Reeder on LGBTQ campus activists: ‘They don’t want to debate what a marriage actually is. They want to silence those they cannot answer.’


 

 

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TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, I’d like to take you to a Fox News story out of Georgetown University. A Catholic student group at that university could be stripped of its funding and its ability to meet on campus for its belief in traditional marriage. Love Saxa, a group that advocates marriage between a man and a woman, is under fire from the LGBTQ groups on campus, according to the student newspaper, The Hoya.

Love Saxa’s definition of marriage does not include same-sex couples, as they say they believe that marriage is a conjugal union on every level — emotional, spiritual, physical and mental — directed toward caring for biological children. “To us marriage is much more than commitment of love between two consenting adults.”

The student newspaper then targeted the group in an editorial titled “Defund Intolerance.”

DR. REEDER: What they promoted is marriage and basically affirmed the Roman Catholic view, which the historic Biblical doctrine for thousands of years as the Gospel of Jesus Christ extended from Jerusalem.

As it moved north, south, east and west, it encountered barbarian tribes with barbarian cultures, including barbarian definitions of marriage and family such as bigamy and polygamy. When Christianity came, lives were changed and the structure of marriage and family was changed.

What’s really interesting is, as it was changed, it was then ordered Biblically. We see the ordering of marriage of one man and one woman for one life.

Even, by the way, you see the same trajectory in the Bible, don’t you? That, when sin came into the world, it attacked marriage: there, you have just subsequent to the generation of Cain, and Abel, and Seth, you then have polygamy.

Sin attacks all of God’s creation ordinances and it attacks marriage, and that attacks family and then attacks all of those things that are affirmed by God as sacred and sanctified.

What’s interesting, today, is we have a culture that is descending back into paganism in our so-called “tolerant society,” which tolerates fabrication and mythology in that you call a same-sex relationship, marriage.

Well, by definition, it can’t be marriage. You can call it what you want to, but it’s not marriage, and that’s what this organization said. Marriage is one man, one woman, committed for one life in a conjugal, covenantal, heterosexual, monogamous relationship.

God made the man and the woman to be one. He made them different in order to unite them. Now, we’re equal before God, but we are different. Equality is not interchangeability. Marriage also allows for procreation so monogamous, covenantal, conjugal, heterosexual relationship of one man, one woman, for one life.

Well, that’s what this organization embraces. Guess what? It’s a Roman Catholic University. Guess what the Roman Catholic canons affirm? The historic, Biblical definition of marriage.

Therefore, you have a student organization that is designed to uphold a Roman Catholic tenant, which is a Biblical tenant common to all Biblical Christianity and, now, you have a student group that says you can’t believe that, on this campus, because it is intolerant.

Yes, it is intolerant. For instance, I would uphold the sanctity of life on a Roman Catholic university. I would be intolerant of abortion and I would bring the ideas to bear upon the insidious and undeniable chaos, destruction and violence of the abortion industry. Well, they have done the same thing concerning marriage.

Now, here’s what usually happens: when you can’t match the argument intellectually, what you then do is try to shame the opponent, marginalize the opponent and, if at all possible, silence them because you can’t uphold the debate with them and that’s what is being done here by those who embrace the LGBTQ agenda affirming the same-sex marriage mythology and fabrication.

There is no ability to actually, by definition of what a marriage is, to actually bring into reality a same-sex marriage — a same-sex marriage is not heterosexual, it is not monogamous, and it cannot be conjugal, and it is not established for procreation.

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, let me give you the statement released by the university and get your response to it. The university said, “As a Catholic and Jesuit institution, Georgetown listens deeply and discerningly to the plurality of voices that exist among our students, faculty and staff and is committed to the care of each member of our community.”

It went on to say, “As the students on the Student Activities Commission review the complaint formally submitted by individual students, we encourage all students to follow our community commitment to open dialogue and mutual respect.”

DR. REEDER: What you’re assuring is open dialogue to a group of people who don’t want open dialogue. They don’t want to debate what a marriage actually is. They want to silence those they cannot answer.

