NewsThu Mar 15, 2007 - 12:15 pm EST
Pat Boone: Still letting his light shine defending life and family
Assistant Editor, The Interim Newspaper
As published in the March 2007 edition of The Interim
March 15, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Pat Boone is a descendant of the legendary U.S. pioneer Daniel Boone. He has been a top-selling recording artist, the star of his own hit TV series, a movie star, a Broadway headliner and a best-selling author in a career that has spanned half a century. During the classic rock and roll era of the 1950s, he sold more records than any artist except Elvis Presley.
Now 72, Boone continues to be a beacon for moral values in the entertainment industry. He is also a regular columnist for the leading internet news site WorldNetDaily.com, commenting on important issues such as marriage, evolution, the de-Christianization of Christmas and more.
The Interim recently arranged for this exclusive interview with Boone by telephone, in which we asked him about his latest endeavours, his thoughts on the moral decline in North America and what he believes the role of the arts should be in fostering a healthy society.
More information on Boone can be found at his websites: patboone.com, patsgold.com and formycountry.us.
The Interim: What are your latest projects; what have you been up to lately?
Pat Boone: I’ve got a brand new book called Pat Boone’s America: 50 Years. It’s a memoir, a big table-top kind of book with pictures, a lot of surprises, a whole account of my career, life and interaction with kings, presidents, Presleys and Eldridge Cleaver (laughs) and all kinds of people. It’s also a look at our society, our culture, and the way it has changed in the last 50 years – technologically, in some ways, very good, promising, helpful. In other ways, not good. I talk about the spiritual, moral climate that we’re all living in and that has changed so dramatically in the last 50 years, maybe more than many people realize.
And then there’s two or three new albums – one is of R and B classics with the original performers; new versions of their classics that we do together. Like James Brown and Earth, Wind and Fire. Smokey Robinson and the Four Tops. Sister Sledge and Kool and the Gang. And on and on. Great songs and very good new versions of those hits. I’ve written a song about our National Guard, For My Country, the ballad of the National Guard (for) the volunteer men and women who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and stationed in Korea and other places around the world. Because we face an enemy who does not wear uniforms and isn’t restricted by national boundaries. There’s a plethora of stuff I had the opportunity and felt the need to do.
The Interim: I wanted to hone in especially on what you said about what’s been happening the past 50 years. We’re certainly seeing a huge moral decline in the West and, as you might know, in Canada we’ve already legalized same-sex “marriage.” I’m wondering why you think we’ve descended to this point and what can we do to try to turn things around.
Pat Boone: That’s a great question and one I ponder all the time. The main thing is – I read through the Bible every year from beginning to end in a programmed way … Today, I read in Proverbs, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’” We have a lot of educated fools in important positions, particularly in education, media and some in government. They think they are so wise and they are determined to be “progressive” and to liberate society from these notions of there being a God to whom we are responsible. To a great extent, they’re succeeding.
As you take God out of school in our country, forbid children to have even a voluntary general-type prayer at the beginning of the day, take the 10 Commandments off any type of public display, keep on removing any mention or notion of God and responsibility, then of course we find ourselves living in a society where there aren’t any hard and fast rules, no absolutes, everything relative and changing, one man’s opinion is as good as anyone else’s … It becomes sort of a moral anarchy. That’s what we’re seeing …
I think there is only one answer …“Read the directions”… We won’t ask directions … We just keep coasting along, doing what we think we want to do, what we think will gratify us, getting worse and more and more lost and messed up. The only answer is to get out the manufacturer’s handbook and read the directions. The Creator who put it all together and knows how it works will instruct us. But if we think we can muddy along on our own, we’ll just get more and more lost.
The Interim: You’re known for having refused music and movie roles in the past that conflicted with your morals and principles. What role do you think the arts can play in terms of a revival?
