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Under President Trump, the U.S. Returns to Honoring Life Globally

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

One of the things President Donald Trump should be most proud of from his short time in the White House is his decision to move the U.S. away from the hideous business of promoting abortion-on-demand around the world.

On Jan. 23, 2017, just three days after his swearing-in ceremony, President Trump reinstated what has been known as the “Mexico City Policy” (because of its roots at a population conference in Mexico City). The policy, initiated by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, to the delight of most Americans, prohibits U.S. taxpayer dollars from going to organizations that perform or actively promote abortion as a method of family planning abroad.

Big Abortion, of course, despises the policy…

Read the rest of this op-ed as featured exclusively on AmericanThinker.com.

How long, O Lord?

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events, Planned Parenthood, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

Most times I am outraged, really incensed, at the evil that is abortion.  I get angry at the debasement of the very image of God.  The way outside forces prey on vulnerable women for their personal and corporate profit.

Sometimes a sense of the reality of the sin we are committing as a nation weighs in on me.

But not today. Today, I fight to hold back tears (as I write in a public place).  Today, after watching the latest Center for Medical Progress video, I feel such pain for the people (educated professionals) that are part of this dark industry.

Here is the video:
[Editor’s note: the original video has now been removed from YouTube (they don’t want the truth to be heard!). Here we provide a shortened version still available through Twitter posts]

I want to be furious.  I want to be enraged.  It would be an appropriate response to such callousness—such cold, raw disregard for life, fragility and love.  These poor babies are thought about as “pointy skulls.”

I want to cry out to God, as the psalmist did, “How long, o Lord?”  I feel this irrational desire to pray as Jesus did on the cross, “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they do.”  But my heart sinks deeper still as I ponder that they do.  They do know exactly what they do.

And they do it anyway.

They do it with glee.  They discuss it between wine and giggles.  They make a living from it.

How long, o Lord?

How long will you and I, friend, turn a blind eye to this evil?  How long will you and I dismiss it as someone else’s problem?  How long will we pretend to fight injustice somewhere else, while we perpetrate an injustice of the harshest kind on our most vulnerable?

How long will we compartmentalize and rationalize what is plain for all of us to see?  A vulnerable baby, sacrificed at the altar of self? How long will we allow our court to push this evil on us?  How long will we allow laws making it possible to stand?

How long will we continue to support and promote the evil of abortion with our own money?

Oh yes, we can try to con ourselves into thinking we have no part in it, but the heart-cutting truth is that we all support this with our own money.  My money, your money makes conferences like the one we just saw in this video possible.

Our money pays for them to get together to discuss the harvesting and selling of baby body parts.

Let that sink in.  We are not guiltless (ok, forget about holding back the tears now).

We are not innocent.  We live our lives, every day under this horrid cloud.  We wake up, eat, drink, work, have time with family, even worship in our churches under this national cloud.

O Lord, how long?

Still, we do not despair.  That would be too easy.  No, we must renew our strength and set upon the hard, tedious, inconvenient task of exposing this infringement on our most basic right.  We must expose the painful, virulent nature of abortion.  We must repent.

That is why we must be so grateful for the work of people like David Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress.  Their incredible sacrifice has ignited the moral conscience of many, and we will continue to take that work to the ends of the world until this evil is eradicated everywhere it is found.

If you are pro-choice, I plead with you to consider the reality of what is in front of you as you watch this video.  Forget about what you have been told and just consider what you are seeing, what you are hearing.  Are you okay with that?

We can do better than this.  We can be a compassionate people, a loving people.  Let us love one another then.  Let us love our daughters, so that they may never even come close to feeling a need to put themselves at the mercy of one of these exploiters.

May God grant us the wisdom and will to put an end to abortion once and for all.

Manchester Reminds Us the Church Must Be Engaged

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events, Religious Liberty | No Comments

At least 22 died yesterday and another 120 more were injured (so far) after a bomb detonation at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England.  It is an incredible tragedy.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families, and they are also against the forces of evil behind this attack.

We often refer to these attacks as “senseless” acts of violence, and though I sympathize with the sentiment, truth is they are nothing of the sort.  As we have come to expect, ISIS has now claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing.  These attacks are purposeful, encouraged, and driven by an ideology with tangible goals.

