Archive for January, 2006

Marriage Defenders Lose Ground in Maryland, Move Forward in Virginia

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Keep praying that God will open people’s eyes to the sin of homosexuality.

(AgapePress) – A Christian activist says a dark shadow has been cast over traditional marriage in Maryland. Last week, a trial court struck down a state law banning same-sex “marriage” on the basis that it violated the Equal Rights Amendment, or ERA.
In 1972 voters in Maryland ratified the ERA, which stated that a person should not be denied rights because of their sex. The next year the General Assembly passed a law recognizing only traditional marriage. Now, however, Judge M. Brooke Murdock has ruled that the state’s marriage law violated the ERA.
Tres Kerns, executive director of
VoteMarriage.org, says a poll taken last year showed overwhelming support for traditional marriage. “We reached over 20,000 homes in the state and literally over 70 percent of them agreed with it,” he says. “Even in what we would call the most liberal area, which is Rockville, Maryland, 55 percent of the people said they believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.”
Hence, Kerns contends, “It’s clear what the citizens of Maryland want.” He says the case will be appealed and, at the same time, an effort is under way to amend the state constitution to protect traditional marriage.
“We are in a real battle here for our families,” the traditional marriage advocate says. “The family’s been under attack for a long time. You just can’t sit on the sidelines.” Those who are doing that are “acquiescing to the aggressor,” he contends.
“The aggressor is the people who are against the family and want to destroy the family as we know it so they can do whatever they want,” Kerns declares. “It’s what I call sexual anarchy, and we’ve got to stop that.”
Meanwhile, in nearby Virginia, the lengthy, nearly two-year process of amending that state’s constitution took another small step forward as the Senate voted to give Commonwealth citizens the opportunity to weigh in on the definition of marriage.
Victoria Cobb, executive director of the
Family Foundation, is hailing this latest bit of progress in the marriage protection battle. “Virginians will now have nearly ten months to consider this question before casting their ballot in November,” she notes.
However, Cobb points out, “Opponents to traditional marriage are well funded and are already on the offensive. While we have little doubt that the vast majority of Virginians support this amendment and will vote in favor of it in 2006, we will not sit by and allow those opposed to traditional marriage to dominate the debate.”
The Family Foundation spokeswoman says that group has, along with several other pro-family groups in Virginia, helped to create “
VA4Marriage.org” to lead the push to get the state’s marriage amendment passed. The pro-family project includes a website, voter registration and get-out-the-vote efforts, as well as representatives ready to speak on the amendment at community and church meetings. Radio, TV, and newspaper ads are also planned as part of an extensive media campaign.

The Armor of God

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.
Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.
Stand firm therefore, HAVING GIRDED YOUR LOINS WITH TRUTH, and HAVING PUT ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, and having shod YOUR FEET WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Ephesians 6:10-17 (New American Standard Bible)

Response to “Anonymous” to Comments Made About My Article “World Taken by Surprise by Hamas Victory”

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Anonymous said…
“Why should Hamas recognize Israel when they live under occupation? If we had lost WWII and had lived under Nazi occupation since then perhaps we would have similar bad feelings towards Germany. It is sad that the Christian Zionists are destroying our country by behaving in a very un-Christian way and never considering the Palestinian viewpoint. Check out dundeesblog.blogspot.com”

My response:
“Hello anonymous. Thank you for posting on my blog.
Let’s give this situation a rational thought for a moment; put the emotion aside and try to think logically. Let’s start by taking a look at history.

1917-1922: From 1517-1917 Turkey’s Ottoman Empire controlled what is today Lebanon, Syria, and Palestine. During World War I (1914-1918), Turkey supported Germany. When Germany was defeated, so were the Turks. In 1916 control of the southern portion of their Ottoman Empire was “mandated” to France and Britain under the Sykes-Picot Agreement, which divided the Arab region into zones of influence. Lebanon and Syria were assigned to France… and “Palestine” (today’s Jordan, Israel and “West Bank”) was assigned to Great Britain. It is important to mention that “Palestine” is a name that was coined by the Europeans. It did not exist before this point. Because no other group of people had ever established a national homeland here since the Jews had done it 2,000 years before, the British “looked favorably” upon the creation of a Jewish National Homeland throughout all of Palestine. The Jews had already begun mass immigration into Palestine in the 1880’s in an effort to rid the land of swamps and malaria and prepare the rebirth of Israel. This Jewish effort to revitalize the land attracted an equally large immigration of Arabs from neighboring areas, who were drawn by employment opportunities and healthier living conditions.

1923-1947: In 1923, the British divided Palestine into two administrative districts. Jews would be permitted only west of the Jordan River. The British had allocated 75% of the originally proposed Jewish Palestinian homeland to lay the seeds of what would become in 1946 the Arab Palestinian Nation of “Trans-Jordan,” meaning: “across the Jordan River.” The Palestinian Arabs now had their “Arab Palestinian” homeland. The remaining 25% of Palestine (now WEST of the Jordan River) was to be the Jewish Palestinian homeland. However, the Arab population was determined to claim all of Palestine for itself, and wanted to “drive the Jews into the sea.”

Encouraged and incited by growing Arab nationalism throughout the Middle East, the Arabs of that small remaining Palestinian territory west of the Jordan River launched incessant terrorist attacks upon the Jewish Palestinians in an effort to drive them out. The British at first tried to maintain order but soon (due to the large oil deposits being discovered throughout the Arab Middle East) turned a blind eye. It became obvious to the Palestinian Jews that they must fight the Arabs AND drive out the British.

1947-1948: The Palestinian Jews, forced to form an organized defense against the Arabs, formed the Hagana, the beginnings of the Israeli Defense Forces [IDF]. There was also a Jewish underground called the Irgun, led by Menachem Begin (who later became Prime Minister of Israel). Besides fighting the Arabs, the Irgun was instrumental in driving out the pro-Arab British. Finally, in 1947 the British turned the Palestine matter over to the United Nations.The U.N. Resolution 181 partition plan was to divide the remaining 25% of Palestine into a Jewish Palestinian State and a second Arab Palestinian State (Trans-Jordan being the first) based upon population concentration. The Jewish Palestinians accepted the proposal, but the Arab Palestinians rejected it. The Arabs still wanted ALL of Palestine – both east and west of the Jordan River. On May 14, 1948 the Palestinian Jews finally declared their own State of Israel and became “Israelis.” On the next day, Israel was at war with seven neighboring Arab armies: Egypt, Trans-Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Yemen. Most of the Arabs living within the boundaries of the newly declared “ISRAEL” were encouraged to leave by the invading Arab armies to facilitate the slaughter of the Jews and were promised to be given all Jewish property after the victorious Arab armies won the war. When the 19-month war ended, however, Israel won and survived, despite a 1% loss of it’s entire population. Those Arabs who did not run away became today’s Israeli Arab citizens. Those who fled became the seeds of the first wave of “Palestinian Arab refugees.”

