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31  January, 2018

UK: First sitting MP to be jailed in 28 years is black

Why am I not surprised?


Fiona Onasanya has been sentenced to three months in prison for perverting the course of justice - but will cling on to her constituency seat and its income

A Labour MP who dreamed of becoming Britain’s first black prime minister was convicted at the Old Bailey of lying to the police about a speeding charge.

Fiona Onasanya, a former party whip, was found to have colluded with her brother Festus after she was caught speeding just weeks after being elected as an MP in last year's election.

During her retrial, called after a previous jury failed to reach a verdict, the court heard that the 35-year-old had been texting as well as speeding but had “persistently and deliberately” lied to police to avoid prosecution.

The verdict now threatens to bring an end to Ms Onasanya’s short-lived political career, with Labour confirming that it had suspended the whip and expected her to resign in order for a by-election to be held in her Peterborough constituency.

Under the law, Ms Onasanya would have to quit if she is sentenced to more than one year in prison, although Labour insiders claimed that she may delay stepping down until sentencing.

Jurors heard how Ms Onasanya and her brother had gone to extraordinary lengths to avoid her being penalised for the offence, including claiming that a Russian acquaintance, Aleks Antipow, had been behind the wheel, despite him being overseas when the offence was committed.

When challenged by investigating officers, Ms Onasanya, who is a devout Christian, said she stood by her account.

She later changed course when her brother pleaded guilty to three counts of perverting the course of justice, alleging that he had falsely filled out the notice without her knowledge.

Throughout the trial, Ms Onasanya asserted her innocence both inside and outside of court, with one Labour staffer telling The Daily Telegraph that she was so confident of being acquitted that she had begun planning events for the coming months days after police first pressed charges.

This newspaper can also reveal that on November 5, less than a week before her first trial commenced, Ms Onasanya began advertising for a constituency support manager.

However, her version of events were seriously undermined when her former communications manager, Dr Christian DeFeo, came forward during her trial to allege that she had visited his home - near to where the offence occurred - that evening.

Dr DeFeo said he felt “morally and legally” obliged to come forward, adding that never in his “darkest dreams” had he imagined giving evidence against a woman he helped elect.

Prosecuting, David Jeremy QC, claimed that Ms Onasanya was a “determined and resilient” storyteller who had attempted to “sacrifice” her brother to escape conviction.

He added: “What you have done is create a story that makes his crimes so much worse and you have done it to try and get yourself acquitted of this charge. You have sacrificed your own brother.”

Following the verdict, Donna Rayner of the Crown Prosecution Service said that both Ms Onasanya and her brother had “lied to the authorities in the hope they could avoid the consequences of their speeding offences”.

It comes 18 months after Ms Onasanya pulled off one of the shock results of last year’s election, unseating the senior Conservative MP Stewart Jackson by a wafer-thin margin of just 607 votes.

Virtually unknown within the party and local constituency, she told a local newspaper that the victory was down to God, adding: “I did not achieve this alone – I thank God for His favour.”

A source close to Ms Onasanya also claimed that during the election campaign, when told her prospects of winning were slim, she replied:  “I am going to win. God told me I’m going to win”.

One insider close to the Peterborough MP said her conviction in God partly stemmed from a near-death experience as a child, when she was involved in a collision with a car.

They claimed that Ms Onasanya told them they she had been badly injured, but rather than being taken to hospital, her mother took her home and prayed that she recovered.

She has also expressed a desire to become Britain’s first black prime minister, which she said would “open the door so others can go beyond”.

A Labour spokesman said the party was “deeply disappointed” with her behaviour, adding that it fell “well below what is expected of politicians.”

SOURCE





'If it wasn't for Winston Churchill you would be goose-stepping to Holyrood': Piers Morgan blasts 'smirking ginger turd' MSP who branded wartime PM a 'white supremacist mass murderer'


The useless little twerp himself

Piers Morgan has savaged a Scottish politician in a furious TV debate after he described Sir Winston Churchill as a 'white supremacist mass murderer'.  

The Good Morning Britain host, 53, told Scottish Greens MSP Ross Greer, 24: 'If it wasn't for Winston Churchill you would be speaking German and goose-stepping your way to Holyrood.'

Piers branded Mr Greer a 'nasty, sneering young man' and accused him of offering 'no balance, perspective or any sense that what Winston Churchill did for this country was actually good.'

In response the young MSP said Piers's version of events were 'wildly ahistorical'.

When the presenter blasted him on a point about the Bengali famine, Mr Greer said: 'You're getting into a tantrum Piers, that's very snowflake of you.'

Mr Greer, Europe spokesman for the Scottish Greens, sparked outrage with his Twitter rant about Britain's great wartime Prime Minister on January 25. 

His controversial tweet generated thousands of responses, including several from Piers Morgan who branded him a 'thick ginger turd'.

After a heated exchange Piers challenged Mr Greer to a TV debate.

Speaking on the show this morning, he demanded to know why Mr Greer had written the inflammatory tweet.

Mr Greer said Churchill was a 'racist because he hated Indians with a passion and branded them a beastly people with a beastly religion'. He also claimed the former PM 'advocated using poison gas against uncivilised tribes' in Africa, as well as using hateful rhetoric against people in Afghanistan and Kurdistan. 

But when he accused the late, great Churchill of being 'responsible for the Bengali famine of 1943', Piers was unable to control his emotions. He said: 'That is a complete and utter lie.

'In the middle of the Second World War Churchill is seen in the papers to be very concerned about the famine in Bengal, going to Canada, Australia and Franklin D. Roosevelt in America, beseeching world leaders to help the Bengalis. 'What you're saying isn't just offensive, it's a downright lie.

'I get enraged by this, because if it wasn't for Winston Churchill you would be speaking German and goose-stepping your way to Holyrood.'

Mr Greer was responding to a Conservative party tweet from January 24 marking the anniversary of Churchill's death calling him 'the greatest Briton to have ever lived'.

Greer, who at 24 is Scotland's youngest MSP ever, was accused of 'attention seeking' after saying: 'Once again for the old people at the back: Churchill was a white supremacist mass murderer'. He caused further controversy by describing anyone who admires the Second World War leader – credited with helping save Britain from Nazi Germany – as 'crass and simple minded'.

Mr Greer also spoke to Bob Seely MP, whose great, great uncle served alongside Churchill. Mr Seely said Mr Greer's argument was just 'trite infantile smearing' and 'eloquent stupidity'. The Isle of Wight MP highlighted that by branding Churchill a racist, Mr Greer is saying he was no better than Adolf Hitler.

Piers added: 'I know he was a flawed character, but Winston Churchill single-handedly took this country out of the abyss.

'You are saying the man who saved us from the Nazis is actually no better than a Nazi himself.'

Throughout the debate Piers told Mr Greer to 'stop laughing, smirking and sneering' because 'the people who lived through the war are not laughing'.

Exasperated, he ended the interview by saying: 'You denigrate this great national icon.  Well, do you know who I find revolting? You.'

Mr Greer, elected in 2016 aged 21, was defiant over the row. He said: 'This is the real, verified history of Churchill and the one known throughout much of the world'.  He added: 'If that's uncomfortable to some here, it's just a sign of how uneducated Britain is of our own shameful history.'

His Twitter attack came the day after the rest of the UK, including Prime Minister Theresa May, marked the anniversary of Sir Winston's death on January 24, 1965, aged 90.

Lee Pollock, of the International Churchill Society, said: 'It seems to me this young man's not as important as he would like, so he has found the biggest target he can in order to get the most attention with a radical point of view. It's a cheap trick.'

Mr Greer's comments highlighted Sir Winston's pre-war activity and his involvement in colonial rule of India.

Other Scottish politicians jumped to Sir Winston's defence on Monday. Scottish Tory whip Maurice Golden said: 'Sir Winston Churchill is one of the defining figures of western democracy… seeking to diminish him is a disservice to the millions of men and women who fought to preserve our freedom.'

SOURCE





Antifa moron pulls a gun on cops

His disrespect for the cops cost him his life

A person (who apparently uses they/them/their pronouns) was ventilated by police officers at Cascade Middle School in Eugene, Oregon, after they pulled a gun on the officers who were attempting to take them into custody. The entire incident was captured by body cameras worn by the police officers.

The ma’an, identified as Charlie Landeros, can be seen wearing a shirt that reads “Smash The Patriarchy And Chill” as police are wrestling them to the ground. Landeros draws a handgun from their waistband, and the two officers try to gain control of their arm, as Landeros points the gun at the officers. Then the cops opened fire.

Landeros was a well known leftist activist in the Eugene, having led and participated in protests, specifically at University Of Oregon.

According to the U of O student newspaper, The Daily Emerald, Landeros was also a member of an armed antifa group known as “Community Armed Self Defense.”

From the Daily Emerald:

Landeros, who used they/them/theirs pronouns, led a student protest in October 2017 that disrupted UO President Michael Schill’s state of the university address. Landeros and other protestors characterized Schill as a CEO and said that the purpose of the protest was to “empower marginalized students on campus.”

Landeros was a member of Community Armed Self Defense, a group that was created as a “new liberatory and inclusive space for all oppressed peoples to learn about armed self-defense,” according to the group’s Facebook page, which is no longer publicly available on Facebook as of 4 p.m. Saturday.

Community Armed Self Defense’s Facebook page said that they could not count on the police to protect marginalized people, and that firearms help marginalized groups protect themselves.

“The police are not here to protect us. They are more likely to harm us themselves than they are to ‘serve or protect’ us,” the group wrote on their Facebook page description.

SOURCE




 


The Left Isn’t Stopping at Merely Censoring the Right’s Free Speech

No one is talking about the most disturbing aspect of the confrontational incident involving the Covington Catholic school boys. Those boys were not speaking. No one was trying to silence their voices or shout them down. They were merely standing there wearing MAGA hats. Not content with just silencing conservatives, the left is now actively trying to chase conservatives out of the public sphere and society at large. The Native American man, Nathan Phillips, who confronted the boys with his drum was trying to chase them away from the Lincoln Memorial. The person who edited the video to make it appear that the boys were the ones accosting Phillips wanted to justify what Phillips was doing. The media went along with it and condemned the boys.  

This type of totalitarian censorship has been creeping into society more and more during the Trump administration. It is totalitarian because the First Amendment protects both the freedom of speech and the freedom of assembly. Someone merely shows up in a public place wearing a MAGA hat and they risk being attacked. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders showed up to eat dinner with her family at a restaurant and the owners kicked her out. Perhaps most frightening of all, Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s family didn’t even leave their home and they had masked protesters yelling outside and banging on their door, chanting, “We know where you sleep at night.” The message being sent is even if you avoid the public square, you’re not even safe in your own home. 

This is a logical extension of the left’s tactics of resorting to silencing their ideological opponents because they can’t beat them in substantive debates. This is how Antifa arose. Those young, angry Millennials don’t have the brainpower to defeat conservative arguments, so they resort to violence. The domestic terrorist group shows up at conservative events and throws projectiles at conservatives and the police officers who are trying to protect them. Even if you don’t say anything, your mere presence as a conservative puts you in danger from these radicals.

Fortunately, along with this surge of intimidation tactics by the left is a new offensiveness by conservatives. Instead of sitting back and taking it, conservatives are fighting back aggressively. Before, the left would make false claims that conservatives were racist, sexist, greedy, uncaring, etc. Now, conservatives have learned to turn those criticisms around and place them squarely where they belong — on the left. Instead of trying to defend themselves from amorphous charges that require them to prove a negative, conservatives are changing the focus to the actions of the left.

A new generation of young black conservative activists, led by Candace Owens, isn’t trying to defend conservatives from charges of racism. Instead, they are pointing out the racism of the Democrats, from their history as slave owners and segregationists to their elitist attitudes toward blacks today.

Similarly, Brandon Straka, a gay former Democrat leading the #WalkAway movement, isn’t trying to defend conservatives from accusations of homophobia. Instead, he focuses on how the Democrats mistreat gays and other minority groups and view them as just competing interests.

Conservatives are finally getting mad. They’re tired of being bullied. They’re tired of the name calling. They’re sick of being called things they’re not. The left has bit off more than it can chew. Making decent people out to be monsters went too far. Conservatives have woken up and realized playing defensive and nice wasn’t working. It’s time to use the left’s tactics back on them — although not going so far as Alinsky tactics, which include lying. 

The way to fight this newest tactic by the left of trying to stamp out conservatives merely from appearing in society is to call it for what it is — fascism. Some have already figured out what is happening and are calling Antifa fascists. More of this needs to take place. Otherwise Antifa and its comrades will make even more inroads into shutting conservatives out of society.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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30 January, 2018

The Muslim Sisterhood

The Muslim Sisterhood is a growing contingent of radical Islamists in the highest offices of our land.

While the Leftist media insists that critics of Islamic terrorism and misogyny are "Islamophobes," the Muslim Sisterhood makes no attempt to hide its support for terrorists and anti-American radicals.

But their Left Wing CYA network is desperate to bury these truths, because that's the only way they can accomplish their radical agendas.

Democratic congresswoman, Ilhan Omar, makes no apologies for her deep rooted hatred of everything our country stands for. She didn't hesitate to join the progressive mob against the Covington Catholic students who were viciously attacked by black racists, and a Native American, America-hating radical.

When questioned about her inflammatory, Jew-hating statement about "Israel hypnotizing the world" she didn't even try to hide her seething antisemitism.

Rashida Tlaib may not wear a hijab — but what she does and doesn't wear speaks volumes. While celebrating her first official days as a U.S. Congresswoman, Tlaib draped herself in a Palestinian flag and posed for pictures with terrorist sympathizers. On her congressional office wall is a map the state of Israel marked "Palestine."

These 2 women aren't just a couple of radical outliers in the Democratic Party: they're the new face of it.

There is total solidarity and support for them and their anti-American agendas from other Democrat stars like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Keith Ellison and Andre Carson.

Barack Obama set this "radical transformation of our country" into motion back in 2008, supporting the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, and America's Islamist enemies in Iran.

Now a decade later, with Nancy Pelosi's blessing, the Muslim Sisterhood in the person of Ilhan Omar has a seat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee with full security clearance, and on the Government Oversight Committee (Tlaib).

What's standing in their way for the moment are President Trump and patriots keeping the pressure on the Left with our constant research, campaigns and advocacy.

We've been able to add profiles on both Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar to Discover the Networks. Frontpagemag.com has been relentless in its exposure of the anti-American barbarism of the Muslim Brotherhood and its clones, and of the Brotherhood ties of Omar and Tlaib.

This no small matter in the current political environment where the hatred directed at defenders of America and exposers of Islamic atrocities can be severe. Our reputations have been shredded and sources of our funding blocked.

Our fight is far from over. All of us have to step up our efforts lest we lose the country we love.

Email from David Horowitz -- info@horowitzfreedomcenter.org






Archbishop of Canterbury apologises 'unreservedly' for CoE's 'mistakes' in handling Bishop Bell allegations

So hard for the Anglican hierarchy to admit that they paid out on a false claim

The Archbishop of Canterbury was accused yesterday of persisting with a “malign” attack on Bishop George Bell after he refused to exonerate him following a “copycat” allegation of historic child sex abuse.

An official report published yesterday concluded that a 70-year-old allegation against Bishop Bell was unfounded. It found that the evidence of the complainant – a woman named only as “Alison” – was “unreliable” and “inconsistent”.

Alison had written to the Church of England, claiming she had been sexually assaulted by the bishop in 1949 when she was aged nine.

The letter was sent a week after the Church of England was found to have wrongly besmirched Bishop Bell in its handling of a previous complaint brought by a woman known only as “Carol”.

The latest report suggested that Carol’s allegation had “prompted a false recollection in Alison’s mind”.

Yesterday, the Most Rev Justin Welby “apologised unreservedly for the mistakes” in the handling of the complaint made by Carol. But he declined to publicly clear the former Bishop of Chichester of any wrongdoing or retract a statement that he had a “significant cloud ... over his name” and that he had been accused of “great wickedness”.

In a private letter, however, sent to Bishop Bell’s closest surviving relative, his niece Barbara Whitley, he wrote: “Once again I offer my sincerest apologies both personally and on behalf of the Church. We did wrong to you and before God.”

Bishop Bell, one of the towering figures of the Church in the 20th century, has been unable to defend himself, having died in 1958. But his supporters urged the Church to restore his reputation after two reports exonerated him.

Ms Whitley, 94, said yesterday: “I would like to see my uncle’s name cleared before I die.”

Desmond Browne QC, a leading barrister who acted for the bishop’s family and who was christened by him in 1949, said: “What is now clear is that the investigations by two experienced lawyers [have established] George Bell’s innocence. But not once [has] the Archbishop of Canterbury offered Bell the presumption of innocence.”

Alison had alleged that Bell, the former bishop of Chichester, had sat her on his lap and “fondled her”.

But the report by Timothy Briden, an ecclesiastical lawyer and vicar general of Canterbury, concluded that in her oral evidence “her attempts to repeat what had been written in the letter displayed, however, a disturbing degree of inconsistency”.

Alison had alleged in the letter the abuse had taken place indoors in front of her mother but in oral testimony thought she had been assaulted outdoors. He concluded that her claim was “unfounded”.

The existence of Alison’s complaint made in December 2017 was made public by the Church of England at a time when it was facing increasing criticism for its handling of the earlier allegation by Carol. Alison’s claim was passed in January 2018 to police, who then dropped the case.

Mr Briden also investigated a separate complaint made by an 80-year-old witness – known only as K in the report – that his mother had told him that she had seen Bishop Bell “carrying out a sexual act with a man over his Rolls-Royce” in 1967.

Bishop Bell died in 1958 and did not have a Rolls-Royce. The report said: “The longer that the statement from K’s mother is analysed, the more implausible it appears.”

Lord Carlile, the QC who carried out the damning inquiry into the handling of Carol’s claim, was scathing of the Church of England’s decision to make public the police inquiry into Alison’s complaint.

Lord Carlile said: “I am astonished that the Church [made] public the further complaint against Bishop Bell and the error has been proved by the conclusion of this latest inquiry.”

Prof Andrew Chandler, Bishop Bell’s biographer and spokesman for the George Bell Group, said “the claim by Alison appeared a copycat of Carol’s complaint”. Carol was paid £15,000 compensation in a legal settlement in October 2015.

In his statement yesterday, Archbishop Welby described Bishop Bell as a “remarkable role model”, adding: “I apologise unreservedly for the mistakes made in the process surrounding the handling of the original allegation against Bishop George Bell.”

But he went on: “It is still the case that there is a woman who came forward with a serious allegation ... and this cannot be ignored or swept under the carpet.”

The current Bishop of Chichester, Martin Warner, also declined yesterday to exonerate his predecessor. But he accepted that a public statement he made signifying Bishop Bell’s guilt and released in 2015 after Carol’s claim was settled was probably now an error.

“Knowing what we now do [we] would want to re-examine that and I don’t think we would [make that statement].”

SOURCE






Trump Admin Moves to Protect Religious Liberty in Adoptions, Foster Care

The Trump administration is working to protect religious adoption and foster care agencies that have been threatened by "burdensome regulations" imposed in the closing days of the Obama presidency.

Days before leaving office President Obama implemented new regulations that targeted religious foster care providers by requiring recipients of federal assistance to abandon "discriminatory" standards in placement. South Carolina asked the Department of Health and Human Services for an exemption to protect one of its largest foster care agencies, Miracle Hills Ministries, which only places children in Christian households. The Trump administration granted the exemption, saying that religious partners were vital to caring for children. The Obama-era rules could run afoul of religious liberty protections, according to Lynn Johnson, assistant secretary for the department's Administration for Children and Families.

"Faith-based organizations that provide foster care services not only perform a great service for their communities, they are exercising a legally protected right to practice their faith through good works," Johnson said in a statement. "The government should not be in the business of forcing foster care providers to close their doors because of their faith.  Religious freedom is a fundamental human right."

Religious providers have been forced to close their doors after regulators in states such as Illinois and Massachusetts because they did not place children in homosexual households. Johnson said the federal government should not pressure religious believers to violate the tenets of their faith in order to serve vulnerable children. The United States faces a shortage of providers even as the demand for them has increased amid the opioid crisis, according to the agency.

"By granting this request to South Carolina, HHS is putting foster care capacity needs ahead of burdensome regulations that are in conflict with the law," Johnson said. "It protects minors who are in need of as many options as possible for being placed in loving foster families."

Some churches are fighting back against attempts to shutter services they have offered for more than a century. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has accused the city of violating its religious liberty by attempting to cut off their adoption and foster care programs even as the city faces a shortage "crisis." Mark Rienzi, the archdiocese's attorney at the non-profit Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, said he was pleased to see HHS protect religious freedom.

"There were raised fears that some HHS requirements would kick religious providers out, so it was very good for the agency make clear that that's not what federal law requires," Rienzi said. "This takes federal law and the Constitution's requirement to respect the civil rights of believers seriously."

Rienzi said the agency announcement should send a clear message to regulators at the state and local level. He called the actions of Philadelphia "outrageous," as the city has provided no evidence of discrimination or complaints from gay individuals about the Catholic operations.

"There is not actually a class of people being stopped by the Catholic Church," he said. "The city is willing to leave the homes of available foster parents empty just for working with Catholics … it is shameful."

Religious liberty advocates and various religious sects, including the Catholic Church and Southern Baptists praised the administration's decision, but others said the exemption was only a first step. Terry Schilling, executive director of the American Principles Project, said HHS should take steps to repeal the Obama-era rules and issue affirmative protections for religious providers who may still be targeted by future administrations that use "the power of the State to bully people who just want to live out their faith and serve their communities."

"We appreciate that Trump's HHS has shown a desire to overturn this shameful Obama-era regulation, and we encourage them to keep up the good work and finish the job as soon as possible," Schilling said.

SOURCE






How Hollywood social engineers turned 2018's “The Predator” into a big budget flop

I had the misfortune of watching the recently released stinker from The Predator franchise on DVD. Based on word-of-mouth and scathing reviews, I knew enough to stay away from it in the theatres but I was a fan of the 1987 original, so it was tough to shun.

Unfortunately, the lousy ratings were warranted and even the low 28 per cent viewer rating on Rotten Tomatoes was generous!

In addition to boasting that which is known as “a plot,” the original 1987 Predator also had an uber-macho cast that today would be seen as “toxic masculinity” — so the new version offered a heapin’ helpin’ of “girl power”, by way of a female scientist who inexplicably morphs into a super-soldier halfway through the flick.

And then there’s the “big reveal” scene when we all get to learn why these irregular space aliens are coming to Earth on an increasingly frequent basis.

Spoiler alert! The explanation is …. climate change.

The good news is, very few of us are buying into the junk that the social engineers in Hollywood are trying to ram down our throats, but still they persist.

Why can’t the Hollywood weirdos go back to the good ol’ days of making sci-fi and action adventure flicks that drop the virtue-signalling in favour of plot-driven nail-biters?

If I want to watch progressive propaganda films that take their narrative cues from the likes of Al Gore and David Suzuki, I’d rent them to begin with!

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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29 January, 2018

The Left’s Use of Intimidation to Silence Christians

If you’re Christian, shut up. That’s been the unmistakable message of our current culture in recent weeks.

Karen Pence has been lambasted for her decision to teach at a Christian school. Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, after asking a judicial nominee about his membership in the Catholic Knights of Columbus, has tied the organization to the “alt right.”

And a group of teenage Catholic schoolboys waiting for a bus at the March for Life, who didn’t know the mob-approved way to handle a Native American activist walking up to them, are fighting for their reputations.

Of course, this isn’t really about Karen Pence, or judicial nominee Brian Buescher, or the Covington Catholic High boys.

It’s about intimidating everyone else.

It’s telling the husband or wife of an up-and-coming lawmaker that if they want to teach at a school, it’s probably better they choose a non-Christian one, unless they want their spouse someday ensnared in a media cycle over LGBT discrimination.

It’s telling the law student who dreams of someday becoming a judge that no matter how appealing he finds joining a Catholic charitable organization, it’s probably better for his career ambitions if he doesn’t.

And it’s telling schools and students and parents that no matter if they are willing to deal with the expense and trouble of hauling dozens or hundreds of students to Washington, D.C., on buses and having them sleep on gym floors, it still might not be a good idea—because the students’ future reputations, careers, and college prospects could all be gone with one viral video.

No, that wouldn’t happen if the students came to Washington to fight for gun control or raise awareness of climate change.

Just if they’re there to speak up for the babies who can’t.

When President Donald Trump was elected—in a shock for conventional D.C. wisdom—it become obvious that there were plenty of silent Americans who, in the privacy of the ballot box, dared to defy the politically correct, woke cultural leaders of our time.

But it’s not enough to vote.

I’m glad Karen Pence, the vice president’s wife, isn’t backing down and resigning. I’m thrilled Brian Buescher is remaining a member of the Knights of Columbus, and that Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., introduced a resolution saying there’s nothing wrong with a judge being in the Knights. I’m heartened that the Covington students are fighting back, and saying they did nothing wrong.

But they can’t do this all on their own.

About 70 percent of Americans are Christian, according to the Pew Research Center.

They—and everyone who believes in religious freedom—need to start speaking up.

You don’t have to agree with Buescher’s judicial philosophy to say that in the United States, there should be no religious test for judges.

You don’t have to have attended a Catholic school or be pro-life to say that a group of teen boys being awkward around an activist—an activist who later that weekend tried to bring a group of protesters to disrupt a Catholic Mass at the basilica in D.C.—should not be a news story, much less a reputation destroyer.

You don’t have to agree with Immanuel Christian School’s faith tenets to defend Karen Pence’s right to choose the school where she wants to teach.

You know what breeds intolerance? Silence. It’s easy for someone to kvetch about the Covington boys or mock the second lady as a bigot at the water cooler if he has no reason to believe any other colleague will speak up.

We need to take a lesson from the left’s playbook.