Pat Boone: With every freedom comes a responsibility. Unless those freedoms are exercised with a sense of responsibility, they becomes licences – the illicit freedom to do whatever you want and feel like … That’s what’s happening with so much of entertainment, music and everything else. It becomes more and more depraved, debauched, violent, sordid, dark, hedonistic … I think any healthy society must censor to survive … Art should be limited in the same ways. We’ve had decency and obscenity laws in the past … Now, all the limits and all of that are just disappearing. We’re letting it happen. I’m not sure the citizenry will ever gather the gumption to say, “Wait a minute. We’re going to impose some limitations. We don’t want our kids buried under profanity, obscenity, filth, immorality. We’re insisting that we have some guidelines.” That may sound prudish to some; okay, let it be.
Our great American philosopher Ben Franklin said a long time ago …“Only a moral and virtuous people are capable of freedom.” The more corrupt and vicious a society becomes, the more it has need of masters. I chew on that and think about it a lot … Otherwise, freedom becomes licence, anarchy and eventually the society collapses.
The Interim: The Christian music market has grown exponentially in recent years. Do you see that as a positive development?
Pat Boone: Yes, of course. I’ve been involved in Christian, gospel music for my whole career. I had the first million-selling gospel album. It’s called Hymns We Love … I’m now in the Gospel Music Hall of Fame … I do it because I enjoy it and because it is a positive influence and reflection of a vibrant and real spiritual life and recognition, acknowledgement and gratitude to a God who cares about us. You sure don’t get much of that in the pop world.
It bugs me no end when, at awards shows, some rapper whose records are filled with sexual innuendo and even admonitions to violence and sexual braggadocio, gets an award and thanks “my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.” They wear a cross and are thanking God. I can almost hear God from heaven saying, “Look, I had nothing to do with that. Don’t attach my name to that filth and decadence …”
I want to let people know about a place where people can sort of link arms and say, “Wait a minute. We are concerned.” We do recognize what’s going on here and if we’re going to retain a society we inherited and try to pass it on to our kids and grandkids, we’re going to have to defend it. We’re going to have to make some personal insistences and demands on behaviour. That’s not easy. It’s not easy. It’s unpopular.
For an entertainer like me, you can be labelled a prude, a religious whacko or whatever. But I’m not. I’m a Columbia University graduate and know what’s going on in the world. But I don’t like a lot of what I see because I care about my kids’, grandkids’ and our two nations’ futures.
The Interim: We appreciate your being a positive influence in the entertainment industry and wish you all the best in the coming years as you continue.
Pat Boone: I thank you and I’m sure glad you’re where you are, shining a little light!
Highlights of Pat Boone’s life
- Born in Jacksonville, Fl., June 1, 1934.
- Boone is a direct descendant of the American pioneer Daniel Boone.
- Grew up in Nashville, Tenn.
- Boone married Shirley Lee Foley, daughter of country music great Red Foley and singer Judy Martin, in 1953.
- Four daughters: Cherry, Lindy, Debby, and Laury.
- Began recording in 1954.
- 1955 version of Ain’t That a Shame was a huge hit, selling far better than Fats Domino’s original version.
- His recording of the theme song from the 1957 film April Love topped the charts for six weeks and was nominated for an Academy Award.
- Graduated from Columbia University in New York City in 1958.
- Refused a role opposite the decade’s reigning sex symbol, Marilyn Monroe.
- From 1957 to 1960, he hosted his own television series The Pat Boone/Chevy Showroom.
- A devout born-again Christian, he was raised in the conservative Church of Christ, but has been a member of a Pentecostal church, the Church on the Way, since the late 1960s.
- Appeared in 15 films, including Bernardine, April Love and State Fair.
- In 1961, he released Moody River, which was to be his fifth and final number one song.
- In the 1970s, he switched to gospel and country.
- In the 1970s, the Boone family toured as gospel singers and made gospel albums, such as The Pat Boone Family and The Family Who Prays.
- In 2003, the Gospel Music Association of Nashville, Tenn. recognized his gospel recording work by inducting him into its Gospel Music Hall of Fame.
