where religion and politics meet

Everyone has a worldview. A worldview is what one believes about life: what is true, what is false, what is right, what is wrong, what are the rules, are there any rules, what is the meaning of life, what is important, what is not.

If a worldview includes a god/God, it is called a religion. If a bunch of people have the same religion, they give it a name.

Countries also have a worldview, a way of looking at life that directs government policies and laws and that contributes significantly to the culture. Ours used to be Christianity. Now it is secularism, which is practical atheism.

Some of us are trying to engage the government, the culture, and the people who live here to see life again from a Christian perspective and to show how secularism is both inadequate and just plain wrong.

A religion is not a culture, though it creates one. It is not what you prefer, like your taste in music or your favorite movie. It is what you believe to be true. Because it deals with things like God, much of its contents is not subject to the scientific method, but the reasons why one chooses to believe in God or a particular religion certainly demand serious investigation and critical thinking.

Every human being has the duty to search for and learn the truth about life. Education and science used to be valuable tools in this search, but science has chosen to answer the foundational questions without accepting the possibility of any supernatural causes, and education no longer considers the search to be necessary or worthwhile.

poligion: 1) the proper synthesis of religion and politics 2) the realization, belief, or position that politics and religion cannot be separated or compartmentalized, that a person’s religion invariably affects one’s political decisions and that political decisions invariably stem from one’s worldview, which is what a religion is.

If you are new to this site, I would encourage you to browse through the older articles. They deal with a lot of the more basic issues,

For now I want to focus my writing now articles specifically addressed to Christians. So most of my new posts will be on my other website listed below. I will continue to write and post short responses to newspaper columns and letters and even other articles as the inspiration hits me.

Visit my other websites theimportanceofhealing blogspot.com where I talk about healing and my book of the same name and LarrysBibleStudies.blogspot.com where I am posting all my other Bible studies. Follow this link to my videos on youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb-RztuRKdCEQzgbhp52dCw

If you want to contact me, email is best: lacraig1@sbcglobal.net

Thank you.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Remember the Trojan Horse

One of the earliest memories I have is sitting in a movie theater watching Helen of Troy, a movie about the Trojan War.  Basically the war was a ten year war between Greece (I think just one of their city states) and the city of Troy in what is now Turkey.  Finally, the Greeks built a large wooden horse (maybe 60 ft tall) and sailed away.  The Trojans thought it was a peace offering or something like that and brought it into the city.  In the middle of the night, Greek soldiers from inside the horse came out and were able to open the gates to the Greek army that had gathered outside.  The Greeks won the war that night.

What brought this movie to mind was a news segment from ABC recently about a refugee family that was settled in California.  It focused (as far as I watched) on two young girls as they started school in their new country.  Two sweet little girls in a strange new world.  It made you want to go over to Syria and bring them all over.

There are between 19 and 65 million refugees in the world today, depending on who’s counting.  What should the world do in response to this crisis?

The best way to answer that question might be to ask yourself this question: To what lengths would you go personally to meet this need?  How much would you give up in terms of freedom, security, wealth, or your children’s future?  How much change would you accept in this country?  How much financial sacrifice?  Are there any other countries in the world that you would like to move to or rather live in?  Because the country you know will not be the same as the one it will become, and you have to decide how much change you would be willing to accept.

Most of the refugees that our country is currently focused on bringing into our country are Muslims.  When you see a child suffering, who cares what religion they are.  You want to help.  So this year we brought in about 10,000 Muslims refugees.  Hllary Clinton wants to bring in 65,000 more, and President Obama addressed the United Nations urging all the countries of the world to take in as many of these refugees as possible. 

Some Muslim countries have set up refugee camps, but I know of no Muslim country that is actually trying to assimilate refugees into their society.  This burden seems to be given to all the non-Muslim countries. 

So at great expense, all these non-Muslim countries, from South America to Australia, and the United States and Canada, are trying to bring in refugees to relieve some of their misery. 

But then what.  In a generation or two, these Muslim people have now become a Muslim community, and they need a mosque.  Now they need to bring in an imam to lead and teach them.  And what do they teach them?

I have an Assyrian friend who is fluent in Arabic and has clients who have asked about mosques in the area.  So he attended at least one local one with them.  He told me they teach their people to stay separate from the Americans, especially the Christians.  Sharia law is the way of salvation for Muslims.  It shows them how to please God.

