Archive for September 19th, 2006

“Pope Was Right To Say Islam Has Issue to Solve” by John Gibson

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Now we’re hearing calls for the execution of the pope for the crime of quoting a 14th century Christian emperor about Islam.
Lots of people have noticed the irony of Islamic calls for death for the crime of saying Islam calls for death a little too often.
But beyond that, as The Times of London pointed out today, the “sword verse” is in the Koran, and it appears to be the very instruction on which Usama bin Laden and other Wahhabists base their belief that conversion to Islam is quickest when it comes on the blade of a sharpened sword.
The Times of London said it today, as well as Britain’s Daily Telegraph and the U.S. news weekly TIME: The pope was right.
What was he right about? He was right to say that Islam has an issue with some doctrine that it must solve. It’s not for us to solve, it’s for followers of the prophet.
The issue is whether Islam is a religion of peace or not. It is obvious that many, many hundreds of millions of Muslims are perfectly peaceful and would gladly live in harmony with their neighbors. But what about the others?
There’s no question the others do exist. We see it in the news everyday now, and we do understand there are people who say they represent Islam who think persuasion and reason are a waste of time, that Islam should be spread by force.
As The Times and TIME magazine and others have pointed out, it’s hard to think of another religion that presently calls for war and death as the method of bringing the faith to the unenlightened.
Maybe the pope stumbled into a debate he would rather have ignored, but we’re in it now. So I ask my Muslim friends: What are you doing about this problem?

Original Link.

Madonna To Imitate Jesus on NBC

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

NBC has approved airing a Madonna concert that features the singer hanging on a cross wearing a crown of thorns. I have to wonder if it would be aired if it were a concert where muhammed was being mocked. The show is set to air in November.

NBC has given the green light to include Madonna-on-the-Cross footage in an upcoming November Sweeps concert special!

In the show, Madonna, wearing a gittered crown of thorns, descends on a suspended mirrored, disco ball-type cross singing her hit ‘Live To Tell.’

NBC suit Kevin Reilly said Madonna considered the crucifixion a highlight of her show.

“We viewed it and didn’t see it as being inappropriate,” NBC explained.

Developing…

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‘Sexy substitute’ gets no jail time

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

So now, aside from a rash of female teachers raping young (underage) school boys, we now have a judiciary which is willfully engaging in sexual discrimination at the time of sentencing.

A female high-school substitute teacher in Utah will serve no time behind bars for performing oral sex on a 17-year-old male student, despite comments from the judge that a man would have likely gone to prison.
“If this was a 29-year-old male and a 17-year-old female, I would be inclined to order some incarceration,” noted 3rd District Judge Mark Kouris during sentencing yesterday for Cameo Patch.
Patch was a fill-in instructor at Tooele High School, and was arrested after an informant disclosed her alleged relationship with the boy.
She was put on probation for 36 months, and ordered to obtain a psycho-sexual evaluation, as well as pay a $2,000 fine.
“The only thing I can say is that I understand the mistake that I made,” Patch told the judge, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. “It opened my eyes to the life I want to live for myself and my [three] kids. I’ll never wind up in this situation again.”
She and her husband divorced last month.
Patch and the boy reportedly met in the classroom, but engaged in the alleged wrongdoing off campus after school. All indications are the sexual activity was consensual.
According to the police report, “… [Patch] and the juvenile met in a local restaurant, exchanged phone numbers, and arranged to meet to talk later in the evening. During the course of the meeting between the two, sexual activity between [Patch] and the juvenile occurred.”
The informant stated Patch “performed oral sex” on the student, but did not engage in sexual intercourse.
Defense attorney Jon Williams said the boy had “created the environment and invited the error,” according to the Tribune.
Patch is the latest instructor following in the path of other female teachers who rape their students and receive little or no jail time.

Read the rest of the article, which has a detailed list of the teachers who have engaged in this deviant behavior with their students.

Original Link.