1949-1967: The end result of the 1948-49 Israeli War of Independence was the creation of a Jewish state slightly larger than that which was proposed by the United Nations two years before. What remained of that almost-created second Arab Palestinian State was occupied by Egypt (occupying the Gaza Strip) and by Trans-Jordan (occupying Judea-Samaria (the “West Bank” of the Jordan River) and Jerusalem. In the next year (1950) Trans-Jordan formally merged this West Bank territory into itself and granted Jordanian citizenship to all those Arabs who lived there. Since Trans-Jordan was no longer confined to one side of the Jordan River, it renamed itself simply “JORDAN. In the final analysis, the Arabs of Palestine ended up with nearly 85% of the original territory of Palestine. But that was still not 100% and thus the conflict between Arab and Jew for “Palestine” would continue through four more wars and continuous Arab terrorist attacks upon the Israeli citizens. It continues to this very day.From 1948-67 when all of Judea-Samaria (the West Bank, including Jerusalem) came under Arab [Jordanian] control, no effort was made to create a second Palestinian State for the Arabs living there. It seems ironic that Yassir Arafat and his Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), discovered their “ancient” identity and a need for “self-determination” on this very same West Bank ONLY AFTER Israel regained this territory (three years later in 1967) following Jordan’s attempt to destroy Israel. Why was no request ever made upon King Hussein of Jordan when he “occupied” the West Bank? The PLO later went on to become the Palestinian Authority of today.

The 1967 War (Six-Day War): Throughout much of May 1967, the Egyptian, Jordanian and Syrian armies mobilized along Israel’s narrow and seemingly indefensible borders in preparation for a massive invasion to eliminate the State of Israel. But the Israel planned and executed a perfect pre-emptive strike against Egypt. Within two hours, the Egyptian Air Force did not exist. Most of its planes were destroyed while still on the runways! Unaware that the Egyptians had no more air force, King Hussein of Jordan, launched his attack from the West Bank into Israel’s belly while Syrian troops prepared to descend down the Golan Heights mountain range into northern Israel. After ONLY six days grueling warfare, Israel defeated all three Arab armies along three separate fronts, taking control of the entire Sinai Desert from Egypt, the Golan Heights from Syria and the West Bank (including East Jerusalem and its Old City) from Jordan. Most importantly was the return to Israel of its holy 3,000-year-old city of Jerusalem along the western edge of the West Bank.Unfortunately, Israel then became an “occupier” of this “West Bank” and the Gaza Strip along with its 850,000 Palestinian Arabs who were living there. These Arabs would refer to themselves as “refugees” and joined the masses of refugees from the previous war of 1948-49.The Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza Strip were packed and ready to leave following their defeat. Suddenly the victorious IDF General Moshe Dayan persuaded them to stay. Dayan’s plan was to educate them, offer them modern medical treatment, provide them with employment both in the West Bank AND inside Israel Proper, and to live amongst them in hopes of building a bridge to the Arab world.

1982: Israel wanted to gain some international respect, and therefore returned the entire Sinai (oil fields, air bases and endless miles of security buffer) to Egypt. Israel still occupies Syria’s Golan Heights, which had been used solely for terrorist incursions into and artillery bombardment upon Israel’s northern settlements. And of course, Israel still occupies the West Bank with its population of 1,200,000 “Palestinian” Arabs.
(courtesy of Contender Ministries)

You called me a “Christian Zionist”. Let’s look at that term and see how it may apply to me.

According to Wikipedia, “as a noun, Christian is an appellation and moniker deriving from the appellation “Christ”, which many people associate exclusively with Jesus of Nazareth. The first known usage of this term can be found in the New Testament of the Bible, in Acts 11:26. The term was first used to derogate those known or perceived to be disciples of Christ. As an adjective, the term may describe an object associated with Christianity. For many this also means to be a member or adherent of one of the organized religious denominations of Christianity. The term Christian means “belonging to Christ” and is derived from the Greek noun Χριστός Khristós which means “anointed one,” which is itself a translation of the Hebrew word Moshiach (Hebrew: משיח, also written “Messiah”), (and in Arabic it is pronounced Maseeh مسيح). According to the New Testament, those who followed Jesus as his disciples were first called Christians by those who did not share their faith, in the city of Antioch. Xian or Xtian is another word used to describe Christians and is similar to using Xmas in place of Christmas; the X or Xt used as a contraction for “Christ” (“X” resembles the Greek letter Χ (Chi), the first letter of “Christ” in Greek (Χριστός [Christos]).”
Put more simply, according to “WordNet, a lexical database for the English language”, part of the Cognitive Science Laboratory at Princeton University, a Christian is “a religious person who believes Jesus is the Christ and who is a member of a Christian denomination.
So far so good. I do believe, without a doubt that Jesus is the Christ and I do belong to a Christian denomination.

A Zionist is part of Zionism and as ascribed by Wikipedia is “a political movement and an ideology that supports a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel, where the Jewish nation is believed to have originated and where Jewish kingdoms and self-governing states existed at various times in history. While Zionism is based heavily upon religious tradition linking the Jewish people to the Land of Israel, the modern movement was originally secular, beginning largely as a response to rampant anti-Semitism in late 19th century Europe.”
Again, simplified by the folks at Princeton, a Zionist is “a Jewish supporter of Zionism.”
Well, I’m not Jewish, but I do support a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel. Hummm…guess we’ll have to split hairs here and say that although I’m not a card carrying Zionist, I do support the main crux of their cause. If you are determined to assign me the title of Zionist, I guess that means you also lump the United States Government, the entire European Union, the entire United Nations and the majority of the Christian faith into this category? All of these entities have pronounced by law or declaration that they support a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel. Guess I’m in good Company.

You said “It is sad that the Christian Zionists are destroying our country by behaving in a very un-Christian way and never considering the Palestinian viewpoint.” I have to ask, in what way is supporting the chosen people of God and being a follower of Jesus “un-Christian”? What viewpoints about the palestinians are not being considered? Is it the one where they walk into malls and restaurants and blow up innocent civilians, woman and children, just trying to live their lives, using explosive belts filled with nails to make sure they kill and maim as many civilians as they can? Or maybe the one where their leaders call for the complete destruction of every man, woman and child in Israel; complete genocide? You probably agonize when a palestinian gets their house destroyed, or a stray bullet finds one of them, while completely ignoring the fact that armed gunmen were using the house as a firing position and that the bullet could just as easily be from the pali side as much as from the return fire from the Israeli side.

