How To End Illegal Immigration, Stop Government Theft, And Save Billions

Hungary doesn’t have a migrant problem. Why do migrants not try to get into Hungary? Cal Thomas writes:

Two summers ago on a visit to Budapest, I asked the spokesman for the Hungarian government about the growing problem of migrants coming into Europe. He told me Hungary doesn’t have a migrant problem because the nation doesn’t have welfare programs. So, he said, migrants continue their travels to other European countries that do.

It also helps that Hungary has declared itself to be a Christian nation.

The only way we are going to win the anti-illegal immigration battle is to go to the root of the problem: America’s unconstitutional wealth-transfer system. We need to remove the incentives for people who come to the United States for a free ride. This will mean dismantling the welfare state that millions of Americans participate in and defend.

We also need to go back to America’s founding principles that were mostly Christian.

The reason many (not all) illegal immigrants are willing to break the law to enter the United States is that it’s attractive to them in terms of monetary benefits. Many come for jobs and work hard at them. We want these types of immigrants, but they are often overshadowed by those who take advantage of lenient immigration policies, don’t want to assimilate, and benefit from our unconstitutional and immoral wealth-transfer system called “welfare.”

Islam is the wild card. There are millions of Muslims who believe it is their Allah-ordained mission to remake the world into a global caliphate by any means at their disposal. They will even use our democratic process to accomplish it as they are slowly attempting to do in the United States. Rep. Keith Ellison is a prime example. He is a nut case who has said, “If they can ban Muslims, why can’t they ban Mormons…?” Of course, Muslims are not being banned. But if Mormons were blowing up churches, mosques, raping, beheading, drowning, and burning Christians, and gunning down people on military bases and airports, then I would be all for a Mormon ban.

There are other Muslim enablers like Nancy “Tell Them You’re a Muslim” Pelosi. Mass immigration from Muslim nations could be a deathblow to our way of life. For many, the welfare state is a way to finance their objectives until they are in the ascendancy.

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Education is where the war of ideas is fought

The great immigrant movements of the 19th and 20th centuries came about because of economic opportunities and the pursuit of social and political liberty. The welfare state was almost non-existent. The Great Society was not implemented until the mid-1960s. Since then we have seen a rise in multi-generational unemployment, fractured families, government dependency, and a solid block of voters to keep the welfare state intact. This is mostly true, in terms of percentages, of black families. It’s a shame. The war on poverty has become a war on the poor, and what liberals want is more poverty programs to keep the war going.

Most people my age (I was born in 1950) are grandchildren and great-grandchildren of immigrants. I lived in a neighborhood of second-generation immigrant families: Poles, Italians, Jews, Czechs, Ukrainians, Irish, and others.

When my father returned wounded from the Korean War (he had his right leg blown off), we lived in a housing development outside of Pittsburgh that overlooked the Monongahela River that was called “The Projects.” It has since been razed.

At the time, the area was a booming steel, iron, and coal center that was populated and worked by immigrants. A dozen smokestacks are all that remain as a reminder of what used to be. The Waterfront — a super-regional open-air shopping mall spanning the three boroughs of Homestead, West Homestead, and Munhall near Pittsburgh — has replaced the once burgeoning steel industry that gave Pittsburgh its nickname — the Steel City.

But it could all turn to dust like the mills turned to rust if Americans don’t say no to the Welfare State. If we don’t, we will be overwhelmed by people who will eat our capital until there is nothing left.

We moved out of the projects when I was five. My parents purchased a house in the South Hills area of Pittsburgh with other families that were just starting out.

Illegal immigration was not an issue. Immigration was manageable because there were laws and a civil religion built on the foundation of Christianity, and our nation was selective. Not everyone got in, but we knew that everyone in our neighborhood shared a common set of moral standards even though we may not have shared a common national heritage.

Everyone worked. Most people lived within their means because they knew there was no Great Society ready, willing, and able to bail them out of a financial fix by taking money from other workers. There was compulsive Social Security, of which Congress exempted itself, but almost no one saw it as the only source of retirement income.

Here’s the hard part for many conservatives who are quick to blame immigrants. Modern-day immigrants did not create the welfare state. We did. Dr. Gary North writes:

Some people think that the big problem with illegal immigrants is that they are taking advantage of the welfare rolls. I’m sure a lot of them are. Whose fault is that? It’s the fault of the Anglos, who created the welfare system. It wasn’t created by illegal Mexican immigrants. It began in the New Deal. It was promoted by graduates of the Ivy League universities. All of this was invented by educated people, and it was supported by grassroots Democrats who used the programs to get elected after 1930. The shock troops of the welfare state are not Mexicans. They are Anglos.

Then there’s government education, the biggest welfare scam that most Americans fool themselves into believing is free. What is the predominant worldview taught in today’s government schools that were designed by the same people that created the welfare and warfare State? Moral relativism and a bigger welfare state. It’s no wonder that leftists are attacking people who identify public schools as “government schools.” Because they are, and leftists like it that way.