World governments must fight back against it in terms of their political and territorial aspirations.  But this enemy cannot be defeated through these efforts alone.  Their goals are primarily spiritual, and that is why the Church is so important.

As Paul reminded us in 2 Corinthians 10, “[T]hough we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.  The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds” (NIV).

Our spiritual weapons can attack what military forces can’t — the ideology. Verse 5 of that 10th Chapter in 2 Corinthians reminds us, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (NIV).

It is a battle of ideas that manifests itself in these acts of violence.  Therefore, destroying the ideas, demolishing their arguments, is how true victory against this evil group can be attained.

So, there is an ironic twist to this.  We, as the Church of Jesus Christ, must take a look at ourselves, instead of ISIS.  It is we who must focus on the basic principles of our faith.  Take on that full armor of God (Ephesians 6) to be ready and able to war against the devil’s schemes.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms,” Paul reasoned (Ephesians 6:12, NIV).

He commanded us to put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the boots of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit.

But we have slacked off on Paul’s exhortation.  The belt of truth has been gone for so long, even our trousers have been lost, leaving only our shame.  We’ve forgotten the definition of righteousness altogether.  A watered-down Gospel is preached in order to make it palatable to the new generation.  The shield of faith?  We’ve used each other as shields ever since “believe in yourself” has become our motto.  The helmet of salvation has become more of a baseball cap, easily blown by the slightest wind.  And we’ve traded our antiquated swords of the Spirit (which is the Word of God, according to Paul) at the local pawn shop for a more practical spirituality that fits our lifestyle.

It is impossible to fight (much less win) the spiritual battle before us in such a sad state.

Let us turn back to our God then.  For He is “merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love” (Psalm 103:8 ESV).

Let us go back to the Scriptures.  Let us go back to love.  Back to obedience.

The passage in 2 Corinthians 10 concludes with that exhortation: “[W]e will be ready to punish every act of disobedience, once your obedience is complete” (verse 6).  Once our obedience is complete.

This can be accomplished through prayer which Paul does not forget as he completes the description of the full armor of God: “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people,” (Ephesians 6:18, NIV).

I pray our Christian convictions will impress on us these important principles of our Christian faith, that we may remind each other in the days ahead as we prepare ourselves to deal with the next “Manchester.”

Concerned Women for America Celebrates Justice Gorsuch

By | LBB, Legal | No Comments

Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) CEO & President, was at the White House Rose Garden to witness and celebrate the swearing in of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court.  President Donald J. Trump’s invitation to the solemn occasion is an honor and a true testament of the marvelous work you, our CWA leaders and members, did to support such an honorable candidate.

Justice Gorsuch’s record gives us great hope and confidence that he will perform his duties in a manner worthy of the incredible position he has received.  In a moving part of his speech, he acknowledged the Scalia family with these wonderful words: “To the Scalia family, I won’t ever forget that the seat I inherit today is that of a very, very great man.”

He also had some words for us all:

[T]o the American people, I am humbled by the trust placed in me today. I will never forget that to whom much is given, much will be expected. And I promise you that I will do all my powers permit to be a faithful servant of the Constitution and laws of this great nation.

The wisdom Justice Gorsuch cites comes from Scripture (Luke 12) and this is greatly encouraging.  That is the wisdom he will need as he takes on the gargantuan challenge before him now.

Concerned Women for America commits to continue to lift Justice Gorsuch in prayer, as we do all of the Justices.

May “God save the United States and th[e] Honorable Court.”

Gorsuch a Justice

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events | No Comments

You did it.  The U.S. Senate has just confirmed Judge (now Justice) Neil Gorsuch to be the 113th Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.  This is great news for all Americans, whatever their political affiliation.

Justice Gorsuch is the type of judge who will strive for judicial restraint and has demonstrated he respects the Constitution as written.  This is all we can hope for in a Justice of the Supreme Court.

He was confirmed by a bipartisan majority 54-45.  The 45 voting against him played to their extreme, radical base, but they failed miserably to present any credible evidence that their vote was a sincere reflection of Judge Gorsuch’s record.  It was shameful to see them behave in this way.

