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If First Amendment isn’t just about Christianity, we have to allow Satanism

Bryan Fischer

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The Orange County School Board in Florida is getting ready to ban God.
The board had allowed an evangelical group to passively distribute Bibles on its campuses. Passive distribution means simply that nobody is handing them out. They are placed on a table and students can come by and pick one up if they want. If they don’t want one, they don’t have to go get one.
But once members of the Satanic Temple publicly declared their intentions to distribute material on the “philosophy and practice of Satanism,” the board re-evaluated its stand and decided not only to ban Satan from its campuses but God too. No longer will Bible distribution be allowed on its campuses.
This incident serves as a prime example of how the gross distortion of the First Amendment is destroying religious liberty and turning Christian literature into the educational equivalent of pornography, something that is considered so toxic it must be kept from the eyes of inquisitive students.
I have written on numerous occasions that the purpose of the First Amendment, as Justice Joseph Story declares in his monumental history of the Constitution, was only to protect the free exercise of the Christian faith and to prevent the selection and designation of one Christian denomination as the official church of the United States.
Story said the purpose of the Founders in crafting the First Amendment was not to “countenance much less to advance Mohammedanism, Judaism or infidelity…but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects” (meaning denominations).
But because low-information educators have so mangled our history, and activist judges have so mangled our Constitution, most Americans, even educated ones, do not understand this basic fact about the First Amendment: that by the word “religion” in the First Amendment, the Founders meant only the various expressions of Christianity.
In addition, the Founders restrained only Congress by the First Amendment, as the first word in the First Amendment plainly indicates (“Congress shall make no law…”). The regulation of every other form of religious expression is reserved to the states, who then have complete latitude to restrain or permit religious expression as they see fit.
In fact, nine of the first 13 states had “established” churches, specific Christian denominations that were given preference in law and supported with taxpayer dollars. This was perfectly constitutional.
But if we ignore the first word in the First Amendment (“Congress”) and twist and distort the word “religion” to make it mean not Christianity but “any system of supernatural belief,” then there is no way to prevent satanists from distributing literature in our public schools, from having satanist invocations in our city council meetings and satanist chaplains in our military.
It’s worthy of note that the first act of public education in America, in colonial Massachusetts, was known as the “Old Deluder Satan Act,” since its purpose was to provide every child with the ability to read and think so that he would not be deceived by the father of lies.
But now the Prince of Darkness, in our befuddled and historically ignorant fashion, has been given equal standing with the Creator of the universe. Can this possibly be what the Founders intended? Of course not.
Under the Constitution, as bequeathed to us by the Founders, Orange County is perfectly free to authorize the distribution of Bibles and forbid the distribution of satanic literature. Perhaps the Founders knew what they were talking about.

Bryan Fischer is a senior columnist for Cowger Nation, and the radio host of Focal Point, where he provides expertise on a wide range of public policy topics.

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The Pilgrims tried Communism – it didn’t work.

Bryan Fischer

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When we point out that neither Socialism nor Communism have ever worked, their supporters simply smile indulgently and say, “Well, that’s just because the right people haven’t tried it yet.”

On that count, they are just plain wrong. Communism had its purest test in the earliest days of American history, and was an abysmal, abject, utter failure. And it was tried by a small group of people who were committed to each other, devoted to God, and were hard-working and industrious. If this crew couldn’t make it work, nobody’s ever going to make it work.

Our Pilgrim forefathers landed near Plymouth Rock in the fall of 1620. They had left England aiming for the Virginia colony, but were blown off course and landed in Massachusetts instead. Left on their own, they established their own form of government and their own economy.

The form of government they established is enshrined in the Mayflower Compact, which was the first constitution in America established by the consent of the governed. It thus became the model for our federal Constitution and for the constitutions of the individual 50 states.

Here’s how the Mayflower Compact began (language modernized, emphasis mine throughout):

In the name of God, Amen. We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread sovereign Lord, King James…having undertaken, for the the glory of God, and advancement of the Christian faith, and honor of our king and country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia…

In the presence of God, and one of another, covenant & combine our selves together into a civil body politic…to enact…just & equal laws…as shall be thought most meet & convenient for the general good of the Colony, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience…

In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape Cod the 11th of November, 1620 A.D.

It’s worth observing, as data points in the conversation about whether the United States was founded as a Christian nation, the frequent references to God and the explicit reference to the ultimate purpose of the colony being to promote and to advance the Christian faith in parts unknown. God’s calling on America (a column for another day) is to fulfill the Great Commission of Christ, “to make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). The Plymouth Colony was committed to doing its part, and set this noble goal for all settlers who were to follow them to our shores.

Not only did they establish their own form of government – essentially a constitutional republic – but their own economy as well. As a “company” colony, Plymouth Plantation operated under bylaws established by the Virginia Company of London.

These bylaws set up a communal system for the Pilgrims, in which all capital and all profits for the first seven years were to remain in “the common stock.” There was no such thing as private property; all property and all business activities belonged to the collective with none of it belonging to individuals or individual families.