Islam is incompatible with Western Civilization.  Women wear hijabs and burkas to live according to Sharia.  But what they don’t tell you is that you should be wearing them to, even if you are not a Muslim.  Your short dresses and tight pants and shorts show what low morals you have. 

We are told that America is a land where everyone is free to live out their religion.  When our Founders wrote that, they were thinking about the various disputes between Baptists and Presbyterians, not Jews and Muslims.  We went to war with a number of Muslim nations soon after our nation’s founding, and the Muslims leaders showed our leaders from the Koran that it was their duty to attack our ships and enslave our sailors.  That’s what Muslims do. 

So, no, our Founders were not envisioning a country where all kinds of religions with very different standards of right and wrong and morality would try to coexist in some sort of utopia.  Western culture is decadent to Islam.  It just might take a generation of two before they feel free enough to tell us that.  They will need a few more mosques to teach their people their obligations to Allah.

All this is being clearly played out all over Europe right now.  There are probably thousands of videos on Youtube that show this clash of cultures.  And you don’t think it will happen here?



Why would anyone oppose illegal and Muslim immigration?

Neil Steinberg (Chicago Sun-Times  Sept. 21) thinks a lot of people are needlessly worried or bothered by illegal immigrants and Muslims.  After all, children from even the best families can go wrong, and people die every day from automobile accidents, and nobody talks about banning cars.    

He is sure that the only reason these people are so worried about illegal immigrants and Muslims must be because they hate immigrants.

I think there are a few other possible reasons.
As for illegal immigration, I would think a country has the responsibility to know who is coming into it.  Try to enter Mexico or Canada illegally and see how they respond.  You’ll either be in jail or back where you came from. 

I have a government textbook from 1949 which lists 11 criteria that immigrants had to meet before being accepted into our country, including their health.  Diseases that had long been essentially eradicated in our country are back, like tuberculosis and leprosy.
People were not allowed in if it was thought they would require government assistance.  Now the government gladly assists them whether they are legal or not.  And it borrows money to do that, as the federal government alone is $20 trillion in debt.

Years ago, we used to make all of our own stuff.  As the population grew, demand increased, and so did the jobs.  We had jobs for everyone, and they were good paying jobs.  You could stock shelves in a grocery store and support your family so your wife didn’t have to work.

Now we have about 90 million people of workforce age out of work, the lowest rate of labor participation since the late 70s.  And all these people are being supported by the rest of us who are working.

As for Muslims, the key to understanding the issue is to compare life in the United States before and after 9/11 and seeing how our country has changed solely because we are afraid a Muslim will commit an act of terror. 

The FBI has over 1,000 open terror investigations right now.  I won’t say that none of these involve Protestants, Catholics, or Jews, but I would bet at least 1,000 of them involve Muslims.

We have over a million people on a terror watch list.  Again, I won’t say there are no Protestants, Catholics, or Jews on that list, but I would bet at least a million of them are Muslims.  It is costing us billions of dollars a year trying to keep track of all of them.

We have the Department of Homeland Security, including the TSA, that was created solely as a result of 9/11.  We are closing in on almost a trillion dollars that have been spent on this department since 9/11.   

Forever and ever we now must spend hours in line at airports being screened for bombs.  They are only afraid of a Muslim bringing a bomb onto the plane.  That is the only reason we started doing this.
Now this has been expanded to baseball and football games.  

Forever and ever we must endure screenings and are forbidden from bringing drinks into the stadium, because we are afraid a Muslim will bring a bomb or other weapon inside.  The Chicago White Sox have a stadium on the south side of Chicago, which has possibly the highest gun violence rate in the country.  But they were never worried about gun violence at a ball game before now.  Why?  Solely because of the threat of a Muslim committing an act of mass violence.

Why are we doing all this?  The Constitution says that government, our government, exists to “form a more perfect union, . . . insure domestic tranquility, and promote the general welfare . . .”  And it is supposed to do all this for the people of the United States. 


It seems to me that our government is expecting our people to give up their money, freedom, and security to put the needs of the people of other countries before the needs of its own.  That sounds noble and compassionate, but it doesn’t have that right without the consent of the people it governs.  As controversial as these issues are, I would say that the government is acting without the consent of the people. 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

OK, So I’ve Read the Constitution


Maybe you remember the man at the Democratic National Convention who pulled a copy of the Constitution out of his pocket, waved it around, and then addressed Donald Trump, challenging him if he had ever read the Constitution.

