The Wire

  • More Americans watched the royal wedding than the Alabama-Georgia national title game

    Excerpt from WSFA:

    Nielsen reported 29.2 million Americans tuned in to 15 channels to catch a glimpse of the American actress marrying Europe’s most popular prince.

    Numbers in the United Kingdom were about 18 million. That’s down from the 24 million Britons who watched the last royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011, according to CNN. The audience in the United States was only 23 million.

    With an extra 6 million viewers, there’s no question the new Duchess of Sussex spiked American interest this time around.

    But how does her wedding compare to TV ratings for other major events?

    It did not surpass Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration in 2017, although it came noticeably close. Trump had a TV audience of 30.6 million.

    And the NFL’s super bowl still sits far above the rest of the field with 103.4 million viewers in 2018.

    Even so, the royal wedding topped these major TV events of the last year:

    — 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship – Alabama vs. Georgia – 16.7 million
    — 2018 Men’s basketball national championship game – Villanova vs. Michigan – 16.5 million

  • Rabid fox bites two people at Fairhope golf course

    Excerpt from WKRG:

    Fairhope Police say two people were bitten by a rabid fox at the Rock Creek Golf Club.

    The first person was bitten Sunday while playing golf. When he got out of his cart the red fox ran up and bit his leg. The golfer went to the hospital for treatment.

    On Monday morning, police say the fox bit another person. A member of the course’s ground crew saw the animal and another person was bitten in the leg trying to catch it. Fairhope Animal Control came and to the scene and took the fox away. According to a press release, “it was taken to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences for testing, and it tested positive for rabies.  The persons bitten have been notified to seek appropriate treatment.”

    Fairhope Police are asking the public to report any strange behavior in animals. Foxes are reclusive and are rarely seen during the day, the department says. They also avoid human contact.

  • VIDEO: New Ainsworth Ad Calls For Teachers To Be Trained And Armed To Combat School Shootings

    Excerpt from a news release:

    Republican lieutenant governor candidate Will Ainsworth on Monday began airing a new campaign commercial that promotes his plan to combat school shooter situations by training, certifying, and voluntarily arming teachers.

    “Our new ad should serve as a call to action because every school shooting that takes place in another state around the country brings us one step closer to an active shooter attacking classrooms here, in Alabama” Ainsworth said. “Signs reading ‘Gun Free Zone’ are a magnet for those who wish to do harm, so we must provide teachers with the training, knowledge, and ability to defend their students with something more lethal than a ruler and a No. 2 pencil.”

    Under the provisions of legislation Ainsworth introduced during the regular session, teachers and administrators who are approved by a local school board, local superintendent, and local law enforcement director may volunteer to undergo mental health evaluation and complete thorough law enforcement training in areas like firearms safety, crisis management, active shooter engagements, and hostile situations.

    Once certified, teachers would be authorized to voluntarily “carry, possess, store, or otherwise control an authorized weapon while on the premises of a public school.” Much like undercover air marshals who are allowed to be armed on planes, the identities of armed educators will be provided to law enforcement agencies but otherwise kept confidential.
    Its script reads:

    Following the deadly school shooting at Santa Fe High School in Texas on Friday, Ainsworth called on Gov. Kay Ivey to convene a special session on school safety so his legislation and other needed classroom security measures may be passed and put in place during the upcoming summer break.

2 hours ago

Dawson: Statements about Gov Ivey ‘dangerous move’ that could ‘tank the election’

(Campaigns/YHN)

Scott Dawson, a Republican candidate for the governor of Alabama, criticized Gov. Kay Ivey and a state agency last week, for funding that went to an Alabama based LGBTQ non-profit organization. Since then, it seems as if the gubernatorial race in Alabama has been turned upside down.

In his statement Tuesday, Dawson said, “Let me be clear. The Ivey administration has betrayed Alabama values by giving nearly one million dollars of taxpayer dollars to Free2Be, an activist organization which promotes transgenderism and alternate lifestyles to Alabama’s children.”

ADECA, which administers the state’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program with funding provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, was responsible for the allocation of funds to Free2Be.

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According to ADECA, Free2Be has received nearly $1.7 million in grants from ADECA since September 2014.

Ivey responded to Dawson’s statements while at a luncheon in Tuscaloosa saying, “That’s nonsense.”

“I certainly don’t agree with the agenda or the values of that organization. The funding is federal funding. It’s been going on since 2014. There are no Alabama tax dollars involved,” Ivey told reporters.

When a reporter questioned Ivey on whether or not she was upset, Ivey responded, “Do I look upset?”

“Lookie here, he’s all over the board,” Ivey said. “He’s not getting any traction. He’s low in the polls. He’s three weeks away from the election. He’s getting desperate.”

Ivey is correct. When personal attacks are being hurled toward a rival, it signals desperation. And desperation this is. I was honestly shocked that Dawson would come forward with such bold accusations towards Ivey.

When a candidate is this close to the election, statements like these, that aren’t backed with sufficient and thorough investigation, should not be made.

During an appearance on Yellowhammer Radio’s “The Wake Up Call with Baylor and Hannah”, Dawson was questioned on his statements regarding the funding that is awarded to Free2Be.

“When we found it, we were like this just doesn’t look right, doesn’t look like it needs to be there,” Dawson said. “That’s when we started investigating the organization.”

Dawson reminded the audience that his intent in bringing up the funds was to warrant transparency for the state of Alabama.

He said, “This is just a statement about transparency. We need to make sure we know where our money is going, that we know why we are taking money, and how in the world these folks get $800,000 from ADECA.”

While I echo the statements Dawson makes here about transparency and ensuring that Alabamians know where their tax dollars are being spent, I must say that only a miniscule amount of research would have shown that ADECA grants are federally funded and in no way utilize tax payer dollars.

In closing the interview, Dawson said, “Quite honestly, you know, it was a dangerous move because it could just tank the election. I am just being forthright with you, but Alabama needs to know what’s going on in Alabama government.”

I think his comments did cost him the election. While I have great respect for Scott Dawson, I believe his coming forward with these statements was foolish. A lack of knowledge and research can really hurt you on the campaign trail and we are witnessing this right now.

It’s difficult for a GOP gubernatorial candidate to unseat a GOP incumbent who has, for the most part, had a good track record.

I understand the motive behind Dawson’s statements. That organization does not represent what most Alabamians see fit for a way of life. I just wish Dawson had gone about things differently and spent more time looking into the matter.

Dawson, along with everyone else running for office in America, should learn that research and getting the facts straight goes a long way. While it may be too late for Dawson, others should learn of the danger of proposing baseless investigations.

Ivey, who has received endorsement from the NRA, has shied from the public eye over the past few months. When you have a good track record as the head of Alabama, you can do these types of things. Since taking office, Gov. Ivey has not had a largely negative conflict.

Ivey’s objective in this election is to ride out her past successes in hopes of another four years as Alabama’s CEO and it might just work, so long as the unsubstantiated claims continue to be tossed her way.

@RealKyleMorris is a Yellowhammer News contributor and host of The Weekend Briefing that airs noon-2 p.m. Saturdays on 101.1 WDYE

3 hours ago

Any politician not calling for a special session on school security is committing political malpractice

(W.Miller/YHN)

The most predictable thing in America is that we will have another school shooting soon. We don’t know where it will be, but it is coming.

Every delay in addressing these issues is another day closer to more dead kids, and an eventual mass casualty event in Alabama. We can talk about hardening targets via new construction, and limiting access to guns until we are blue in the face, but these things are either expensive or not happening.

Every politician in a heated race in Alabama should be calling for a special session on school safety. State Representative and candidate for Lieutenant Governor Will Ainsworth is right on track with a real solution:

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“Every school shooting that takes place in another state around the country brings us one step closer to an active shooter attacking classrooms here, in Alabama, so the governor would be wise to call a special session this summer,” Ainsworth said.  “Signs reading ‘Gun Free Zone’ are a magnet for those who wish to do harm, so we must provide teachers with the training, knowledge, and ability to defend their students with something more lethal than a ruler and a No. 2 pencil.”

Of course there is an ad as well:

Why this matters: This is good politics and good policy. The people have decided on this. The media can pretend all they want that people are torn on this, but they are not. Americans, and Alabamians especially, understand that there is nothing stopping shooters from walking into their kids’ school today and shooting it up. The idea that allowing teachers to carry makes a child less safe is laughable, the teacher willing to do harm is not stopped by a gun-free zone. Good teachers with guns, however, are following the law and the law is protecting school shooters.

The details:

— 69 percent of Republicans are in favor of allowing teachers to carry.

— 78 percent of parents would feel more safe, or just as safe, with their child’s teacher being armed.

— The media is lying and saying there have been 22 school shootings in 2018. They include accidental discharge of a firearm in their count.

— As of May 8th, Gov. Kay Ivey had not ruled out a special session, but she has not responded to Ainsworth’s call.

@TheDaleJackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a conservative talk show from 7-11 am weekdays on WVNN

Why Christians should visit holy lands

(Wikicommons)

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, last week, we talked about the opening of the new embassy in Jerusalem by the United States. Guatemala, later in the week, also moved their embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem.

Harry, in the aftermath of what happened on that day, there were, as we talked about, a number of Palestinians that were trying to breech the security border fence in Israel and they were pushed back by Israeli soldiers. A number of Palestinians were killed.

Later last week, we found that, indeed, while there were a number of Palestinians protesting, they were infiltrated by a number of terrorists and, in fact, there’s video evidence that Hamas was paying children to be involved in that group and some of those children lost their lives.

WHY VISIT THE HOLY LAND?

DR. REEDER: Tom, I’m going to be over there while this program is airing. People ask me, “Why do you go there?” It’s a principle I’ve learned in my own life and I use it in teaching others: If you can get direct access to the environment to where things occur, you pull in all of your senses when it comes time to learn and that enhances your learning — you get insight while you’re on-site.

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As we are spending the time there, we’ll go to the various places. I have a wonderful guide that goes before us and checks all the logistics and then makes her statements about the area. She’s very knowledgeable and then she steps back. And then I start going into connecting the dots — Old Testament, New Testament, what happened here, why’d it happen here — and the providence of God.

SITES OF JESUS’ MINISTRY CAN BRING THE BIBLE TO LIFE

I take people to the city of Naan — that’s where Jesus raised the boy who was being carried out of the city. I actually have found the place where that occurred and, not long after that, interestingly, an archaeological team working from the United States working in Israel found that the gates of the city were actually right there. And the way I found it is I found the ruins of an old church that used to be there, knowing that, early on, they would build churches on sites where certain things had occurred. That’s how I found it and then archeology, there was a big article on this in Biblical Archeological Review, they begin to dig and, sure enough, they found out that here’s where the gates of Naan were.

Now, there’s a lot of reasons to weep when your only son died if you’re a widow. In the surrounding societies, widows lost their legitimacy of existence when their husband died. What could preserve them is their children, in general, but the firstborn male, in particular.

Therefore, with her husband gone and her child gone, if she actually had been in another country, many of them, they just put them out and let them die or even, in some cases, put them to death because such women were considered as a burden upon society and no longer a productive member of society.

In Israel, that was not the case because the Lord had embedded the dignity of women into the ceremonial laws, in general, and the Law of God, in particular: “Honor your father and your mother.” “Do not commit adultery” — the sanctity of marriage and, therefore, the wife’s position in a marriage, that a wife was not just property.

He raises the boy and she’s got a lot of reason for joy and the people are amazed and they say, “He’s a prophet.” What a lot of people don’t realize is that there was a great prophet by the name of Elisha and that is the very area where he ministered. He, of course, raised a widow’s son as an affirmation that he had followed Elijah, who raises a widow’s son.

And, right there in that very area, they would be fully aware of that, very sensitive to that story and, when Jesus comes in and raises up the widow’s son in that same area, no wonder they cry out, “This is the prophet of whom we have waited.” What you can see is the amazing connecting of dots of all that takes place in this rather small country, about the size of New Jersey.

