Archive for June 6th, 2008

Historic Frankenmuth, Michigan To Fight Cross Removal

Friday, June 6th, 2008

Officials in Frankenmuth, Mich., a city that was founded by Lutheran missionaries and today is known as “Michigan’s Little Bavaria” for its heritage and beer festivals, have decided to fight to keep their city shield, which includes a swath of grain to represent the missionaries’ farming roots, and a “Luther Rose” with a tiny cross in the center.

The emblem, and a related cross in the city park, have come under attack from Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, according to officials.

“The council’s unanimous vote to retain the Thomas More Law Center in the face of a previous attempt to remove the small cross from its city shield and now the more recent focus on the cross in Cross Park … reflects a deep commitment on the part of the council to defend these symbols of the city’s unique history and culture,” said Richard Thompson, president and chief counsel for the law center.

The city founders traveled from Bavaria in 1845 to settle a unique German community inside the United States. They are represented on the city shield by the swath of grain and the rose with the cross. Other parts of the shield depict the Bavarian region from which the missionaries came, officials said.

Today the city is a magnet for tourists and visitors who want to see the ethnic heritage that has made the city famous.

The council voted at a recent meeting to retain the TMLC to defend the shield, and its related cross in the city’s Cross Park, from attack.

“These symbols serve to link and promote Frankenmuth’s unique origins and history – all secular purposes,” said Thompson. “The sign at Cross Park expresses gratitude from a people with a missionary history. We need not purge all historical references to religion merely to satisfy militant atheists.”

There has been a complaint about the shield, and the city also has been on the receiving end of threats of legal action for the city park that was built in 1976. Cross Park was one of three projects the city created to celebrate the bicentennial of the United States. There’s a log cabin as well as a cross in the park, “both representing the history of the founding of this ‘grateful’ community,” officials said.

Original Link.

Idaho Decency Advocates Win Library Fight

Friday, June 6th, 2008

The Idaho Values Alliance has won a victory against the Nampa city library. At issue were two books, one of them with explicit descriptions of homosexual acts.

Idaho Values Alliance spokesman Bryan Fischer says the books were within reach of young children. “…[a]nd the library staff, despite repeated appeals from concerned families, had made little or no effort to keep this material out of the hands of children,” he adds.

Fischer notes that by definition Idaho state law determined the books to be harmful to minors, which he says disturbed him as to why the librarians refused to protect the children in this case.

But after a campaign that included Generation Life and Nampa Mayor Tom Dale, library officials opted to remove the books and guaranteed nothing similar would be on the shelves in the future.

Original Link.

Habitat for Humanity Ends Land Deal With Planned Parenthood

Friday, June 6th, 2008

Good move!!

(CNSNews.com) – The Sarasota, Fla., chapter of a Christian ministry dedicated to housing the poor was praised by pro-life activists on Wednesday for terminating its connection with the local chapter of the nation’s largest provider of abortions.

After the board of directors of Habitat for Humanity of Sarasota, Inc., voted to disengage itself from Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida and not go through with a planned land deal, Jim Sedlak, vice president for American Life League (ALL), said in a news release that his organization was “extremely pleased” with the board’s decision.

“In early May, Sarasota Habitat had agreed to buy a piece of land from Planned Parenthood for $10 and agreed to build multi-family housing” on the property in the Rosemary District north of downtown Sarasota, Sedlak said.

“This agreement allowed Planned Parenthood to fulfill a zoning requirement it needed to get an occupancy permit for a new abortion facility it is building” on the site, he added.

Then on May 5, the Sarasota City Commission approved the collaboration on a 3-2 vote.

Organizations that work with Planned Parenthood, however, will likely be viewed negatively by many people in the community, said Sedlak. “Planned Parenthood is a controversial organization,” he said, “and that controversy will transfer to any group associated with it.”

Sedlak added in his statement that ALL “worked with local pro-lifers and publicized this fact across the country, resulting in a large number of phone calls to local Habitat offices, as well as Habitat for Humanity International offices.”

As a result, Duane Bates, director of public and media relations for the national Habitat organization, told Cybercast News Service that “Habitat for Humanity of Sarasota has declined a donation of land from Planned Parenthood, stating that accepting the land ‘would not be in the best interests of our ongoing work in the community, the families we seek to serve or the broader Habitat for Humanity community.'”

