Wednesday, October 29, 2008

'Of the People"

Public Servants Should Remember Who They Serve

I grew up with Davy Crockett as a hero. I still remember the part where he rode through the night to defeat the Indian Bill, a bad piece of legislation that cost him his congressional career for opposing it. Davy Crockett was one of us! There was no question.

Fast forward to 2008 and you have two 'public servants' who let their hair down with their elite buddies and say things like: "You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. … And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Or consider this quote: "One of the things you are going to see is a coalition that is just about completely taken over the Republican Party in this state and if they have their way it’s going to take over state government. It is made up of the Christian Coalition, but not just them. It is made up of the right-to-lifers, but not just them. It’s made up of the NRA, but not just them. It is made up of the home-schoolers, but not just them. It’s made up of a whole coalition of people that have all sorts of differing views that I think most of us in this room would find threatening to what it means to be an American."

You can hear them for yourself Here at the Family Foundation Blog.

Scary stuff! The man responsible for the second quote is running for Senate from the State of Virginia. He's also running spots saying that Senator Obama respects your Second Amendment rights!

Home schoolers, dangerous?, I've had home schoolers work in our model shop and I can tell from the above quote that Mark Warner has far less experience with home schoolers than I do. I've seen fifteen year old kids who've developed professional proficiency and have pretty good heads on their shoulders to boot! I think I'll send Governor Warner a copy of Alvin Schmidt's book Under the Influence. I think there are many spiritual underpinnings to what it means to be an American. I don't think Governor Warner's coctail crowd should be so afraid of us.

In the early Nineteenth Century, Crockett's Tennessee was the Alaska of its day, sitting on the frontier with hostile forces beyond. I'll bet you their were no teenagers working out their angst either. Young people were working the farms and defending them.

So, once again in troubled times, should we look to the frontier for leadership? "You Betcha!"

Model by Kirchman Associates
A fifteen year old home schooler
helped me landscape this model.


You Can See Here How "Bad" America has Been to Reverend Jeremiah Wright

And What of Tony Rezko, Who Put Senator Obama in His Hyde Park Mansion?

The Christian Case Against Barack Obama

Why Isn't Rashid Khalidi Newsworthy?
The Video the LA Times Won't Release

Binyamin Jolkovsky Offers Reward for Release of LA Times Rashid Khalidi Video
At least the folks at Jewish World Review are Curious

Governor Palin Weighs in on Rashid Khalidi Tapes

The Better Health Care Reform Plan

Reality Check from Randy Alcorn

I guess we must now conclude that Home Schoolers are dangerous and Rashid Khalidi isn't!

Thanks to Sarah For America.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Gianna Jessen

A Voice for Those Who Cannot Speak

Gianna Jessen survived an abortion. Now she speaks for the unborn.

Gianna Jessen was on Dr. Dobson's show today. Since the unborn cannot speak for themselves it is a powerful thing to hear from someone who wasn't supposed to live.

Randy Alcorn Has Featured Her Story and it is one we all need to hear. When politicans vote against legislation such as the Born Alive Protection Act, it's important to remember who we're denying protection to.


Senator Obama has promised that the 'first thing he would do as president' would be to sign into law the 'Freedom of Choice act.' Here is A good Discussion of FOCA by Randy Alcorn.
and More Good Discussion from Randy Alcorn. If you are an 'undecided' voter I hope you will take the time to read Randy's thoughts. They are very similar to mine.

Here is a Video by Eduardo Verástegui who starred in Bella.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Thoughts as We Approach the Election

Great Insight!

Randy Alcorn Has These Observations and I share many of the same concerns and desires.

Two Irreconcilable Americas

Once Again, Dennis Prager Nails It!

Two Americas
"Right and the left do not want the same America."

Politicians of all persuasions express a desire to bring Americans together bound by a common vision for the common good. Dennis Prager Points Out the Fallicy of this Reasoning today in Jewish World Review. Really, it's time to admit that there are two different ideologies out there and they are in fierce competition for the heart and soul of the Nation. Without this basic understanding of the conflict it is impossible to understand why it must be debated. Indeed the political manifestation of this conflict is merely the tip of a cultural rift caused by very different world views.