WHY IS ISRAEL SO CONTROVERSIAL?

TOM LAMPRECHT: And, Harry, as we look at Israel and the miracles that took place — some of the stories that you just shared with us just now, yet today it seems to be somewhat of a powder keg ready to go off at any moment. Harry, is that coincidental or is there a spiritual implication there?

DR. REEDER: We’re constantly amazed at how accurate the Bible is, both what it has recorded as history and then what it prophesies as history. Prophecy in the Bible is pre-written history and God has already told us of these conflicts that are going to be there, the conflicts that are going to exist throughout the world, and the particular conflicts that are going to be there in terms of the enmity of the nations.

Now we should, as believers, always pray for the peace of Jerusalem, we should always promote peace in the area and we need to deal justly with all sides in the conflict that is there. And you need to remember that you have brothers and sisters who are Jewish, who are in Christ and know the Lord, and you have brothers and sisters who are Palestinian who are in Christ and know the Lord. Therefore, we’re always laboring for that peace in the area.

However, Tom, while I’m there, I hope to let people see their Bible come alive and then, when we get back, I get people writing me all the time, “Can I tell you what that means? My Bible now is so alive when I read it because I was right there,” –getting insight while you’re on-site.

One of the places that the people will go is the Golan Heights and, when we go there, we’ll be looking over into Syria. Not only is there tension on the southern border of Hamas and Egypt and the Gaza, but there’s also, as you know, quite a bit of tension with Syria because Syria has become a proxy for Iran and Iran has already attempted some incursions. We’ll be taking a look from the observation post that they allow you to look from.

IT IS IMPORTANT TO SHARE THE GOSPEL

While we’re there, we’re going to share Christ with people and we’re going to pray for Israel. Let me just also say, Tom, that 30 years ago, it was less than 1 percent of Jewish people confessed Christ as Lord and Savior. It is now believed that they’re rising up to 5 percent. Now, that doesn’t sound like much, but that is an extensive multiplication.

There’s also some evidence within the military of an underground movement of the Gospel taking place in the Israeli country and there have been a number of churches that have been able to secure some freedoms that Christian churches have not enjoyed in the past but now do enjoy, which then has opened up other doors in ministry as well.

When I pray for the peace of Jerusalem, I not only pray, certainly, for the peace among the nations and the ethnicities, but I also want to pray very specifically for the Gospel of Peace so that men and women can be right with God through the redeeming work of Jesus Christ, filled with the Spirit of God.

When you’re filled with the Spirit of God, then you have the fruit of the Spirit — love, and joy, and peace, and patience, and kindness, and goodness and faithfulness, and gentleness and self-control — and then pray that the Gospel of saving grace in Christ that brings men and women at peace with God would promote their peace with one another and then, in fact, reach out in peace, certainly not to the detriment of the security of the nation, but in order to promote the security of the nation.

And I do pray that, somehow in some way, God uses our country here, America, as a part of both of those desires that I pray for. One part is that America will have believers who are praying for and sending those who can share the Gospel throughout the land of Israel. And, secondly, that the leadership of our nation might be able to assist in some way to bring a political, and national and ethnic peace among the peoples that are there but, all the while, seeing that movement of the Gospel of peace of Jesus Christ and the redemptive work of Christ bringing the true shalom — shalom, that wonderful word of peace.

COMING UP TOMORROW: OUR GOVERNMENT BRANCHES IN JEOPARDY?

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, on tomorrow’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to take you to a report that was released by the New York Times last week which ought to be somewhat concerning for all of us. It really describes how the separation of the three branches of our government are starting to erode.

DR. REEDER: Not only is it the law that is king in America — not any individual or any one branch of government — but how that wisdom needs to be embraced once again.

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

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

8 hours ago

A Trump doctrine for Singapore and beyond

(White House/Flickr)

After Pyongyang railed this week that the U.S.-South Korean Max Thunder military drills were a rehearsal for an invasion of the North, and imperiled the Singapore summit, the Pentagon dialed them back.

The B-52 exercises alongside F-22 stealth fighters were canceled.

But Pyongyang had other objections.

Sunday, NSC adviser John Bolton spoke of a “Libyan model” for the North’s disarmament, referring to Moammar Gadhafi’s surrender of all his weapons of mass destruction in 2004. The U.S. was invited into Libya to pick them up and cart them off, whereupon sanctions were lifted.

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As Libya was subsequently attacked by NATO and Gadhafi lynched, North Korea denounced Bolton and all this talk of the “Libyan model” of unilateral disarmament.

North Korea wants a step-by-step approach, each concession by Pyongyang to be met by a U.S. concession. And Bolton sitting beside Trump, and across the table from Kim Jong Un in Shanghai, may be inhibiting.

What was predictable and predicted has come to pass.

If we expected Kim to commit at Singapore to Bolton’s demand for “complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization,” and a swift follow-through, we were deluding ourselves.

At Singapore, both sides will have demands, and both will have to offer concessions, if there is to be a deal.

What does Kim Jong Un want?

An end to U.S. and South Korean military exercises and sanctions on the North, trade and investment, U.S. recognition of his regime, a peace treaty, and the eventual removal of U.S. bases and troops.

He is likely to offer an end to the testing of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles, no transfer of nuclear weapons or strategic missiles to third powers, a drawdown of troops on the DMZ, and the opening of North Korea’s borders to trade and travel.

As for his nuclear weapons and the facilities to produce them, these are Kim’s crown jewels. These brought him to the attention of the world and the Americans to the table. These are why President Trump is flying 10,000 miles to meet and talk with him.

And, unlike Gadhafi, Kim is not going to give them up.

Assuming the summit comes off June 12, this is the reality Trump will face in Singapore: a North Korea willing to halt the testing of nukes and ICBMs and to engage diplomatically and economically.

As for having Americans come into his country, pick up his nuclear weapons, remove them and begin intrusive inspections to ensure he has neither nuclear bombs nor the means to produce, deliver or hide them, that would be tantamount to a surrender by Kim.

Trump is not going to get that. And if he adopts a Bolton policy of “all or nothing,” he is likely to get nothing at all.

Yet, thanks to Trump’s threats and refusal to accept a “frozen conflict” on the Korean peninsula, the makings of a real deal are present, if Trump does not make the perfect the enemy of the good.

For there is nothing North Korea is likely to demand that cannot be granted, as long as the security of South Korea is assured to the degree that it can be assured, while living alongside a nuclear-armed North.

Hence, when Kim cavils or balks in Singapore, as he almost surely will, at any demand for a pre-emptive surrender of his nuclear arsenal, Trump should have a fallback position.

If we cannot have everything we want, what can we live with?

Moreover, while we are running a risk today, an intransigent North Korea that walks out would be running a risk as well.

A collapse in talks between Kim and the United States and Kim and South Korea would raise the possibility that he and his Chinese patrons could face an East Asia Cold War where South Korea and Japan also have acquired nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them.

In the last analysis, the United States should be willing to accept both the concessions to the North that the South is willing to make and the risks from the North that the South is willing to take.

For, ultimately, they are the one who are going to have to live on the same peninsula with Kim and his nukes.

Trump ran on a foreign policy that may fairly be described as a Trump Doctrine: In the post-post-Cold War era, the United States will start looking out for America first.

This does not mean isolationism or the abandonment of our allies. It does mean a review and reassessment of all the guarantees we have issued to go to war on behalf of other countries, and the eventual transfer of responsibility for the defense of our friends over to our friends.

In the future, the U.S. will stop futilely imploring allies to do more for their own defense and will begin telling them that their defense is primarily their own responsibility. Our allies must cease to be our dependents.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

(Creators, copyright 2018)

1 day ago

The leftist duumvirate is subverting, not protecting, ‘our democracy’

(Pixabay)

It is increasingly clear that the Trump-hating holdovers from the Obama administration and their media enablers — together, the duumvirate — are not protecting “our democracy” but subverting it by fraudulently scandalizing and delegitimizing President Trump.

To avoid an email avalanche, let me emphasize that I know the difference between a democracy and a constitutional republic, but I am using the terminology of the Trump-hating left, which, by the way, prefers a democracy to a constitutional republic. But I digress.

As often happens, the truly bad actors (the duumvirate, in this case) are benefiting from the factual complexity involved, which they have exacerbated through disinformation, slanted reporting and outright lies.

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They went ballistic when candidate Donald Trump wouldn’t definitively answer in advance whether he would accept the presidential election results. Their fake outrage was purportedly over Trump’s ostensible willingness to allow a cloud to hang over the Clinton presidency in the event she won. But Trump was just saying that he wasn’t going to prematurely concede that no chicanery would occur that could result in his defeat.

I only bring this up to highlight the phoniness of liberals’ outrage, as shown by their engaging in exactly the same behavior for which they savaged Trump for merely considering. Ever since Trump was elected, they’ve tried to destroy and remove him and obstruct his agenda based on a mythical storyline and phantom “facts” concerning his supposed collusion with Russia to steal the election. (Actually, we now know their nefarious behavior preceded the election because they needed “insurance” in case he won.) As former U.S. Attorney Andrew McCarthy says, the government used its covert powers to investigate Trump despite having no evidence of a crime. There still is zero evidence.

Notwithstanding their misdirection to lead us off the scent, it’s becoming clear that they bootstrapped the case against Trump based on thirdhand rumors elicited from a government-placed spy in the Trump campaign and on a dossier full of innuendo and lies that was procured and purchased by the Clinton campaign under cover of a law firm and shadow corporation. What utter sleaze! Though fully aware Trump’s opponents bought the dossier and that its contents were salacious and unsubstantiated, they brazenly presented it to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to get a warrant, without disclosing any of these damning details. This duplicitous dossier was an indispensable component of the government’s Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant application.

James Comey, former FBI director and current self-promoter, denies that the dossier was crucial to the warrant application and pretends it was funded by Republicans. If he really believes that (and reasonable people really don’t believe he really believes that), then he is betraying a disqualifying ignorance , showing he had no business heading up this investigation — or the FBI, for that matter. This same James Comey, who is so zealous to ensnare Trump for Russian collusion that exists only in fevered leftist minds, bent over backward to exonerate Clinton for real crimes concerning the willful destruction of her emails. This same sanctimonious James Comey perniciously gamed the system by leaking memos he prepared while in the FBI to a law professor friend for the admitted purpose of triggering a special counsel investigation. Is this behavior we should expect from the nation’s top law enforcement officer, or are these the actions of some disgruntled two-bit Deep Throat wannabe trying to even the score against President Trump for firing him?

Though we know that the duumvirate will support darn near anything to advance its beloved leftist agenda, can we even fathom the magnitude of its hypocrisy in looking the other way at the gross conflicts of interest of the deep-state Trump investigators? How can anyone with a scintilla of decency not read with abject horror the email exchanges between the adulterously love-struck FBI agent Peter Strzok and top FBI aide Lisa Page? It’s undeniable that they were hellbent on shielding Clinton from justice and inflicting injustices upon Trump.

Throughout this ordeal, the government has thwarted legitimate congressional information requests by speciously invoking national security concerns and then deceitfully redacting documents it was ultimately forced to turn over — not to protect national security but to cover its own rear end. With one hand, the government claims it can’t release information concerning its spying on the Trump campaign (even claiming that congressional investigators are extorting it for the information), and with the other, it leaks this same information to friendly news outlets to mitigate the outrage coming its way when the unredacted documents are released and their duplicity is revealed.

If even a fraction of our disturbing suspicions concerning the government’s actions in this Trump investigation and pretend Clinton investigation are true, the Obama administration not only conspired to surveil, undermine and criminalize the opposition party’s presidential candidate but also has holdovers in government who are still engaged in a massive cover-up that in purpose, scope and the sheer number of important officials participating makes Watergate look like child’s play.

David Limbaugh is a writer, author and attorney.