Dr. North continues with some painful truth:

The hue and cry against illegal immigration is a hue and cry against the fact that illegal immigrants come here to take advantage of the unethical social and economic structures that have been set up by the Anglos. Anglo voters look at Hispanic immigrants, and they perceive them as weak people: welfare clients. But at least half of the American population is on the dole in one way or the other. The two biggest welfare programs in the country are Medicare and Social Security. The beneficiaries of these programs are primarily white middle-class voters who got old. The only way that these two systems can remain solvent longer is because of new workers coming into the economy. But these new workers, at the margin, are Hispanics. They are doing in the United States what immigrants out of North Africa are doing to the welfare state economies of southern Europe. They are keeping the welfare system going.

Building a wall won’t fix the multiple moral and political strangleholds that are choking America by Americans. “Any conservative who gets in a dither over amnesty, but who is unwilling to eliminate the welfare state, has his priorities messed up. His ethics can be summarized in this moral axiom: ‘Illegal immigrants should not have access to our loot. We stole it fair and square.’”

So Let’s Ban Marijuana

Thirty-three states have legalized the medical use of marijuana. Ten states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana (eleven if you count Illinois, where legalization takes effect on January 1 of next year). At least twenty states and more than fifty localities in a dozen states have either fully or partially decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Yet:

  • The federal government still considers the growing, distributing, buying, selling, possessing, or smoking of marijuana to be a violation of federal law.
  • The federal government classifies marijuana as a Schedule I controlled substance under the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 801) with “a high potential for abuse,” “no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States,” and “a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug under medical supervision.”
  • Marijuana arrests are still rising in the United States. There is now an average of one marijuana bust roughly every 48 seconds. According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report (UCR), there were 659,700 marijuana arrests in 2017, 599,282 of which were just for marijuana possession.

The billions and billions of dollars that the federal government is spending every year to wage war on marijuana users is ludicrous—especially considering what Americans are dying of every year.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a total of 2,813,503 Americans died in 2017 (the latest year for which figures are available).

  • Heart disease killed 647,457 people.
  • Cancer killed 599,108 people.
  • Accidents killed 169,936 people.
  • Chronic lower respiratory diseases killed 160,201 people.
  • Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases) killed 146,383 people.
  • Alzheimer’s disease killed 121,404 people.
  • Diabetes killed 83,564 people.
  • Influenza and Pneumonia killed 55,672 people.
  • Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis killed 50,633 people.
  • Intentional self-harm (suicide) killed 47,173 people.
  • Unintentional falls killed 36,338 people.
  • Motor vehicle traffic accidents killed 40,231 people.
  • Unintentional poisoning deaths killed 64,795 people.
  • Firearms killed 39,773 people.

So let’s ban marijuana, which, according to the federal government’s own Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), no one has ever overdosed from using.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were a total of 5,147 fatal work injuries recorded in the United States in 2017 (the latest year for which figures are available).

  • Falls killed 887 workers.
  • Transportation incidents killed 2,077 workers.
  • Cranes killed 33 workers.
  • Confined spaces killed 166 workers.
  • Contact with objects and equipment killed 695 workers.
  • Unintentional overdoses due to nonmedical use of drugs or alcohol killed 272 workers.
  • Fires and explosions killed 123 workers.
  • Guns killed 351 workers.
  • Knives and sharp objects killed 47 workers.
  • There were 91 roofers killed at work.
  • There were 258 farmers and ranchers killed at work.
  • There were 30 refuse collectors killed at work.
  • There were 112 miners and oil and gas extractors killed at work.
  • There were 258 farmers and ranchers killed at work.
  • There were 59 aircraft pilots and flight engineers killed at work.
  • There were 41 fishermen killed at work.
  • There were 14 iron and steel workers killed at work.
  • There were 26 power-line installers and repairers killed at work.
  • There were 244 goundskeepers killed at work.
  • There were 55 loggers killed at work.

So let’s ban marijuana, which, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), no one has ever died from using.

According to the CDC:

  • Cigarette smoking is responsible for more than 480,000 deaths per year in the United States.
  • Smoking causes cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung diseases, diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

So let’s ban marijuana and keep tobacco—one of the deadliest substances known to man—legal.

According to the CDC:

  • Excessive alcohol use led to approximately 88,000 deaths and 2.5 million years of potential life lost (YPLL) each year in the United States from 2006 – 2010, shortening the lives of those who died by an average of 30 years.
  • Excessive drinking was responsible for 1 in 10 deaths among working-age adults aged 20-64 years.

So let’s ban marijuana and allow people to buy and consume as much alcohol as they can, even if it will kill them.

According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), 6,227 pedestrians were killed on U.S. roads in 2018.