During these seven years, “all profits & benefits that are got by trade, traffic, trucking, working, fishing, or any other means of any person or persons remain still in the common stock.” Everyone was “to have their meat, drink, apparel, and all provision of the common stock and goods.”

Then, in this utopian scheme, at the end of seven years “the capital & profits, viz. the houses, lands, goods and chattels, be equally divided betwixt the adventurers and the planters.”

It, just as communism does today, sounded ideal and noble and well, Christian. It would be share and share alike, everyone putting aside his own aspirations for the accumulation of wealth and property in order to selflessly devote all his energies and talents to the common good.

But it wasn’t ideal or noble, or even Christian. It was Marxism before Marx, and like all socialistic and communistic systems, due for an agonizing and spirit-crushing collapse.

Governor William Bradford, in Of Plymouth Plantation, did not hesitate to describe the experiment as a “failure.” And he made it clear that the failure was not in the people but in the system. “The failure of that experiment of communal service, which was tried for several years, and by good and honest men, proves the emptiness of the theory of Plato and other ancients, applauded by some of later times,- that the taking away of private property, and the possession of it in community, by a commonwealth, would make a state happy and flourishing; as it they were wiser than God…”

Communism, in other words, was a display of arrogance and human conceit, for it was predicated on the silly belief that man knows better than God. The result was predictable. Said Bradford:

…[C]ommunity of property was found to breed much confusion and discontent; and retard much employment which would have been to the general benefit…

For the young men who were most able and fit for service objected to being forced to spend their time and strength in working for other men’s wives and children, without any recompense...

“The strong man or the resourceful man had no more share of food, clothes, etc., than the weak man who was not able to do a quarter the other could. This was thought injustice.

The aged and graver men, who were ranked and equalized in labor, food, clothes, etc., with the humbler and younger ones, thought it some indignity and disrespect to them.

As for men’s wives who were obliged to do service for other men, such as cooking, washing their clothes, etc., they considered it a kind of slavery, and many husbands would not brook it…

Hmmm. Except for the “confusion, discontent, injustice, indignity, disrespect, (and slavery” that communism produced, it was paradise on earth.

Bradford hastened to explain that if you were looking for the “right people” to implement communism, these were the right people:

If all were to share alike, and all were to do alike, then all were on an equality throughout, and one was as good as another; and so, if it did not actually abolish those very relations which God himself has set among men, it did at least greatly diminish the mutual respect that is so important should be preserved amongst them.

Let none argue that this is due to human failing, rather than to this communistic plan of life in itself…”

So, if the “communistic plan of life” was an abysmal failure, what would replace it? Bradford explained that the Pilgrims discovered that capitalism was the answer.

God in His wisdom saw that another plan of life was fitter for them…

So they began to consider how to raise more corn, and obtain a better crop than they had done, so that they might not continue to endure the misery of want…

At length after much debate, the Governor, with the advice of the chief among them, allowed each man to plant corn for his own household

So every family was assigned a parcel of land, according to the proportion of their number…

This was very successful. It made all hands very industrious, so that much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been by any means the Governor or any other could devise, and saved him a great deal of trouble, and gave far better satisfaction.

The women now went willing into the field, and took their little ones with them to plant corn, while before they would allege weakness and inability, and to have compelled them would have been thought great tyranny and oppression.”

The “communistic plan of life” inevitably requires a more and more powerful state to enforce it, since it runs counter to the very grain of our God-given humanity. Soon, an all-powerful state replaces an all-powerful God as the object of a society’s worship and veneration, and the horrors of a totalitarian state unleavened by the purity of the gospel soon manifest themselves.

We have just passed the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution that brought Communists to power in Russia. Similar forms of oppressive, godless states sprang up in China, Vietnam, and in North Korea where a little tinpot dictator threatens the peace and stability of the entire world. Even in Germany, Hitler replaced pictures of Jesus with pictures of himself and drew his power from the occult rather than from Christ.

The human cost has been enormous. There is one thing that all godless, totalitarian states share in common, and that is dead bodies. Historians estimate that over 100 million lives have been sacrificed over the last century to the idolatrous god of communism.

So on this Thanksgiving, let’s include a word of gratitude for our Pilgrim forefathers, who saw “beyond the years…alabaster cites gleam(ing), undimmed by human tears.”

And let’s join in prayer on this Thanksgiving Day that God will once against shed his grace on us, and crown our good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

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What the Roy Moore campaign reveals about the character of the GOP

Bryan Fischer

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Reams of ink and gigabytes of pixels have been spilled by folks wringing their hands over the Roy Moore election in Alabama and what it reveals about the lack of character in the Republican Party. These pundits furrow their brows and droop their eyelids over this sad state of affairs, that the family values party would allow the presence of an accused “child molester” like Moore on its ticket.

Well, they are right that this abysmal election season has revealed an appalling lack of character in the Republican Party. But it’s in a way that is just about polar opposite of what critics are claiming. The moral weaknesses that have been exposed are not in Roy Moore but in the Republicans who are running their swords through Moore like Brutus and his buddies over the fallen body of Caesar.

