Archive for June 8th, 2006

Does ‘PG’ rating mean ‘pro-God’?

Thursday, June 8th, 2006

Film with miracles, talk about Jesus draws parental warning from MPAA

This is just going too far. When is the country going to put an end to political correctness gone crazy.
But, with having said that, it is the parents responsibility to know a movie’s content before allowing their children to see it.

A new family film featuring miracles and a pro-God theme has earned a rating of “PG” from the Motion Picture Association of America due to fears it might offend people who have no faith or a different faith.
The decision surprises many who believed the “parental guidance” warning was reserved for the likes of violence, foul language and nudity.
“Facing the Giants,” the story of a Christian high-school football coach who uses his undying faith to battle the giants of fear and failure, was given the rating by the Motion Picture Association of America, the group which brands films according to their content.
“The theme of a PG-rated film may itself call for parental guidance,” the MPAA says of its rating system. “There may be some profanity in these films. There may be some violence or brief nudity. … The PG rating, suggesting parental guidance, is thus an alert for examination of a film by parents before deciding on its viewing by their children. Obviously such a line is difficult to draw.”
“It is kind of interesting that faith has joined that list of deadly sins that the MPAA board wants to warn parents to worry about,” film spokesman Kris Fuhr told the Scripps Howard News Service.
Fuhr noted the association “decided that the movie was heavily laden with messages from one religion and that this might offend people from other religions. It’s important that they used the word ‘proselytizing’ when they talked about giving this movie a PG.”
The movie was made at a cost of $100,000 by Provident Films, a division of Sony Pictures. It was co-written and co-produced by Alex and Stephen Kendrick, the associate pastors of media at Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Ga.
The plot includes numerous prayers being answered, a medical miracle, and a mystic who delivers a message from God.
A scene which may have drawn extra scrutiny includes a discussion between a football coach and a wealthy brat.
When the coach said the student needed to stop bad-mouthing his father and get right with God, the boy said, “You really believe in all that honoring God and following Jesus stuff? … Well, I ain’t trying to be disrespectful, but not everybody believes in that.”
The coach replied: “Matt, nobody’s forcing anything on you. Following Jesus Christ is the decision that you’re going to have to make for yourself. You may not want to accept it, because it’ll change your life. You’ll never be the same.”
Alex Kendrick, who plays the coach in the film, told Scripps: “Look, I have those kinds of conversations about faith all the time and I’ve seen young people make decisions that change their lives. The reason we’re making movies in the first place is that we hope they inspire people to think twice about their relationships with God.”
The PG rating for the film is already sparking discussion on Internet messageboards. Among the postings:

  • “This is just another example of trying to ‘ghetto-ize’ Christians. No other group is treated as such. Whoever is on that board needs to hear that this is not going to be tolerated unless the religious beliefs of every other group – including New Age, atheist, Wiccan, etc., are treated the same way. How sad that we have descended to this. Make no mistake, this is a very disturbing sign of a sick and potentially dangerous culture.”
  • “It is demonizing Christians and that is no different from the demonizing that was going on in Germany before the Holocaust. First, there is the laughing at, then the demonizing, then blaming and finally, punishment that everyone accepts as normal and good. Sit and allow this to happen and that is the road we are going down.”
  • “Nowadays, a PG movie means it’s family friendly! Heck, ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ is PG. No one complains about its PG rating when the family’s Greek Orthodox religion is explicitly shown. So why should people complain that ‘Facing the Giants’ is PG? It might get people to take it seriously. If it had a G rating, people might be likely to think it’s a cute little kid’s movie.”
  • “I think it kind of makes sense. Look at it this way. If a movie is based on proselytizing atheism and promoting atheism, wouldn’t you like it to have a PG rating? As a parent, you don’t want children taught ideas that you don’t feel are appropriate. If a movie is pushing the idea that God doesn’t exist, even if it is the cleanest movie in the world, many Christian parents would want to guide their children regarding that film. The same might be said about Muslim or Buddhist families not wanting their children to have instruction that they do not agree with.”
  • “I’d like to see the rating system really be put to serious use if movies about the Bible are going to come out. I, for one, would not want to go to a G-rated movie based on Scripture and then have to watch as actresses playing Lot’s daughters get busy with their dad. That is an NR [Not Rated] movie if there ever was one.”
  • Original Link.