I’ve tried to answer your comment from a complete secular view. Keep in mind that to Jews and Christians alike, the land belongs to the Jews, given to them by our God many thousands of years before a “palestinian” was ever heard of. The palis are the squatters, not the Jews.”

Moussa: Hamas must accept Israel, despite its declarations

Friday, January 27th, 2006

So now that the slimy terrorist organization, hamas, is in charge of pali land, it seems that even the arab world is sweating a bit. I’m not sure why though. The only use they have for the pali’s is to use them to kill Israelis. That way they don’t have to get their hands dirty. Hamas is ready and willing to continue to do that. The arab world really doesn’t care for the palis at all. If Israel had not been reformed in 1948, the palestinian people would not even exist today. The land they current covet would be a part of Egypt, Jordan and maybe Syria. If Israel was ever destroyed, you would see just how quick the palis would follow as the arab word got rid of all of it’s undesirables.

In response to the Thursday announcement of Hamas’s landslide victory in Palestinian Legislative Council elections, the secretary-general of the Arab League, Amr Moussa, said on Friday that Hamas must accept the Arab League’s Beirut Initiative, including the recognition of Israel, despite the organization’s declared positions.
Moussa made the statement at a discussion dealing with the results of Wednesday’s Palestinian Legislative Council elections at the Davos Economic Forum meeting.
The initiative, which advocates an Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 cease-fire lines and the implementation of UN Security Council resolutions 242 and 338, was rejected by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon as soon as it was approved by the Arab League in 2002.
Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, however, declared during a security cabinet meeting Thursday night that any Palestinian Authority government that included
Hamas would not be a partner for Israel.
“If a [Palestinian] government should arise of which Hamas is a participant, the world and Israel will ignore it and render it irrelevant,” Olmert said.
READ MORE ON THE PLC ELECTIONS
In one Nablus home, Hamas is all in the family
Peaceful vote something to celebrate
Hamas leader: Negotiations ‘not taboo’
Hamas political platform
Former head of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) Avi Dichter said that Hamas would not be able to lead the Palestinian people while it persisted with the type of extremism it has employed until now.
“They need to define their status and choose which direction to take,” Dichter said, adding, “They need to decide whether they want to go with Iran or Israel.”
MK Silvan Shalom said on Friday morning that both the Israeli and Palestinian leaderships could have prevented the Hamas victory by deciding not to allow the elections to take place with its participation.
He said, “The Palestinians made a commitment that terror organizations would be forbidden from taking part in the elections, but Abu Mazen [PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas] chose to appease Hamas rather than to confront them.”
The Prime Minister’s Office issued a statement after the cabinet meeting that read, “Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian government, even if only part of it is an armed terrorist organization calling for Israel’s destruction, and in any case will continue to strenuously fight terrorism everywhere.”
Olmert effectively muzzled his ministers and government spokesmen Thursday as the government grappled with how best to deal with a brand new reality: “Hamastan,” following the Hamas victory in the Palestinian elections
.

Read the rest here.

Re-Post: Hamas Without Veils

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Hamas Without Veils
No more hiding behind the PA.
By Emanuele Ottolenghi

Contrary to initial responses, Hamas’s projected victory in the Palestinian parliamentary elections is a positive development. Not, as its apologists claim, because the proximity of power will favor a process of cooptation into parliamentary politics, and therefore strengthen the pragmatic wing of Hamas. There is no pragmatic wing in Hamas, and all differences within the movement — the armed wing and the political wing, Palestine Hamas and Hamas in Syria — are arguably tactical differences. No, the reason is, as Vladimir Ilich Lenin would put it, “worse is better.”
Hamas’s favored outcome was not victory, but a strong showing that would leave Hamas with the best of both worlds: It would remain in opposition (or would be invited to join a coalition as a junior partner) but would impose severe limitations on the Fatah-led government on how to manage its relations with Israel. Hamas could thus claim to reject Oslo, decline to recognize the Palestinian Authority and its commitments under the Oslo accords and the roadmap, and continue to use its rising political clout and its military strength to sabotage any effort to revive the moribund peace process.
What victory does to Hamas is to put the movement into an impossible position. As preliminary reports emerge, Hamas has already asked Fatah to form a coalition and got a negative response. Prime Minister Abu Ala has resigned with his cabinet, and president Abu Mazen will now appoint Hamas to form the next government. From the shadows of ambiguity, where Hamas could afford — thanks to the moral and intellectual hypocrisy of those in the Western world who dismissed its incendiary rhetoric as tactics — to have the cake and eat it too. Now, no more. Had they won 30-35 percent of the seats, they could have stayed out of power but put enormous limits on the Palestinian Authority’s room to maneuver. By winning, they have to govern, which means they have to tell the world, very soon, a number of things.
They will have to show their true face now: No more masks, no more veils, no more double-speak. If the cooptation theory — favored by the International Crisis Group and by the former British MI-6 turned talking head, Alistair Crooke — were true, this is the time for Hamas to show what hides behind its veil.
As the government of the Palestinian Authority, now they will have to say whether they accept the roadmap.
They will have to take control over security and decide whether they use it to uphold the roadmap or to wage war.
There will be no excuses or ambiguities when Hamas fires rockets on Israel and launches suicide attacks against civilian targets. Until Tuesday, the PA could hide behind the excuse that they were not directly responsible and they could not rein in the “militants.” Now the “militants” are the militia of the ruling party. They are one and the same with the Palestinian Authority. If they bomb Israel from Gaza — not under occupation anymore, and is therefore, technically, part of the Palestinian state the PLO proclaimed in Algiers in 1988, but never bothered to take responsibility for — that is an act of war, which can be responded to in kind, under the full cover of the internationally recognized right of self-defense. No more excuses that the Palestinians live under occupation, that the PA is too weak to disarm Hamas, that violence is not the policy of the PA. Hamas and the PA will be the same: What Hamas does is what the PA will stand for.
Continuing to pursue a violent path will automatically switch off all international aid. Perhaps Hamas intends to offset the resulting loss of revenue by hosting Holocaust-denial conferences in Gaza and terrorist training camps in Rafah, but it will still have to explain to the Palestinian public why it’s better to renounce public aid to wage war.
Meanwhile, Hamas will have to confront the Egyptians (and the Jordanians) and tell them what the PA under Hamas now stands for. And Egypt and Jordan will have to change course, accordingly. Egypt has an increased military presence along the Gaza border and several officers in Gaza to help “stabilize” the security situation — which so far has meant keeping the flames low enough not to bother Egypt but high enough not to let Israel off the hook completely. What will Egypt do now? Cooperate with Hamas in Gaza while it dreads Hamas’ twin, the Muslim Brotherhood, at home? Will it act more decisively to stop the ever growing flow of illegal weapons being smuggled into Gaza from the Sinai, or turn a blind eye even as the increased militancy in Gaza might embolden the Brotherhood in Egypt? No more ambiguity for Egypt either.
The Arab world will also be watching wearily. Hamas now will have to show to the Arab world that an Islamic party that wins a democratic election — everyone’s nightmarish scenario — is not as bad as it seems. For now, the Palestinians have chosen an Islamic option over a secular one. Let them have it. Let them enjoy life under Sharia. It is their choice — that is what self-determination is about — and we must respect it. After all, the spectacle of an Arab government that is defeated in a fair and free election, and that as a consequence resigns (resigns!), has no precedent in the Arab world. This is good news. Let’s have some more and put Hamas to the test of democracy: this experience will tell us if Islamists can embark on a road that leads to the Turkish model or whether Palestine will become a Sunni Iran. If democracy succeeds under Hamas’s leadership, there is a legitimate government in power that enjoys support and popularity in Palestine and might be more honest and more competent than its predecessor — not a difficult task, given the ineptitude of Fatah. Otherwise, we can tell once and for all that co-optation is not the way to moderation, but a recipe is self-defeating appeasement.
Hamas hoped that a narrow Fatah victory would allow Hamas to enter government in junior positions while pursuing violence against Israel — much like Hezbollah in Lebanon. Their victory forces them to make a choice now, and the international community, while respecting the democratic verdict of a fundamentally fair electoral process, must hold them to account. The issue is not whether Europe, the U.S., or Israel should talk to Hamas. The issue is whether there is anything to talk about with Hamas, and the burden of proof is on Hamas to demonstrate they are capable of becoming interlocutors. If Hamas meets the true test, namely accepting the road map, renouncing violence, disarming its own terror network, recognizing Israel and embracing the two-state solution, then no obstacle should remain for a dialogue with Hamas. Otherwise, they can taste Israeli steel, courtesy of the U.S. and the full backing of the EU of Israel’s right to defend itself.
Don’t hold your breath though.
In commenting on this electoral upheaval, Jerusalem Post’s editor David Horovitz has written
Some may seek comfort in the belief that an ascent to government could prompt a greater sense of responsibility, a move to moderation. But Hamas’s intolerance is based on a perceived religious imperative. No believing Muslim, in the Hamas conception, can be reconciled to Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East. To deny that, for Hamas, is blasphemy. And that is the ideology to which the Palestinian people, for whatever reason and by their own free hand, have just tied their fate. That is the guiding ideology with which Israel and the West will now have to grapple.
The appeasers and the apologists are already cuing up to argue that Hamas has already embarked on the road to realism. But unless Hamas reneges on its ideology and endorses a new course, then Israel’s claim that there is no Palestinian partner is vindicated. The resulting Israeli policy of unilateralism is vindicated. Israel’s argument that the Palestinians do not want peace is vindicated. Israel’s argument that Islamists’ nuances and differences of opinion are just tactical, not strategic, is also vindicated. And the prospects of a Palestinian state will become even more remote.
The uniform message that the world gives Hamas should thus be: Take off your veil, and expose your true face for the entire world to see in the naked and transparent light of democracy.