Still, Justice Gorsuch is on to the Supreme Court and reports tell us he will be ready to tackle the important cases that are set to come before the court this month.  Let us continue to keep him and his family in prayer.

A lot of the credit of this nomination has to go to President Donald Trump for keeping his promise and nominating someone in the mold of the late, great Justice Scalia.  Also to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) who led the senate through a flawless process that ultimately got us such a qualified nominee on the court.

Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) CEO & President, thanked them both on behalf of CWA members around the country in her statement:

On behalf of our members, I want to thank Leader McConnell, as well as Sen. Grassley, for their decisive leadership, which gave the American people a voice in November on the kind of justice they believed should fill the Supreme Court vacancy.

I also want to thank President Trump for keeping his promise to nominate a constitutionalist judge to the Supreme Court. It is hard to imagine someone better suited to serve on our nation’s highest court than Judge Gorsuch.

Bottom Line, The Right Thing Will Happen: Gorsuch Will Be Confirmed

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events | No Comments

The 24/7 media cycle made this much more dramatic than it needed to be, but the bottom line is Judge Neil Gorsuch will be confirmed as the next Justice of the Supreme Court.

The radical left was mad about many things (Trump, Garland, etc.), but their objections to Judge Gorsuch never passed the laugh test.

So, as predicted, the majority of the Democrats (though not all) foolishly and unnecessarily decided to deploy the first partisan filibuster in U.S. history.  But it was all for nothing, his confirmation will go through to the final vote.

Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America’s CEO & President, said, “The left needs to respect the American peoples’ choice in November and start listening to their constituents instead of special interests.”

The senate, therefore, is scheduled to have the final vote on his nomination on Friday, following the 30 hours of required debate.  That will put the vote, sometime around 7:00 p.m. (earlier if Democrats yield back time).

This development also opens the door for Judge Gorsuch to be seated on the court for oral arguments in a couple of weeks (the week of April 17) when some important decisions will be heard, including a very important religious liberty case.

Let us pray for Judge Gorsuch as he prepares to very quickly deal with such important issues.

Gorsuch Appointment Needed to Guard Our Liberties

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events | No Comments

As Senate Democrats continue their childish pouting over the inevitable confirmation of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, a new decision by the Seventh Circuit reminds us why the nomination of Judge Gorsuch is crucial to guarding our liberties for years to come.

Before I tell you more about that decision, I will remind you that today is the day the Senate will go “nuclear.” The vote on the cloture motion will be happening around 11:00 a.m. (EST).  And this is where we expect Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) will be forced to deploy the “nuclear” or “constitutional” option that will end the debate with 51 votes, so that we may finally have a vote for confirmation (on Friday after the required 30 hours of debate have passed).

But back to the Seventh Circuit decision that reminds us what’s at stake.  I will spare you the details of the case for now (I will write about them in an upcoming post), as they might cloud the most important point.

The point being that the court re-writes a law (the 1964 Civil Rights Act), and it boldly and passionately admits it is doing so — at least one judge, writing a concurring opinion.

Judge Richard Posner’s hubris in some ways should be applauded, for he finally states for all of us to see, what so many other liberal judges deny doing, while they do it.  Here is what he wrote (emphasis mine):

I would prefer to see us acknowledge openly that today we, who are judges rather than members of Congress, are imposing on a half-century-old statute a meaning of “sex discrimination” that the Congress that enacted it would not have accepted. This is something courts do fairly frequently to avoid statutory obsolescence and concomitantly to avoid placing the entire burden of updating old statutes on the legislative branch. We should not leave the impression that we are merely the obedient servants of the 88th Congress (1963-1965), carrying out their wishes. We are not. We are taking advantage of what the last half century has taught.

Notice the three highlighted passages.

