’ll pay for all of it. No one cares. They just want change.

That sounds eerily familiar. “The Wave” is worth watching because it’s very timely. Even compared to other after-school specials of the day, it was exceptional and won many awards, including an Emmy for Outstanding Children’s Program. Without giving too much away (in case you decide to watch it in full on You Tube), teacher Ben Ross shocks and grieves his students when he reveals truth to them, asking, “What causes people to deny their own history?”

What’s more, he warns them against blindly following a leader: “You accepted the group’s will over your own convictions, no matter who you hurt. Oh, you thought you were just going along for the ride- that you could walk away at any moment, but where were you heading? How far would you have gone?”

America…how far will you go?

Scene from "The Wave", 1981

Scene from “The Wave”, 1981

About Those Super Bowl Ads…

The fanatics of the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) have been having a hashtag hissy-fit over a Doritos ad that aired during Sunday night’s Super Bowl 50. It doesn’t take much to offend most people these days, but the religiously pro-abortion crowd at NARAL took to social media after the spot aired.

It features a couple in a doctor’s office. The woman is pregnant and is having an ultrasound, while her husband crunches through a bag of Doritos, much to his wife’s dismay. She apparently finds it an inappropriate time and place to be scarfing down chips. While he mindlessly enjoys his snack, we can see the unborn child on the monitor showing some interest in his (or her) dad’s Doritos. When the wife gets mad and throws a chip across the room…the baby decides to fly out after it.

NARAL failed to see the attempt at humor in the ad because they claimed it “humanizes a fetus”. Under the #NotBuyingIt, Twitter lit up throughout the game with tweets on spots they saw as sexist, and used #MediaWeLike for those that passed their politically correct test. Some of the other commercials that raised their ire: A Buick ad showing a wedding (for showing women fighting over a bouquet; an Audi ad (for having no female astronauts) and a Snickers ad (for being “transphobic” and claims it’s saying it’s “OK to objectify women as long as they have a snack”).

I have to comment on their objections to 2 of those ads. First, the Audi ad, called “Commander” is touching and nostalgic. It shows an elderly man who had once been an astronaut tearfully looking at photos on the wall of his glory days in space. Then his grandson comes by, and during a ride in an Audi R8, the older man’s spirits are lifted as a David Bowie tune plays. The NARAL complaint that there were no women astronauts shown is idiotic since there were not likely to have been any female astronauts back in his day.

Secondly, the Snickers spot is pretty clever and says absolutely nothing about objectifying women. Had the nags at NARAL bothered to check, they’d know that it’s one of a series of such ads telling viewers that people aren’t quite themselves when they’re hungry–until they have a Snickers. This is the “Marilyn Monroe” ad that spoofs her famous white-dress-blowing-up-around-her scene from the 1955 film “The Seven-Year Itch”. At first we see a director filming “Marilyn”, which is really a disgruntled dude in a white dress and heels—until someone gives him a snickers bar. Lo and behold, he is transformed into the real Marilyn now that Snickers has taken care of her hunger pangs. Snickers aired a similar commercial during last year’s Super Bowl with characters from “The Brady Bunch.” Talk about missing the whole point (and having no sense of humor).

They did manage to find at least one commercial that didn’t offend them, like the one by Axe for men called “Find Your Magic”. They liked that one because it showed “non-traditional” images of men…like a guy wearing high heels dancing in a nightclub.

As for that Doritos ad, perhaps the crazies at NARAL should get a grip and ask themselves why humanizing the “product of conception” (as Planned Parenthood clinics refer to the unborn) between two humans is wrong, offensive, extreme, etc. That’s not the image of a cat, a chicken or anything else on the ultrasound screen—it’s the image of a human being, and that’s the fact they can never get around. The personhood of the “fetus” upsets them because it forces them to see just what it is that is being destroyed on their altar of choice.