Here’s what liberals do really well: They share their stories. And they make it personal.

We need to do the same.

Did your son or daughter go to the March for Life? Talk about it. Share how proud you were that they cared enough about the lives of unborn babies to be on a bus for 20 hours and sleep on a crowded gym floor.

And share how scared you are that they, too, could become targets of social media acvistists and mainstream media because they didn’t know the appropriate public relations strategy to deal with a protest.

Does it make you feel like an alien in your own country that what you hear from the pews on Sunday could make you ineligible to do certain jobs in our system? Express that anxiety. Tell the truth about how you don’t like being treated like a second-class citizen in your own nation.

Are you appalled that your mom’s job at a Christian school could get her branded as a bigot? Say that. Share the facts: Plenty of Christian denominations adhere to 2,000 years of sexual morality, and demand no sex outside of marriage—whether you’re straight or LGBT.

If we keep talking, things will change.

Because people know that if their colleague Kelly is pro-life, or their hair stylist Melissa is Christian, or their neighbor Bob teaches at a Christian school, they will think twice.

That doesn’t mean they will agree with Kelly or Melissa or Bob.

But it does mean they will realize it’s unfair to assume all pro-lifers hate women, or that all Christians hate LGBT people. They will realize it’s more complex than the woke leaders of social media say it is.

And then we can have real discussions and real dialogues, person to person.

I get that it’s hard. I’m often more of a coward than I’d like to be—even with the job security of working at a conservative news outlet. It’s hard to speak up sometimes, especially if you’re scared people will judge you or there will be hidden consequences—promotions that never occur, networking that abruptly stops.

But we don’t have a choice.

Right now, thought leaders in the United States are working overtime to make it clear: Stand up for your Christian beliefs, your pro-life beliefs—and you will pay.

But we can rise up, too.

If there’s one thing we should have learned in this era of Trump, it’s that standing up to bullies works.

And we need to—because there’s nothing American about a future where holding certain religious beliefs makes you a second-class citizen.

SOURCE







The Democratic Party's Holy War on Christian Orthodoxy
    
When Sen. Dianne Feinstein told Amy Coney Barrett, who is now confirmed as a judge for the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and is a potential Supreme Court nominee, that “dogma lives loudly within” her and “that’s of concern,” she wasn’t voicing concern over the nominee’s religious orthodoxy as much as she was revealing her own.

After all, Catholicism, unlike progressivism, has never inhibited anyone from faithfully executing her constitutional duties — which the judge has done with far more conviction than Feinstein. Maybe Barrett should have been asking the questions.

Recently, by unanimous consent, the Senate approved a Ben Sasse resolution that declares that it is unconstitutional to reject nominees because of their membership to the Knights of Columbus. This move was instigated by a similar incident, when Democratic Sens. Kamala Harris and Mazie Hirono criticized President Donald Trump’s nominee for the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska, Brian Buescher, for being a bit too Catholic for their liking. The Knights of Columbus, a benevolent society that still clings to antiquated notions about the dignity of human life — from the very beginning to the very end — doesn’t exactly adhere to the new progressive moral canon.

Unlike many friends on the right, I’m less offended by questions regarding dogma and belief. It’s true that the Constitution explicitly states that a federal government officeholder or employee can’t be required to adhere to or accept any particular religion or doctrine as a prerequisite to holding a federal office or job. But it’s also true that the clause directly preceding that clause requires every federal and state official to take an oath to support the Constitution. Rejecting someone over his faith alone is unquestionably a religious test. Merely asking a nominee whether her beliefs might stop her from fulfilling her constitutional duties is a relevant question.

For many liberals, though, the problem is that the beliefs of many Catholics and other adherents of various Christian theologies — or, for that matter, Jewish ones, as well — are increasingly undermining progressive ideals, not constitutional ones.

As Beto O'Rourke might ask, do the principles of the Constitution “still work”? When it comes to religious freedom, they most certainly do not. It’s progressive dogma that led a Harvard-educated Washington Post editor to incredulously ask how traditional Christian schools can even “happen” in contemporary American society. She was questioning not merely whether second lady Karen Pence is right or wrong to teach at a Christian school — after all, Americans are free to be critical of people’s faith — but how a school that adheres to the teachings of a church that counter progressive dogma can exist at all.

This is the same progressive moral dogma that justifies yearslong attacks on the livelihood of Christian bakers and florists. It’s the same dogma that justifies coercing nuns to pay for the rite of birth control. If one doesn’t adhere to these commandments, the state, the most powerful institution in the world, will sue them into submission.

In this regard, liberals also like to claim that those who do allow traditional faith to inform their political views are somehow undermining a tenet of American life. (Well, as long as that traditional faith can’t be utilized for left-wing agenda items, such as immigration and socialized health care.) As it goes, some of us, even nonbelievers, prefer the teachings of Jesus to those of Marx — which, in the non-celestial world, means free will over coercion. Whatever the case, our backgrounds and beliefs always color our opinions.

The Democratic presidential hopeful Tulsi Gabbard, an apostate on this issue, recently argued in an op-ed that if the Knights of Columbus are a disqualifying group, “then President John F. Kennedy, and the ‘liberal lion of the Senate’ Ted Kennedy would have been ‘unqualified’ for the same reasons.”

Well, not exactly the same reason. The anti-Catholicism of the past was predicated on an aversion to new immigrants, conspiracies about the pope, and a general long-standing theological distrust among religious denominations. In the political arena today, only the latter of those reasons is in play, and the denomination isn’t Protestant. The “liberal lion of the Senate” wouldn’t be disqualified by today’s standards, because in public life, at least, he was a doctrinal liberal.

“There are many people on the left who act like every political fight is going to bring about heaven or hell on earth — and so there are a lot of folks for whom politics is a religion,” Sasse said after his resolution passed. Progressives are the most zealous moralists. And these lines of questioning from Democrats, increasingly prevalent in political discourse, are an attempt to create the impression that faithful Christians, whose beliefs are at odds with newly sanctified cultural mores, are incapable of doing their jobs.

Sasse is right. Political bellum sacrum is here. We’re just not looking at the right people.

SOURCE






British Twitter user is investigated by police for posting a poem on social media site suggesting transgender women are still men

A Twitter user is planning to complain to the Home Secretary after police investigated him for retweeting a poem which suggested transgender women are still men.

Harry Miller is furious at his ‘Orwellian’ treatment by an officer who rang to check his ‘thinking’ after he had ‘liked’ a limerick which includes the lines: ‘You’re a man. Your breasts are made of silicone... And we can tell the difference... Your hormones are synthetic.’

In all, the company director – a former policeman – had posted about 30 tweets on transgender issues when he was called by a police officer, who introduced himself as ‘representing the LGBTQ community’ after receiving a complaint.

According to Mr Miller, 53, of Nettleton in Lincolnshire, the complainant was an unknown member of the public who had found him via his plant management company and decided ‘if I employed trans people at all, it was not a safe space for them’.

The officer, PC Mansoor Gul of Humberside Police, told Mr Miller that he had 30 tweets by him. When asked if any contained ‘criminal material’, the policeman read the poem, prompting Mr Miller to say afterwards with some disbelief: ‘A cop read me a limerick over the phone.’

Mr Miller said: ‘I said, I didn’t write that. He said, “Ah, but you liked it and promoted it.” I asked why he was wasting his time on a non crime. ‘He said, “It’s not a crime, but it will be recorded as a hate incident.” ’

He added: ‘The cop told me that he needed to speak with me because, even though I’d committed no crime whatsoever, he needed (and I quote) “to check my thinking!” Seriously. Honestly.

‘Finally, he lectured me. Said, “Sometimes, a woman’s brain grows a man’s body in the womb and that is what transgender is”.’

Father-of-four Mr Miller told The Mail on Sunday: ‘1984 is supposed to be a book, not a police operating manual.’  He added: ‘To be told that the police needed to check my thinking was a bit much.’

Mr Miller insists that he has ‘nothing against transgender people’ but is concerned about the damaging potential impact for the safety of women from proposals to allow any man who chooses to identify as female.

He plans to write to the Chief Constable of Humberside, the Home Secretary and the Police Commissioner for Humberside to complain and ask the force ‘to sort out its borders as to what constitutes police work’.

Mr Gul told The Daily Telegraph: ‘Although none of the tweets were criminal, I said to Mr Miller that the limerick is the kind of thing that upsets the transgender community. I warned him that if it escalates, we will take further action.’

A Humberside police spokesman said all reports of hate incidents are taken seriously and the force would always ‘take appropriate action’.

SOURCE






Australian hotel sparks controversy after BANNING patrons from wearing anything bearing the national flag on Australia Day

I would celebrate if someone fire-bombed these self-righteous Leftist pricks

A pub barred its patrons from wearing any attire bearing the Australian flag on Australia Day.

The Newtown Hotel, in Sydney's inner-west, left some scratching their heads on Saturday when a sign out front informed customers they'd be turned away if the flag was displayed. 'Newtown Hotel respectfully declines to be part of the 26th of January as the land was not ceded,' the sign reads.

'Today there is a dress code and that involves no Australian flag attire and accessories.'

Some punters online were less than thrilled with the decision, saying it was 'un-Australian' to ban the flag. 'Can't wear the Australian flag in Australia? Ridiculous,' one wrote.

'But [it] will have a colonial style building on Aboriginal ground profiting money selling alcohol?' another asked.

Adversely, many were in favour for the move, sharing messages of support with red, yellow and black heart emojis, representing the colours of the Aboriginal flag. 'Big UPS (sic) to these guys!!' one person wrote with the hashtag 'always was, always will be'.  'That's awesome,' wrote another.

The stance is the latest in a series of political statements the Newtown Hotel has made in the past couple of years. Most recently, they decided against broadcasting last year's Melbourne Cup as a sign of solidarity against the horse racing industry.

Management at the Newtown Hotel declined to comment.

SOURCE 

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

***************************







28 January 2019

Gender activists want to BAN beloved 1982 British children's book Dear Zoo for being 'SEXIST' because all the animals are male

Gender activists are campaigning to ban children's lift-the-flap book Dear Zoo - because all the animals are male.

Rod Campbell's 1982 book tells the story of a young boy who writes to a zoo to ask them to send him a pet.

He then receives a series of animals including a snake, a monkey and a 'too tall' giraffe before being given a 'perfect' puppy.

But campaign group Let Toys Be Toys have now claimed the story is 'biased' - because all the animals involved are male, the Sun reported.

Jess Day, of the campaign, said: 'All the animals are male. It’s biased. Parents must demand better.'

Others have claimed the book needs a 'modern-day re-write' or to be taken off shelves entirely.

But some, including father-of-two Reuben Williams, don't see a problem with the picture book - which has sold some eight million copies worldwide. He said: 'It's a classic and a best-seller for a reason. 'There's no issue unless you make one.'

The Dear Zoo and Friends website describes the story, designed for three to five year olds, as 'a must have for every child's bookshelf'.

It says: 'Young children will love lifting the flaps to discover the animals the zoo has sent - a monkey, a lion and even an elephant! 'But will they ever manage to send the perfect pet?'

The popular story has inspired a series of spin-off tales and gifts, including pocket editions and a Dear Zoo live show.

SOURCE






Ben Shapiro Warns: ‘We Should Take It Seriously When the Left Says That They Don’t Like Religion’

On his daily Facebook Live and YouTube video podcast “The  Ben Shapiro Show” Thursday, host and Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Wire Ben Shapiro warned that “we should take it seriously when the left says that they don’t like religion,” suggesting that the left is using current cultural norms and the law to target Christianity and Judaism in favor of a collective, secular ethic.

“And we should take it seriously when the left says that they don’t like religion,” warned Ben Shapiro. “Because they mean it – they mean it.”

Ben Shapiro’s remarks stem from recent attacks from the left against Karen Pence for her religious views and from a recent Washington Post piece that suggests that “Western Civilization” is a racist term titled “Steve King says he was just defending ‘Western Civilization.’ That’s racist, too.”

Below is a transcript of Ben Shapiro’s comments from his show Thursday:

“And we should take it seriously when the left says that they don’t like religion.  Because they mean it – they mean it.

“By the way, they don’t like Western Civilization either, the term “Western Civilization.” There’s an actual op-ed in The Washington Post today by David Perry and Matthew Gabriele suggesting that the term “Western Civilization” is itself racist. So, they say that because Steve King once used the term “Western Civilization”, “Western Civilization” –  like, the term – is racist, which means that we have to ban the term “Western Civilization” or at least pretend that Western Civilization no longer holds.

“The truth is that a lot of the objections to Christianity and Judeo-Christian values and Western Civilization are built on a Marxist premise that America and Western Civilized countries are inherently racist, sexist, bigoted, homophobic and must be torn out by the roots.

“So, Christianity has to go because it’s bigoted. Even though Christianity, by the way— The Christian world is the basis for all the rights and freedoms that you enjoy today. I don’t care whether you are secular. I don’t care whether you are religious. We live in a world defined by the Judeo-Christian ethic. That’s what made the west different from every other place on planet earth and to pretend that that ethic was completely thrown out with the Enlightenment and what the Enlightenment was about was saying, ‘Churches are wrong. We’re just not going to do church anymore.” That is to ignore the fact that virtually every value that we hold dear is rooted in Judeo-Christian tradition.

“The most important sentence ever written in the history of humanity is that man is made in God’s image. It is the beginning and end point of virtually all moral arguments. That is an argument that is made by the Judeo-Christian religion. The argument for personal liberty, that you have inherent rights, the argument that virtue matters so that we can have freedom, all of this, arises in Western Civilization defined by these values.

“So, if you wanted to do away with those values, if you wanted the collective to be more important than the individual, the best way to do it would be to attack Christianity and Judaism at their roots, would be to attack religion and tear those away.

“And again, the ironic part of this is that this is the least threatening time for theocracy in world history, at least from the Judeo-Christian side. And we’re being treated as though Karen Pence is the true threat to liberty – Karen Pence – not the Democrats who are attempting to stop judges from being appointed to the bench based on their membership in the Knights of Columbus.”

SOURCE






Facebook doesn't really believe in free speech. What they believe in (and actively practice) is censorship

It’s a new year, but Americans are fighting a battle as old as the nation itself. It’s the battle to preserve our free speech and for the first time we’re losing — badly.

The new front lines of this fight are on social media — Facebook, Twitter, Google, Instagram and others.

2.5 billion people use at least one of Facebook’s apps, making it probably the most important social media platform. Unfortunately, its employees, from the CEO on down, don’t really believe in free speech. They believe in and actively practice censorship on a scale almost unimaginable a few years ago.

Facebook’s embattled founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and its Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg seem determined to make the situation worse. After declaring to Congress their commitment to neutrality, they made end-of-year pronouncements that both promised more censorship, and appeased the far left by vowing to involve them with “new products, features and policies.”

Facebook is now openly antagonistic toward the right. Posts aren’t just blocked by humans who decide what they do or don’t like; they are blocked by computer programs designed by humans to ensure liberal sensibilities are not offended. The New York Times says the company is monitoring “billions of posts per day in over 100 languages.” That makes what Facebook is doing almost impossible to track, until it’s too late.

The Times described a global network with more than 15,000 employees assessing content based on rulebooks more than 1,400 pages long. The rules secretly designate groups as hate organizations and are so specific they even ban certain emoji use. Hate speech mandates alone run “200 jargon-filled, head-spinning pages,” wrote The Times.

The result is chaos. There’s no consistency in what Facebook bans or doesn’t ban — except that conservatives suffer. Pro-life, pro-gun and pro-Trump content all run afoul of Facebook’s eager hate speech censors. Just days before the annual March for Life, Facebook blocked advertising for the new pro-life movie "Roe v. Wade."

Around the Fourth of July, Facebook censored a post for “hate speech.” It was the text of the Declaration of Independence.

Conservatives like Samaritan’s Purse head Franklin Graham have been targeted, as well. Graham was suspended recently for a comment he made two years ago. Facebook later apologized.

This is commonplace for conservatives. The company bans, blocks or suspends and then later apologizes … sometimes.

The radical left has no such worries. Smash Racism DC, the Antifa group that targeted Fox host Tucker Carlson’s home and threatened his wife, is still on the site. So is Splinternews, which posted the personal cell phone number of Trump senior adviser Stephen Miller. Even reprehensible anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan has a Facebook page with more than 1.1 million followers.

Facebook is escalating the problem. In November, Zuckerberg announced a new “Blueprint for Content Governance.” He wrote like he believes in free speech, saying, “The world is better…when traditional gatekeepers like governments and media companies don't control what ideas can be expressed.”

But Facebook does.

Two paragraphs later he asked, “What should be the limits to what people can express?” Then he said the site was instituting more content controls that would limit what you see “even if it doesn't actually violate our standards.” That's called shadow banning content.

Sandberg followed with an endorsement of the liberal “civil rights audit” of Facebook that included an ACLU executive and 90 left-wing groups. She called it one of her “top priorities for 2019.” That audit revealed Facebook had worked so closely with the left that it allowed “several civil rights organizations engaged in the civil rights audit to visit [the company’s] election war room.”

The report Sandberg endorsed commits Facebook to work with these left-wing groups on “content moderation,” elections, and the Orwellian-sounding idea of creating a “civil rights accountability infrastructure.”

It also expressed the need for “greater employee diversity.” When liberals say “diversity,” they mean hiring more liberals from approved special interest groups.

Facebook also engaged the law firm Covington & Burling under former Republican Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona to audit how Facebook treats conservatives. In theory, that report will get equal attention. But in practice, it won’t. It will detail the complaints conservatives have, and Facebook will throw it away. How can it do otherwise? Sandberg has publicly committed to supporting radical left-wing groups — against conservatives.

The company has committed a great deal to the left, including “addressing censorship and harmful and potentially discriminating content on the platform.” That is a direct threat against the conservative movement.

The Media Research Center, along with more than 40 other organizations and tens of millions of supporters in our Free Speech Alliance, has called for just the opposite. We put out four demands that should be endorsed by anyone truly committed to having “a platform for all ideas,” as Zuckerberg stated: 1. more transparency 2. more clarity on hate speech rules 3. an equal seat at the table for conservatives 4. embracing the First Amendment as a model for allowable speech.

Those four demands are firmly in line with America’s foundational principles of free speech. Does Facebook believe in them? Conservatives are concluding that it doesn’t. According to a McLaughlin & Associates poll, one-third (32 percent) of self-described conservatives have left or are considering leaving Facebook.

I was in the room when Zuckerberg told a gathering of conservative leaders that if Facebook’s commitment to be the platform for all ideas was not maintained, its business plan would fail. He was right.

SOURCE






Feminists should learn from John Howard: it’s a matter of personal choice

Janet Albrechtsen uses some Australian examples to highlight the Fascist nature of feminism. John Howard was a long-running conservative Prime Minister of Australia who still speaks out occasionally:

How galling it must be for feminists that John Howard understands modern women better than many of them do. How exasperating for them that his feminism is far more liberating for, and respectful of, women than theirs.

A few years ago, during a National Press Club address, the former prime minister suggested that a 50-50 representation of men and women in politics is utopian planning. It is not grounded in reality, he observed. In the real world, women make choices. And many choose children over a demanding career in politics. This week, Kelly O’Dwyer proved Howard’s point. Her decision to resign for deeply personal family reasons is not a defeat for women. It is a celebration of women’s choices.

The usual band of women went wild over Howard’s straightforward remark that many women choose not to go into politics for sensible reasons. It’s a killer on family life. It takes parents away from children. And many women choose not to go down that path.

How dare he suggest women might not want to aspire to a political career in numbers equal to men? What would he know? He’s plain wrong, they said back then.

And they keep saying it. Last month, in a puff piece for The Australian Women’s Weekly, former Liberal MP Julia Banks took aim at what she called “Howard-era” thinking about women and work. It’s entrenched, she insisted.

The warrior for “gender equality” who deserted the Liberal party took a swipe at Prime Minister Scott Morrison as a traditional man, a religious man whose mentor is Howard. Then she took aim at women who make different choices to hers, women who are stay-at-home mums.

“Now I don’t have an issue with stay-at-home mums,” she said. “But I do in the sense that I believe all women should be, if not at some period in their life, they should ­ensure their financial independence … and not to be dependent on anyone.”

If you think stay-at-home mums have made the wrong choice, it’s an easy leap to demand that women and men fill up parliament in equal numbers. But notice the glaring gaps in the claim by women such as Banks that a 50-50 representation in parliament is a matter of fairness?

The first, and fatal, flaw is that these faux feminists are not interested in women’s choices. Fuelled by arrogance and paternalism, they imagine that all women must choose as they do, that women will want to go in politics in equal numbers to men. Ergo, if women choose anything else, it must be a coerced choice made under the weight of structural biases, patriarchal demands.

When O’Dwyer announced her intention to leave politics at the next election, she spoke from the heart about missing special times with her children “and how many more I will miss” if she stayed. The cabinet minister said she was no longer willing to consistently miss seeing her children in the morning or at night. “They clearly want to spend more time with me too.”

Sadly, O’Dwyer felt the need to satisfy the band of feminist ideologues that ignore the beauty of women’s choices. You don’t need to choose between family and public life, she said.

But her actions spoke louder. Sacrifices are made in any career, more so in those that involve long hours away from family. After a decade in Canberra, O’Dwyer chose family over politics.

Her decision mirrors that of many women who have come or will come to the same conclusion, only sooner than she did. There is no right or wrong here, only a deeply personal decision. What is wrong is an ideology that demeans the choices women make.

I made a similar decision when a very senior Liberal suggested a nice seat in federal politics for me. My children were on the cusp of teenage years, a time when I wanted to be around them more often than not. It’s when kids think they don’t need you that maybe they do. Scheduling quality time made no sense to me, so I chose quantity and that meant saying no to politics. Working from home didn’t guarantee a bump-free ride for them or for me. But my choice to work from home to raise children will always be, for me at least, life’s greatest privilege in all its messy and demanding, frustrating and rewarding glory.

Not every woman can stay at home with their children. Money and other matters can get in the way. But when that choice exists, it should be respected and celebrated, not dismissed as part of some kind of “entrenched” patriarchy. Maybe when we celebrate caring for children, more men will embrace it too.

Alas, women who wear a feminist label on their sleeve have a nasty knack for deriding the choices of other women. Union leader Sally McManus accused O’Dwyer of “throwing in the towel”. No empathy there for O’Dwyer’s very personal reasons for leaving politics. No celebration of a woman’s desire to spend more time with her children. What a cold world McManus inhabits.

Banks has planted her red flag with the same band of ideologues. She deserves credit for winning a seat, but in the end, she was a poor fit for politics. Her feminism is not an empowering one, sitting at odds with a liberalism based on respecting individual freedom over the ­arrogance of central planners like her.

Along with Labor’s Emma Husar, Banks’s feminism is framed by gender tantrums. When women stop blaming men for their own misfortune, mistakes and misdeeds, perhaps feminism will come of age.

The siren call for 50 per cent female representation in parliament is central planning nonsense. The reality of women’s preferences suggests that a 30 per cent target is closer to the mark. Anything more exposes the second killer flaw in the “fairness” argument — it relies on discrimination in favour of women.

It is no coincidence that those who push hardest for a 50 per cent target or quota that does not reflect the full gamut of women’s choices are usually those who most need the additional 20 per cent to make it in politics.

It’s even worse in the corporate world, where the incompetence issue is more pronounced. That’s not to say there are no incompetent men in business and politics. Plenty of men need to be moved on. But to set up a system that demands promotion for those in the red zone of incompetence is a sign of how gender ideology is making the political arena, and business, dumber for a political cause.

The “gender equality” ideologues understand the golden skirts phenomenon only too well. In business, generous targets and quotas that promote the incompetent drive up the economic value of the scarce number of competent women. The incompetent love quotas because they’re in with a chance; the competent love them too because it inflates their economic value. They are swamped with offers. In politics, the neat pay-off is not so much about more money, but greater power.

Howard’s understanding of women isn’t rocket science. His feminism is not stubborn ideology. It is based on celebrating the beauty of women’s choices, something that should be the core of modern feminism.

SOURCE 

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

***************************





27 January 2019

In Russia, men are still allowed to be men

A lot of conservatives have some admiration for the way political correctness has not got very far in Russia and I am one of them.  Under furious Leftist/Feminist influence there is these days in the Western world great pressure on masculinity.  Anything masculine is heavily criticized.  Huge attempts are being made to feminize Western men.  That has got just about nowhere in Russia.  Russian men are still admired for being men and most Russian women are among the admirers.

It is difficult to address that statistically. One of the attempts to produce statistical proof that men are a bad lot was spectacularly incompetent statistically.  See here.  So the whole question has so far not risen much above opinion and assertion.  So I think I too can approach the question anecdotally only.

But I think one very powerful anecdote concerns Russian baritone Dmitry Hvorostovsky.  Both in Russia and elsewhere he is a much admired singer.  And in opera it is not just the singing that matters.  The acting too is a big deal.  And Hvorostovsky shines there too.  He is a most masculine man in a way that you cannot just adopt or imitate.  He just IS a very masculine man.  And for the male parts in opera that goes down very well.

I will not burden readers with opera but Hvorostovsky also sings popular and traditional Russian songs.  And probably the best known Russian song in the West is "Moscow Nights".  So I want readers to watch him singing that.  You will see an unashamedly masculine man in spontaneous action.

Below is a video of the famous performance in Red Square with Netrebko and Hvorostovsky singing.  Anna Netrebko is a supreme Russian soprano. Hvorostovsky presents his songs in a very strong, confident and dignified way while Netrebko is a rather shy person who is easily embarrassed.

The beginning of the performance is very Russian, with Hvorostovsky dragging a submissive Netrebko onto the stage but then pledging undying love to her. In her reactions you will see how easily embarrassed she is but will also see how much she enjoys Hvorostovsky and his declarations. Most Russian ladies would envy her as Hvorostovsky is a very attractive man. Feminists will hate the whole thing.



