Thursday, May 26, 2011

Why Supprt Israel

In the midst of the Arab Spring last Thursday, President Obama reversed decades of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East by taking the Palestinian side against Israel. Among other things, Obama called for a return to Israel's pre-1967 borders, which would leave the country eight miles wide and totally indefensible. This would jeopardize the very existence of Israel.

The next day, Obama got a dressing down by Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "It's not going to happen," Netanyahu said Friday. "Everybody knows it's not going to happen." Land for peace has been tried and doesn't work. Paul Greenberg called this, "the oldest established permanent mirage in the Middle East. . . the Israelis may have finally seen through this game."

By Sunday, Obama was back peddling fast, claiming his remarks were misrepresented. Perhaps polls showing that 67% of Americans disapproved changed his mind. Perhaps addressing the American Israel Public Affairs Committee did. Wisely, he reversed course. Obama stated,
"Even while we may sometimes disagree, as friends sometimes will, the bonds between the United States and Israel are unbreakable, and the commitment of the United States to the security of Israel is ironclad."
Those are the words he needed to say, and the words he needs to mean.

After 2,000 years, God kept His promise calling His chosen people back to their land. Ezekiel 34:12-13 says: "As a shepherd seeks out his flock on the day he is among the scattered sheep, so will I seek out my sheep and deliver them from all the places where they are scattered. . . . .And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from among the countries, and I will bring them to their own land. I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the inhabited places." That happened as the modern state of Israel was created in 1948.

The borders of Israel were expanded in 1967 after Syria, Egypt, and Jordan attacked without provocation. Since its inception, the state of Israel has been under almost continuous attack by rocket and suicide bomber. Hamas, in Gaza, and Hezbollah, in Lebanon, have both stated goals of driving Israel into the sea. Now Hamas has joined a unity government with Fatah, the party that controls the West Bank. Israel should trust them? They have vowed Israel's total destruction.

Repeatedly Israel has given land for peace. They gave back the Sinai and Gaza, but the terrorism didn't end. Greenberg stated,
"American policymakers still talk about the conflict between Israel and her neighbors as if it were a territorial dispute - just a matter of drawing lines on a map. . . [but] this has never been about the creation of another Arab state, but the elimination of a Jewish one."

Why should we continue to support Israel? There is a mutual friendship and shared Judeo-Christian heritage, but there are better reasons. We need to be on Israel's side because God is.

God gave them the land as a perpetual heritage. God made the original covenant with Abraham and repeated it often. The prophet Isaiah wrote to Israel in Isaiah 54:5,10,
"For your maker is your husband. . . . For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed."
Paul, in Romans 11:29. writes, "For the gifts and calling of God are irrevocable." God keeps His promises.

More importantly, God told Abraham in Genesis 12:3, "I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse those who curse you." Since they became a nation, we have been Israel's primary defender and protector. Could this be the reason that we have experienced unparalleled blessing and prosperity? With all the bad news in the world facing us, what more can we expect if we abandon our friend?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Don't Nibble Around the Edges of Abortion, End It!

A Public hearing was held on yet another bill that nibbles around the edges of the abortion debate. This bill is L.D. 1463, which would assign a degree of legal standing to unborn babies so that those who injure them could be charged with a crime. Many states already give unborn babies this legal standing. Maine is just now considering getting on board, and it would join other bills under consideration that would require informed consent.

The opponents, as usual, argue that this is yet another attempt to erode constitutionally protected abortion rights. Alysia Melnick of the Maine Civil Liberties Union stated, "This bill would clearly separate a woman from her fetus in the eyes of the law." Her argument is that to consider the baby as more than a blob of tissue attached to the mother would get people to thinking this blob of tissue with a beating heart and a unique genetic code was a person. If people began to think that way, they might get the idea that the person had a right to live.

Horrors! Thus they accuse the sponsors of the bill of wanting to erode abortion rights. Oh, no, they were told, implying that we would never do something as stupid as challenge a woman's right to choose. This bill's sponsor, Senator Debra Plowman, R-Hampden, assured them, "At no point is this intended to affect a woman's right to choose [abortion]." Apparently she doesn't want to be accused of that. But, why wouldn't we want to? Do you really believe, Senator Plowman, that our Constitution guarantees a woman's right to an abortion? I've read the Constitution a number of times, and I can't find it. It's not there!

