Don’t know much about History… (Part 2)

 

In my last post I attempted to demonstrate how there is a creeping lack of knowledge affecting our younger generations.  I showed you the studies that indicated younger people did not know the fundamentals when it pertained to the United States.  There were statistics that reported a surprising number of students who did not know what we celebrated on the 4th of July, what the three branches of government are and how many colonies we originally established in the US.

 I told you that this lack of knowledge will continue to contribute to the trampling on our rights and liberties.  Freedoms that our founding fathers fought so hard to establish.  In the words of Edmund Burke, ‘Those who do not know history are destined to repeat it.’ 

 In light of the dismal statistics, I wanted to give you just a glimpse of how those rights can be whittled away at without more than a hint of complaint.   It’s a simple formula; remove important information from education as to change history, create distractions and diversions to draw attention away from the right being altered, and completely annihilate the other side’s credibility as to detract from rebuttal and objection.

 National Anthem Banned From High School Hockey Games

The organization overseeing the hockey teams claim it’s because of the expensive ice rental time.  Is shaving 2 minutes off the clock going to save that much money?

 Media ‘gun control’ proponents argue there’s no longer any need to fear NRA

The National Rifle Association has lost political clout and is no longer an impediment to passing “gun control” legislation.

 California Senator Diane Feinstein is rumored to be going after the assault rifle. She not only wants them banned, but she would like them removed from each home that owns one. 

 The turning over of our sovereignty to the U.N. is something that every awake and aware American should be watching very diligently.  The U.N. is a master at sneaking their agendas in with subtle mandates, cleverly cloaking their true intention.

 I would recommend reading this whole article, but here are some highlights…

 Beating Election Depression Through Constructive Action: Three Urgent Arenas

Just hours after President Obama was re-elected, the U.S. backed a U.N. call to renew debate over a draft Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).

Section III, Paragraphs 7 and 8 of the Programme of Action[ATT] mandate that if a member state cannot get rid of privately-owned small arms legislatively, then the control of “customs, police, intelligence, and arms control” will be placed under the power of a board of UN bureaucrats operating out of the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs.

 Did you catch that?  The U.N. ultimately wants all guns accounted for so they can eventually remove them from everyone. 

 Then there is the law of the Sea Treaty, which the U.N. proclaims would subordinate U.S. naval and drilling operations beyond 200 miles of our coast to a newly established U.N. bureaucracy.’  This all means that, in essence, we would turn our control over to other countries to control us. 

 There is also the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.  Sound innocuous, but it is definitely not.  It declares that children have the right to be happy and fulfilled, but they also have the right to comprehensive sex education, in which all topics are discussed, in every school (which would include private).  It also contains language stating that members not force or even take, their children into church, that there should be no guns in the house, and children cannot be grounded if it becomes a danger to their psyche.   The Rights of the Child would be monitored by government.  (For more information, go to parentalrights.org)

 There are more issues in the article.  I urge you to read it for yourself.  Then do as I did; take the Resolution or the Treaty and look that up to see what it’s really about and then take action with your individual Congressperson. 

 Google: ‘Government surveillance is on the rise’

The U.S. government asked for access to 7969 people’s private email accounts in the first half of 2012. 

 And finally:

 Average 68 new regulations per day from Obama administration

Giving substantial power to departments and agencies with unelected officials that can dramatically alter commerce through rules and regulations instead of legislated and debated laws is a dangerous road to walk down for America.  These officials and ‘rule makers’ will never face an election, nor have to deal with public opinion.  They are simply allowed to do whatever they want with the freedoms of the people as they see fit while facing little resistance.

 There are more issues on the table than these.  I just chose a few to highlight what is going on all around us.  If you’re ignorant of history, you will miss the similarities when they rise to the surface. 

 Take for example the Convention on the Rights of the Child.  On its face, it sounds decent; guidelines for helping your child become the best person he or she can be; reminders. 