I am sure that it’s appropriate to say, “Well, we respect everybody here and their civil rights, etc., etc.,” and that certainly ought to be done, but this doesn’t require a lot of thought. This just very clearly states, “We’re Roman Catholic. We have certain tenets and certain things that we embrace. One of those things that we embrace is marriage. We expect our priests to teach it and we expect our communicants to embrace it.

Therefore, in an educational institution that we support through the Jesuit order, there is no reason for us to outlaw an organization that upholds one of our canon tenets and one of our statements of dogma concerning what marriage is.

On the contrary, we would see that as a success in our educational enterprise that we have students that embrace a Biblical view of marriage and have moved into the public square to contend for it and to defend it in the midst of this intellectual and moral chaos surrounding quote/unquote, ‘same-sex marriage,’ which is a legal, and biological and functional fabrication.

And it is a culturally destructive movement within society because it destroys the one basic unit of society, the family rooted in a marriage, so that children all have the opportunity to have a father and a mother because the marriage from which they came had a husband and a wife.”

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, what does this say about these larger institutions that sometimes can lose their moral bearings? This is a university that’s been around for a number of years and, certainly, it’s going to continue to embrace the Catholic dogma of traditional marriage and, yet, we find that, perhaps, they need some accountability, too.

DR. REEDER: Tom, I know you’ve heard the term “entropy.” That’s the second law of thermodynamics that, when things are left alone, they run down. Well, they not only run down, they run away spiritually.

A denomination, or a movement or a church can have wonderful agencies and wonderful ministries in place but, if they’re left alone and not properly guided, and not properly governed, and not properly held accountable, they can run off.

Now, the Roman Catholic Church, the bishops and their structure, are going to have to take a look at these questions: How does Georgetown University deal with this issue? Will they be consistent to the Georgetown University tenets? Your accountability is not to the students that are bringing this charge and that

The university’s accountability is not to the students that are bringing this charge and that are attempting to silence those who hold to what we believe. The accountability is to the church and they may say, ‘If you don’t uphold what we say we believe, then this university cannot be a part of the Roman Catholic Church.’

I applaud the students who are contending for a Biblical view of marriage and, of course, I am hoping that the university defends the students that are being consistent with the tenets of the university concerning marriage.

But here’s what I do know: we’ve got to get out there with the Gospel of saving grace in Christ because the problem here is that people are looking for salvation and meaning in life by embracing a cultural revolution that stands in opposition to the glory of God. And, in reality, that salvation that is sought in opposition to the glory of God only brings the demise of the individual and the culture.

Contend for the truth in the public square. God will use you not only for redeeming grace, but also common grace; redeeming grace that transforms sinner and common grace that restrains sin in society.

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin. Jessica is editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

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11 hours ago

Conservatives should stop using the phrase ‘fake news’

Liberals have overused the word “racist” so much that the adjective now lacks any commonly agreed upon definition, and that’s a shame because we need words — especially that word — to mean something.

Conservatives have now done the same thing with the phrase “fake news.”

And we need to stop.

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Are there racists? Of course, and where they are found, the label should indeed apply. The Alt-Right’s Richard Spencer is a racist. So is Jared Taylor.

But you’re not a racist if you believe our country should have borders. Or if you support law enforcement. Or if you believe in school choice.

Calling you a racist for supporting those things is the left’s attempt at shutting off debate and banishing those who advocate for such ideas.

Is there fake news? Of course, and just like the word “racist,” when it’s found, the label should apply. Dan Rather’s infamous story about George W. Bush’s record in the Air National Guard is a perfect example. It wasn’t true.

But news isn’t fake if it’s simply something you don’t like or would rather not hear. Or if it challenges your perspectives. Or if it, heaven forbid, says something unflattering about the president.

A racist is someone who actually hates people of another color and wishes them ill. Most people called ‘racist’ today are nothing of the sort.

Fake news means the story is a total fabrication. A lie. Complete fiction. Most stories called ‘fake news’ are also nothing of the sort.