(Creators, copyright 2018)

2 days ago

Israel at 70: Bibi’s troubled hour of power

(YouTube)

For Bibi Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving prime minister save only founding father David Ben-Gurion, it has been a week of triumph.

Last Tuesday, President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the Iran nuclear deal as Bibi had demanded. Thursday, after Iran launched 20 missiles at the Golan Heights, Bibi answered with a 70-missile attack on Iran in Syria.

“If it rains on us, it will storm on them. I hope we have finished the episode,” Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said, boasting that Israel’s raids hit “nearly all Iranian infrastructure in Syria.”

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The day before, Bibi was in Moscow, persuading Vladimir Putin to cancel the sale of Russia’s S-300 air defense system to Damascus.

Yesterday, in an event televised worldwide, the U.S. embassy was transferred to Jerusalem, with Trump’s daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner doing the honors in what Bibi called a “glorious day.” Few can recall a time when Israel seemed in so favorable a position.

The White House and the Republican Party that controls Congress are solidly behind Israel. Egypt is cooperating to battle terrorists in Sinai.

Israel has a de facto alliance with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf royals. And the Palestinians have never been more divided, isolated and alone.

Yet, there is another side to this story, also visible this last week.

As the transfer ceremony of the Jerusalem embassy was taking place, TV split screens showed pictures of protesting Palestinians, 52 of whom were shot dead Monday, with thousands wounded by snipers. Some 40,000 had rallied against the U.S. embassy move.

Even before Monday’s body count, the Gaza Health Ministry said that, over the previous six Fridays of “March of Return” protests, 49 Palestinians had been killed and 2,240 hit by live fire from Israeli troops.

Those dead and wounded Palestinians are not likely to be forgotten in Gaza. And while Israel has never had so many Arab regimes willing to work with her in pushing back against Iran, Arab League Chief Ahmed Aboul Gheit called the U.S. embassy move to Jerusalem, a “clear violation of international law.”

Gheit added: “The fall of Palestinian martyrs by the bullets of the Israeli occupation must ring an alarm … bell to any state that does not find anything wrong with the immoral and illegal stance that we are watching.”

Last week, Hezbollah, which arose in resistance to the 1982 Israeli occupation of Lebanon, and expelled the Israeli army 18 years later, won Lebanon’s elections. A Hezbollah-backed coalition will likely form the new government in Beirut.

Michael Oren, Israel’s former ambassador to the U.S. and Bibi ally, said that any attack by Hezbollah, which fought Israel to a standstill in 2006, should bring an Israeli declaration of war — on Lebanon.

While Israel launched some 100 strikes on Syria in recent years, Syrian President Bashar Assad has survived and, with the aid of Hezbollah, Iran and Russia, won his civil war.

Assad and his army and allies are far stronger now, while President Trump, Israel’s indispensable ally, speaks of bringing U.S. troops home from Syria. In polls, a majority of Americans lines up behind Israel in its clashes, but a majority also wants no more U.S. wars in the Middle East.

Also, Sunday, the U.S. sustained another major political defeat.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi lost his re-election bid. Based on early results, the winning coalition was that of Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, against whose forces U.S. troops fought a decade ago.

Running second was a ticket led by a Shiite militia general close to Iran. When a new government is formed in Baghdad, the orientation of Iraq seems certain to shift away from the United States.

While the Israelis are the most powerful nation in the region, how long can they keep 2 million Palestinian Arabs confined in the penal colony that is the Gaza Strip? How long can they keep the 2 million Palestinians of the West Bank living in conditions even Israeli leaders have begun to compare to apartheid?

Across the West, especially in universities, a BDS movement to have students, companies and consumers boycott, divest and sanction Israeli-produced products has been gaining ground.

The Palestinians may have been abandoned by Arab rulers and the wider world. Yet, history teaches that people forced to survive in such conditions eventually rise in rebellion and revolution, take revenge, and exact retribution for what was done to them and their own.

Republican leaders often say that we cannot permit “any daylight” between the U.S. position and that of Israel.

But can the country that decried for decades the panicked reaction of an Ohio National Guard that shot and killed four students at Kent State University sit silent as scores of unarmed protesters are shot to death and thousands are wounded by Israeli troops in Gaza?

Bibi and Israel appear to be on a winning streak. It is difficult to see how, over the long run, it can be sustained.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

(Creators, copyright 2018)

3 days ago

OK, the Ivey/Todd/Dawson circus is over, let’s get back to the issues that actually matter

(Campaigns, YouTube)

There is no evidence Gov. Kay Ivey is gay. Former State Representative Patricia Todd lost her job as the head of a gay rights’ group in Florida as punishment for a stupid tweet. Evangelist Scott Dawson still claims he doesn’t understand the grant process, a process he held multiple press conferences about. The only candidate who struck the right note on this issue is Tommy Battle:

“We want to go back to that conversation about our great state, the great state of Alabama,” WKRG reports Battle said at a Wednesday press conference. “I decided to run for governor of the state of Alabama because I thought we could do better. I believe that with the right leadership, we can implement a vision and even develop a plan that makes Alabama a better place.”

Why this matters:

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Battle got the media into covering a press conference in the middle of the “OUTING!” They thought he was going to wade into the cesspool and hit Ivey on grants to gay groups or hit Dawson for being a disingenuous guy. He didn’t. He did exactly what we all need to do, which is to focus on actual issues and campaign differences.

At his press conference Battle said he wants to talk about the “great things happening in Alabama.”  With less than three weeks left before the primary, all the candidates should do just that.

@TheDaleJackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a conservative talk show from 7-11 am weekdays on WVNN

Making sense of Trump’s negotiations

(White House/Flickr)

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:

NORTH KOREAN CAPTIVES SET FREE GIVE PSALM TO MIKE PENCE

TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, a week ago, it was a special day for the United States and a special day for three men who were being held hostage by the North Koreans. When they got off the plane, one of the three handed Vice President Mike Pence a note.

Mike Pence tweeted, “It was an amazing moment I’ll never forget when three Americans stepped onto the tarmac and gave me a signed personal note with Psalm 126 on the back. To these men of faith and courage, God Bless You and welcome home.”

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Psalm 126:1-3 reads:

“When the Lord restored the fortunes of the captives of Zion, we were like those who dreamed. Then our mouth was filled with laughter,

our tongue with songs of joy.

Then they said among the nations,

‘The Lord has done great things for them.’

The Lord has done great things for us; we are glad.”

DR. REEDER: As we try to look at issues around the world from a Christian World and life view, we try to do this in a commentary fashion and not in a sermonic fashion, but when I hear something like this, I am immediately wanting to go to Psalm 126 and let’s preach the Gospel from the Psalms.

The Bible records that wonderful moment when Jesus is on the road to Emmaus with his disciples and He says to them whose hearts were downcast, “Do you not know that the Scriptures had to be fulfilled?” And, beginning with Moses, with all the prophets in the psalms, He explained Himself in all the Scriptures.

OUR FAITH IS ONE OF FREEING CAPTIVES

And, of course, when you study the psalms, what you’re ultimately seeing is not only the immediate context and fulfillment of these psalms and their historic position, but you’re also seeing them point to Christ. In other words, Christ is the ultimate singer of the psalms — not David, but the great Son of David who is greater than David — and that is Christ, the King of Glory and the Savior of sinners.

When this wonderful psalm that praises God for His delivery of His covenant people and they were restored to the blessings of Zion and, as they are redeemed and delivered from their captivity, while of course that would have great promises as you look at the issue of the restoration of Israel from the Babylonian captivity, but it has even greater fulfillment when you look ultimately not to the people of God being restored after being under the disciplining hand of God from various captivities — what you ultimately have is the glorious blessing of the redeeming work of Christ who sets free His people from the captivity of our sin.

Therefore, when Israel is taken out of the bondage of Egypt and then brought to the promised land, in later years, when Israel is restored from a Babylonian captivity, this psalm takes on particular meaning for God’s covenant people who are numbered within the nation of Israel.

CHRIST BROUGHT THAT FREEDOM TO ALL NATIONS

But now God’s covenant people are brought from all the nations and what you’re looking to is not the Lord’s use of fallible instruments by His grace such as Moses, and David, and Daniel, and Nebuchadnezzar and Cyrus and all of these who are in positions of leadership that God uses because the Lord can turn the hearts of the king wheresoever He wishes even as turns the rivers to the sea.

You not only see that but what you see is the intentional work of the God of glory in sending His Son, the Redeemer of His people, the Prophet, Priest and King Who is the fulfillment of all the Scriptures and, in Him, we are delivered and brought into the ultimate Zion and we’ll be delivered finally into a new heavens and a new earth for the covenant people of God who are now being brought from all nations into the kingdom of God.

But, having looked at that glorious truth, now you back up to the initiative that is taking place out of this administration out of the basis of God’s common grace and you see a people who take a text of Scripture that refers to the blessings of God’s covenant people when they are delivered, not only historically, but also spiritually God’s people delivered into the people of God, looking at that glorious psalm that is fulfilled in Christ in the kingdom of God.

And they make an application, not an interpretation, that they feel the same way as they were in the desolation, all of the deprivations taking place — being wrongfully imprisoned in Korea — but now, as a “statement of good will” they are freed through the negotiations that have been taking place by this administration. Of course, it’s come out now that there have been some backdoor negotiations.

DO THE ENDS JUSTIFY THE MEANS?

Now, Tom, all of this begs for you and me to make some kind of comment. This, at best, in terms of accepted statecraft, is very unusual. You have a president who is tweeting out things that are, to say the least, offensive to this leader in Korea and here is Korea, who is in Asia, and this is an honor/shame culture — you just don’t abide by any acts of shame — and so everyone anticipates, when he puts out “rocket man” and all of this, that this is going to send relationships spiraling out of control and yet backdoor meetings taking place.

And then we see this monumental moment of North Korean dictator and the South Korean leadership right at the demilitarized zone, shaking hands, and these declarations, and now these peace accords that are moving forward and now promises of denuclearization taking place. He’s wily as a fox, this president is, because he’s doing these things publicly and these other things are taking place privately. Much of what we think is accepted statecraft actually, in negotiations around issues, ought to be reexamined.

IS AMERICA FIRST A CHRISTIAN MANTRA?

Now, what I don’t think should be reexamined is the call for decorum in relationships. I do not believe that you violate the dignity of human beings in order to maneuver them to a negotiating table to get the best deal that you can. And I do not believe that a commitment “to put America first” which, in its best light is, I’m going to look out for the interest of my nation first and, by the way, I expect you to look out for the interest of your nation first. I believe the best interpretation of that is you are elected to take care of your people so that should guide your negotiations.

Tom, let me share a story: My father was involved in baseball and he was on the periphery of a trade that took place between some major league baseball teams. Dad’s team got clearly the best of the trade — it was a six-player swap and the three players they got went on to have unbelievably productive seasons and the three players they gave up had unproductive seasons.

And I looked at Dad and I said to Dad, “That was a great trade.” He said, “No, son, that was a bad trade. Whenever you make a trade and whenever you do a negotiation, you want to make sure that the person you’re negotiating with gets a win. You need to get the win you need to get, but they need to get a win, too, for two reasons. First, you want to honor the dignity of the person that you’re negotiating with and secondly, if you’re not negotiating in good faith so that they come out with a positive, then they’ll never be back at another negotiating table with you. And, son, very seldom in the affairs of life do you ever settle anything that needs to be settled at one sit-down and at one negotiation.”

WE NEGOTIATE TO WIN OTHERS TO CHRIST

While I will acknowledge that that unorthodoxy is maybe a good thing from time to time, I do want to say and affirm, from a Christian world and life view, people are made in the image of God and nations are made up of people and, therefore, when we deal with people, we need to deal with them with dignity and respect. We always are looking as Christians, wanting to influence our own nation to conduct itself in such a way that, by God’s grace, it might be a bridge-building moment that we can actually create opportunities for us to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all the nations.