So let’s ban marijuana and spend billions to enforce the ban instead of investing in making it safer for pedestrians to cross the street.

The war on marijuana is not only ludicrous, it is unreasonable, irrational, and illogical.

What Does The Bible Say About Citizenship?

In the modern world, then, each Christian is a citizen of two nations: An earthly nation like France, England, or the U.S.A., and the heavenly nation (Eph 2:6; not of this world, John 18:36), the church. Though we belong entirely to Christ, we do not on that account renounce our citizenship in the earthly nations, any more than we leave our earthly families. Indeed, we seek to be good citizens, for those earthly nations themselves, and their rulers, received their authority from God (Rom 13:1-7).1

There is a strong belief among many Christians that belief in an exclusively heavenly citizenship has no effect on the Christian in relation to his civil citizenship since he is simply a pilgrim and a stranger on his way to heaven. What’s the result of such thinking? “In no country except with the exception of Czarist Russia did the clergy become by tradition so completely servile to the political authority of the State.”2 Adolf Hitler took advantage of this belief. Martin Niemöller taught otherwise: “‘We have no more thought of using our own powers to escape the arm of the authorities than had the Apostles of old. No more are we ready to keep silent at man’s behest when God commands us to speak. For it is, and must remain, the case that we must obey God rather than man.’”3 A Christian’s heavenly citizenship, Niemöller concluded, must have an impact in the world in which he lives.

Dual Citizenship

By the thinking of many, the Christian’s heavenly citizenship automatically nullifies any earthly citizenship. The Apostle Paul saw no contradiction in claiming his Roman citizenship (Acts 16:37-3922:22-29) and maintaining that he was also a citizen of heaven (Phil. 3:20). There is no contradiction in Peter’s words when he commands us to submit ourselves “to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right” (1 Peter 2:13–14) and his words to the officers of the temple when he and the apostles said, “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).

The Christian is a citizen of several locales ‑‑ a city, county, state, and nation. For example, the Apostle Paul was a Roman citizen (Acts 22:27‑29) of the city of Tarsus in the region of Cilicia (21:39) and a resident of Jerusalem in the district of Judea (22:3). Had Israel not been subject to the sovereignty of Rome, Paul could have exercised his tribal citizenship as a resident of the “tribe of Benjamin” (Phil. 3:5). Paul had multiple civil citizenships. The concept of a single citizenship has more in common with pagan Greece than with biblical Christianity.

No one could become a citizen at Athens if he was a citizen in another city; for it was a religious impossibility to be at the same time a member of two cities, as it also was to be a member of two families.4

In the United States, an individual has a national, state, county, and city citizenship. In some states, borough governments (e.g., Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Minnesota) and parish governments (e.g., Louisiana) operate. Each of the many civil authorities holds real but limited delegated power and sovereignty in these locales. Their real authority and sovereignty can be used to curtail the power of another legitimate government that might abuse its authority, or an illegitimate governing power assuming rule through coercion.

Through multiple civil citizenships, citizens have access to the seats of power where influence can be exerted on a local level. Abolition of these many civil distinctions leads to despotism and tyranny. Adolph Hitler was able to consolidate his power by eliminating the many civil distinctions within the nation:

[H]e had abolished the separate powers of the historic states and made them subject to the central authority of the Reich, which was in his hands. . . . “Popular assemblies” of the states were abolished, the sovereign powers of the states were transferred to the Reich, all state governments were placed under the Reich government and the state governors put under the administration of the Reich Minister of the Interior.5

One of the tenets of Marxism is the “gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country, by a more equable distribution of the population over the country.”6 Our American constitutional founders designed a decentralized civil government that also decentralized power and authority.

Ultimately, the Christian is a citizen of God’s kingdom. In Philippians 3:20, Paul mentions this aspect of citizenship: “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly await for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.” This idea corresponds to Jesus informing Nicodemus that he must be “born again” [Lit., born from above] (John 3:5; cf. 14:1‑3). In effect, he must become a citizen of heaven. An individual’s Christian “citizenship” does not cancel his earthly citizenships and corresponding civil obligations, however.

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In another sense, the Christian’s heavenly citizenship makes him an alien, stranger, and exile on earth (Heb. 11:131 Peter 2:11). The Christian does not repudiate his earthly citizenships while acting as a pilgrim. Rather, his earthly citizenships are not to be considered primary. Earthly citizenships are temporary and have meaning only within the context of a biblical moral order — the kingdom of God that encompasses all citizenships. The Christian is told to “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness… (Matt. 6:33).

The Christian has an obligation to follow the law of God as it applies to all locales. God’s law is the standard whereby all the above-mentioned citizenships must operate. Our heavenly citizenship involves comprehensive law-keeping. Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments” (John 14:15). Jesus does not restrict the locale of law-keeping; therefore, we can conclude that the keeping of His commandments includes every citizenship without exception.