You see in this performance as in others that the ladies who sing duets with Hvorostovsky swoop in for a big cuddle with him afterwards. Real women like real men.

Another Russian baritone who exudes Russian manliness is Leonid Kharitonov.  Below he is singing "Volga Boatman" with the Red Army Choir.  The song is actually a type of shanty.  It is not the song of sailors, however.  It is a song of men on a towpath dragging boats along the Volga, presumably upstream. It is a song of endurance.  As such the words are simple to the point of meaninglessness but the tune is compelling.  And when you see Kharitonov  -- a most manly looking man -- you get a feeling for Russian power.

Russians are enduring. They have to be -- with both a demanding climate and a demanding government.  I admire them and have a feeling for what life must be like in Russia. When you listen to Kharitinov, however, you begin to understand the war on the Eastern front. The Germans were military specialists and killed 4 Russians for every one of theirs that fell.  But the Russians just did not give in -- so indomitability triumphed over military brilliance.



So Russia reminds us that manliness is not "toxic" but something quite wonderful.

Note:  After the video of Hvorostovsy above, Youtube segues for me into another video featuring Hvorostovky -- singing the Toreador song from "Carmen".  That too is a magnificent and very manly performance.  You may note at the beginning of the video the way Hvorostovsky strides onto the stage, clearly the master of his universe.






Britain's most disgraceful bureaucracy

The SFO are extraordinarily arrogant and keep getting it wrong. Because they have the deep pockets of the taxpayer behind them, they think that they can do no wrong. They were nearly wound up when they cost the taxpayer a bomb over their failed prosecution of the Tchenguiz brothers.  They are full of themselves, with no good reason.  They should have learned from the Tchenguiz affair that the have to be meticulous about making a case but instead they bluffed -- and lost again. 

The former UK finance director of Tesco has been acquitted of a fraud in the latest embarrassing blow for the Serious Fraud Office and Britain’s largest supermarket group.

Carl Rogberg, 52, was formally found not guilty this morning at Southwark crown court after the SFO said that it had no evidence to present against him. It comes nearly a year after the first trial was abandoned when Mr Rogberg had a heart attack and just over a month after a second trial, involving two other former Tesco employees, collapsed when a judge ruled that the SFO had no case.

SOURCE






Another attack on monuments -- this time in Britain

Scotland Yard has launched an investigation after five memorials and statues were attacked by vandals in what appears to be a coordinated campaign.

The first incident, which caused widespread public anger, occurred on Sunday night when white paint was splattered over the memorial to Bomber Command in London’s Green Park.

But it later emerged that three other war memorials and plaque a murdered police officer had also been targeted at around the same time.

The targets included the Allies Statue statue of Second World War prime minister Sir Winston Churchill and his US counterpart Franklin D Roosevelt in New Bond Street, the Canada Memorial in Green Park, and the Royal Marines Graspan Memorial on The Mall.

The memorial to Yvonne Fletcher, the police officer who was murdered by a gunman during the 1984 Libyan Embassy siege, in St James's Square, was also attacked.

In each case white paint was splashed over the statues and police have said they believe all the incidents are linked.

No arrests have been made and police have said it is not clear what the motive behind the attacks is.

Detective Inspector Dave Watkinson said: "These crimes have understandably caused anger and offence and we are working hard to identify and apprehend those responsible. "Our enquiries are moving at pace and I urge anyone who saw anything suspicious at the locations concerned to contact us."

The Bomber Command memorial was erected to honour the sacrifice of the 55,000 members of aircrew from Britain, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Poland and other countries of the Commonwealth as well as civilians of all nations killed in raids.

It was unveiled by the Queen in 2012 after a public appeal for funds raised more than £5 million.

The RAF Benevolent Fund said it was the fourth time in six years that the Bomber Command Memorial had been vandalised.

It was first targeted in 2013 when a man daubed the word "Islam" on it shortly after the killing of Fusilier Lee Rigby outside Woolwich Barracks.

A week later, a second man wrote "Lee Rigby's killers should hang", "EDL" and "F*** the police" on the memorial. He was jailed for 12 weeks.

Britain's last surviving Dambuster George "Johnny" Johnson, 97, slammed the latest incident. He said: "What a disgrace, such mindless vandalism. "How disrespectful to the nearly 58,000 people who gave their lives so that these thugs have the freedom to carry out such acts? I hope they are caught soon, and suitably punished.”

The memorial to Pc Flecther, who was just 25-years-old when she was gunned down, stands opposite the Libyan Embassy where she had been helping to police a protest.

Her murder resulted in an 10-day siege of the embassy and eventually saw the UK sever diplomatic ties with the regime.  Nobody has ever been charged over the killing of Pc Fletcher.

Responding to the news that her memorial had been targeted, Ken Marsh, the Chairman of the  Metropolitan Police Federation, said: "This is a disgusting and despicable act by vile individuals. We will find those responsible.”

SOURCE






Planned Parenthood Suffers Big Loss in Federal Appeals Court

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals lifted an injunction forbidding Texas from stripping Planned Parenthood of Medicaid funds Thursday, while stridently criticizing the abortion-provider for its rhetoric and medical practices.

“Planned Parenthood’s reprehensible conduct, captured in undercover videos, proves that it is not a ‘qualified’ provider under the Medicaid Act, so we are confident we will ultimately prevail,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement after Thursday’s ruling.

The case arose after a pro-life group called the Center for Medical Progress released videos purporting to show Planned Parenthood violating medical and ethical standards codified in federal law and state regulations. Texas terminated its Medicaid provider agreement with Planned Parenthood shortly thereafter, citing infractions documented in the videos.

In turn, Planned Parenthood asked a federal court to restore its Medicaid funding. Thursday’s ruling — which related to a jurisdictional issue in that case — is especially striking for its numerous rebukes of Planned Parenthood. Judge Edith Jones, a Ronald Reagan appointee, delivered the opinion.

Perhaps the most noteworthy of the decision’s reprimands is a graphic depiction of post-abortion fetal remains taken from a CMP video on the fourth page of the opinion. A small arm is visible in the picture. Texas cited the manner in which Planned Parenthood disposes of fetal remains as one reason for terminating their Medicaid eligibility.

In another instance, the decision all but accuses Planned Parenthood of breaking federal law banning partial birth abortions. The ruling highlights a CMP video in which an administrator called Dr. Tram Nguyen said doctors at one facility could evacuate an intact fetus — thereby breaking federal law — provided they sign a form that they did not “intend” to do so. Such procedures allow researchers to recover organs like the thymus or the liver.

Later in the opinion, the panel chides Planned Parenthood for failing to engage with Nguyen’s comments in court filings.

“The plaintiffs’ briefing with regard to the substance of the discussions contained in the videos is curiously silent,” the decision reads.

Planned Parenthood has denied that they intentionally alter abortion procedures for such purposes.

The panel also dismissed Planned Parenthood’s claim that the CMP videos were “deceptively edited,” a soundbite that redounded across the press after the tapes first appeared.

“The record reflects that (the Texas Office of Inspector General) had submitted a report from a forensic firm concluding that the video was authentic and not deceptively edited,” a footnote in the decision reads. “And (Planned Parenthood) did not identify any particular omission or addition in the video footage.”

Finally, the panel accused the judiciary of politicking on abortion cases. Ordinarily, providers like Planned Parenthood must challenge Medicaid termination decisions in an administrative forum and state court before seeking a federal court’s intervention. By allowing Planned Parenthood to skip directly to federal court — as the trial court did here — the 5th Circuit said that judges are engaging in ideological favoritism.

“Had (Texas) terminated the Medicaid provider agreements of any other type of health care provider, the incongruity of allowing that provider to use patient litigation proxies to avoid administrative review and (reach) federal court would be obvious and unacceptable,” the ruling reads.

The decision comes as pro-life activists gather in Washington in advance of Friday’s March for Life.

The question before the 5th Circuit did not relate to abortion directly: After Texas disqualified Planned Parenthood from Medicaid eligibility, the abortion-provider sued, claiming the federal Medicaid statute allowed them to do so. A federal district judge agreed, allowed the lawsuit to proceed. The 5th Circuit had to decide whether that decision was correct.

The federal appeals courts are divided over the answer to that question. Though the Supreme Court generally intervenes when the circuits disagree over the same question of law, the justices denied review in a related controversy from Kansas in December 2018, drawing a vigorous dissent from Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch, which accused the Court of playing politics.

In that instance, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh joined with the Court’s liberal bloc, effectively preserving a pro-Planned Parenthood decision in the lower court.

The 5th Circuit’s Thursday decision concluded that they are bound by precedent to find that Planned Parenthood can proceed with its lawsuit in federal court under the Medicaid statute, though Jones wrote a concurrence to her own majority opinion urging the full 5th Circuit to revisit that question.

However, the 5th Circuit gave Texas a partial victory, finding that the trial court assessed Planned Parenthood’s request for an injunction under the wrong standard. The panel lifted the injunction and ordered the lower court judge to reconsider Planned Parenthood’s request under a different standard which is more accommodating of Texas.

As such, the state has a much better chance of prevailing when the matter returns to the trial court for further proceedings.

Texas awards approximately $3.4 million to Planned Parenthood affiliates through Medicaid annually. The decision notes this is a “smidgen” of the revenue Planned Parenthood’s Texas affiliates generate each year, which runs over $57 million.

SOURCE






Australia: Far-left activists have put up contemptuous signs at historic Cook’s Cottage in Vic

I joined in a traditional Australia Day family BBQ with no shame and no thoughts about any minority.  Why should I do otherwise?  In Matthew 8:22 Jesus said, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead”, meaning that there are more important things to do than worrying about those who cannot be helped and who are therefore as good as dead. 

I did raise a champagne toast to the First Fleet, however, as two of my ancestors came out to Australia as convicts on such ships.  Why should my culture and history be dishonoured in order to promote Aboriginal beliefs?  It is my ancestors and their ilk who made Australia the advanced and peaceful civilization that it is today



Far-left activists have put up signs reading “Rest in Piss Australia Day” and “Abolish Australia Day” at the historic Cooks’ Cottage in inner east Melbourne.

The cottage was built in 1775 by Captain James Cook’s father and was brought to Fitzroy Garden’s in 1934. Cooks’ the oldest building in Australia.

Activist group Whistleblowers, Activists and Citizens Alliance (WACA) put the signs up this morning at 9am when the landmark opened.

WACA spokeswoman Charlotte Lynch said the actions were made in support of demands of Aboriginal solidarity at tomorrow’s Invasion Day rally.

“We are making those demands in solidarity with Aboriginal people who are protesting tomorrow against the colonial narrative and the narrative of White Australia.” she said.

Ms Lynch said the group did not consult with but undertook their actions in response to indigenous activist group Warriors of Aboriginal Resistance’s (WAR) call for seven days of resistance.

“Although we are a group of non-indigenous people we did that to acknowledge sovereignty to speak out against a narrative that is destructive and racist.” she said.

The signs read “Eviction notice: Unpaid rent 231 years”, “Abolish Australia” and “Rest in Peace Australia Day”.

The group put up the same signs last year.

SOURCE 

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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25 January, 2018

American Psychological Association Has Made Choosing a Therapist Easy
    
The American Psychological Association has, in its words, issued “its first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys.” These guidelines “draw on more than 40 years of research showing that traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage.”

Three observations:

1) The last thing American males need today is less masculinity.

If you need proof, ask women who are looking for a husband whether the men they date exhibit too much masculinity, too little masculinity or just the right amount. I have talked to hundreds of women on my radio show (every week I have a “Male/Female Hour”), at speeches and in private who are dating to find a spouse. Not one has said men today are too masculine. Virtually all of them have said men today lack masculinity.

And why wouldn’t men lack masculinity? A vast number of boys grow up either with no father or with a father they rarely see. Their lives are dominated by women — their mother, virtually all their teachers, probably their school principal and probably their therapist.

As if that were not bad enough, many of the single mothers of these American boys are angry at the man who never married them, or at the man who divorced them, or at men in general. In addition, these boys’ women teachers suppress their natural testosterone-driven male behaviors. And now their teachers increasingly tell them they may not even be a boy.

Of course, some men are boors — demanding sex on the first date, sending sex-filled messages, etc. But most men know boorishness is not masculinity. Such behaviors emanate not from masculinity but from poor upbringing and/or the sexual revolution, which taught men and women that the sex drives of men and women are the same.

But as psychoanalyst Erica Komisar wrote in the Wall Street Journal last week, it is “a recipe for mental illness” to tell boys that “aggression, competitiveness and protectiveness is a sign of sickness.”

2) This is another example of the most important rule of contemporary life: The left ruins everything it touches.

The left has ruined the arts; the universities; high schools; the nuclear family; mainstream Protestantism, Catholicism and Judaism; the Boy Scouts; and journalism. And it is now doing the same to the sciences: Universities are increasingly choosing science faculty based on gender and race rather than on scientific expertise.

Psychology and psychiatry have long been homes to left-wing fools (recall the 1964 example of 1,189 psychiatrists declaring then-presidential candidate Sen. Barry Goldwater “psychologically unfit”). But the APA statement will do even more harm.

The American Psychological Association goes beyond defining “traditional masculinity” as “on the whole, harmful.” It urges therapists to help men “identify how they have been harmed by discrimination against those who are gender nonconforming.” That’s right. Your son’s psychotherapist will explain to him how it is entirely normal for a boy his age (beginning in kindergarten) to wear a dress, and that regarding an 8-year-old boy in a dress as not quite healthy is what is not quite healthy. In addition, the APA hopes this therapist will reassure your son that he, too, may well choose to be a girl.

In the words of Komisar, this is “an ideological claim transformed into a clinical treatment recommendation.” That “ideological claim” is, of course, leftism.

3) The APA statement makes choosing a psychotherapist simple.

The hardest part of starting psychotherapy is figuring out how to choose a psychotherapist. If you choose the wrong one, you will not only be wasting a great deal of time and money; you will not be helped, and you might well be harmed.

So, how does one go about choosing a psychotherapist? The APA just made the task much simpler: Just ask any therapist you are considering for yourself or someone else, “Do you agree with the American Psychological Association that ‘traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful’?”

If the therapist agrees, thank him or her for the time and leave. If the therapist starts giving a prolonged response, leave. Any therapist who cannot unequivocally condemn the APA statement is unworthy of your time and your money, let alone your psyche. Many will try to weasel out of directly agreeing (or disagreeing) with the statement. They will tell you that sometimes masculinity is a problem. But they are just being careful not to lose you as a potential client. Such a statement is meaningless: There is nothing that cannot be harmful at times. That includes femininity as much as masculinity, and it includes such normally good things as water (a lot of people drown, after all).

Without “traditional masculinity,” civilization is lost. Ask anyone you know who agrees with using the term “the greatest generation” to describe the generation that fought World War II whether the men of that generation would have fought, much less won, without “traditional masculinity.”

Do not trust therapists who will not condemn the APA statement. They are either a fool or a coward. They may well be very kind and sincere. But that means nothing. You or your child will not be helped by kindness and sincerity. You or your child will only be helped by wisdom.

SOURCE






What is a man? A response to Gillette



A short film - Dedicated to all those who sacrifice everything to make the world safer and better for all of us.






Donald Trump’s ban on transgender people serving in the US military can now go ahead

The Supreme Court is allowing the Trump administration to go ahead with its plan to restrict military service by transgender people while court challenges continue.

The high court on Tuesday reversed lower-court orders preventing the Pentagon from implementing its plans. But the high court for now declined to take up cases about the plan.

According to the New York Post, the Supreme Court broke along ideological lines in a 5-4 decision that removed injunctions imposed by lower courts that had previously blocked the ban.

The cases will continue to move through lower courts. Military policy had barred service by transgender people until President Barack Obama’s administration began allowing transgender people already in the military to serve openly and set a date when transgender people would be allowed to enlist.

The five conservative justices — Chief Justice John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Donald Trump appointees Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh — moved to lift the injunctions which would let the ban proceed.

The court’s progressive wing — Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Stephen Breyer — voted to keep the injunctions in place.

The court decided not to take up the plan itself, as the Trump administration had wanted, opting instead to allow lower courts to hear the legal battle.

Mr Trump first unveiled the change in policy in a tweet in July 2017 because he said transgender service members pose a threat to national security, declaring the US government “will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”

It reversed President Obama’s 2016 policy that allowed transgender men and women already serving in the military to do so openly.

Advocacy groups and lawyers for active-duty transgender military personnel sued to stop the policy from taking effect and courts imposed nationwide injunctions.

The Trump administration’s policy, which was brought into effect by former Defence Secretary James Mattis, bars transgender people from being in the military unless they serve “in their biological sex” and do not attempt to seek surgery for a gender transition.

SOURCE






Lawyer for Covington Catholic HS Families Threatens Lawsuits Against Media Unless They Retract False Stories

Thanks to the sloppy, one-sided reporting of the malicious, agenda-driven media, a group of Catholic high school teenagers and their families have become the subjects of threats and harassment from a hateful online outrage mob. Their only sins? Being white, Catholic, and supporters of the president.

The full story has emerged in the wake of the fake news blitzkrieg over the weekend, and the media outlets that spread defamatory smears against the kids are now being warned to correct and retract their stories or face a lawsuit. Contrary to the media's malicious narrative, the kids were not racist rednecks mobbing a Native American elder with hateful slurs. It was quite the opposite.

Los Angeles-based trial lawyer Robert Barnes offered to represent the Covington families for free should they decide to sue the New York Times.

He said that "anyone who doesn't correct and retract" their false smears would be subject to a lawsuit and that updated stories merely indicating "a more complex picture has emerged" would not necessarily be enough.

When asked if such stories would count as a retraction, he replied that it "depends."

According to his website, Barnes has a history of taking on the causes of underdogs: "Fighting for individuals against unethical law firms, corrupt banks, and rogue government agents, Barnes continues the family tradition his great-grandfathers started centuries ago, fighting for the freedoms that founded America."

Video evidence and statements from multiple witnesses indicate that the boys were targeted by two groups of protesters who hurled hateful, racial, homophobic slurs at them while they waited on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial for their bus after participating in the March for Life.

How hard would it have been for the media to find the full video, which was already online, to verify Phillips' assertions before running with them? Nothing Phillips was alleging could be corroborated in the viral video clip of Phillips and the smiling teenager, but they reported his claims as gospel anyway.

The media also reported that the longtime lefty agitator is a Vietnam veteran who served in the U.S. Marine Corps as a "recon ranger" based on his say-so, without bothering to verify whether the claim was true.

The Center for Security Studies had some questions about that:  This is not a valid name for any Marine specialty or unit and Phillips age of 64 calls into question how he could have completed training and served in Vietnam prior to the US withdrawal.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

***************************






23 January, 2018

The attack on Southern monuments

It has become VERY extensive. I think the time will come when resentful conservatives will begin to attack statuary and monuments beloved of the Left.  It would only be fair

Woodfin, the 37-year-old mayor of Birmingham, Ala., made an unlikely sales pitch the other day after glancing toward some black-and-white photos of his city’s segregated past.

A 52-foot-tall Confederate monument, a sandstone obelisk erected in 1905 and within sight of City Hall, is available, he said. For free.

“Any Confederate museum that wants this thing can have it,” Mr. Woodfin said in an interview at City Hall. “I’ll give it to them right now. Hell, I’m even willing to give them whatever they need to get it to them.”

But Mr. Woodfin, and the State of Alabama, know such a transfer would not be without political and legal consequences.

Almost 154 years after the end of the Civil War, the country is still quarreling — in state capitols and courtrooms, on college campuses and around town squares — over how, or whether, to commemorate the side that lost.

Those stubborn debates bubbled up again this month in Winston-Salem and Chapel Hill, N.C., and in Birmingham, among the most progressive parts of a region that has struggled to reconcile its history with its modern ambitions.

“This is one of America’s most important conversations. In many ways, we have only begun to talk critically about the landscape that has existed in this country for a very long time that romanticizes the era of the slavery and the role of the Confederacy,” said Bryan Stevenson, the leading force behind the newly built National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Ala.

Critics of Confederate monuments have won dramatic victories that were almost inconceivable a decade ago: the lowering of the battle flag outside the South Carolina State House, the removals of four towering statues in New Orleans, the renaming of city streets in Atlanta and in Hollywood, Fla.

But some states have rushed to shield Confederate tributes from removal.

More than 1,700 “publicly sponsored symbols” of the Confederacy remain, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. A new protection proposal, brought by Mike Hill, a Republican state representative in Florida, is pending in the Legislature there.

And even as dozens of Confederate statues have been unearthed and hauled away from parks and other public grounds, many others are being quietly discovered. The list of Confederate symbols newly identified or counted now outnumbers the ones that have been removed, a S.P.L.C. study shows.

In Florida, Mr. Hill among the leaders of a rally in Pensacola against the proposed removal of a cross on public grounds in June 2017 when he made the decision: if elected to the state House of Representatives, he would work to strengthen memorial protections.

Two months later, after the mayor called for the removal of a 50-foot Confederate monument on Lee Square, Mr. Hill said his mission grew more urgent. So in his first act after his 2018 election victory, Mr. Hill filed a bill making it illegal to remove “remembrances” on public property erected on or after 1822 except for repairs — or relocation to an equally prominent place.

Mr. Hill, a third-generation veteran, said the bill was designed to protect the monuments, memorials and flags that honor soldiers and veterans — including those who fought in the Civil War.

As an African-American, Mr. Hill knows he is at odds with the traditional argument for removing Confederate symbols from public spaces, personally rejecting the idea they are hurtful.

“Our history is what makes us up as a people,” said Mr. Hill, who founded one of Florida’s Tea Party chapters. “We can learn from the ugly parts so that it can never happen again. Tearing down a monument does not create unity; it actually creates more division.”

In North Carolina, yet another chapter of the Confederate monuments battle is exploding, in a booming city and on a picturesque college campus 75 miles apart.

Last week, the chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ordered the removal of the remains of the toppled “Silent Sam” Confederate monument off the college grounds for community safety — and, announced her resignation.

Chancellor Carol L. Folt, who just months ago officially apologized of behalf of the university for the “profound injustices of slavery,” planned to retire in the spring after graduation.

Shocked by the surprise announcement, the U.N.C. System Board of Governors, pushed her leave up to the end of January. Ms. Folt had requested the removal of the statue’s base, which included plaques memorializing university students who fought for the Confederacy.

The final resting place for “Silent Sam,” whose status has been complicated by state law, remains unsettled, but officials hope to announce a plan by March. The bronze soldier, unveiled in 1913, was toppled by protesters last summer.

And in December, the city of Winston- Salem ordered the removal of a statue of a Confederate soldier in the city’s downtown to a nearby cemetery where 36 Confederate soldiers are buried. In a letter to the North Carolina Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the owners of the statue, the city attorney cast the move as in public safety issue based on recent vandalism and the potential for violent confrontations.

The city is considering legal action if the statue is not moved by Jan. 31. The United Daughters of the Confederacy has vowed to fight back, calling the city’s demand “heavy-handed” and “dishonorable” in a statement. The statue was erected in 1905 on the old courthouse grounds, property now privately owned.

The current landowner also wants the statue removed.

“I know there are strong issues on both sides of this issue, people who want it there because of history,’” Mayor Allen Joines said. “On the other hand, this monument represents oppression and the subjugation of a people and I know that’s hurtful.”

North Carolina’s struggle has not yet devolved into a legal battle, but Birmingham’s Confederate obelisk, shunned by the mayor, has. In 2017, Alabama enacted a law that forbade memorials to be “relocated, removed, altered, renamed or otherwise disturbed” if they had stood on public property for at least 40 years.

Then came the violence in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017, and Mr. Woodfin’s predecessor as mayor, William A. Bell Sr., ordered that the base of the towering Confederate monument be shrouded in plywood.

The state promptly sued to protect it, and asked that Birmingham be fined $25,000 a day.

Last Monday night, Judge Michael G. Graffeo, of the Circuit Court in Jefferson County, struck down the statute. Under the law, Judge Graffeo wrote, “the people of Birmingham cannot win.” “No matter how much they lobby city officials, the state has placed a thumb on the scale for a pro-Confederacy message, and the people, acting through their city, will never be able to dissociate themselves from that message entirely,” the judge wrote.

The judge’s order, which the state is expected to appeal, sparked a refreshed furor in Alabama over what should come of monuments.

The sponsor of the embattled legislation, Senator Gerald Allen, a Republican from Tuscaloosa County, said in a statement that the law was “meant to thoughtfully preserve the entire story of Alabama’s history for future generations.”

And he harshly criticized Judge Graffeo.

“Judges are not kings, and judicial activism is no substitute for the democratic process,” said Mr. Allen, who, in a 2016 interview with The New York Times, argued that it was “important that we tell the story of what has happened in this country because that’s what shaped and molded us as a nation.”

A spokesman for Attorney General Steven T. Marshall, whose office brought the case against Birmingham in August 2017, did not respond to a request for comment.

Mr. Woodfin, who defeated Mr. Bell within months of the Charlottesville attack and the Alabama lawsuit, is weary of a broader fight that he argued should have been settled long ago. A deepening legal battle with the state, he suggested, was unhelpful and disappointing.

“In my mind, this is the opposite of moving forward,” he said. “The statue was erected well post-Civil War, in a city that was founded after the Civil War. To me, it seemed like it was intentionally sending a signal to the public about revisionist history, and a message to what did exist, even if it was wrong.”

The monument, which was originally dedicated by a Birmingham area chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, is hardly the only challenge.

On Monday, state offices will be closed throughout Alabama. The government will be marking the birthday of the Rev.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. And Robert E. Lee.

SOURCE





Pelosi’s Equality Act Could Lead to More Parents Losing Custody of Kids Who Want ‘Gender Transition’

Americans have long understood that children are best cared for by their parents. The state should only intervene in the family when there is demonstrable evidence of abuse and neglect.