Our founders looked to the order of Judeo-Christian principles as they framed a government based on a balance of tensions that would reign in human tendencies in order to create an orderly society. Individual liberties and individual responsibilities played a large part and government was purposely limited to avoid tyranny. Certain Truths were held to be self-evident. Man was seen as a special creation who bore the mark of his Creator, yet was fallen in nature--often acting along the lines of these baser inclinations. Thus government sought at once to reign the base and give liberty and expression to the higher aspirations of mankind.

The secular humanism that has come to replace a sense of Divine order has given rise to a new paradigm where government, individual liberties and individual responsibilities are re-prioritized. Thus we no longer see the Divine stamp, Imagio Deo, on humanity. On one hand we have created arguments that if man is all there is [no G-d], then man's self-actualization is the main thing. A sense of greater purpose such as that that drove the American Revolution is impossible but we can grab for the highest experiences to justify ourselves. On the other hand, if man is the end of things, then what's so special. The extinction of some rare snail can be elevated above the plight of starving children in Africa. Indeed some radical environmental groups are making that exact argument.

The American left is actually a coalition of many of these often contradictory conclusions and yet they are strongly united in the desire to cast off the "old" constricting beliefs of our forefathers. That is why you will see those who promote the value of free speech in most areas suddenly veer into an irrational supression of religious speech in the public square. The state is now asked to take an even greater role in promoting the well-being of its citizens. The answer must for them be secular, not spiritual. If there is no higher authority it is left to us to pragmatically define and enforce 'virtue.' How else can you explain the fact that after Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac failed from reasons stemming from corruption in government oversight, the answer can only be more government oversight.

Update: One Nation--Invisible,
With Liberty and Justice for All!

The press prematurely calls elections at their own peril.

Monica Crowley Has This Wisdom as we approach the election. The talking heads have already proclaimed a winner--well, they are pretty close to calling it. Ms. Crowley reminds us that they are forgetting someone.

"But there is another group of Americans out there who are quieter, more reserved, but no less proud of THEIR candidate. They are the great SILENT majority. They are Joe the Plumber. They are us." We don't hear from them until November 4th!

Governor Palin Speaks with Dr. Dobson

Update: Train of Thought II

Opposition Means You are Making Progress

Another Cheap Shot at Governor Pain
(thanks to

Here is more evidence that Governor Palin is actually very effective in bringing home a message that some people find distasteful. Nehemiah was distained by his enemies Sanballat, Tobias and Geshem as well.

But in the end, had there been no Nehemiah, there would have been no rebuilt Jerusalem. In fact, Larry Elder, who marches out of step with the popular mindset gives this bit of wisdom:

You have no enemies, you say?
Alas, my friend, the boast is poor;
He who has mingled in the fray
Of duty, that the brave endure,
Must have made foes! If you have none,
Small is the work that you have done.
You've hit no traitor on the hip,
You've dashed no cup from perjured lip,
You've never turned the wrong to right,
You've been a coward in the fight.

— Charles MacKay (1814-1889)

Here are two thought provoking articles by Mr. Elder:

Part 1, Part 2 that everyone should read before the election. Look at a person's record to see if they have what it takes to rebuild anything, or if they are allies with those who seek to tear down!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Great Debate

Dinesh D'Sousa and Christopher Hitchens

Tonight Randy Alcorn had The Debate on his blog [between D'Sousa and Hitchens]. I found it very interesting.

America at Work

The 1904 Saint Louis World's Fair and American Superiority

This Article by Guy Sorman in City Journal caught my eye. In 1904 the robust American economy was recognized as a world leader, but Sorman quotes a study showing the American economy coming into its own by 1820! He goes on to point out how egalitarian American ideals actually created the first mass market. Joseph Schumpeter's “creative destruction” is also mentioned as a reason for economic prosperity as the new constantly replaces the old and the market reallocates resources accordingly.

That translates into new innovative technology and methods. Eventually we'll be driving hydrogen cars and seeing advances in healthcare delivery. Government mandates won't accomplish this, changing economies, innovation and market demand will.

I once did a reconstruction of the Nineteenth Century town of Ellicott's Mills, first terminus of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad outside of Baltimore. The Ellicott Brothers had migrated from Bucks County, Pennsylvania and settled on the banks of the Patapsco River. There they convinced Charles Carroll [the signer of the Declaration of Independence] to diversify his plantation agriculture. They intruduced wheat, flour mills, limestone mining and many other innovations and that is a model of what happened throughout the young Republic.