And we will see not only the blessing of people who are unjustly imprisoned for political reasons delivered and see their joy expressed in that handwritten note with that Psalm 126 that was given to our vice-president, but we can see even more that people give praise to the God of glory because they are delivered from their sins and the negotiations among nations have actually opened the doors for the ambassadors of Christ to bring the Good News.

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

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

 

3 days ago

Marginalizing Melania

(White House/Flickr)

Need more evidence that there are two Americas? Here: Left-wing hatred of Melania Trump is inversely proportional to flyover admiration for the first lady.

In just the last month, late-night clown Jimmy Kimmel mocked Trump’s Slovenian accent, CNN contributor April Ryan attacked her as “not culturally American,” former Hillary Clinton spokesman Philippe Reines derided her genteel presence at former first lady Barbara’s funeral, and horror writer Stephen King snickered at her hospitalization this week for kidney surgery.

Yet, while partisans in the political press and entertainment media work hard to stoke division against and resentment of the Trump administration, “Melania” is now among the fastest-growing baby names in the nation, according to recently released Social Security data. And a new poll by anti-Trump CNN released on Monday reported a 10 percent jump in the first lady’s favorability ratings — from 47 percent in January to 57 percent last week.

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That’s nearly 6 in 10 Americans with a positive view of FLOTUS. Uh-oh!

Imagine how much higher those impressive numbers would be if the same celeb tabloid reporters and TV hosts who slavered over the Obamas in Us magazine and on The View afforded Melania Trump the same courtesies. Imagine if the same couture divas who organized “Runway to Win” Obama campaign fundraisers and published breathless weekly reports on “Michelle Obama’s Best Looks Ever” harnessed their influence to promote Trump’s style and fashion sense.

Despite Trump’s successful career as an internationally photographed model featured in Harper’s Bazaar, GQ, Vanity Fair and Vogue, lib-dominated fashion and celebrity magazines have shunned her. Pop culture editors and producers — who turned Barack and Michelle Obama into the Beltway Brangelina, promoting their election campaign, re-election campaign, books and every last pet project — have ghosted her.

Why? Fear.

Melania Trump is not just strikingly beautiful. She is worldly, well-traveled and well-read. She speaks English, French, German, Italian and Serbian, in addition to her native Slovenian — more languages than any other woman who has served as America’s first lady. Her devotion to son Barron is exemplary. Her aversion to limelight and lack of political ambition are refreshing. So is her ability to refrain from public grievance-mongering over “sacrifices” and trade-offs made between work and home life (looking at you, Hill and ‘Chelle O).

The hostile White House press corps blames Trump’s own reticence for the publicity vacuum around her. But I believe there’s something deeper at work:

More exposure to this interesting and remarkable woman would mean more familiarity with her. More familiarity with her might mean more popularity. And God forbid there be more Republican women in the public eye who can compete with — and win against — the usual parade of militant kvetchers and moaners who pass themselves off as feminist role models.

Doubling down, both Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama have assailed all women who didn’t vote for their political agendas as brainwashed by their husbands or selfishly unenlightened. “In light of this last election, I’m concerned about us, as women, and what we think about ourselves and about each other,” Obama complained at the United State of Women summit in California last week. “What is going on in our heads where we let that happen.”

It’s called choice. It’s called rejecting the tired old ideas that some women are more equal than others or that one party has a gender-based monopoly over the other. Smug Democratic divas who unleash their contempt for independent-minded women instead of working to win them over have learned nothing from the 2016 election.

So Trump, like so many prominent GOP women before her, will continue to be snubbed, humiliated and demonized by narrative control freaks because women on the right threaten the cultural hegemony of the left. Black or white, rich or poor, centrist or “far right,” native-born or naturalized, Republican mothers, wives and daughters must be otherized and forced to stay in media-manufactured lanes.

When leftists can’t win on their ideas, they resort to marginalizing the messengers of ideology they abhor — and their mates. It’s not an attractive look.

Michelle Malkin is host of “Michelle Malkin Investigates” on CRTV.com.

(Creators, copyright 2018)

4 days ago

If Trump is so terrible, why must the media lie about what he says?

(White House/Flickr)

Americans are constantly being pounded with the narrative that President Donald Trump is a loud-mouthed, brash New Yorker who says crass things. It’s true, no question about it. There is already plenty to hammer the guy on, so there is no reason for the mainstream media to continue their lying about things he says.

Look at these headlines, then read the actual Trump quotes they reference.

USA Today Headline: 

OnPolitics Today: Trump calls undocumented people ‘animals,’ rhetoric with a dark past

Actual quote:

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SHERIFF MIMS: Thank you. There could be an MS-13 member I know about — if they don’t reach a certain threshold, I cannot tell ICE about it.

THE PRESIDENT: We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we’re stopping a lot of them — but we’re taking people out of the country. You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals.

The Atlantic Headline:

Trump Defends White-Nationalist Protesters: ‘Some Very Fine People on Both Sides’

Actual quote:

“What about the alt-left that came charging at, as you say, at the alt-right?” Trump said. “Do they have any semblance of guilt?”

“I’ve condemned neo-Nazis. I’ve condemned many different groups. But not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me,” he said.

“You had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists,” Trump said. “The press has treated them absolutely unfairly.”

“You also had some very fine people on both sides,” he said.

BBC Headline:

‘Drug dealers, criminals, rapists’: What Trump thinks of Mexicans

Actual quote:

“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

Why this matters: All three of these quotes were spun-up as wildly-offensive and racist comments. They are also all taken out of context completely. In all of these instances, Trump separates good guys from bad guys, and he makes it clear the blunt language is for the bad guys. Unfortunately, once it is fed through the national media prism in NYC and DC, the actual context and intent is completely lost.

This is why the media is losing trust every single day.

The details:

— A poll done last year indicated that 63 percent of Americans thought “traditional media outlets” spread fake news before this latest fake controversy developed. Now? That number is 77 percent.

— 90 percent of media coverage has been negative against Trump in the first four months of this year.

— In January, 67 percent of Republicans saw political bias in the news while only 26 percent of Democrats felt that way, which tells us Democrats are enjoying what the media is selling.

— A recent poll shows that 51 percent of Republicans view the American media as the “enemy of the people,” while only 22 percent of Democrats felt the same way.

@TheDaleJackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a conservative talk show from 7-11 am weekdays on WVNN

Let the Alabama pastor speak … and everybody speak up too

(WVTM 13 / Facebook)

Everyone likes free speech until someone says something we find vile.

Birmingham pastor Michael Jordan of New Era Baptist Church was in the news this week, decrying Church of the Highlands’ plans to open a campus in a high crime area of the inner city, calling “the white church” racist and hypocritical.

Jordan’s interview with Birmingham NBC affiliate WVTM is shocking and divisive, and many Alabamians, black and white, are slamming him as a “racist.”

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“It’s a slavemaster church,” Jordan also said in an interview with Al.com. “I call it plantation religion, slavemaster religion. The white rich folks start a church and put a black pastor in charge of it.”

Pretty harsh words. Pretty sure that’s the last thing Church of the Highlands is trying to be. But Jordan comes across, however resentfully, however colorfully, as having sincere concerns. We don’t have to agree with him to try and understand where he’s coming from.

If someone is willing to voice such controversial statements, chances are there are other people who feel the same way but aren’t willing to say it out loud.

It’s been said the best solution to speech we don’t like is more speech, so it’s worth your time to read this op-ed by Joe Lockett, a black radio talk show host in Birmingham who stepped up to confront speech with speech, even though he might disagree with some of my points here.

Also worth reading the classic “Prayer of St. Francis” to put all this in perspective:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
Where there is offense, let me bring pardon.
Where there is discord, let me bring union.
Where there is error, let me bring truth.
Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
Where there is despair, let me bring hope.
Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.
Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
O Master, let me not seek as much
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love,
for it is in giving that one receives,
it is in self-forgetting that one finds,
it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,
it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life.

Bring truth … bring love … bring pardon … bring joy … all require action, all can be done through speech.

So … speak up.

Rachel Blackmon Bryars is managing editor of Yellowhammer News

4 days ago

Why Jerusalem matters

(W.Miller/YHN)

This week, the Trump administration inaugurated the new American embassy in Jerusalem. The celebration in Israel was palpable; the embassy move came amidst the national celebration of the 70th anniversary of the creation of the state. The streets filled with Jews of all sorts, cheering and dancing.

Meanwhile, on the Gaza border, Hamas broadened its monthlong campaign to break down the Israel border, staging border “protests” attended by thousands — including terrorists who have used the supposed protests as a staging point for violent attacks on Israeli troops and territory. Palestinian terrorists have caused mass chaos, throwing Molotov cocktails at troops, attempting to rush the border, flinging explosives and tying incendiaries to kites in an attempt to set Israeli territory alight. The Israeli Defense Forces have responded with restraint. Despite this, a few dozen Palestinians have been killed, not the hundreds or thousands Hamas would presumably prefer.

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But even as Yahya Sinwar, leader of Hamas in Gaza, suggested that “more than 100,000 people could storm the fence” between Israel and Gaza, and as 23-year-old Mohammed Mansoura announced, “We are excited to storm and get inside … to kill, throw stones,” the media covered the slow-rolling terror assault as a form of peaceful protest. A New York Times headline read “Israeli Troops Kill Dozens of Palestinian Protesters.” A Wall Street Journal headline reads “Scores Killed, Thousands Injured as Palestinians Protest US Embassy Opening In Jerusalem.”

Never mind that the riots had been going on for weeks preceding the embassy opening. Never mind that Hamas and the Palestinian Authority could quickly and permanently end all violence simply by stopping the violence. The real issue, according to the press, is President Trump and his Israeli friends.

What drives the leftist press’s coverage? Simply put, antipathy to the West. Israel is seen as an outpost of colonialism by leftists, and has been since the 1967 war. Then-President Barack Obama expressed the view well in his 2009 speech in Cairo, suggesting that Israel’s rationale relied on its “tragic history” that “culminated in an unprecedented Holocaust.” In this view, the Palestinians were shunted aside in favor of providing national reparations to Jews; the Jews took their Western ways into the heart of a foreign region.

This isn’t true. The living proof of that is Israel’s eternal connection to Jerusalem. That’s why both radical Muslims (including the Palestinian leadership) and the far left deny Israel’s historic bond with its homeland and hope desperately to stop public recognition of that bond. If Israel exists because Jewish connection pre-existed everything else, then Israel isn’t a new outpost of the West; it’s the oldest center of the West. That’s why Trump’s announcement is important: It’s a recognition that the West was founded on Jerusalem, rather than the other way around.

Peace will come when everyone recognizes what Trump has recognized: The Jewish connection to Jerusalem is unbreakable. And peace will come when Israel’s enemies realize that violence can’t change that underlying fact.

Ben Shapiro, 34, is a graduate of UCLA and Harvard Law School, host of “The Ben Shapiro Show” and editor-in-chief of DailyWire.com.

(Creators, copyright 2018)

Stay married through ‘hurricane’ years, struggles — it’s worth it

(Pixabay)

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:

NEW STUDY SAYS LONG-TERM MARRIAGES YIELD HAPPINESS

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, World Magazine has reported on a new study: Couples that stay married for the long run end up happier, according to a new study by a Pennsylvania State University sociologist.

Paul Amato and co-author Spencer James of Brigham Young University used 20 years of data from the longest-running detailed study of marriage and looked at reported rates of happiness, shared activities and discord among 1,600 spouses, including more than 200 who have been married for 40 years or more. Contrary to previous studies, that found marital quality deteriorates over time, this new study found marital quality actually improves over the years for couples who stay together.

“Positive outcomes for couples in long-term marriages are the norm,” Amato said in an interview with the Institute for Family Studies. “Contrary to what many people think, marital quality does not inevitably decline; it tends to remain high or even improve over the decades.”

DR. REEDER: When you add the dynamic of a lifestyle engaged in a local church with regularity embedded in the life of the church, it goes out the roof in terms of longevity, perseverance, happiness and affirmation of the relationships and the increasing depth of intimacy between the husband and wife.