In both cases, people making the charge simply want to delegitimize their opponent’s argument rather than make the mental and emotional effort to challenge their ideas.

The casualty of such total weakness is not just words, but thought itself.

As our fellow Alabamian Helen Keller wrote in her memoir, she wasn’t able to really think until words entered her mind that day at the water pump.

Words opened Helen Keller’s mind.

Don’t allow words to close yours.

12 hours ago

Grand jury considers Alabama woman’s stabbing of husband with sword

A grand jury in Alabama will hear the case of a woman accused of fatally stabbing her husband with a sword.

Authorities say 50-year-old Jeannette Hale stabbed her husband, Mark, in the chest while he played a guitar in their home on April 2.

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Lawrence County Sheriff Gene Mitchell tells AL.com that responding deputies found Mark Hale bleeding on their front porch. The sword was in the yard.

Mitchell says the husband later died at a hospital. An autopsy released Wednesday said the cause was complications of being stabbed.

The sheriff says Jeanette Hale was arrested on charges involving domestic violence and drugs.

(Associated Press, copyright 2018)

13 hours ago

Poly Sci 101: Gov. Ivey’s monument ad is a prime case of political framing

“Special interests” and “politically correct nonsense” are responsible for efforts to remove Confederate monuments from public spaces, Gov. Kay Ivey says in a recent campaign ad.

At a campaign appearance earlier this week in Foley, Ivey made similar statements on the issue.

“We must learn from our history. And we don’t need folks in Washington or out of state liberals telling us what to do in Alabama,” she said, according to Fox 10 News. “I believe it’s more important that if we want to get where we want to go, we’ve got to understand where we’ve been. And I believe that the people of Alabama agree with that decision and support protecting all of our historical monuments.”

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The conversation about Confederate monuments raises some intellectually and morally stimulating questions: What is their function? Do they function as objects of praise or as objects of historical memory? Who ought to determine whether they stay or go?

I’ll leave those questions aside for now because I want to address how Gov. Ivey has articulated the monuments issue.

George Lakoff is a cognitive scientist who has done a lot of research examining how politics and language intersect, particularly how language is used by individuals and groups to present their opponents in ways that welcome easy refutation. Usually, this means the misrepresentation of those ideas or opponents or, at the very least, a simplistic representation of them.

Lakoff refers to this as the act of “framing,” calling “frames” the arguments or scenarios set up by framing.

Here are a few assumptions that Ivey’s frame makes: Monuments are not only a way to learn from our history, but they are central to learning from our history; non-Alabamians and political enemies are trying to tell us what to do in advocating for monuments’ removal; monuments are a way to ensure that Alabama gets “where it wants to go,” politically, socially, culturally; that Alabamians are opposed to monument removal.

There are obvious political benefits to framing the issue this way. Knowing our history is clearly important. Who could argue that? Alabama is a sovereign state. Nobody wants outsiders tampering with decision-making.

What the frame excludes is an argument demonstrating why monuments are central to learning from our history, and how their removal would prevent us from learning from our history. It also excludes names of individuals or groups who have come from afar to tell us what to do.

It’s undeniable that folks from all around the country want Confederate monuments removed all around the country, and some may even be funding that effort from afar, but the major weakness of Ivey’s frame is a failure to acknowledge the Alabamians who are arguing for monument removal.

Birmingham City officials have advocated their removal.

Tuskegee Mayor Tony Haygood said the city has considered the removal of a Confederate soldier monument in the middle of town.

A Tuskegee graduate wrote a petition last year to the have the same monument removed. The petition garnered more than 1,000 signatures.

City officials in Selma have shown a similar resolve over the years, if not to have a monument removed then to cease the city’s contribution to its maintenance.  

Obviously, Ivey doesn’t have time in a 30-second ad to deconstruct the monument debate’s complexity, and I understand that, but her frame doesn’t accurately articulate who is representing the monument removal view in Alabama.

@jeremywbeaman is a contributing writer for Yellowhammer News

13 hours ago

Alabama legislators should follow Iowa’s lead in protecting the unborn

“If we conservatives truly believe abortion is what we say it is — the butchering of an unborn person — then ending the practice must be our top priority.”