 However, here is one of the proclamations:

The child shall be protected from practices which may foster racial, religious and any other form of discrimination. He shall be brought up in a spirit of understanding, tolerance, friendship among peoples, peace and universal brotherhood, and in full consciousness that his energy and talents should be devoted to the service of his fellow men.

 Sounds okay until you realize that it means as a parent you cannot decide if your child should go to church, or have an exclusive theology. 

 After reading all this gloomy information, what is there to do?

 Well, for starters you can educate yourself.  If you don’t remember anything from your Civics books, give yourself a refresher.  There are books, websites, computer programs, all designed to educate you about whatever you want to learn.  Just be sure and do your due diligence and cross-check information often.

 Read the news!  You have an obligation to preserve this country.  Sure, she’s had her blows over the years, but the next generation can have freedom as well if we can resist forces opposed to our great nation.  When you read the news, read it in light of the liberties this country was founded upon.

 Talk to others in your circle.  This information is great for you to know, but it won’t do any good outside of that if you don’t tell other people.  Encourage them to do some research on their own as well.

 I have an additional plan for myself.  As a writer, I’ve decided to embark on a historical journey and write about the things that have been left out of our children’s history books.  Using an informal survey, I found that no one I talked to had heard of the Black Robed Regiment.  Look up the information for yourself; they were an integral part of this nation’s history. 

 I believe others are educated in any subject when you make it interesting and relevant.  My way of doing that is a book.  What’s yours?

  When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.’” Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.” – Joshua 4.1-7

 

Born in the U.S.A.

 

Well, we have a new president.  Slight correction…we have reelected our current president to a new term in office.

 Many people showed up to their polling places last Tuesday to exercise their right to vote; which, incidentally, is not explicitly mentioned in the US Constitution. But do the people who voted on Tuesday know that, or anything else, about the way this country was founded and our legacy as a country?

 Moreover, do American citizens know about the country their living in; the issues, the parties, how our government works?

 In this election, the participation rate of young people was higher than in 2008; at 19% of all voters. 

 Massive Age Gaps in Voting for 2012 Elections

In 2012, according to exit polls, nationwide voters 18-29 years old comprised 19 percent of the electorate while voters over 65 years comprised 16 percent of the electorate. Most importantly, the voting patterns of the young and the old were mirror images of each other on Barack Obama and Mitt Romney as well as on key Senatorial candidates and ballot measures.   Massive age gaps emerged in exits polls in all four states with two-thirds of voters 18-29 voting in favor of marriage equality and only one-third of voters over 65 doing so.

 Researchers are predicting that young people (18-29) will comprise 38% of the vote.

 So, that all being said, what do young people know about the United States?

 Well, I turned to people who do this kind of research for a living and here is what I found:

 What the Public Knows about the Political Parties

People younger than 30 are much less likely than older Americans to be able to correctly associate several political leaders with their parties. Fewer than half of those younger than 30 correctly identify Nancy Pelosi and Franklin Roosevelt as Democrats (43% each). By contrast, three quarters of those 65 and older know that Pelosi and Roosevelt are Democrats. The gap between young and old is nearly as large on the item about John F. Kennedy’s party (28 points).

 Here are some statistics that may shock you.  Please don’t gloss over this; these students are our future:

 Poll: Many Teens Don’t Know July 4 History

More than a fifth of the survey respondents [high school students] didn’t know which country we declared our independence from; including 14 percent who thought it was France, not Britain.

The survey reported that 15 percent of U.S. teens didn’t know the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776. Nine percent thought we ratified the Constitution that day. (That didn’t happen for another 13 years.)

It found other gaps in their knowledge, as well: 19 percent couldn’t name the third branch of government, after the executive and judicial.

A significant percentage of teens weren’t sure who was doing the declaring, either — 17 percent didn’t know there were 13 original colonies

 As the researcher states, this means over 5 million high school teens do not understand the true meaning of Independence Day. 