Original Link.

Obama Flip-Flops on Jerusalem Division Question

Friday, June 6th, 2008

And the dems only hope, Barack Obama, continues to flip-flop on his stance on just about everything. What is this man’s position on anything? Good luck trying to figure it out.

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama did not rule out Palestinian sovereignty over parts of Jerusalem when he called for Israel’s capital to remain “undivided,” his campaign told The Jerusalem Post Thursday.

“Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided,” Obama declared Wednesday, to rousing applause from the 7,000-plus attendees at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference.

But a campaign adviser clarified Thursday that Obama believes “Jerusalem is a final status issue, which means it has to be negotiated between the two parties” as part of “an agreement that they both can live with.”

“Two principles should apply to any outcome,” which the adviser gave as: “Jerusalem remains Israel’s capital and it’s not going to be divided by barbed wire and checkpoints as it was in 1948-1967.”

He refused, however, to rule out other configurations, such as the city also serving as the capital of a Palestinian state or Palestinian sovereignty over Arab neighborhoods.

“Beyond those principles, all other aspects are for the two parties to agree at final status negotiations,” the Obama adviser said.

Many on the right of the political spectrum among America’s Jews welcomed Obama’s remarks at AIPAC, but the clarification of his position left several cold.

“The Orthodox Union is extremely disappointed in this revision of Senator Obama’s important statement about Jerusalem,” said Nathan Diament, director of public policy for the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations. He had sent out a release Wednesday applauding Obama’s Jerusalem remarks in front of AIPAC.

“In the current context, everyone understands that saying ‘Jerusalem… must remain undivided’ means that the holy city must remain unified under Israeli rule, as it has been since 1967,” Diament explained.

“If Senator Obama intended his remarks at AIPAC to be understood in this way, he said nothing that would reasonably lead to such a different interpretation.”

Morton Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America and another Jewish activist who had originally lauded Obama’s statement, now called the candidate’s words “troubling.”

“It means he used the term inappropriately, possibly to mislead strong supporters of Israel that he supports something he doesn’t really believe,” Klein charged.

Original Link.

Anniversary of D-Day, World War Two Invasion of France

Friday, June 6th, 2008

Today is the 64th anniversary of the D-Day invasion of France by allied troops. As more and more of our World War Two vets pass away, join me in expressing our gratitude for the sacrifices they made to bring freedom to oppressed people all over the world.

The Normandy Landings were the first operations of the Allied Powers’ invasion of Normandy, also known as Operation Neptune and Operation Overlord, during World War II. D-Day for the operation, postponed 24 hours, became June 6, 1944, H-Hour was 6:30 am. The assault was conducted in two phases: an air assault landing of American and British airborne divisions shortly after midnight, and an amphibious landing of Allied infantry and armoured divisions on the coast of France commencing at 06:30 British Double Summer Time. It required the transport of soldiers and materiel from England and Wales by troop carrying aeroplanes and ships, the assault landings, air support, naval interdiction of the English Channel and naval fire-support. There were also subsidiary operations to distract the Kriegsmarine and prevent its interference in the landing areas.

D-Day

D-Day

D-Day

The operation was the largest single-day invasion of all time, with over 130,000 troops landed on June 6th 1944. 195,700 Allied naval and merchant navy personnel were involved.[2] The landings took place along a stretch of the Normandy coast divided into five sections: Gold, Juno, Omaha, Sword and Utah.

The order of battle for the landings was approximately as follows, east to west:

British sector (Second Army)

  • 6th Airborne Division was delivered by parachute and glider to the east of the River Orne to protect the left flank. The division contained 7,900 men.
  • 1st Special Service Brigade comprising No.3, No.4, No.6 and No.45 (RM) Commandos landed at Ouistreham in Queen Red sector (leftmost). No.4 Commando were augmented by 1 and 8 Troop (both French) of No.10 (Inter Allied) Commando.
  • I Corps, 3rd Infantry Division and the 27th Armoured Brigade on Sword Beach, from Ouistreham to Lion-sur-Mer.
  • No.41(RM) Commando (part of 4th Special Service Brigade) landed on the far right of Sword Beach, where 29,000 men would land.
  • Canadian 3rd Infantry Division, Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade and No.48 (RM) Commando on Juno Beach, from Saint-Aubin-sur-Mer to Courseulles-sur-Mer, where 21,400 troops would land.
  • No.46(RM) Commando (part of 4th Special Service Brigade) at Juno to scale the cliffs on the left side of the Orne River estuary and destroy a battery. (Battery fire proved negligible so No.46 were kept off-shore as a floating reserve and landed on D+1).
  • XXX Corps, 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division and 8th Armoured Brigade, consisting of 25,000 men landing on Gold Beach,[6] from Courseulles to Arromanches.
  • No.47(RM) Commando (part of 4th Special Service Brigade) on the West flank of Gold beach.
  • 79th Armoured Division operated specialist armour (“Hobart’s Funnies”) for mine-clearing, recovery and assault tasks. These were distributed around the Anglo-Canadian beaches.
  • Overall, the British contingent would consist of 83,115 troops (61,715 of them British).