Super Bowls are known for their commercials and this year, sponsors paid $5million for a 30-second spot…but when they get people talking, tweeting and writing about their ads—for better or worse—that’s worth every penny.

The ad that made abortion supporters cringe.

The ad that made abortion supporters cringe.

 

Only in America

Remember that teenager in Texas who started the school year last month by bringing his homemade “clock” to school and freaked out his teachers? Apparently, he’s been enjoying his 15 minutes of fame, which looks like it’s turned into a full hour. Leaving his books (and homemade clock/bomb) behind Ahmed Mohamed—aka “The Clock Kid”—has been traveling the world. Last night, he even appeared at the White House as the president’s special guest at the White House Astronomy Night.

Ahmed got his chance to meet NASA scientists and astronauts—minus his “clock”. After he was handcuffed, detained and released the same day for bringing in a briefcase-looking thing with wires coming out of it to his school in mid-September, Obama tweeted his support and invitation to the White House: “Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It’s what makes America great.”

No doubt Obama was thinking that the Irving, Texas school officials and police “acted stupidly” in how they dealt with the Muslim teen. The WH spokesperson Josh Earnest even stated at the time that Ahmed’s teachers “failed him” by stereotyping him as they did. Prior to the White House shin-dig, Ahmed even told the press how hard it was for him to live in the United States and that probably if he had been a white kid, and not a Muslim, nothing would have happened to him.   The ignorance of youth…so easily molded into the role of the victim.

Ahmed must have forgotten what happened to a little white boy, 7-year-old Josh Welch, who was suspended for 2 days from his Maryland school in 2013 because he supposedly ate a pop tart into the shape of a gun. Unfortunately, The Pop Tart Kid never received this kind of VIP support.

Maybe it was a little over the top to put The Clock Kid in handcuffs and haul him down to the police station for the day, but weren’t his public school teachers just adhering to Obama’s own adage to “say something when you see something” when it comes to terror threats? At 14, Ahmed should probably have been aware of the way things are in public schools, and that bringing a briefcase with wires sticking out of it into class might be a bad idea.

These two public school incidents remind me of that saying, “Everyone is equal…some are just more equal than others.” One kid eats a pop tart into a gun shape (he said he was trying to make it look like a mountain in a picture he drew) and gets suspended for a couple days…and has the suspension upheld by a judge the next year because the judge said the boy had a history of bad behavior in school. Another kid, twice his age, says he’s making a clock, that looks nothing like a clock by anyone’s definition of a clock…but it does kind of look like the makings of a bomb. He brings it to school and gets an invitation to bring it to the White House (which he didn’t do).

But it didn’t stop there for Ahmed the Clock Kid. He has since left his high school and is being home-schooled, and has visited Mecca, Google and Queen Rania of Jordan. The young inventor, son of Muslim activist Mohamed Elhassan Mohamad (who ran for the president of Sudan twice) even got to meet the Butcher of Darfur, Omar Hassan al-Bashi, who is the current president of Sudan. Al-Bashi is accused of ordering the genocide of hundreds of thousands of people in Darfur over the past ten years and is wanted for war crimes.

Ahmed has also been honored by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) as their “American Muslim of the Year”. By the way, CAIR remains an un-indicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation case of several years ago where participants were charged with funding the terrorist group Hamas. Ahmed, since you live in Texas, maybe you should do a search for an old country song by Garth Brooks…it’s called “Friends in Low Places”.

So Ahmed goes from an obscure high school nerd to the Man About Town, or rather—The World. Wonder if he still thinks it’s so hard to live in America?

Logic for Dummies

You’ve Got Male

Last fall, I posted about a school district in Nebraska that seriously wanted their teachers to teach children that there are more than male and female genders—there are many, and more are being discovered all the time—so they say.   They wanted their teachers to refer to students in gender-neutral terms, and the one given in their training was “purple penguins”.