— Emanuele Ottolenghi teaches Israel studies at Oxford University.

World Taken by Surprise by Hamas Victory

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

I don’t know what planet these people have been on lately. Hamas winning the election was no surprise to me at all. They actually were pretty much in before it started. The pali people were tired of the corruption associated with the PA’s Fatah and also bought into the “victory over the Zionist” nonsense from the evacuation of the Gaza Strip. They voted for reform. What they are getting is a slimy terrorist organization who will only bring more bloodshed to the region.

As foreign governments attempt to formulate their reactions to the Hamas victory, informal talks are underway for a joint Hamas-Fatah government. Fatah is not enthusiastic.
Amidst reports that Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) is considering resigning – Prime Minister Abu Ala already resigned this morning – initial contacts are being made for a future PA government. Leading Hamas official Khaled Meshal, who works from Damascus, has asked Abbas to stay on and agree to a unity Hamas-Fatah government. This would serve Hamas’ interests, as its experience until now has added up only to waging terror attacks and running charity organizations – but not running a state government. Fatah, however, has not shown great enthusiasm in joining such a regime.

Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, in one of his first decisions today following the Hamas victory, ordered the ministers in his government not to discuss publicly the developments in the PA. He plans to hold an emergency meeting this evening with Foreign Minister Tzippy Livny and Defense Minister Sha’ul Mofaz to discuss the developments in the Palestinian Authority.
The Hamas victory took the world by surprise. Reports about the elections all predicted a Fatah victory, acknowledging only that it might be narrower than thought. Analyses of the U.S. approach discussed whether the Administration would engage in dialogue with Hamas ministers of a Fatah-led government, but barely noted the possibility that they might have to consider talking with a government led by Hamas.
U.S. President George Bush told the Wall Street Journal this week, “And so you’re getting a sense of how I’m going to deal with Hamas if they end up in positions of responsibility. And the answer is: not until you renounce your desire to destroy Israel will we deal with you.
“The Washington Post reported early this week that the U.S. had, relatively secretly, spent $2 million in recent weeks to promote Fatah.
Brig.-Gen. (res.) Yigal Pressler said today that he does not expect Israel to re-enter Gaza, even if Hamas continues its terrorist attacks, as long as it heads the Palestinian Authority. Pressler is a former advisor to Israeli Prime Ministers on terrorism.
Pressler predicted that Israel’s refusal to talk with Hamas would last only as long as Hamas says it does not recognize Israel. “I don’t see a big difference between Hamas and Fatah,” he said. “Israel until now spoke with Fatah because Fatah recognized Israel after the Oslo Accords, but if Hamas decides to recognize Israel, Israel will negotiate with Hamas.
“Labor Party Chairman Amir Peretz said today that his party would never conduct negotiations with a terror organization that has set out to destroy the State of Israel. Observers said that this position is not so much hawkish as a declaration of intent to promote further unilateral withdrawals.
Former General Security Service director and current Labor Party Knesset candidate Ami Ayalon said, “We have to rely on ourselves; we must continue building the fence, something that is in total [sic] consensus in Israel… We absolutely must not talk with Hamas, unless they totally change their entire approach to Israel – not just if they call another hudna or the like…”

Jesus Turns Water into Wine

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there; and both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding.
When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.”
And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.”
His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”
Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing twenty or thirty gallons each.
Jesus said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” So they filled them up to the brim.
And He said to them, “Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter.” So they took it to him.
When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom, and said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now.”
This beginning of His signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him.
After this He went down to Capernaum, He and His mother and His brothers and His disciples; and they stayed there a few days.