This has long been established in our laws. But now, transgender ideology is silencing doctors and challenging the way courts define parental abuse and neglect.

Last year in Ohio, a judge removed a biological girl from her parents’ custody after they declined to help her “transition” to male with testosterone supplements. The Cincinnati Children’s gender clinic recommended these treatments for gender dysphoria (the condition of being distressed with one’s biological sex).

When her parents wanted to treat her with counseling instead, Hamilton County Job and Family Services charged them with abuse and neglect, while transgender activists and pro-trans doctors compared their decision to denying treatment for asthma or even cancer patients.

That all happened without federal legislation.

But now, one of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s top legislative priorities, the Equality Act, could give the transgender community a vice grip over the medical profession. It could open the floodgates for lawsuits against doctors who don’t fall in line with transgender ideology.

Politicizing the medical treatment of gender dysphoria could lead to more prosecutions against parents who refuse to aid in the sterilization of their children. As more doctors recommend that children take puberty blockers at age 11, cross-sex hormones at 16, and undergo “sex-reassignment” surgeries at 18, parents who resist could face charges of child abuse and lose custody of their children.

The tragedy in Ohio could be repeated in families across America.

Turning the Law Into a Sword Against Doctors

The transgender movement wants to dominate the field of medicine, and to do so it is threatening doctors and hospitals with penalties.

Some states have already passed laws similar to Pelosi’s Equality Act. In New Jersey and California, transgender activists have sued Catholic hospitals for “discrimination” on the basis of gender identity because they wouldn’t perform sex-change surgeries for patients with gender dysphoria.

These lawsuits may seem preposterous, but they were enabled by state anti-discrimination laws that treat sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes and health care facilities as public accommodations. The text of the Equality Act that was introduced in the 115th Congress does the same.

Pelosi’s bill would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the 1964 Civil Rights Act, making hospitals and doctors across America vulnerable to costly litigation if they don’t follow the medical recommendations of the transgender movement. It would turn anti-discrimination law—which was meant to protect disenfranchised minority groups—into a coercive sword to threaten doctors into submission to transgender ideology.

Does Transgender Ideology Make for Good Medicine?

Part of the reason some doctors resist transgender ideology is that it is incompatible with good medicine and would harm rather than help their patients.

The American Psychological Association’s manual of mental disorders classifies gender dysphoria as a mental illness. Research shows that 75 to 95 percent of children with gender dysphoria who go through puberty without any transgender treatments actually become comfortable with their bodies.

But the transgender movement ignores these statistics, aggressively pushing for gender-dysphoric children to be treated with non-FDA-approved uses of drugs, even though side effects can include loss of bone density, decline of cognitive ability, and infertility.

Dr. Michelle Cretella, executive director of the American College of Pediatricians, describes it as “institutionalized child abuse.”

Transgender activists have already tried to silence doctors who warned patients about these dangers. The Human Rights Campaign—a leading LGBT group—devotes an entire website to trying to discredit Dr. Paul McHugh, the former lead psychiatrist at Johns Hopkins University Hospital who put a stop to the hospital’s sex-reassignment surgeries. McHugh says the surgeries were “fundamentally cooperating with a mental illness.”

Trans Activists Are Putting Children and Doctors in the Driver’s Seat

Transgender activists and pro-trans physicians often seek to exclude parents from the process of medical decision-making. Cincinnati Children’s Hospital’s Transgender Health Clinic says parents may be excluded from interviews because they might make their children feel uncomfortable asking questions.

Remarkably, this clinic has deemed 100 percent of the patients seeking care to be “appropriate candidates for continued gender treatment.” Even the Ohio judge who terminated one couple’s parental rights expressed “concern” at this astoundingly high approval rate.

Transgender advocates dismiss these concerns by sounding an alarm that gender-dysphoric children will be at higher risk of suicide if they don’t receive hormone treatment.

But the evidence suggests transgender treatments can actually increase the likelihood of suicide. A study in Sweden on adults who underwent sex-reassignment surgeries showed they were 19 times more likely than the general population to commit suicide after undergoing operations. This is particularly noteworthy because in Sweden, cultural support for those who identify as transgender is very strong, so social stigma is less likely to account for the suicides.

We should be particularly cautious with experimental treatments on children because the long-term effects of transgender treatments have yet to be seen. Even the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid under the Obama administration pointed out that “mortality from this patient population did not become apparent until after 10 years.”

Endocrinologist Dr. Michael Laidlaw also warns that the long-term harms to kids may not show up until years later when as young adults, they start asking: “’How come I can’t have children at this point?’ Well, it’s because their fertility was destroyed by some combination of puberty blockers, wrong sex hormones, and surgery.”

And Dr. Stephen B. Levine, professor of psychiatry at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, asks the pertinent question: Are children really capable of comprehending the way that hormone treatments will alter their lives and render them unable to have their own children? There’s a reason we have informed consent laws—to protect people, like children, from being taken advantage of.

Expediting a Bad Trend

In this cultural and political climate, doctors and courts are more and more likely to seek to exclude parents from life-changing decisions about their children.

America has seen an explosion of “gender clinics” and diagnoses of “gender dysphoria” in just the past few years. In 2013, America had only three gender clinics. Today, there are more than 41. These clinics report 400 percent increases in children and teens identifying as trans.

The Equality Act would expedite this trend by giving the transgender movement a powerful legal weapon to drive medical consensus that could undermine the rights of parents.

As more parents wrestle with finding the most loving and helpful solutions for their children struggling with gender dysphoria, the government must support them—not undermine them. Parents must remain central to the decision-making process when it comes to the medical care of children suffering from gender dysphoria.

SOURCE






Woman refused bar job because she’s gay, told to ‘dress more gender appropriate’

It is normal for businesses to have dress codes.  Why should homosexuals be exempt?

A fast food employee says she was left with no other choice but to walk out on her job after her employer told her to dress more gender appropriately.

Meagan Hunter, 35, said she loved her job at Chili’s Bar and Grill in Phoenix, Arizona, before she was told at a training program to become a manager she wasn’t able to wear the seemingly gender-neutral uniform.

She wore what male managers at Chili’s wear — a button-up shirt, fitted slacks and boat shoes — but she was told the district manager had seen her at the seminar and said she was “inappropriately dressed”.

The Chili’s store manager said he didn’t want Ms Hunter working behind the bar because she’s gay.
The Chili’s store manager said he didn’t want Ms Hunter working behind the bar because she’s gay.Source:Getty Images

Ms Hunter told the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) she initially ignored the comment until the general manger of the restaurant pushed the issue further in her interview for the promotion.

She said she was told: “We really want to hire you. However, we need you to dress more gender appropriate.”

“I said, ‘Does that mean I should have my breasts hanging out to succeed in your company?’” Ms Hunter said. “And he backtracked and said, ‘No, not in those words.’”

When Ms Hunter asked why she couldn’t wear a chef-style coat like the one her general manager wore he apparently told her, “It’s for boys.”

She said she had no other option but to quit her job because she didn’t fit her employer’s idea of what a woman should look like.

Ms Hunter was later told by co-workers that the same general manager had said he passed her over for a bartender position because he “didn’t want a gay girl behind the bar”.

He said he didn’t think she would attract the “right kind” of clientele.

The ACLU argues laws introduced nearly 30 years ago banning sex discrimination should have ended this kind of stereotyping in the workplace.

In 1989, the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of business manager Ann Hopkins in a landmark case. She was told her workplace problems would be solved if she would “walk more femininely, talk more femininely, wear make-up, have her hair styled, and wear jewellery”.

“That decision established that employers can’t punish employees because they don’t match stereotypical notions about how women or men should look and act,” the ACLU wrote.

“A growing number of lower courts have also recognised that federal law protects workers like Meagan who experience discrimination because of their sexual orientation.”

The ACLU has reportedly filed the discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, citing federal laws that ban discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation.

“When employers punish workers for who they are and what they look like, they lose valuable people like Meagan,” the ACLU said. “That’s not only wrong and bad for business, it’s also against the law.”

A Chili’s spokesperson told The Hill, a US news site, the restaurant was “alarmed” by the allegations and it doesn’t tolerate “any discriminatory behaviour in our restaurants.”

The company said Ms Hunter was not denied a promotion, but was “offered the opportunity to be promoted into our certified shift leader program to take the next step on her career journey.”

Chili’s admitted Ms Hunter was given “feedback” about the restaurant’s dress code for managers, but it said “absolutely no mention was made of any need to conform to gender-specific clothing.”

“To all of our guests, fans, former and current team members — we love you just as you are, and we intend to show that every single day,” the spokesperson said.

SOURCE






These 2 Democrats Are Finally Standing Up to Anti-Christian Bigotry in Their Party

Democrats pride themselves on “diversity.”

With the new Congress, they’ve hailed two new Muslim House members, made accomodations for religious headwear on the House floor, and celebrated record numbers of minorities in their freshman class.

This penchant for diversity makes their growing blind spot all the more glaring. That blind spot is anti-Christian bigotry, seen in the hostile questions that Democratic senators have aimed at Trump nominees that inch dangerously close to a religious test for public office.

Until recently, only Republicans had cried foul.

Senators like James Lankford, R-Okla., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, came to the defense of Amy Coney Barrett in 2017, whose qualifications to sit on a U.S. appeals court were questioned on account of her “dogma.” One senator had the gall to ask her directly whether she considered herself “an orthodox Catholic.”

So it comes as genuine relief this week that a Democrat, finally, is saying enough is enough.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii published a searing op-ed on Tuesday chiding her Democratic colleagues in the Senate for questioning Brian C. Buescher, a Trump judicial nominee, over his affiliation with the Knights of Columbus, the world’s largest Catholic civic organization.

Back in December, Sens. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, used their questioning time to scrutinize the Knights’ “extreme positions” on same-sex marriage and abortion. (Shock: The Knights of Columbus oppose both, in accordance with the Catholic Church.)

Hirono asked, “If confirmed, do you intend to end your membership with this organization to avoid any appearance of bias?”

Harris pried: “Were you aware that the Knights of Columbus opposed a woman’s right to choose when you joined the organization?”

Buescher answered: “I do not recall if I was aware whether the Knights of Columbus had taken a position on the abortion issue when I joined at the age of 18.”

In her editorial for The Hill, Gabbard pulled no punches toward her colleagues for using a man’s Catholic faith and affiliations against him. She wrote:

While I oppose the nomination of Brian Buescher to the U.S. District Court in Nebraska, I stand strongly against those who are fomenting religious bigotry, citing as disqualifiers Buescher’s Catholicism and his affiliation with the Knights of Columbus. If Buescher is ‘unqualified’ because of his Catholicism and affiliation with the Knights of Columbus, then President John F. Kennedy, and the ‘liberal lion of the Senate’ Ted Kennedy would have been ‘unqualified’ for the same reasons.

Gabbard was almost completely alone among progressives. Her side reacted furiously.

But she wasn’t completely alone. Illinois Rep. Dan Lipinski, one of the only pro-life Democrats left in the House, voiced his concern on the matter:

I would never, ever have expected that membership in the Knights of Columbus would be something that would be viewed with suspicion and maybe even worse. It’s terrible to see membership in the Knights of Columbus questioned like that, but at the core this gets back to the question of religious freedom, and it’s something that we have to continue to speak out about because we, our country, can’t afford to lose that freedom that we’re guaranteed in the First Amendment to the Constitution.

Senators who dismiss the Knights of Columbus as “extreme” show just how little they know about the organization. The Knights mostly focus on charity work for the poor, disabled, and orphaned, while raising money to educate underprivileged students who come from all religious affiliations.

They have also been working to aid persecuted Christians in the Middle East and all over the world.

The Knights of Columbus are, essentially, a Catholic version of the Rotary Club. And the depth of their giving is impressive to say the least.

The Federalist’s Helen Raleigh put it best: “The only thing extreme about [the Knights of Columbus] is their generosity.”

As we have noted before at The Daily Signal, religious tests for public office are clearly forbidden by the Constitution. Senate Democrats’ increasing hostility to nominees who hold deep Christian beliefs is a regression back to a sectarian sensibility we thought we had left behind.

In the 1920s, there was heightened tension between Catholic and Protestant Christians in America. Some, like the Ku Klux Klan, openly questioned whether Catholics could even be Americans—especially in light of the sharp increase of immigrants from Catholic countries.

The Klan painted the Knights of Columbus as a Catholic conspiracy to overthrow the Constitution and install the pope in its place. It also waged a campaign to abolish increasingly popular Columbus Day celebrations, which it considered another dastardly Catholic attempt to normalize their religious beliefs.

Democratic Sen. Robert Byrd was the last ex-klansman to serve in the Senate. But it appears some modern progressives have amnesia and are picking up the anti-Catholic torch yet again.

Certainly, a judicial nominee’s views and legal positions are relevant as to whether they are fit to serve, but attempting to disqualify them for the simple fact that they are affiliated with a specific religious group is corrosive.

The charge against the Knights of Columbus, and Buescher, seems to be that their true religion is Catholicism and not progressivism. That is a religious test in disguise—but they cannot be allowed to get by with it.

The Heritage Foundation’s Joel Griffith recently pointed out that anti-Semitism has gained a new foothold in the 116th Congress. So has anti-Catholicism. But it’s encouraging to see two brave members of the Democratic Party finally pushing back. Let their tribe increase.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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22 January, 2018

Mother breast-feeds older boys.  Child abuse?

Leftists will no doubt proclaim that only shell-backed antediluvian conservatives will be critical of this and I must admit that it at first seemed to me like a harmless eccentricity.  A psychologist with vast experience in counselling thinks otherwise however.  I reproduce his words to me below:

Lisa Bridges deludes herself that breastfeeding her four and seven year old boys is the boy's choice, when in fact it is her choice. She says she will continue to breast feed them "for as long as the boys want", which really means, for as long as she wants. 

There is a fair bit on the internet about her. She does not mind attention. She even enjoys breast feeding her boys in public. See here

She says she "is not harming anybody". I cannot agree with that.

She says she "is following her boys lead". That is utter nonsense. She is the adult, she is the governor of the dynamic between herself and her children. She enables, initiates, sets the momentum and steers the interpersonal cycles between herself and her children.

She says the boys are autistic and that breast feeding the boys calms them down. I am suspicious of any single mother who says she has an autistic son.

When counselling single mothers of primary school aged boys, I found that many of them falsely claim to have autistic sons, or sons with ADHD and other fashionable syndromes.

And when counselling imprisoned male sex offenders and other offenders, I found most were raised by single mothers -- about three quarters of them. And many resented their mothers for their abusive behaviour, including emotional and sexual abuse.

Naturally the stats sheets recorded that the prisoner reported childhood sexual or other abuse, but the electronic copies did not record the gender of the abuser. Those looking at such stats naturally assume the abuser is male, probably a father, even though most criminals do not have a father figure in their lives. The public perception is that most abusers are male. But men's and women's hearts are as dark and light as each others. It is how their abuse manifests that differs. Generally, we have our eye in for male abuse but are mostly blind to how female abuse manifests.

I have, on occasions, tried telling colleagues in welfare work about the sorts of abuse that some single mothers do to their boys, but generally they cannot accept it, even though they frequently discuss male abusers.

I can understand their initial recoiling. It is hard to face that some practices could be so frequent when women are considered to be so caring in comparison to men.

Breast feeding growing boys might seem harmless enough to some. But what other unusual attitudes and practices might be part of the family's dynamic. Perhaps the family is otherwise quite healthy and ordinary.

We all have a psychological schema, that is a network of mental-emotional-behavioural patterns that are in keeping with each other, some harmonic and supportive of each other, some locked in disharmony and opposition with each other. What the fuller picture is, healthy or unhealthy, we don't know. I do know that Lisa Bridges' attitude to breast feeding her growing boys would operate in keeping with other attitudes she holds towards men, women, children, relationships, sexuality, gender, society, likes-dislikes, desires, operative values, beliefs about herself and society, and so on. 

Lisa Bridges, to some extent, is currently sexually wiring her two boys. When they are grown men trying to establish relationships with women, and the memories flood in of their mother enticing them to lay back with her and suck her breasts, then what conditions of mind and emotion might arise in the men? internal conflict? confusion? emotional turmoil? resentment? betrayal? disgust? And how might their attitudes and behaviour towards women and themselves be effected? I could suggest several possibilities because I have seen them in other men.

If such men forgive their mothers her errors, then there will be no harm done. For there is no hurt where there is forgiveness, and subsequently no resentment and other consequences. Forgiveness does that; it cancels hurt and resentment, and dissolves unhealthy and troublesome personal and interpersonal psychological loops. But if we don't or won't forgive, then all sorts of psychological (attitudinal, mental-emotional and behavioural, and interpersonal) conditions arise and circulate through the psychological mechanism as unhealthy maladjusted loops and patterns. I have seen many examples of this outcome, not just in prison cells but in people in general.  






The Media Wildly Mischaracterized That Video of Covington Catholic Students Confronting a Native American Veteran

Journalists believed the aggressive Leftist guy, not the students in MAGA hats he was harassing.  Videos show that the students were in fact a paragon of restraint in response to a barrage of hate.  I don't think I would be so restrained if someone came up to me abusing me and banging a drum in my face

Partial video footage of students from a Catholic high school allegedly harassing a Native American veteran after the anti-abortion March for Life rally in Washington, D.C., over the weekend quickly went viral, provoking widespread condemnation of the kids on social media. Various media figures and Twitter users called for them to be doxed, shamed, or otherwise punished, and school administrators said they would consider expulsion.

But the rest of the video—nearly two hours of additional footage showing what happened before and after the encounter—adds important context that strongly contradicts the media's narrative.

Far from engaging in racially motivated harassment, the group of mostly white, MAGA-hat-wearing male teenagers remained relatively calm and restrained despite being subjected to incessant racist, homophobic, and bigoted verbal abuse by members of the bizarre religious sect Black Hebrew Israelites, who were lurking nearby. The BHI has existed since the late 19th century, and is best describes as a black nationalist cult movement; its members believe they are descendants of the ancient Israelites, and often express condemnation of white people, Christians, and gays. DC-area Black Hebrews are known to spout particularly vile bigotry.

Phillips put himself between the teens and the black nationalists, chanting and drumming as he marched straight into the middle of the group of young people. What followed was several minutes of confusion: The teens couldn't quite decide whether Phillips was on their side or not, but tentatively joined in his chanting. It's not at all clear this was intended as an act of mockery rather than solidarity.

One student did not get out of Phillips way as he marched, and gave the man a hard stare and a smile that many have described as creepy. This moment received the most media coverage: The teen has been called the product of a "hate factory" and likened to a school shooter, segregation-era racist, and member of the Ku Klux Klan. I have no idea what he was thinking, but portraying this as an example of obvious, racially-motivated hate is a stretch. Maybe he simply had no idea why this man was drumming in his face, and couldn't quite figure out the best response? It bears repeating that Phillips approached him, not the other way around.

And that's all there is to it. Phillips walked away after several minutes, the Black Hebrew Israelites continued to insult the crowd, and nothing else happened.

You can judge for yourself. Here is video footage of the full incident, from the perspective of the black nationalists. Phillips enters the picture around the 1:12 mark, but if you skip to that part, you miss an hour of the Black Hebrew Israelites hurling obscenities at the students. They call them crackers, faggots, and pedophiles. At the 1:20 mark (which comes after the Phillips incident) they call one of the few black students the n-word and tell him that his friends are going to murder him and steal his organs. At the 1:25 mark, they complain that "you give faggots rights," which prompted booing from the students. Throughout the video they threaten the kids with violence, and attempt to goad them into attacking first. The students resisted these taunts admirably: They laughed at the hecklers, and they perform a few of their school's sports cheers.

It was at this moment that Phillips, who had attended a nearby peace protest led by indigenous peoples, decided to intervene. He would later tell The Detroit Free Press that the teenagers "were in the process of attacking these four black individuals" and he decided to attempt to de-escalate the situation. He seems profoundly mistaken: The video footage taken by the black nationalists shows no evidence the white teenagers had any intention of attacking. Nevertheless, Phillips characterized the kids as "beasts" and the hate-group members as "their prey":

"There was that moment when I realized I've put myself between beast and prey," Phillips said. "These young men were beastly and these old black individuals was their prey, and I stood in between them and so they needed their pounds of flesh and they were looking at me for that."

Again, all the evidence suggests that Phillips got it backward.

He also claimed that he heard chants of "build the wall." While I cannot rule out the possibility that some of the kids indeed chanted this—those who were wearing MAGA hats are presumably Trump supporters—I did not hear a single utterance of the phrase in the nearly two hours of video footage I watched. Admittedly, the kids do a lot of chanting and it's not always possible to tell what they are saying. Their stated explanation is that they engaged in a series of school sports chants: That's what one student told a local news reporter. His account largely tracks with the video.

"We are an all-male school that loves to get hyped up," said this student. "And as we have done for years prior, we decided to do some cheers to pass time. In the midst of our cheers, we were approached by a group of adults led by Nathan Phillips, with Phillips beating his drum. They forced their way to the center of our group. We initially thought this was a cultural display since he was beating along to our cheers and so we clapped to the beat." According to this student, the smiling student was grinning because he was enjoying the music, but eventually became confused, along with everyone else. (Indeed, multiple people can be heard to shout, "what is going on?")

It would be impossible to definitively state that none of the young men did anything wrong, offensive, or problematic, at some point, and maybe the smiling student was attempting to intimidate Phillips. But there's shockingly little evidence of wrongdoing, unless donning a Trump hat and standing in a group of other people doing the same is now an act of harassment or violence. Phillips' account, meanwhile, is at best flawed, and arguably deliberately misleading.

Unless other information emerges, the school's best move would be to have a conversation with the boys about the incident, perhaps discuss some strategies for remaining on perfect behavior at highly charged political rallies—where everybody is recording everything on a cell phone—and let that be the end of it.

The boys are undoubtedly owed an apology from the numerous people who joined this social media pile-on. This is shaping up to be one of the biggest major media misfires in quite some time.

SOURCE





The ugly truth behind the women's march

The ABC carries a Reuters report that hypes an anti-Trump protest:

Women have marched in hundreds of US cities to mark the second anniversary of the demonstrations that took place the day after President Donald Trump's inauguration in January 2017...

They are aiming to mobilise women to vote ahead of the 2020 elections, when Mr Trump is expected to be the Republican nominee for president.

But the ABC/Reuters fails to note the bleeding obvious - that the crowds were way, way down, as other outlets have conceded:

the third annual Women’s March events on Saturday attracted much smaller crowds than in years past.

That is putting it very gently indeed.

In 2017, between 500,000 and 1 million women reportedly marched in Washington alone. This year just 100,000, says AP, generously. The Washington Post suggests merely "thousands".

In 2017, 400,000 reportedly marched in New York. This year just 25,000, say NY police, espite the drawcard of far-Left Democrat star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Why didn't the ABC note this?

But the ABC did in passing note - in a single paragraph - one possible cause for the collapse in numbers:

In some cities, like New York and Washington, there were more than one march or demonstration due to criticism that some Women's March leaders are anti-Semitic — a charge those leaders have sought to dispel in recent interviews and statements.

Again, that puts it mildly. Imagine what the ABC would have said if Trump had made the alleged comments that some of the march organisers made in 2016, when seven women met in New York to plan the first women's march:

According to several sources, it was there—in the first hours of the first meeting for what would become the Women’s March—that something happened that was so shameful to many of those who witnessed it, they chose to bury it like a family secret. Almost two years would pass before anyone present would speak about it.

It was there that, as the women were opening up about their backgrounds and personal investments in creating a resistance movement to Trump, [Carmen] Perez and [Tamika] Mallory allegedly first asserted that Jewish people bore a special collective responsibility as exploiters of black and brown people—and even, according to a close secondhand source, claimed that Jews were proven to have been leaders of the American slave trade. These are canards popularized by The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews, a book published by Louis Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam—“the bible of the new anti-Semitism,” according to Henry Louis Gates Jr., who noted in 1992: “Among significant sectors of the black community, this brief has become a credo of a new philosophy of black self-affirmation.”

To this day, Mallory and Bland deny any such statements were ever uttered, either at the first meeting or at Mallory’s apartment. “There was a particular conversation around how white women had centered themselves...,” remembered Bland. But she and Mallory insisted it never had anything to do with Jews. “Carmen and I were very clear at that [first] meeting that we would not take on roles as workers or staff, but that we had to be in a leadership position in order for us to engage in the march,” Mallory told Tablet, in an interview last week, adding that they had been particularly sensitive to the fact that they had been invited to the meeting by white women, and wanted to be sure they weren’t about to enter into an unfair arrangement. “Other than that, there was no particular conversation about Jewish women, or any particular group of people.”

Six of the seven women in attendance would not speak openly to Tablet about the meeting, but multiple sources with knowledge of what happened confirmed the story.

There was more of the same after the women met to discuss the success of their 2017 march:

At the end of January, according to multiple sources, there was an official debriefing at Mallory’s apartment. In attendance were Mallory, Evvie Harmon, Breanne Butler, Vanessa Wruble, Cassady Fendlay, Carmen Perez and Linda Sarsour. They should have been basking in the afterglow of their massive success, but—according to Harmon—the air was thick with conflict. “We sat in that room for hours,” Harmon told Tablet recently. “Tamika told us that the problem was that there were five white women in the room and only three women of color, and that she didn’t trust white women. Especially white women from the South.

At that point, I kind of tuned out because I was so used to hearing this type of talk from Tamika. But then I noticed the energy in the room changed. I suddenly realized that Tamika and Carmen were facing Vanessa, who was sitting on a couch, and berating her—but it wasn’t about her being white. It was about her being Jewish. ‘Your people this, your people that.’ I was raised in the South and the language that was used is language that I’m very used to hearing in rural South Carolina. Just instead of against black people, against Jewish people. They even said to her ‘your people hold all the wealth.’ You could hear a pin drop. It was awful.”