Those were the words of Yellowhammer’s very own J. Pepper Bryars last week in an article he wrote after Congress failed, once again, to ban Planned Parenthood from receiving federal dollars.

Bryars couldn’t have been more accurate in his criticism, but I believe his words are also an indictment of the entire pro-life movement. For far too long we have played defense on the issue of abortion, attempting to hold the status quo while never really producing any substantial legislation on the issue. Not since Casey in June of 1992 have we attempted to make any real challenge to Roe v. Wade.

It’s for that reason that Alabama should follow in the footsteps of the lawmakers from our sister state of Iowa, who last month passed one of the strongest pro-life bills we have seen in decades.

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Iowa Senate bill 2281 (the text of which can be found here), known as the Heartbeat Billwould legally prevent all abortions after the first detectable fetal heartbeat has been discovered, except in the very rare case of a medical emergency.

In other words, only when it is concluded by medical personnel that the life of the mother is in danger can an abortion be performed. Not only does it not make the exception for rape and incest as pro-choice legislators like to commonly reference, but it would also charge any doctor that performs an abortion after a fetal heartbeat has been detected with a Class D felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison.

Why this matters: The earliest fetal heartbeats can be detected is 5-6 weeks after conception, which is right about the time most women are initially discovering they are pregnant. However, new research from the University of Oxford suggests that a fetal heartbeat may be detected as early as 16 days after conception. With the risk of women dying during childbirth decreasing significantly since the 1970s and the recent trends in fetal research, it is clear that a bill such as this could effectively end 99% of abortions statewide.

Also, by creating legislation that defines life as beginning the moment the first detectable heartbeat is discovered we will be using the same red line that is already in use by most professionals in the medical community.

If I were driving home from work one night and had a terrible car accident, medical personnel after arriving on scene and finding me unconscious would immediately check for a pulse indicating whether I had a detectable heartbeat. If a detectable heartbeat is found, I would be considered a living person. If a heartbeat can be used by the medical community as a means of declaring when a person is living after birth, then it makes no sense why we wouldn’t use the same scientifically backed means of declaring life prior to birth.

For far too long the pro-life movement has focused on arguments surrounding fetal viability and gestational timelines, allowing our opponents on the issue the opportunity to define the terms of the debate for us.

Finally, simply passing a bill such as Iowa’s heartbeat bill would only be the beginning of the fight. There is no doubt that the ACLU, SPLC, and every pro-choice organization in the country would descend upon our state capital like locust filing every legal challenge to the bill imaginable. They would organize large protests where people in hats resembling female genitalia will gnash their teeth, but the resulting legal challenge would finally give us the opportunity to eventually stand before the Supreme Court and reargue the merits of the worst decision it has produced since Plessy v. Ferguson.

So, it is incumbent upon our legislators to truly reflect on the very pointed philosophical question Bryars raised regarding what we truly believe as conservatives on the issue of protecting unborn life.

Do you, Governor Kay Ivey, believe as you so eloquently stated that “fighting for our freedoms means fighting for the unborn”?

Do the members of our State Legislature and the pro-life community believe this as well?

If so, then the time has long since passed for us to stand by our words and attack Roe at its very core.

@dannybritton256 is a veteran of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and lives in Athens.

13 hours ago

Alabama forward Braxton Key says he will transfer

Alabama sophomore forward Braxton Key is leaving the team and plans to transfer.

Crimson Tide coach Avery Johnson said Friday Key has been granted his release. He says Key “certainly has a bright future, but he has to do what’s best for him.”

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Key started 17 games last season after missing the first 10 with a knee injury. He averaged 7.0 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.

He led the Tide in scoring his first season and was named to the Southeastern Conference’s all-freshman team. Key averaged 12 points and 5.7 rebounds as a freshman while ranking second on the team in assists.

He says it wasn’t an easy decision to make.

The Tide is also expected to lose point guard Collin Sexton, who declared for the draft.

(Associated Press, copyright 2018)