More Islamic Idiotcy

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Two more headlines showing just how much idiotcy is prevailing in the Islamic religion these days.

Muslims want further apology from pope

ANKARA, Turkey – Muslims in Turkey, Iraq and the Palestinian territories demanded Tuesday that Pope Benedict XVI make a clear apology for his remarks on Islam, instead of saying only that he was “deeply sorry” that Muslims had taken offense.
The prime minister of Malaysia, which chairs the world’s biggest Muslim bloc, said that Benedict’s expression of regret was acceptable.
In Turkey, protesters said Benedict must make full amends before a planned November trip that would be his papacy’s first visit to a Muslim nation.
“Either apologize, or do not come,” read a banner carried by a group of demonstrators from a religious workers’ union.
Iraq’s parliament also rejected Benedict’s explanation of his remarks, saying it was insufficiently clear.
The parliament “demands the pope take practical steps to restore respect to the Islamic world and its religion, and a clear-cut apology for what he said,” lawmakers said in a statement read at a press conference.
The top Muslim clergyman in the Palestinian territories similarly demanded that Benedict offer a “clear apology.”
The mufti of Jerusalem, Mohammed Hussein, urged Palestinians to halt attacks on churches in the territories, but held the pontiff responsible for the outpouring of anger.
“So far, we consider the apology of the Vatican Pope insufficient,” Hussein told reporters. “We firmly ask the Vatican Pope to offer a personal, public and clear apology to the 1.5 billion Muslims in this world.”

Human Rights Council asked to address Pope’s remarks

Islamic countries today asked the UN Human Rights Council to examine the question of religious tolerance, saying that Pope Benedict’s remarks on Islam threaten to alienate Muslims from the West.
Masood Khan, Pakistan’s ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, said Muslim countries were “reassured that the Pope has expressed regrets, distanced himself from the text that caused offence and renewed his invitation for a frank and sincere dialogue with mutual respect”.
However Khan, speaking on behalf of the 57-member Organisation of the Islamic Conference, said the speech was nevertheless a mistake – a sentiment echoing the response of many Muslims around the world to Benedict’s reading last week of a medieval text that characterised some of the teachings of Islam’s founder as “evil and inhuman” and referred to spreading Islam “by the sword”.
“The statement was regrettable as it showed lack of understanding, albeit inadvertent, about Islam and its prophet,” Khan told the 47-country council, the United Nations’ human rights watchdog.
“Such a tendency also threatens deeper alienation between the West and the world of Islam and hurts the ongoing efforts to promote dialogue and harmony amongst religions.”
He asked the council to set aside time during its session that opened today to address “religious tolerance and related issues”. The council is meeting until October 6.
“We hope that any attempts to revive medievalism would be replaced with the enlightened and reformed approach to forge strong relationships between Christianity and Islam,” Khan said.
“To associate Islam with violence is to negate the basic tenets of a faith practised for 15 centuries and which now has more than one billion followers – who are one-fifth of humanity.”

“A ROSH HASHANA MESSAGE” by Fern Sidman

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

In a few short days, we will once again (with Hashem’s help) usher in a New Year. The year 5767 will fast be upon us. And with much awe and trepidation, we approach the Almighty on this day of judgment and we beseech Him for mercy and for forgiveness and to grant us life.

We take this time to review our deeds, both personal and communal of the year that has past. We take upon ourselves to do repentance for any misdeeds or rebellious acts that we may have committed and we also review the opportunities that we did not seize.to sanctify Hashem’s name.

Over the past year, the Jewish nation and the Land of Israel have suffered the greatest military defeat in its history. We have witnessed the resurgence of Hezbollah and have have also seen the rise of Hamas to power. We have witnessed the bloody police riots against settlers in Amona. We have witnessed a government in Israel that is riddled with incompetency, conflict and corruption, whose agenda is the furtherance the covergence-realignment plan that will reproduce the scenario that we witnessed in Gush Katif. We have witnessed a rise in virulent anti-Semitism and the emergence of an Iranian madman named Ahmadinejad who declares his intention of wiping Israel off the map with his burgeoning nuclear arsenal. We have witnessed the legacy of the Holocaust mocked and ridiculed. There is no doubt that the threat of Islamo-Fascism is has reached hitherto unknown proportions and its philosophy is being embraced by many more potential adherents.