Our real cultural diversity as a 'Nation of Nations' fuels discovery and innovation. In spite of the professed loathing of so many world rulers for our Nation, the best and brightest still want to come here.

Ellicott's Mills
Ellicott's Mills is typical of many American communities in the Nineteenth Century. Model by Mr. Kirchman.

Sorman points out that the U.S. economy and its spirit of enterprise still set the pace for the rest of the world. We must not invoke change that diminishes that.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Climb Every Mountain

Is it Time to Sing 'Edelweiss' and Head for the Border?

Whe my daughter was growing up we must have watched The Sound of Music a hundred times. I always got a little choked up when Captain Von Trapp sang Edelweiss as a love song to his beloved Austria, knowing he would soon have to flee her. But now I can imagine singing "Oh beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain" with the same sentiment. Consider the following:

The rise of the 'community organizer' from Chicago eerily parallells that of a man who rose in the 1930's to lead the German speaking peoples. You laugh at this, but City Journal speaks of the Obama Shamen phenomenom. Now a video is circulating of school children singing Praises to Obama. Starting to sound eery yet? The video keeps getting taken off of 'You Tube' but the 'Hitler Youth' parallel example can still be found. Scary stuff! Can you blame me for getting nervous as The Reverend Jackson declare that an Obama administration would rid the United States of "Zionist control." Is it wrong to wonder what exactly he means by that? There's no 'flag with the spider on it' but the ubiquitous ''zero' logo that 'reinvents' the American Flag is doing the same thing for me.

Seen at

Lost in the 'Obamamania' is the honest discussion about the role of government. The young senator's voting record clearly favors a more socialist agenda and yet our media assumes at the beginning of the story that this is a good thing Never mind the facts of Frank Raines and the cooked books at Fannie Mae. The 'evil' John McCain tried to stop this trainwreck in 2005 but that is not worth mentioning. After taking ninety million dollars in falsified profits, Raines became an advisor to the Obama campaign. Interestingly enough, the inability to oversee quasi-public corporations means nothing and we want the government to extend its oversight to the private sector without any questions being asked.

While our media eagerly seek s out Todd Palin's driving record they are strangely disinterested in Senator Obama's ties to Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers and his wife, Bernadine Dohrn. Sen. Obama's first campaign for the Illinois Senate began in Mr. Ayers' living room but we're supposed to believe he's 'just a guy in the neigborhood.' Yeah, Right! Those days serving on the Annenberg Challenge together don't count for a thing. Michael Barone Comments Further Here.

Then there is Reverend Jeremiah Wright. His Black Liberation Theology as advanced by James Cone is not exactly the kind of thing that will bring all Americans together. Yet, here again, a twenty year relationship can be denied and the press doesn't bother to go there.

And what of ACORN. It's now coming out that the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now is perhaps engaged in voter registration fraud in eleven states! In my young liberal days we prided ourselves in being a just cause. Now it's just a cause, to be advanced by the worst kind of pragmatism. Finally, CNN is mentioning the voter fraud, but it may be too little, too late. Update: Here is More on ACORN from Pajamas Media and you won't find it on CNN. Hat tips to Here is an Emergency Petition to Congress demanding that voters be required to show identification in order to vote. Be sure to add your name to it. Here, again thanks to Sarah for America: Ties to Kenyan Opposition Leader Raila Odinga. [Must See]!

Finally, there is in Senator Obama's voting record the clear indication that he will advance the agenda of those who would redefine basic social institutions such as marriage and family. He voted against the Infant Born Alive Protection Act. Nat Hentoff, pro-life and disabilities advocate, and First Amendment scholar, is rightfully leery of the 'change' that is being advanced here. Narrowly defining those who are worthy of living is a scary thing to see. Still, in spite of the voting record, there are those who would paint hin as Pro-Life! See This Piece by Dennis Prager for perspective.

As a G-d fearing Christian, pro-life, classic liberal person who loves America, I'm concerned. So I leave you with a love song--and a prayer:

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good
With brotherhood,
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God mend thine ev'ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul
In self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success
In nobleness,
And ev'ry gain divine!

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good
With brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

America the Beautiful
Words By: Katherine Lee Bates, Music By: Samuel A. Ward

Beautiful Spacious Skies

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Crozet World's Fair

Field School Students Build Fantasy Fair

NASA Pavilion at the fair reminds me of the Trylon and Perisphere.

