Category

Defense of Family

CWA Attends Announcement of New HHS Division: Conscience and Religious Freedom

By | Blog, Defense of Family, Legislative Updates, News and Events, Religious Liberty | No Comments

This week, members of the CWA staff were invited to a special event at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announcing a new division on Conscience and Religious Freedom in HHS’s Office of Civil Rights.  Caroline Aderholt, CWA’s Chief of Staff, was the only non-speaker who was invited behind the scenes to join the speakers and influencers, including the acting Secretary of HHS, Members of Congress and Senators.

This new division will specialize in enforcement and compliance with laws that protect conscience and the free exercise of religion and that prohibit coercion and discrimination. Specifically, this division will deal with conscience objections of healthcare workers who are forced to perform or participate in an abortion in violation with their deeply held beliefs. Additionally, this new division will also focus on the increasing issue of protecting the conscience rights of healthcare workers who object to participating in the gender reassignment process.

This was the result of hard work from so many behind the scenes to emphasize the importance of conscience protection. Thanks to the hard work of our team and the pro-life coalition, the Trump Administration has taken this unprecedented step to protect those who just want to follow their conscience.

Playboy and the Way of the World

By | Blog, Defense of Family, Sexual Exploitation | No Comments

It is the way of the world that corporations tend to be corrupted as each successive generation takes control. Sometimes men start companies with all the best intentions, eschewing the making of a cheap buck for the sake of their principles. This tends to be something their children fail to understand, or it at least tends to be discounted in favor of getting dad to go a different direction to increase the company’s bottom line. But oftentimes, dad won’t budge. The company will operate as he sees it — as his vision dictates … until he dies. Then, without their father to stand in the way, the children turn the company down darker paths and make darker alliances. In the case of a company that’s already bad, well, things get worse.

In the case of Playboy — while Hugh Hefner’s dead body was still warm — the floundering magazine for “men” introduced its first transgendered playmate. (Links are for sourcing purposes only. Let the curious be forewarned.)

Let that sink in for a moment. They went from the exploitation of women, to the exploitation of a man who feels like a woman. Playboy has definitely taken a darker turn, coming down on the side of sexual confusion. But then, the whole empire was built on sexual confusion as a founding principle. “The human body is beautiful. There’s nothing wrong with that; no one is getting hurt. This is empowering to women.”

Really? Then why do we have a #MeToo culture? Why do we have porn addicts assaulting children in libraries, Target stores, and elsewhere across this porn-soaked planet? Why is the FBI rescuing a five-year-old girl and her three-month-old sister from a sex trafficking ring? Who really gets empowered in all this — and who gets fooled into believing they’re empowered? Sex and sexuality as a tool of empowerment is absolute confusion. It is used by the Hefners and Weinsteins of the world to control and exploit.

But God never intended sex as a tool or weapon. He never created a harem — virtual or otherwise. He created us male and female. One man and one woman in the beginning. God instituted one man/one woman marriage, and by extension that means a man should only really see his wife’s body and she his. Every Playboy playmate — and every woman caught in the web of lies that is pornography — is offered up as an opportunity for every man to look at the body of a woman who is, or has the potential to be, someone else’s wife. And that fits perfectly the Lord’s definition of adultery.

Playboy has, for years, tried to tell men what kind of body shapes they should find attractive. That effort has been mimicked to softer — but no less insidious — degrees by the marketing industry. The trickledown effect has been monumentally destructive for young girls, who see the thin, busty models and then look at their still-developing bodies and well up in a rage and hatred that points inward and warps their sense of self, playing out in eating disorders and other forms of self-harm.

On top of those unrealistic expectations — because, let’s be real, every image in Playboy is heavily Photoshopped — our daughters have to contend with porn-soaked boys, who look at Playboy and worse, and expect girls to be the easy, slutty porn princesses of their lurid, little dreams.