    25 Australian Infantry landed, none died. Over 3,000 Australians helped in the bombing and airborn invasion.

    U.S. Sector (First Army)

  • V Corps, 1st Infantry Division and 29th Infantry Division making up 34,250 troops for Omaha Beach, from Sainte-Honorine-des-Pertes to Vierville-sur-Mer.
  • 2nd and 5th Ranger Battalions at Pointe du Hoc (The 5th diverted to Omaha).
  • VII Corps, 4th Infantry Division and the 359th RCT of the 90th Infantry Division comprising of 23,250 men landing on Utah Beach, around Pouppeville and La Madeleine.
  • 101st Airborne Division by parachute around Vierville to support Utah Beach landings.
  • 82nd Airborne Division by parachute around Sainte-Mère-Église, protecting the right flank. They had originally been tasked with dropping further west, in the middle part of the Cotentin, allowing the sea-landing forces to their east easier access across the peninsula, and preventing the Germans from reinforcing the north part of the peninsula. The plans were later changed to move them much closer to the beachhead, as at the last minute the German 91st Air Landing Division was determined to be in the area.
  • In total, the Americans contributed 73,000 men (15,500 were airborne).

    D-Day

    D-Day

    D-Day

    Omaha Beach

    Elements of the 1st Infantry Division and 29th Infantry Division faced the veteran German 352nd Infantry Division, one of the best trained on the beaches. Allied intelligence failed to realize that the relatively low-quality 716th Infantry Division (static) had been replaced by the 352nd the previous March. Omaha was also the most heavily fortified beach, with high bluffs defended by funneled mortars, machine guns, and artillery, and the pre-landing aerial and naval bombardment of the bunkers proved to be ineffective. Difficulties in navigation caused the majority of landings to drift eastwards, missing their assigned sectors, and the initial assault waves of tanks, infantry and engineers took heavy casualties. The official record stated that “within 10 minutes of the ramps being lowered, [the leading] company had become inert, leaderless and almost incapable of action. Every officer and sergeant had been killed or wounded […] It had become a struggle for survival and rescue”. Only a few gaps were blown in the beach obstacles, resulting in problems for subsequent landings. The heavily defended draws, the only vehicular routes off the beach, could not be taken and two hours after the first assault the beach was closed for all but infantry landings. Commanders (including General Omar Bradley) considered abandoning the beachhead, but small units of infantry, often forming ad hoc groups, supported by naval artillery and the surviving tanks, eventually infiltrated the coastal defenses by scaling the bluffs between strongpoints. Further infantry landings were able to exploit the initial penetrations and by the end of the day two isolated footholds had been established. American casualties at Omaha on D-Day numbered around 3,000 out of 34,000 men, most in the first few hours, while the defending forces suffered 1,200 killed, wounded or missing. The tenuous beachhead was expanded over the following days, and the original D-Day objectives were accomplished by D+3.

    D-Day

    D-Day

    The beaches at Normandy are still referred to on maps and signposts by their invasion codenames. There are several vast cemeteries in the area. The American cemetery, in Colleville-sur-Mer, contains row upon row of identical white crosses and Stars of David, immaculately kept, commemorating the American dead. Commonwealth graves, in many locations, use white headstones engraved with the person’s religious symbol and their unit insignia. The largest cemetery in Normandy is the La Cambe German war cemetery, which features granite stones almost flush with the ground and groups of low-set crosses. There is also a Polish cemetery.

    D-Day

    Normandy Landings – From Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia.