The church is spoken of as a citizenship: “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow‑citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household” (Eph. 2:19). The Christian’s heavenly citizenship automatically places him in an ecclesiastical body where a law-order should operate (Matt. 16:13‑19; 18:15‑20; 1 Cor. 6:1‑11).

Paul’s Example

The Apostle Paul saw no inconsistency in taking advantage of his Roman citizenship (Acts 16:37-3922:22-29) while maintaining that he was also a citizen of heaven (Phil. 3:20). Paul did not deny his Roman citizenship and claim heavenly citizenship when he was taken to be “examined by scourging” (Acts 22:24). “And when they stretched him out with thongs, Paul said to the centurion who was standing by, ‘Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman and uncondemned?’” (22:25). Why didn’t Paul just “take it,” content in the fact that he was a citizen of heaven? Instead, he used the privileges of Roman citizenship to his advantage. While some had purchased their citizenship with large sums of money, Paul “was actually born a [Roman] citizen” (22:28).

Nowhere do we find Paul repudiating the privileges that came with being a Roman citizen. We should keep in mind that the Caesars considered themselves to be gods. To be actively involved in the realm of politics does not mean that politics must be free of all pagan thought. Paul proclaimed an unadulterated message to these pagan rulers hoping to persuade them of their religious folly. After hearing Paul’s defense of the gospel, King Agrippa replied to him, either has a question or statement of fact, “In a short time you will persuade me to become a Christian” (Acts 26:28).

On numerous occasions the apostle used all of the privileges of Roman citizenship to his advantage by appealing, not to heaven before the Romans (certainly Paul did appeal to heaven, since he tells us to “pray without ceasing” [1 Thess. 5:17]) but to “Caesar,” the seat of Roman civil authority (Acts 25:11). Of course, he was using Caesar to advance the gospel to bring others into heavenly citizenship.

  1. John M. Frame, “Toward a Theology of the State,” Westminster Theological Journal 51:2 (Fall 1989), 221. []
  2. William L. Shirer, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960), 236. []
  3. Quoted in Shirer, The Nightmare Years, 154. []
  4. Fustel de Coulanges, The Ancient City: A Study on the Religion, Laws, and Institutions of Greece and Rome (Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor [1864] 1955), 196. Quoted in Gary North, Political Polytheism: The Myth of Pluralism (Institute for Christian Economics, 1989), 62. []
  5. Shirer, Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, 200. []
  6. The Communist Manifesto, written with Friedrich Engels, 1848. []

“They Shall Not Grow Old” is a Superb Antiwar Film

05/27/2019

 

I recently saw the documentary They Shall Not Grow Old, an account by English soldiers of their experiences in the Great War of 1914-1918. Culled from hundreds of hours of colorized actual wartime footage, it’s a beautiful and heart wrenching film. It’s also a superb antiwar film, simply through its graphic and accurate depiction of mass death and casualties across blood-soaked European battlefields.

Refreshingly, the film relies solely on audio transcripts from about 200 English soldiers who fought in World War I. There is no script, and no narration. The viewer simply hears the gravelly, aged voices of the soldiers themselves, never identified by name or rank. They are anonymous, but judging by the towns from which they hailed and the farm or factory jobs they left, most were enlisted men.

Though commissioned by the BBC, producer Sir Peter Robert Jackson has no political axe to grind. This is a story of men, of human beings and their oftentimes horrific experiences in perhaps the savagest of modern wars. It has little to say about particular battles, commanding officers, politicians, or any of the events surrounding the war. It stands apart from most war documentaries precisely because Jackson strenuously avoids any filter between the soldiers’ recollections and the viewer.

From the outset we see the naivete of young men, many no more than 15 or 16. They hear vague rumors about the assassination of Franz Ferdinand. They see activity in their small towns and villages, with soldiers bustling about setting up enlistment stations. They read newspaper reports about Germany threatening Europe, and feel both pressure and pride compelling them to join the war effort. Though the official enlistment age is 19, many of the taller boys lie and are readily accepted.

For almost all of them, signing up is simply the thing to do. They join the fight for their mates, for their families, and for the approval of the girls and older people in their towns. Still teenage boys, they have no capacity to imagine or justify what will come. Questions of politics and ideology, questions about just or unjust war, are simply outside of their thinking at the time. Joining the war, and defending England, are obviously the right thing to do.

Training is a scant six weeks.  A few older men in their 30s and 40s with military experience set up barracks and begin teaching basic formations and physical fitness. Quartermasters dole out ill-fitting uniforms and stiff boots, all fated to become rotted and waterlogged in trenches. Well-used Enfield rifles are issued, heavy and quite foreign to many of the boys who have never fired a gun. And after just a few weeks, the boys head off to the beaches, woods, and fields of France, Germany, Prussia, Belgium, and beyond—scarcely removed from their school boy or farm boy days. Anyone with a young teenager can imagine how their parents felt.