The #MeToo culture isn’t going anywhere, because sexual predators will continue to feed on Playboy and the rotten fruits of the industry it spawned, until they are no longer sated by mere images and venture out into the real world for victims.

This latest envelope pushing by Playboy shows that they’re not done yet — that they’re willing to sink deeper into sexually deviant realms. Their callous disregard for women, under the guise of empowerment, simultaneously sickens me and chills me to the bone.

I fear for my daughter. I fear for my sons. And I fear for an America that has turned from the Lord to engage in such a twisted, base worship of the human form. God help us all.

If You Just Believe

By | Blog, Defense of Family, News and Events | No Comments

During the holiday season, there seem to be signs that say “Believe” at every turn. This became popular after the 2004 Christmas movie Polar Express and the theme song “Believe” by Josh Groban. Since then, even Macy’s department store uses “Believe” as part of their theme and advertisements.

But, this saying goes back much further than that. More than 2,000 years ago, Jesus’ mother, Mary, went to visit Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist. At the time, Elizabeth was in her 80s and pregnant with her son. Mary was also pregnant with baby Jesus. When Mary greeted Elizabeth, the baby in Elizabeth’s womb leaped for joy. These two women who were both miraculously pregnant experienced a divine moment with their two unborn babies in their wombs!

Then Elizabeth said to Mary, “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her!” (Luke 1:45) The Christmas story began with the word “Believe”! Elizabeth had to believe that she could conceive her promised child in her old age with a barren womb. And Mary had to believe the angel Gabriel when he told her that she would have a Child by the power of the Holy Spirit and that He would be the Son of God. Without faith, neither one of these two women would have been able to give birth to their promises!

This Scripture would encourage me many times throughout the years as I prayed that God would bring the right man of God into my life. Years would come and go, and sometimes it was very difficult to believe and keep the faith. The holiday season would be the most difficult time of the year for many reasons. One reason was because, like most women, I wanted to have someone special in my life with whom to share this beautiful time of year. It was also difficult, because the holidays always mark the end of another year — a year that I hoped would be “the year” when my prayers would be answered and God’s promises for my life would be fulfilled. However, each year ended with a sense of disappointment without the promise coming to pass.

As a result, believing and keeping the faith seemed to be the hardest thing to do at times. As Proverbs 13:12 says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.” Hoping and believing year after year for something that seems so out of reach has that effect on us. Longing for something we don’t have can make us very heartsick. At times, we just want to give up on hoping and believing. Zechariah 9:12 says this state is being a “prisoner of hope.” It’s a place where we’ve hoped and prayed for so long, and we know we can’t give up now. Yet, continuing to hope and believe for one minute longer seems to be the most painful and difficult thing to do.

Year after year, this went on — for about 20 years. Eventually, I finally came to a place where I felt more content than I ever had before, by God’s grace. Maybe the dream died; I’m not sure. But I was thankful that it wasn’t as painful to be unmarried somehow. I still believed God had someone for me, but it wasn’t always at the very forefront of my mind.

Then, suddenly, my prayers were answered, and the promise was fulfilled! Last December, a special relationship began to blossom with a widower who is also a minister. He was the kindest and most loving man I had ever met! Exactly nine months later, on September 4, 2017, we were married. Just as a woman is pregnant for nine months, as Mary and Elizabeth were, the promise was born! It’s interesting that our relationship began around the time of year that was always the hardest for me. Somehow I don’t think that was a coincidence. God is so faithful and good!

When going through hard times and living through unanswered prayers, the enemy of our souls would want us to become depressed and discouraged during this time of year. But, I share this story with you to encourage you: Don’t stop believing for whatever you are waiting on the Lord to do. As we enter the New Year, purpose in your heart to keep the faith and put all your hope and trust in the Lord. And in due time, He promises you will also see the best answer to your prayers … just BELIEVE! He will work all things together for your good!