    Christian forced to reproduce lesbian films sues

    Thursday, June 8th, 2006

    Good for Mr. Bono. I pray that the courts will uphold his right to not promote the homosexual agenda.

    A film-and-video lab owner has filed suit against a county Human Rights Commission for ordering him to duplicate two pro-homosexual videos produced by a lesbian activist.
    Tim Bono and Bono Film and Video, Inc. of Arlington, Va., is challenging the authority of the Arlington County Human Rights Commission, the Arlington County Board and Arlington County.
    The controversy began when Tim Bono was contacted by lesbian activist Lilli Vincenz via e-mail to reproduce documentaries entitled “Gay and Proud” and “Second Largest Minority.”
    Bono told Vincenz his company does not duplicate material that is obscene, could embarrass employees, hurt the company’s reputation or runs counter to the company’s core values and to Christian ethics.
    Vincenz filed a complaint with the Arlington Human Rights Commission under the county’s nondiscrimination ordinance, which was amended to include “sexual orientation.”
    On April 13, the commission entered a decision directing Bono Film to “provide the requested duplication service at the complainant’s expense or in the alternative to assist the complainant in locating a suitable facility where this service can be provided at the Bono Film and Video’s expense.”
    Bono, represented by Florida-based Liberty Counsel, argues Virginia law, under a provision called “Dillon’s Rule,” prohibits local government from passing or enforcing nondiscrimination laws that are not authorized by the state.
    The state does not list “sexual orientation” as a protected civil right or class.
    Liberty Counsel says that in addition to removing the county commission’s authority to enforce “sexual orientation” nondiscrimination laws, the lawsuit also will affect several other Virginia counties that have illegally passed “sexual orientation” antidiscrimination laws.
    The suit also alleges violations of Bono’s freedom of speech and free exercise of religion.
    Erik Stanley, chief counsel of Liberty Counsel, contends that just as a newspaper is not required to run every proposed ad, a duplicator or printer is not obligated to reproduce every proposed copy.
    “Mr. Bono does not have to reproduce a customer’s hate speech, obscenity or pornography, nor may a customer hijack Mr. Bono’s business and force him to promote a homosexual agenda,” he said.
    Stanley points out that several years ago, the Virginia attorney general issued an opinion concluding that local “sexual orientation” laws violated state law.

    Original Link.

    UK Christians Say New Sexual Orientation Rules Undermine Their Beliefs

    Thursday, June 8th, 2006

    If we Christians continue to sit on our hands, it will not be long before we are faced with this very same situation here in the U.S.

    London (CNSNews.com) – Accusing the British government of seeking to undermine belief in God, a coalition of religious groups has begun a vigorous campaign against proposed new sexual orientation regulations.
    Due to go into effect this fall, the new ordinances would protect homosexuals and lesbians from being discriminated against when in the market for “goods and services.”
    However, several religious organizations claim the regulations would have the effect of forcing them to act against their beliefs.
    A spokeswoman for the Lawyers’ Christian Fellowship said schools run by the Church of England could, for example, be accused of being “biased” in favor of heterosexual relationships in sexual education classes.
    Christians who run bed-and-breakfast accommodations would be forced to rent rooms to same-sex couples, while religious newspapers would be unable to turn down advertisements from homosexual pressure groups.
    The proposals have been welcomed by groups such as the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement, but prominent figures in the Church of England spoke out against them.
    Michael Nazir Ali, Bishop of Rochester, said in a statement the regulations would hinder much of the church’s charitable work.
    “In the proposed regulations there is no clear exemption for religious belief even though it is widely known that several of the faiths in this country will have serious difficulty with the regulations,” he said. “Religion affects every area of life and cannot be reduced to just worship.”
    Under the new regulations, a church that regularly rents out a hall to community groups would not be able to turn down applications from homosexual organizations
    Religious groups that give out grants could be taken to court if they discriminate against homosexual groups, and Christian marketing companies may have to take on clients pushing a homosexual agenda.
    In 2003, the British government made it illegal to discriminate against homosexual and lesbian citizens in employment. However, religious groups were exempted.
    Many Christians are hoping the new regulations, set to go into effect this October, will also exempt religious suppliers of goods and services, although currently the proposals contain no such exemptions.
    Aileen McColgan, a law professor specializing in employment law at the University of London, said Wednesday there was a good chance the government would exempt faith groups again.
    “There’s no question on the ability of organizations to discriminate in some cases,” she said. “I suspect it’ll turn on whether religion is central to the service being provided.”
    Despite this, she expected there to remain some restrictions on religious service-providers, “which will bite on religious organizations.”