 The next statements are truly shocking.  All of the following statements come from an article written by Naomi Wolf, a woman whose ideology I do not necessarily subscribe to, but in this situation, I can’t help but agree:

 Hey, Young Americans, Here’s a Text for You

According to a recent study by the National Center for Education Statistics, only 47 percent of high school seniors have mastered a minimum level of U.S. history and civics, while only 14 percent performed at or above the “proficient” level. Middle schoolers in many states are no longer required to take classes in civics or government. Only 29 states require high school students to take a government or civics course, leaving millions of young Americans in the dark about why democracy matters.

A survey released by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute in September found that U.S. high school students missed almost half the questions on a civic literacy test. Only 45.9 percent of those surveyed knew that the sentence “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal” is in the Declaration of Independence.

What does this mean for the future of our country?  Put very simply, history is already destined to repeat itself, and it would seem to be sped up when an uninformed population is growing.  This leaves these empty minds to be filled with any propaganda someone wants to tell them.

 Here’s a great example:

 When New Left activists of the 1960s started the antiwar and free speech student movements, they didn’t get their intellectual framework from Montesquieu or Thomas Paine: They looked to Marx, Lenin and Mao. It became fashionable to employ Marxist ways of thinking about social change: not “reform” but “dialectic”; not “citizen engagement” but “ideological correctness”; not working for change but “fighting the man.”

 Few young Americans understand that the Second Amendment keeps their homes safe from the kind of government intrusion that other citizens suffer around the world; few realize that “due process” means that they can’t be locked up in a dungeon by the state and left to languish indefinitely.

 This dangerous ignorance is confirmed by the Knight Foundation, which has found an alarming decline in student support for the First Amendment. In a 2004 survey, more than a third of the student respondents thought that the First Amendment went too far in guaranteeing freedom of speech and of the press. By 2006, the number who held that view had swelled to half.

 The whole article is extremely sobering and worth the read. 

 So now, to focus on what this all means for the United States today, and the headline is all that needs to be said:

 Americans Aged 18-29 Have A More Favorable Response To Socialism Than To Capitalism

Socialism: 49% Positive / 43% Negative

And Capitalism: 46% Positive / 47% Negative

 How easy is it for a population whose idea of news is the Colbert Report and the Daily Show to not comprehend what effect Socialism has on a society?  What or who will help them understand that the Tea Party is not just another euphemism for Tea Bagging? 

The “Daily Show” and “Colbert Report” have the youngest audiences of any outlet included in the survey. Large majorities of those who say they regularly watch the “Colbert Report” (80%) and the “Daily Show” (74%) are younger than 50; 55% of public is 18 to 49.

 That’s enough information for one day.  Tomorrow I want to show you what the effects of this lack of knowledge are having on our country and what we can do to stop the ravages on our society.  This may sound like hyperbole, but in fact the opposite is true.  A society must know its history to know where it needs to go. Hopefully when I show you the stories I’ve been reading you will see the seriousness of this situation we find ourselves in these days.

 Here’s a video of young people standing in line to vote in Boston.  It will confirm what all of these studies have found:

 An Informed Electorate? You Won’t Believe How Little These Voters Know About Our Gov’t

 For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.  – Romans 15:4

 

 

 

 

Vote Righteousness

 

I am a Christian:  An evangelical follower of Jesus Christ.  I wanted to state that first off, before I went anywhere else with this post. 

 I try to make the bible my fence line, my plumb line for making decisions. That does not mean that I go into decisions blindly; I make reasoned decisions, but I still measure my decisions with what God has to say about issues.  I really haven’t found a topic, or a decision, that I couldn’t make using scripture. 

 A professor in college gave the class a visual reminder of what following Christ looks like in our daily life.  He said that when farmers are forming their rows and driving their tractors, they focus on a point in the distance rather than looking down.  If they look down, they tend to veer off the path and not continue going in a straight line.  But if they fix their eyes on one particular spot, they will stay straight.  So, I fix my eyes on God and pray that my actions and decisions mostly reflect that.

