Originally posted on Refugee Resettlement Watch:
I’m speechless! After years of reading one fluffy-puffy piece after another about refugees seeing their first snow, we are beginning to see major mainstream publications (Christian Science Monitorin this case) reporting on the struggle small towns are having with the huge numbers of refugees the US State Department and its contractors*** are dispersing across America.
Pay attention Spartanburg, SC and any other town contemplating “welcoming” refugees!
The NYT might still be hiding the source of the influxby not reporting on the refugee program, but other media is not so deceptive. By the way, I expect every person who read the NYT story yesterday, scratched their heads and wondered how so many Somalis got here!
From the Christian Science Monitor entitled, ‘For small-town America, new immigrants pose linguistic, cultural challenges:’
In 2012, Burmese children drowned near Marshalltown resettlement site. http://forefugees.com/2012/07/07/three-karenni-children-drown-iowa-river-in-marshalltown-iowa/
Marshalltown, Iowa — The voice was…
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Indiana To Give Religious Business Owners The Right To Discriminate Against Gays
TUESDAY, MARCH 24, 2015 ··
Indiana is set to become the next state to pass a bill that would give business owners the ability to evade liability under laws banning discrimination based on sexual orientation by claiming that complying with the law violates their religious beliefs:
Controversial religious freedom legislation that could protect business owners who don’t want to provide services for same-sex couples is poised to become law in Indiana.
The Republican-controlled Indiana House approved the measure Monday on a 63-31 vote, largely along party lines. Five Republicans joined 26 Democrats in opposing the bill.
The vote likely clears a path for the hot-button legislation to become law. The Senate already approved a slightly different version of the bill last month and Senate author Dennis Kruse, R-Auburn, said he plans to concur with the House version, possibly later this week.
The bill will then go to Gov. Mike Pence, who said Monday he plans to sign the legislation.
Senate Bill 101 would prevent state and local governments from “substantially burdening” a person’s exercise of religion unless the government can prove it has a compelling interest and is doing so in the least restrictive means.
Supporters say the measure would protect people and business owners with strong religious beliefs from government intrusion.
“It’s important that we allow our citizens to hold religious beliefs, maybe even those we might be appalled by, and to be able to express those,” said Rep. Tom Washburne, R-Inglefield.
Opponents say it would license discrimination, particularly against gays and lesbians.
“It basically says to a group of people you’re second rate, you don’t matter, and if you walk into my store, I don’t have to serve you,” said Minority Leader Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City.
Social conservatives have pushed hard for such measures across the country following recent federal court rulings that legalized same-sex marriage in Indiana and other states.
The proposal is modeled on a 22-year-old federal law known as the Religious Freedom and Restoration Act. That law played a key role in the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that allowed Hobby Lobby and other closely held corporations with religious objections to opt out of an Affordable Care Act requirement that they cover certain contraceptives for women.
Nineteen other states have adopted similar “religious freedom” laws, and several others are considering legislation.
Gay rights groups and several major Indiana employers — including Salesforce, Cummins, and Eskenazi Health — have opposed the measure, fearing it will encourage discrimination and hurt Indiana’s reputation as a welcoming state.
This is a legal and political battle that has been heating up as the legal battle over same-sex marriage has moved forward and the forces opposed to marriage equality have suffered loss after loss in the courthouse and at the ballot box. Two years ago a florist in Washington state was charged with violations of laws forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation when she refused to provide services for a wedding between two gay men. A Colorado baker ended up in similar legal trouble last year over his refusal to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding ceremony. In New York, a couple that owned a farm which they rented out for wedding ceremonies and receptions was charged with violations of state anti-discrimination laws when they refused to rent the facility to a lesbian couple. A New Jersey churchfound itself in similar legal trouble over its refusal to provide access to a beach facility it owned and made available to the public generally to a gay couple for their ceremony. The most famous recent case of this type, of course, involved a photographer in New Mexico who refused to provide services for a same-sex wedding and was found to have violated a municipal anti-discrimination law. The New Mexico Supreme Courtupheld that ruling, and the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal that was filed in that case. Unsurprisingly, these cases have raised much hire among those on the religious right, with claims that they involve attacks on religious liberty and fevered speculation about whether religious liberty will “survive” the legalization of same-sex marriage.