John 2:1-12 (New American Standard Bible)

Hell is Not Just a Four Letter Word

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

John Funk has posted an excellent article over on the Rapture Alert site about the word “hell” and what it means both to today’s society and in the Bible. Take a moment to read the whole article.

How many times a week, nay, a day do you hear the word “hell” used as an epithet? In the current vernacular it seems that this word is used in many different ways. It is used as a curse and it is used as a point of emphasis. It is even used as an interrogative but very seldom is it used as what it truly is, i.e. a place or a destination. Yet, this is a word that denotes that very thing. It is a word that has been corrupted and compromised throughout the centuries and now we fail to recognize it for what it is. It is a warning.
I had the opportunity to attend a concert recently where the Beatles’ song “Imagine” was played. You may remember that some of the lyrics to that particular song state:
Imagine there’s no heavenIt’s easy if you tryNo hell below usAbove us only skyImagine all the peopleLiving for today
Falling in line with that reasoning and contrary to the Biblical record, there are those who dispute the existence of hell. They want to dismiss the idea of an actual “hell” as a place of torment. They will not confront what Jesus taught about hell as a place created for those who are separated from God. The fact of the matter is that Jesus said more about hell than He did about heaven during His ministry on earth. While the idea of “hell fire and brimstone preaching” has largely fallen into disrepute in many circles, it is still important to understand what the Bible says about it.
Jesus gave a detailed explanation of life after death when He spoke about the beggar, Lazarus, and the rich man. In this particular story He vividly illustrated the difference between the existence to come for those who sought after God and those who did not while they were alive.

Continue here.

Pro-Family Attorney Sees Tide Turning Against ACLU’s Anti-Religion Efforts

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

Maybe us Christians are finally waking up and asserting our constitutional rights. The tide may be turning against the ACLU (what I like to call the Anti-Christian Litigation Union). I hope that people will continue to put pressure on the courts and government to promote free speech, not silence it.

(AgapePress) – A Tennessee County is fighting to keep its Ten Commandments display in public. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a lawsuit requesting a permanent injunction against a display of the biblical laws at the Rutherford County Courthouse in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
Four years ago, Rutherford County commissioners voted to display historical documents relating to the founding of the United States, including the Ten Commandments. The other documents in the “Foundations of American Law and Government” tableau include copies of the Magna Carta, the Mayflower Compact, the Tennessee Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, lyrics to The Star-Spangled Banner, and a drawing of “Lady Justice.”
Despite the County’s use of the Ten Commandments in a historical context, a lawsuit was filed claiming the display violated the United States Constitution. Mat Staver, president of
Liberty Counsel, is defending the display in the legal proceedings.
On the plus side for his clients, Staver contends, is a recent federal appeals court ruling that upheld an identical display in Kentucky. “This case in Rutherford County, Tennessee, will now move forward,” he explains. “But to the chagrin of the ACLU, which has now filed its motion to permanently prohibit the Ten Commandments, the case law is no longer in their favor.”
The attorney contends that the courts and history both are working against the civil liberties group. “I think in fact what has happened,” he says, “is the landscape and the court rulings have changed over the last six months.” Notably, the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently declared that the First Amendment to the Constitution does not demand a wall of separation between church and state.
But despite the changing legal climate, Staver says ACLU litigators simply “can’t restrain themselves” and will keep pressing to remove representations of religious faith from the public square, “even though they see the handwriting on the wall.”
The Liberty Counsel spokesman says the civil liberties group’s attorneys “still have an anti-religious agenda,” although he believes they will probably be more careful in selecting their future cases. “They clearly realize that the landscape has changed,” he says. “They no longer can count on the U.S. Supreme Court to be their friend in their anti-God campaign.”
“The tide is turning against the ACLU’s war on the Ten Commandments,” Staver observes. “Within the past few months we defeated them when two separate federal courts of appeal upheld displays of the Ten Commandments identical to that displayed in Rutherford County, Tennessee.”
In fact, Staver adds, “Every federal court of appeals that has ruled on the Ten Commandments since the Supreme Court’s ruling has upheld such displays.” He believes it is clear, particularly with the impending confirmation of Judge Samuel Alito, that the ACLU can no longer count on the high court’s help in the liberal group’s efforts to get rid of public representations of God’s laws.

Iran: We’ll put Israel in ‘eternal coma’

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

More stupidity from Iran’s leadership. Hey Iranians, isn’t time you depose that bunch of crazies who run your country, before they get a bunch of y’all killed?

Were Israel to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities, Iran would respond so strongly that it would put the Jewish state into “an eternal coma” like Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s, the Iranian defense minister said Wednesday.
“Zionists should know that if they do anything evil against Iran, the response of Iran’s armed forces will be so firm that it will send them into eternal coma, like Sharon,” Gen. Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said.
Najjar said the United States and Israel have been trying to frighten Iran, but neither country would dare attack to Iran.
READ MORE ON THE IRANIAN NUCLEAR THREAT
Iran defends anti-Holocaust conference
Differing views on Iran nuclear threat
Opinion: Sanction Iran now
Rattling the Cage: We can live with a nuclear Iran
Earlier Wednesday, Iran’s president blamed Britain and the
United States for two bombings that killed at least nine people in the southwestern city of Ahvaz on Tuesday.
“Traces of the occupiers of Iraq is evident in the Ahvaz events. They should take responsibility in this regard,” state television quoted President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as saying.
The station reported that Ahmadinejad had issued a decree ordering his foreign minister and intelligence minister to investigate the possibility that “foreign hands” might have been responsible for the explosions.
At least nine people were killed in Tuesday’s two blasts in Ahvaz, the capital of the oil-rich Khuzestan province which borders Iraq, police spokesman Mohammed Ali Pour said Wednesday.
According to the official Islamic Republic News Agency, 46 people were wounded in the explosions, which took place inside a bank and outside a state environmental agency building.
Ahvaz has a history of violence involving members of Iran’s Arab minority. Last year, bombings in June and October killed a total of 14 people in the city. In April, residents rioted for two days over claims, denied by the government, that the state was planning to reduce the number of Arabs in the area.
Iran has repeatedly accused Britain of provoking unrest in the region, which borders Iraq near where 8,500 British soldiers are based.
Britain has denied any connection to the Khuzestan unrest.