The battle scenes are gruesome, and intense. The film does not spare viewers. Dead and dismembered bodies feature frequently, but the sheer horror and bloodshed are moving rather than gratuitous. Humanity in wartime isn’t an abstraction, but the real and abject collection of flesh, bone, organs, blood, and tissue of the soldiers who were running beside you a moment ago. War is violence, and They Shall Not Grow Old never strays from reality.

Motorized military transport was less common then, and horses were ubiquitous. Officers in particular still relied on them. But the equines too are slaughtered, and some post-battle scenes show a staggering number of dead and injured horses, some still braying and flopping in misery.

Battlefield medicine and medical corps were rudimentary by today’s standards, and the fighting is often too intense or lengthy to allow for removal of dead and injured comrades. Many soldiers lie horrifically injured for hours or even days, writhing in pain and often bleeding to death before help could arrive. During lulls in fighting, the soldiers do the best they can to walk among the bodies and search for signs of breathing or movement, and in some terrible cases make the decision to shoot a suffering man who clearly won’t survive as an act of mercy. With the sheer number of dead, and the constant need to advance against the enemy, mass burials on the fly are commonplace. Chaplains do their best to hold brief services, with the ragtag survivors doffing their helmets and allowing themselves a moment of quiet.

Privation is as constant as the fighting. Troops eat when they can at the front, mostly bread and jam with a bit of bacon and hard tack biscuits in an English tin (an early version of today’s MREs). Many only weigh 10 stone. Coffee or tea is a luxury, requiring a heating fire. Oftentimes trenches fill with water, soaking their legs and leading to savage rot and infection in their lower extremities. Water borne diseases run rampant, shaving and haircuts become more and more difficult, and dental care is almost nonexistent—as made clear by the gray and jumbled grins the soldiers sometimes manage to flash for cameras. Rats and lice are constant companions in the trenches.

As German forces retreat, and victory becomes more likely, the English troops begin taking prisoners. This part of the film is especially hopeful, as it shows the common humanity between working class enlisted soldiers on both sides. German combatants (though sometimes not the hated machine gunners) who put their hands up and their rifles down are taken into impromptu custody and fed. The English soldiers recognize the Germans as boys just like them, though skinnier and provisioned more badly. Some captors speak German, some prisoners speak English. Cigarettes and coffee are spoken by all. The Germans are pitied, not hated. They all lament the damnable war, and talk about going home.

But going home is not so easy, and at the end of the film surviving soldiers recount their jarring experiences returning to their old lives. Though there has been rationing and hardship across England, their families and friends can’t relate to what they’ve been through. Ludwig von Mises experienced this too, upon return to Vienna from his time in the Austro-Hungarian army: only other soldiers could truly understand what they had seen and done. The economy in post-war England is wrecked, and many returning soldiers find their old jobs gone and their former employers less than sympathetic. There are no ticker tape parades to welcome them home and no GI bill to get them back on their feet. It’s hardly surprising many rebelled against the English class system during the interwar years, no longer content “down on the farm” as the famous song went.

Memorial Day observes and seeks to remember the wartime deaths of American soldiers. Observation, not celebration, differentiates it from Armistice Day (now Veteran’s Day). We should observe and memorialize death, but celebrate the end of war. Anyone who watches They Shall Not Grow Old will do both, and feel intense gratitude for the relative peace we enjoy today in the West.

The film invites all of us to reflect on the pettiness and minor irritations of our easy lives. It inspires us to recommit ourselves to peace, and to challenge those who advocate for endless US wars. Most of all, this great film will make you angry at the politicians and generals who sent those young boys off to slaughter 100 years ago.

Jeff Deist is president of the Mises Institute. He previously worked as chief of staff to Congressman Ron Paul, and as an attorney for private equity clients. Contact: emailtwitter.

Assault on Western Civilisation

By Walter Williams (www.lewrockwell.com), 3rd July, 2019

Western civilization was founded on a set of philosophies that focus strongly on the sanctity of individuals and their power of logic and reason. This belief led to a desire to trust things that could be proven to be true or legitimate, from government to science. Judeo-Christian morality has formed the basis of most Western notions of ethics and behavioral standards. Thus, the attack on Western civilization must begin with the attack on the church and Christian values, and, just as important, the family unit must be undermined. The reason why the church, Christian values and family are targets of the left is they want people’s loyalty and allegiance to be to the state. The church, Christianity and the family stand in the way. Let’s look at some of the left’s agenda.

Joe Biden, criticizing sexual assault, said, “This is English jurisprudential culture, a white man’s culture,” adding, “It’s got to change.” The Western world’s culture isn’t perfect but women fare better under it than any other culture. Just ask yourself: If you’re a feminist, in which countries would you like to live? Would it be Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries, China or countries on the African continent, north or south of the Sahara? In those countries, women encounter all kinds of liberty restrictions plus in at least 30 countries on the African continent, the Middle East and Southeast Asia, female genital mutilation is practiced. You might ask Joe Biden what part of the “white man’s culture” needs to be changed.