‘Little miracles’: Mom gives birth to naturally-conceived quintuplets after refusing ‘selective reduction’
AUSTRALIA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- A 26-year-old Australian mom has given birth to five healthy babies, all conceived naturally, after refusing the doctor’s advice that she must abort three of them in order to give the remaining two a better chance at life.
“After my initial ultrasound I was told I could consider the selection method to give 2 babies the best chance in life,” wrote mom Kim Tucci in a Facebook post last September.
“I watched a YouTube video on the procedure and I cried. I could never do that! Was I selfish for not giving two the chance of 100% survival? All I knew is that I already love them and that every heart beat I heard I connect with them more. For me life starts when a heart starts beating and all I know for sure is that I will do whatever it takes to bring them into this world healthy,” she wrote.
Last Thursday Kim and her husband Vaughn welcomed the five new members into their family — one boy and four girls —increasing the number of their children from 3 to 8. The babies were born at 30 weeks, 10 weeks early, due to insufficient space in Kim’s womb. They weighed on average about 2.5 pounds.
The quintuplets’ story began last March, after Kim and Vaughn had been trying for six months to conceive just one more child for their family. Due to health complications, Kim wondered if she would ever become a mother again.
After what she thought was an extra long cycle, she decided to take a pregnancy test.
“I was feeling tired and a little nauseated and thought I would take a pregnancy test just to get the ‘what if’ out of my head. To my shock and utter excitement it was positive,” she wrote on a Facebook post.
The parents got the shock of their lives when doctors confirmed in an ultrasound examination that there was not one baby, but five.
“After a long wait for the ultrasound we finally went in. The sonographer told me there were multiple gestational sacks, but she could only see a heart beat in two. I was so excited! Twins!”
“I was moved to another machine for a clearer view and had the head doctor come in and double check the findings. She started to count, one, two, three, four, five. Did i hear that correctly? Five? My legs start to shake uncontrollably and all i can do is laugh. The sonographer then told me the term for five is ‘quintuplets,’” Kim wrote.
Even though Kim began to feel stretched to the limit with all those human lives growing inside her, she chose to focus on her babies, and not herself, referring to them as “my five little miracles.”
“It's getting harder as each day passes to push through the pain, every part of my body aches and sleeping is becoming very painful. No amount of pillows are helping support my back and belly. Sometimes I get so upset that I just want to throw my hands up and give in.”
“Sometimes my pelvis becomes so stiff I can barely walk and my hips feel like they are grinding away constantly. I'm finding it hard to eat as I basically have no room left in my stomach, and the way it is positioned it's pushed all the way back with the babies leaning against it.”
“My skin on my belly is so stretched its painful and hot to touch. It literally feels like I have hives! No amount of cream helps relieve the discomfort. I have a lot of stretch marks now. Dealing with such a huge change in my body is hard.”
“Is it all worth it? Yes!!!! I will keep pushing through,” she wrote in one Facebook post days before the babies were born.
The newborns' names are Keith, Ali, Penelope, Tiffany, and Beatrix. They were born at King Edward Memorial Hospital in Subiaco, Western Australia. Mother and babies are reported to be doing well.
UN rights chief tells Catholic countries to legalize abortion over Zika virus: bishops and cardinal react
GENEVA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- The United Nations, following the lead of international abortion activists, is now urging Latin American countries hit by the mosquito-borne Zika virus to lift restrictions on abortion for pregnant women who have contacted the virus and whose pre-born children may be at risk for birth defects, including having smaller than normal heads.
The UN human rights office said today that it is not enough for South American countries to urge women to postpone pregnancy without also offering them abortion as a final solution.
“How can they ask these women not to become pregnant, but not offer… the possibility to stop their pregnancies?” UN spokeswoman Cecile Pouilly told reporters.
UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said that governments should make available contraception and abortion services.
“Laws and policies that restrict (women’s) access to these services must be urgently reviewed in line with human rights obligations in order to ensure the right to health for all in practice,” he said.