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ALL MARRIAGES HAVE STAGES — KNOWLEDGE OF THEM IS KEY

Even as the physical and sexual dynamics begin to dissipate because of biological reasons, the emotional intimacy actually skyrockets in those days because of all that they have built upon throughout life and shared in life. And then, if they are surrounded, as I would apply, with the means of grace, preaching, and worship and fellowship then that even skyrockets it. By the way, the dip in this — I like the way the reporter said it — “the hurricane of children,” particularly in their adolescent and teenage years.

TOM LAMPRECHT:  Indeed, the report says, after a slight dip in happiness and shared activities in early marriage, the hurricane of young children and careers, for that matter, happiness and shared activities improve over the years and discord declines.

DR. REEDER: Many times, your children arrive at those challenging ages — I think it starts around 11, maybe 12, what we call “being thrown into the barrel” with your kids at that age — and that usually coincides about the same time where some career decisions happen. You’ve been in your career, you’re moving along and now, “Am I going to stay in this career, move to another one or I got to take a step forward? What am I going to do?” The challenge of time devoted to career, time devoted to children, so it’s no doubt that, during those years, that’s where the “slight dip” occurs.

HARD STAGES BECOME FRUITFUL BY BIBLICAL FOUNDATION

Actually, I would like to say when you work through those years, that’s what makes the following years so expansively and explosively enjoyable with each other. What you learn together as you went through it, what you’ve accomplished together, particularly, when you apply the Biblical principles of a man giving spiritual leadership in the home and of a woman bringing that completion of emotional health and insight into the home and that she brings order into a home.

I always share with people that I know, when a home is orderly, there is an extraordinary woman in that home. And I’m not just talking about things are neat; I’m talking about the relationships are orderly. The woman sets that pattern of orderliness and, when there is a depth of concern, then I know a man is doing his job because leadership, according to the Bible, is a servant’s heart that wants to care for people and, if there’s a man who is caring for his wife and his children, that compassionate environment begins to be seen in the home.

Now, certainly, women have that great nurturing dynamic and men have that leadership, “Here’s where we’re heading,” and all of that, but I will just say I have always noted a Christian home where the husband and wife are fulfilling their overlapping but yet unique roles, men will bring that depth of intimacy that flows from their concern for their wife and women bring that depth of order that flows from their trust in the Lord working through their husband and working through them together into the lives of their children. Those things are fleshed out in those “dip/hurricane years” where it doesn’t seem so satisfying and joyous but, yet, on the other side, there’s some things that really develop out of that.

FOCUS ON WHAT DREW YOU TO EACH OTHER AND DEVELOP IT

May I just say, anecdotally, I cannot envision my life apart from my wife, just what she means to me and, hopefully, what I can mean to her. As you know because we’ve been friends for a long time, I always tell people “long courtship, short engagements,” and, in my case, it was “short courtship, short engagement.” It was a three-month courtship and a three-month engagement and that was it.

Some have said, “Do you regret that? Would you have liked to have taken longer courtship?” Are you kidding me? If I could go back and redo it, I would just reduce it down another two or three months if I could. It has been such a great blessing for me to have enjoyed my wife. I am not only attracted to her beauty, but I am astounded by her depth — the very thing that drew me into her life — but what I’m more astounded by is what we’ve been able to develop throughout the years. Tom, when we get in the car now and go on a trip, a lot of our talk is what we’ve enjoyed together throughout the years and our anticipation of what’s in the future.

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, why is it in our society today that people give up so quickly on marriage?

DR. REEDER: Because they give up on everything. We live in a society today that says, “You’re entitled to happiness, not your call to holiness.” That means instant happiness — not only is everything there for you, but it’s supposed to be there immediately for you and you don’t have to work at it. “It’s mine, now, fast,” and that’s why we destroy our partners in marriage because they exist for us instead of we exist for the Lord and now we want to be used of the Lord in their life.

MENTORS FOR YOUNG COUPLES ARE VITAL

TOM LAMPRECHT:  Perhaps it might sound simplistic, but advising a young couple who are going through the hurricane challenging years of life, is it wrong just to say, “Hang in there”?

DR. REEDER: Not only, “Hang in there,” but, “Get some mentors.” That’s why I brought out at the beginning to get embedded in a good local church. And I would say to my brothers and sisters in those churches and my pastor friends, “We need to make sure we’ve got good premarital counseling in place and we need to make sure that we’ve got a way for people to develop relationships.”

One of the things we love to do at Briarwood is our Sunday Schools are called “congregational communities” and they all have older couples in them. Our young couples’ classes all have two, three or four older couples they can develop relationships with and learn from. Everybody needs fathers and grandfathers; everybody needs mothers and grandmothers in their lives. They need that all the time and so we want to give that to them.

And then you need to have a solid worship dynamic in a church that’s God-centered. The family that learns to worship God together will be able to stay together for the Lord. Worship sets the thermostat in your Christian life and that includes your marriage.

TIME TO COMMIT TO HARD WORK AGAIN — IN MARRIAGE, TOO

And then the other thing is this: it’s just like pastors give up too quickly in their churches, people give up too quickly at their job, people give up too quickly at a challenge — it’s we want it now and, if it requires effort, then I need to move onto something else.

Your marriage is going to require work — marriage is hard work — but God can enable you and God can strengthen you. He wouldn’t call you to stay together for life if He wasn’t able to keep you together for life. And, of course, it is the power of the Gospel that is life-changing and that allows our lives to change for the Lord and in relationship to each other.

LIFETIME COMMITMENT LEADS TO A LIFE OF CONTENTMENT

I told Cindy the other day, “You know, you had no business marrying me. That was about the dumbest decision you ever made of which I am eternally grateful.”

Marriage for me was like the big date — I didn’t have to take her home; now I got her. Of course, I found out pretty quickly that the big date is not a way of life. And I would wake up — literally wake up — in my first year of marriage and look and there’s Cindy and I would say, “Oh my goodness, this is the rest of my life. I’ve made a commitment. This is the rest of my life.”

That’s the way I was raised — I’d made a lifetime commitment and I’d say, “This is the rest of my life. This isn’t: take a shot and, if it doesn’t work, go try another one.” My dating life, I usually dated and I had someone different every week. So now I said, “This is my life.”

Well, I still wake up — matter of fact, I wake up more at night now than I used to — and I still look at her when I wake up and I no longer think, “This is the rest of my life.” I now think, “I’ve got so little of my life left to live with her and I’m so grateful for her.”

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

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

5 days ago

Don’t politicians see that raising taxes has nasty side effects?

(W.Miller/YHN)

Seattle is worried about the well-being of the poor and mentally ill people living there, so it’s going to drive businesses out of town.

OK, that’s not how the politicians describe their plan, but that’s probably how it will work out.

Members of Seattle’s city council want all big Seattle businesses to pay a tax of $500 per employee.

In response, Amazon stopped building a new complex. Construction workers joined Amazon in protesting the new tax.

On the other side are city council members like Kshama Sawant. She and members of her political party, Socialist Alternative, demonstrated in support of the tax. They chanted, “Housing is a human right!”

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Seattle does have large encampments of street people. Some are mentally ill. Some are young people looking to get stoned and live free. Some are homeless simply because they cannot afford apartments. There are many reasons for that, but one is that Amazon and other companies have brought so many new jobs to Seattle that the demand for housing exceeds the supply.

Normally, when that happens, the free market quickly solves the problem. Builders view the rising prices as a wonderful thing. They quickly build new housing to sell to the new customers. But in Seattle, and many towns in America, politicians make that very hard.

Seattle’s building code is 745 pages long.

If you want to build apartments, you better hire lawyers and “fixers” to keep you on the right side of the rules.

Seattle’s rules insist that “Welded splices shall be of ASTM A706 steel” and “foam plastic signs shall not be greater than 1/2 inch” thick.

On the majority of Seattle’s land, building any high-rise is illegal; zoning rules say only single-family houses may be built.

Want to run a cheap flophouse with single rooms? Seattle’s rules make that just about impossible.

Finally, if a landlord decides to take a building off the market, he must pay each of his tenants $3,000 in relocation costs.

No wonder there’s a housing shortage.

Seattle’s big-government restrictions created a housing problem. So now they propose to solve it with more heavy-handed government.

Seattle promises its new per-employee tax will only hit “big” companies, those grossing more than $20 million per year (about 3 percent of Seattle’s businesses).

Don’t the politicians realize that many growing companies will simply stop expanding when they get close to $20 million in income, just as companies, looking to escape Obamacare, avoid employing more than 49 workers?

Some pay lawyers to split the company into pieces. Some expand in another state. Don’t politicians see that raising taxes has nasty side effects? I guess not.

Monday, after Amazon’s pushback, the city council imposed a tax of $275 per worker instead of the originally proposed $500 tax.

They called that “compromise,” but it sounds like replacing a bad plan with a half-as-bad plan.

It’s not only government bureaucrats who are to blame. The consulting firm McKinsey weighed in with an analysis of Seattle-area homelessness and concluded the city needed to spend $400 million a year to solve the homelessness problem.

I’m sure Seattle, and many other governments, will manage to spend $400 million without solving the problem.

It’s good that Amazon pushed back against the tax. Their reminder that they could reduce or close up business if Seattle’s government got too greedy helped cut the tax roughly in half.

You can’t just keep squeezing businesses or other taxpayers forever and not expect them to try to escape. At some point, businesses will pack up and leave. Then there will be fewer paying jobs that make a city’s population less likely to be homeless in the first place.

Sawant and the other big-taxers try to make productive companies, which employ people so they can afford things like rent, sound like villains. She called Amazon’s threat to leave “extortion.” The activist group Working Washington asked Seattle’s attorney general to charge Amazon with the crime of “issuing mob-like threats.”

Mob-like threats? Amazon just wants to be left alone so it can build complexes, hire people and sell stuff.

As usual, government is the organization that sounds mob-like.

John Stossel is author of “No They Can’t! Why Government Fails — But Individuals Succeed.”

(JFS Productions, copyright 2018)

5 days ago

SHAME! State Rep. Patricia Todd, Alabama’s first openly gay lawmaker, tries to ‘out’ Gov. Kay Ivey in hateful nighttime Tweet

(MSNBC/YouTube)

With just 34 words twisted together in cruel and bitter intent, Alabama State Rep. Patricia Todd – our first openly gay lawmaker and a professional human rights activist – has shown us everything that’s wrong with politics, journalism and the awful thing called Twitter.

Here’s what Todd tweeted Tuesday night:

Folks, decent people just don’t do this

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Todd should be utterly ashamed of herself. She, of all people, should know that the club she just wielded is dripping wet with hatred and bigotry and evil. She ought to never have picked it up, but now that she has, its stink and stain are on her hands.

The journalists across the state who immediately began spreading the rumor should be ashamed of themselves, too. They, of all people, should know better than to report something so unsubstantiated. They should have all done what I wanted to do when I saw the tweet – ignore it. Alas, they didn’t, so here we are, however regrettably.

And the people who gleefully retweeted or “loved” Todd’s tweet should also be ashamed of themselves. The following bit is just for them: Next time you complain about how parts of our society have become so mean, take a look in the mirror and you’ll see who’s partly to blame.

Again, decent people don’t do this. They don’t spread it. And they don’t cheer it.

Even though she didn’t need to, Gov. Kay Ivey’s campaign was quick to respond.

“This is a disgusting lie being pushed by a paid liberal political hack,” a campaign spokesperson told me last night. “There is absolutely no truth to it.”

If good old-fashioned shame still helped people remain somewhat civilized, here’s what should happen next:

— Todd should immediately apologize to Ivey, personally.

— If she doesn’t, the Democrat Party of Alabama should demand she does so.

— Journalists in the state should take some time to examine their policies and standards. Simply because someone says something, even if that person holds some high office, doesn’t mean it should be amplified so quickly, especially without evidence or even any serious attempt to gather evidence. This isn’t why any of us got into this business, at least I hope not.

