Ben Johnson

The Passion of Sandra Fluke

Ben Johnson

The mainstream media have found their latest leftist martyr, Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke, who has been called an abrasive name by two talk show hosts after she testified, in essence, that Congress should gut the First Amendment because it mildly economically inconveniences the nation’s elite law students.

Sandra Fluke was barred from testifying before a House Oversight Committee hearing on religious freedom, because she had no intention to discuss the issue. The Democrats’ other witness, Barry Lynn, was invited but refused to come, a turn of events that led Virginia Democrat Gerald Connolly to charge the clergy who attended with being “complicit in the trampling of freedom.” (Trickle-down histrionics.) 

But Nancy Pelosi ensured that Fluke, the former head of Georgetown’s Students for Reproductive Justice, was allowed to address the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee on Monday.

The fact that Georgetown Law does not cover contraception for students, Fluke testified, created “untenable burdens that impede our academic success” and proved Georgetown does not “live up to the Jesuit creed.”

As a result, the school’s sisterhood had “suffered financially, emotionally, and medically,” she said. Surely when one thinks of the faces of deprivation, one thinks of Georgetown Law co-eds.

Contraception, she said, “can cost a woman over $3,000 a year during law school…that’s practically an entire summer’s salary.”

As proof the Freedom of Religion should be repealed, she said, “Forty percent of the women at Georgetown Law reported to us that they struggled financially as a result of this policy.”

That is, less than half of women she asked have told her they “struggled financially” while attending a $60,000-a-year school without holding down a full-time job.

She followed this datum by citing the tragic case of a woman who needed contraception to prevent ovarian cysts – and that, um, actually, Georgetown covered that. Case closed.

Craig Bannister points out at CNSNews.com, $3,000 is enough money to buy enough condoms to have “protected” sex 2.74 times a day every day for three years. Asking why religious institutions should have to foot the bill for such extravagant sexual behavior, Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday said the fact the Fluke “says that she must be paid to have sex…makes her a prostitute.” Drawing attention to Fluke’s testimony about a classmate who found out at the pharmacy that Georgetown doesn’t cover contraceptives, one of Glenn Beck’s cohorts joked the store’s paging system would call her a “skank” and “slut.” (See 2:00 in the video below.)

 

Such statements, however uncouth, are not usually a Congressional matter. These were.

Democratic Representatives Pelosi, Louise Slaughter, Rosa DeLauro, Eleanor Holmes-Norton, Carolyn Maloney, Elijah Cummings, and Diana DeGette issued a joint press release condemning the “vicious and inappropriate attacks,” which “are outside the circle of civilized discussion and that unmask the strong disrespect for women held by some in this country.”

But where were these defenders of decency and femininity when left-wing activists threatened to murder 14-year-old Sarah Crank, a homeschool student who dared to tell the Maryland state senate she opposed same-sex “marriage”?

This young lady’s crime was telling a hearing that was open to the public: “I really feel bad for the kids who have two parents of the same gender. Even though some kids think it’s fine, they have no idea what kind of wonderful experiences they miss out on.”

The Forces of Tolerance and women’s rights greeted the expression of traditional moral sentiments as doubleplus un-good and immediately rained hatred upon her early adolescent, female skull.

Comments posted about Miss Crank threatened:

    “If I ever see this girl, I will kill her. That’s a promise”;
    “I hope you get raped by your married parents”;
    “Her parents should be exterminated”; and
    “Kill this child and his [sic] parent, for my 11 birthday would be a wonderful gift, thanks.”

Yet aside from a handful of websites, her treatment was not reported at all, while the nation has been treated to saturation coverage of the Passion of Sandra Fluke.

(Click “like” if you want to end abortion! )

When the Left is not celebrating the death of Andrew Breitbart, praying for Rush Limbaugh’s kidneys to fail, or writing an apologia for murdering newborn children, they castigate their opponents as angry, violent, potential terrorists.

Physician, heal thyself.

Sarah Crank is threatened with death for saying every child deserves a mother and a father. Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani faces the death penalty in Iran for converting from Islam to Christianity. Chen Guangcheng is gravely ill following vicious beatings, home imprisonment, and separation from his family for exposing China’s vicious “one child” policy. Indeed, 3,288 babies were killed in the United States today without ever seeing the light of day, but not before making a lifelong mark on their mothers’ hearts and psyches.