What happened when the left thought I would be joining the Trump Administration

By | Blog, Defense of Family, News and Events, Religious Liberty, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

A couple of years ago, while appearing on CNN with Van Jones, former Obama Administration Special Adviser for Green Energy, he shared something personal.

In a moment of transparency, the Yale-educated lawyer said that the public smearing he received during his tenure as the Green Energy Czar “felt like someone ripped off [his] face and put it on someone else’s body.”  He said he didn’t recognize the person they were describing in press accounts.

Conservatives had little to no sympathy for him or others, but recent events have hopefully shed a different light on the matter.

Confirmation hearings are becoming something of a blood sport when the nominees are people who adhere to orthodox Christian views on abortion and matters of sexual identity.

First, there was Russell Vought, President Trump’s nominee for Deputy Director of Office of Management and Budget.  Sen. Bernie Sanders’ questioned his Christian faith and belief in the centrality of Jesus Christ for salvation, suggesting basically that his belief makes him unfit for office.  Then there was “the Dogma lives loudly within you” remark to Judge Amy Coney Barrett by Sen. Diane Feinstein denigrating the Notre Dame Law  Professor and mother of seven’s Catholic faith.  The senator’s outrage was based on an article that basically said the opposite of what was charged.

What is happening? Not since the JFK days has there been such hostility to faith.  Sadly, back then it was from Protestants, but this is a new, equally insidious version from the left.

The final awakening on this issue came to Concerned Women for America due to Washington rumors of my “imminent” appointment to the office of Ambassador-At-Large for the Office of Global Women’s Issues. This is a position that was created by Secretary Hillary Clinton to assist with the advancement of women’s equality and the empowerment of women and girls around the world.

The ensuing outrage from the left was eye-opening. At the mere hint of the idea that a pro-life, conservative woman could be in the running opened up a flood of hostile and, in many cases, false or misleading articles written by leftist media.

Suddenly, the idea of “fake news” took on new meaning.  Left-of-center reporters mostly relied on an opposition research dossier which quotes formerly-affiliated employees from CWA — much of which was dated years before my tenure — accepted without checking false statements by abortion activists, or, worse yet, isolated quotes out of context, much like in the case of Judge Barrett.

Just to name a few:

They claim we oppose birth control, when in truth CWA, and I personally, like the majority of Evangelical women, draw a bright line between birth control and abortion. We have never taken a position against it, but we do support the rights of conscience of women like the Little Sisters of the Poor.  The Left, however, wishes to force everyone, even nuns who take a vow of celibacy and poverty, to fund abortion and abortion-inducing drugs.  Their lack of tolerance for women of faith is shocking.

They claim that we never support rape-and-incest exceptions; this is one in which they twisted a theological piece that I wrote for the Christian Post.  The truth is that every child is innocent.  I value every child and her mother and addressed in that piece that abortion harms the woman as well as her child.  I believe women deserve better, and as the church, we must offer them better options.

As the survivor of an assault and attempted rape, I know that this issue is deeply painful and complicated, and suffering women deserve our help and grace.

I believe that abortion is the most cynical answer to the plight of women, but the left sees it as the first and best response.

The story of women who regret their abortions is prevalent.  Pro-life Americans offer love and hope to women every day in pregnancy help centers, through adoption and through material help. Regardless, in the very piece they criticized, I end by saying, “Regardless of her choice, we must pray for her!”

As a practical matter, every federal legislative effort and most state bills endorsed by CWA contain rape and incest exceptions.  I also addressed this in my book, if people had bothered to look.

“ … I should add however that I have and do support legislation that contains a rape-incest exception if it is essential to protect the vast majority of babies.  Public policy is downstream of public opinion, and we still have work to do.” (Feisty and Feminine, 89)

They falsely claim we support the criminalization of homosexuality or transgenderism, when in truth, I have never believed it and said the opposite specifically in my book.  We can disagree on matters of policy for our military or our schools, but we are called to love our neighbor, and that includes our LGBTQ neighbors.