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The greatest efforts to downplay the achievements of Western civilization start at our colleges and universities. An American Council of Trustees and Alumni 2016 study reported that “the overwhelming majority of America’s most prestigious institutions do not require even the students who major in history to take a single course on United States history or government.” Because of this ignorance, our young people fall easy prey to charlatans, quacks and liars who wish to downgrade our founders and the American achievement.

In 2012, 2014 and 2015, an ACTA-commissioned survey of college graduates found that less than 20% could accurately identify the effect of the Emancipation Proclamation. Less than half could identify George Washington as the American general at Yorktown. One-third of college graduates were unaware that FDR introduced the New Deal. Over one-third of the college graduates surveyed could not place the American Civil War in its correct 20-year time frame. Nearly half of the college graduates could not identify correctly the term lengths of U.S. senators and representatives.

The left in our country often suggests that people who stand up for Western civilization are supporting a racial hierarchy. The fact is that the history of the world is one of arbitrary tyrannical abuse and control. Poverty has been the standard fare for a vast majority of mankind. America became the exception to what life was like. That exceptionalism inspired imitators, and our vision of freedom and liberty spread to what has become known as the Western world.

Many do not appreciate the fact that freedom and competition in both the marketplace and idea arena unleashed a level of entrepreneurism, risk-taking and creativity heretofore unknown to mankind. Look at the marketplace of ideas. The Nobel Prize has been awarded to 860 people since its inception in 1901. The prizewinner distribution: Americans (375), United Kingdom (131) Germany (108), France (69) and Sweden (32); that’s 83% of Nobel Prizes won. The large majority of other Nobel winners are mostly westerners. I might add that Japan has 27 Nobel Prize winners, but their first winner was awarded in 1949, after WWII led Japan to become more westernized.

There’s a reason why the West leads the world in terms of scientific innovation, wealth and military might and it has little to do with genetics. Instead, it’s the environment of freedom, both in the market for goods and in the idea marketplace. Rigorous competition brings out the best in mankind. Leftists and would-be tyrants find Western values offensive.

A Tale Of Two Revolutions

By Gary DeMar, May 9, 2019

The storming of the Bastille was a catalyst for what became known as the Reign of Terror. “French society underwent an epic transformation as feudal, aristocratic and religious privileges evaporated under a sustained assault from left-wing political groups and the masses on the streets.” How bad was it?

Internally, popular sentiments radicalized the Revolution significantly, culminating in the rise of Maximilien Robespierre and the Jacobins and virtual dictatorship by the Committee of Public Safety during the Reign of Terror from 1793 until 1794 during which between 16,000 and 40,000 people were killed.

Did you get that? Between 16,000 and 40,000 French citizens were killed for a better France. Consider the following:

Ordered by the king [Louis XVI] to surrender, more than 600 Swiss guards were savagely murdered. The mobs ripped them to shreds and mutilated their corpses. “Women, lost to all sense of shame,” said one surviving witness, “were committing the most indecent mutilations on the dead bodies from which they tore pieces of flesh and carried them off in triumph.” Children played kickball with the guards’ heads. Every living thing in the Tuileries [royal palace in Paris] was butchered or thrown from the windows by the hooligans. Women were raped before being hacked to death.

The Jacobin club . . . demanded that the piles of rotting, defiled corpses surrounding the Tuileries be left to putrefy in the street for days afterward as a warning to the people of the power of the extreme left.

This bestial attack, it was later decreed, would be celebrated every year as “the festival of the unity and indivisibility of the republic.” It would be as if families across America delighted in the annual TV special “A Manson Family Christmas.”1

As revolutionary leader Jean-Paul Marat declared, “Let the blood of the traitors flow! That is the only way to save the country.” Sounds like some anti-Trumpers from the Democrat Party.

The storming of the Bastille, now a national holiday in France, led to the deaths of 300,000 people. It is often compared to America’s War for Independence. Festivities and official ceremonies are held all over France. It is also celebrated in Belgium, Hungary, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and in more than 50 cities across the United States.

John Kerry described the French Revolution as democracy in action. Bloody revolutions must be a good thing if they are celebrated with such fervor and delight.

The murdering mobs that attacked the nearly empty Bastille (at the time of the siege there were only seven non-political prisoners confined there) believed their actions were for a better France, similar to what today’s political revolutionaries and Islamic terrorists have in mind.

Today’s Leftist revolutionaries have more in common with the French Revolution than they do with Independence Day and the founding of the United States.