Sad Day for Israel – Terrorist Hamas Wins Election

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

So now the terrorist organization Hamas controls the palestinian government. What a sad day for Israel. I am sad for the many Israeli civilians who will die because of this. I’m sad for the misled teens and young men and women who will blow themselves up to achieve an eternity in hell on the devious lie of an eternity of sex with 72 virgins. And already we hear comments like these:
“Regarding its future diplomatic policy regarding Israel, a senior Hamas official said recognizing and negotiating with Israel are ‘not on our agenda.’ “
With all the new territory to use as a base, I look for things to become very rough for Israel.

Khaled Mashal, the senior Hamas leader who is based in Syria, called Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and said Hamas is ready for a political partnership with the defeated Fatah Party.
By early Thursday morning in had become clear that Hamas had shocked prognasticators by winning virtually all of the 66 seats in electoral districts.
READ MORE ON THE PLC ELECTIONS
In one Nablus home, Hamas is all in the family
Peaceful vote something to celebrate
Hamas leader: Negotiations ‘not taboo’
How the election works
“Mashal stressed the importance of a meeting with Abbas and the brothers in the Fatah movement, and all the Palestinian factions to agree on arranging the Palestinian house,” according to a statement on the Hamas web site.
Earlier, a senior official in the ruling Fatah Party reportedly called Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Hania, and congratulated him on the group’s
election victory.
Hamas plans to hold talks soon with Fatah on forging a political partnership, said Hania, adding, “this issue is going to be one of our priorities in the near future.”
He said Hamas would start consultations with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah and other parties on forming a government.
Abbas has met, according to Israel Radio, with constituents from his Fatah Party in order to convince them to accept the outcome of the vote and to keep the public order.
Regarding its future diplomatic policy regarding Israel, a senior Hamas official said recognizing and negotiating with Israel are “not on our agenda.”
However, Hamas also signaled flexibility, saying it wants a “political partnership,” presumably with Fatah.
In a surprise move the Palestinian Cabinet quickly submitted their resignations following the apparent Hamas victory, Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia’s office said, setting the stage for Hamas.
The resignations were in part a formality required after an election, but the timing of the move, hours before the release of official results, was surprising.
In the election, 132 seats were up for grabs, half chosen from party slates and half in districts. In the districts, Hamas won a vast majority of the seats, election officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the vote count was not complete.

Read the rest from the Jerusalem Post here.

The Little Children and Jesus

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

And they were bringing even their babies to Him so that He would touch them, but when the disciples saw it, they began rebuking them.
But Jesus called for them, saying, “Permit the children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
“Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.”

Luke 18:15-17 (New American Standard Bible)

Protesters See Mood Shift Against ‘Roe’

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

Could the nation actually be waking up? Are they finally figuring out that abortion has been preverted so much that democrats use it as a test to determine if a justice can be appointed to a federal court? Maybe they are finally realizing that abortion does actually kill a living person.

Tens of thousands of abortion opponents held an upbeat rally on the cold, gray streets of downtown Washington yesterday and described what they see as a societal tide turning against the 33-year-old Roe v. Wade court decision that legalized the procedure.
Demonstrators at the annual March for Life said their movement has been buoyed by two recent Supreme Court nominees — one of them confirmed — who appear open to reconsidering the 1973 decision. They talked optimistically about how technological advances are producing clearer sonograms, which could make it harder to argue that a fetus is not a person.
And they noted yesterday’s large turnout of young people, who filled the march route along Constitution Avenue and lined the walls outside the Supreme Court in cheerleader jackets, black leather outfits with studs and T-shirts that read, “Abortion is Mean” and “Sex is good, the pill is not.”
“This is the beginning of the end. We’ll look back at some point soon and won’t believe that people were ever killing babies like it was nothing,” said Ryan McAlpin, 19, who came from Chicago with a group of friends.
The rally and march were the culmination of three days of antiabortion conferences and lobbying. Yesterday’s events began on the Mall, in front of the Smithsonian Castle, with speakers including Christian and Jewish religious leaders from across the country and Bobby Schindler, the brother of Terri Schiavo, the brain-damaged woman at the center of a right-to-die debate last year.
The march is held each year to protest the Supreme Court’s Jan. 22, 1973, decision that most laws against abortion violate a constitutional right to privacy. The first protest was in 1974 in Washington.
Stephen G. Peroutka, chairman of the National Pro-Life Action Center, one of the event’s sponsors, estimated the crowd size at 225,000 to 250,000 people, while D.C. police gave an estimate of 70,000.

Read the rest here.

Mexican Military Invades United States

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

The Washington Post titled this article “Mexican drug run thwarted at border”, but as one reads the article, it is clear that the Mexican army is on the payroll of the Mexican drug lords and is now more than happy to cross our boarder to help them deliver their drugs. The last time I checked, it is considered an invasion when one sovereign nation sends troops into another. We did it to Afghanistan and Iraq to remove terrorist governments. Maybe we can “repell” this Mexican invasion and remove that corrupt terroist government as well.

U.S. law-enforcement authorities confronted several men in Mexican military uniforms and a camouflaged Humvee with .50-caliber machine guns who had crossed into Texas with suspected drug smugglers 50 miles southeast of El Paso, forcing an armed standoff along the Rio Grande, says a Texas sheriff.
Hudspeth County, Texas, Sheriff Arvin West said the incident began at 2:19 p.m. Monday when his deputies — working as part of an anti-drug smuggling enforcement initiative known as “Operation Linebacker” — pursued three SUVs spotted driving north from a border area along the Rio Grande near Interstate 10.
Sheriff West said the pursuit, which began near Sierra Blanca, Texas, ended for one of the vehicles when it blew out a tire and the driver fled. He said deputies seized 1,400 pounds of marijuana from that vehicle. As the southbound chase continued for the other two SUVs, he said the deputies and at least two Texas Department of Public Safety troopers who had joined in the pursuit encountered several men on the U.S. side of the border dressed in what he described as battle dress uniforms (BDUs). He said they “appeared to be soldiers, in a Humvee vehicle with what appeared to the officers as being .50-caliber machine guns.”
Sheriff West said one of the vehicles made it into Mexico, but the other got stuck in the river, where a group of men in civilian clothes offloaded what appeared to be bundles of marijuana. He said the truck was then set ablaze by the “soldiers.” No shots were fired and no injuries were reported during what amounted to an armed standoff at the border.
T.J. Bonner, a veteran Border Patrol agent and president of the National Border Patrol Council, yesterday called the incident “just another example of what we have been saying all along: This is a serious problem and it’s not going to go away.
“The U.S. government has got to put its foot down and take decisive action,” said Mr. Bonner, whose union represents all 10,000 of the agency’s non-supervisory personnel. “It would be nice if the Mexican government would address the problem, but it won’t even admit there is one.”
In November, the U.S. Border Patrol chased a dump truck full of marijuana in the same area when it also got stuck in the river seeking to return to Mexico. While Border Patrol agents sought to unload 3 tons of marijuana, the driver — who had fled — returned with a heavily armed group of men wearing Mexican military uniforms and carrying military-style weapons. The soldiers backed the agents away and bulldozed the truck back into Mexico.
Last week, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff dismissed reports of possible Mexican military incursions into the United States as “overblown” and “scare tactics.” He said those involved in the crossings may have been dressed in military uniforms, “but they are just criminals, they are not military but they are wearing camouflage so someone may assume they are military.”
Mr. Chertoff also said a significant number of 216 confirmed incursions since 1996 were “innocent,” noting that police and military units in Mexico pursuing criminals “may step across the border because they do not know exactly where the line is.” Law-enforcement officials yesterday noted that the Texas-Mexico border is clearly marked by the Rio Grande.