We are living in frightening times. The Jewish people and the land of Israel stands alone. There are no human allies to rush to our defense, as the world stands silent. While the level of bellicose rhetoric from our enemies continues to reach new levels, the silence of world Jewry is deafening. We are a people immersed in despair, confusion and mired in apathy and indifference because we are paralyzed by fear. There is no doubt that we’ve lived through similar times. In Europe in 1938, as the evil forces of Jew hatred goose stepped their way through Berlin, the world also stood silent as did world Jewry. As a result, we lost six million of our brethren. The parallel can easily be drawn to the situation that we face today.

And we stand perplexed and confused, we must know in our hearts that we cannot expect and will not receive the world’s assistance when it comes to defending ourselves against the heinous onslaught of our enemies. Our only ally is the Almighty G-d of Israel. Our only source of comfort and solace during these turbulent times is our direct connection to the Master of the Universe. At this time of Rosh HaShana, on this judgment day, our only hope, our only line of defense is to cleave to Hashem Yisborach.

As we stand in our synagogues and beat our breasts for our past sins and we ask ourselves what we can do to change our ways. We ask ourselves how we can improve our deeds. We ask ourselves how we can serve the Almighty G-d of Israel in a fitting and appropriate way.

We ask ourselves what the meaning of Kiddush Hashem really means, and why, out of fear, we did not summon up the strength and courage to do Hashem’s will. We ask ourselves why we did not do everything in our power to oust a government bent on wanton destruction of Jewish settlements. We must ask ourselves why we were humiliated and defeated by our terrorist enemies.

Did we really sacrifice ourselves for the Almighty? At this juncture of the year, it is exceptionally important to review a story that relates the true essence of Kiddush Hashem, of true and painful sacrifice for the Klall, for Hashem.

Every Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur we open up our Machzorim and recite the “U’Netaneh Tokef” prayer. The story behind this piyut, a prayer-poem, is sad and poignant and represents Ahavas Torah is a dramatic way.

The prayer is attributed to Rabbi Amnon of Mainz, Germany who lived about one thousand years ago. The Bishop of Mainz summoned Rabbi Amnon, a great Torah scholar, to his court and offered him a ministerial post on the condition that Rabbi Amnon would convert to Christianity. Rabbi Amnon refused. The Bishop insisted and continued to press Rabbi Amnon to accept his offer. Of course, Rabbi Amnon continued to refuse. One day, however, Rabbi Amnon asked the Bishop for three days to consider his offer.

As soon as Rabbi Amnon returned home, he was distraught at the terrible mistake he had made of even appearing to consider the Bishop’s offer and the betrayal of G-d. For three days he fasted and did not sleep and he prayed to Hashem for forgiveness. When the deadline for the decision arrived, the Bishop sent messenger after messenger to bring Rabbi Amnon to him, but he refused to go. Finally, the Bishop had him forcibly brought to him and demanded a response. The Rabbi responded, “I should have my tongue cut out for having spoken falsely.” The Bishop responded that he would not cut out his tongue for it had spoken properly, rather he would cut off his legs because he had not come to him. The non-Jews then proceeded to cut each joint of his legs and arms. After each joint they would ask him if he wanted to convert to Christianity and Rabbi Amnon would refuse. When this was completed they sent him home together with the pieces.