The following 1793 Thanksgiving Proclamation from Josiah Bartlett, signer of the Declaration of Independence, Governor of New Hampshire (1729-1795), will give you some idea what the difference was between the French Revolution and the founding of the United States of America:

Let us entreat the Father of Mercies, to continue us the blessings we now enjoy, and bestow upon us all further needed favors.

That it would please Him still to have these United States under His Holy protection and guidance – that He would inspire those who have the management of all our public affairs with all that wisdom, prudence and integrity that is necessary to the faithful discharge of their important trusts, that all their determinations may tend to promote the real happiness and prosperity of this great and rising Republic, and that all people may be disposed to afflict in carrying such determinations into effect.

That it would please God to over-rule the tumults and confusions among the nations, in such a manner as shall subserve to His own Glory and the best good and happiness of mankind, and that in His own due time, He would calm the angry passions of the contending nations and say to them, peace, be still.

That God would be pleased to look down with an eye of compassion upon the whole human race, and dispel those clouds of ignorance, superstition and bigotry that overspread so great a part of the world, and that the knowledge of and reverential love and regard to the One God and Father, of all, and a true benevolence and good will to their fellow men, may pervade the hearts, and influence the lives of all mankind, and all Nations, Languages and Tongues be brought to join in singing, Glory to God in the highest, on Earth Peace and good will to men.

Like us today, our nation’s founders were not perfect. Wrongs needed to be rectified. As always, this question arises: By what standard? There is no longer a fixed moral standard.

The George Washington High School mural depicts our nation’s history warts and all. The Bible does the same thing. Instead of making us uncomfortable, we should learn from the mistakes and sins of the past.

— Gary DeMar

The following article was written by Dr. Jerry Newcombe.

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Could a contrast between the American Revolution and the French Revolution be relevant to today’s conflicts? I think so. The attempt to demote historic icons like George Washington is a case in point.

George Washington grew up as a gentleman farmer in Virginia and was a fourth-generation slave-owner. But by the end of his life, he had decided slavery was immoral and so at his death, he freed his slaves and made provision for them.

But in our day — where the alleged “right to not be offended” often seems to trump the constitutional right to free speech — some are calling for images of George Washington to be torn down, like statues of Confederates.

The dailywire.com reports on how “George Washington High School” in Northern California is contemplating tearing down two 1930’s panels featuring George Washington because the pair of murals allegedly “traumatizes students and community members.”

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This is in San Francisco, so the outcome seems likely.

How long will our historical iconoclasm last? The cultural Marxists are working overtime to cut Americans off from our history.

I believe that despite his flaws, including being a slave-owner, there are many heroic aspects of our first president. Dr. Peter Lillback and I wrote, George Washington’s Sacred Fire, which puts all this in context. Recently we discussed Washington and slavery.

Our founders fought the American Revolution, led by Washington, so that we could enjoy our God-given rights. Though slow in coming, recognition of those God-given rights eventually gave the slaves their freedom. What is happening in the culture wars today is a revival of the French Revolution, which waged war against God.

France in 1789 fought against injustice, even in the church; but their godless “cure” ended up being worse than the disease. The French Revolution was anti-God and pro-tyranny — leading to death in the streets. The American Revolution was pro-God and pro-freedom.

America’s founders mentioned God four times in the Declaration of Independence. They identified King George III’s tyranny as illegitimate — because he was violating our God-given rights. The founders, with a firm reliance on the Lord, laid down “their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honour” in support for their declaration as a new nation.

When George Washington first read the Declaration to his troops, one of his first acts was to hire Christian chaplain throughout the army. He felt that if they were to win this war, it would only be with God’s help.

And he and the other colonists felt that God did help. To paraphrase Washington in his First Inaugural Address, no people should be more grateful to the Lord than we Americans because God aided us at every step to become an independent nation.

Consider a few further contrasts between the American Revolution and the French Revolution.

Our framers signed the Constitution in “the year of our Lord” 1787. The French Revolutionaries got rid of the Christian calendar, and so they declared 1791 as Year 1 of their new non-Christian calendar.

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The French Revolutionaries desecrated Notre Dame Cathedral, disallowing Christian worship there and placed a half-naked woman on the altar, calling her “Reason,” whom they worshiped.

In contrast, our founders hired Christian chaplains for the military and also for the House and Senate. Since there weren’t enough church buildings in Washington, D. C., they held Christian worship services in the Capitol building. Presidents Jefferson and Madison attended those services.

The French Revolution eventually consumed its own. Since then, France has had 17 different governments, while the U.S. still lives under one — the Constitution.

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I predict that today’s social justice warriors, who are consuming our past heroes, will one day be consumed by future revolutionaries. Future generations could look back at us and say things like: “You had 4D sonograms documenting the humanity of the unborn and yet you allowed millions of abortions on demand?” or “Science has documented genuine differences between men and women, yet you allowed boys who claimed to be girls to compete and dominate in sports, winning valuable scholarships?”