In response to these cases, Republicans in general and religious conservatives in particular have embarked on a vigorous effort to pass legislation at the state level that would essentially give business owners immunity from laws forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation if they claim a religious basis for their objection. Such a bill was passed by a wide majority in Arizona’s legislature last year, but failed to become law thanks only to the fact that former Governor Jan Brewer decided to veto the bill after the state came under a high degree of criticism and national businesses, including the National Football League, made clear that such a bill would cause them to reconsider the state as a site for conventions and events in the future. There hasn’t been quite the national uproar about the Indiana bill, at least not yet, but Governor Mike Pence seems committed to signing the bill into law. So, absent a court challenge down the line, it appears that Indiana will join nineteen other states in giving business owners who claim to have religious objections to homosexuality an exception to an otherwise generally applicable law that no other business owner in the Hoosier State would be entitled to. This is a bad law, and bad precedent.
In many respects, of course, the Indiana law is similar to the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act that was at the center of last year’s Hobby Lobby case. That law was passed in response to the Supreme Court’s 1990 ruling Employment Division v. Smith, in which the Court ruled that a Native American could be denied unemployment benefits when he was fired after failing a drug test notwithstanding the fact that the drug in question was used as part of a Native American religious ceremony. Mainstream religious groups reacted negatively to the ruling, fearing that it could lead to a whole host of situations where pastors and parishioners would be punished for following their faith and, thanks to their lobbying, the RFRA was passed overwhelmingly by a Democratic Congress and signed into law by President Clinton. In the Hobby Lobby case, of course, the Supreme Court ruled that the RFRA barred the Federal Government from forcing a religious employer from providing coverage for certain types of birth control as part of their employee health plan. As I said at the time the decision was handed down, it was rather apparent that the majority’s reading of the law and it’s application to the facts of that case was correct. However, there is also a rather persuasive case that the RFRA itself is unconstitutional as an establishment of religion barred under the First Amendment.
State laws such as the one set to be passed in Indiana suffer from the same defects as the federal RFRA, and they are also particularly bad policy even if they are constitutional. At the outset, it’s worth noting that there is a sound libertarian case to be made against public accommodation laws in general that rests on the idea of private property rights and, indeed, ideally businesses and customers ought to be free to do business, or not do business, with whomever they wish for whatever reasons they wish. At the same time, though, I recognize the fact that there were very good reasons based in the 14th Amendment and the history of post Civil War America for the public accommodations laws that were passed at the Federal and state level in the wake of the Civil Rights Movement. Furthermore, it’s rather apparent that those laws are not going to be repealed any time soon, and it’s not entirely clear that doing so wouldn’t lead to a return of some kind of Jim Crow like system in at least some parts of the country.
Leaving that argument aside, though, there is simply no persuasive case based in individual rights for the types of laws being advanced in Indiana and elsewhere in response to the rapid legalization of same-sex marriage. These laws are not based in recognizing property rights, nor are they really about protecting anything approaching religious liberty. The last time I checked, the Bible didn’t say anything about how to run a flower shop, for example, nor did it say that believers should not do business with people they think are acting immorally. Instead, these laws are about creating special rights for a specific group of people that give them an exemption from laws that are otherwise applicable to the rest of the public. That’s not libertarian in any sense of the word, and it doesn’t really help to expand individual liberty. Religious liberty is an important concept, and the law should not discriminate against people based on their faith nor should it prevent them from practicing that faith, but that doesn’t mean that their faith gives them an exemption from laws that are applicable to anyone else. If Republicans in Indiana and elsewhere are as outraged about public accommodation laws as they say they are, then let them work to repeal those laws across the board. Otherwise, creating special rights for a small segment of society is quite simply hypocritical and discriminatory.
Originally posted on Refugee Resettlement Watch:
This starts out as the usual feel-good fluffy-puffy story about a happy Iraqi refugee landing in Detroit, Michigan, but there are some very interesting nuggets of information that appear mid-story.
From the National Journal:
Detroit’s suburbs have absorbed tens of thousands of Iraqi refugees in recent years after violence erupted in the wake of the war. The established Arab community in Detroit has made it the top destination for Iraqi refugees—and that, in turn, has made Michigan one of the states receiving the largest influx of refugees.
Protestors in Dearborn: A large number of Dearborn’s Muslims are on US Terror Watch List. From Jihad Watch http://www.jihadwatch.org/2014/08/dearborn-residents-on-terrorist-watch-list-second-only-to-new-york
From 2010 to 2014, Michigan saw a 38 percent increase in the number of refugees moving to the state, according to data from the Health and Human Services Department. The vast majority are fleeing Iraq, where they faced violence and retaliation for working…
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AMEN, sometimes as Christians we fall but we will always have GOD to pick us up and give us strength to endure the world. Very good post and am re blogging Thanks and Bless you , RAY
Originally posted on altruistico:
The statement “the Bible is our only rule for faith and practice” appears in many doctrinal statements. Sometimes, it takes a similar form, stating that the Bible is “the final authority,” “the only infallible rule,” or “the only certain rule.” This sentiment, whatever the wording, is a way for Bible-believing Christians to declare their commitment to the written Word of God and their independence from other would-be authorities.