Here are some examples of the 'World's Fair Pavilion' models built by my students at The Field School in Crozet. Some of the pavilions were photographed against the sky to create the impression that they were full scale buildings. I came away from this experience pretty impressed with the creative skills of middle school boys!

Don't you get the feeling of the 1939 New York Fair from some of these pavilions?






Click Here toTour the Fair

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Election is About the Future of the Nation

Dr. Dobson's Letter to America:

Dr. James Dobson
I have long admired Dr. James Dobson, having first learned of his work in the early eighties. His writings on childhood and family issues are well worth reading. Here he lays out a clear picture of the choice that lies before us as a Nation.

October 2008

Dear Friends,

Can you feel the tension in the air? The nation—and indeed, the world—is holding its collective breath as the final days of the presidential campaign wind down and the candidates engage in one last round of electioneering and debating. By this time next month, we’ll know whether Senator John McCain or Senator Barack Obama will be inaugurated in January as the 44th President of the United States.

Considering the stark differences between the two presidential candidates and the critical issues that are hanging in the balance, it’s not difficult to understand why Campaign 2008 has been such a spirited affair. I’d like to take a few moments to consider what is at stake in this year’s election, particularly for those of us who embrace a biblical worldview. Please understand that I will share these thoughts under the umbrella of Focus on the Family Action™, which has supported the preparation and distribution of this letter. Focus Action is, in turn, supported by contributions from those who do not receive tax deductible receipts for them. Thanks so much to you who made it possible.

Let’s start with the need to elect a pro-family, pro-life President. The importance of this objective cannot be overstated. Between 2009 and 2012, there will likely be two or more opportunities for the President to nominate new justices to the Supreme Court. Some court watchers say there could be as many as four resignations. That alone should give us serious pause as we consider for whom to cast our votes. In the months ahead, the Supreme Court will likely hand down rulings that will impact America for generations to come. We need a President who will nominate conservative, strict-constructionist judges to the Court. If that doesn’t happen, the highest court in the land could become stacked—even more than it already is—with justices who will endeavor to legislate from the bench and impose a liberal agenda on the nation. It will likely affect the definition of marriage, religious freedom, and the protection (or lack thereof) of life in the womb.

It’s probably obvious which of the two major party candidates’ views are most palatable to those of us who embrace a pro-life, pro-family worldview. While I will not endorse either candidate this year, I can say that I am now supportive of Senator John McCain and his bid for the presidency. This is not because I am beholden to the Senator from Arizona or to the Republican Party. Anyone who has even a passing familiarity with my views knows that I have agonized at times during this election process, and have been strongly critical of Senator McCain and the Republican Party on numerous occasions. My concern is for the biblical and moral values that I and millions of Americans hold dear. I will gladly support politicians of any stripe who are willing to defend the sanctity of human life, support the institution of traditional marriage, protect the country from terrorism and advance the cause of religious liberty. While certainly not perfect, the 2008 Republican platform comes closest to embracing those ideals by a wide margin.

In recent weeks, I have received some measure of criticism from those who feel that my “change of heart” toward John McCain is unwarranted. I understand those views and concede that the Senator continues to embrace positions that concern me. I don’t apologize, however, for reevaluating our options in this election year. John Maynard Keynes, whose views I have disagreed with strongly, said this about reversing course: “When the facts change, I change my opinion. What do you do, sir?”1 In this instance, Keynes’ perspective is correct. Every thinking person will eventually have reason to change his or her mind as circumstances evolve, as they
have done during this long political ordeal.

There are four primary—and I believe compelling—reasons why I now view the McCain presidential candidacy favorably:

1. During the “Saddleback Forum” on Aug. 16, Sens. Obama and McCain fielded questions from the Saddleback Church pastor Rick Warren. Senator McCain gave very solid and encouraging answers to questions about the sanctity of life and the institution of marriage, whereas Senator Obama came down at the other end of the argument. You will recall the following interchange during the forum:

Pastor Rick Warren: “At what point does a baby get human rights, in your view?”

Senator Obama: “. . . Answering that question with specificity, you know, is, uh, is, above my pay grade.”2

With all due respect, Senator, if this question is above your pay grade, then so is the job attached to it.

2. The Republican Party’s 2008 national platform is a remarkably conservative document.3 Indeed, it is the strongest pro-life platform in the history of the party, surpassing even the pro-life advances of the Reagan years. It was approved and sanctioned by the McCain campaign.

