Monday, March 5, 2018

Commentary: Guns in America: The Parkland massacre: A bellwether for American morality, behavior.

Feb 26, 2018

Supposedly, the Parkland killer massacred because he’s mentally ill. I can’t work with that. We’re also told he possesses minimal social intelligence and his hatred, anger and lashing out are extreme. I can work with that. The killer’s minuscule social ability, extreme rebelliousness, hatred, anger and resentment toward authority, fostered his feeling for revenge.

What could have precipitated such extreme behavior? We’re taught we’re rational beings, and even the killer was sufficiently rational to organize, plan and execute his killings. But we don’t always act reasonably; we’re also emotional. Ultimately, we do what we do because we want to. We act on our will, our volition. Our wants determine our actions, and our beliefs determine our wants. So what of the killer’s moral beliefs?

Families have first crack at instilling moral values; then supporting organizations like religious institutions, Scouts, sports, etc. Finally, if these fail, we default to society’s cultural mores. The killer defaulted to society’s moral values, but which moral values?  In a Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed, law professors Amy Wax (Penn) and Larry Alexander (USD) described America’s pre-1960s moral behavioral norms. These traditional values include, “Get married before you have children and strive to stay married for their sake. Get the education you need for gainful employment, work hard and avoid idleness. Go the extra mile for your employer or client. Be a patriot, ready to serve the country. Be neighborly, civic-minded and charitable. Avoid coarse language in public. Be respectable of authority. Eschew substance abuse and crime.”

Americans’ traditional morality is theistic (God-centered), Biblically based; its economics is capitalism; its social structure is family-centered with individual liberty and responsibility. Its political philosophy is based upon faith and reason; it’s America First, conservative (classical liberalism).  Many Republicans embrace traditional morality.

Since the 1960s, America has developed an alternative “anti-culture” that’s promoted in media,  entertainment, education and government. Anti-culture morality is relativistic (nihilistic) materialistic humanism (man-centered), determined to acquire power to achieve its political ends at all costs. Its failure to acknowledge legitimate authority cultivates anarchy.  Anti-culture uses identity politics to divide people by race, ethnicity, sex, and gender to promote division and hatred, especially toward white men. Its economics is Marxism; its social structure is the political group. Its political philosophy is ideological, fostering world government and socialism.  Today’s Democrats support the anti-culture.

Fruits of anti-culture are: Too few American qualified for the jobs available, male working-age labor force participation at Depression-era lows, widespread opioid abuse, homicidal violence plagues inner cities, almost half of all children born out of wedlock and more raised by single mothers, many college students lack basic skills, and high school students rank below those from two dozen other countries, increased mass shootings, and 600K abortions annually-murder in the womb. 
Of America’s two divergent moral systems, the Parkland killer displayed anti-culture mentality, and 17 people died, unnecessarily. Preventing future Parkland-like murders requires our casting off the “anti-culture” and strengthening our traditional “family-oriented” culture. The Parkland murders are a bellwether for America’s moral culture and behavior.

Donovan (Mark) Quimby is a resident of Frederick County.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Vice President Pence Talks About The Future Of Abortion

Vice President Mike Pence continues to be a staunch pro-life advocate.

During his tenure as governor of Indiana, Pence made a name for himself as an unashamed, vocal proponent of the unborn. When he joined Donald Trump’s ticket as a running mate, I was quite skeptical of how his pro-life positions would square with the previously pro-choice/pro-abort Trump.

As I wrote in January, President Donald Trump has surprised me when it comes to advancing the cause of life in the United States. I had many doubts as to whether a former, abortion-supporting Democrat would be serious and proactive. While there is still much work to be done, I am happy to have been wrong as far as this is concerned.

Under the Trump administration, the following has occurred:
  •  Reinstatement of the Mexico City Policy
  • Appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court
  • Defunding of UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund)
  • The killing of Obama era regulation relating to Title X Funding
  • Department of Health and Human Services declared that life begins at conception

Of course, Planned Parenthood still receives half-a-billion in federal funding. Though Congress is under Republican control, it is doubtful that we will even see a serious attempt at defunding. The House would most likely have no problem passing such a measure. To pass in the Senate, however, 60 votes are needed. As it stands right now, this is impossible given the party breakdown and because we have pro-choice/pro-abort cowards like Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins on this side of the aisle.

In a speech this week before a major pro-life advocacy group, Pence praised this administration’s work thus far…

Pence said those measures showed “more progress in the last year in the cause of life than I have seen in public policy in all of my years” and claimed that “life is winning in America.”

…and relayed his hopes for the future.

But the vice president’s ultimate goal, as he publicly stated during the presidential campaign, is to overturn the landmark Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade, which said in 1973 that criminalizing abortion is a violation of a woman’s constitutional right to privacy.