— And some of us just need to get the heck off of Twitter. It’s unhealthy. The pathway from a random thought to worldwide publication has become dangerously short, and some people obviously cannot handle the responsibility. We used to have barriers that actually helped us be more prudent in what we said, and the delay helped tame our rash nature. It used to require effort to make such a claim, and the effort helped separate the meaningful from the meaningless. Now, nothing. Every hateful or moronic utterance is treated equally. (By the way, why hasn’t Twitter suspended Todd for bullying?)

Thankfully, the silver lining was that there were a few people who responded to Todd’s tweet correctly:

Ivey is a nice lady. Sure, she’s in politics, and as they say, it ain’t “beanbag.” But she deserves better, much better than this. Anyone does.

If Todd isn’t ashamed.

If the media isn’t ashamed.

And if those who cheered them on aren’t ashamed.

Then I’ve got enough to go around.

Because this morning, I’m pretty ashamed of all of them.

@jpepperbryars is the editor of Yellowhammer News and the author of American Warfighter

6 days ago

Sports gambling in Alabama should not be used to create new spending

(YHN/Pixabay)

Alabama’s gambling mouthpieces were out in force yesterday on social media after a Supreme Court ruling cleared the way for states to regulate sports gambling. There is no question that Alabama could use this revenue, that is obvious whether you want higher taxes or not. But for some people, it will NEVER be enough, even if we “fully-funded” our needs, people would call for more. Some won’t even wait for that. The Alabama Political Reporter’s Josh Moon used this opportunity to call for more spending:

Why this matters:

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Alabamians can already gamble on sports. I placed this bet at 7:30 this morning to prove it.

Keep in mind, these are the same people that will tell you our current education system is under-funded, as is our healthcare system, and our bridges and roads too. None of that matters, they will just continue to call for new programs and new spending. No matter how much is generated, more will be demanded because the beast is never satiated.

All of this is a long shot, but Alabama has real needs, and IF Alabama is able to legalize this gaming, the money should be spent to fix our roads and bridges.

The details:

— Polarizing sports analyst claims Alabama is the #1 state per capita for sports betting.
— ESPN is tracking states preparing to enter the sports gambling market; it lists 19 states that have introduced bills or passed bills concerning this matter.
— Nevada’s Gaming Control reported there was $4.8 billion bets in Nevada sports books last year.
— DraftKings’s CEO claims there is $150 billion in illegal bets each year through black market sports books.

Insanity: NYC mayor wants to enable drug use

(NYC, Pixabay)

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:

DEBLASIO WANTS TO SET UP DRUG ADMINISTRATION CENTERS

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, I want to take you to a story out of The Daily Wire. New York City mayor, Bill De Blasio, recently announced plans to open four supervised injection sites where illegal drug users can get their fix with no fear of arrest while medical professionals stand by to prevent fatal overdoses.

The proposed “Overdose Prevention Centers” would be safe consumption spaces where addicts can self-administer pre-obtained narcotics such as heroin, oxycontin and other opioids.

HARRY REEDER: One elected official says, “Here is another example of liberal insanity,” but I’d like to take it a step back further than that. Whenever we engage in sinful behavior, we engage in that which is destructive and it’s interesting how we will rationalize that which is destructive.

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And I try to tell people constantly in counseling situations that sin never makes sense. Sin is insanity — and insane act is what sin is — but we find a way to rationalize it and to make it thinkable because, if you can make it thinkable, you can make it acceptable and, if you make it thinkable and acceptable, you can make it doable.

THIS IS HOW SIN CREEPS INTO SOCIETY

Here, we have an illegal act — that means it’s a sin. Here, we have a destructive act of the body which God has given us to serve Him — the Bible says, “Present your bodies as a living sacrifice,” that we are to buffet our bodies and make them our servants; instead of destroying our bodies, we are to actually build them up — “Jesus grew in wisdom and stature.” Therefore, we try to understand how to be good stewards of our body.

And here are the narcotics that actually destroy and the government has every interest in the general welfare to set an environment whereby people cannot destroy a society by destroying themselves and their marriages. That’s what’s in place. Now the view is, “Well, look, people are doing these drugs, anyway, so let’s make it safe.

IS THE “SAFE SEX” CROWD NOW PROMOTING “SAFE DRUGS”?

Let me give you a comparison. I sat in a school educational committee and I was arguing for a sex education curriculum that focused upon abstinence. I was mocked and ridiculed: “Don’t you understand that our children are going to have sex? We’re not going to teach your sacred sex concept that sex is to be sacred and for procreation within marriage. What we’re going to do is understand that our kids are going to have sex so we want to make it safe for them.”

And I said, “Well, let me ask you something else. Are your kids going to lie?” “Well, yeah, they’re going to lie.” “Well, are we going to have a curriculum on safe lying? Are your kids going to cheat? Are we going to have a curriculum on safe cheating?” Do you think that there are some kids that might steal? Are we going to have a curriculum on safe stealing?”

“Well, no, that would be ridiculous.” I said, “Well, hold it. There’s ‘Do not lie, do not cheat, do not steal,’ and those are commandments of God that were preceded by ‘Do not commit adultery.’ Why is it that you will take those commandments that we know our kids are going to transgress and not teach safe stealing, cheating and lying, but you’re willing to teach safe adultery and safe promiscuity when, in reality, it’s not safe? And I can give you all the statistics of what happens physically and emotionally to people who have sex outside of marriage and that’s the sexually transmitted diseases and the epidemic that cannot be stopped.”

DRUGS ARE NOT SAFE 

People are going to do drugs, so let’s make it safe for them to kill themselves with drugs. How are you going to make it safe to kill yourself with drugs? You’re going to kill yourself with drugs — okay, you stop them from using a dirty needle but the drugs are still killing them.

We’ve got a law that says you can’t buy these drugs, but if they buy the drugs and they can bring their own — remember the old, when you went to the restaurant, bring your own bottle, BYOB, well, here is bring your own drugs — and, if you bring your own drugs, we’re going to give you needles, we’re going to administer it and, if something happens, we’re going to medicate you, etc., etc.

Listen, we already have places to medicate people if they have overdoses and people understand what an overdose is, but now what we’re going to do is help you kill yourself with drugs and, somehow, we’re going to call that compassion and that we are a compassionate society.

MERCY OR MADNESS?

And that’s where the Mayor De Blasio of New York now says to his people, people are doing drugs. We don’t want them to kill themselves with the drugs so we’re going to give them safe drug-taking by giving them four injection sites, provide the injection devices and provide the injection personnel. If they already have illegally obtained the drugs, they can bring them there in order to have them administered.

Now, what are you going to do with them afterward? I don’t know what’s going to take place — I don’t understand any of that — but now you’ve got this insanity of providing a safe environment for somebody to kill themselves with the administration of drugs. While we’re sitting here struggling with this opioid epidemic and everybody knows that it is killing people, what we’re going to do is we’re going to help you administer the thing that’s going to kill you.

NOW THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT AGENCY IS IN THE WRONG?

Now, by the way, we’re going to help you so you kill yourself safely is what we’re doing. That’s the insanity of our sin. And now you’ve got a national government that’s put in a predicament just the same way it is in a sanctuary city because we’ve got a law that’s being violated in that city.

Do we step in on top of the city, which is now promoting the administration of illegal drugs? Is that what we’re going to do — are we going to step in on top of that? What are we going to do with that city? It’s the same issue that they have with cities that say, “We’re not going to administer the immigration policy of the nation.”

And now you’ve got the Drug Enforcement Agency that’s got to step in on top of a city that is actually a drug administration center where people have purchased illegal drugs to have them administered there within the city. That’s where we are in that context.

Now, listen, when we see the insanity of sin, from a Christian world and life view, that should never amaze me. That doesn’t mean I don’t want to step in and speak to public policy that has sanity in order to love my neighbor, but it does mean this: I realize again, and again, and again that the only answer to such situations is the glorious truth of the Gospel.

And so, as one of my friends, who is a federal judge, said, “Harry, the church has to learn to be indignant and outraged over sin and compassionate and caring for the sinner.” And that’s what we have to do.

And what marries the outrage of sin and the love of the sinner is the Gospel message that Jesus Christ, the Judge of all sin, came to bear your judgement for your sin at the cross and has come to give you life so that you can be set free from your sin and that you can actually find a Savior in which you do not need to escape into the death throes of drug addiction.

Therefore, to Mayor De Blasio, what I would encourage you to do, my friend, is I would encourage you to go to those evangelical churches — I can name some of them — who have wonderful ministry efforts to those who are engaged in drug abuse and drug addiction. And the answer is not to enable their drug addiction; the answer is to reach them with the glorious truth of the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ so that life can be lived abundantly in Christ, Who gives life everlastingly.

COMING UP WEDNESDAY: MARRIAGE IS GOOD FOR YOU?

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, on Wednesday’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to take you to a story which is rather encouraging. Couples who stay married for the long run end up happier, according to a new study by a Pennsylvania State University sociologist.

HARRY REEDER: Oh, my goodness, you mean the covenant of marriage — a conjugal, heterosexual, lifelong relationship — is actually good for people? Wow. A survey that affirms that? Wow. What would that mean for public policy? What would that mean for our nation? And, by the way, what does that mean for the church in light of where we are as a nation in terms of marriage? Let’s talk about it tomorrow.

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

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

6 days ago

Kanye saying what black conservatives have said for decades

In the aftermath of the Kanye West dust-up, my heart goes out to the white people who control the Democratic Party. My pity stems from the hip-hop megastar’s November announcement to his packed concert audience that he did not vote in the presidential election but if he had, he would have voted for Donald Trump. Then, on April 21, West took to his Twitter account, which has 28 million followers, to announce, “I love the way Candace Owens thinks.” Owens is Turning Point USA’s director of urban engagement and has said that former President Barack Obama caused “damage” to race relations in the United States during his two terms in office.

West’s support for Trump, along with his criticism of the “plantation” mentality of the Democratic Party, has been met with vicious backlash from the left. In one song, West raps, “See, that’s the problem with this damn nation. All blacks gotta be Democrats. Man, we ain’t made it off the plantation.” Rep. Maxine Waters said West “talks out of turn” and advised, “He should think twice about politics — and maybe not have so much to say.” The bottom-line sin that West has committed is questioning the hegemony of the Democratic Party among black Americans. The backlash has been so bad that West had to hire personal security to protect him against threats made against his life. Fortunately, the police are investigating those threats.

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Kanye West is not saying anything different from what Dr. Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Jason Riley, I and other black libertarians/conservatives have been saying for decades. In fact, West has tweeted quotations from Sowell, such as “Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it” and “The most basic question is not what is best but who shall decide what is best.” Tweeting those Sowell quotations represents the highest order of blasphemy in the eyes of leftists.

The big difference between black libertarians/conservatives and West is that he has 28 million Twitter followers and a huge audience of listeners whereas few blacks have even heard of libertarian/conservative blacks outside of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. (I might add in passing that Dr. Thomas Sowell is one of the nation’s most distinguished and accomplished scholars alive today.)

The Kanye problem for the Democratic Party is that if the party doesn’t keep blacks in line and it loses even 20 to 25 percent of the black vote, it can kiss any hope of winning any presidential and many congressional elections goodbye. Democrats may have already seen that threat. That’s why they support illegal immigration and voting rights for noncitizens. Immigrants from south of the border who are here illegally may be seen as either a replacement for or a guarantee against the disaster of losing the black vote.

Keeping blacks blind to the folly of unquestioned support for the Democratic Party by keeping blacks fearful, angry and resentful and painting the Republican Party as racist is vital. Democrats never want blacks to seriously ask questions about what the party has done for them. Here are some facts. The nation’s most troublesome and dangerous cities — Indianapolis, Stockton, Oakland, Milwaukee, Cleveland, Kansas City, Baltimore, Memphis, St. Louis and Detroit — have been run by Democrats, often black Democrats, for nearly a half-century. These and other Democratic-run cities are where blacks suffer the highest murder rates and their youngsters attend the poorest-performing and most unsafe schools.