What I do find in the Constitution is that the fourteenth Amendment reiterates the Fifth Amendment and the Declaration of Independence by saying, "No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law." Our Constitution guarantees the right to life, not the right of a woman to choose death for her baby. Now the right to privacy has trumped that right to life, and abortion is the law of the land. As a result, 50,000,000 precious babies have been denied the right to be born.

Why would we not want to affect a woman's right to choose abortion? Why are we such cowards to say so? Are we afraid they will ridicule us? Why should we give up the debate over Roe versus Wade? Why do we accept the argument that Roe versus Wade is established, settled law? As established, settled law, they claim, it has somehow become sacred and untouchable. Hogwash!

Unfortunately, that was the same argument that was used to preserve slavery. The Dred Scott Decision by the Supreme Court was established law, and it allowed property rights of slave owners to trump the rights of the slaves to be free. It should have been the moral imperative of every decent citizen to oppose that wrong headed decision. It should be the moral imperative of every decent citizen to fight for the right to life for unborn children. To not argue for a total end to abortion is cowardice.

Can you imagine William Wilberforce standing before parliament arguing, "No, sir, we do not want to end the slave trade. We understand that it is established law. We merely want to pass some bills to make sure the slave traders are informed and can make an intelligent choice about whether to traffic in human lives." How ridiculous! does anyone actually think that would work? No!

Wilberforce had to attack the trade itself as evil. Yes, it was evil to trade in human lives, and the practice needed to be ended. There wasn't room for compromise. Yes, abortion is evil in that it destroys innocent human life, and the practice needs to be ended. Yes, Roe verses Wade needs to be reversed. Let's say it.

Let's have the guts to say, "Yes, we will do everything we can to overturn Roe versus Wade because it is bad law and was made through faulty reasoning." Yes, because of the currently political situation, we can work toward partial measures that will limit it, but we will not rest until it is overturned.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Time to Shut Planned Parenthood's Cash Spigot

This Saturday, I plan to participate in the "Walk for Life" sponsored by First Step Pregnancy Center in Bangor. This is one of the many ways that they raise funds to help in their effort to save innocent, unborn babies from death. They are doing a good work, and they have to raise their own funds to do it. Planned Parenthood doesn't have to do that. They receive $300 million in subsidies from the Federal Government, plus additional funding from many state governments, to carry out their agenda of ending the life of unborn babies through abortion. Something is wrong with this picture. It's time Planned Parenthood's government funding spigot is shut.

Why shouldn't Planned Parenthood have to hold their own fundraising events? Maybe they could have their own walk too. They could call it the "Walk for Death." But why should all of us be forced through our tax dollars to fund an organization that practices what many of us consider a great evil? Actually, since our Federal Government is broke, why should we borrow to fund their efforts so they can continue to end the life of future taxpayers?

There are those who disagree with shutting off the spigot. Our President and the Democrats in the Senate have drawn a line in the sand. They and other Planned Parenthood allies always want to trot out the "good things" that Planned Parenthood does to justify continued funding. But the problem is, those things don't change the fact that Planned Parenthood is the nation's number one provider of abortion.

One of our children's newest favorite movies is "Tangled." There is one scene in the movie where the heroine is lured into a tavern with a benign sounding name but filled with an assortment of thugs, toughs, and criminals. Fearing for her life, she explains her dream to them. Touched by the beauty of it, they all begin telling their own dreams. Deep inside they are really wonderful people with admirable dreams. One wants to be a concert pianist. Another wants to be a mime. Still another collects miniatures. Ah, but alas, they really are all thugs, toughs, and criminals who make their living through crime. None of their dreams change that fact.

Everyone wants to be thought well of. that's human nature. Everyone will always present their best side - even Planned Parenthood. But it is kind of hard to hide reality. That's the situation with Planned Parenthood. For all of its "good intentions," they remain the nation's number one provider of abortion. As such, they do not deserve one cent of public support. Please do not use our tax dollars to fund them. Shut off the cash spigot.