The racism got worse:

In October 2017, the group held a Women’s Convention. Attendance was reported to be high for the whole event, and was packed for the summit’s most popular panel, “Confronting White Womanhood.”

On March 11, 2018, the Women’s March had their biweekly phone call with national organizers. The public controversy had started to explode over Mallory’s attendance at the Saviours’ Day event, during which, in the course of a three-hour speech, Farrakhan blamed Jews for “degenerate behavior in Hollywood, turning men into women and women into men.” Angie Beem, president of the Washington state chapter, remembered that phone call...

Beem described a sense of awkwardness as Mallory went on to defend Farrakhan to over 40 women on the call. And she wasn’t alone, Beem said; Perez and Bland jumped in to defend him as well. “They said to us: ‘You know, he has done some great things for people of color.’ They didn’t denounce anything he said, they only did that recently..."

More:

It was around this time that Morganfield says she first heard that Nation of Islam members were acting as security detail and drivers for the co-chairs. “Bob called me secretly and said, ‘Mercy, they have been in bed with the Nation of Islam since day one: They do all of our security,’” Morganfield told Tablet.

SOURCE






Australia: Vicious false rape accuser jailed at last

An email from Bettina SArndt

For years I have been following a terrible case where a young prison officer was sent to prison following false rape accusations from his ex-partner. Today that young woman, Sarah Jane Parkinson was sentenced in Canberra to 3 years in prison, with two years non-parole. 

I’ve made a video with Dan, the young man whose life she destroyed. It is the most extraordinary story – I’m sure one day it will end up as a movie. It starts with Parkinson having an affair with a policeman which leads to Dan breaking off their engagement. Boy, talk about the wrath of the scorned. Parkinson, with the help of her crooked cop boyfriend and his mates, embark on a crusade to destroy Dan and his family. False domestic violence accusations, AVOs, alleged breaches and then a doozy of a fake rape scenario where she smashes her own head with a brick, plants empty condom packets (very considerate rapist, using a condom, eh?) and then claims the cat ate the condom.

But then the cavalry arrives, good cops led by a female detective who’s onto the corrupt antics of the Parkinson’s police mates. “Don’t fucking touch anything!” the good cops warn the bad guys. Yes, I know… It reads like a very bad script for The Bill. But it is all totally true.

Dan is immediately sent to prison following the fake rape allegations – the earlier violence accusations meant no questions asked. He’s in a maximum security prison at Goulbourn, a very scary place for a young prison officers who knows screws get a very bad time inside. He spends four months in an isolation cell for his own protection, suicidal and knowing he faces up to 15 years if convicted on the trumped up charges.

Meanwhile, with Dan taken care of, Parkinson goes after Dan’s family with false violence accusations against his dad, planting stolen goods, all manner of shenanigans. But little does she know that the good cops are running a sting on her and her copper mates, tracking their movements. So it goes on – for five long years.  

My interview with Dan is pretty long but I hope you will agree it is an amazing story. And, thankfully for once it has a good ending. Not that Parkinson’s prison sentence is any consolation for Dan losing his reputation, his job, and having to move to another state, while his parents blow their life savings paying legal bills.

Please like the video and help me circulate it:



bettina@bettinaarndt.com.au

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

***************************





21 January, 2019

Democrat Ted Lieu Trashes Mike Pence’s Christian Faith; ‘It’s Just Hate’

It sounds like Ted is the real hater here. But it is true that the Bible makes clear that God hates homosexuality.  It is an abomination to the Lord (Leviticus 20:13; Romans 1:27) it is inimical to normal family formation, which is the foundation of society, so there is wisdom there. The only marriage role Jesus saw was for a union between man and woman (Mark 10:6-9; Matthew 19:4-6)

Big time California Democrat Representative Ted Lieu fired shots at Vice President Mike Pence and his Christian faith. His outburst towards Pence and his faith called said his ways are basically hateful and made it seem like Pence is hiding his hate for homosexuals behind his religion.

Lieu then asked what Jesus Christ said about homosexuals, and then replied to his own question with the word “nothing” and continued to badger the Christian Vice President.

All of this occurred because Mike Pence jumped to his wife Karen’s defense when she began working at a private Christian school as an art teacher.

Their daughter once attended the school and Karen Pence recently took up employment there, instead of milking the government salary of her husband.

The school’s rules and guidelines ask that students and staff adhere to a set of religious principles that require those in attendance to refrain from participation in homosexual or transgender activity.

Ted Lieu appears to believe these principles and Pence’s defense of his wife and the school are hateful, stating “it’s just hate” and suggesting they’re hiding their true feelings about the gay community behind their religion.

Then the Daily Caller reported on it, stating:

“In response to Lieu’s original tweet, a Twitter user referenced three of the apostle Paul’s epistles that reinforced the disapproval of homosexual behavior. Lieu dismissed these New Testament teachings as “not by Christ.”

Immanuel Christian School’s parent agreement states that families must “acknowledge the importance of a family culture based on biblical principles and embrace biblical family values such as a healthy marriage between one man and one woman.”

When it comes to leftists forcing their agenda upon everyone, they call anyone who disagrees an intolerant bigot. When it comes to Christians believing in their religion, without pushing it upon others, they are attacked by leftists who don’t see they’re living in a wicked double standard. In this case, the leftists are the intolerant bigots who refuse to accept the religion of others, just like many people refuse to accept that a six foot man in a dress is a woman.

This is merely fake outrage sparked by the left because Christianity has been the same for years, but there wasn’t ever a peep about it until Trump was in office and his Vice President’s wife took up teaching art at a religious school.

Now that Karen Pence will be teaching art in a school that wishes to not cater to the LGBT crowd, she’ll endure rabid attacks from people who wish to force their agenda down the throat of an entire school and religion who wish to not be associated with them.

Will any hardcore leftists who attack Christianity, Karen Pence, and the school she works at be labeled as intolerant bigots?

Because that’s what they are.

SOURCE






Watch Company Launches Response To Gillette ‘Toxic Masculinity’ Ad; It Goes Viral

On Tuesday, Egard Watch Company released an advertisement on YouTube in response to Gillette’s controversial ad regarding alleged "toxic masculinity."

The video features footage of men in various situations — from fighting fires to hugging their children — while the company’s founder, Ilan Srulovicz, narrates. The footage and narration are accompanied by sobering statistics relating to men.

"What is a man?" Srulovicz asks as a fireman carries a child from a burning building. "Is a man brave?" The on-screen text reads: "Men account for 93% of workplace fatalities." The number comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

"Is a man a hero? Is a man a protector? Is a man vulnerable? Is a man disposable? Is a man broken? Is a man trying?"

As each of the above questions are asked, the following statistics are shown on the screen:

Men comprise over 97% of war fatalities. (U.S. Department of Defense)

79% of all homicide victims are male. (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime)

Nearly half of fathers without any visitation rights still financially support their children. (U.S. Census Bureau)

Men account for 80% of all suicide victims. (World Health Organization)

75% of single homeless people are men. (National Coalition for the Homeless)

"We see the good in men," Srulovicz concludes.

Although the company’s YouTube channel has only 5,500 subscribers, the video has been watched more than 766,000 times, and features a 64:1 "like" to "dislike" ratio as of publication.

The Daily Wire spoke with Ilan Srulovicz about his YouTube video, as well as Gillette’s controversial advertisement:

DW: What was your response to the Gillette commercial?

SRULOVICZ: If I’m being honest, my initial response from a visceral standpoint was a negative one. Whether it’s justified or not, I felt a little bit offended. I felt like it painted with too broad a brush. At the same time, I also understood what they were trying to say. I just don’t think it was the right way to say it.

I think that there’s a very strong movement in society that’s very pervasive, and from an advertising perspective, I can see how Gillette felt like that was the right move — that’s the ongoing narrative.

I’m absolutely for addressing issues like sexual assault and bullying, and I think the unfortunate thing that the Gillette ad seems to miss is that most guys feel the same way.

DW: What drove you to make your own commercial addressing this issue?

SRULOVICZ: I did the commercial completely on my own because I didn’t get support necessarily from the people around me. They were a little bit worried that a message that was so contrary to Gillette’s message would not be well received. I think they were just trying to protect me. I think they believe in the message of the commercial, but I think they were just trying to say, "Is it worth the risk to put your company behind this message?"

Srulovicz said that he was at one point being urged to do the video anonymously, but that a quote pushed him to release it as a company advertisement: "There are only two places actions can come from — they’re either going to come from fear or they’re going to come from love."

SRULOVICZ: Releasing it anonymously felt like an action out of fear, not out of love. Putting something I’ve built and something that means so much to me behind this video would be an action out of love. So, I decided to go in that direction. I also thought that an anonymous video wouldn’t have the same impact as a company saying, "This type of message is okay. This type of message is good."

According to Srulovicz, the overwhelmingly positive response to the video was quite unexpected. He foresaw a potentially negative response.

SRULOVICZ: I had friends tell me that a message like this draws away from women’s rights issues, and it’s not the right time, or the current political climate isn’t right for this kind of message. I just don’t see why it has to be an either/or thing; it’s not a competition. Suffering should never be a competition; uplifting people should never be a competition. We should all have positive messages, and I think companies have lost track of that. You should want to uplift people in your advertisements, not lecture them or generalize an entire group.

I decided to just take a stand and do it. I spent my own money on it; I recorded it myself; I did the editing myself because it was the only way I could go about it and not be influenced by anyone – and that was important. I didn’t want to have it get pulled back, or not get the statistics out that are very real, and often sadly ignored in society.

DW: There are going to be people who say that you saw the conservative backlash to the Gillette commercial, and, knowing that a large portion of the country is right-leaning, used this as a cynical marketing ploy. What would you say to that?

SRULOVICZ: As I said before, I actually expected a negative response, not a positive one. So, I didn’t expect this to help my company necessarily. The reason I put my company behind it was because it’s easier for an individual to go out and say, "I believe in this message." It’s much more difficult for a company to do that.

Right now, I have contracts with large-scale companies, with celebrities, and for me to stand up and put out a message, I would realistically have to make sure that the message was not controversial on any level. I’m not Gillette; I don’t have that kind of backing where I can take chances.

Of course there will be people who think it’s a ploy to take advantage of the Gillette backlash. What I actually hope out of all of this is that other companies take notice, and start creating positive messages for men.

I just don’t understand why we live in a time where we have to divide each other in that way; why you have to make a controversial ad. Gillette could have easily made an incredibly positive ad for men at a time when no one wants to do that, and I believe that they would have had an amazing response.

I also think that if you want to effect change in society, you don’t do it by lecturing people, you do it by giving them a positive message, you do it by showing who the best men are. If I want to make a message that has an impact on society, am I going to do it by saying, "These are the worst of us, and some of us aren’t this, but that’s not enough" or am I going to say, "These are the best of us, and many of us are that – and to those who aren’t, this is what we can inspire people to be. This is what we represent as a gender, as a people, as a society."

DW: Is there anything we haven’t touched on that you would like to say?

SRULOVICZ: The nice thing from all of this is the response, not just from men, but from women. It’s not just men who are wanting this kind of positive message for men — there are mothers out there who have male children; there are wives who have husbands. It’s not just one group that’s affected by negativity; it’s everyone. There are so many women who stand behind positive messages for men.

The Daily Wire would like to thank Ilan Srulovicz for speaking with us about his commercial and his company.

SOURCE








Marines Hoist White Flag To Social Justice Warriors

The United States Marine Corps may have battled America’s enemies from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli, but today’s Marine Corps leadership has hoisted the white flag to social justice warriors demanding the Corps continue the destructive social engineering experiments of the Obama administration.

The latest Marine Corps capitulation courtesy of Marine Corps Commandant General Robert B. Neller was on the long-contentious issue of co-ed basic training.

Our friend Elaine Donnelly, founder and president of the Center for Military Readiness, gave us the heads-up that Neller quietly announced on a Friday afternoon that for the first time in history, a platoon of fifty enlisted female recruits would be housed and trained alongside five male platoons in the 3rd Training Battalion at the Marines’ Parris Island boot camp.

If this were a good and certain to be well-received policy, it would have been trumpeted from the parapet of the Pentagon. However, since the announcement was buried on a Friday afternoon news cycle in the midst of the government shutdown controversy you can be sure that Neller and the Obama holdovers at the Pentagon knew it would not be well-received by Republicans on the Hill, the conservative national defense constituency and a White House that doesn’t need or want another Obama-era policy to defend.

According to a Marine spokesman speaking to ABC News, boot camp recruit classes typically are much smaller in the winter months.  Housing one female platoon with five male ones in the 3rd Training Battalion allows temporary de-activation of the all-female 4th Training Battalion.

The excuse was lame, at best says Elaine Donnelly.  The Marines’ Delayed Entry Program (DEP) sends new recruits to boot camp on timetables set by the needs of the service, not the weather.  Someone should find out why there aren’t enough female recruits to populate the 4th Training Battalion.  Perhaps young women are shunning recruiters because they know that once they sign up, they might be ordered into ground combat units on the same involuntary basis as men.

Officials also made the disingenuous claim that the “temporary” change would support “training efficiency.”  But within a week, Marine Corps Times reported that the female platoon co-located in the men’s training battalion “may not be the last.”

Speaking at a forum in Washington, D.C., Marine Sergeant Major Ronald Green said the service doesn’t “do things as a one-time deal.”  Green added that the intent is to give everyone “the greatest opportunity for success.”

Marine Sergeant Major Green’s “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” comment failed to recognize that boot camp is not about individual “success.”  Its mission is to transform ordinary civilians into disciplined male and female Marines.

Elaine Donnelly also noted that the Marine Corps Times article confirmed General Neller’s needless campaign to increase the percentage of female Marines from 8.9% to 10%.  That quota, unfortunately, signals that the Marines are assigning highest priority to political correctness over mission readiness and combat lethality.  The Trump Administration should revoke this and all gender diversity mandates, including the 25% quotas that still apply in in the Navy, Army, and Air Force.

Sergeant Major Green also said that assessments of the gender-mixed battalion would determine “whether it is a model the Corps should continue.”  Based on previous Pentagon practices, however, assessments of the gender-mixed battalion likely will center on sociological goals, not the primary military goal: transformation of undisciplined civilians into Marines.

Officials and media will claim that standards are “gender-neutral” and women are doing the same things as men.

Half-truths such as this in all the services, however, are misleading says Elaine Donnelly.  Under the Dempsey Rule, which Donnelly named for former Joint Chiefs Chairman General Martin Dempsey, high standards that women cannot meet are being re-evaluated, dropped, or scored differently to ensure female trainee “success.”

An example of how this works occurred last year at the Marines’ Infantry Officer Course (IOC) at Quantico, VA.  As CMR reported in 2018, only one female officer out of more than thirty had passed the IOC.  Most failed on the grueling Combat Endurance Test (CET) – the first and toughest challenge in the Infantry Officer Course conducted at Quantico, VA.

The incredibly tough CET event was designed to identify and prepare infantry officers who are capable of leading other men on the battlefield, from the front.  With uncompromising physical demands and high attrition rates, the first-day test was working to separate the best from the rest.

The system was not broken, but in November 2017, without prior notice, General Neller decided to “fix” it.  Neller changed the must-pass CET into a success-optional Combat Evaluation Test.  The acronym remains the same, but now the CET is just another evaluation data point.  Seven months later, a second female officer passed the course.

All branches of the service are struggling to make changes in basic physical fitness and combat fitness tests (PFT/CFT).  They are finding it difficult to challenge stronger men without causing disproportionate injuries among women.  Gender-normed scores are justifiable in basic, entry-level, and pre-commissioning training, but not in advanced courses qualifying personnel for the combat arms.

Donnelly says, and we agree, that controversies surrounding co-ed boot camp are only part of the larger debate about the consequences of treating men and women as if they are interchangeable in all military positions, including combat arms units such as the infantry.  This debate must include an honest re-assessment of conditions leading to sexual misconduct in the military -- a problem that eviscerates morale and readiness in America’s military, and may have roots in co-ed basic training.

In the classic military and bureaucratic imperative, promotable officers and drill instructors will do everything possible to ensure that women are happy.  Over time standards or evaluations will change without notice, and the incremental experiment will be declared successful, justifying more “progress” in the wrong direction.

We urge CHQ readers and friends to call the White House at 202-456-1111 or use this link to email the White House to let President Trump know you demand he reverse the Marine Corps destructive decision to train male and female recruits together.

SOURCE







Dying with their Rights On: The Myths and Realities of Ending Homelessness in Australia

Dr Carlos d’Abrera, psychiatrist, makes points below that extend well beyond Australia.  The problem is far from one of housing only

A growing problem or a misplaced definition?  If you were to ask the average Australian what they understand by the term ‘homeless’, the most common answer would be ‘a person who sleeps rough, and usually on the streets’.

Despite this common perception, only 7% (8200) of the 116,427 homeless persons counted nationally on census night 2016 met this definition of homelessness. This percentage is unchanged from 2011, although the numbers of people sleeping rough increased by approximately 2000 persons nationally between 2011 and 2016.

This is despite governmental spending on homelessness exceeding $817.4 million in 2016-17, an increase of 29% from $634.2 million in 2012-13. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data indicates that the total number of homeless persons has grown from 89,728 in 2006 to 116,427 in 2016 — an increase of 30% over the decade.

These inflated figures are based on a questionable official definition of homelessness adopted by the ABS in 2012 that includes the ‘housed homeless’ (such as those living in supported accommodation) and people living in overcrowded accommodation. Prior to this, a so-called ‘cultural’ definition of homelessness was used.

The revised ‘ABS definition’ worsened the apparent extent of the homelessness problem overnight. People living in severely overcrowded accommodation represent both the largest and most rapidly growing proportion of the officially homeless. Homeless rates in the other categories have remained largely unchanged over the past decade.

According to the ABS Census data, people living in severely overcrowded dwellings rose from 31,531 in 2006 to 51,088 in 2016. Most of the increase over that period is in NSW — where the jump has been from 27% to 45% of the total homeless population in that state. Overcrowding has increased most in the cities of Sydney and Melbourne where rates of net overseas migration have been the highest.

For some groups, such as recent migrants, living in crowded dwellings is a rational economic decision, while for others it may reflect cultural preferences for shared living spaces of people who would never consider themselves homeless.

‘Homelessness industry’ obscures the small subset of those most in need

It is in the interest of the ‘homelessness industry’ — the academics, charities and NGOS that undertake research, conduct advocacy, and lobby government for more taxpayerfunded spending on the alleged problems and solutions — for the numbers of homeless to be artificially high.

The orthodox understanding of the causes of homelessness promoted by the industry overemphasises the role of economic and social structures (structuralism). Solutions based on structuralist explanations — such as increasingly the supply of affordable social housing — are insufficient to reduce genuine homelessness. Such approaches dilute out those most at risk and most in need; chronic rough sleepers. They also minimise the role of, and fail to address, the individual characteristics, choices, and behaviours — especially the high rates of mental illness and drug abuse — that afflict rough sleepers.

Structural ‘solutions’ with respect to current public housing policy also exacerbate the problems they are designed to solve by maintaining people on the margins of homelessness. Breakdowns in social housing tenancies are often related to the antisocial behaviours and criminal activities associated with drug use (especially methamphetamines). While tenancy support provides an opportunity for vulnerable individuals with complex needs to maintain housing, there is too much scope for such persons to refuse support and to potentially face eviction.

Policy Recommendations: Benign and enlightened paternalism

An inverse moral panic — an ideological fear of being perceived to support ‘moralistic’ policies that violate the autonomy of rough sleepers — has paralysed our treatment of the most severely homeless in recent decades. Homelessness services have proved unable to reduce the numbers of rough sleepers because of an unwillingness to implement the necessarily assertive strategies that are required to help the most vulnerable exit the streets.

A truly compassionate community should not fail to intervene to stop the poor choices and wide range of health, social, and physical harms that are linked to the cognitive impairments — such as mental illness and substance abuse problems — that lead to rough sleeping.

To effectively reduce genuine homelessness and stop those who sleep rough on our streets from ‘dying with their rights on’, the following benign and enlightened paternalistic policies should be implemented:

* Underpinning assertive outreach programs for rough sleepers with a non-opt-out triage process to reduce non-participation and ensure those who mentally ill are referred to mental health services and treated assertively.

* Appointing public guardians to help make decisions on behalf of rough sleepers who lack decision-making capacity.

* Expanding mandatory drug treatment for individuals who are homeless or at high risk of homelessness to improve the chances of maintaining stable accommodation.

* Requiring occupants of public housing referred to mental health services to accept mandatory psychosocial support as a condition of ongoing tenancy (consistent with the principle of mutual obligation).

* Re-establishing long term institutional care facilities for that proportion of chronically homeless people, particularly those with mental illness and complex needs who would benefit from high levels of support

SOURCE  

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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20 January, 2018

Parents Versus the 'Transgender' State

Leftists seek to impose the values of their "new morality" via the heavy hand of government.

The Founding Fathers recognized the dangers inherent in government authorities using their power to abuse citizens and therefore sought to prevent and limit this probability via the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The First Amendment specifically protects every American citizen’s right to freely express themselves and live according to their beliefs.

We are now living in an era when those protections are being threatened more than ever. In their efforts to promote the rights of individuals to engage in behaviors that were once widely viewed and condemned by the cultural majority as immoral and repugnant, “social justice” activists citing “tolerance” and appealing to the First Amendment were successful in securing greater governmental protections for these fringe groups.

But having established greater governmental protections, along with a growing cultural acceptance, ironically, these same leftist “social justice” activists have now ditched tolerance and are actively working to erode those First Amendment protections they originally appealed to. Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Religion have now become roadblocks to their new morality agenda.

Few examples display the reality of this agenda more clearly than the actions by several states to pass laws designed to force acceptance of the new morality. Those who have suffered most under this new “inclusive” agenda include florists, cake bakers, and wedding photographers. But it has not been limited to the states. On the federal level, one of the biggest examples of First Amendment encroachment has been ObamaCare and its contraception mandate.

Now with the rise of the “transgender” movement and its celebration by leftist activists in pop culture, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is aiming to force all Americans into embracing the new “morality.” Following her state’s lead, one of Pelosi’s biggest priorities is the Equality Act, which would add sexual orientation and “gender identity” as official protected classifications under the 1964 Civil Rights Act. By doing so, both parents and the medical community would lose their First Amendment rights to object to their child’s or patient’s gender dysphoria-motivated desires. They would be forced to abide by these deluded desires or risk losing their children or medical license.

As Emilie Kao writes in The Daily Signal, “The Equality Act would expedite this trend by giving the transgender movement a powerful legal weapon to drive medical consensus that could undermine the rights of parents. As more parents wrestle with finding the most loving and helpful solutions for their children struggling with gender dysphoria, the government must support them — not undermine them. Parents must remain central to the decision-making process when it comes to the medical care of children suffering from gender dysphoria.”

SOURCE






The Left Attacks Trump’s Pick to Replace Brett Kavanaugh for Her Smart College Writings

Young conservatives, be warned: Reasonable ideas written in college—such as the notion that binge drinking can lead to dangerous consequences for young women—can and will be twisted and used against you should you be nominated for high-powered positions two and a half decades later.

That’s what’s happening to Neomi Rao, President Donald Trump’s nominee to replace Brett Kavanaugh on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and who reportedly is on the short list for the Supreme Court.

Rao, a 45-year-old Indian-American, has become the latest target of liberal activist groups and media smears, including BuzzFeed News, CNN, Mother Jones, Alliance for Justice, and Lambda Legal.

She is a brilliant legal scholar with decades of experience writing as a lawyer and law professor at George Mason University, but that’s now being overlooked because of some columns in college.

Her writings were published in the early 1990s, when Rao wrote for the Yale Free Press student newspaper as an open conservative at Yale University. She also briefly wrote for The Weekly Standard.

“'[S]he described race as a ‘hot, money-making issue,’ affirmative action as the ‘anointed dragon of liberal excess,’ welfare as being ‘for the indigent and lazy,’ and LGBT issues as part of ‘trendy’ political movements,” wrote BuzzFeed News. “On date rape, Rao wrote that if a woman ‘drinks to the point where she can no longer choose, well, getting to that point was part of her choice.’”

Reading Rao’s original work might take a significant amount of time, but the experience is worth it to see how easily a journalist with an agenda can cherry-pick the most provocative few words in a person’s long, thoughtful work.

Take the example of Rao’s 1994 op-ed in The Yale Herald, headlined “Shades of Gray,” where she did indeed write that if a woman “drinks to the point where she can no longer choose, well, getting to that point was part of her choice.”

Activist groups are twisting this line to suggest Rao believes it’s women’s fault when they get raped, but that’s not what she said at all.

Rao wrote firmly that men should be prosecuted and held responsible for rape—not once, but twice, in case the point wasn’t clear.

“A man who rapes a drunk girl should be prosecuted. At the same time, a good way to avoid a potential date rape is to stay reasonably sober,” she wrote.

Provocative, sure, but Rao’s being punished for predicting the sexual assault crisis that’s now exploded on college campuses, and for raising important questions we still haven’t solved. Do women hold any responsibility when they drink too much and consent to something they later regret? Rao concluded: 

Clearly, if the male student forced the woman to have sex against her will, then he should be held responsible. Yet the role of alcohol severely complicates the scenario. People often drink precisely so that they may limit their responsibility. They want to forget about their papers and their problems. They want to have fun, and not think so hard.

Since the case rests only upon the testimony of the students who were involved, who decides the truth? A woman makes an accusation, a man denies it. At Yale, this gives the Executive Committee another opportunity to exercise their particular brand of judgment.

More than two decades later, the U.S. Department of Education is still asking these important questions, with Education Secretary Betsy DeVos most recently working to restore the rights of those accused.

But somehow, liberal media and activist groups find these ideas unacceptable for a college student in 1994 to explore.