Democrats could never afford for a large number of black people to observe, “We’ve been putting you in charge of our cities for decades. We even put a black Democrat in the White House. And what has it meant for us? Plus, the president you told us to hate has our unemployment rate near a record low.” It turns out that it’s black votes that count more to black and white politicians than black well-being, black academic excellence and black lives. As for black politicians and civil rights leaders, if they’re going to sell their people down the river to keep Democrats in power, they ought to demand a higher price.

Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.

(Creators, copyright 2018)

6 days ago

7 Things: Gambling ruling confusion in Alabama, Trump keeps a promise made by every president this century, McConnell begs Trump to work with him, and more

(YHN)

1. Gambling ruling could mean big money for Alabama, but it is still illegal here

— Even though some in Congress want to re-implement a ban on sports gambling, a Supreme Court ruling opens the door for wider betting that could mean $150 billion a year in betting.

— Sports handicapper Danny Sheridan says Alabama is the #1 per-capita illegal sports betting state.

2. Trump keeps campaign promise of every president since 1992 and media acts like rioters are peaceful protesters

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— In recorded remarks to a gathering at the embassy in Jerusalem, the president said, “We extend a hand in friendship to Israel, to Palestinians and to all of their neighbors. May there be peace.”

— In spite of misleading headlines all over the mainstream media, Hamas and other radical Islamists urged these “protesters” to attack the gates in hopes of attacking Israelis and planting bombs.

3. Sen. Mitch McConnell wants to work with President Donald Trump on the midterms, Trump should listen

— McConnell has implored Trump to stop criticizing the Senate because it could make voters feel as if it doesn’t matter who is in control, a common misconception amongst Trump’s base.

— If Republicans can keep the Senate, they can continue confirming Trump’s judicial nominees and remake the American judiciary at a record pace.

4. Scummy lawyer of porn star threatens publications with lawsuits for accurately describing his legal practices

— Michael Avenatti, who represents Stormy Daniels for free, is upset that reporters are digging into his shady business dealings in the past and is threatening to sue anyone who does so in pointless frivolous lawsuits.

— It’s odd to see Avenatti complaining about media coverage after receiving $175 MILLION in free media coverage.

5. ALGOP candidate used racial slur, but he wasn’t a Republican until this election

— Larry Lee has been a liberal blogger and advocate for every Alabama Education Association position imaginable, but apparently he feels he can’t win as a Democrat, but he is being challenged.

— During a run for Congress in 1982, Lee said “As we say down home, there’s a n****r in the woodpile somewhere” when talking about campaign finance laws.

6. Seattle creates a tax targeting employers to pay for homelessness, Seattle’s liberalism is not new

— Seattle City Council to introduced a $275 per employee tax on the companies that have profits of over $20 million a year, this includes like Amazon, Starbucks, Boeing, Costco Wholesalers, and Microsoft.

— Seattle declared a homeless state of emergency, this $47 million dollar tax will be used to provide affordable housing and other services.

7. Alabama resident, and no longer kneeling, Oakland A’s baseball player can’t enter Canada

— After becoming notoriously famous for being a jerk and thinking he was famous in a restaurant in Alabama, Bruce Maxwell went home to Arizona and pulled a gun on a pizza delivery driver while drunk resulting in his ongoing legal issues.

— Maxwell’s plea deal included an agreement that he would plead guilty to disorderly conduct. He will be sentenced June 4th and can’t leave the country until then.

The Jordan Peterson phenomenon (VIDEO)

(J. Peterson/YouTube)

Like many others, I have watched the Jordan Peterson phenomenon unfold with a certain fascination.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you don’t spend a lot of time on social media, for Peterson, a mild-mannered psychology professor from the University of Toronto, has emerged as one of the hottest personalities on the internet.

He is followed by millions of people, especially young men. His lectures and presentations—cool, understated, brainy, and blunt—are avidly watched and commented upon. And his new book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, is a number one bestseller all over the world. Moreover, Peterson’s spirited and articulate opposition to the imposition of speech codes in his native Canada has made him a controversial political player, a hero of free speech to his supporters and a right-wing ideologue to his detractors.

His interview with Cathy Newman of Channel 4 News, during which Peterson’s interlocutor revealed herself as a hopelessly biased social justice warrior, has, as of this writing, been viewed 7.5 million times.

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In many ways, Peterson is doing for this generation what Joseph Campbell did for the previous one, namely, reintroducing the archetypal psychology of C.G. Jung in an appealing and provocative manner. Jung’s theorizing centered around what he termed the archetypes of the collective unconscious, which is to say, those primordial instincts, insights, and memories that influence much of our behavior and that substantially inform the religions, philosophies, and rituals of the human race. The Jungian template enables Peterson to interpret many of the classical spiritual texts of Western culture in a fresh way—those very texts so often excoriated by mainstream intellectuals as hopelessly patriarchal, biased, and oppressive. It also permits him to speak with a kind of psychological and spiritual authority to which young people are not accustomed but to which they respond eagerly.

WATCH Barron discuss Peterson:

His new book, an elaboration of twelve basic psychological rules for life, makes for bracing and satisfying reading. Peterson’s considerable erudition is on clear display throughout, but so is his very real experience in the trenches as a practicing psychotherapist. His advice is smart indeed, but it never seems abstract, detached, or unrealistic. In the course of this brief article, I can only hint at some of his fascinating findings and recommendations. A theme that runs through the entire book is that of the play between order and chaos, symbolized most neatly by the intertwining fish of the Tao image. Human consciousness itself, Peterson argues, sets one foot in the former and the other in the latter, balancing the known and the unknown, the settled and the unexplored. Too much of one, and we fall into complacency, routine, and at the limit, tyranny; too much of the other, and we lose our bearings completely, surrendering to the void.

The great myths of the hero—from Gilgamesh to Luke Skywalker and Bilbo Baggins—typically recount the story of someone who leaves complacent domesticity behind in order to venture into the dangerous unknown, where he manages to find something of enormous value to his family or village or society. One key to psychological/spiritual fulfillment is to embody this archetype of the hero, to live one’s life as an adventurous exploration of the unknown. So Peterson tells his readers—especially young men, who have been cowed into complacency for various reasons—to throw back their shoulders, stand tall, and face the challenges of life head on. This archetype of the hero also allows us to read the story of Adam and Eve with fresh eyes. In Paradise (the word itself denotes “walled garden”), our first parents were secure and innocent, but in the manner of inexperienced children. Leaving Paradise was, in one sense, a positive move, for it permitted them to grow up, to engage the chaos of the unknown creatively and intelligently. This reading of Genesis, which has roots in Tillich, Hegel, and others, permits us to see that the goal of the spiritual life is not a simple return to the Garden of dreaming innocence, but rather an inhabiting of the Garden on the far side of the cross, that place where the tomb of Jesus was situated and in which the risen Christ appeared precisely as “gardener.”

Peterson’s investigation of the psyche of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was, for me, one of the most illuminating sections of the book. Solzhenitsyn, of course, was a victim of both Hitler and Stalin, a terrorized and dehumanized inmate in the Gulag Archipelago, and one of the most tortured of souls in the terrible twentieth century. It would have been surpassingly easy for him simply to curse his fate, to lash out in anger at God, to become a sullen figure scurrying about the margins of life. Instead, he endeavored to change his own life, to turn the light of his moral consciousness on himself, to get his psychological house in order. This initial move enabled him to see the world around him with extraordinary clarity and, eventually, to tell the story of Soviet depravity with such devastating moral authority. The lesson that Peterson draws from this example is this: if you want to change the corrupt world, “start to stop doing what you know to be wrong. Start stopping today.”

I have shared just a handful of wise insights from a book that is positively chockablock with them. So do I thoroughly support Jordan Peterson’s approach? Well, no, though a full explication of my objection would take us far beyond the confines of this brief article. In a word, I have the same concern about Peterson that I have about both Campbell and Jung, namely, the Gnosticizing tendency to read Biblical religion purely psychologically and philosophically and not at all historically. No Christian should be surprised that the Scriptures can be profitably read through psychological and philosophical lenses, but at the same time, every Christian has to accept the fact that the God of the Bible is not simply a principle or an abstraction, but rather a living God who acts in history. As I say, to lay this out thoroughly would require at least another article or two or twelve.

On balance, I like this book and warmly recommend it. I think it’s especially valuable for the beleaguered young men in our society, who need a mentor to tell them to stand up straight and act like heroes.

Bishop Robert Barron is the founder of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

1 week ago

Alabama’s race for governor bores us … but shouldn’t that excite us?

(Campaign)

Hardly anyone is paying attention to the race for the Republican Party’s nomination for governor this year.

That’s because the campaign is sort of boring. All four candidates are qualified, rational, reasonable and respectable people, and we lack a serious crisis or pressing issue upon which to contrast their differences.

But isn’t that a good thing?

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Unlike in years past, when I look around our state I think to myself, “Gosh, everything seems to be going quite well.”

I look at our State Legislature and see leaders who are conservative, dedicated and serious.

I look at our business sector and see a thriving, growing environment.

I look at my community and see a culture that has largely withstood the assaults from the left.

And then I look at the four candidates for the GOP nomination for governor and think, “I would be happy voting for any one of them.”

I’ve never been able to think that before.

We have the matriarch, the businessman, the pastor, and the thinker, and who I vote for may simply come down to how I’m feeling on June 5th.

Should the adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” be on my mind, I’ll likely vote for Gov. Kay Ivey.

If I’m thinking even more jobs would be even mo’ better, then Mayor Tommy Battle will be my man.

If I happen to read something in the news that shows our Christian world and life view under attack, then I’ll respond by voting for evangelist Scott Dawson.

And if I’m feeling that we need someone who has a firm grasp of, and commitment to, authentic conservative principles, I’ll fill in the circle beside State Senator Bill Hightower’s name.

Meanwhile, I’ll spend some time writing a little about each, why I like them, and the attributes they could bring to the office.

It might be a boring race … but I’m getting pretty excited about what comes next.

@jpepperbryars is the editor of Yellowhammer News and the author of American Warfighter

1 week ago

Sue Bell Cobb sides with a rapist over law enforcement and should drop out of the race for governor

(S. Cobb/Facebook)

It was bad enough that three different campaigns in Alabama employed a convicted rapist. It got worse when the only coverage the media gave this story was the fact that he was a redemption story, even though he seems careful to not fully admit his crime, making it sound as though he were merely in the wrong place at the wrong time and could have stopped what someone else did:

“I can’t put into words how much it hurts me that I hurt somebody,” according to Al.com’s article. “I regret what happened, regret I was in position to stop what happened and didn’t…. I have a daughter, a mother, a sister. I regret not standing up for another person’s rights; that’s counter to the way I was raised.”

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The media also refuses to share the full details of the crime, instead just saying he served his entire 30-year sentence for rape by forcible compulsion, sodomy I and robbery I, which Littlejohn told Al.com was a plea deal he took and that he “didn’t know any better” because 30 years sounded better than life. They go on to completely ignore his victim (still are).

Yet, Democrat candidate for governor Sue Bell Cobb, after being given every possible benefit of the doubt and opportunity to do and say the right thing, continued to bungle this situation. Cobb decided not only would she defend a convicted rapist AFTER he was arrested for violating the term of his release, she then attacked law enforcement  as “politically motivated” for daring to arrest him:

“Why? The Republicans don’t want to run against Sue Bell Cobb. Governor Ivey doesn’t want to run against Sue Bell Cobb. They found that as an opportunity to take advantage of information that had been sent out into the public forum,” Cobb told Al.com.

Why this matters: Cobb truly thinks all of this is about her. It’s not about the victims. It is not about the children at the church where this convicted rapist is working. It isn’t even about the young women working for her campaign. Everything about this is about Sue Bell Cobb and her inability to do the right thing, her inability to see that law enforcement has to enforce the law. Cobb should apologize to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department and Sheriff Mike Hale, and after she does that, she should drop out of the race for the Democrat nomination.