Ridiculous, to be sure, and the insanity of this “gender fluidity” movement has only ramped up in the months since. The most recent example of course, being the revelation that Olympic champion Bruce Jenner has decided that he really was a woman for more than six decades who was trapped in the body of a man.

He now will live out the rest of his life as “Caitlyn”…at least that’s what the current narrative is that we’re supposed to believe and find praise-worthy. This news conveniently comes out—with the accompanying media frenzy—in the weeks leading up to the premier of a cable reality show in late July. It will star Caitlyn and follow the newfound woman as the “he” makes his way across The Great Divide to become a “she”. In the promo for the upcoming series, Jenner refers to himself as “the new normal”, while dressed in full female garb. The voice is male as he says these words and he is encouraged by someone off camera assuring him “you are normal.”

It’s interesting that when he did his interview with Diane Sawyer a few weeks back, she was more shocked that he considered himself to be a conservative than that this Olympic decathon winner always felt like a woman! Being part of the mainstream media, the latter issue was less troubling than the former. Most of the liberal media elite think conservatism is a disease, but in reality—the real one, not the reality show kind—what Jenner has dealt with all of his life is an actual mental health issue. According to the American Psychiatric Association, it’s called “Gender Dysphoria”. Up until recent years, it was called “Gender Identity Disorder”.

What could make someone who used to be famous want to deal with their personal demons in a public forum? Giving him the benefit of the doubt, let’s just say he was tired of living a lie and wanted to be a role model to those struggling with the same disorder. That’s definitely one way of looking at it.

Here’s another way that would be much less popular and perhaps more cynical.   When you dig a little deeper, you tend to learn much more. Here’s a truth I’ve not heard in any of the stories about Caitlyn/Bruce: Jenner is getting the biggest pay-out ever given by the E! cable network for any reality show they’ve ever had…five million dollars.

That’s a lot of perfume, make-up and hormone injections. It could also help out his/her financial picture in the future should he ever be charged in a February 2015 car accident which injured 5 and killed one woman. Jenner has been named in a wrongful death lawsuit by that woman’s stepchildren because they say he was driving recklessly and ran into the back end of Kimberly Howe’s vehicle on February 7th and pushed her car into the path of an oncoming SUV. Yes, it’s possible they filed the suit after finding out about the 5 million dollars Jenner would get for his reality show. Nevertheless, it’s an interesting twist to the story.

I have no intention of watching the reality show about Jenner. Watching the promo in preparation for this post was more than enough. What he wants to do is his business, but by agreeing to turn it into a reality show, he makes it all of ours too. Like most of our personal decisions, they rarely affect just us. They influence those around us as well. To prove my point, do a search for Linda Thompson, the actress who was the second wife of Bruce Jenner and gave birth to two of his children. Some sites have already changed her life history to say that she was “married to Caitlyn Jenner from 1981-1985.”

Well, no she wasn’t. That would mean she was a lesbian at some point, and there’s no evidence of that in her past. When you embrace one thing (Bruce is a lady), you then have to believe other things that just aren’t so. Words mean things. Re-defining them is like building a house of cards. When you take one away at any point, the entire thing comes crashing down.

It seems our society is hell-bent on re-defining things, in this case gender—femininity in particular. Even if the Bruce/Caitlyn reality show has a finale where he decides to go all the way and have “the surgery”, it won’t change anything. He can’t get around the fact that he has the “Y” chromosome. He was born a male, he’ll die a male…and that’s the cold, hard truth. There are no purple penguins, and it’s not wrong or offensive for children to call each other “boys” or “girls”.

If this makes me a “hater”, then okay. I hate seeing people live in deception. I hate when people are used or are allowing themselves to be used for money, fame or ratings. And I hate being told that I should be thinking and seeing one thing, when my own senses tell me the opposite.  Must we all go along on this magic carpet ride with Caitlyn and the media?

No. We don’t.

It's Pat: a character created by Julia Sweeney for Saturday Night Live back when people could still laugh at gender-bending.