 So where it comes to voting in the upcoming election, I do measure my vote in line with what God has to say about where our country is at, and where He is at in regards to respect in this nation.

  I must say that I was shocked and a bit disappointed when I read this headline tonight;

 

Evangelist Claims 1.6 Million Christians Will Write in ‘Jesus Christ’ for President on Tuesday

Apparently, Bill Keller, an internet preacher, is trying to convince Christians that voting for either presidential candidate is in essence a vote for Satan. According to Mr. Keller, “It is time for Christians, true followers of Jesus Christ, to rise up and say NO to satan this November! As I prophetically shared last November, if God allowed the upcoming election for President to be between President Obama and Mitt Romney, it would truly be satan flipping a two-headed coin with his head on both sides!”

 I have some thoughts on his opinion.  While I don’t necessarily see either candidate as Satan, I also do not see them as my Savior.  I believe it would be catastrophic as a Christian to see any political or religious leader as a substitute for Jesus.  What I would like is to see a politician do is stand for what made our country a great nation.  To be the country that helps other countries in their time of need.  A political leader that helps people develop and have the freedom to use the gifts and talents God has given to make our world a better place.  To do what the men of the Black Robed Regiment did when this nation was founded.

 The Black Robed Regiment was a group of American clergy that were vocal during the Founding Era.  The British blamed them for American Independence and historians have said, “There is not a right asserted in the Declaration of Independence which had not been discussed by the New England clergy before 1763.”

 But it was not just the British who saw the American pulpit as largely responsible for American independence and government, our own leaders agreed. For example, John Adams rejoiced that “the pulpits have thundered” and specifically identified several ministers as being among the “characters the most conspicuous, the most ardent, and influential” in the “awakening and a revival of American principles and feelings” that led to American independence. (Credit to Biblical Integrity and Teaching History)

 Take Harvard’s original motto:  ‘Truth for Christ and the Church.’  Princeton’s motto:  ‘Under God’s power she flourishes.’  Yale’s motto:  ‘Light and Truth.’  These institutions started out as Christian schools; as Harvard and Yale (originally Puritan) and Princeton (originally Presbyterian) once had rich Christian histories. Harvard was named after a Christian minister. Yale was started by clergymen, and Princeton’s first year of class was taught by Reverend Jonathan Dickinson.

 That was then and this is today.  Today is the constant shriek of ‘separation of church and state,’ that rings out any time a whiff of religion appears; usually a form of Judeo-Christian religion.  Kids fear speaking out in class, wearing clothing with Christian graphics, or not following the dictates of the other classmates and teachers.  Today we are told that we are evil and intolerant if we speak out on our beliefs. 

 There is an election tomorrow.  The election is for a man to lead our country.  Ultimately, I believe that God is in control of the election.  Will He give us what we want, or what we need? 

 I know I am in the minority, but I don’t care what the president’s religion is. That’s not to say that I don’t want to; I would.  But it seems to become impractical, and so, it’s as I said before, if we have a president that gives us the integrity as a nation, the encouragement and freedom to pursue our own dreams, and a man who listens to what Americans are saying, then as a Christian I can do what I want and need to do to spread the Gospel message in my little corner of the world. I want a president that upholds righteousness.  I can’t shirk my responsibility and expect future generations to bear the cost.

 As a commentator I read proclaimed, the biblical heroes would be looked upon with question today.  David was an adulterer, Moses committed murder, and the list could go on.  So that tells us that God has used people with what we would consider major flaws to do His will. 

Also, crucial to remember is there are many more people on our ballots then just the president.  There are congress choices, judges and even local government officials.  What they believe is sometimes even more crucial than the president, as they are the ones making decisions for us on a daily basis. 

 The bible tells us to appoint judges who know the laws of God.  We should be looking for politicians who uphold the value of unborn life.  Do we know how officials on the ballots we will mark feel about public declaration of God?  Have we done our due diligence?