One side says #BelieveAllWomen, while the other wants evidence and facts. In context Rao simply asks:

Can the liberated ’90s woman freely choose whether to drink or not? Unless someone made her drinks undetectably strong or forced them down her throat, a woman, like a man, decides when and how much to drink. And if she drinks to the point where she can no longer choose, well, getting to that point was part of her choice. Implying that a drunk woman has no control of her actions, but that a drunk man does, strips woman of all moral responsibility. It creates a culture of victimization in which men are prowling and uncontrollable, and women are weak and helpless. Any self-respecting person should be troubled and offended by such ideas.

Nan Aron, president of the liberal advocacy group Alliance for Justice, which “first highlighted Rao’s college writings to BuzzFeed News,” claimed Rao’s columns were “hostile to sexual assault survivors.”

Justice Department spokesperson Kerri Kupec responded to the inflammatory allegation, telling BuzzFeed News that Rao’s contributions to her student newspaper were “intentionally provocative,” which is any good writer’s job.

Rao’s arguments were reasoned and courageous. They demonstrate her ability to raise countercultural arguments and articulate their defense—an important quality in any good judge.

Instead of punishing Rao for addressing controversial topics on college campuses, society should be doing the opposite. We should praise her for having the courage to swim against the current because, right or wrong, college is the time to explore.

And instead of writing splashy headlines about the writings of a 19-year-old, we should look at Rao’s professional record and achievements since then.

After receiving a B.A. from Yale University and a law degree from the University of Chicago, Rao clerked for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. (A former intern at The Heritage Foundation, she recently received the think tank’s Distinguished Intern Alumni Award.)

She served in all three branches of government, then went on to found the Antonin Scalia Law School’s Center for the Study of the Administrative State at George Mason University.

Currently, Rao is serving as administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget, known as “the most important office you’ve never heard of.”

There, she oversees Trump’s ambitious deregulatory agenda. She’s respected by colleagues as a brilliant legal mind, and is considered one of the foremost experts in administrative law.

In other words, Rao is a force to be reckoned with in Washington and beyond. An Indian-American woman from Detroit, she’s an obvious threat to the those on the left.

If digging up old, provocative works from college is the worst they’ve got, Rao will sail through her confirmation hearings for the D.C. Circuit and eventually, possibly the Supreme Court.

But we learned from the Kavanaugh hearings that the left won’t stop at anything, so conservatives best come prepared. There’s no telling how low they’ll go.

SOURCE







Marking Anniversary of Religious Freedom Law, Acting AG Whitaker Laments Loss of Support From Left

In 1993, President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, signed broad consensus legislation to protect religious liberty, with support from religious conservative groups and the American Civil Liberties Union alike, which helped it sail through Congress.

Twenty-five years later, however, religious freedom has become a highly contentious issue, and many Democrats and liberal groups have sought to undermine the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker said Wednesday.

Whitaker expressed regret about the shift by Democrats.

“Today, many of [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act’s] original supporters, including the ACLU, have changed their mind,” he said in remarks at The Heritage Foundation.

“In recent years, when some states have attempted to pass their own version of [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act], they have been met with bitterness and hostility,” Whitaker said. “Meanwhile, others have disregarded both the spirit and the letter of [the law]. They have tried to use the power of the state to make people choose between following their core beliefs and being ‘good citizens’ even when it is not remotely necessary.”

The 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act, sponsored by then-Rep. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., cleared the House unanimously and passed the Senate 97-3, when both chambers were controlled by Democrats. It took effect in November of that year.

The law states the federal government can’t burden an individual’s exercise of religion unless it is in seeking to further a compelling public interest, and even then must do so by the least restrictive means.

Whitaker cited cases where the federal government tried to force nuns to provide contraception and of the Supreme Court ruling in favor of a Colorado baker penalized by that state for refusing to design a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

He also noted that Democratic senators have attacked President Donald Trump’s nominees for their religious views.

“Religious freedom makes our country strong,” Whitaker said. “That is why threats to our religious freedom are also threats to our national strength.”

Under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, “religious freedom is not absolute, but is protected by the highest standards under constitutional law,” Whitaker said.  “Government is still able to fulfill its purposes, just without infringing on other people’s rights. It is a remarkable thing for a government to impose such a restraint on itself, and it is unique to the American system.”

Clinton signed the bill in a White House ceremony that had the backing of both religious conservatives and the ACLU.

“It would have been much easier for a government to disregard the cost upon individual liberty and conscience,” Whitaker said. “In all too many countries … that’s exactly what governments are currently doing. But the enactment of [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act] was a bold affirmation that religious freedom and the freedom of conscience are precious and deserving of protection—even if it makes things a little harder for the government.”

Whitaker noted the efforts the Trump administration has made to defend the first freedom of the First Amendment.

Trump’s Justice Department has obtained 14 indictments and 10 convictions in cases involving attacks on, or threats against, houses of worship and individuals based on religion. It also secured 50 hate crime indictments and 30 convictions regarding attacks on people based on their religion. 

Further, the administration defended parents in Montana who claim that the state barred their children from a private school scholarship program because they attend a religiously affiliated school.

The administration filed five amicus briefs in cases alleging religious discrimination in local zoning laws that included cases on behalf of a Hindu temple and a Catholic church, Whitaker noted. The administration is also defending the constitutionality of a World War I memorial in the shape of a cross in Maryland.

Those are among the issues that Whitaker said he has worked closely on, first as chief of staff for then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then as acting attorney general.

“Religious liberty and the rule of law are two subjects that [Attorney General] Sessions felt passionate about,” Whitaker told The Daily Signal in an interview after his remarks. “When I came in, I personally drove some of these cases to conclusion.”

If you notice, some of these cases were resolved in October and November, and it’s because I came in and knew how important these were, and really drove them to conclusion. I feel really strongly about this.

I take great pride [in], and very seriously, our obligations under [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act] and protecting all people of faith from undue burdens of the federal government. I hope it continues under Attorney General [nominee William] Barr, and I expect it will. 

Congress took up the Religious Freedom Restoration Act legislation after the 1990 Supreme Court ruling in the case of Employment Division v. Smith seemed to be overly broad in addressing a lawsuit by an employee fired for ingesting the hallucinogenic drug peyote while at work.

The court ruled the employee could not claim the right to do so as a practice of his Native American religion.

During the 1993 bill-signing ceremony, Clinton said, “It is interesting to note … what a broad coalition of Americans came together … to protect perhaps the most precious of all American liberties, religious freedom.”

Then-Vice President Al Gore also spoke, saying, “When you have the National Association of Evangelicals and the ACLU … we’re doing something right.”

“The country was very different 25 years ago,” Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James said at Wednesday’s event with Whitaker. “A coalition from across the ideological spectrum, including everyone from Nadine Strossen of the ACLU and Mike Farris, who is now the CEO of Alliance Defending Freedom, came together to bolster freedoms that were limited by an unfortunate Supreme Court decision. …

“Boy, have times changed. I wish we could get that kind of bipartisan support today for something that is so important, like this. The political left has actively worked to undercut our freedoms,” she said.

James cited attempts by government to force religious institutions and even pro-life groups to pay for abortion-inducing drugs, and forcing small businesses to act contrary to their religious values. 

Whitaker cited the Founders’ vision for religious freedom; namely, that of Thomas Jefferson.

“On his tombstone, it does not say he served as president of the United States,” Whitaker said of Jefferson. “It says three things, that he authored the Declaration of Independence, that he founded the University of Virginia, and that he authored the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.”

It was James Madison who championed the religious freedom statute in the Virginia Legislature. 

“Within a few years, Madison became the father of the Constitution and the author of the First Amendment,” Whitaker added. “Jefferson, Madison, and the rest of the Founders took great care to protect the rights of religious people in this country, and we look back now, and we can see why: because religious freedom has made this country stronger.”

SOURCE







Forward: The publication for self-hating Jews is folding

Go woke, go broke applies to non-profits too. Does this mean we'll see fewer Forward articles like, "Why We Should Applaud The Politician Who Said Jews Control The Weather"?

The Forward is stopping — its print editions.

Not really news. Nobody has looked at a print copy of The Forward's deranged anti-Semitic ravings in years. I didn't even know they still had one.

The storied Jewish-American publication is suspending its print operations and plans to lay off about 40 percent of its editorial staff — including Editor-in-Chief Jane Eisner — while moving to digital-only.

The Forward hasn't been Jewish since Eisner decided to dump the "Jewish" part some years back while transitioning the paper from lefty politics to explicitly anti-Semitic politics.

Eisner's departure is the best news in a while, but there's no doubt that she'll land securely somewhere else in the mediacracy.

“We are announcing that this spring The Forward will complete its evolution from what was once a print-focused publisher to become a digitally focused publication.”

So it'll just be a blog now.

“The revenue is not really there,” said a source. “They’ve been losing money for years but lately the losses have been more than $5 million a year.”

The publication is owned by The Forward Association, a not-for-profit whose endowment swelled to more than $100 million when the association sold its former headquarters on the Lower East Side as well as the radio station WEVD.

WEVD once provided Jewish programming. The headquarters was turned into condos.

What exactly is The Forward Association doing with all that money, except paying staffers to defend anti-Semitism and spew hatred?

Good question.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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18 January, 2018

American Academy of Pediatrics Says No More Spanking or Harsh Verbal Discipline

Many of the major medical journals have come to resemble the global warming literature, with its low level of scholarship and determination to push an ideological agenda.  It is quite depressing.  Anyway, the latest heap of crap is below.  I follow the official pronunciamento with the abstract of the only study they refer to in support of their claims. So I will confine my comments to that study.

The study is a typical Leftist bit of over-simplification that totally ignores individual differences.  All men are equal so everybody must have the same disciplinary regime, apparently.  The idea that what works for one kid may not work for another cannot be entertained. My father never laid a hand on me and I never laid a hand on my son but that doesn't persuade me into thinking that you can bring up all kids that way.  Some kids really "try it on" and need some sort of physical discipline to enforce guidelines. I remember a dear little boy who was a real horror in his very permissive home but who was always an angel at my place because I once twisted his ear.

Just talking to defiant kids they despise. They think you are weak.   Without discipline they will almost certainly go into some sort of crime later on in life.  The little boy I mentioned above had a very rough teenagerhood but he eventually learned to follow the rules and is now doing very well. Luckily he was quite bright.

So the averages may be as reported below but what was behind the averages is far more important.  Clearly, some kids received discipline but still came out OK but we are told nothing about them.

Moreover, it was only the father’s high-frequency spanking at age 5 that was associated with less desirable outcomes.  What about lower frequency spanking?  That was apparently OK.  So, if you read the details in the article, spanking seems to be no problem.  It is only "high frequency" spanking that should be deplored.  What a laugh!  As is so often the case in science, the authors concluded what they wanted to conclude -- rather than what their results show.  I saw that frequently in my research career.



The largest professional organization for US pediatricians is taking a strict stance against parents, caregivers, and other adults using spanking, hitting, or slapping to discipline children. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently released an updated policy statement on corporal punishment—the first major revise since 1998—based on accumulating evidence that physical punishments don’t work in the long-term and could even cause unintended harms. The policy also recommends against verbal discipline that causes shame or humiliation.

Robert Sege, MD, PhD, the policy’s coauthor and a pediatrician at the Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, recently spoke with JAMA about the AAP’s position on corporal punishment and how physicians can help parents discipline more safely and effectively. The following is an edited version of that conversation.

JAMA:What’s the AAP’s new policy on corporal punishment?

Dr Sege:First, parents should not use corporal punishment, including hitting and spanking, either in anger or as punishment. And, also, they shouldn’t use verbal punishment that causes shame or humiliation.

JAMA:What’s different about this policy statement?

Dr Sege:The 1998 statement discouraged parents from spanking their children and suggested that pediatricians help parents not to spank their children, but it was a little wishy-washy. What’s happened in the 20 years since then is that the data has really been overwhelming about how corporal punishment is ineffective and how it’s potentially risky. Parenting is a very personal thing and, of course, parents make their own decisions about how they want to raise their children. Our feeling at the American Academy of Pediatrics is that the role of doctors is to give parents the best evidence-informed guidance that we possibly can with which to make their decisions. And all of what we know says parents should never hit their children.

JAMA:What do recent studies tell us about the effectiveness of spanking and other physical discipline?

Dr Sege:A meta-analysis of a large number of studies showed that corporal punishment doesn’t work. It doesn’t cause children to change their own behavior, certainly not in the medium- or long-term. There were small studies that had mediocre study quality that showed that there’s a temporary change in a child’s behavior. But, of course, what parents want is to change the children’s behavior over the longer-term.

JAMA:What do we know about the consequences of corporal punishment on children?

Dr Sege:There are 3 main kinds of consequences. The first is that it increases their aggressive behavior and causes them more problems in school and with their parents. In the largest study of its kind—a longitudinal study that followed children over several years—children who were spanked had more problematic and aggressive behavior [later]. Corporal punishment often led to a vicious cycle, where the children became more oppositional as they experienced corporal punishment, causing their behavior to get worse. [The association between spanking and higher levels of aggression and rule-breaking remained after child and family characteristics were controlled for, including earlier behavior problems and mother’s parenting stress.]

SOURCE

Spanking and Child Development Across the First Decade of Life

Michael J. MacKenzie et al.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To examine the prevalence of maternal and paternal spanking of children at 3 and 5 years of age and the associations between spanking and children’s externalizing behavior and receptive vocabulary through age 9.

METHODS: The Fragile Families and Child Well-Being Study, a longitudinal birth cohort study of children in 20 medium to large US cities, was used. Parental reports of spanking were assessed at age 3 and 5, along with child externalizing behavior and receptive vocabulary at age 9 (N = 1933). The data set also included an extensive set of child and family controls (including earlier measures of the child outcomes).

RESULTS: Overall, 57% of mothers and 40% of fathers engaged in spanking when children were age 3, and 52% of mothers and 33% of fathers engaged in spanking at age 5. Maternal spanking at age 5, even at low levels, was associated with higher levels of child externalizing behavior at age 9, even after an array of risks and earlier child behavior were controlled for. Father’s high-frequency spanking at age 5 was associated with lower child receptive vocabulary scores at age 9.

CONCLUSIONS: Spanking remains a typical rearing experience for American children. These results demonstrate negative effects of spanking on child behavioral and cognitive development in a longitudinal sample from birth through 9 years of age.

SOURCE






Procter & Gamble's Toxic Sanctimony

It's a truly amazing destruction of a brand by its own management. It will go down in marketing history. Two minutes that ruined a company. One would expect that the management are a green new generation but the key executives are in fact all no spring chickens.  I guess they just want to be hailed as virtuous in their old age.  Their ego is destroying their company

One of the world's most successful brands committed ideological hara-kiri this week. Recognized around the world as a symbol of manly civility for more than a century, Gillette will now be remembered as the company that did itself in by sacrificing a massive consumer base at the altar of progressivism.

To which I say: R.I.P.-C. (Rest In Political Correctness).

In case you hadn't seen or heard, parent company Procter & Gamble launched a Gillette ad campaign blanket-demonizing men as ogres and bullies. Guilt-ridden actors gaze ruefully at their reflections in the mirror — not because they've neglected their hygiene, but simply because they're men. Various scenarios of boys being boors and males being monsters flash across the screen before woke interlocutors show how "real" men behave in nonaggressive, conciliatory and apologetic ways.

At home and at work, in the boardroom, on the playground, and even while barbecuing in the backyard, Gillette sees nothing but testosterone-driven trouble. Message: Y chromosomes are toxic. The "best a man can get" can no longer be attained without first renouncing oppressive manliness.

Self-improvement must begin with self-flagellation.

A Gillette company statement explained that after "taking a hard look at our past" and "reflecting on the types of men and behaviors we want to celebrate," officials decided to "actively challenge the stereotypes and expectations of what it means to be a man everywhere you see Gillette."

But Proctor & Gamble, which bought Gillette in 2005 for $57 billion, doesn't spell out which part exactly of the 118-year-old company's past it now rejects. Was it founder King Gillette, the relentless entrepreneur who appealed to "red-blooded" young American soldiers? Was it the decades of multimillion-dollar promotional campaigns catering to physically superior athletes?

Or perhaps the mau-mauing marketers have adopted the radical feminist position that shaving itself is sexist. Is the ultimate goal to undermine the very raison d'etre of the $15 billion shave care industry?

I ask only half in jest. How else to explain this latest suicidal episode of collective consumer-shaming? Gillette's two-minute, man-bashing missive may have racked up 7 million views on YouTube, but the "dislikes" outnumber "likes" by 4 to 1.

And the reviews are brutal:

"How to destroy your company in 1 minute 48 seconds."

"Companies attempting to make profit should stick to that."

"The single male is the most attacked maligned ridiculed and forgotten person in today's society."

"You can buy High Quality Razors that are NOT Gillette at the 99 Cents Store with NO lecturing on how to be a Man."

"I'll buy P&G products again when I see them release an equivalent ad targeting negative female traits: toxic femininity/paternity fraud/fake accusations... doubt that's going to happen any time soon!"

"So now Gillette thinks that it is the arbiter of what all men should think, say, and watch. Screw Gillette, bought their products for almost 50 years, I will never buy another Gillette product. NEVER!!!"

"Thank you Gillette, I purchased your razors and chopped off my testicles with it. No more toxic masculinity!"

Ouch.

You may remember that P&G, which I un-fondly refer to Protest & Grumble, has dipped its sanctimonious toe into social justice waters before. In 2017, the company tackled identity politics with a video called "The Talk." The preachy ad stoked fear and hatred of police and perpetuated racial stereotypes of officers lurking around every corner waiting to pounce on innocent black children and teenagers — alienating law enforcement families across the country and insulting every minority cop to boot.

The backlash against that ad apparently didn't faze Protest & Grumble's activist zealots. Once again, industry marketers are proving they're not satisfied with selling useful products people want and need. No, they're hell-bent on exploiting successful businesses to cram odious politics down consumers' throats.

Like many Silicon Valley giants (hello, Facebook and Twitter) and SJW-hijacked sports enterprises (hello, NFL and ESPN), Gillette is now openly discriminating against its consumers-turned-critics to curry political favor with the #MeToo movement. Savvy social media observers caught the company throttling negative comments and dislikes on its YouTube video. They can manipulate likes and de-platform dissenters. But they won't be able to disguise the bloodletting effect of toxic sanctimony on their bottom line.

Falling on your virtue-signaling blade may win you awards and headlines, but ultimately, it's a fatal proposition.

SOURCE






Christian Baker Jack Phillips’ New Legal Battle with Colorado Is a Matter of Fairness

Most of us understand the importance of fairness early in life. Whether it’s an umpire’s call in Little League or a teacher’s grading in elementary school, we all intuitively know that fairness is a big deal.

But fairness perhaps is no more important than when our rights are in the hands of courts or other government tribunals. It’s there that we expect not only actual fairness but the appearance of fairness.

That seems reasonable enough. Now imagine that your freedom was on the line. You spent decades building your career, and the government threatens to take it away because of how you practice your faith.

You’re confident in your arguments, but your case is placed before a court that the highest court in the land just said was hostile to your beliefs. You wouldn’t feel very good about your chances, would you? The assurance of fairness would be missing. The legitimacy of the whole process is called into question.

“No worries,” the court tells you, “we have some new judges since we punished you a few years ago.”

That’s supposed to make you feel better, but you dig a little deeper and find that the current judges opposed your appeal in the earlier case. “Well, that’s not a good sign,” you think, but you try to stay optimistic.

Then you learn that the old and new judges alike were selected by the same person. And his selection pool included many judges with ties to an advocacy group that firmly opposed you in your first case. Not feeling too hopeful at this point, huh?

If all this weren’t bad enough, you finally learn that one of the current judges called you a “hater.” Would you believe that you have a fair shot at justice? Not a chance.

But that’s exactly what is happening to Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop. It’s not what you’d consider a picture of justice in action.

The state of Colorado, through the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, an administrative agency that operates as part prosecutor and part jury, punished Phillips a few years ago.

His crime? He could not in good conscience design a wedding cake celebrating a same-sex marriage. He offered to sell the same-sex couple anything else in his shop or to create a different cake for them, but that wasn’t enough for the state of Colorado.

For six years, Phillips defended himself. And just when he began to wonder if all was lost, the Supreme Court intervened this past June and condemned the Colorado Civil Rights Commission for acting with “impermissible hostility” toward his faith.

That hostility consisted in large part of the commission’s unequal treatment of Phillips. While it allowed other bakeries and cake shops like his to refuse to make cakes with religious messages opposing same-sex marriage, it punished Phillips for declining to create a cake celebrating same-sex marriage.

There’s nothing fair about that.

But the hostility didn’t stop with the discriminatory treatment. It extended to commissioners who made hostile statements about Phillips. One referred to his plea for religious freedom as a “despicable piece of rhetoric.” And another took to Twitter to declare: “Freedom OF religion does NOT mean freedom FOR YOUR religion.”

With this sentiment running rampant on the commission, is it any wonder that less than a month after the Supreme Court denounced the state’s hostility, it was targeting Phillips again?

This time, his supposed crime is declining to create a custom cake with a blue and pink design that the attorney who requested it said would reflect and celebrate a gender transition. But Phillips doesn’t believe that people can choose or change their sex.

So the message of that design was not something he could express through his cake art. But Masterpiece Cakeshop told the attorney that Phillips would be glad to create a different cake if the attorney was interested in that.

Even so, the commission has launched another administrative prosecution against Phillips. Oh, but this time he’ll get a fair process, the state says, because the commissioners who made the hostile comments are gone.

The problem is, the state’s unequal treatment continues. It still allows other cake shops to decline to create cakes that express messages they consider objectionable, but insists on punishing Phillips when he does the same thing. The same unfair treatment that the Supreme Court just condemned is present in this new case.

Colorado’s claim that new commissioners are involved doesn’t begin to tell the half of it. All the current commissioners, except one, represented the state in defending the first order punishing Phillips. So even though they might not have been the ones who initially forced him to give up his wedding business, they are the ones who fought to keep that punishment in place.

Also of note, the same person—former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper—put the past and current commissioners in their positions. And one of the governor’s favorite groups to draw commissioners from is One Colorado—an outspoken critic of Phillips during his first case.

One of the commissioners presiding over the new case publicly serves with the National LGBTQ Task Force, another group that openly opposed Phillips the first time around.

Any hope for salvaging a semblance of fairness fades to black when a Twitter rant shows that another current commissioner referred to Phillips as a “hater.”

Fairness for Phillips, under these circumstances, is a mirage—a hopeless fantasy.

Anyone who suggests otherwise should honestly ask themselves a simple question: “Would you feel confident in the neutrality of those decision-makers if they held your fate in their hands?”

To ask the question is to answer it.

So no matter what you think about Phillips, his religious beliefs, or his desire to live them out in the public square, I hope we all can agree that he is entitled to something we’ve all sought since our earliest years—fairness. He can’t get that before this commission, a biased government agency that has targeted him for years.

Because of that, Phillips filed a lawsuit against Colorado in federal court through his attorneys with Alliance Defending Freedom, seeking to stop the state’s renewed efforts to punish him. The federal court saw enough of the problems to deny the state’s request to dismiss the suit.

State officials’ ongoing “disparate treatment” of Phillips reveals their “hostility towards Phillips, which is sufficient to establish they are pursuing the discrimination charges against Phillips in bad faith, motivated by Phillips’… religion … ,” the court wrote in its order Jan. 4.

Jack Phillips serves all customers, and he is even happy to serve the attorney who lodged the complaint against him. But he doesn’t create custom cakes that express messages or celebrate events in conflict with his deeply held beliefs.

Because he can’t get a fair shake before the state commission, he deserves to pursue—and ultimately win—his case in federal court. That will finally free him to live his life according to his beliefs, free from government coercion, just as the First Amendment promises.

SOURCE






Part-Aboriginal journalist says Australia Day reminds her that her sisters and mother are 'more likely to get raped' than are white Australians

She is perfectly right.  They are more likely to get raped BY OTHER ABORIGINES.  The incidence of crimes against women in Aboriginal communities is colossal.  Most domestic violence in Australia traces to Aboriginal communities

The woman is just a Leftist grievance-monger.  She has so little Aboriginal ancestry that no-one would take her for one.  She has no Aboriginal features at all




The network's new entertainment reporter weighed in on the debate surrounding the divisive public holiday while appearing on the Today show on Thursday, starting a fiery conversation by saying Australia is 'the best country in the world, no doubt'. 

'But I can't separate the 26th of January from the fact that my brothers are more likely to go to jail than school, or that my little sisters and my mum are more likely to be beaten and raped than anyone else's sisters or mum,' she said.

'And that started from that day. For me it's a difficult day and I don't want to celebrate it. Any other day of the year I will tie an Australian flag around my neck and run through the streets with anyone else.'

Ms Boney's comments were challenged by Today sports presenter Tony Jones, who asked: 'But why should any other day be different to the January 26?'

'Because that's the day that it changed for us. That's sort of the beginning of what some people would say is the end. That's the turning point,' Ms Boney replied.

'I don't want to tell anyone what they should be doing. [But] my view is move it to the day of federation - chuck on another public holiday, or just celebrate it on another day. But I think a day that suits more people is probably going to be more uniting.' 

Today co-host Georgie Gardner then pointed to Indigenous communities living without electricity and running water, in 'horrific third world conditions'.

Mr Jones responded: 'I don't doubt that whatsoever. But I'm sorry, we do see white Australians in similar situations - we do see kids going to school with lunch - without a school uniform.' 

Ms Boney, 31, interjected and argued that 'statistics tell us our lives are harder.'  

'That's not me making it up or saying feel sorry for me, because I don't want anyone to feel sorry to me. What I'm talking to are the statistics,' she said.

'That's what I said to you about my brother's being more likely to go to jail - our lives being harder. For it to be a ''us and them'' thing, I think that's why we are talking about it changing.'