I’m sure glad that Mr. Chertoff”s “overblown”, “criminals…wearing camouflage” weren’t Mexican military. I guess the hummer with the top mounted .50 was just a pickup truck with a shotgun in the rack too. Wake up people!!!

Blogger.com Outage starting at 4:00 PM PST

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

Blogger Status

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

We’ll be taking Blogger down on Wednesday the 25th at 4pm PST to fix a bit of a switch that’s gone wonky on us. The outage should last about 15 minutes. Blogger.com and Blog*Spot blogs will be inaccessible during this time.This repair will fix the problem that caused the brief outage last Friday night. We’re also using this down time as an opportunity to tune our databases for more efficient spam catching and deletion.

(This means you won’t be able to get to my blog during the outage. Thought you might want to know. -ed.)

Students ban Christians in row over gays

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

Well, the homosexual topic is really showing up a lot in the news today. Here is an article from the Times Online in the U.K.

A UNIVERSITY Christian Union has been suspended and had its bank account frozen after refusing to open its membership to people of all religions.
The Christian Union, an evangelical student organisation, has instructed lawyers and is threatening court proceedings against the Birmingham Guild of Students.
The Birmingham Christian Union has more than 100 members who attend meetings regularly and has been functioning at the university for 76 years.
Members claim the actions have been taken against them after they refused on religious grounds to make “politically correct” changes to their charitable constitution, including explicitly mentioning people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered.
The Christian Union was advised that the use of the words “men” and “women” in the constitution were causing concern because they could be seen as excluding transsexual and transgendered people.
Difficulties arose after the organisation Christians in Sport, whose supporters include Jonathan Edwards, the Olympic gold medallist, attempted to book a room in the name of the Christian Union. After checking the union’s constitution, the Guild of Students objected to a number of clauses.
Andy Weatherley, Christian Union staff worker in Birmingham, said: “The guild insists the Christian Union constitution must be amended to include mandatory clauses, insisting on more control by the guild and open membership to those who would not call themselves Christians.”
At a recent guild meeting Matthew Crouch, of the Christian Union, appealed against derecognition. He said: “All guild members can attend our meeting but only members can vote,” but Stuart Mathers, a guild vice-president, said that all student groups have to follow guild council policy. Birmingham University Christian Union is affiliated to the University and Colleges’ Christian Fellowship. Pod Bhogal, its communications director, said: “We support the Birmingham Christian Union. We would not dream of telling a Muslim group or a political society how to elect their leaders or who could or could not become a member. The same applies to a Christian Union.”

Pro-Homosexual Support Costs Southern Baptist Congregation Its Affiliation

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

It seems to be a day filled with homosexual news. The Southern Baptist of Texas Convention continues to hold firm to Biblical truth and the fact that the Bible says homosexuality is a sin. I admire them for not caving into the falsehod of political correctness. Pray that they will always do so.

(AgapePress) – The executive board of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention has broken off affiliation with a Baptist congregation over its apparent support of another church that welcomes and affirms homosexuals.
According to Baptist Press, the SBTC’s Credentials Committee met last month with the pastor of Faith Harbour Church of Baytown, which is near Houston. The committee was attempting to clarify Faith Harbour’s stance toward a church called Ekletos, whose congregation was being allowed to meet in the Baptist church’s facilities.
Ekletos has a female senior pastor, while the Southern Baptist Church’s position on women in ministry stipulates that women “participate equally with men in the priesthood of all believers” but “pastoral leadership is assigned to men.” Also, the Ekletos website says that church welcomes and affirms homosexuals, bisexuals, and transgendered people. Southern Baptists officially affirm that “God’s plan for marriage and sexual intimacy” is “one man, and one woman, for life” and that the Bible condemns homosexuality as sin and therefore “not a ‘valid alternative lifestyle.'”
SBTC chairman Joe Stewart is pastor of First Baptist Church of Littlefield in west Texas. He says the move to disassociate from Faith Harbor was not a decision the executive board made lightly. “Our goal in the whole process is biblical fellowship, and biblical fellowship is based on truth,” he explains.
“The scriptures tell us in First John that if we’re going to walk in the light ‘as He Himself is in the light,’ that we have fellowship with one another,” Stewart continues. “So we want to base fellowship on a lot of things. But really, the parameters for fellowship in scripture is truth.”
The SBTC executive board chairman says the denomination tried to resolve its differences with Faith Harbour’s leaders. “We took the steps of sitting down with them and trying to do the Matthew 18 thing — to bring some reconciliation — and asked for them to take some steps to do away with this.”
Despite these efforts, however, Faith Harbour officials refused to distance their church from the female led, homosexuality-affirming congregation sharing the use of its sanctuary. “Since they were not willing to do so and were not willing to remove Ekletos from their website or say that they didn’t affirm the homosexual lifestyle, we took the steps to go ahead and remove our affiliation with that church,” the convention spokesman says.
However, the possibility of reconciliation still exists. Stewart says the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention might renew its association with Faith Harbour if the church’s staff agree to follow the theological guidelines of the denomination.

Rosie O’ Donnell Planning a Sitcom

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

Flushed with the success at the Golden Globes, hollywood forages ahead with trying to stuff the homosexual agenda down America’s throats in the form of a sitcom by Rosie O’Donnell. Forget the fact that so far the gay movies have made very little money and most likely won’t. As long as hollywood has major awards to look at and fawn over, who needs reality. These hollywood people are soooo out of touch with mainstream America.