There are a host of people whose mistreatment elicits my sympathies before the plight of Sandra Fluke. Perhaps they merit an iota of the media coverage that she has been accorded.

Ben Johnson is a journalist for LifeSiteNews.com. He maintains his own website, TheRightsWriter.com.

 

 

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15 contradictions you have to believe to fit in with pop culture

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By Ben Johnson

One of the great quotations of our time is from James Burnham, a former Trotskyite Communist-turned-conservative who became an editor at National Review.

Fifty years ago, he wrote in his book Suicide of the West that “Modern liberalism, for most liberals, is not a consciously understood set of rational beliefs, but a bundle of unexamined prejudices and conjoined sentiments. The basic ideas and beliefs seem more satisfactory when they are not made fully explicit, when they merely lurk rather obscurely in the background, coloring the rhetoric and adding a certain emotive glow.”

To compensate for five decades of public education and pop culture, let's simplify Burnham's message to say that most left-wingers do not base their views on facts but on their feelings.

The truth of Burnham's observation can be proven by examining the cavernous gulch that exists between the ideas modern pop culture idols must believe and espouse at the same time. For example, to be a sexual revolutionary in good standing, you must believe:

  • That someone's sex is an infinitely malleable social construct that can be changed at will, but who someone feels the desire to have sexual intercourse with is permanently fixed and can never be altered, even if the person wants to change it. 
     
  • That capitalism is evil, and that in our corporatist society every big business will lie, cheat, steal, and possibly kill its own customers for the sake of short term profit – except Big Abortion.
     
  • That government should more closely regulate every corporation in the world for health and safety standards – except the abortion industry.
     
  • That conservatives are waging a “war on science” – and that scientists have never determined when life begins.
     
  • That gay “marriage” is “inevitable,” because the rapid, tidal wave sea change in public opinion on the issue of same-sex “marriage” proves that the polls can never, ever change again.
     
  • That it's wrong to abuse a position of power to dictate private health care decisions, especially about birth control and abortion – unless you are telling your boss or the U.S. taxpayer that he has to pay for your birth control and abortion(s).
     
  • That feminism frees women to have it all, as long as their children and home are not their whole world.
     
  • That there is no difference between the races or sexes of mankind – and that we need special testing scores and government programs to compensate for those differences.
     
  • That eating chicken eggs is immoral but aborting a child should be available free, on demand, and without apology.
     
  • That only women should make decisions on abortion – and that men have abortions.
     
  • That teens and preteens are responsible enough to decide whether to have sex or do drugs, but they are not mature enough to pay for their own health insurance until they are 26.
     
  • That is it wrong to sexually objectify women – and that men should lust after all women regardless of their weight or appearance.
     
  • That the sex lives of Bill and Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, Barney Frank, and Ted Kennedy have no bearing on their fitness to serve in office. And the sex lives of Scott DesJarlais, David Vitter, Mark Foley, and Larry Craig are the only criteria determining whether they should hold office.
     
  • That there are no moral absolutes – and that is absolutely certain.
     
  • That it's wrong to be prejudiced against anyone because of their race, sex, religion, or ideology, and it's certainly wrong to base your social life around these artificial distinctions. But you would already know that if you weren't an ignorant, closed-minded, racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, knuckle-dragging, Neanderthal, rural, Christian, white, cisgendered male. Which is why I'm unfriending you on Facebook.

This far-from-complete list of contradictions affirms the words of a greater writer than Burnham or I, who wrote, “A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.” Sorry, double-minded men or womyn.

So, which ones did I miss?

Cross-posted at TheRightsWriter.com.

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Prayer alert – Pope Francis family members killed in car crash

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By Ben Johnson

The Pope prays for the whole world every day; today, he is asking the world to pray for him.

Three relatives of Pope Francis – including two infants – have died and one remains hospitalized after a car wreck in Argentine overnight.

According to a Vatican spokesman the Pope's 38-year-old nephew, Horacio Bergoglio Emanuel, was driving his family over a mountain road near the city of Cordoba when his Chevy Spin collided with the back of a truck.

Emanuel is the son of the Pontiff's late brother, Alberto Bergoglio.

The accident killed Emanuel's wife, Valeria Carmona, as well as their two children, ages two years old and eight months old, respectively.

The collision took place just as Pope Francis returned from a trip to South Korea, where he visited a cemetery dedicated to aborted children and strongly called the world to pursue moral truth.