Their rush to sit in judgment on Moore is immensely disturbing. Before all the facts were in, indeed, before any of the facts were in, Moore was accused, tried, convicted, sentenced, and punished with mind-numbing speed. Republicans, without a single shred of evidence that ANY of the accusations against Moore were true, scrambled to get out in front of the mob calling for his head, preening self-righteously as they did so.

And so Moore was hung out to dry by a hit squad comprised of people on his own team who were supposed to have his back. When these accusations first surfaced, after lying dormant for 39 years and going utterly undetected through 5 different election campaigns, men of character would have said, at a minimum, “Yes, these are disturbing allegations, which is all the more reason to slow down and be sure we have all the facts before we come to any conclusions. Let’s all take the time first to examine the credibility of the accusations and the accusers. In America, everybody is entitled to the presumption of innocence until actual evidence convinces us otherwise. In America, everyone is entitled to the presumption of innocence in the court of public opinion as well as in a court of law. In fact, it’s even more important in the court of public opinion, since lobbying rhetorical grenades at a man’s character is virtually risk-free these days because of toothless laws on libel and slander. So let’s everybody take a deep breath and examine the evidence before drawing any conclusions.”

But alas, there was no Republican leader anywhere who uttered these words of reason and common sense. Instead, all we heard were the thundering hooves of a disgraceful stampede intent on trampling the unblemished reputation of a man who, over the course of his entire public life, has stood without wavering for principle, the word of God, natural marriage, and the Constitution at considerable cost to himself.

Republicans who had endorsed Moore raced to the nearest microphone to un-endorse. Sen. McConnell, to his everlasting shame, led the assassination squad. Susan Collins threatened to “overturn the will of the people” if Alabamians didn’t come to the correct pre-approved decision at the ballot box. It’s as if the GOP was saying, “If you want a senator, we’ll give him to you. Why? Because you’re too dumb and hickish to pick one yourself.” The contempt and condescension is both obvious and odious.

It made no difference to the madding crowd that only two of Moore’s accusers even charged him with sexual misconduct, and that their stories immediately began to fall completely apart upon closer examination. Beverly Nelson Young of yearbook fame admitted to forgery on national TV, and court records obliterated Leigh Corfman’s story. But Mitch’s mind was made up, and he didn’t want anyone confusing him with, you know, actual facts.

In all of this, the swamp dwellers in the Republican Party have covered themselves with disgrace and revealed themselves to be moral midgets with no sense of fairness, justice, loyalty, courage, or reason. Yes, the Moore election has revealed something about the character of the Republican Party, and what it has revealed is about as ugly as it can get. Shame, shame, shame on them all.

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Is patriotism now partisan?

Caiden Cowger

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Regardless of political affiliation, patriotism has always been a bipartisan characteristic shared by both republicans and democrats. Liberals in the mainstream media are defending Colin Kaepernick, along with many other members of the National Football League, after players refused to stand for the national anthem.

President Donald Trump called-out the NFL for condoning displays of anti-Americanism from their players.

“If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend!” President Trump wrote on Twitter. On Friday, while at a rally in Alabama, the President expressed, “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that [SOB] off the field right now. Out. He’s fired. He’s fired!’”

Following the President’s remarks, rather than expressing remorse, the NFL slammed Trump and defended all players who disrespect Old Glory.

“The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and culture. There is no better example than the amazing response from our clubs and players to the terrible natural disasters we’ve experienced over the last month,” expressed NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. “Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.”

The national anthem is supposed to be a symbolic event of bipartisan unification. How can you claim to be contributing to a sense of unity in our country and culture, when you are condoning players engaging in a divisive act under the National Football League brand?

Goodell has the audacity to attack the President for having “an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL,” but defends his players unfortunate lack of respect for the United States of America. It is apparent that the NFL commissioner is an egotistical, hypocritical dunderhead. Respect for America is much more important than respect for a sport. Honorable men and women have fought and died to preserve this nation, and actively do so still to this day. Do they not deserve respect, Mr. Goodell?

Of course, liberal democrats have taken this as an opportunity to attack the President and unite with the NFL and their protests of the national anthem. They are chastising President Trump for expressing that players should be fired or suspended, claiming he is violating the right to freedom of speech.

When the co-founder of Firefox was forced to resign over his opinion in support of traditional marriage, liberals praised the “resignation disguised” firing. Why are they so quick to defend anti-American behavior from NFL players as being an act of freedom of speech? They are hypocrites.

These players are not expressing their anti-American vitriol on their own time and by their own means. They are using the NFL company and visual game distribution to promote their political agenda, while they are on the clock as active employees. They are pushing an anti-American message while they are on-duty at their workplace. They are using the NFL brand to promote their propaganda, and it is damaging the league’s reputation. The team owners of the NFL have every right to fire them.

When you are wearing the uniform of your employer, you are serving as an on-duty representative. When NFL players take a knee, refusing to honor the flag and this country, they are representing the position of the National Football League. These players have the constitutional right to disrespect our flag, but team owners also have the constitutional right to fire the players for misrepresenting their brand.

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