Deborah Knight applauded the panel for having a 'grown up conversation' about the issue, before Ms Gardner thanked Ms Boney for her insight.

The discussion sparked a fierce debate among viewers, with many suggesting changing the date wouldn't improve the lives of Indigenous Australians.

'Seriously stupid by you today,' former Liberal MP Dennis Jensen wrote to Ms Boney in a since deleted tweet. 'Seriously, neither schools nor gaols existed prior settlement. And as for violence and rape only starting with settlement... speak to anthropologists about Indigenous violence pre-settlement, it was endemic.' 

Another viewer said: 'I don't see that changing the date will have any affect on aboriginal men going to jail or aboriginal women being raped. 'These are terrible acts and I wish things were different but they are not connected to January 26.'

Another asked: 'How will changing the date help her brothers and sisters?'

Others praised Ms Boney and suggested Australia was 'comfortably racist'. 'Brooke Boney smashing it as usual on a hard to talk about topic. Best thing to happen to the Today show,' one noted.

'Brooke just made more sense than anyone else I’ve heard talk about this issue. Maybe I could be persuaded to change my view,' another said.

SOURCE 

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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17 January, 2018

Australian psychologists are down on "Traditional Masculinity" too

The most substantial piece of evidence from Australia for the criticisms is the "Man Box" study mentioned below.  It is a colourfully presented "report", not a refereed academic journal article.  And that shows.  It is not as bad as some such reports in that some care was taken with the sampling and conventional statistical significance was observed but it is basically crap.  Let me say in detail why:

For a start, no factor analysis of the questions asked is offered.  So is there in fact such a thing as a "man box"?  We do not know.  A strong first eigenvector would have reassured us but we are not told of one.  I once did a survey of allegedly female attitudes (The BSRI) which found the attitudes concerned not to be characteristic of Australian females.  They were not sex-polarized at all. So are we sure that the man box attitudes are in fact characteristic of Australian male attitudes?  We cannot assume it. Were there similar attitudes among women?

And including the man box questions within a larger survey was not done.  Doing so might have revealed that the questions had a larger identity.  For instance, many of the questions seem to me to be rather like assertiveness questions, and assertiveness is usually praised.  There certainly should have been some attempt to distinguish the "bad" man box questions from assertiveness.   Could some man box attitudes be good?

And the selection of man box attitudes was also tendentious.  Traditional male attitudes do for instance include courtesy towards women.  To this day I hold car doors open for women but that is only a trivial thing.  There is also a strong traditional male inhibition against hitting women, for instance.  Feminists are much concerned about domestic violence so should they encourage traditional male attitudes of courtesy and restraint towards women?  Nothing like that was examined in the survey, funnily enough.

And what about the traditional male attitude that self-sacrifice is noble?  What about the times when men have sacrificed themselves to save women -- in an emergency situation such as a sinking ship?  Is that noble or foolish?  Sane women would hope it is noble but there is no mention of such nobility in the man box.  The whole conception of the man box is thoroughly bigoted from the get-go.

But the most deplorable omission in the research is a complete failure to apply any demographic controls.  They apparently had demographic data but did not use it to segment their sample.  One does wonder why.  Were the results of such segmentation too embarrassing?  Were man box attitudes almost exclusively working class for instance?  From my own extensive background in survey research, I suspect it.  I always looked at demographic correlates of the attitudes I examined and social class variables were often significant.

And one social class variable that they would have avoided studying at all costs is the dreaded IQ.  Yet IQ is powerfully correlated with an amazing array of other variables.  In this case it could even explain some male/female differences. Why, for instance, do men on average die earlier than women?  The research below says it is because of their bad male attitudes but there is another explanation. Male IQ is more variable than female IQ.  There are more brilliant males but also more spectacularly dumb males.  And, for various reasons, IQ is significantly correlated with health.  So it is likely that most of the males who die young were simply dumb.  They did more silly and dangerous things, for instance.

All in all the report is just a piece of feminist propaganda designed to fool the general public.  I am guessing that they had no expectation that it might come under the scrutiny of an experienced survey researcher



Traditional masculinity has been labelled “harmful” in a major move by a health body, linked with high rates of suicide and violence.

The American Psychological Association released a report last week, citing more than 40 years of research on the issue of “masculine ideology” — a step praised by Australian experts.

“Traditional masculinity ideology has been shown to limit males’ psychological development, constrain their behaviour, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict and negatively influence mental health and physical health,” it said.

Increasingly referred to as “toxic masculinity”, traditional ideals surrounding manhood are usually toughness, aggression, a suppression of emotion, dominance and stoicism.

Queensland University of Technology sociologist Michael Flood said some of the ways boys are raised can have “significant costs” for the community.

Across the country today, an estimated six men will take their own lives — three times the number of women to die by suicide.

“There’s growing recognition that norms of masculinity in many ways are limiting for men themselves,” Dr Flood told news.com.au.

“Going along with traditional masculine beliefs increases the risk of suicide — there have been studies to indicate that. If you think being a man means not asking for help or not showing pain, being a John Wayne character and going it alone, you can’t cope when things are hard.”

Traditional masculinity has a place in a number of scenarios, Dr Flood said, where a number of those qualities can be very useful. “Being tough and stoic are exactly the qualities you need if you’re fighting a fire or something like that, but once it’s over, you need other qualities,” he said.

“Some of those men (without) are poorer at some of the qualities that many people recognise are important in contemporary relationships — communication, emotional expression.”

There’s growing recognition in the fields of men’s mental health, education and the prevention of violence against women and children that “the norms of masculinity” can be harmful.

“Unless we tackle this, we’ll continue to see large numbers of men turning up in hospitals, being assaulted, committing suicide, and suffering in silence and so on,” Dr Flood said.

Criticisms from some segments of the community that the discussion about toxic masculinity is an attack on men are unfounded, he said.

“We need to distinguish between men and masculinity. The attack on the narrow messaging is not an attack on men. This is driven by a concern for men.”

Dr Flood was involved in the groundbreaking Man Box study last year, which found that young Australian men who oversubscribe to traditional notion of masculinity had poorer health and wellbeing outcomes.

“We also found that many of them have poorer relationships with others and were more likely to be involved in violence,” he said.

Of those surveyed — a cohort of 1000 men aged 18 to 30 — 69 per cent felt society expected them to act strong and 56 per cent felt being a man meant never saying no to sex.

Another 36 per cent agreed that society pressures them to shun friendships with gay men and 38 per cent thought boys shouldn’t learn how to cook and clean.

SOURCE 






I’m so sick of this war on masculinity and I’m not alone - with their pathetic man-hating ad, Gillette have just destroyed their  brand

Piers Morgan

Yesterday, the American Psychological Association released a set of guidelines that condemned traditional masculinity as ‘harmful.’

Specifically, it stated that male traits like ‘stoicism’, ‘competitiveness’, ‘achievement’, ‘eschewal of the appearance of weakness’, ‘adventure’, and ‘risk’ are bad and should be expunged.

I literally choked on my bacon-and-sausage sandwich (my contribution to Veganuary) when I read this absurd load of PC-crazed bilge.

It’s basically saying that it’s wrong, and harmful, to be masculine, to be a man.

Not having it: Instead of saying 'boys will be boys,' a dad stops his son from fighting with another little boy     +3
It’s been a very bad week for men. First the American Psychological Association released a set of guidelines that condemned traditional masculinity. Then came this dreadful, virtue signalling Gillette ad

As David French, a writer for the National Review, put it in his withering response to the report: ‘The assault on traditional masculinity – while liberating to men who don’t fit traditional norms – is itself harmful to the millions of young men who seek to be physically and mentally tough, to rise to challenges, and demonstrate leadership under pressure. The assault on traditional masculinity is an assault on their very natures. Are boys disproportionately adventurous? Are they risk-takers? Do they feel a need to be strong? Do they often by default reject stereotypically ‘feminine’ characteristics? Yes, yes, yes and yes.’

Exactly.

I’ve got three sons and a daughter. My siblings have eight girls and a boy between them. So I’ve had plenty of experience watching all 13 of these children (their ages range from two to 25) grow up.

And here’s a cast-iron fact for you: girls are very different to boys. They think differently, behave differently, dress differently, emote differently, and have markedly different characteristics.

Anyone who’s actually had kids knows this. Yet somehow, it’s become offensive to say it out loud.

The incessant poisonous war on gender has culminated in the very word ‘man’ being decried as an abusive term, to the extent that Princeton University actually issued a ridiculous four-page memo instructing students to only use gender-neutral language.

Even the word ‘mankind’ had to be replaced by ‘humankind’.  I’m not joking: Princeton literally wanted to end mankind.

But it turns out that the American Psychological Association’s disgraceful report wasn’t even the worst attack on men this week. No, that inglorious honour falls to razor company Gillette.

For 30 years, the company has used the tagline ‘The best a man can get’ to persuade people like me to part with large sums of money for their expensive shaving blades and foam.

Its commercials have unashamedly celebrated men and masculinity. You watch them and feel good about being male.

Not just because they make you aspire to be a winner and successful achiever, but because they also encourage you to be a good father, son, husband and friend.

As a result of this consistently upbeat and positive marketing style, Gillette has grown into the most successful razor firm in history, generating annual sales of $6 billion a year.

I’ve bought Gillette products for three decades. In fact, only yesterday I spent over $150 stocking up on its latest range of Gillette blades and foam.

I didn’t do so because their stuff is any better than their main competitors. I’ve tried them all and it’s not. I did so because I like Gillette’s brand and what I thought it stood for, and the company’s never done anything to p*ss me off.

Then I saw its new commercial, a short film entitled ‘Believe’, which has a new tagline: ‘The best men can be’.

And I suddenly realised Gillette isn’t the brand I thought it was at all. Gone is the celebration of men.

In its place is an ugly, vindictive two-minute homage to everything that’s bad about men and masculinity.

The film asks ‘Is this the best a man can get’ before flashing up images alluding to sexual harassment, sexist behaviour, the #MeToo movement, bullying and toxic masculinity.

Interspersed is a patronising series of educational visual entreaties about what men should in various unpleasant situations.

The subliminal message is clear: men, ALL men, are bad, shameful people who need to be directed in how to be better people. It’s one of the most pathetic, virtue-signalling things I’ve ever endured watching.

Gillette said the purpose of the ad was to urge men to hold each other ‘accountable’ for bad behaviour.

Right, because the one thing that’s not happening right now in the world is men being held accountable for bad behaviour!

It’s one of the most pathetic, virtue-signalling things I’ve ever endured watching. The ad shows one man stopping his friend as he catcalls a woman who is walking by

Jeez, it’s hard to think of a single minute of any day where men aren’t being summarily hung, drawn and quartered somewhere for alleged bad behaviour – their careers and lives destroyed.

Not in most cases through due process in a court of law, but often on the mere say-so of a Facebook post by an angry ex-girlfriend making allegations that may or may not be true.

I don’t seek to diminish the importance of the #MeToo campaign which has shone an important and long overdue light on completely unacceptable sexual harassment, bullying and abuse.

But why should all men be tarred with the same monstrous brush in the way this Gillette campaign sets out to do?

If I made a commercial aimed at female customers predicated on the generalised notion that women are liars, cheats, psychopaths and murderers (such women exist: I’ve interviewed many of them for my Killer Women crime series) and so every woman has to be taught how not to be those things, all hell would break loose and rightly so.

As always with this kind of furore, the joy of radical feminists on social media at such man-hating nonsense is only matched by the pitiful hypocrisy of certain men racing to virtue-signal their support for them and lambast any man like me who objects.

To sum up this hypocrisy, I received a tweet today from a man named Jeffrey Reddick.

‘Gillette isn’t saying men and masculinity are bad,’ he wrote. ‘Toxic masculinity is when we teach boys that real men don’t cry. Real men don’t show fear. Real men don’t lose. Real men take what they want. Real men solve problems with their fists. It is toxic and it damages men and women.’

Fine words from a man desperate for women to think he’s on THEIR side against supposedly horrible toxic masculine men like ME.

Well yes, until you realise this is the same Jeffrey Reddick who boasts on his Twitter profile that he makes ‘scary movies’.

Oh, he certainly does! Jeffrey created the hugely successful Final Destination horror franchise, making himself a very rich man by shamelessly and gratuitously glorifying the slashing, stabbing, shooting, incineration, strangulation and dismemberment of myriad women.

I wonder if that’s what Jeffrey thinks ‘real men’ should be doing to cement their caring, sharing, sensitive, female-friendly credentials?

He’s not the biggest hypocrite here, though. There’s only one thing Gillette really wants to achieve with this new campaign, and that’s to emasculate the very men it has spent 30 years persuading to be masculine.

As one male customer’s Twitter response, that quickly went viral, said: ‘Just used a Gillette razor blade to cut off my testicles. No more toxic masculinity for me. Thanks Gillette!’

He was not alone in his fury.  Many users expressed their fury at the new commercial

The YouTube version of the ad has been watched millions of times but attracted ten times as many ‘dislikes’ as ‘likes’, fast turning ‘Believe’ into one of the least popular commercials in US history.

Gillette – which believes so much in women’s rights that it has just two women on its board of nine directors - thought it was being clever by tapping into the radical feminist assault on men and masculinity.

In fact, it was being unutterably dumb. By telling its male customers we’re basically all a bunch of uneducated, vile, sexist, harassing predators, they’ve jumped the shark in an unforgivable way.

I for one won’t use Gillette razors again until they withdraw this terrible commercial and formally apologise for their man-hating bullsh*t. I suspect I am not alone.

SOURCE







Australia Day SHOULD be on January 26: Nearly 80 per cent of voters are against changing the date because of Aboriginal sensitivities

Leftist agitators are trying to destroy a patriotic holiday but the people are not having it

An overwhelming majority of Australians continue to reject calls for the country's national day to be moved from January 26, according to new polls.

Polling commissioned by the Institute of Public Affairs, a conservative think-tank, showed just 10 per cent of 1,000 people surveyed want to change the date of Australia Day.

Young Australians were even less welcoming to the idea of moving the date from January 26, which many indigenous Australians view as Invasion Day.   

'Only eight per cent of young people between the ages of 18 and 24 say Australia Day should not be celebrated on 26 January,' the IPA's Dr Bella d'Abrera said.

'[It] proves that despite the media and political left narrative, young people are not drawn to the divisive argument of opposing our national day.'

A separate poll of 1,659 people, conducted by conservative lobby group Advance Australia, found 78 per cent of those surveyed were proud to celebrate Australia Day on January 26.

'The results are in - January 26 is not a day for division and protest, but rather a day for all Australians to celebrate,' the group's National Director, Gerard Benedet, said.

Ten days out from Australia Day, the Greens have offered to host citizenship ceremonies on behalf of local councils who refuse to hold events on January 26 out of respect for indigenous people.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison plans to force councils to hold ceremonies on Australia Day and enforce a strict dress code at official events in an attempt to preserve the date.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has declared he will never move the date of Australia Day if he becomes prime minister. Mr Shorten also said he had no desire to be the 'fashion police' telling people what they could wear at citizenship ceremonies.

'I just think we've got to leave the politics alone, catch up with our family and friends, and on Australia Day my wish is for all Australians to realise what a great country we live in,' he told the Nine Network on Wednesday.

The opposition leader refused to buy into the Greens' idea on citizenship ceremonies. 'Some days I'd like to put the Greens with Tony Abbott and a few of the right-wing in the Liberal Party in the same room, tell them to sort it out, and the rest of us can just get on and cook a snag on the barbie,' Mr Shorten said.

'What happens in Australian politics is sometimes the extremes - because they say radical things - grab a headline.  'I'm not going to get distracted by that - the Greens can say or do what they want - Labor is not going to go down that path.

'We're not going to have big political debates about the day of Australia Day.'

Health Minister Greg Hunt is confident the vast majority of people support Australia Day. 'It celebrates what we are as a contemporary nation and this game that's played out every year is simply a diversion and self-serving,' Mr Hunt said.  'Australia Day is about celebrating a nation that is a multi-ethnic success, with all of the challenges of any country.'

Many indigenous people find it offensive the date their ancestors lost their sovereignty to British colonialists is celebrated with a public holiday.

SOURCE 






End Violence Against Everyone

An email from Australian campaigner Bettina Arndt, who points out that men as well as women are often targets of domestic violence -- which makes her a target of feminist rage, in their usual irrational way

I’m launching a campaign to urge the government to take an evidence-based approach to family violence. To Stop Violence Against Everybody, not just women. To respect everyone, not just women.

Amazingly, this follows a request from key people in the Federal Government for evidence regarding the most effective approaches to tackling this important social issue.

The big news is feminist’s huge cash cow is facing a set-back. When I was speaking in Parliament House late last year, I learnt that the 100 million-dollar domestic funding package introduced four years ago by Malcolm Turnbull is about to run out. Naturally feminists are in a lather lobbying the government for the funding to continue.

Government ministers and bureaucrats usually only ever hear from one side – namely from the huge domestic violence industry which is using the last of their funding to bully politicians into submission.

But now we have a chance to tell the truth about this issue. To speak out against the feminist dogma suggesting all domestic violence is due to gender inequality and lack of respect for women. To talk about the male victims of violence, children growing up cowering from violent mothers. To have people from the coalface, members of the police force, social and community workers tell their experiences regarding the complex two-way violence they witness in most violent homes. Finally, someone is listening.

I’ve made a new video to launch the campaign, exposing the constant stream of male-bashing propaganda which is being inflicted on us by the femocrats. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukaj9lnctw0

It starts with the latest offering from OurWatch, a government body working to end violence against women, which is urging young men to intervene when men voice opinions they claim trigger domestic violence.

There’s an OurWatch video featuring young people chatting in a restaurant. Someone announces her company is hiring a new CEO, a woman. The male villain pipes up: “There’s no way a woman can run such a large company. Women are too emotional to lead.”

It’s a controversial comment, an opinion many people would challenge. But is it now forbidden to even voice such thoughts?

That’s what OurWatch is suggesting. Their website sports a list of items claimed promote disrespect towards women. These include: “thinking or saying women can’t do all the same jobs as men.” According to OurWatch, we are not even allowed to think that women can’t do the same jobs as men.

So here we have an organisation using domestic violence as an excuse to indulge in social engineering, encouraging us to denounce anyone who challenges feminist dogma. And spending vast amounts of our money in the process. OurWatch receives over 6 million a year in government grants and spends 1.3 million annually on such dubious advertising campaigns.

OurWatch is only one of many government-funded bodies which has been happily living off Malcolm Turnbull’s funding, promoting his favoured myth that domestic violence is all about respect for women. 

My video includes some of the evidence showing causes of domestic violence are far more complex, such as the famous Partner Abuse State of Knowledge project, (PASK), which reviewed over 1700 scientific papers and concluded a large range of factors contribute to domestic violence, including mental illness, drug and alcohol abuse, poverty, conflicted relationships, being exposed to abuse or violence as a child. Most family violence was found to be two-way, involving female as well as male perpetrators.

Gender inequality is simply not a relevant factor in domestic violence in egalitarian countries like Australia. The underlying basis of the massive government expenditure on domestic violence is totally misguided.

So, now’s the time for all of you to step up and help me get these messages through to our government. I’m asking people to sign a petition urging the government to take an evidence-based approach, tackling proven causes like alcohol-related violence instead of simply promoting more feminist dogma.

Via email [bettina@bettinaarndt.com.au]

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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16 January, 2019

The PC commissars vs. Bryan Cranston

Jeff Jacoby was at this pulpit last year -- defending the casting of Scarlett Johansson as a tranny. I don't wholly agree with him, however.  I agree that it should not be a political issue.  I think casting should be based soley on the actor's ability to portray the role and, in most cases, that should mean that a  black would be best at portraying blacks, women should be best at playing women etc.  To say that anyone can play any part is just another instance of the stupid Leftist  dogma that all men are equal

A memorable TV commercial for Vicks cough syrup in the 1980s opened with soap-opera actor Peter Bergman, known to millions of "All My Children" fans as Dr. Cliff Warner, telling viewers: "I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV."

Bryan Cranston isn't a quadriplegic, but he plays one in a new movie, and that seems to have put a bunch of people's noses out of joint. Cranston, who stars in "The Upside," has been taking flak for accepting the role of Phillip Lacasse, a billionaire left paralyzed after a paragliding accident. Cranston's detractors are offended that an actor who isn't really disabled would have the effrontery to portray one on the screen, instead of declining the job so the part could be played by an actor who actually is paralyzed.

An irrational objection? Vice Media doesn't think so. On its website Thursday it blasted the actor in a piece headlined "Bryan Cranston Advocated for Disabled Actors While Taking a Role from One." Though Cranston has been outspoken in urging Hollywood to employ more actors with disabilities, Vice dismissed him as a hypocrite: "His decision to play Lacasse," it intoned, "has also prevented a lesser-known disabled actor from getting the opportunity to play the role and gain celebrity."

This critique has been bubbling up for a while. When "The Upside" was making the rounds of film festivals, the respected Ruderman Family Foundation, which promotes the inclusion of people with disabilities, censured the casting of an able-bodied actor to play a paralyzed character as "highly problematic" and "discrimination." Dominick Evans, a filmmaker and activist who suffers from spinal muscular atrophy, chided Cranston for "tak[ing] economic opportunities away from disabled actors who work on average five days a year." As someone who uses a wheelchair, tweeted Evans last week, "I could never play Bryan Cranston, so why the hell can he play someone like me?!"

The answer, of course, is: because that's what actors do. They play parts. They depict characters. They portray men and women (or, for that matter, amphibians and robots and monsters) whose personalities, experiences, and characteristics may be entirely alien to their own. The greatest actors are those whose performances are so believable and three-dimensional, so intuitive and perceptive, that those who see them forget they are watching an actor. As one theater critic, Susannah Clapp of the Observer, has put it, the most superb actors are those "who appear not to perform but transmit."

Identity politics and the entitlement mindset already infect so much of contemporary culture, from law to academia to the arts. Perhaps it was inevitable that, sooner or later, they would undermine the acting profession. Scarlett Johansson came under fire last year when she agreed to star in "Rub & Tug," a film about a transgender brothel owner, Dante Gill. Tilda Swinton was blasted for playing the Ancient One in "Doctor Strange," a role adapted from a character that was Asian in the original Marvel comic. Disney has been condemned for picking Jack Whitehall, a straight actor, to play a "campy gay man" in the adventure comedy "Jungle Cruise." Latina magazine rebuked moviemakers for filling Hispanic roles in at least 13 movies with non-Hispanic actors.

The likely effect of such criticism will be to kill movies before they can be made or to browbeat actors into disqualifying themselves from whole categories of scripts. The backlash against Johansson prompted her to give up the Gill role, which may mean the film is scrapped altogether. Darren Criss (who won Emmy and Golden Globe awards for his TV portrayal of gay killer Andrew Cunanan) announced in December that he will no longer play LGBT characters because he doesn't to be "another straight boy taking a gay man's role."

Hypersensitivity and the assault on cultural appropriation have been wreaking havoc in contexts as varied as art exhibits, burrito shops, fashion shows, and musical performances. Their chilling effect on college campuses has been especially notorious. But those who wax wroth when actors play characters of a race, sexuality, or body type that doesn't match their own aren't merely challenging particular casting decisions. They are attacking the idea of acting itself.

To insist that only actors who are X be tapped to play characters who are X is to insist that acting can never be more than skin deep. It is to declare that the extraordinary artistry and talent of great actors — their power to embody a role and bring it to life — must be restricted at all times to rigid classifications of race, gender, and whatever other categories the commissars of political correctness deem inviolable. It is to tell performers to stay in their own narrow lanes, to stick to characters just like themselves, and under no circumstances to transmit experiences and truths that they don't know from their own lives.

"I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV" wasn't just an advertising trope. It expressed, in a sense, the raison d'etre of the dramatic arts. Bryan Cranston wasn't a crystal-meth lord in real life, but he played one brilliantly in "Breaking Bad." He isn't a quadriplegic, either. Why should anyone want that to keep him from doing his job?

SOURCE






State Dep't Approved 8,482 Child Bride Requests

This is a disgrace.  That there should be one law for all goes right back to the Torah.  The USA should stand foursquare against any recognition of child brides

Between 2007 and 2017, the U.S. State Department approved 8,482 child bride requests, adults seeking to bring into the country a minor spouse or fiance and minors petitioning to bring in an adult spouse or fiance from abroad, according to the Associated Press. In addition, the U.S. government approved 204 requests by minors to bring in their minor spouses/fiances.

"In nearly all the cases, the girls were the younger person in the relationship," reported the AP.  "In 149 instances, the adult was older than 40, and in 28 cases the adult was over 50...."

Some of the examples cited included, "In 2011, immigration officials approved a 14-year-old's petition for a 48-year-old spouse in Jamaica. A petition from a 71-year-old man was approved in 2013 for his 17-year-old wife in Guatemala."

"The country where most requests came from was Mexico, followed by Pakistan, Jordan, the Dominican Republic and Yemen," said the AP.  "Middle Eastern nationals had the highest percentage of overall approved petitions."

The information was initally gathered by the Senate Homeland Security Committee after a request to the State Department was made in 2017.

"It indicates a problem," said Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.).  In a letter, Johnson and his former colleague, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) said, "Our immigration system may unintentionally shield the abuse of women and children."

As the report indicates, these child bride requests apparently are legal because most states allow 16- and 17-year olds to marry with parental permission. Also, children under age 16 can marry in New York, Virginia, and Maryland, if they have court permission.

Fraidy Reiss, who fights against coerced marriage through the group Unchained at Last, told the AP that data from New Jersey show that "nearly 4,000 minors, mostly girls, were married in the state from 1995 to 2012, including 178 who were under 15."

The report also noted the case of Naila Amin, who is now 29 but was 13 and living in Pakistan when she was forcibly married to her first cousin, Tariq, who was 26. Amin was bethrothed to Tariq when she was 8 years old and he was 21.