“Condemning unkindness is not a religious or political stance; it is a human one, and our message transcends those divisions. This means that we condemn liberal attacks against Christian and conservative views; but it also means that we must take a stand against nastiness toward gay people or any group for that matter. We absolutely must condemn countries operating under sharia law where homosexuality is a crime punishable by death. In Nigeria in early 2015, fourteen men were dragged from their beds and attacked by men with clubs and iron bars who said they wanted to ‘cleanse’ their neighborhood of gay people. And who could forget the video of ISIS pushing a gay man off of a roof to his death in Mosul, Iraq? We have to speak out against these kinds of atrocities, and against governments that condone them. Violence of any kind has no place among those who seek peace, and as followers of Christ, it is our duty to stand up against this kind of injustice. We need to condemn violence abroad as well as here in the United States. But even short of violence, we need to consider whether we do what’s right when people say something unkind about gay or transgender people and those who don’t share our opinions or lifestyles. Because here’s the problem: people practicing these lifestyles can’t hear our words of love and hope when we are allowing other people to define us,” (From my book, Feisty & Feminine, Page 70).

They claim that CWA and I oppose the Violence Against Women Act when in truth we have criticized its efficacy. We suggested that there needs to be better oversight ending the waste and fraud by grantees and instead that the federal offer block grants to the states in order to address what even supporters admit is too broad to be effective. (From my book “Feisty & Feminine,” Page 44)

The left is fine with spending $400 million per year on programs that aren’t doing enoughto protect women.  Just because the bill is named well doesn’t mean it is stopping domestic violence. Again, women deserve better.

They claim that I do not support anti-bullying efforts against children who identify as LGBTQ.  That is 100 percent false.

In the piece that sparked the hatred, I said, “I despise children being bullied for being ‘gay’ just as much as for being obese or for being from another country or simply being different or for whatever reason. How about we teach our kids, ‘Be ye kind one to another.’”

In my book, I went further. While I absolutely support an end to any and all forms of bullying, I can’t help but notice how ironic it is that conservative Christian kids in our school system are bullied for their own beliefs. What are our schools doing to protect them? (“Feisty & Feminine,” 56)

And just to be clear (despite this being the height of silliness), I don’t hate “Frozen.”

Interestingly, reporters conveniently left out all of my lifelong work caring for “the least of these” on issues like fighting sex trafficking and fighting for cleaning up the horrible backlog of testing for rape kits (“Feisty & Feminine,” Page 46-48).

I also worked with others to successfully pass into law the Second Chance Act (Public Law 110-199), which tears down barriers for prisoners reentering society.  As a member of Right on Crime, I am working for restorative justice reform, including the use of drug and youth courts and access to mental health care.

But let’s be honest, it does not matter what I say or what I believe. The left must twist my words, because at the end of the day, a pro-life woman with an orthodox Christian worldview is unacceptable to them.

It is becoming a common theme in confirmation hearings. Both the Republicans and Democrats are guilty of demagoguery as Van Jones suggested, and it needs to stop.

Now, to address the rumor of an appointment to the Trump administration: The honest answer is that there is great appeal to the idea of working for President Trump and the opportunity to work on behalf of women around the globe.

It is my hope that under President Trump the Office of Global Women’s Issues will stand for the rights of women to seek fulfillment of their basic needs, to feed and clothe themselves and their children, to fully participate in society, and to be defended against human rights abuses such as violence, killing, discrimination, and false imprisonment. As full participants in society, women should have the agency to pursue education and economic livelihood and to vote or run for office.

There is clearly work to be done. American conservatives often view the world through the lens of our own experience, forgetting that there are millions of women and girls around the world denied basic human rights and treated by their government or culture as literally second class citizens facing discrimination at every turn.