Vatican spokesman the Reverend Federico Lombardi said that "the pope was informed about the tragic accident.”

“He is deeply pained," he said.

The pope asks "all who share in his grief to unite with him in prayer."

Please feel free to pray in your own words, in your own way, or to share some of these traditional prayer forms from different Christian traditions:

Catholic:

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen.

Eastern Orthodox:

Grant rest, O Lord, where the blessed repose, to the souls of Thy servants who have fallen asleep, and may their memory be eternal. Amen.

Anglican:

O God, whose mercies cannot be numbered: accept out prayers on behalf of Thy servants. and grant them an entrance into the land of light and joy, in the fellowship of Thy saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

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Mainstream media discover 6-wk-old story on Satanist ‘religious objection’ to pro-life laws

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By Ben Johnson

The media have been abuzz for the past 24 hours with a report that The Satanic Temple is demanding that women be excused from mandatory pre-abortion counseling on the grounds that it violates the religious teachings of Satanism. Indeed, there has been so much reporting that you may be tricked into believing it is news.

But the story is old hat to readers of LifeSiteNews. We reported the group’s decision more than six weeks ago.

The national spokesman of The Satanic Temple, “Lucien Greaves” (who was apparently born Doug Mesner), announced more than a month ago that abortion restrictions violate Satanic beliefs, and that same-sex “marriage” is a Satanic sacrament. “We [members of the demonic cult] feel we should protect women from superfluous procedures like the transvaginal ultrasound, with [a] religious exemption,” Greaves told a local media outlet at the time.

I brought this story to national attention in a piece on LifeSiteNews June 10. In fact, I did an entire radio segment on it on “As the Spirit Leads” Catholic radio program, based in Philadelphia. (And, ahem, you can contact me for other radio gigs.) A few other outlets have picked up the story since then.

Then the story made its way into the mainstream media in the usual way: A liberal group sent out a press release, a reporter barely rearranged its contents, and – voila! – journalism.

The Satanic Temple finally went through with its threat to lampoon religious objections. A letter (pdf) posted on its website yesterday states that the demon-worshiping body is “asserting a religious exemption from the burden of state-mandated ‘informational’ abortion materials for those who share their deeply held beliefs.”

The group says that warnings contained in such materials – e.g., that women suffer from post-abortion psychological trauma, and information linking abortion to an increased risk of breast cancer – are “'scientifically unfounded’ and ‘medically inaccurate’” and are therefore an affront to Satanic religious beliefs. The group has drawn up a letter that women may print and hand to their abortionist, telling him, “I trust that you will … keep me fully and accurately informed of my health based on science, not politics.”

Most reporters have likened this purported “religious objection” to the one Hobby Lobby successfully cited to opt out of the HHS mandate. Like most MSM reporting, that does a disservice to religion. The owners of Hobby Lobby place their faith in Jesus Christ at the center of all their decisions. The founders of The Satanic Temple do not actually believe in Satan at all.

“While the original thinking was that the Satanic Temple needed to hold to some belief in a supernatural entity known as ‘Satan,’ none of us truly believed that,” Mesner/Greaves told Vice.com. Thus, they have no religious beliefs to violate. He has been open about the fact that he and his largely unpublicized circle of followers intended the group to satirize those mostly evangelical and orthodox Catholic people who exert their First Amendment rights.

To that end, the inveterate publicity hounds have milked the media for every ounce of fame they could wring out of them. They defiled the grave of Fred Phelps’ mother, attempted to host a Black Mass at Harvard, and petitioned to erect a statue of Satan at the state capitol building in Oklahoma. Indeed, they have collected an untold sum of donations to build this yet-to-be-produced sculpture of the dark one, proving P.T. Barnum’s assertion about intelligence and obstetrics.

Expect more in the future. The Satanic Temple says this is “the first campaign in a series of Women’s Health [sic] initiatives the Satanic Temple intend [sic] to make public in the near future.” (Any actual religious group that so mangled the English language would have seen its errors highlighted in media coverage.)

The mainstream media love Mesner, et. al., for two reasons. Reporting the jokesters’ actions allows the media elite to attack the nation’s moral, faithful majority via proxy. And it lets them pretend they are covering news in a timely manner, reinforcing their delusion that they are actually journalists.

To read what the mainstream media will report tomorrow – and what it is covering up today – keep reading LifeSiteNews.

Cross-posted at TheRightsWriter.com.

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