    “That’s Not a Police Problem. We No Longer Have a Moral Compass. Anything Goes”

    Friday, June 6th, 2008

    The title of this post really brings to light the crux of what is wrong with our nation. While my atheist friends want all us to believe that Christian values are of no use to us anymore; that we have “outgrown” the need for religion, I really would like to know how they can look at the moral behavior of today’s society and tell me that people are behaving “better”. This type of act would not have taken place when I was child. Someone would have stopped to help. We would all remember the account of the “Good Samaritan” from the Bible. We would have helped.
    Not so now. Where is this “Utopia” the atheist say we are headed toward? If the behavior of these people is any indication, then I can truly state that we are not moving toward a utopia, but taken giant steps backwards.
    Where does a moral compass come from? It comes from God and the Bible. When we throw absolutes out the window and make everything “relative”, this is where we end up.

    HARTFORD, Conn. — A 78-year-old man is tossed like a rag doll by a hit-and-run driver and lies motionless on a busy city street as car after car goes by. Pedestrians gawk but appear to do nothing. One driver stops briefly but then pulls back into traffic. A man on a scooter slowly circles the victim before zipping away.

    The chilling scene — captured on video by a streetlight surveillance camera — has touched off a round of soul-searching in Hartford, with the capital city’s biggest newspaper blaring “SO INHUMANE” on the front page and the police chief lamenting: “We no longer have a moral compass.”

    “We have no regard for each other,” said Chief Daryl Roberts, who on Wednesday released the video in hopes of making an arrest in the accident that left Angel Arce Torres in critical condition.

    However, Roberts and other city officials backtracked on Thursday. After initially saying he was unsure whether anyone called 911, he and other city officials appeared at a news conference in which they said that four people dialed 911 within a minute of the accident, and that Torres received medical attention shortly after that.

    City Council President Calixto Torres said viewers of the 1 1/2-minute videotape might mistakenly believe that no one helped.

    “I think this moved too quickly,” he said. “I think it moved too quick and we were putting information out that was incomplete. What I think was missing is the fact that this happened in a very short period of time.”

    Roberts said his initial angry reaction was based on what he saw in the video. “The video was very graphic and sent a very bad message,” the police chief said.

    The hit-and-run took place in daylight last Friday at about 5:45 p.m. in a working-class neighborhood close to downtown in this city of 125,000.

    In the video, Torres, a retired forklift operator, walks in the two-way street just blocks from the state Capitol after buying milk at a grocery. A tan Toyota and a dark Honda that is apparently chasing it veer across the center line, and Torres is struck by the Honda. Both cars then dart down a side street.

    Nine cars pass Torres as a few people stare from the sidewalk. Some approach Torres, but no one gets any closer than a couple of yards and no one attempts to stop or divert traffic until a police cruiser responding to an unrelated call arrives on the scene after about a minute and a half.

    “Like a dog they left him there,” said a disgusted Jose Cordero, 37, who was with friends Thursday not far from where Torres was struck. Robert Luna, who works at a store nearby, said: “Nobody did nothing.”

    One witness, Bryant Hayre, told The Hartford Courant he didn’t feel comfortable helping Torres, who he said was bleeding and conscious.

    The accident — and bystanders’ apparent callousness — dominated morning radio talk shows.

    “It was one of the most despicable things I’ve seen by one human being to another,” the Rev. Henry Brown, a community activist, said in an interview. “I don’t understand the mind-set anymore. It’s kind of mind-boggling. We’re supposed to help each other. You see somebody fall, you want to offer a helping hand.”

    Gov. M. Jodi Rell said the video is “beyond chilling.”

    “There seems little question that the driver of the car that struck Angel Arce Torres on May 30 knew what happened,” she said in a written statement. “Almost as chilling is the reaction of some passers-by who did little in the moments after the crash to assist Mr. Torres.”

    The victim’s son, Angel Arce, begged the public for help in finding the driver.

    “I want justice for my father,” he said. “He’s a good man. He’s in pain. The family is in pain.”

    The hit-and-run is the second violent crime to shock Hartford this week. On Monday, former Deputy Mayor Nicholas Carbone, 71, was beaten and robbed while walking to breakfast. He remains hospitalized and faces brain surgery.

    “There was a time they would have helped that man across the street. Now they mug and assault him,” police chief said. “Anything goes.”

    Original Link.