Well, I have, and I would like to share with you some of my thoughts about it.

I think the Preamble, or the beginning, of the Constitution is the most important part, because it tells us what kind of government it was that we fought the War of Independence to get, the purpose of this government, or you could say, the goals for this nation that our government is supposed to work toward.

And this is what it says:
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Looking at it a little more closely, we see first of all that it is the people who establish the government.  The government exists for the people and not the people for the government.  Instead of the government telling us what to do, we tell the government what we want it to do.

The first goal mentioned is to form a more perfect union.  This probably originally applied to the states being united, but still the idea is that the country is to be united.  Everything I see in politics today is division, dividing up the country into all kinds of different people with competing interests and needs, and we have to take from one group to give it to another. 

Whoever says that diversity is our strength should not work in government, because diversity does not unite people.  People unite with people they have things in common with.  Our government is showing no interest in seeing that people have things in common.  They have no common vision of what we should unite around, but they encourage people to be as different as possible.  The people they seek to bring into our country are as different as possible from those who are already here.

Establishing justice would mean that the government seeks to ensure that the people have the freedoms to live out those rights spelled out for us in the Bill of Rights.  And these listed rights were not intended to be all-inclusive, and it was understood that these rights came from God and not from the government.

Our government is now finding limitations to these rights, because a) it no longer trusts the people to live freely, because it has removed the moral framework that provided the personal self-control that is necessary for people to really live free lives, and b) the government has created new rights that directly conflict with the understood rights and moral code that have always existed in our country.  

Insuring domestic tranquility means that the government really wants the people to live in peace and safety.  I see a government that is constantly forcing things on the people and telling them to like it.  Immigration, for example, is one of the most divisive issues in our country today, yet the government insists on forcing things on our people which most people don’t like, if they ever cared to ask.

Defending our country is not just protecting the country from attacks from foreign countries.  The goal of war is to change the government to something else than from what it was.  If this can be done without killing people, so much the better. 

I see people who don’t care about what this country was intended to be.  They want to make us into something different, and they are just as much of an enemy to our country as a hostile foreign power.  No, they are not killing people, but they are taking our country away from us nonetheless.

Promoting the general welfare means that the government should pursue policies that benefit everybody.  That is hardly the case anymore.  The guiding principle today is to take from those who have and give it to those who don’t.  There are more people who don’t have so they become a larger voting block than those who do.  But helping people, or let’s just say giving things to people, at the expense of other people is not promoting the general welfare, but the welfare of the people chosen by the government.  That is unconstitutional.

And, lastly, to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.  This means that we shouldn’t do things now for the benefit of people if it diminishes the blessings to the people who will come after us.  We are now $20 trillion in debt.  This means that we are doing this for people at the expense of those who will come after us.  This is robbing our children to buy off people today.  This is wrong.  You don’t run a country on borrowed money, especially when there is no intention of paying it back.


So I read the Constitution.  I am wondering now what the point was that this man at the convention was trying to make.  What exactly did Donald Trump not understand? 

affordable housing is subsidized housing.

An organization wants to build some affordable housing in my town.  I am not happy with this.  I wrote a letter to the person who is head of this organization.  I enclose the letter below.  This letter is important, because the issues go beyond one building in one town.

Dear Mr. :

I am a long-time resident of  *****, and I would like to express my firm, deep, and complete opposition to this plan. 

There are basically three problems I have with this project.

1)         I immediately respond negatively when people use euphemisms or politically correct terms to try to hide the reality of an issue.  Affordable housing means subsidized housing, which means that other people are paying for this. 

You accept Section 8 housing vouchers, which means that our government, which has no idea how to manage money, is using other people’s money, including mine, in ways that most people would probably oppose if they knew how they were spending it.  Our country is almost $20 trillion in debt with no intention of cutting back. 

The Chicago Sun-Times ran a series of articles on these housing subsidies, and it revealed that these vouchers can run as high as several thousand dollars a month.  I’m sorry.   I have great sympathy for poor people, but our government has created a lot of these problems and spends our money foolishly trying to make the best of what it screwed up. 

Spending money in this way only masks the deep seated problems and prevents anyone from trying to solve those.  I am taxed-up and don’t want to pay a penny more in taxes, regardless of how worthy the cause appears to be.  As long as our government continues spending money it doesn’t have trying to solve everybody’s problems, it will only keep wanting more of my money.  Enough.