"My passport ruined my life," Amin, who has dual U.S. and Pakistani citizenship, told the AP. "People die to come to America. I was a passport to him. They all wanted him here, and that was the way to do it."

"I was a child," she said. "Why weren't any flags raised? Whoever was processing this application, they don't look at it? They don't think?"

SOURCE







Traditional Masculinity Is 'Harmful' — Who Knew?

Leftists seek to destroy the very foundation of our cultural understanding of gender.

The American Psychological Association recently released its “guidelines” on masculinity and, to put it bluntly, it’s about as insightful as a barrel full of monkeys. Then again, that may be an insult to monkeys, as they instinctively display more intellectual consistency and credibility than does the APA’s condemnation of “traditional masculinity.” At least monkeys don’t dismiss the natural, innate biological differences between the genders as mere “societal constructs.”

In its “first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys,” the APA asserts, “Traditional masculinity ideology has been shown to limit males’ psychological development, constrain their behavior, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict and negatively influence mental health and physical health.” In fact, “traditional masculinity,” which the APA describes as “stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression,” is “on the whole harmful” to men and boys.

Using leftist buzzwords such as “macroaggression, patriarchy, and cisgender” — the latter referring to a person whose sexual “identity” happens to match their biological gender — the APA concludes that “traditional masculinity” is a societal problem. Clearly, the APA is guided by the leftist theory that gender is a nonbinary social construct rather than a binary reality based upon biology. But even at that, one particular gender is just the worst.

For example, the APA alleges, “Although there are differences in masculinity ideologies, there is a particular constellation of standards that have held sway over large segments of the population, including: anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk, and violence. These have been collectively referred to as traditional masculinity ideology.”

After some backlash, however, the APA attempted to “clarify” its assertion with the following statement: “When we report that some aspects of ‘traditional masculinity’ are potentially harmful, we are referring to a belief system held by a few that associates masculinity with extreme behaviors that harm self and others. It is the extreme stereotypical behaviors — not simply being male or a ‘traditional male’ — that may result in negative outcomes.” But extremes were not the basis for the original APA argument; stereotypes were. So this clarification is actually obfuscation.

The fact remains that maleness or masculinity as well as femaleness or femininity share common, easily recognizable expressions in all cultures and societies across the world. In fact, one of the first things noted when an individual from one cultural group enters another are the natural binary expressions of gender. It is a universal reality based upon the reality of human biology.

National Review’s David French notes an obvious contradiction in the culture’s current “diversity” paradigm, writing, “It is interesting that in a world that otherwise teaches boys and girls to ‘be yourself,’ that rule often applies to everyone but the ‘traditional’ male who has traditional male impulses and characteristics. Then, they’re a problem. Then, they’re often deemed toxic. Combine this reality with a new economy that doesn’t naturally favor physical strength and physical courage to the same extent, and it’s easy to see how men struggle.”

The fact is that true masculinity is designed to compliment true femininity. The two are not one and the same, despite the gender-fluid argument the APA now espouses. Nor is “traditional masculinity” harmful to boys. Quite the opposite — they need more of it.

SOURCE






Vegans 'take twice as many sick days' as meat eating colleagues, report says

Vegans take the most sick days off work due to cold, flu and minor ailments, according to a new report.

The study found that they are absent through illness for almost five days a year, which is twice the annual total of the average Briton.

And while the reasons for the high sick-day count are unclear, two-thirds of vegans admitted to taking more time off work due to minor illness in 2018 than in previous years.

In contrast, just half of their meat-eating colleagues reported that they took the same amount of time off as the year before, while one in three said they took less.

The study of 1,000 office workers also revealed that vegans are three times more likely to take a trip to their GP during the cold and flu season in comparison to the average UK adult.

They tend to book 2.6 appointments to see the doctor, in contrast to the national average of just 0.7 visits.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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15 January, 2019

Nationalism doesn’t have to mean exclusion

Some incompetent Leftist philosophy below from Robert Zaretsky, a history professor at the University of Houston. He purports to discuss nationalism but nowhere defines it. If a student had handed that to me as an essay, I would have failed it. He seems quite oblivious that there are at least two major usages of the term -- which might for brevity be called passive and active nationalism.  The active nationalist wants his country to conquer others whereas the passive nationalist just wants his country to be independent and great. Both are patriotic but one is harmless and the other can be a terrible blight on the human race. 

My survey research found that Anglospheric countries such as the USA are mainly populated by passive nationalists for whom patriotism does NOT mean a wish for conquest.  And indeed, despite America's great power, America's only conquests date back to the Progressive era of over 100 years ago.  Leftists can easily transmogrify patriotism into aggressive nationalism -- as Hitler did and as Theodore Roosevelt did to an extent.  In WWII, America in fact waged an ANTI-nationalist war.

The main point of the essay below is derived from the confused theorizing of 18th century German philosopher Johann Gottfried Herder.  Herder and Zaretsky propose the non-sequitur that all nations are different and that therefore we should not compare them.  I would have thought that it is precisely because all nations are different that we SHOULD compare them.  Even the USA has a lot to learn from places like Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Japan.  And if one wants to retire to a place least likely to be degraded by nuclear war, New Zealand is the near-universal choice.

Zaretsky obviously had an aim behind his silliness.  He wanted American nationalists to be passive nationalists, quite oblivious of the fact that they already are.  What a fool!  Leftism rots the mind



SINCE THE FRENCH Revolution, a brilliant cast of ideologies has starred on the world stage, ranging from conservatism to liberalism to communism. Yet the -ism that has been most resilient, and today has become resurgent, is one that modern thinkers dismissed as a walk-on.

Nationalism, the political theorist Isaiah Berlin once observed, was long thought to be an allergic reaction of national consciousness when “held down and forcibly repressed by despotic rulers.” Remove this particular allergen, and the sneezing fit of nationalism would end.

Yet in the 21st century, the sneezing has grown more, not less violent. Indeed, it threatens to tear apart the traditional and constitutional bonds that, ironically, hold nations together. From the Caucasus to the Atlantic, from North to South America and across much of Asia, nationalism has become a chronic global condition. At a rally in October, President Trump declared himself a nationalist and urged followers to use the term, too.

Few people would find the ascendancy of nationalism more surprising, and more depressing, than the man who coined the term. Though largely overlooked today, Johann Gottfried Herder was one of the 18th century’s most original thinkers, a deeply influential German philosopher who left a mark on fields ranging from linguistics to literature and history. He not only invented the term nationalism (“Nationalismus”), but is also widely seen as its greatest champion.

A friend of the great Goethe (who credited Herder with having saved him from dry-as-dust classicism), Herder was born in East Prussia in 1744. The son of devout Lutherans, he never lost his faith in God or Germany. Or, at least, the idea of Germany: Rather than a nation, “Germany” in the 18th century was a dizzying hodgepodge of small states and independent cities which shared little more than a common language.

Language, to Herder, is the very essence of a people. He called upon his fellow Germans to resist what he called the “cancer” of French, which had become the unofficial language of 18th century Europe. “Whoever wants to drive out my language,” Herder once declared, “also wants to rob me of my reason and my way of life, the honor and laws of my people.”

Yet here’s the rub: Herder wrote these words in an essay lambasting efforts by Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II to force the German language on Hungarians and other linguistic minorities living under his rule. The proudly parochial Herder believed that, as Berlin put it, “every activity, situation, historical period and civilization possessed a unique character of its own.” For this reason, to subject a particular people to a foreign language and set of ideas — especially those that, like French, pretended to be universally applicable — was, in effect, an act of cultural genocide.

The sweeping line that opens Herder’s great work, "Ideas About the Philosophy of the History of Mankind", underscores the inclusive nature of his nationalism: “Our earth is a star among stars,” Herder wrote. Just as there is no hierarchy of planets, there is no ranking of peoples. No single measure exists by which cultures and peoples can be judged. More so than any other element of the Enlightenment, Herder rebelled against the belief that a single and universal set of laws applied to the world of men no less than the world of things. Instead, he wrote, a nation’s ways and wisdom, language and lore can be measured only against its own standard.

[Herder was clearly wrong. Nations can be compared using many different standards -- and often are.  Herder may think that nations SHOULD not be compared but that is just his opinion]

Two or three timeless insights follow: First, it is worse than pointless to parade the greatness of one’s nation, for this implies that there is a single standard. Since each and every nation has what Herder called “its own center of gravity,” each and every one is unique.

Second, there is no single form of nationalism. Herder was both a nationalist and a pluralist. He saw no contradiction between the claims of one’s own culture and those of other cultures. And he was especially alive to his own culture’s faults. “Our part of the earth should be called not the wisest, but the most arrogant, aggressive, and money-minded,” he wrote.

Some critics have questioned whether Herder’s kinder and gentler nationalism, which invoked the points of lights illuminating our world, is really different from more virulent forms. A sudden crisis, whether genuine or manufactured, can unleash the darker nature of nationalism.

This year marks the 275th anniversary of Herder’s birth. By its end, we may be in a better position to decide if Herder’s humane vision of humankind turns out to be as fantastic and fictitious as the German folk tales he loved.

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Why some on the left hate white women

In the new tribal leftism, white women who vote Republican are traitors.

Over the past two election cycles, most white women voted for
the Republican Party – albeit by narrow margins. And after both elections, certain segments of the progressive intelligentsia were infuriated by what they perceived to be a betrayal of female solidarity. Some writers on the left have been taking white women to task for voting for an allegedly racist political party, arguing that white women’s votes reveal a desire to preserve white supremacy even when doing so involves also standing up for the patriarchy.

Conor Friedersdorf at the Atlantic insists that these sentiments are not representative of most Democrats – and he is probably right. Still, the fact that articles expressing rancour towards ‘gender traitors’ appear in such outlets as Cosmopolitan and Vogue and the New York Times suggests that the attitude is not entirely marginal. When Treva Lindsey writes at Vox – a hugely popular left publication – that ‘if you’re not voting like a black woman [ie, for progressive Democrats], you are probably on the wrong side of history’, her statement probably resonates with a fair number of left-leaning elites in the US. The animus against white women, then, is worth examining.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, several conservative writers have already denounced the criticism being directed at white women. At National Review, for one, Alexandra DeSanctis argues that the expectation that women are predestined to think and vote a certain way undermines the notion of female autonomy, which ought to be the principle that underlies any serious feminist politics. Even some left-leaning writers have distanced themselves from the resentment against white women. Katie Herzog, for instance, argues that one reason many white women tend to vote Republican is that they are themselves… well… Republicans. She adds that decrying white women as ‘gender traitors’ is unlikely to improve Democrats’ electoral prospects down the line.

In the process, Herzog raises a very interesting question – one that few people in the wars over white women’s voting patterns appear to have asked. ‘Why the hell aren’t [progressive intellectuals] shouting at white men? They vote for Republicans at even higher rates than white women.’

Why indeed? White men do vote Republican by higher margins than white women, so one would expect them to garner even more post-election disdain from progressive writers. That they do not requires some explanation.

Treva Lindsey’s Vox essay is a good place to start. She argues that, ‘Calling out white women’s continued support of conservative politicians isn’t excusing or ignoring white men’s commitment to electing these candidates. It’s an assertion of a profound and perpetual sense of betrayal’ (emphasis mine).

The idea here is that white women, as women, have a vested interest in voting for Democrats; so when they vote for Republicans, they act against their own interests. For Lindsey, white women’s interests are almost wholly determined by their racial and gender identity. White men, therefore, cannot be faulted as much as white women for voting Republican. After all, white men are merely defending their privileges, which is in some way not as reprehensible as what white women are doing: namely, placing their interest in perpetuating white privilege before their interest in dismantling gender oppression.

There are two obvious problems with Lindsey’s formulation. The first is that people bring many considerations to bear when they decide who to vote for. Beyond race and gender, there are also class considerations, geographical influences, religious motivations, political convictions, evaluations about contemporary events, etc. Many of these other factors seem to be more explanatory than gender or race for understanding recent electoral outcomes.

The second obvious problem with Lindsey’s line of thinking is that women’s left-leaning voting patterns are a historically contingent phenomenon – an odd thing for a professor of gender studies to overlook. Women in Western democracies used to be to the right of men. As Professor Miki Caul Kittilson writes, ‘After enfranchisement, women were more politically conservative than men in their ideology, party attachment, and vote choice across democracies’.

Much of this gap is explained through women’s higher religiosity, given that religiosity is often intricately bound up with conservative parties and ideologies. Moreover, Kittilson notes that women in post-communist and developing countries are more conservative than men in those societies. (Presumably these women are not all voting the way they are in order to uphold the patriarchy.) In short, women are not born to be on the left, and it is both empirically wrong and highly presumptuous to pretend that they are.

But there is a final, less obvious flaw with the logic of those who decry white women’s voting patterns on the grounds that white women are gender traitors. Intellectuals of the left have traditionally rooted their demands in universalist principles, seeking to convince everybody to support the left on the simple grounds that the left’s positions are morally correct. A universalist left would not attempt to shame women by telling them, ‘You must vote for us because you are women’; it would instead try to convince them, ‘You must vote for us because we are right’. And it would make the same plea to white men, who, capable of critical reflection as all humans are, would have some basis to be persuaded to endorse leftist causes.

That segments of today’s left have chosen the parochial over the universal is lamentable – even, or especially, for those of us who might not personally identify with the left, but who do think that politics is a matter of promoting the common good rather than the good of select tribal groups.

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What a Case Of Mistaken Identity Tells Us About Race-hysteria in America

Huge racist double-standards

Jazmine Barnes, a 7-year-old black girl, was buried this week in Harris County, Texas. She was fatally shot while sitting in the car with her mother and siblings on the morning of Dec. 30.

Initial reports stated that the shooter was a white man. Those reports led to a national outcry that this was a racially motivated attack. Activists and politicians demanded that the shooting be investigated as a hate crime. But in the days since the shooting, deputies in Harris County have charged two black men in relation to the shooting.

Jazmine Barnes was in a car with her mother and three sisters on Dec. 30 near a Walmart when shots rang out. Her mother was shot in the arm but survived. But Jazmine, who was 7, was shot in the head and died at the scene. The other girls in the car during the shooting said the gunshots came from a red pickup truck driven by a white male. And The New York Times reports that there was another still unsolved shooting in 2017 in the same area that witnesses say was committed by a white man in a Ford pickup.

So that, in combination with a police sketch of the suspect, created a real fear that this was a racially motivated attack.

But we now know that the suspected shooter was black

This week, the police have charged two suspects, Larry Woodruffe, the alleged shooter, and Eric Black Jr., the alleged driver. The police say they think the shooting was a case of mistaken identity. Eric Black and the alleged shooter, they say, were trying to retaliate against someone they had gotten into an argument with earlier, and they misidentified the car Jazmine Barnes was in.

The police said that they believe that both the white male and the red pickup the girls in the car saw were real, but probably belonged to an innocent bystander who sped away during the confusion of the shooting.

In the days after the shooting and before the arrests, Shaun King, an activist who is very prominent on social media, offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the suspect's arrest and helped publicize the police sketch of the presumed white suspect. During that same period, Sheila Jackson Lee, a congresswoman from Houston, called Barnes' killing a hate crime.

If this suspect were identified as black from the beginning, how might that have changed this story?

Crimes with both black victims and black perpetrators tend not to make national news. Just two weeks before Jazmine Barnes was shot, another 7-year-old in Harris County was seriously injured in a drive-by shooting. When these crimes do bubble up to this level, it's usually invoked to wave away concerns around structural racism or police violence — you know, concern-trolling like, "Well, what about black-on-black crime?"

There are sadly a lot of Jazmine Barneses in America, and lots of neighborhood rallies and memorials for slain little kids like her. It's telling that the relatively less common instance is one of a very few conditions in which those deaths would garner national coverage.

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Why holding a door open for a woman could get you sacked for sex harassment

On a visit to the theatre a couple of nights ago, I was standing with a small group of friends when a man came to join us. His shoulders were stooped and his step heavy as he strode across the foyer, frustration oozing from every pore.

'I don't understand the rules any more,' he confessed. 'Everything I say seems to upset people. I told someone at work she had nice shoes on and was warned that it was inappropriate.'

There was a lot of head shaking and murmurs of sympathy as the group – particularly the women – derided the madness of banning compliments for nice shoes.

I decided to offer him my standard response.

'It's simple,' I said. 'You have to ask yourself – would I say this to a rather terrifying cellmate in prison? If not, don't say it to a woman in a professional environment.'

It's not a terribly scientific answer but, since few people are clear about the boundaries of what is appropriate, it works. Or rather, I thought it did.

Because having watched a new BBC documentary due to be screened this week which explores precisely this predicament between men and women in the workplace, my tried and trusted advice no longer seems quite so adequate.

In fact, it has left me petrified for my 18-year-old son, who has yet to enter the world of work.

In the programme, 20 young adults between 18 and 30 are brought together to see whether they understand the rules of behaviour in the workplace. Over two days, they watch a specially written drama telling the story of the working relationship between a man and woman.

The woman is Cat, who arrives on her first day and receives lots of attention from the man, Ryan, who describes himself as her 'mentor'. Both of them are good looking and the workplace is a bar – very relaxed, music playing, drinks being consumed – but it's still work.

And from the moment they meet, Ryan can't resist making subtle digs at Cat. In attempting to teach her to use software for stocktaking purposes, he says: 'When they told me the new duty manager needs help with the stock software, I was like: 'What have you employed her for, then?' But having seen you work, I get it.'

He then leans in slightly too closely over her shoulder at the computer, complimenting Cat on her perfume.

HOW THE MEN SEE IT: 'He is too close, he's leaning over her shoulder. But she doesn't seem to find a problem with it.'

HOW THE WOMEN SEE IT: 'I was shocked Cat didn't have the courage to identify the problem and call it straight away.'

THE LAWYER'S VERDICT: 'Ryan has texted friends about the "fit new duty manager", writing "She wants it mate. She just doesn't know it yet."

Definitely sexual harassment.'

She never tells Ryan of her discomfort. But he is so busy flirting that he fails to teach her how to use the software, instead opting to complete the job himself.

When Cat attempts to intervene to finish the stock order, he dismisses her efforts, remarking that it was 'team work… brains and beauty', reducing her contribution to looking pretty. He's clearly pushing his luck, but is he breaking the law?

The drama continues two weeks later as the pair enjoy after-work drinks on a Friday night, and dancing in a club. Cat, a little worse for wear, is sick and, when Ryan checks on her, he puts his hand on her shoulder then slides it down to her waist. She removes his hand and walks onto the dance floor.

But the nub of the story takes place the following week when Cat, unfamiliar still with the software, messes up a drinks order. Ryan consoles her by asking her to stay on for a drink, and joins her in a taxi home. But he gets out at her stop, and moves in for a kiss – a kiss Cat rejects.

The programme also observes the group of 20 youngsters as they watch the drama play out and reveals how divided they are in their opinions of what's taking place.

Some brush off the entire chain of events as little more than 'banter', while others agreed that the woman should have made her discomfort more clear. At the other end of the spectrum, some – mainly women – feel the man's behaviour is completely out of order.

But the most chilling part of the whole thing – the part which left me fearful for my son and which will undoubtedly shock any parent – is the concluding verdict by the barrister brought in by the programme.

She is unequivocal. There is no ambiguity in any of the scenarios, she states. Each one can be construed, by law, as sexual harassment, defined by statute as any unwanted conduct that has the intention of violating someone's dignity.

Take each scenario in turn and the shocking reality of this is clear.

HOW THE MEN SEE IT: ‘If someone compliments you on your smell, that’s nice. He just said, “That’s nice perfume.”'

HOW THE WOMEN SEE IT: 'If one of my work colleagues had complimented my perfume, I wouldn’t have taken offence. If she found it offensive she should have definitely said something.'

THE LAWYER’S VERDICT: 'The perfume comment is sexual harassment. For example, would he say to a man, you’ve got nice perfume? 'If not, then it’s likely that it’s related to sex.'

Ryan's flirtatious, throwaway remark to Cat – 'brains and beauty' – is sexual harassment. Leaning too close to Cat, touching her waist and commenting on her perfume could likewise potentially lead to a tribunal. All of these things, the barrister points out, violate her dignity and as such could constitute a harassment case.

As I watched the show, with a growing sense of unease, I thought about the man at the theatre who had complimented a colleague's shoes. It turned out that the woman was right: his approval, even if kindly and innocently delivered, was unprofessional and potentially illegal.

As someone who began her career in the breast-groping, bottom-pinching 1990s, I am delighted that the world of work has been transformed. For years, women kept quiet about all manner of abuse so that they could keep their careers on track. That was clearly wrong.

But if things have improved for female workers, there's also more confusion, particularly for men.

Just how are men and women supposed to deal with each other and just what sort of world do we want to see in the future? Will it be a sackable offence to praise a new dress, a suit, a natty tie?

Countless relationships, happy marriages and strong families have started in the workplace. In fact, one 2014 survey suggested that 30 per cent of relationships begin there. Are these to be banned?

And isn't it a little demeaning to suggest that women, who have spent centuries putting men in their place, are incapable of speaking up for themselves from time to time?

I can't help feeling there's something Orwellian in the way we seem determined to police and punish not just sexism and bullying, but normal, human behaviour, too.

As the mother of a son who has just left home, the serious consequences of an innocent mistake now seem terrifyingly real.

I hope, as any parent does, that George will meet the woman of his dreams, have a fantastic social life and enjoy good professional relationships with men and women in whatever career he chooses.

But I now understand the harsh reality of what he and millions of other young men are facing – not just in distant US college campuses, or high-tech 'start ups' in trendy parts of London or Manchester but increasingly in the everyday world.

A couple of colleagues have frightening stories to tell.

One has a son, Richard, aged 21, who works for a bank in London and was given a warning for simply holding a door open for a colleague – an act of chivalry or, at the very least, basic manners in any other generation.

Richard said: 'I saw her coming down the corridor so waited and said, 'After you', allowing her to go through first. Then I went through after her and a man came through behind me.'

Astonishingly, the woman complained to the bank's human resources department that his actions amounted to sexism.

Richard was called into a meeting with HR officials, who told him that opening the door for his colleague had 'infantilised' her, and made her feel 'less'.

'It was all really frightening,' Richard continued. 'I thought I'd lose my job. I got a letter confirming the warning and it said that if I held the door open only for black men, or only for white men, it would be racist, so it was sexist that I held the door only for the woman.

'I told them that I would hold the door for a man as well but they said I hadn't in this instance – I'd treated the woman differently. I learnt a tough lesson.'

Carl, 28, a retail manager in Manchester, has been forced to learn a similar lesson. A couple of years ago, his store took on extra staff before the Christmas rush. One was a woman in her early 20s.

'It's always frenetic and full-on in December,' Carl admits. 'We're a close-knit team anyway but with the music in the store and the increase in shoppers, the camaraderie between us can be described as casual, fun and close-knit. Our guards were down, I suppose.'

Carl was working with the young woman in the changing rooms, moving rails of clothing and emptying boxes, and put his hand out to stop her falling backwards when she had tripped.

'I'm quite a touchy-feely guy,' Carl admits. 'Not in a sexually aggressive way, but I will unthinkingly put my hand on someone's shoulder or their arm to emphasise a point. I do it with my male friends and platonic female friends.

'I didn't gauge my colleague's reaction at the time although, looking back, I can see that she did freeze. But I put that down to her being the new girl, rather than thinking I was totally out of line.'

A fortnight later, he discovered, to his shock, that she had reported him and two other members of staff for inappropriate behaviour. 'I was speechless,' Carl said. 'I didn't know how to react.'

Carl said it 'pulled me up sharp'. 'I really thought about who I was around my colleagues, and in particular her. But I genuinely couldn't see how my behaviour could have been misconstrued. It's the first time any allegations have ever been made against me.

'I had a few sleepless nights afterwards. Since then, the episode has made me re-evaluate what is normal behaviour between adults. Is a friendly gesture not allowed?

Well, no – as the BBC drama highlights. Working lives should not be blighted or undermined by unwanted attention, as the barrister explains on screen. The rules are the rules.

Don't get me wrong, misogynistic abuse can have a devastating effect and must be stamped out.

Take the case of Helen, a shocking real-life case explored by the show. She says: '[My male colleagues] talked about the size of my breasts. They talked about my vagina quite openly. They took a picture of me when I was asleep, graffitied an ejaculating penis on my face, put it on Facebook, put it on the company's social media page.

'I put up with quite a lot I guess. I felt unable to stand up for myself. I knew it was wrong – my instincts were telling me – but I didn't know what to do with it. That was the hardest thing.'

Helen took them to a tribunal and won her case, plus £10,000 in compensation. But facing them in the tribunal was not easy.

'It was insinuated it was wanted, that I enjoyed it and didn't have a problem with it. I felt I couldn't be myself any more because I'm naturally warm and smiley. Then you think: am I leading someone on by just being me?'

Yet the programme also highlights the terrible consequences that a culture of accusation can have, taking the real-life case of Keith, a co-ordinator in a hospital, who was wrongly accused of sexual harassment at work.

Keith, who is openly gay, describes how the allegations emerged after he failed to swap a shift with a co-worker. 'He accused me of touching his bottom 14 times… of saying he had red, sexy lips. 'He accused me of grooming him in the way that I would cook food and bring food for him.

'I was totally dumbfounded by all these accusations. There was an internal investigation. The accusations were proven to be unfounded and I was cleared of all allegations.

'I never, ever thought in a million years that anyone could be so cruel, vicious or vindictive.

'I've never drunk before but I found myself drinking up to a bottle of vodka a day to self-medicate. I was diagnosed with stress-related Type 2 diabetes.'

No wonder the men look sheepish as this revealing experiment draws to a close.

'I'm never going to talk to any of the women at work again, in case I say something wrong,' says one.

'I just don't want to upset anyone, but I don't know how…'

And it's not just them who have been left with questions. Every family in the country has some thinking to do.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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