When Rosh HaShana came a short time later, Rabbi Amnon ordered that he be brought to the synagogue next to the Chazzan. When the time came for the Kedusha prayer Rabbi Amnon told the chazzan to pause so that he could sanctify the name of Hashem. He then recited the prayer, “U’Nesaneh Tokef” in which he speaks about the great judgement which takes place on Rosh HaShanah and that all of Hashem’s judgements are true. Immediately after the Kedusha prayer Rabbi Amnon passed away.

Three days later Rabbi Amnon appeared in a dream to Rabbi K’lonimus ben Meshullam of Mainz and taught him the text of this prayer and commanded him to spread it throughout the Jewish world.

The following is a translation of selections from this prayer:

We shall now speak of the power of this day’s holiness,

for it is awesome and frightening….

It is true that You alone are the One Who judges, who proves, knows and

testifies, writes and seals….

And remembers all that is forgotten…

All Creatures of the world will pass before you like sheep…

On Rosh HaShana shall be written and on Yom Kippur shall be sealed

how many will pass from the world and how many will be created,

who will live and who will die,….

who by water, who by fire, who by sword, who by beast,

who by famine, and who by thirst…

Who will rest and who will wander…

who will become poor and who will become rich,

who will be lowered down and who will be lifted up.

And repentance, prayer and charity remove the evil decree !

For You do not desire the death of he who deserves death

but rather that he should return from his way and live.

Until the day of his death You wait for him,

if he returns You accept him immediately.

We now have a chance to do real Teshuvah. To return to Hashem in glory and majesty. We must review the lesson of Rabbi Amnon of Mainz to learn the lesson of Kiddush Hashem. We must beseech the Almighty to return us to His Torah. He must ask His divine help for the courage and strength to sanctify His name. In this zchus, may the land of Israel be restored to the Jewish people and may we all be inscribed in the Book of Life and may we zealously strive for the day that we will no longer be humiliated by our enemies in front of the whole world. We have it in our power to bring the Moshiach, to sanctify name of Hashem and the land of Israel. Let us pray for the steadfastness and strength of a Rabbi Amnon and let us incorporate this most important lesson in our everyday lives.

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Fern Sidman holds a B.A, in political science from Brooklyn College. She was the educational coordinator for the Betar Youth Movement in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was national director of the Jewish Defense League from 1983-1985. She was a researcher for several books written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTK”L. She was the managing editor of the publication entitled, The Voice of Judea, and is a regular contributor to its web site. She is currently a writer and journalist living in New York City. Her articles have appeared in The Jewish Press, The Jewish Advocate, The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and numerous Jewish and general web sites including, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Pipes and Michael Freund.
We are pleased to have Ms. Sidman as a regular contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

Violent Muslim Reaction Justifies Pope’s Stated Concerns, Cardinal Says

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

The bottom line:
Islam IS an intolerant and violent religion.

(CNSNews.com) – As the Vatican continues trying to placate Muslims angered by Pope Benedict XVI’s recent remarks, a senior Catholic leader has said the violent response justified the concern the pope had been expressing in the first place.
Citing threats of violence against the pope in Somalia and Iraq, Archbishop of Sydney Cardinal George Pell said “the violent reactions … showed the link for many Islamists between religion and violence, their refusal to respond to criticism with rational arguments, but only with demonstrations, threats and actual violence.”
In a statement, Australia’s top Catholic leader expressed gratitude that no “organized violence” had occurred in Australia in response to the pope’s words, and he called the reactions of some Australian Muslim leaders “unfortunately typical and unhelpful.”
“It is always someone else’s fault, and issues touching on the nature of Islam are ignored,” he said.
“Our major priority must be to maintain peace and harmony within the Australian community, but no lasting achievements can be grounded in fantasies and evasions.”
Pell said genuine questions about Islam needed to be addressed, not regularly avoided.
Separately, in an op-ed article published Tuesday, he made a further appeal for Christian-Muslim dialogue.
“Accurate information, accurate understandings and a respect for truth, even across differences, are the only long-term bases for fruitful exchanges.”

Original Link.