It’s Pat: a character created by Julia Sweeney for Saturday Night Live back when people could still laugh at gender-bending.

Fundamental Change: Taming the Internet

In yet another example of fixing something until it’s broke, the Obama administration’s Federal Communications Commission is set to vote today on new rules for the internet. The last truly free place to express yourself without having to go through some agency of the government is set to become the next messy bureaucracy.

The plan, in short, is to classify the internet as a utility under the Communications Act of 1934. Progressives are so forward-thinking, aren’t they? Who else could conceive of regulating 21st century technology under the same provisions that began regulating telephone usage more than 80 years ago? The process could give federal regulators the power to impose “net neutrality” rules, which would prevent internet access providers from favoring some content and applications over others.

The details of the plan have not been made public, and are said to outline more than 330 pages of details on how best to regulate the internet to keep it “fair and open”. It seems to be that already, and the president and FCC appear to be trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist yet—and may never exist.

Right now, when someone gets an idea for an online business or a blog, they can just do it. There is no going to any government representative for licensing, paying taxes, etc. Imagine the possibility of there being an Internet Commission or Department of the Internet which would charge licensing fees for various internet activities. Citizen journalists sharing information and giving opinions on current events could have to go through licensing to be able to report on important topics that mainstream media refuse to cover. These are just a couple nightmare-ish possibilities that could be in our future if we don’t make our voices heard today.

Billionaire businessman Mark Cuban (who’s not known for being particularly conservative) explained in an interview with Glenn Beck this week why net neutrality needs to be defeated. (WATCH HERE).

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and chairman of the House Oversight Committee sent a letter to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler asking him to temporarily postpone the vote and release the plans to the public for 30 days to give people time to look at it. However, as of this writing, his request has fallen on deaf ears.

Because of the hasty and clandestine nature of the vote that’s taking place (by 5 un-elected FCC officials), many are comparing “net neutrality” to the passage of Obamacare in 2010. Do we really want to give the government more power over something that is this big, this important for making all voices heard? Do we really want to give control over the internet to the same people who couldn’t successfully launch a website themselves? (i.e. healthcare.gov). We need more talk—not less. This should be something liberals, conservatives and everyone in between should able to agree upon.

Remember…if you like your health insurance you can keep it. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor…if you like your blog, you can keep your blog.

***UPDATE 2/26/15 4:55 pm CENTRAL TIME:  THE FCC VOTED ALONG PARTY LINES TO APPROVE NET NEUTRALITY.  LAWSUITS ARE EXPECTED***

IF YOU WANT TO SIGN THE PETITION AGAINST THE FCC’S NET NEUTRALITY GO HERE.

fcc

Fifty Shades of Gray—One Shade of Red

Some parents may be hot under the collar this week as the premier of the overly-hyped film Fifty Shades of Grey hits movie theaters this Valentine’s weekend. It’s not the film itself, but the fact that the books that spawned it are being used for everything from middle school assignments (yes- you read that right) to promoting sexual activity to young teens.

In what can only be called a bizarre class assignment, some middle schoolers in a Pennsylvania district were given a worksheet: a word search puzzle with words “inspired” by the film/book. WTVR reported on the incident and had blacked out several of the words they deemed too inappropriate for TV. You can see that worksheet on their website if you must, but many of the non-blackened words are pretty risqué, especially for young, impressionable minds. The racy worksheet was brought to the attention of James Carter, whose 13-year-old son attends Monessen Middle School.

Oddly enough, it was passed out to 5 eighth graders, Carter’s son being one, and he showed it to his father. Carter said he asked who gave it to him and was told that a teacher had passed it out. The irate parent was not given any information by the school as to how this happened. School leaders aren’t talking, saying that it’s a personnel issue, and the head of the school board told WTVR that an investigation will take place.