“I truly do believe, if all of us do all that we can, that we will once again, in our time, restore the sanctity of life to the center of American law. But we have to do the work,” Pence told the audience in Tennessee.

He then encouraged the audience to keep up the opposition to abortion rights. “I mean, for all the progress since 1973, the resilience of this movement proceeding out of the heart of a compassionate nation, I just know in my heart of hearts that this will be the generation that restores life in America,” he said.

It’s plain to see that American society devalues life. We see it in cruelty to others as they are deemed worthless. We see it in mass shootings in our schools, churches, and places of entertainment. We see it in the number of unborn dead since Roe v. Wade was decided. As it stands right now, that number is near 60,000,000.

Whether or not such a decision is overturned remains to be seen. It would certainly take a special set of circumstances and shift on the actual court to even consider the possibility. We can’t change the fact that abortion is legal. However, we can support life-affirming policies.

As the facts clearly show, the Trump administration has done well to advance the protection of the unborn. Pence is right to be hopeful.

Follow Kimberly Ross on Twitter: @southernkeeks.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

DACA Recipient Praises Trump, Blasts Democrats for Using Him as a ‘Pawn’

By Onan Coca
February 13, 2018

Could this be a sign that things are beginning to change out their in the immigrant community at-large?

Probably not, but one could hope that more immigrants are also beginning to see the wisdom in Hilario Yanez’s words.
Yanez is a DACA program recipient, or a DREAMer, who has come to realize two things – President Trump has done a “great” job, and the Democrats are using DREAMers as political “pawns.” Yanez, and again, hopefully other DREAMers, have noticed that the President seems very willing to give the Democrats everything they want when it comes to DACA… and it’s the Democrats who seem unwilling to deal with President Trump.

He sees Democrat leadership playing games with the DACA debate in an effort to make the Republicans look bad and to help their own election chances. Meanwhile, President Trump and the GOP have offered not just amnesty to the DACA recipients but to all of the DACA eligible people in the USA. This concession is actually MORE than Democrats have asked for, and yet Democrats continue to drag their feet… why? Yanez thinks he understands why – the Democrats are just using him and his fellow DREAMers as pawns in their political games.
In a recent interview on Fox News, Yanez explained:

Three points I want to make about that. Number one is the Democratic leadership, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer really have no clear message, have been, you know, we have been confused. I think at the end of the day they have been using us as pawns.
The second point I want to bring in is they should have never shut down the government over DACA. We should have never held our American people and our military hostage. There is plenty of time on the table to fix this. March 5th is the deadline. And you can see Republicans already willing to do something about it as we speak.

And the last thing, point that I want to say is that look, Democrats, they owned all three branches of the government back in 2008 to 2011 and they still choose not to do anything. So at this point I am quite frustrated with the Democratic leadership.
While he sees the ugly partisanship the Democrats are displaying, Yanez also hopes that they’ll eventually come to the negotiating table and get a deal done.

I think at the end of the day you are looking at a president that’s all about results and it’s all about — at the end of the day, I think he needs to meet Democrats in the middle. And he is bringing this pathway to citizenship so that we can actually finally get something done immigration reform. At the end of the day in terms of legislation, you’re probably looking at one of the greatest presidents to get things done. I mean, look at the tax cuts. He got that done. Now he’s trying to do immigration reform. Now the next thing is infrastructure. So this guy, President Trump, is willing to work with Democrats but at the end the day it is the Democrats who don’t want to work with him.
During the interview Yanez also explains that he loves this country and he only wants the chance to serve it. “At the end of the day, when I hear the national anthem I get goosebumps all over me. I always pledged allegiance to the flag and I would never disrespect it. I would never take a knee and I would do anything to serve this country, to die for this country, and all I need is a chance,” he told Fox & Friends. It’s DREAMers like Yanez that are the reason President Trump is ready to extend amnesty, the question is… will the Democrats let him?


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Where Did The Hatred For The U.S. Flag Start


Code, Title 36, Chapter 10, Sec. 171...
During rendition of the national anthem, when the flag is displayed, all present (except those in uniform) are expected to stand at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. Or, at the very least, "Stand and Face It".
Senator Obama replied :
"As I've said about the flag pin, I don't want to be perceived as taking sides." "There are a lot of people in the world to whom the American flag is a symbol of oppression..." "The anthem itself conveys a war-like message. You know, the bombs bursting in air and all that sort of thing."
Obama continued: "The National Anthem should be 'swapped' for something less parochial and less bellicose. I like the song 'I'd Like To Teach the World To Sing'. If that were our anthem, then, I might salute it. In my opinion, we should consider reinventing our National Anthem as well as 'redesign' our Flag to better offer our enemies hope and love.  It’s my intention, if elected, to disarm America to the level of acceptance to our Middle East Brethren. If we, as a Nation of warring people, conduct ourselves like the nations of Islam, where peace prevails, perhaps a state or period of mutual accord could exist between our governments."
When I Become President, I will seek a pact of agreement to end hostilities between those who have been at war or in a state of enmity, and a freedom from disquieting oppressive thoughts. We as a Nation, have placed upon the nations of Islam, an unfair injustice which is WHY my wife disrespects the Flag and she and I have attended several flag burning ceremonies in the past".