3. Senator McCain selected an astonishingly strong pro-life, pro-family running mate in Governor Sarah Palin. Although he could have embraced a liberal Vice Presidential nominee, such as Senator Joe Lieberman or Tom Ridge, he made the bold decision to join forces with a VP pick whose views reflect those of the party’s conservative base. I’ll discuss Governor Palin’s candidacy in greater detail in a moment.

4. The longer the campaign continues, the more concerned I have become with Barack Obama’s liberal views. Certainly, he is an attractive and very charismatic candidate who has embarked on a campaign of historical proportions. However, the majority of his policies represent the antithesis of principles I hold dear. Senator Obama’s record is more liberal than that of any other Democrat in the Senate4—and that’s saying something! For example, when he was a state senator in Illinois, he voted four times in three years against legislation that would have saved the lives of babies that managed to survive the abortion process.5 The U.S. Senate subsequently passed similar legislation called The Born-Alive Infant Protection Act by unanimous consent.6 (Obama was not a U.S. Senator at the time.) State Senator Obama was chairman of the committee that opposed this protection of babies, and in 2001 and 2002 was the only legislator who rose to argue against the Illinois Born Alive Act.7 That is an undeniable fact! My good friend, former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum published a scathing analysis of Senator Obama’s pro-abortion record earlier this year. Here is an excerpt of what he wrote:

In March 2001, [Senator] Obama was the sole speaker in opposition to the bill on the floor of the Illinois Senate. He said: “We’re saying they are persons entitled to the kinds of protections provided to a child, a 9-month child delivered to term. I mean, it would essentially bar abortions, because the equal protection clause does not allow somebody to kill a child.”8 So according to [Senator] Obama, “they”, (babies who survive abortions or any other preterm
newborns,) should be permitted to be killed because giving legal protection to preterm newborns would have the effect of banning all abortions.9

To further underscore Senator Obama’s radical devotion to abortion rights, he has promised that “the first thing I’d do as president” would be to sign the Freedom of Choice Act.10 The FOCA is a devastating piece of legislation that would overturn nearly every local, state, and federal anti-abortion law passed in the last 40 years.11 In fact, it’s so broadly written that legal analysts suggest the bill may prevent institutions and physicians from refusing to provide abortion services by invoking the conscience clause.

Earlier this year, while talking about sex education and abortion, the Senator said the following: “I’ve got two daughters, 9 years old and 6 years old. I am going to teach them first of all about values and morals. But if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished with a baby.”12 In other words, a pre-born baby is viewed as a form of punishment, and can therefore be murdered in the name of convenience.

It is a matter of historic significance that Barack Obama has become the first African-American to capture the nomination of a major political party for the office of President of the United States. I applaud that remarkable accomplishment. Nevertheless, I cannot support his candidacy because the positions he holds on moral, social and family issues place him at the extreme left of the political spectrum. What the Senator believes and the policies he would seek to implement are on a collision course with the biblical principles and beliefs I have fought to
defend for more than 35 years.

Turning the corner, the significance of Governor Palin to the 2008 presidential race is also worthy of further consideration. Here is a woman who is a deeply committed Christian, and who is pro-life not only with regard to her policies, but in her personal life. She and her husband welcomed their latest child, Trig, into the world even though he was diagnosed with Down syndrome while still in the womb. Approximately 90 percent of babies with Down syndrome are aborted,13 but Governor Palin carried her precious child to term and now loves and cares for him despite the challenges associated with a special needs child. Similarly, her teenage daughter, Bristol, who became pregnant out of wedlock, could have bowed to cultural pressure to seek an abortion. Instead, she and the father plan to get married and raise their child together. Governor Palin has been married for 20 years, and by all accounts, she is a portrait of Christian motherhood and womanhood.

As for Governor Palin’s qualifications to be Vice President of the United States and to assume the mantle of President, should that ever become necessary, she is much better suited for the job than the talking heads on the liberal Left would have you believe. She came out of nowhere to win the Alaskan gubernatorial race against a powerful incumbent. While in office, she bravely fought widespread corruption—including that within her own party—in the face of great opposition.