    Original Link.

    Evictions Ordered Following Supreme Court’s ‘Kelo’ Ruling

    Thursday, June 8th, 2006

    I couldn’t believe it when the Supreme Court ruled on this last year. Of all the things they have “interpreted” incorrectly, I cannot think of any other reason for a rational person to interpret this law in this way, unless they had a political agenda. This ruling needs to be reversed as soon as possible.

    (CNSNews.com) – The heavily criticized U.S. Supreme Court decision from June 2005 – allowing governments to seize private property for the financial benefit of the community as a whole — is still having ramifications. New London, Conn., city officials voted Monday to evict two residents who refused to give up their homes in a Fort Trumbull neighborhood.
    The city council voted 5-2 to evict homeowners Pasquale Cristofaro and Susette Kelo from their riverfront homes. The motion instructed city Law Director Thomas Londregan to proceed with the process of obtaining the properties and to “obtain past due taxes and rents collected from third parties and/or reasonable use and occupancy fees.”
    The city, suffering from a decreasing tax base and population, created a development plan for property in Fort Trumbull in 2000 that included construction of a hotel, convention center and various research, office and retail sites.
    Seven property owners refused to sell the property to the city. The case went to the Supreme Court, which, in Kelo v. City of New London, ruled 5-4 that the government may seize the home, small business or other private property of one citizen and transfer it to another entity if the transfer would boost the community’s economic development and its tax base.
    Since the ruling, five of the seven plaintiffs agreed to sell. Bill Von Winkle, who owns three houses with 12 apartments in the neighborhood, reached a settlement Monday shortly before the meeting began.
    “It is my strong belief that the previous city council and this city council have been exceedingly fair and forthright in seeking accommodations in order to move the Municipal Development Plan for Fort Trumbull forward,” Councilor Kevin Cavanagh said. “We have made our intentions known, set a deadline which has expired and this is the next step that needs to take place,” a reference to the eviction proceedings approved Monday.
    The city council vote was contrary to the recommendation from Connecticut’s Republican Gov. Jodi Rell, who felt that the council should allow plaintiffs who declined settlements to relocate together and be given titles to the new property.
    “The governor came up with a reasonable proposal that would have ended this controversy once and for all,” Scott Bullock, the residents’ lawyer, told Cybercast News Service. “[Refusing it] just shows that the city council is acting completely irrational.”
    Michael Cristofaro, son of Pasquale Cristofaro, said his family would not settle with the city.
    “If you want to see an 81-year-old man who loves this country and has never been arrested be handcuffed and hauled away along with every member of the Cristofaro family, continue along the path you are going,” Cristofaro said. “We won’t be leaving.”
    Charles Frink was one of the two council members who voted against the plan.
    “I can’t accept a possible reduction in taxes by having neighbors thrown out of their property,” Frink said. “This is morally abhorrent to me. I refuse to profit from my neighbor’s pain.”
    Bullock said the residents will continue to explore their options.
    “We’re going to be discussing and meeting with the remaining homeowners and looking at all the options we have available … from other avenues with the state up to and including civil disobedience, if it comes to it,” he said.

    Original Link.

    Senators Deep-Six MPA — For Now

    Thursday, June 8th, 2006

    Christians, I’m disappointed in you for not taking a more active role in pressuring your senators in supporting this amendment. I want to make it perfectly clear to all of you that without this amendment, the traditional American family, the building block of our society ever since this country was started and also the building block of all society’s over the ages, will be corrupted and destroyed by the activist courts, against the will of a majority of people.

