By Olivia St. John
In a Feb. 7 press release, a broad coalition of Christian grass-roots organizations boldly banded together urging parents to either homeschool their children or place them in Christian schools. Prominent pro-family crusaders like Phyllis Schlafly, once a proponent of public school reform, are saying it's time to exit public schools.
Indeed, the situation is so serious that in states around the country, sexual material is being taught to children as young as kindergarten age. Barb Anderson, research and policy analyst with the Minnesota Family Council, details lewd content being taught in public schools in a policy paper titled “The Birds & Bees Project: Gay Sex Ed for Kids.” According to Anderson, a presenter at the annual Minnesota School Health Education Conference stated, “When speaking to teens you must tell them there is no right or wrong and no good or bad choices.”
Anderson goes on to say that on page 152 (A Day at the Clinic) of a 187-page guide distributed by the Birds & Bees Project, health educators encourage pregnant teens “to practice making an appointment to have an abortion … [and] that they can seek a judicial bypass to circumvent the Parental Notification law.”…
Read more →
By Raymond Richman, Howard Richman and Jesse Richman
The United States tax system has a tax break that encourages giving to charity, a tax break that encourages people to buy their own homes – and a tax break that encourages foreign governments to take over U.S. corporations. Most people know about the first two, but few, outside of the IRS, are aware of the third. It exempts foreign governments from paying any U.S. taxes on dividends, interest or any other income earned from their U.S. investments. Other governments have the same policy. It's a sort of gentleman's agreement among governments: We won't tax you if you won't tax us.
The problem with this “gentleman's agreement” is that it is one-sided. The U.S. government has virtually no investments abroad, while other governments are putting together huge bankrolls to invest in the United States. Morgan Stanley estimates that Sovereign Wealth Funds, the funds set up by foreign governments to invest in foreign equities, currently have $2.5 trillion in assets and will have $12 trillion by 2015. As a result of the giant U.S. trade deficits ($713 billion in 2007), foreign governments have huge surpluses of dollars with which to buy American businesses …
Read more →
By Anne Broache
Editor's note: A May deadline looms as just one flash point in a political showdown between Homeland Security and states that oppose Real ID demands. This is the third in a four-part series examining the confrontation.
No television, no wedding or family photographs, and definitely no image of herself on her driver's license: That was the evout Christian life that Nebraska resident Frances Quaring was trying to lead.
Which is why, after the state of Nebraska rejected her request for a license-without-a-photograph in the mid-1980s, Quaring sued the state in a landmark case that ended up at the U.S. Supreme Court. She won, with the justices agreeing that preserving her freedom of religion outweighed the state's interest in requiring an ID photograph.
More than two decades after the Quaring case, approximately a dozen states now offer religious exceptions when issuing driver's licenses. But because of a federal law called the Real ID Act that takes effect on May 11, residents of those states who have pictureless licenses could expect problems flying on commercial airliners and entering federal buildings, including some Social Security and Veterans Affairs offices.
The new rules could affect thousands of Americans in states including …
Read more →
Israeli reporter challenges McCain to polygraph after spat over interview
By David Bedein
Senator John McCain and his Mideast policy inclinations are being challenged over an interview that he granted two years ago to Amir Oren, a journalist from the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, on May 1, 2006, in which McCain declared that his administration “would send “the smartest guy I know” to the Middle East: “Brent Scowcroft, or Jim Baker though I know that you in Israel don't like Baker.”
McCain reportedly added: “I would expect concessions and sacrifices by both sides.”
When Oren asked McCain if that meant a “movement toward the June 4, 1967 armistice lines, with minor modifications,” the reporter wrote, “McCain nodded in the affirmative.”
To deflect criticism that he has encountered on the 2008 campaign trail, the McCain campaign has been quoting an article by John B. Judis, senior editor at The New Republic, who wrote in an article in that publication on October 25, 2006 that McCain was “miffed at his portrayal in Haaretz,” saying that “after reading the Haaretz article and subsequent report in The Jewish Press [in New York],” he felt the need to “clear up several serious misimpressions.” McCain said that …
Read more →
Veterans have no legal right to specific types of medical care, the Bush administration argues in a lawsuit accusing the government of illegally denying mental health treatment to some troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
The arguments, filed Wednesday in federal court in San Francisco, strike at the heart of a lawsuit filed on behalf of veterans that claims the health care system for returning troops provides little recourse when the government rejects their medical claims.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is making progress in increasing its staffing and screening veterans for combat-related stress, Justice Department lawyers said. But their central argument is that Congress left decisions about who should get health care, and what type of care, to the VA and not to veterans or the courts.
A federal law providing five years of care for veterans from the date of their discharge establishes “veterans' eligibility for health care, but it does not create an entitlement to any particular medical service,” government lawyers said.
They said the law entitles veterans only to “medical care which the secretary (of Veterans Affairs) determines is needed, and only to the extent funds … are available.”
The argument drew a sharp …
Read more →
Islamic leaders in Toronto: Hundreds
in polygamous unions get extra welfare
By TOM GODFREY, SUN MEDIA
Hundreds of GTA Muslim men in polygamous marriages — some with a harem of wives — are receiving welfare and social benefits for each of their spouses, thanks to the city and province, Muslim leaders say.
Mumtaz Ali, president of the Canadian Society of Muslims, said wives in polygamous marriages are recognized as spouses under the Ontario Family Law Act, providing they were legally married under Muslim laws abroad.
“Polygamy is a regular part of life for many Muslims,” Ali said yesterday. “Ontario recognizes religious marriages for Muslims and others.”
He estimates “several hundred” GTA husbands in polygamous marriages are receiving benefits. Under Islamic law, a Muslim man is permitted to have up to four spouses.
However, city and provincial officials said legally a welfare applicant can claim only one spouse. Other adults living in the same household can apply for welfare independently.
The average recipient with a child can receive about $1,500 monthly, city officials said.
FAMILY LAW ACT
In addressing the issue of polygamous marriages, the preamble to the Ontario Family Law Act states: “In the definition of 'spouse,' a reference to …
Read more →