Rosie O’Donnell hit the Sundance Film Festival with a jolt of lightning yesterday, premiering her HBO documentary “All Aboard!” to a standing ovation in the huge Eccles Auditorium.
Afterward, Rosie told me she’s hard at work writing a sitcom pilot that sounds like gold to me. O’Donnell is partnering with famed novelist Alice Hoffman, a fellow Long Islander, to create a character for the former talk show host that will resemble the beloved late humorist Erma Bombeck. Hoffman is an interesting choice on Rosie’s part as a partner: she is highly regarded as a critical and commercial success. One of her books, “Practical Magic,” was turned into a movie starring Nicole Kidman.
O’Donnell and Hoffman have got the gist of a good idea. “She’ll be a columnist for Newsday, and have a blended family at home,” Rosie says of her character. “Her ex-husband will have to move in with her, with his ten-year-old son from his most recent marriage.” But don’t think Rosie will shy away from gay pride. The main character will have lost her long-time lover to breast cancer, but speaks to her when she’s working on her column.
“I have a Sharon Gless-type in mind for the her,” Rosie said, “and Colin Quinn as the ex. But that’s just in the working stage.”
Considering the success of “Brokeback Mountain” and “Will & Grace,” Rosie’s idea sounds like a winner. Les Moonves, are you listening? Rosie has incredible comic timing; if the show can duplicate the kind of charm she showed in “Sleepless in Seattle” as Meg Ryan’s buddy, the the rest should be easy. O’Donnell, of course, would shoot the show in New York, close to her home.
And the idea of “new families” is what brought Rosie to Sundance along with her partner/wife Kelli Carpenter, their kids (Parker, Chelsea, Blake and Vivian), various family members and a lot of friends. “All Aboard” chronicles the maiden voyage in July 2005 of Rosie and Kelli’s vacation cruise for gay/mixed families
“All Aboard! Rosie’s Family Cruise” will air on HBO on April 6th, directed by Shari Cookson, who is not gay. And that, of course, is the point. Even a cold-hearted cynic like yours truly can see that this film is not about gay or straight, but about people trying to form families in a society that does not support family life. If anything, “All Aboard!” is more about Americans trying to hold on to conventional values than any film has in a long time.
Yes, we do see lesbian and gay couples, but they aren’t having sex; there’s nothing more than hand holding going on. What we do see is parents raising children. The kids get to talk as much as the parents, and if you ever had any questions about whether children adopted by gay parents turn out to be gay, etc–your questions will be answered once and for all.
Cookson does not sugarcoat the difficulties of putting together such a cruise (on a rather large ship). When the group got to Nassau, the Bahamas, they were met by very vocal protesters who feared their family resort would turn into Fire Island or Key West just by mere association.
By the way, after the screening I got to see Rosie and Kelli with their kids at dinner. They were normal and fun in the way that all families are with kids that age. And I will tell you that we’re going to have to keep an eye on eight-year-old Chelsea, whom Rosie and Kelli adopted together. She’s a very articulate “cutey-patootey,” as Rosie would say, and ready for her own talk show.

Success of “Brokeback Mountain”?? To date, it has grossed $41.7 million, and this only after the golden goose awards hyped it. Compare this to “The Chronicles of Narnia” (a film with moral and Christian overtones) which has grossed $271.9 million. Both films have the same release date of December 9th, 2005.
(Stats courtesy of Box Office Guru. -ed.)

Blog Reader from Ghana Needs Bibles

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

This email showed up in the blog’s email today. I’m not sure how to get Bibles to this person. If you are moved to help and have the resources and knowledge of how to send some materials, please help them out.

“please am a new searcher of the words of the lord and a newly born again christian and have devoted my life to serve the Alimghty but i have no books and a bible that can help me know more about the lord so am on my knees brgging and crying for help from u to please send me some books of ur ministry and some materials that can help me know more about the lord and win more souls for him in this last days.please try and help me for i dont want to perish my body being the temple of the lord but i also want to win more souls for him so that i can have a place in the kingdom of heaven. please send me some books and a bible that i can use for attending church.please in humility am pleading with the ministry to please try and help me.
please my address is;
Blesssing Ofotsu
Box 261 weija-accra
Ghana
Blessing Ofotsu (shakur2plass@hotmail.com)

Tragic: U.S. passed 47 million mark for abortions in 2005

Tuesday, January 24th, 2006

I still haven’t found where it says in the Constitution of the United States that it’s legal to get an abortion. Maybe I need to read it again. I keep hearing about this Roe vs. Wade thing, but I can’t find it in the Constitution either. Maybe I’m just not reading close enough.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–In what can only be described as tragic, the United States likely experienced its 47 millionth legal abortion at some point in 2005, more than three decades after the Supreme Court issued its infamous 1973 Roe. v. Wade decision legalizing the killing of the unborn.
The statistic is based on data since 1973 gathered by the pro-choice Guttmacher Institute and on estimates by the National Right to Life Committee. In the first full year of abortion legalization nationwide (1974), Guttmacher counted 898,600 abortions. That number reached a peak of 1,608,600 in 1990, before falling to 1,293,000 in 2002.
Since 1975, the United States has witnessed more than 1 million abortions each year. Unless the nation’s laws are changed, the number of abortions post-Roe will pass 50 million in 2008.
“It’s an unspeakable tragedy,” Randall K. O’Bannon, director of education and research at National Right to Life, told Baptist Press. “That [47 million] is higher than the population of some countries. That would be wiping out a number of whole states. The world was appropriately horrified and shocked when we lost about a couple thousand people on Sept. 11…. What we’re talking about here is that sort of loss multiplied dramatically.
“Guttmacher compiles data on abortions by contacting abortion clinics, and its latest data is from 2002 (1,293,000). The 47 million figure is based on Guttmacher data from 1973 though 2002, and on the 2002 count remaining relatively steady through 2005. By including a 3 percent underreport that Guttmacher estimates it misses, the figure of 47 million is derived.
“Our society needs to put in context the enormous amount of loss that we’ve suffered — the enormous amount of intelligence, the enormous amount of creativity, the enormous amount of productivity,” O’Bannon said, referring to the millions of lives lost since Roe.
Polls show that Americans have mixed views about abortion. A CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll from January showed that 53 percent of Americans consider themselves pro-choice, 42 percent pro-life. In addition, a 2005 CBS News poll showed that 60 percent of Americans believe Roe v. Wade was a “good thing.
“But when Americans are asked about specific details of abortion, poll results change dramatically.
In a January CBS News poll, 55 percent of U.S. adults said abortion should either never be legal or be legal only in instances of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother. (Seventeen percent said it should be legal only to save the mother’s life, 33 percent said it should be legal only in cases of rape, incest and to save the mother’s life and 5 percent said it should never be legal.) Fifteen percent said there should be “greater restrictions,” and 27 percent said it should be legal in all cases.

Read the rest here.