In possibly a more troubling case, Planned Parenthood has been caught (again) on tape telling young girls they must read the erotic book. The non-profit pro-life group Live Action, headed by Lila Rose, has become known for sending hidden cameras into Planned Parenthood offices all over the country and catching them in some less-than-stellar moments.

In this case, undercover Live Action investigators posed as under-age clients seeking guidance about sexual matters, eventually bringing up issues that are the main theme of Fifty Shades. Some PP staffers loved the books, and some were not big fans, but at least a couple of them encouraged girls they believed to be 15 or 16 years old to read them.

The books have been described as “mommy porn”, so why promote them to minors? Lila Rose has a theory, and she wrote about it in the New York Post last year. Basically, she says, it’s good for Planned Parenthood’s business. Encouraging young girls to experiment with all manner of sexual experiences keeps them coming back for their other services like getting help for STD’s, and especially in bringing them back for their biggest money-maker: abortion. Planned Parenthood wants your daughters to know they’re there for them, especially when “accidents” happen.

Rose also mentions how dangerous it can be for girls to abide by Planned Parenthood’s notion of having a “safe word” they can use with their partners to let them know things are getting out of hand and they want it to stop. She related this to some disturbing scenes from the book when she writes, “In short, Planned Parenthood counselors told our investigators that “no” doesn’t mean “no” anymore. It, and everything else, means “yes” — or at least it does to those looking for a quick sexual fix. Note that in one “50 Shades” scene, Grey explicitly ignores the safe word and even punishes Ana for trying to use it. In several others, he shows outright contempt for the girl’s limits and has his way with her, to the point where the sex scenes read like rapes.”

So this is a movie that’s coming out for Valentine’s Day? It’s supposed to be a day known for love, not lust…and real romance—not selfish acts of dominance over another person. In the real world, young women are being trafficked and sold into lives similar to the one chosen freely by the character in Fifty Shades. Sadly, the film—like the book series—will be a huge hit.

Fathers and father figures raising young girls should use this weekend to give their daughters a different message. So dads, take your girls to lunch and show them how they should expect to be treated by the boys they date…tell her anything less isn’t good enough.

teach our daughters

Movie Review- “America”

AMERICA_DesktopWidescreenThe creator of one of the highest-grossing documentaries in box-office history has paired once again with an Academy-Award-winning producer to bring another unsettling scenario to the big screen as we prepare to celebrate America’s 238th birthday.

Dinesh D’Souza (2016: Obama’s America) and Gerald Molen (Shindler’s List) present viewers with the question: What if the United States of America had never been? In fact, the movie’s subtitle invites us to “imagine the world without her.”

The film first faces the critics of America head-on by breaking down the arguments that the radical left has made against this country: it was founded on racism, genocide, oppression and theft. These beliefs are behind their desire to see the country get taken down a few pegs—to a point where we’re no longer a leader in the world. D’Souza interviews those who hold these beliefs (and have passed them onto younger generations), like Ward Churchill. He was a college professor best known for his disparaging remarks about the victims of 9/11 shortly after that event. Sitting through this portion of the film gave me some idea of what it must be like to be a conservative student on nearly any college campus today, where history, economics and pretty much any other subject are presented from the point of view of the left.

This was really a strong point of the movie. By setting up the fact there’s been an effort among many in our society who wish to undermine the American idea—and backing it up with interviews—D’Souza shows us that not everyone who lives here or who was born here loves it here. This is important to establish up front, as he then goes one by one, refuting each claim made against America. He does this quite well using news clips and more interviews that give the story of America the balance it deserves.

America isn’t just a series of news clips and sit-down interviews, however. Dramatic re-enactments are used effectively throughout the movie to bring moments in history, and those who made history, to life. We see General George Washington commanding his troops; President Abraham Lincoln giving his last speech before being gunned down by an assassin’s bullet; former slave-turned-abolitionist Frederick Douglass, and the experience of one Vietnam POW at the Hanoi Hilton.