Psychologist Says Gender-Dysphoric Kids Need Case-by-Case Intervention

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

In my opinion, here’s the key phrase to this article:
“Homosexual and transgender groups often use cases of gender confusion in children to promote their own political agenda.”

(AgapePress) – Reports say a growing number of public and private elementary schools are allowing young boys to enroll as girls and vice versa. One five-year-old boy who is said to be rejecting his biological gender was enrolled by his family in Broward County Schools and is being called the youngest transgender child in the U.S.
A recent San Francisco Chronicle article featured two Oakland, California, elementary schools that are developing new ways to accommodate students who are said to be exhibiting “gender dysphoria,” which is described as confusion or discomfort about one’s birth gender.
However, noted mental health counselor Dr. Warren Throckmorton of Grove City College in Pennsylvania believes children who feel they are the wrong gender require individualized, case-by-case intervention. In some cases, he suggests, reported incidences of gender dysphoria indicate as much about the mental health community as they do about the actual problem.
“A lot of this reporting,” Throckmorton asserts, “reflects a conflict in the professions about whether or not gender-variant kids are expressing a disorder or whether they are expressing who they are in some ultimate sense — that they could know that as pre-schoolers or elementary school kids.”
Elementary schools face a difficult task when confronted by parents who want to enroll their young boy as a girl, or vice versa, Throckmorton notes. However, he emphasizes that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for children who are exhibiting gender-variant or gender dysphoric behavior.
Although it can be very tempting to take sides on this controversial issue, the Grove City College psychologist says he feels “that every case has to be evaluated neutrally, without political ramifications.” And the evaluating should be done by professionals with alternative views, he suggests, “so that parents have both sides when they’re trying to make a decision about what to do with their kids.”
Throckmorton says he has counseled children with gender-variant behavior who later embraced their God-given biological gender. Unfortunately, he contends, homosexual and transgender groups often use cases of gender confusion in children to promote their own political agenda.

Original Link.

After Initially Refusing, School Now Will Allow Display of ‘I Love Jesus’ Poster

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

The moral of this article is “Educate the Educators”.

(AgapePress) – A Nevada elementary school has reversed its decision to prohibit a second-grade student from displaying an “I Love Jesus” poster.
Officials with John Dooley Elementary School in Henderson had told the young girl she could not display her artwork alongside posters created by other students because her poster displayed the phrases “I Love Jesus,” “Church is Great,” and “The Bible is Great.” School officials claimed allowing the poster was an unconstitutional endorsement of religion.
The student’s parents then contacted The Rutherford Institute, based in Virginia, which called on the school to end its religious viewpoint discrimination. The response, says Rutherford president John Whitehead, was quite favorable.
“We just went through the law [with school officials] and [told them they] can’t do this,” Whitehead explains. “In a case that The Rutherford Institute won years ago, the Good News case in New York, the Supreme Court ruled that this is viewpoint discrimination. If you’re going to allow other students to have posters, you can’t discriminate against religious viewpoint.”
Whitehead says that after they contacted the school, apparently the school board’s lawyer researched the subject and reported back that unless they reversed course, they would like be sued — and they would probably lose the case. “And they decided to change their mind,” adds Whitehead.
According to the Rutherford spokesman, it was the educators who needed to be educated in this case.
“[School officials in] most schools are ignorant …. [They’re] not stupid [about this issue], they’re ignorant; they just don’t know the law,” he states. “For years it’s been pumped into school officials’ heads and school attorneys’ heads that anything to do with religion in the schools is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court has not ruled that, and many federal court have not ruled that.”
Whitehead shares that the young girl is now free to display her “I Love Jesus” poster as well as subsequent work she might create. “After all,” notes the attorney, “any reasonable person understands that a display of this second-grader’s artwork constitutes her private expression and not that of the school.”

Original Link.