Govenor Palin’s critics suggest that her experience as mayor of a “small town” is somehow a liability, but it is an asset. In fact, her time as Mayor of Wasilla and then as Governor of Alaska gives her a greater degree of executive experience than Senator Barack Obama can claim. Her qualifications to be Vice President, I would submit, exceed those of Senator Barack Obama, who spent only 143 working days in the U.S. Senate prior to announcing his run for President.14 He authored no significant legislation during that time.

I’m sure you have heard the shrill voices from the political Left decrying Mrs. Palin for any and every reason under the sun. They gloat over the pregnancy of her daughter Bristol and claim itas “evidence” that abstinence education, which Sarah Palin strongly supports, is somehow a sham. They criticize Governor Palin for daring to hold political office and run for Vice President while having a baby at home, even though the Left has for decades supported a woman’s right to do just that. The attacks on Governor Palin and her family in recent weeks have been astonishingly unfair and mean-spirited. If she were a liberal Democrat, she would be praised and lauded for making the same decisions for which she is now being criticized. The double standard is obvious.

Governor Palin’s decision to run for Vice President while raising a baby with special needs has given pause to some conservative voices as well. Some have even questioned my enthusiasm over Governor Palin’s candidacy in light of these circumstances. It’s important to note that although I have often said stay-at-home moms are vitally important to raising the next generation, I have never suggested that it is wrong for mothers to work outside the home. Indeed, Focus on the Family® has hired thousands of mothers over the years. I have said, however, that if a mother is going to enter the workplace, she and her husband must first find a way to meet the needs of their children. Sarah Palin appears to have done that. Todd, her husband, is actively involved in the raising of their children, and it seems obvious that Sarah will continue to be a positive force in her children’s lives even as she carries out her duties in the political arena. Regardless of your political views, may I suggest that the Palins need our prayers, not our disdain, at this critical moment in our nation’s history.

Senator Obama’s selection of fellow liberal Democrat Joseph Biden (Del.) is also extremely revealing. While the National Journal ranked Obama the most liberal Senator last year, Senator Biden was ranked 3rd on their list—just ahead of Vermont’s Bernie Sanders, a self-avowed socialist.15 While the Senator of 36 years from Delaware stands in blatant opposition to the pro-family movement, many of you will remember him from his vociferous opposition to several of our finer Supreme Court justices, namely, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Alito and Thomas.

Returning to our theme, America’s future seems to hang in the balance at this time. Our next President will have a dramatic impact on countless legislative issues. Since being relegated to minority status in 2006, Senate Republicans have skillfully used the rules of parliamentary procedure to frustrate many of the Democrats’ attempts to pass bad legislation. To this point, that effort has almost always been backed by a President who is willing to use the veto pen when necessary. The threat of President Bush’s veto on hate crimes legislation and issues regarding the sanctity of life have kept a Democrat-controlled Congress from implementing its liberal agenda. Will our next President stand up to Congress in the same manner, or will he side with them, thereby giving the Democrats free reign to impose their liberal values on America?

It is likely, say the pundits, that both the House and the Senate in the 111th Congress will still be controlled by Democrats. If that party also takes the White House, a wave of anti-family, pro-homosexual legislation is almost guaranteed to pass in 2009. The bills put forward and advanced this year by Democrats reveal where they want to take the country. For example, they inserted hate crimes language into the 2008 Defense Authorization Bill, but were forced to remove it in conference, again under the threat of veto.16 While in the Illinois Senate, Senator Obama voted for a bill authorizing “comprehensive” sex education beginning in kindergarten. Defenders have attempted to downplay its significance, citing the fact that it called for the content to be “age appropriate” and “medically accurate”—dubious and subjective qualifiers given the sensitive nature of the topic and innocence of the audience!17 (When criticized for supporting this legislation, the Senator was dismissive and said proudly, I quote, “It’s the right thing to do.”18)
Large portions of the agenda promoted by homosexual activists will also be enacted. The implications for a federal hate crimes law are clear. People speaking against homosexuality have already been prosecuted under hate crimes laws both in the United States and abroad. If a federal hate crimes law passes, there will be little to prevent the government from endeavoring to control and curtail religious speech, especially from the pulpit. It is entirely possible that a pastor could be charged with inducing a federal hate crime simply by preaching from one of the many biblical passages that address homosexuality.