The details:

— Sue Bell Cobbs’ campaign staffer was convicted of forcible rape and sodomy of a young woman.

— Paul Littlejohn spent 30 years in prison, before “turning his life around” by working on now-Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin’s and now-Senator Doug Jones’s campaigns.

— As a registered sex offender, Littlejohn is prohibited from living or working near schools, but he was working at a church with a daycare.

— He was arrested on charges that he failed to comply with registration requirements, yet Cobb still defended him.

@TheDaleJackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a conservative talk show from 7-11 am weekdays on WVNN

Why it’s crucial that parents examine college faculties

(Pixabay)

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:

SHOCKING IMBALANCE ON COLLEGE CAMPUSES

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, I want to take you to a new study out of the National Association of Scholars. This study found that 39 percent of top-tier liberal arts colleges in the United States don’t have any Republicans on their faculties. This study also found that the Democrat to Republican ratio was 10.4:1 among 8,688 Ph.D.-holding professors. The ratio is 12.7:1 when you take away the two military colleges, West Point and Annapolis. The report states that the 51 institutions they accounted for in the study are among the top 66 ranked colleges in the U.S. News and World Report.

DR. REEDER: Let me go ahead and tell everyone: This is not a partisan program whereby we are arguing for more Republicans to be elected and selected for the faculties of top-tier colleges — that’s not what this is. We’re trying to look at this from a world and life view.

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LOOK TO THE RESURGENCE OF INTEREST IN COMMUNISM

And can I just ask everyone to navigate back to the previous program at the end of last week, an analysis as to why the Communist Manifesto, as modified and implemented by Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao Zedong, etc., has proven to be destitute, has proven to actually produce gulags, prisons, famines, etc.

However, now, it’s cool again. The reason it’s cool again with the students is because of the teachers of our students in the colleges. Who are the teachers? Well, in the days of the ‘60s, that eventually promoted the step-child of the Communist Manifesto, socialism, and made cool all the communist dictators such as Castro and Chez Guevara and others.

They were declared to be cool and that was the way to go because of the abolition of private property, get rid of capitalism, etc. All of that proved to be destructive, as you saw what happened in East Germany, and the Soviet Union, what we see happening in places like Venezuela, Cuba, etc.

Therefore, Marx and those statues were torn down but all of those promoters of the Communist Manifesto went into what, today, is the cultural elite that are shaping the minds of young people. They’re in the media, they’re in the entertainment world and they are in the academy. They teach in the universities, which is where the students are getting this view of Marx and Marxism and the Communist Manifesto and it’s all being taught without the historical realities of what it actually has produced wherever it has gone.

WHO IS TEACHING YOUR CHILDREN?

Please, folks, listen to what I’m about to say. We do this program in order to communicate a Gospel-based Christian world and life view. Why do we do that? Because the way that you view life will determine the way you live life and the way you view life is directly related to your teachers.

Here’s what Jesus said: When all is said and done, the pupil will be like the teacher. Here’s what David said in Psalm 1: “Do not walk in the counsel, the teaching, of the ungodly. Do not stand in the path of sinners and do not sit in the seat of the scorner.”

You need to understand who you choose to teach, what you listen to and how you listen to it is of direct importance and, parents, who you choose to teach your child. When you decide to send your child to a university, do you ever take a look at who makes up the faculty of that university? Do you know who’s going to be teaching your child? All of those teachers have a world and life view.

WHY DO WE NEED TO BE WARY OF AN IMBALANCE?

Now, this analysis that was just done that you referred to, Tom, points out that, in the top-tier — now, we’re not talking about offshoot, private, elite colleges, we’re talking about top-tier universities where most of our cultural shapers are being shaped — you are almost 11 times more likely to have a registered Democrat. Why are they registered Democrats?

I was just listening to an interview of Hillary Clinton. It has recently been counted by one social scientist that she has given 42 reasons why she lost the election. One of them was this. Here was the question that was asked of her: “Did you lose because you are too much of a capitalist?” In other words, “Would you have been elected if you had been more of a socialist than you actually were?”

Her answer was basically yes. She said, even in a place like an Iowa primary, if you don’t distance yourself from capitalism, you can’t be elected. The primary is what? That is a party election.

EVEN CLINTON ADMITS THE DEMOCRATS HAVE SKEWED TO REJECT CAPITALISM

What she is saying is, within the Democratic party, we have arrived at a place that, if you are a capitalist, you are not going to win the primary. And, by the way, I was too much of a capitalist to win the election but, when you get to the primary, you’ve got to distance yourself from capitalism.

Well, where you do you go to? You go to socialism, which is leading you to where? Communism. And what is the basic premise of communism? The abolition of private property and, to abolish private property, you’ve got to take private property which means the state controls the property and the state controls the economy.

Even the most communistic state doesn’t have true communism and that’s China. China has a market economy with a communist government. They found out that the communist economic system just doesn’t work and so they’ve tried to amalgamate it, but that’s not what’s being taught in our universities.

In our universities, this redistribution of wealth mantra is to seize property, seize wealth with the power of taxation, the power of the government and redistribute it. That’s what’s being taught in the college. And, many times, we as parents thoughtlessly send our children off thinking we’re sending them to the universities of the ‘40s, the ‘50s, the ‘60s and, in reality, we’re sending them to the universities that the children of the ‘60s now teach in.

PARENTS, RESEARCH YOUR CHILD’S SCHOOL AND TEACHERS

TOM LAMPRECHT: Parents also might want to consider what the major will be of their child. The report noted that STEM subjects like chemistry, economics, mathematics and physics have a lower Democrat to Republican ratio than social sciences and humanities.

For example, the report could not find a single Republican with an exclusive appointment to fields like gender studies, Africana studies and peace studies. This is out of the top 66 ranked colleges in the United States.

DR. REEDER: Let’s also make the analysis that, in the survey, in the military academies, it’s almost even, with Democrat identification a little bit higher. You pull out the military academies, now you go from 11 times to 13 times higher.

If your child goes to school and walks into a classroom, it is almost 14 times more likely that there’s going to be someone who embraces, at best, a socialist agenda and, likely, the very principles that undergirded the Communist Manifesto that was written by Karl Marx and funded by Engels.

DON’T FORGET YOUR CHURCH TEACHERS MATTER, TOO

Folks, what we’re trying to tell you is this: Ideas matter. Let me put it this way, you respond to things about the way you feel about things. The way you feel about things is conditioned by the way you think about things and the way you think about things is directly related to your teachers.

Therefore, please choose your teachers well. Get under sound preaching every Lord’s Day, get in a good discipleship group with a good teacher, read the right things and go to the right conferences.

And make sure your children are being taught by teachers who will shape their world and life view according to the principles and precepts of God’s Word with utter reliance upon the power of the Spirit of God with their eyes fixed on Jesus, Who came to save them from their sins and Who is coming again to bring us to a new heavens and a new earth and, until we get there, will teach us how to take every thought captive unto the obedience of Jesus Christ.

COMING UP TUESDAY: LOCAL GOVERNMENTS MAKE SHOCKING DECISIONS

TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, on Tuesday’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to take you to a story and, if you thought sanctuary cities was a bad idea, I think you’re going to think this next story is really a bad idea.

HARRY REEDER: Tom, it is interesting to me how either disconnected people are, disinterested people are or apathetic they are in the matter of local government and I mean, directly, city government. Let’s take a look at a premier city in our nation and an unbelievable decision that’s about to be enacted unless the state government puts some type of a restraint on this. It is almost unthinkable.

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

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

1 week ago

Where we’re at in America: Politics separating family members

(Pixabay)

It’s the day after Mother’s Day and so many of you hard-working and career driven mothers have returned to work.

To say that we appreciate you is an understatement. At times, you may feel as though we take things for granted, but I can assure you that is not the case.

Whether it be cooking us a meal when we stop by your house, making sure that we have everything before going on a trip, or just a phone call during the evening, I want to say thank you. Thank you on behalf of the millions of men who sometimes cannot put into words how much their mothers mean to them.

Still, I am concerned about something I saw that really got me thinking. It made me wonder what is happening to family relationships in America. It made me question whether there are limits to a mother’s unconditional love.

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Before you continue reading, please watch this 1-minute video, put out by Nextgen America:

Clearly, the video you just watched was left-leaning, but that is not the point. The point here is that the video reveals a mother who seemingly cannot deal with her son having a separate set of ideals. The tone of this video mocks the thousands of mothers who have had children that have become addicted to drugs or, even worse, committed suicide. We see this type of video after a mother has lost a child due to something horrific, not because her son is a Republican or Democrat.

This is where we are at in America. Many have come to a state of mind where they can no longer tolerate their own family members because of their politics. How disheartening. How incredibly sad that we would go to the trouble to mock the tones of truly heartfelt messages in political aim.

Not only did this video take an extreme amount of time to produce, but it did a fantastic job at skating around the true meaning of Mother’s Day.

At the end of the clip, the woman in the video says, “This Mother’s Day, talk to your child about the GOP.”

Whether she had replaced “GOP” with “Democrats,” it would not have mattered.

I hear too often that personal politics get in the way of a lot of family relationships. That’s why most choose not to discuss them at the dinner table and at family gatherings. I know families that have an extreme amount of disagreements when it comes to their political ideology; however, I did not think that their disagreements had the potential to break a family bond.

When I say family member, I am speaking about a 20-year-old who saw the world differently than her parents. I received a message from this young lady, who I will refer to as Amanda, last summer expressing concern over what to do. She informed me that she was kicked out of her house and forced to live with a friend until she could afford a place to live. Amanda told me that her mother and father, who shared a political mindset, found out that she had voted for someone else in the 2016 presidential election. Amanda had informed me of how they had practically abandoned her after understanding her politics. When I asked Amanda about other family members, she told me that her grandmother had died three years prior to all of this occurring. I was shocked. I was only 20-years old myself. What kind of advice was I supposed to give to Amanda? I had seen her tweet a few times, but I was not aware of who she really was.

As I have a mother with enduring love, I had no clue what it must feel like to be Amanda. I prayed for her, which is something I do not often find myself doing, and I hoped that she would find a solution because no one deserved to be in her shoes at that time. A few people within the Twittersphere created her a gofundme account explaining what had happened and it was widely successful. So successful in fact, that a well-known woman from her hometown saw the account and asked Amanda to move in with her. The woman, whose children are already grown, told Amanda that she could stay with her rent-free until she decided to go to college. What a blessing. It’s people like that mother that truly help in times of sadness or struggle. I talk with Amanda still and she is doing well. Last fall Amanda started college at the University of Kentucky, where she is currently enjoying life. Free from the chains of family indoctrination, Amanda can be herself. That’s the way it should be.

The point of all of this is to tell you that Mother’s Day should be a time when you celebrate your mother. Not for her politics or career, but for her love for you. Mother’s Day is not a set holiday to bash a certain political party or decide whether or not which groups deserve praise for being great mothers. Do not EVER allow politics to impact the love you have for your children. Politics are not meant to be taken that seriously, I can promise you that.

If your mother raised, or is currently raising, you to become a successful adult, thank her. Show her how much you appreciate her kindness and compassion, not just yesterday, but every day. Some people do not get the luxury of seeing their mothers whenever they would like to. Some, like Amanda, no longer keep in touch with their biological mothers, and that’s okay. She has a mother in the woman who took her under her wing when she needed it most. As time continues to progress, people will lose their mothers. Don’t be the person that looks back and says you wish you could have done things differently with your child or mother. Time gets away from all of us, you know.

While they may seem annoying sometimes, you only get one mother in life. Remember that.

Love you, Mom!

@RealKyleMorris is a Yellowhammer News contributor and host of The Weekend Briefing that airs noon-2 p.m. Saturdays on 101.1 WDYE