The statement that the Bible is the “only rule for faith and practice” is rooted in the sufficiency of Scripture, as revealed in 2 Timothy 3:16–17: “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” Because God is sovereign, His Word is the absolute authority in our lives, and by it God equips us for His service. As A. A. Hodge…
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What the hell is wrong with people ? Where are the heroes? I know they are the crooks, thieves, murderers rapist , trash, and I blame parents, our wonderful government, public non education. I am amazed with the attitudes of people , I believe that you can put more trust in dogs than people . I am sorry that you are being called n words, no reason for that at all , unless you are being one as some in Ferguson, I still cannot see any logic behind all the turmoil in the world MAY GOD HELP US ALL. Berkeley Black Student Union Wants Building Renamed For Cop-Killer
The University of California Berkeley’s Black Student Union has issued a list of demands to the administration that, if not met, BSU says, will demonstrate that the school “has not prioritized the dire needs of black students on this campus.” Among the demands is the renaming of one building after Assat Shakur, a convicted cop-killer and FBI-designated Black Liberation Army terrorist.
The demands follow the hanging of effigies depicting lynchings in December by a group of social justice artists who described themselves as a “Bay Area collective of queer, black and PoC artists.” Since the demonstration, BSU and Chancellor Nick Dirks have been in dialog about how to improve the recruitment and retention of African American students, which constitute only 3 percent of the student body currently. Recently BSU released a list of demands for the administration, which includes the hiring of two black admissions members, two psychologists who will be able to sympathize with the “racially hostile” climate of the campus, and the creation of black student development center.
Also included on the list is a demand that has many stunned: that the current home of the Ethnic Studies, Women’s Studies and African American Studies programs, Barrows Hall, be renamed for Shakur. WND provides some background on the fugitive cop-killer Shakur:
Shakur, whose real name is Joanne Chesimard, was convicted in 1977 for the 1973 murder of New Jersey state trooper Werner Foerster during a traffic stop, where, during an altercation, she took the officer’s gun and shot him twice in the head as he lay on the ground.
Shakur, a member of the Black Liberation Army, escaped from prison in New Jersey in 1979 and resurfaced in Cuba in 1984, where she was given political asylum. The BLA is credited with killing more than a dozen police officers in the 1970s and 1980s.
Shakur, placed on the FBI’s Most-Wanted Terrorist list in 2013, is the aunt of late rapper, Tupac Shakur. There is currently a $2,000,000 reward for her capture.
Despite the conviction and her current fugitive status, Shakur portrays herself as a victim. In December, Shakur published an open letter describing herself as a “20th century escaped slave,” who was forced, due to “government persecution,” to “flee from the political repression, racism and violence that dominate the US government’s policy towards people of color.”
The students gave Dirks the deadline of Tuesday, March 17 to reply, saying in a press release that if he did not it would reveal that he has not “prioritized the dire needs of black students on this campus.”
A spokesman for the chancellor said that the issue of black student recruitment and retention were addressed in a letter outlining black student-oriented initiatives sent last week.
The demand for the renaming of Barrows Hall after Shakur went unanswered.
Upset about the administration’s failure to address each of their specific demands, Berkeley’s BSU has vowed to continue to pressure the university. “We will persevere until we get what we need and what we deserve,” said BSU’s co-chair of political affairs.
by Lonely Conservative • March 17, 2015 • 0 Comments
The creeps at the Environmental Protection Agency want hotels to start monitoring the length of guests’ showers. They’re so interested that they’re spending thousands of taxpayer dollars to develop the monitoring technology.
The agency is spending $15,000 to create a wireless system that will track how much water a hotel guest uses to get them to “modify their behavior.”
“Hotels consume a significant amount of water in the U.S. and around the world,” an EPA grant to the University of Tulsa reads. “Most hotels do not monitor individual guest water usage and as a result, millions of gallons of potable water are wasted every year by hotel guests.”
“The proposed work aims to develop a novel low cost wireless device for monitoring water use from hotel guest room showers,” it said. “This device will be designed to fit most new and existing hotel shower fixtures and will wireless transmit hotel guest water usage data to a central hotel accounting system.”
The funding is going toward creating a prototype and market analysis for the device. The goal of the project is to change the behavior of Americans when they stay at hotels.