"Of course now,
I have found myself about to become
The President of the United States and I have put my hatred aside.
 I will use my power to bring CHANGE to this Nation, and offer the people a new path. My wife and I look forward to becoming our Country's First black Family. Indeed, CHANGE is about to overwhelm the United States of America."
Yes, you read it right.
Please pass on without comment.
Just think, with the entire country knowing how
that man thought and believed,
 they still elected him
to run and represent the country two times.


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

A Word (of advice) From Henry Kissinger

By Walter Russell Mead

Feb. 5, 2018

When The Wall Street Journal asked me to become its Global View columnist, I immediately went for advice to the dominant figure in American foreign policy of the past 50 years: Henry Kissinger.

Asking Mr. Kissinger a question is a little like inquiring at the Oracle of Delphi: You never quite know what you are going to get. Some queries elicit long, learned analyses. Mr. Kissinger often deftly weaves together the motives of the leaders involved, the interests of the U.S., and the effect of American domestic politics on the range of available choices.

Some questions elicit a more lapidary response. In the aftermath of the Cold War, I once heard someone ask Mr. Kissinger what he saw as the most important trends in the world. I braced myself for an hour of sage but complex geopolitical monologue. Instead he replied with a single sentence, albeit one with more substance than most books published in the field: “You must never forget that the unification of Germany is more important than the development of the European Union, that the fall of the Soviet Union is more important than the unification of Germany, and that the rise of India and China is more important than the fall of the Soviet Union.”

My request for advice as a new columnist did not even merit a sentence; Mr. Kissinger had only a word for me. What a column on international affairs should seek to provide, he said, is “context.”

That short answer points to the heart of Mr. Kissinger’s worldview—and to the vast intellectual gap between him and most of the academics who study foreign affairs and the bureaucrats who carry it out. It has often been said, sometimes by Mr. Kissinger himself, that he is a “realist” while many of his critics are “idealists.” There is some truth there, and Mr. Kissinger’s most trenchant opponents attack what they characterize as his cynical willingness to achieve policy objectives through morally dubious or even reprehensible means. But the gap between Mr. Kissinger and the rest cuts deeper. He isn’t suspicious merely of rosy idealism; he is suspicious of those who think ideologically about foreign policy, reasoning down from first principles and lofty assumptions rather than grounding their analysis in the messiness and contradictions of the real world.

Unlike so many professors, policy makers and pundits on both the left and right, Mr. Kissinger does not believe the arc of history makes house calls. American values may one day prevail around the world, but no leader should base strategic calculations on a hope that Russia, China and Iran will turn into friendly liberal democracies in a relevant time frame. Nor would a wise policy maker assume that other powers share America’s interest in, for example, an end to the North Korean nuclear program—or any initiative aimed at making the international order more stable and secure. 

Oddly, the “conservative” Mr. Kissinger takes diversity much more seriously than many of his liberal critics. Historical study and a lifetime of experience have taught Mr. Kissinger the folly of assuming that Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping or Ayatollah Khamenei thinks like American leaders do or wants the same things. Each of these men and their supporters are grounded in cultural and historical imperatives that do not always mesh with ideas about Adam Smith, liberal order and win-win negotiating.

When Mr. Kissinger advises a columnist to focus on “context,” he is suggesting that there is value in helping readers to appreciate the kaleidoscopic variety and sometimes dizzying complexity of the forces at work on the international scene, and in explaining how those forces interact with American politics.

In 2018, this mission is more important than ever. After the Soviet Union’s collapse, the United States and its Cold War allies sought to spread Western institutions around the world, but that effort has ground to a halt. Support for free trade, free movement of capital, free speech and free government is in retreat in many places, the U.S. not excepted. Geopolitical rivals are trying to roll back American power, and longtime allies like Turkey are moving away from the West. The end of history has ended, and the world is suddenly looking more Kissingerian. 

It has never been more important to understand world events, and it has rarely been harder to do so. I look forward to the challenge of engaging with the Journal’s readers on the momentous geopolitical trends of our time, and I hope that this column can help, if only in a small way, prepare our country for the tests that lie ahead. 

Appeared in the February 6, 2018, print edition - WSJ