    (AgapePress) – Supporters of the Marriage Protection Amendment (MPA) are not distraught over the fact that the U.S. Senate has rejected the call for a vote on the measure. Sixty votes were needed to have the measure come up for an up-or-down vote; the move came up 11 votes short.
    Despite that setback, supporters in the Senate are not going to “fall back and cry about it,” says Senator Orin Hatch of Utah. “I think they are going to keep bringing it up,” says the Republican lawmaker. In fact, according to Associated Press, the measure may come up next month in the U.S. House. It is an issue of “significant importance” to many Americans, says House Majority Leader John Boehner of Ohio. “We have significant numbers of our members who want a vote on this, so we are going to have a vote,” he says.
    The vote today (Wednesday, June 7) was 49-48, giving many pro-family groups that have lobbied for the MPA what they had hoped for leading up to the elections this fall — a list of senators they say shows who is willing to fight to protect traditional marriage, and who favors homosexual “marriage.” (Click here for the roll call vote)
    Kansas Senator Sam Brownback says the 49-48 vote was “highly unfortunate” because Democratic senators opposed the amendment, despite what the people of their states had voted in earlier ballot initiatives.
    “If the senators had voted as their states have already voted, the vote would have been 90-10 in favor of the amendment, as 45 states have defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman — and that’s what this amendment does: it defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman.”
    The Republican lawmaker says even though Democrats in the Senate have now managed to defeat a marriage amendment for a second time, the push to eventually establish the amendment will not stop. “We are making progress,” he says, “and we will not stop until the institution of marriage between a man and a woman is protected and honored in the United States.”

    Original Link.

    Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi Killed in Bombing Raid

    Thursday, June 8th, 2006

    At last, one more slimy terrorist leader dead!! Hats off to our wonderful military! Good Job, Folks!

    AGHDAD, Iraq — Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the Al Qaeda in Iraq leader who led a brutal insurgency that included homicide bombings, kidnappings and beheadings, was killed in an airstrike on a building north of Baghdad, U.S. and Iraqi officials announced Thursday.
    Officials said the terror leader’s identity was confirmed by fingerprints, facial recognition, and known scars.
    Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki said Al-Zarqawi was killed along with seven aides Wednesday evening at around 6:15 p.m. local time in a bombing raid on a building in a remote area 30 miles northeast of Baghdad in Diyala province.
    Loud applause broke out as Al-Maliki, flanked by U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and U.S. Gen. George Casey, the top commander in Iraq, made the announcement at a news conference in Baghdad Thursday that al-Zarqawi was “terminated.”
    Zarqawi’s death came just six days after an audiotape was posted on the Internet, in which the Jordanian-born terrorist leader called on Sunnis to “confront” Shiites in Iraq.
    Al-Maliki said the air strike was ordered after residents in the area provided intelligence on the whereabouts of al-Zarqawi and his aides to Iraqi security forces.
    A Jordanian official said that Jordan also provided the U.S. military with information that helped in tracking Al-Zarqawi down. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was addressing intelligence issues, would not elaborate, but Jordan is known to have intelligence agents operating in Iraq to hunt down Islamic militants.
    Some of the information came from Jordan’s sources inside Iraq and led the U.S. military to the area of Baqouba, the official said.
    Baqouba has in recent weeks seen a spike in sectarian violence, including the discovery of 17 severed heads in fruit boxes. It was also near the site of a sectarian atrocity last week in which masked gunmen killed 21 Shiites, including a dozen students, after separating out four Sunni Arabs.
    “Those who disrupt the course of life, like Al-Zarqawi, will have a tragic end,” Al-Maliki said. He also warned those who would follow the militant’s lead that “whenever there is a new al-Zarqawi, we will kill him.”
    “This is a message for all those who embrace violence, killing and destruction to stop and to (retreat) before it’s too late,” he said. “It is an open battle with all those who incite sectarianism.”
    Khalilzad added that “the death of Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi is a huge success for Iraq and the international war on terror.” He also gave a thumbs up and said it was a good day for America.

    Original Link.