Congressional Democrats will also seek to pass the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, meaning businesses will be forced to accept and condone homosexuality —and possibly transgenderism—in making employment decisions. Further, business owners, including religious businesses, will not be able to make hiring and firing decisions based on their religious convictions. Earlier this year, Senator Barack Obama said, “I will place the weight of my administration behind the enactment of the Matthew Shepherd Act to outlaw hate crimes and a fully inclusive Employment Nondiscrimination Act.”19

Finally, I am deeply concerned about the tax and spend policies Senator Obama will impose on the American people if he is elected, especially in light of the current financial crisis. This is not the time to be taking money out of the economy, yet, he has proposed enormous new federal programs and entitlements that will cost multiple billions of dollars. These initiatives cannot be effected without huge increases in taxation on businesses, which will be passed on to the public and to individual families. This will almost certainly require a return of the odious marriage penalty tax that plagued families for 32 years!

The races for the White House and the Congress are hardly the only matters worthy of concern in this election cycle. At the state and local levels, numerous policies and pieces of legislation are being put to a vote, and many of them are directly related to family and moral issues. For example, the definition of marriage is on the ballot in Arizona (Proposition 102), California (Proposition 8) and Florida (Amendment 2). Voters in Colorado will be given the opportunity to expand the definition of “personhood” to include all human beings from the moment of fertilization (Amendment 48). In South Dakota, voters will be asked to ban all abortions except those involving cases of rape and incest, or when the pregnancy seriously jeopardizes the life or physical health of the mother (Measure 11). Michigan is considering whether to legalize embryonic stem cell research, which would result in the killing of tiny human beings. In California, voters will also get the chance to decide whether minor girls should be required to give 48 hours’ notice to a parent or adult relative before having an abortion (Proposition 4). Arkansas voters will decide whether to prevent couples living together out of wedlock—heterosexual or homosexual—from adopting children or serving as foster parents.

These are just a few of the important issues that, depending on which state you live in, will be on the ballot next month. I implore you to spend the few days remaining before the election researching the various amendments, ballot measures, and local and national candidates. Then, exercise your responsibility before God to vote on or before Nov 4. Please, let your voices be heard. For more information, visit Focus on the Family Action’s Web site at Regardless of your political views, I want to urge Christians everywhere to be in prayer about this election. There are many scriptural references wherein King David “inquired of God” when he was faced by troubling circumstances (1 Samuel 23:2,4; 30:8; 2 Samuel 2:1; 5:19,23). It is time for Christians everywhere to turn to Him for guidance and wisdom. Find some time to be still and listen to what He wants to tell you. The National Day of Prayer Task Force, led by my wonderful wife, Shirley, has embarked on a national campaign entitled “Pray for Election Day.” All around the country, individuals and groups are being encouraged to gather every Thursday leading up to Nov. 4 between 12 noon and 12:30 p.m. Spend time with the Lord, asking Him to guide and direct those privileged to cast a ballot. If you are able, I would also encourage you to fast and pray immediately before the election. After all, it was the Reverend Billy Graham who once said that “To get nations back on their feet, we must first get down on our knees.”20 Amen, Dr. Graham.

This election is about the future of the nation, but it will also go a long way toward determining the culture your children and grandchildren will come to know. I know you will vote with your children and your children’s children in mind. That certainly puts the election in a different light, doesn’t it? You know my heart on these issues, and I hope you understand that I am less concerned with politicians and political parties than I am with the timeless biblical principles that those parties have the power to either strengthen or damage. No candidate is perfect, whether in this election or any other. Please don’t make your decisions lightly. There is simply too much at stake. May God grant each of us wisdom as Nov. 4 approaches.


James C. Dobson, Ph.D.
Founder and Chairman

P.S. Since I began researching and writing this letter, the economic meltdown on Wall Street and congressional reaction to it has occurred. These are, indeed, difficult times for American families and businesses. Thank you for continuing to support this ministry, even though in many cases it has required sacrificial giving. You are helping to keep us afloat during this financial crisis, and we appreciate your contribution and prayers more than I can tell you.

Please share this with your friends and family.