But Brazil’s bishops strongly asserted yesterday that efforts should be made to eradicate the virus, not the people who may be infected by it.
The disease is “no justification whatsoever to promote abortion,” they said in a statement, adding that it is not morally acceptable to promote abortion “in the cases of microcephaly, as, unfortunately, some groups are proposing to the Supreme Federal Court, in a total lack of respect for the gift of life.”
Honduras Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga has also come out strongly against the notion of “therapeutic abortions” as a response to the problem. Unlike Brazil where abortion is legal in the case of rape or health of the mother, abortion remains entirely illegal in Honduras.
“We should never talk about ‘therapeutic’ abortion,” the cardinal said in a homily at a February 3 Mass in Suyap. “Therapeutic abortion doesn’t exist. Therapeutic means curing, and abortion cures nothing. It takes innocent lives,” he said.
While the World Health Organization (WHO) declared an international public health emergency February 1 on account of concerns over the virus, critics have pointed out, however, that not one death as resulted from the virus. Even on WHO’s own website the virus is described in mild terms.
“It causes mild fever and rash. Other symptoms include muscle pain, joint pain, headache, pain behind the eyes and conjunctivitis. Zika virus disease is usually mild, with symptoms lasting only a few days,” the website states. “To date, there have been no reported deaths associated with Zika virus,” it added.
Critics suspect that the crisis is being manipulated to advance an anti-human agenda on the pre-born.
“Is Zika, actually, a hideous virus that threatens to spread uncontrollably across the world creating an army of disabled children with tiny heads and low IQ’s? Or might this be a willful misinterpretation of the scarce data to manipulate public opinion and legislatures?” wrote pro-life critic Mei-Li Garcia earlier this week.
“It becomes very clear that the publicity surrounding this story has a very little to do with medicine and a lot to do with a convenient crisis that is being used by those pushing for the legalization of abortion around the world,” she wrote.
Hillary’s litmus test for Supreme Court picks: They must ‘preserve Roe v. Wade’
DERRY, NH, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) - Hillary Clinton has a litmus test for Supreme Court nominees - several, in fact. At a Democratic event on Wednesday, Clinton unveiled her criteria in selecting a judge for the nation's highest court.
“I do have a litmus test, I have a bunch of litmus tests," she said.
"We’ve got to make sure to preserve Roe v. Wade, not let it be nibbled away or repealed,” she said.
That echoes her recent call to arms speech before Planned Parenthood last month, when she stated that taxpayers must fund abortion-on-demand in order to uphold the "right" of choice.
“We have to preserve marriage equality,” Clinton said, referring to last summer's Obergefell v. Hodges case, a 5-4 ruling that redefined marriage nationwide. “We have to go further to end discrimination against the LGBT community."
Her views differentiate her from the Republican front runners. Ted Cruz has called the court's marriage ruling "fundamentally illegitimate," and Donald Trump told Fox News Sunday this week that he would "be very strong on putting certain judges on the bench that I think maybe could change things." Marco Rubio has said he won't "concede" the issue to the one-vote majority.
All Republican presidential hopefuls say they are pro-life and will defund Planned Parenthood.
Her husband, Bill Clinton, raised the makeup of the Supreme Court early last month in New Hampshire, saying it receives "almost no attention" as a campaign issue.
On Wednesday, Hillary said "the next president could get as many as three appointments. It’s one of the many reasons why we can’t turn the White House over to the Republicans again.”
Clinton said her judicial appointees must also reverse the Citizens United ruling on campaign finance and oppose a recent decision striking down a portion of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. In 2013's Shelby County v. Holder, justices struck down Section 4(b) of the act, which said that certain states and jurisdictions had to obtain permission from the federal government before changing their voting laws.
At one time, most politicians frowned upon any "litmus test" for judicial nominees, emphasizing the independence of the third branch of government. "I don't believe in litmus tests," Jeb Bush told Chuck Todd last November.
But with the rise of an activist judiciary in the middle of the 20th century, constitutionalists have sought to rein in the power of the bench.