2)         We moved to ***** from Chicago to get away from its congestion and high crime.  Our political and community leaders keep trying to bring Chicago to us.  They think that those who come here will benefit from a new environment, but they forget basic science.  If you mix two compounds or liquids together, both are changed.  If one is more toxic, it becomes less toxic.  If one is more innocuous, it become less so, absorbing the other’s toxins. 

So it works both ways.  Those who move here from, say, crime ridden areas still have contacts and friends who will continue to maintain relationships.  So crime tends to follow.

***** is primarily single family homes.  People invest more in their homes than in rental units, especially when they don’t have to pay full value for them and are living above their means in the first place.  If they can’t afford to pay their rents, how can they afford to keep their places up?

3)         I reject the social engineering ideas that a lot of people are pushing in our society today.  I could talk long and hard about all that is involved here, but basically it involves either government or people who want to in some way bring change to the lives of people who are neither asking or looking for it, and who will contend they would rather not have it in the first place.  And when it happens, many of them simply move somewhere else. 

So a project like this is not simply what is done for certain needy people, but what it does for those who are already here.  Life in ****** is expensive.  We have thought many times about moving because of that, but we have kids who live in the area.  If these people can’t afford their rents, then they sure can’t afford their taxes.  Which other people, like myself, will have to make up.  And what else won’t they be able to afford that other people will end up paying for?  School fees?  Utility bills? 

I am not against compassion and helping people.   But compassion and charity involve people who voluntarily give their rime and resources to someone else.  But government merely takes money from some people and gives it to another, and that is too easily abused and wasted. 

I want to be kind, but I wish your organization would just go away.

Thank you.


What is the left, and what are they trying to do to our country?

[Somebody wrote the following article about the left, and I was asked what I thought about it.  My comments follow the article.  These issues are important for understanding what is going on in our country right now.]

"Republicans think that the battle with the left is over issues like these:
Welfare
Taxes
Debt
Personal Responsibility
Crime
Morals
Abortion
Wages
Pork Barrel Spending
War & Peace
Civil Rights
The environment
Corruption
But these are issues debated WITHIN a constiutional system; this is the game on the surface. The left is playing on a different level. They are not debating policy within the system, they are trying to ALTER the system itself.
The REAL game is a list of issues about the system itself. This second list shows a much deeper level of understanding of the left and it’s tactics; a reality that many on the center right won’t name or acknowledge. The right mocks the left because they can’t call Islamic Terrorism, Islamic Terrorism, and then we turn around and won’t use the correct words to label leftism. 
These issues are not being debated in mainstream media, but they are what leftist activists debate and study among themselves. How many of these terms are elected republicans familiar with? If I asked republican officials to explain these terms, what they mean to the left, how they affect their strategy and tactics, and how they relate to one another, would they know the answers?
Cultural Marxism, Marcuse and the Frankfurt School
Hegemony (patriarchy, white privilege, cisgender)
Critical Theory
Critical Race Theory
Liberation from Oppression
Liberation Theology
Structural Functionalism - systems of oppression
Social Construct
Alienation
Exploitation
Political Correctness
MultiCulturalism
Social Justice (food, environmental, etc.)
Antonio Gramsci
Social Constructs
Agency
Agenda 21/Sustainability
Moral Relativism
Microaggressions
Hegel & the Dialectic/dialectic materialism
Scientific Socialism
Vanguardism
Long March thru the Institutions
For example, Gay marriage appears to be an issue of civil rights, an end in and of itself. But actually, to the hard left, it's a an issue of Critical Theory and Social Justice. Not an end, but a plan of attack against the foundations of the Republic. Marxist tactics are filled with jargon, front groups, and front issues.
I don't blame Trump for not knowing this. I think dozens of friends of mine on facebook could answer a quiz on the above topics better than EVERY elected republican in congress. But whereas they all cave to it, Trump instinctively fights back. Not intellectually, but on a gut level that he's on the right side."
----Jeffrey Varasano
(from Flavia Eckholm)