People are always outraged over petty little things, but barely bat an eye at these attempts by government bureaucrats to control every aspect of our lives. I have a better idea ,why do they not control the turkey shit at turkey farms , every year people cannot go outside and enjoy springtime in rural America because of the horrific smell. They cannot open a window. The epa needs to control the amount of government air flights such as Obama and what’s her name have to fly in 2 different planes because of scheduling conflicts BULLSHIT , admit it they do not like each other.
“CONSERVATISM, RACISM AND LOW IQs
“Bright Minds and Dark Attitudes” is a study performed by researchers at Brock University, and it caused quite the commotion when its results were released. The researchers found that having lower general intelligence in childhood could predict conservative and racist ideas as an adult. That’s right: having a low IQ score makes you more likely to vote conservative… and be a racist.
Now this isn’t to say that all Republicans are stupid. On the contrary: I fully believe that rich Republicans are some of the smartest people in the world. They literally trick poor Republicans into thinking it’s the big bad government’s fault that they’re poor, and in doing so, they make these people vote against their own best interests.
Even though being conservative doesn’t make you stupid, there’s no doubt that being stupid makes you more likely to be conservative.
FOX NEWS MAKES YOU LESS INFORMED
It’s not like we really needed a study to tell us this, but the survey “What You Know Depends on What You Watch,” undertaken by Fairleigh Dickinson University, found that watching Fox News results in knowing less about the world. Researchers asked 1,185 respondents which news shows they consumed and then asked general questions about newsworthy events.”
Anyone who still believes Obama is not an antisemite is either antisemitic himself or has eaten an overabundance of mushrooms.
“US fails to renew emergency oil supply pact with Israel,“ Globes.co.il, March 16, 2015
The agreement guaranteeing Israel’s oil supplies in wartime was first signed in 1975.
The US has not renewed a historic agreement under which it guaranteed a supply of oil to Israel in emergencies, that is, instances in which Israel might be cut off from its regular commercial sources of oil because of war or closure of sea lanes. The agreement expired in November 2014, and since then the US administration has done nothing to renew it, Washington sources told “Globes”.
The sources said that it was not clear whether this was a deliberate step by the administration, stemming perhaps from renewed friction between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the White House, or a matter of bureaucratic inertia in Washington.
The agreement was first signed in 1975 during the Ford administration, two years after the Yom Kippur War and following the second disengagement agreement between Israel and Egypt in September 1975, under which Israel agreed to withdraw from the Egyptian oil fields in Sinai. The agreement by the US to guarantee Israel’s oil supply in emergencies was one of the most important of the incentives that motivated Israel to give up the oil fields.
In 1979, during the Carter administration, Israel and Egypt signed the Camp David Agreements, which were accompanied by two agreements between the US and Israel in the format of the 1975 agreement. In these agreements, the US gave Israel guarantees that it would have access to American oil if it was unable to supply the demand of its internal energy market because of war constraints. The agreements even stipulated that the US would assist in transporting oil to Israel if Israel was unable to procure oil tankers on the open market. The two agreements were eventually consolidated into one document. The agreement was set to last for fifteen years, and was supposed to have expired on September 25, 1994. At that point, the Clinton administration extended the agreement for ten years, and in 2004 it was extended for a further ten years. As mentioned, it expired in November 2014, and nothing has been done about renewing it.
Now, apparently after a push by the pro-Israel lobby in Washington AIPAC, a group of Democratic and Republican senators has written to Secretary of State John Kerry calling on the administration to renew the historic agreement. The letter is signed by Lisa Murkowski, who is chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and Mark Warner, the senior Democratic member of the committee, and four other senators.
Israel has never invoked the agreement, but Israel sources say that its importance lies in its very existence. An Israeli source compared the oil supply agreement to the loan guarantee agreement between the two countries that enables Israel to obtain commercial loans at low rates of interest. “Israel used the loan guarantee agreement very sparingly, but it is important that the loan guarantees agreement should exist, and the same applies to the energy agreement that guaranteed a regular supply of oil,” the source said, “We never used it, but it’s important that it should lie signed in a drawer.”
Originally posted on American Infidels:
Iran is the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.
Hussein Obama has apparently joined the axis of evil…and that will be his legacy.
Iran (Shia) is fighting the Islamic State (Sunni) for control of the region and beyond.
The enemy of my enemy is my enemy, too.
US intel report scrapped Iran from list of terror threats
Softened assessment, submitted in February, comes amid marathon nuclear talks, shared interests vis-a-vis the Islamic State
By Times of Israel staff March 16, 2015
Members of the Iran’s Revolutionary Guard march during an annual military parade marking the 34th anniversary of outset of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, in front of the mausoleum of the late revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini just outside Tehran, Iran, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014 (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
An annual report delivered recently to the US Senate by James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence, removed Iran and Hezbollah from its…
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