I would be honored to serve my nation and President Trump; however, I do not feel God is leading me to leave Concerned Women for America at this time. We have important work to do and are in a season of amazing growth.  Most importantly, I have about 18 months left before my last child goes off to college.

In Washington, ones family is often used as an excuse, but I can assure I am sincere. My husband and I, like most parents, have subjugated our own desires in many ways to do our best to parent.

I do not believe that it would be right for me or for him to travel the world during this season of our lives. Others may be able to do so with aplomb, but we cannot.

There may be a time at which President Trump or some other president will call upon me to serve my country within his or her administration at a later season.

The left can relax for now, but who knows about another day? But know this, if it is ever God’s will for me to serve, nothing they can do or say will stop it.

Editor’s Note: A version of this article was published by Fox News. Click here to read it.

Safe at Home Act

By | Blog, Defense of Family, Press Releases, Sexual Exploitation | No Comments

Washington, D.C. — Today, Senators Blunt (R-Missouri) and Klobuchar (D-West Virginia) held a press conference to introduce the Safeguarding Addresses from Emerging (SAFE) at Home Act, also known as the Safe at Home Act. This legislation would protect survivors of domestic violence by allowing them to use their substitute address provided by their state Address Confidentiality Program when interacting with the federal government, thereby protecting their privacy and safety.

Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, had this to say:

“I am grateful for Sens. Blunt and Klobuchar taking the lead in the Senate to defend survivors of domestic violence by sponsoring the Safe at Home Act.

“This legislation will significantly add to the security and emotional well-being of survivors of domestic abuse, sexual assault, and other similar crimes. For decades, states have used address confidentiality programs to protect these survivors. It is time for the federal government to work with these programs to further ensure their protection.

“Survivors of abuse should be able to interact with the federal government without fear of being re-exposed to their abuser. They should have the freedom to apply for a passport or student aid without fearing for their safety.

“Concerned Women for America looks forward to championing the Safe Home Act in the Senate and seeing it garner the widespread, bipartisan support it deserves.”

For an interview with Penny Nance contact Annabelle Rutledge at [email protected] or 916-792-3973.

Capitol Hill Brief — Supreme Court Brief

By | Blog, Capitol Hill Brief, Defense of Family, Religious Liberty | No Comments

 

Last week, Concerned Women for America submitted an amicus brief (which is just a fancy way of saying a “friend-of-the-court” brief) in a very important First Amendment case before the U.S. Supreme Court.  The name is Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.

This is the case where a Christian baker is being forced to use his artistic talents to help celebrate same-sex “marriage,” in violation of his deeply held religious beliefs, by designing a custom-made wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

For the government to compel speech in this manner, under threat of law, is a violation of both freedom of speech and religious liberty.  Would you help us pray for this important case?


It’s vital that president Trump knows he has our support in fighting for conservative, Christian values. Please sign the open letter at www.CapitolHillBrief.org and express your support of his administration’s protection of religious freedom. If you’d like to hear these commentaries on the radio, find me on your local radio station.

 

Do Transgender Rights Trump Women’s Rights? The Left Needs to Decide

By | Blog, Defense of Family, News and Events | No Comments

As the Left have attempted to stake their claim as the only group who represents and cares about women, they have also managed to simultaneously stab these same women in the back, betraying the very essence of their femininity and steamrolling over the uniqueness of the sexes in order to elevate their own agendas.

The debate over the role of transgendered individuals (people who identify as one gender but have the anatomy of another), has risen again in recent weeks, with President Trump’s declaration that transgendered individuals will no longer be able to serve in the military. It will no doubt continue to be a hot debate as the culture wars rage on. The issue of gender dysphoria is real and painful and we must have love and compassion for them.

But I fear they are being politically and monetarily used as the Left, always looking for a new group to exploit, opens new fronts in the culture wars.  Feminists should wonder, however, that if we reconstruct male and female to sixty-three and growing definitions, who is protected and who is hurt? Does this new idea of no binary definition of gender displace and demean the hard fought and won accomplishments of women?