 I think it’s important to remember that God doesn’t always give us the victory immediately.  We cannot look at one election as the measured sum of a long-term perspective.  We cannot abstain because we don’t see a candidate that measures 100%.

 What saddens me is that in an effort to placate a small percentage of the population, we went from our foundation as a nation, with people unafraid to speak truth and light, and swung as far away as we could to the other side, where nothing is tolerated in an effort to be tolerant.  The irony does not escape me. 

 To those calling for riots if the election doesn’t go in their ‘direction,’ I ask them to stop and reflect on what you are asking for.  Does this country need one more minute of divisiveness?  Do we need any segment of our population to feel alienated and shamed for their decision, or their skin color, or their belief in God? 

 We need renewal and optimism to again spread across our country.  We need to find a way to get together to work on issues that are truly important; caring for each other.  There is real pain in this country, and we just saw it increase tenfold on the East Coast, where people are starving, cold and dying.

 The country will only have leaders that reflect the values of those who voted for them.  If we want our values represented and upheld, preserved for our children, then we must go out and vote ourselves. 

 I will leave you with these thoughts from people who fought for our rights long ago-

 I apprehend no danger to our country from a foreign foe. . . . Our destruction, should it come at all, will be from another quarter – from the inattention of the people to the con­cerns of their government – from their carelessness and negligence.Daniel Webster

 To God and posterity you are accountable. . . . Let not your children have reason to curse you for giving up those rights and prostrating those institutions which your fathers deliv­ered to you. – Rev. Matthias Burnet (1803)

 Who would Jesus vote for?  I find that question almost laughable.  He wouldn’t vote for anyone.  He is already the king and He is already the Author and Creator.  And He gives us the freedom as a nation to make choices that determine our course.

 I stole the following Facebook post from a Christian radio DJ whose perspective I enjoy:

 God’s ways are not our ways.

God laughs at the plans of our “powerful” men. God accomplishes His purposes through humble hearts. Jesus showed us our idea of real power is upside-down.

He’s not subtle when making this point. When the King entered the capital, he rode a donkey, and they didn’t get it. They mocked him.

God’s ways are not our ways, and the true, enduring, graceful, good King? He’s not up for election.

 

Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people. PROVERBS 14:34

 

 When the righteous rule, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan.  Proverbs 29:2

 

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (Matthew 6:33 ESV)

 

Not a Snooze at All

I can’t get the words some newscasters said last week out of my head.  The last debate is history; people are talking about Hurricane Sandy (which I want to talk about soon), and of course the election, but I still hear the words of several newscasters from several different stations when they were talking about the last debate.

If you recall, the last debate was on foreign policy.  The newscasters’ general response; the American public finds this subject ‘a snooze.’  That the foreign policy debate was the least viewed because nobody was really interested in the topic.  My response; Why?

This century finds the world more interconnected and interdependent than any other time in the world’s history.  We can watch news shows from the other side of the globe in real time, we can see how one economy affects another on the stock market in minutes, and we can react to tragedies and wars and other situations instantaneously.

I want to direct your attention to several events going on in the world that may directly affect you.  At the very least, you should understand what’s going on to see how the US responds to certain issues so you can be informed about how domestic policies affect foreign policies.

The most important one for me is the story behind what’s going on in Libya.  As the story continues to unfold, there are unanswered questions and more information that is still coming out today.  I beg you; do your own research on the issue.  Find out what really happened to the Navy Seals and how their families were treated.  Make your own decisions accordingly; there is information out there if you look for it.  I’ll leave you with what one of the Seal’s father said to our government; “It’s better to die a hero than live a coward.”  You may not come to the same conclusions as I do, but I feel it is important to do some research before you vote next week.

Other headlines:

Sanctions on MS-13: Not Enough but a Good First Step   Two weeks ago, the Obama administration broke new ground by extending this designation [a significant transnational criminal organization] for the first time to a gang operating in the United States, the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13).  Today, the group operates throughout Central America and in at least forty U.S. states, according to a 2008 FBI report, and is reported to be spreading to Canada. Harrowing reports—like the gang’s prostitution of girls as young as twelve and execution-style shootings in a schoolyard of three students by former friends—motivated the Obama administration to target MS-13. (Any border town will tell you that the gang violence just continues to escalate.)