Every generation has its flaws and blind spots. Our generation has yet to recognize its own.

Slavery was evil. Thank God for those strong Christians who defeated it. Thank God for William Wilberforce’s Christian anti-slavery crusade, which took him about five decades to complete. That crusade inspired abolition here in America. Interestingly, in his day, Wilberforce was sometimes called “the George Washington of Humanity.” Both men worked hard to liberate others.

Slavery has plagued humanity from the beginning of time and can even be found in some places today, places where the gospel of Christ has no sway.

Too bad the children of the French Revolution are rising up today to cut us off from our past heroes. There is a reason Washington continues to be a hero to millions. Enough with the historical revisionism.

Cultural Marxism’s Long Ideological History Had One Major Goal

By Gary DeMar (American vision. org), May 2, 2019

Near the mid-point of the 21st century, writing in the Introduction to Carl Henry’s The Uneasy Conscience of Modern Fundamentalism, Harold J. Ockenga wrote the following: “A Christian world- and life-view embracing world questions, societal needs, personal education ought to arise out of Matt. 28:18–20 as much as evangelism does. Culture depends on such a view, and Fundamentalism is prodigally dissipating [wastefully spending] the Christian culture accretion [buildup] of centuries, a serious sin. A sorry answer lies in the abandonment of societal fields to the secularist.”1

The controversy over the role that religion plays in culture and politics is an old one. Jesus was accused of subverting the political order by “misleading [the] nation and forbidding [people] to pay taxes to Caesar, and saying that He Himself is Christ, a King” (Luke 23:2). Christians were accused of promoting the idea that there was “another king, Jesus” (Acts 17:7).

The designation of Jesus as “Lord” had significant political implications in the Roman Empire since the Emperor held the title of Dominus et Deus, “Lord and God.” Rome permitted and promoted religious diversity, just like today’s liberals, but it did not allow religious competition with the State, just like today’s liberals.

For more than 50 years, from the Scopes Trial in 1925 to the presidential candidacy of Jimmy “Born Again” Carter in 1976, conservative Christians did not develop a discernable social or political philosophy.2 The secularists took advantage of the indifference and moved the country in a decidedly anti-Christian direction. The major institutions were captured—courts, schools, seminaries—and turned into secular advocacy groups churning out disciples for the humanist agenda. As Christians observed this happening, they concluded that (1) they are just pilgrims passing through, (2) Jesus is going to rescue them through a rapture, (3) and it’s the Christian’s lot in life to be persecuted for Jesus.

Those pushing for an overthrow of the establishment in the 1960s learned a lot when their radical and often times violent agenda failed to accomplish their stated goals and turned the majority of the population against them. In his Rules for Radicals, Saul Alinsky (1909–1972) understood the futility of their tactics and suggested a different path:

“Power comes out of the barrel of a gun!” is an absurd rallying cry when the other side has all the guns. Lenin was a pragmatist; when he returned . . . from exile, he said that the Bolsheviks stood for getting power through the ballot but would reconsider after they got the guns. Militant mouthings? Spouting quotes from Mao, Castro, and Che Guevara, which are as germane to our highly technological, computerized, cybernetic, nuclear-powered, mass media society as a stagecoach on a jet runway at Kennedy airport?”

The radicals knew it would be necessary to capture the institutions without ever firing a shot or blowing up another building. Roger Kimball captures the tactic well in his book The Long March: How the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s Changed America: “The long march through the institutions signified in the words of [Herbert] Marcuse, ‘working against the established institutions while working in them’. By this means—by insinuation and infiltration rather than by confrontation—the counter-cultural dreams of radicals like Marcuse have triumphed.”3

Pat Buchanan described the tactic is a similar way. To change the culture, Gramsci argued, “would require a ‘long march through the institutions’—the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium [of the time], radio.”4

The Left learned this from what took place in the 1960s when their radical political agenda failed to accomplish its stated goals. Their radical agenda was shot down politically because the majority of Americans still retained a remnant of the older Christian worldview. The Left knew it would be necessary to capture those institutions that shape and mould children who would one day become cultural leaders. Once the heart and mind are captured, everything else follows, including politics. This is a major tactical manoeuver that most on the Right did not understand.

Antonio Gramsci’s philosophy for cultural and social change was the model for the new Leftists. Gramsci (1891–1937) considered Christianity to be the “force binding all the classes—peasants and workers and princes, priests and popes and all the rest besides, into a single, homogeneous culture. It was specifically Christian culture, in which individual men and women understood that the most important things about human life transcend the material conditions in which they lived out their mortal lives.”5  Gramsci broke with Marx and Lenin’s belief that the masses would rise up and overthrow the ruling “superstructure.” No matter how oppressed the working classes might be, their Christian faith would not allow such an overthrow, Gramsci theorized. Marxists taught “that everything valuable in life was within mankind.”6