I see two dynamics at work here.  I have often thought that, after looking how things have progressed (regressed) over the generations, it looked like there were a group of people who sat in a room and planned out a hundred-year plan to take over Western Civilization.  (Islam did that also by the way, but that is separate from this.).
Through the first half of the twentieth century, there was a strong fear and awareness in our country of communist infiltration into our government.  After Joseph McCarthy,
Joseph Raymond "Joe" McCarthy (November 14, 1908 – May 2, 1957) was an American politician who served as a U.S. Senator from the state of Wisconsin from 1947 until his death in 1957. Beginning in 1950, McCarthy became the most visible public face of a period in which Cold War tensions fueled fears of widespread Communist subversion.[1] He was noted for making claims that there were large numbers of Communists and Soviet spies and sympathizers inside the United States federal government and elsewhere. Ultimately, the controversy he generated led him to be censured by the United States Senate.
The term "McCarthyism", coined in 1950 in reference to McCarthy's practices, was soon applied to similar anti-communist activities. Today, the term is used by critics of McCarthy in reference to what they consider demagogic, reckless, and unsubstantiated accusations, as well as public attacks on the character or patriotism of political opponents.[2]
the whole idea of communist subversion in our country just seemed to disappear.  Even to talk of communist spies and of communist plots to take over were dismissed as crazy conspiracy theories.  Apparently they are not.  Most of these terms are Marxist, but nobody thinks of Marxism anymore as an existential threat to our country.
The other dynamic I don’t know if it is independent of this or a result of this.  The whole drive to get religion, specifically Christianity, out of the public square and establishing the idea that our country was founded to be a secular nation. 
Once secularism is established as the ruling worldview, the need arises to create a new value system, which essentially is made up as we go along.  But the determining values are equality, fairness, diversity, tolerance, multiculturalism, and relativism.  This is directly related to the rejection of Christianity as providing the moral framework for our country. 
I have often wondered how secularism was able to take hold.  The Supreme Court’s decisions played a big part, starting in 1947 when it ruled that government cannot aid or favor any religion.
In terms of strategy, someone has said that he who frames the argument wins the argument.  As soon as gay marriage was framed as one of equal rights, the outcome was assured. 
The left is quick to use such terms as homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, sexist, racist, discrimination, inequality, nativist, protectionist, and separation of church and state.  All these terms are meant to simply end the discussion.  There is nothing that you can say against any of these.  Once these words are used, it is understood there is nothing more to be said.
This is where Christians and conservatives are failing.  They don’t know how to respond to these either with a quick rejoinder or some response that gets to the heart of the issue and shows the issue in a different light that the public can quickly see as making sense.
Now Marxism is atheistic as well as secularism.  Did one spawn the other, or did they both begin and grow independently?  In the first case, we can read and learn of their overall strategy, but still nobody sees them as the problem. 
The whole idea of secularism is the root issue that Christians need to challenge.  It’s a debate rooted in history, but we then need to show how Christianity was responsible for the rise of Western Civilization and the establishment and flourishing of our country.  Secularism inevitably leads to socialism, maybe communism, but ultimately the demise of a nation.  It bankrupts it financially and morally.  Christians need to insist that the country needs their work and influence to prosper again, and Christians need to challenge the Supreme Court’s rulings and the common (mis)understanding of the separation of church and state.  Without this, there is little we can do to reverse the course of our nation.



Monday, September 12, 2016

Immigration and Product Recalls

Politicians often use such expressions as: That’s not who we are,” or “Americans have always done such and such” to make a case why what they are doing is the right thing to do.

Allow me to do the same.

America is a nation that will recall millions of pounds of ground beef because there is a chance some of it might be infected with e coli bacteria.  

America is a nation that will recall millions of automobiles because the air bags may go off unexpectedly. 

America is a nation that will tell us not to use a certain Samsung cell phone because the battery may catch fire.

Yet at the same time our government will bring millions of Muslims into our country, knowing that no matter how hard they try to prevent it, there will be terror attacks.  And they will tell us to like it and call us bad people if we don’t.  

Forever and ever we will now endure long lines at the airports because they are afraid a Muslim will bring a bomb onto a plane. 

Forever and ever we will not be able to bring water or drinks into a baseball or football game for the same reason.

We spend over $60 billion a year on the Department of Homeland Security, a department that we created specifically to protect us from Muslim terrorism.

The FBI is currently working on over 1,000 open terror investigations, almost all of them involving Muslims.

Yet the government keeps bringing more and more Muslims into our country and accuses us of being very bad people if we object. 

I think our government has an agenda that is not seeking the welfare of the American people.


Please see the Constitution, particularly the beginning where it tells us what kind of government we fought a war so that we could get it.