Syrian regime launches nationwide airstrikes   World powers remain divided on how to stop Syria’s crisis, with the U.S. and many Arab and European nations calling for Assad to step down while Russia, China and Iran continue to back the regime. But with the sides largely stalemated on the battlefield and little international appetite for military intervention, few expect the war to end soon.  “As long as the international community remains at odds, the needs, attacks and suffering will only grow.”

Experts weigh in on rise of Ukrainian Svoboda party    The radical right-wing Svoboda (“Freedom”) party, which openly admires the World War II pro- Nazi Ukrainian Insurgent Army, has secured 41 seats in the Ukrainian parliament and is expected to legitimize public displays of anti-Semitism.(If you remember a previous posting, a very similar pro-Nazi party has already attracted followers in Greece and it appears to be spreading to countries suffering from austerity measures.)

 The real reason China-Japan are locked in a territory dispute    Years of rapid growth have sent China’s fuel consumption soaring, and the country has been quicker than Japan in plumbing the East China Sea. Japan, which has relied heavily on nuclear power, has also seen its oil usage jump since its nuclear power plants went idle after the Fukushima nuclear power plant crisis last year. (Why is this important?  Well, China holds a lot of our debt and we traditionally get along with Japan, so whose side would we choose?)

 Al Qaeda’s Zawahri calls for kidnap of Westerners   “We are seeking, by the help of Allah, to capture others and to incite Muslims to capture the citizens of the countries that are fighting Muslims in order to release our captives,” he said, praising the kidnapping of Warren Weinstein, a 71-year-old American aid worker in Pakistan last year. (Do I have to explain why this is important?)

 Saudi King calls on UN to adopt blasphemy resolution   “I demand a UN resolution that condemns any country or group that insults religions and prophets,” he reportedly said. “It is our duty and that of every Muslim to protect Islam and defend the prophets.”  (Folks, this doesn’t seem to be going away.)

I could go on and on about stories like this that are in the news every day.  I read the news, I follow the headlines, and I dig a little deeper because I feel that it’s my responsibility to do so.  With all that goes on in the world, and the speed of media coverage, it’s very easy for stories to be hidden and never see the light of free press.

Now, you may not want to explore what’s going on in the world to the extent I do, and I understand that.  That’s partly why I write this; because I want my little corner of the world to become more informed so they can pray in a more focused direction and so that they can make better decisions about life in general.

I implore you to read the news for 10 minutes a day.  Go to different news sources.  I have a particular bent, as do most people, but I make sure to inform myself from all angles so I can get a complete picture.  Find a news outlet you can trust and read their coverage, then take a few more minutes to find another source that either verifies or disputes the first story.

I believe there is a distinct benefit to the instant news we can access today.  As we watch the world continue to evolve (or perhaps devolve), we can make accurate evaluations and decisions based on what we know.

I highlighted news of a more serious nature, but look for stories that warm your heart, because we need to be uplifted each day, knowing that God remains in control despite what current situations may look like.

‘Operation Bear’ sends tens of thousands of US teddy bears to kids at Israeli hospital   These bears [130,000] made a 5,600-mile journey from the United States all the way to the Middle East not only to find a new home but also to make ill children here feel a little bit happier.

Do what you can to inform yourself and others.

It is well with the man who deals generously and lends; who conducts his affairs with justice. For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered forever. He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.  His heart is steady; he will not be afraid, until he looks in triumph on his adversaries.  He has distributed freely; he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever; his horn is exalted in honor.  The wicked man sees it and is angry; he gnashes his teeth and melts away; the desire of the wicked will perish! – Psalm 112:5-10

  “But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth.  But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” – Luke 21:34-36