When Atheists and Secularists Quote Scripture

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

A very well done post, over at Hot Air, about how atheists and secularists are never going to understand the enemy we are fighting in the guise of radical Islamst, since they are incapable of understanding abrogated religious text.
On a side not, I’ve also always found it amusing that atheist try to use the Bible to disprove the Bible and so forth. Using circular reasoning, while citing a document that holds no credence for the atheist, is highly dubious logic, at the best. Complete lunacy at worst.

The basis of the title of this post is that it’s consistently atheists and adamant secularists who understand the Islamist enemy the least, yet they’re also the quickest to slam or argue against anyone who does quote the Koran on its own terms to argue that it is animating violence. They are also the quickest to equate Christianity with the villain du jour, because Christianity is to them just one among many faiths that they may think they understand, but ultimately don’t. Here’s one example; here’s another. Follow the thread from that second link and you’ll see atheist Andrew Stuttaford missing the point that Andrew McCarthy is making, that point being that Islamists are animated to violence by their own beliefs as laid down in the Koran. And now I’m going to explain why he (and Bill over at INDC Journal) miss the point. I’m not doing this to be mean or snarky, but to illuminate one of the many difficulties we have when dealing with an enemy who’s ruthlessness is matched only by his religious zeal, a zeal that animates his ruthlessness and is based on his understanding of his faith’s holy writ.

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In the life of a religious believer, regardless of the sect, faith or creed, some writing or another or a set of writings hold some position of moral authority. The degree of authority held depends on several factors, including the degree of an individual’s belief and the position of a given writing with respect to other writings that the faith holds dear. Some writings hold more sway than others in any faith. That’s just a fact. And it’s one easily misunderstood by those who hold no faith at all, and therefore assume that all scriptures held sacred by a given faith hold equal weight.

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Leviticus forms part of what’s known as the Law (along with Genesis, Exodus, Numbers and Deuteronomy), and in the Christian way of thinking the civil and ceremonial components of the Law hold no command on our behavior today because the purpose of the Law was fulfilled in Christ. Christians are not bound by the legal commands of the Law, and we do eat pork and do lots of other things that the Law forbids, and likewise we don’t do many things the civil and ceremonial Law commands us to do. I don’t want to get too esoteric here for the non-believers to be able to follow me, but essentially, those parts of the Law are no longer authoritative over the behavior of the Christian believer. They have been abrogated by later acts and writings. That doesn’t mean those five books are without value; far from it. They’re incredibly valuable for many, many reasons. But the civil and ceremonial Law belongs to a set place and time and was abrogated by, among other things, Christ’s death and resurrection and Peter’s vision in Acts 10. The Law’s overall purpose–making humans presentable to a holy God–was fulfilled in Christ.

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The point is, in the Law there are moral, civil and ceremonial commands, but through the work of Christ the latter two have been abrogated while the first remains in force. So Leviticus is no weapon useful for smiting a Christian, something secularists are ill-equipped to understand. They should look for violent language in the New Testament if they want to argue that Christianity promotes violence. They will look in vain if they do that, though. The most common misunderstanding of the New Testament is to read it as pacifist, not violent.

By contrast, the Islamic Suras quoted by Robert Spencer and others that promote violence by Muslims against non-Muslims come from the second half of the Koran. They have not been abrogated by later scripture, because there is no later scripture. Spencer’s argument is that if any Koranic verses have abrogated any others, then the weight has to be given to the later verses–and they’re the violent ones. But if you don’t understand the principle of abrogation or the fact that not all scriptures hold equal weight in any faith, and it’s clear those who don’t hold to any faith at all probably don’t since they keep quoting Old Testament civil Law to slam Christians, then you’re ill-equipped to make the distinctions that mark Leviticus less authoritative on behavior than the Gospels for the Christian, and earlier verses less authoritative than later ones for the Muslim. The position of the violent Suras in the Koran is both a fact and a problem, one Spencer attempts to engage on its own terms, and one secularists consistently misunderstand because they don’t understand how a given text relates to a given faith and to other texts within that faith.

Original Link.