  • He admits they are re-writing the law to say something that would not have even passed. Think about that.  Not only, Judge Posner argues, does he have the power to re-interpret a statute to “adapt to new situations,” as liberals usually argue, he is saying they can re-write it to say the exact opposite of what Congress intended.  After all, they are not “merely obedient servants.”
  • Part of his reasoning is that poor Congress has too much on its hands, so judges are just alleviating their burden by taking on some of their legislative duties — duties, of course, THAT THE CONSTITUTION NEVER GIVES POWER TO THE COURTS TO PERFORM (yes, I’m yelling).
  • The “taking advantage” phrase must not be ignored. This is the revelation of an agenda-driven decision and an agenda-driven judge.  Laws are sometimes passed in order to bring stability and certainty and, indeed, to avoid the flimsy whims of culture.  Judge Posner and other liberal radicals like him stand in stark opposition to that, believing judges can just manipulate any law to say anything they think is good, according to the latest cultural fads.  The Constitution is nothing but a joke in the hands of such judges.

Reader, I don’t care if you are a Republican or a Democrat, a conservative or a liberal, we must stand together and reject this dangerous judicial philosophy.  It is judicial tyranny.

What is the recourse for “We the People” with the law in the hands of such a judicial despot?  To pass new laws, when the judge can make it mean whatever he or she wants?

This is why we need Judge Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme Court.  What a contrast!  Gorsuch says he will abide by the laws enacted by the people, even when they conflict with his personal policy preferences.  Therefore, when we elect people to Congress to enact a law and a law is passed, we can be confident in that law.  And if we don’t like what they are doing, we can elect new people to pass the kind of laws we want.  That way, the power remains with “We the People,” and not with unelected judicial supremacists.

So, support judges like Gorsuch and reject the “Posners” and their “living, breathing Constitution” that they can manipulate at will.

Freedom and liberty depend on it.

Gorsuch One Step Closer to the Supreme Court

By | LBB, News and Events | No Comments

It was a painful executive meeting at the Senate Judiciary Committee today where Judge Neil Gorsuch was voted favorably out of committee 11-9 on a straight partisan vote.  Democrats struggled to justify voting against such a well-qualified nominee, and they failed miserably.

Penny Nance, CEP & President of Concerned Women for America (CWA), said:

In a time of extreme political dysfunction and gridlock, the confirmation of Judge Gorsuch should be a point of unity. Judge Gorsuch has garnered widespread, bipartisan support for his confirmation due to his character, sharp intellect, jurisprudence, and impartiality. He is the embodiment of an ideal justice – one who is faithful to adhere to the text of the law when making decisions, regardless of his personal or political views.

Judge Gorsuch is now one step closer to making 1 First Street his new permanent office address.

The procedure in the Senate is very simple, despite what you hear from the biased media.  Democrats have already confirmed they will try to filibuster Judge Gorsuch, which only means that Sen. McConnell will have to do what Sen. Reid did back in 2013.  He will move to use the “nuclear” or “constitutional” option that will simply ensure a nominee can be confirmed by a simple majority, bypassing the 60 votes that were needed to end the debate on a topic before Sen. Reid changed the rules back then.

After that procedural vote to do away with the 60 vote threshold is passed, the Senate will finally vote on the substantive nomination where Judge Gorsuch already enjoys bipartisan support.

Sens. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana), Heidi Heitkamp (D-North Dakota), and Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) have already committed to do the honorable thing and vote for Judge Gorsuch.  They should be commended, along with all Republican senators who have shown strong support for the nominee all along.

Please remember to contact your senators and ask them to support Judge Gorsuch.

Three Takeaways from Day One of the Gorsuch Hearings

By | LBB, Legal, News and Events | No Comments

1)    Neil Gorsuch was stupendous

Once again, Judge Neil Gorsuch showed why he is such a stellar choice for the Supreme Court.  He was graceful, poised and patient with all members and had prepared a thoughtful opening statement that captivated the audience.

Here are some excerpts:

My Mom was one of the first women graduates of the University of Colorado law school. As the first female assistant district attorney in Denver, she helped start a program to pursue deadbeat dads. And her idea of day care sometimes meant I got to spend the day wandering the halls or tagging behind police officers. She taught me that headlines are fleeting – courage lasts.