I think yes. Consider the issue of women’s sports. When men are allowed to compete as women, women lose no matter how hard they work.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 was crafted to ensure that female athletes were not left out of sports and created a level playing field which encouraged excellence in competition. Congress and feminists understood that boys and girls are physiologically different and that boys vs. boys and girls v. girls was fair because of basic biological and hormonal differences.

Title IX has nothing to do with character, power, or intelligence.

Fast forward to 2016, when a boy identifying as a girl qualified for the Alaska State Championships in the 200-meter dash, displacing a female athlete for third place. The senior competed against girls as young as freshmen. Hardly fair.

In June of this year, a boy identifying as a girl was allowed to compete on the female high school track team in Connecticut and was lauded for placing first in two races. His time would have placed him last in the same races in the boys division.

Colleges offer sports scholarships for both genders based on high school accomplishments. But now, these scholarships have the potential to be monopolized by boys in both male and female categories.

Last month, it was announced that for the first time since all combat roles were opened to women in December of 2015, there are two female candidates in the Navy SEAL and Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewman program (SWCC) programs.

This watershed moment for women in the military has the merit to stand alone, but instead, the news story went on to undercut the success of these two women by saying that, in fact, the first woman to join an elite Navy force could be a transgender woman who came out in 2016.

Sports titles have been stripped from women, and military achievements by women are being given to men, but surely women can maintain their right to privacy and their respect as child-bearers, right? Wrong.

The women’s bathroom is no longer a secure place for women and children to go for privacy. Security is not so narrow as to imply only physical safety, it also encompasses emotional safety. The women’s bathroom is a place where women are vulnerable. To have a man present, no matter his self-perception, compromises that vulnerability. Talk about a need for safe spaces.

As if this is not enough, the Huffington Post highlighted a transgender individual holding a sign that read, “Periods are not just for women” while flaunting blood-stained pants between spread legs. If not so horrifying and disrespectful, it would be comical. Of course, periods are just for women and most of us have more dignity than to flaunt them for a political stunt.

By using a woman’s menstrual cycle, which indicates her unique role as a foundational creator and nurturer of life, these activists betray women and use her for cheap political props. This is an attack on a woman’s amazing biological ability to bear and give birth to children.

This is gender appropriation – stealing something precious that distinctly belongs to women, demeaning it, and distorting its purpose. Historically, women have fought to defend and protect their position and authority within society. Our spaces and institutions have value and therefore deserve respect and protection from encroachment of the entitled Left.  The emperor has no clothes and our pretending otherwise only degrades women.

Capitol Hill Brief — Persist in the Fight for the Family

By | Blog, Capitol Hill Brief, Defense of Family | No Comments

 

According to U.S. Census Bureau, an estimated 24.7 million children live without their biological father. Sadly, this disproportionately affects minority communities.

And the effects of this reality are heartbreaking: Children in father-absent homes are almost four times more likely to be poor.  They’re more likely to abuse drug and alcohol, have physical and emotional health problems and more than twice as likely to commit suicide.

This is why we must persist in our support for marriage and families.

During our Summer of Persistence, Concerned Women for America recommits to founding principles that have sustain our freedom throughout our nation’s history.  Please join in!


Now is not the time to resist; it is the time to persist.  This summer, find out how you can support a positive agenda that protects our Biblical values. Visit www.CapitolHillBrief.org today. If you’d like to hear these commentaries on the radio, find me on your local radio station.

 

President Trump to Reverse Transgender Military Policy

By | Defense of Family, News and Events, Press Releases | No Comments
Washington, D.C. – Today President Trump tweeted that after meeting with his Generals and military experts that transgender individuals would no longer be serving in any capacity in the U.S. Military. This reverses a policy which had previously been instated by the Defense Department under the previous administration in which the United States Federal Government was projected to pay millions of dollars in gender-reassignment surgeries.

Read More