D’Souza and co-director John Sullivan (2016: Obama’s America) are skilled storytellers, as they bring the audience into the past, all the while making connections to today. Anyone who may not be familiar with the teachings of Saul Alinsky will come away from this film with a better understanding of who he was and how his radical views have come full circle in the current occupant of the White House, as well as the woman who hopes to follow him (Hillary Clinton).

While watching America, you get a sense of how important it is to learn American history, and how much has already been lost due to revisionism. After all, you can’t really know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been. D’Souza maintains that America is now at a crossroads. As other generations have had to step up to preserve and protect the nation at various points in time, it’s now up to us to restore America. As he says in the film, “We need another Washington or Lincoln or Reagan…but we don’t have them. We have us.”

America is a feast for history lovers, but it’s also got a great soundtrack. Stay through the end credits and enjoy an uplifting—and rocking—new version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” by a group I’ve never heard of called Madison Rising. They call themselves “America’s most patriotic rock band” and it’s worth sticking around for a listen. You may even want to download it to accompany you on your Independence Day Weekend activities.

 

Icecapades

Perhaps the biggest untold news story of 2014 has already happened—and the year is barely a week old.  If you rely on the mainstream American press for your information, you probably heard something about a group of “tourists” who were stuck on a boat surrounded by ice in Antarctica recently.  These weary travelers were, fortunately, rescued…and that’s a good thing.  And then the rescuers had to be rescued by a small ice-breaking vessel of the U.S. Coast Guard.  That’s what you would have heard from the alphabet soup of media talking heads, and you may have been wondering:  why would anyone go “touring” or “cruising” in Antarctica?

Of course, no one would, unless they were on a mission…and that’s the part of the news story the American media completely dodged.  You would have had to go to an overseas news source early on to get the real story—the “why”—because calling those folks stuck in ice “tourists” is about as believable as Gilligan, Mary Ann, Ginger and The Rest bringing everything they owned on a three hour tour.

The missing piece to the puzzle was that the passengers on the Russian ship Akademik Shokalskiy were global warming scientists/ researchers who went there to prove their theory that the polar ice caps are melting, the polar bears have nowhere to hang out, and eventually, there really will be oceanfront property in Arizona.  As the BBC put it toward the very end of their article about the event, “One of the aims was to track how quickly the Antarctic’s sea ice was disappearing.”

Apparently, it isn’t disappearing quickly enough.  Though it’s summertime in Antarctica, the hapless true believers of man-made global warming were stuck on ice from Christmas Eve through the New Year holiday.  As New Years’ revelers shivered in frigid temperatures in Times Square, the researchers on board Akademik Shokalskiy ushered in 2014 by singing a song they made up about their misadventures.

This week has seen most of our nation gripped in the jaws of the ominous-sounding “polar vortex”.  Although this is not a new weather phenomenon, the mainstream media couldn’t seem to get enough of it, making it sound as if we’re seeing things that haven’t happened before because of man-made global warming.  The White House came out with its own video to attempt to defy logic with its “the-earth-is-still-on-fire” alarm “The Polar Vortex Explained in 2 Minutes”.  Basically, the guy in the video tells us not to believe our own lying eyes (and frozen other parts) because this polar vortex proves the earth is really getting warmer.  These people need to get their stories straight.  Either the earth is warming or its cooling, but it can’t be doing both—in all parts of the earth, at the same time.  For a more scientific and level-headed look at the recent cold snap, check this out.

The news media should be focusing on other things rather than why winter is cold and summer is hot.  But certain things they must hide—like the mission of the Antarctic ship stuck in ice.  As the public relations arm of the current control-obsessed White House, the “WHY?” of that story makes them look even more ridiculous than most of us already believe them to be.

Perhaps no one summed up the events surrounding the Akademik Shokalskiy better than satirical columnist and author Frank J. Fleming when he said this:  “We’re never going to get good data on global warming if everyone keeps getting trapped in ice.”

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