1 Louis Uchitelle, “2 Mavericks in Economics Awarded Nobel Prize,” The New York Times, Oct. 12, 2004, (Sept. 29, 2008).
Also: Alfred L. Malabre, Lost Prophets: An Insider’s History of the Modern Economists (1994), p. 220.
(Responding to criticism when changing monetary policy in the midst of the Great Depression.)
2 Saddleback Presidential Candidates Forum, CNN Transcript, Aug. 16, 2008. (Sept. 29, 2008).
3 Republican National Committee, 2008 Republican Platform,
(Sept. 28, 2008).
4 “National Journal’s 2007 Vote Ratings,” National Journal Group Inc., 2008,
voteratings/sen/lib.htm (Sept. 29, 2008).
5 (September 2008).
6 (Sept.
29, 2008).
7 (Sept. 30, 2008).
8 “Obama Blocked Born Alive Infant Protection Act,” Illinois Federation For Right to Life Daily News online,
April 3, 2008, (Sept. 29, 2008).
9 Rick Santorum, “The Elephant in the Room: Why conservatives should support McCain,” The
Philadelphia Inquirer, April 21, 2008,
Room__Why_conservatives_should_support_McCain.html (Sept. 29, 2008).
10 (Sept. 29, 2008).
11 (Sept. 29, 2008)
12 “Ballot Bowl 2008: More Campaign Happenings,” CNN Transcripts, March 29, 2008, transcripts.cnn.
com/TRANSCRIPTS/0803/29/bb.01.html (Sept. 29, 2008).
13 Patricia E. Bauer, “What’s Lost in Prenatal Testing: Why Encourage Testing for Down Syndrome,”
Jan. 14, 2007, Washington Post.
14 “Days in Session Calendars,” Thomas, The Library of Congress,
(Sept. 29, 2008).
15 National Journal online, 2008, Ibid.
16 Paul Kane, “Hill Negotiators Drop Hate-Crime Provision,” Washington Post, Dec. 7, 2007, (Sept. 29, 2008).
17 Byron York, “On Sex-Ed Ad, McCain Is Right,” National Review Online, Sept. 16, 2008, article.
(Sept. 29, 2008).
18 “Obama on Sex Ed in Kindergarten: ‘It’s the Right Thing to Do,’” Free Republic online, Sept. 10, 2008, (Sept. 29, 2008).
19 Michael Foust, “Obama: If elected I will use the bully pulpit for gay causes,” Baptist Press, Feb. 28, 2008, (Sept. 29, 2008).
20 Chuck Spinner, A Book of Prayers: To the Heavens from the Stars, (AuthorHouse: 2008), p. 225, excerpts
online at:
(Sept. 29, 2008).

This letter may be reproduced without change and in its entirety for noncomercial and nonpolitical purposes without prior permisson from Focus on the Family Action.
Copyright © 2008 Focus on the Family Action. All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured. Printed in the U.S.A.

Click Here to Listen to Dr. Dobson Discuss the Upcoming Election

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The One-legged Guy on Old Rag

Hiking the Mountain with His 73 Year Old Father and 8 Year Old Daughter

Here's a Story for You! I saw this on the Hiking Upward Site and just thought it was terrific! Here's a family outing to be inspired by.

Photo from one of my trips to Old Rag.

Divine Order or Random Happening?

Your View of the Creation Affects How You Live

Is it orderly or totally random?

Dostoevsky wrote "Without G-d, all is permitted." Indeed a lot of modern thought seeks to cast off religion as restrictive of human freedom and religion is also blamed for much of society's ills. This Piece by Dennis Prager points out that far from restricting human potential for good, the knowledge of the divine actually curbs our destructive tendencies and historically has allowed for societies to grow and thrive. Our Constitution invokes G-d as the giver of those basic human rights it elaborates and protects.

Dennis Prager's Fourteen Arguments Here are certainly important if we seek to honestly understand our lives and our world.

If G-d is involved in creation, life is a purposeful journey and His mileposts should be visible in inspired writings.

If the Almighty Doesn't Exist, Prager points out the ultimate tragedy and despair that come from a G-dless worldview. Take note what happens in the arts.

At the turn of the Century some of our country's greatest works of art and architecture were created. The 'White City' of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair inspired a nation to high ideals. Prager points out the post-modern artistic works reject outright that sense of order, beauty and truth. I was quite moved by Ravi Zacharias' description of his experience visiting the first post-modern building in America. The building had stairways going to no particular place that ended in mid-air, walls placed out of context as were windows and doors. Roof planes were broken in arbitrary fashion. Zacharias had this one question: "Did he [the architect] take similar liberties with the foundation as well?"

In a world where many conflicting philosophies present themselves, some claiming that the door is not a door and order is unimportant, that's a fair question.

A scene from the 1893 Columbian Exposition, the Chicago World's Fair.