My Dad taught me that success in life has little to do with success. Kindness, he showed me, is the great virtue. He showed me too that there are few places closer to God than walking in the wilderness or wading a trout stream. Even if it is an awfully long drive home with the family dog after he encounters a skunk. …

When I put on the robe, I am also reminded that under our Constitution, it is for this body, the people’s representatives, to make new laws. For the executive to ensure those laws are faithfully enforced. And for neutral and independent judges to apply the law in the people’s disputes. If judges were just secret legislators, declaring not what the law is but what they would like it to be, the very idea of a government by the people and for the people would be at risk. And those who came to court would live in fear, never sure exactly what governs them except the judge’s will. As Alexander Hamilton explained, “Liberty can have nothing to fear from” judges who apply the law, but liberty “ha[s] every thing to fear” if judges try to legislate, too. …

As a student many years ago, I found myself walking through the Old Granary burial ground in Boston where Paul Revere, John Hancock, and many of our founders are buried. I came across the tombstone of a lawyer and judge who today is largely forgotten — as we are all destined to be soon enough. His name was Increase Sumner. Written on his tombstone over 200 years ago was this description —

As a lawyer, he was faithful and able;

as a judge, patient, impartial, and decisive;

in private life, he was affectionate and mild;

in public life, he was dignified and firm.

Party feuds were allayed by the correctness of his conduct;

calumny was silenced by the weight of his virtues,

and rancor softened by the amenity of his manners.

These words stick with me. I keep them on my desk. They serve for me as a daily reminder of the law’s integrity, that a useful life can be led in its service, of the hard work it takes, and an encouragement to good habits when I fail and falter. At the end of it all, I could hope for nothing more than to be described as he was. If confirmed, I pledge that I will do everything in my power to be that man.

2)    Democrats want to debate Donald Trump’s record, not Gorsuch’s

It started with Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California) setting the stage, “We are here today under very unusual circumstances.”  Because “President Trump repeatedly promised to appoint someone in the mold of Justice Scalia.”  The horror!

Someone should have told her speech writer that that was one of the main reasons why President Trump won the election!  But I digress.

It continued with almost every other Democratic senator.  Here is Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota):

You come before us this afternoon not only as a nominee sitting at a table with your friends and family behind you but in the context of the era in which we live. From the highest level of government, we have heard criticism of journalists. Seventeen intelligent agencies have confirmed that Russia attempted to influence our most recent election.  At the same time, voting rights …

She continued to complain about President Trump for a while, until she finally admitted, “You are not the cause of these challenges, Judge.”  Then why are you talking about that?  Have a hearing on President Trump, if you like.  But this will be a recurring theme.

A theme that will ultimately fail, but they’ll push it nonetheless.

3)    Sen. Whitehouse should be ashamed of himself 

Sure, no one but legal geeks like me pays close attention to Senate Judiciary Committee Members’ statements, but Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse’s (D- Rhode Island) opening statement should be highlighted and decried (by senators from both parties) as the worst form of partisan chicanery.

He essentially accused conservative justices (and conservative judges in general) of being bought by corporations.  You can watch his shameful statement here:

“There is no coincidence here,” he said, “Business has groups trolling for cases to get them before the friendly court. … It’s kind of a machine.  They set up and fund front groups, the front groups appear before the court, they tell the court what the special interest wants and the court follows the brief and the decision favors the special interest and they pour more money to the front groups.”

In other words, conservative justices are beholden to big businesses because they give money for them to get them elected and selected.  He even insinuated that was the case with Judge Gorsuch.  Those same groups, he told Gorsuch looking straight at him, “are spending millions of dollars in a dark money campaign to push your confirmation.”

Gorsuch is a humble, respectful man.  And frankly, almost all senators-Republican and Democrats- were at least dignified in their statements, even as they expressed some apprehension to Gorsuch’s nomination.  But not Sen. Whitehouse.

He dishonored the Senate and insulted an honorable man to score cheap political points.  He should be ashamed of what he did, and he should apologize to his Senate colleagues, the nominee, and the American people.

He, above all, should apologize to Chief Justice Roberts for whom he reserved most contempt.

Sen. Whitehouse’s conspiracy theories are typical of the most fringe groups of the radical left.  But for him to bring them into a confirmation hearing as important as this, is simply reprehensible.