Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Learning from the Mall

In an article I wrote for Chuck Colson in 2011, titled 'What the Church Can Learn from the Mall', I argued that the marketing industry behind the mall has understood one basic fact of human nature: we tend to follow after those images of the good life that have first captivated our hearts. The things we love tend to be cultivated through the embodied practices that educate our desire and, in so doing, shape our understanding of the good life. This understanding often happens on a level far deeper than the cognitive mind is even aware.

I am indebted to James K.A. Smith for helping me to understand this. He has pointed out that “the mall…[grabs] hold of our gut (kardia) by means of our body and its senses - in stories and images, sights and sounds, and commercial versions of ‘smells and bells’...” When our senses are constantly immersed in the stimuli of the consumerist gospel, our heart unconsciously begins to associate the symbols and implicit messages of the mall with the good life.
 
What can the church learn from this? According to Smith, Christian worship should also seek aim at the heart by training the body. In chapter 5 of Desiring the Kingdom, Smith has a fascinating discussion of the elements of traditional Christian worship – elements which, ironically, many “seeker-sensitive” churches have thrown out in their quest for relevance – to show how these can help to train our heart to desire the Biblical visions of the good life.

It is important for the church to train our minds, but if Smith is correct it is even more important for the church to grab our hearts.

To read more about this, visit my article 'What the Church Can Learn from the Mall.'

Further Reading on this Topic






 

Natural Rights vs. Legal Rights

John Locke
Technically, a natural right is something we are entitled to by God independent of the particular circumstances in which we find ourselves.

In his Two Treatises on Civil Government, Locke outlined the three primary natural rights from which the entire political order flowed. Wikipedia’s helpful article on natural rights summarizes these as follows:

  • Life: everyone is entitled to live once they are created.
  • Liberty: everyone is entitled to do anything they want to so long as it doesn't conflict with the first right.
  • Property: everyone is entitled to own all they create or gain through gift or trade so long as it doesn't conflict with the first two rights.

These natural rights should be familiar to us, because when Jefferson penned the Declaration, he drew on these Locke’s basic nomenclature but change Property to Happiness:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Unalienable rights, being pre-legal, form a higher authority than the laws of the land. That is why the concept of natural rights became a mechanism during the Enlightenment to challenge the authority of kings and to promote modern republican theories of social contract.

But do natural rights even exist? I don't think so.

The problem with natural rights is that they hinge on certain theories of self-ownership that we are hard pressed to find in scripture. If natural rights really do exist, then God would be required to adhere to them, and yet God restricts our life, liberty and property all the time. From a scriptural point of view, it seems that we don't have the right to anything, at least not in an a priori sense.

Even those who espouse natural rights allow that there are circumstances in which the state has the duty to restrict someone’s liberty (as in the case of a convicted criminal) or even take away a person’s life (as in the case of a convicted murderer). What does this establish other than that whatever we may wish to call a ‘natural right’ is really contingent on a host of other factors and circumstances? This, incidentally, is exactly what Burke argues in his Reflections on the Revolution in France, which I discuss in Saints and Scoundrels.

Philosophical arguments to establish the existence of natural rights are often circular, hinging on the prior assumption such rights are “self-evident.” At other times, defenders of natural rights commit the blatant non sequitur of inferring natural rights from merely pragmatic human-law arguments.

Finally, as my friend Brad Littlejohn has pointed out in his blog post ‘Possessed by Christ’ that “It is often forgotten, perhaps, that most concepts of private property rights as natural rights (as opposed to being a political right, a ‘social construct’) depend on a prior commitment to the notion of self-ownership." Does the Bible teach a doctrine of self-ownership? Somehow, I don't think the man who wrote 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 would think so.

Now make no mistake. There are certainly obligations and ethics that are pre-legal, and for this reason I have no problem affirming “natural law.” God created a moral universe, and it is beyond the authority of government to tamper with what God has declared to be right and wrong. Every legal system in the world has a duty to recognize these a priori realities. But natural rights are not among them.


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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gender Equality Threatens to Undermine British Monarchy

I lived in England for ten years, my wife Esther is English, and our children all have dual citizenship, so you can imagine that the British monarchy is pretty important to us. The monarchy remains important to us even after we moved to America in 2007.

I first came to understand the importance of the monarchy shortly after I moved to England to marry Esther, and Princess Diana was the victim of a fatal car accident. As I watched my wife and all her family grieve, I confess that inwardly I sometimes wondered what all the fuss was about. Sure, it was sad, but people die all the time. You see, I was still thinking like an American and had no idea how deep the love of the British people for their royal family ran.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Saints and Scoundrels Lecture Series in Spokane


Beginning Wednesday February 20th, and running for five weeks over Lent (according to the Western Calender), I will be lecturing on some of the good guys and bad guys of history which feature in my book Saints and Scoundrels. Christ the King Anglican Church in Spokane WA is sponsoring this event, which is completely free. Direction to the church can be found here. The lectures will include the following:

  • 'Alfred the Great and the Beginning of Britain'
  • 'Bad King John and Medieval Britain'
  • 'Richard Baxter: Making the Resurrection Practical'
  • 'Rousseau and the French Revolution'
  • 'Dorothy Sayers Against the Gnostics'
The soup is served at 6:30 and the lecture begins at 7:00.

To learn more about this event and encourage others to come, visit the Facebook page here.  To download a podcast interview about Saints and Scoundrels, click here.




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North Korea Alert

Kim Jong-un, the current leader of North Korea, comes from a long line of  brutal rulers.

As North Korea has recently been in the headlines because of their brazen and shameless threats to the United States and because of the cannibalism to which their starving citizens are stooping, I want to remind my readers about some articles I wrote for Christian Voice about North Korea in general and the persecution of North Korean Christians in particular. I assembled these resources after speaking first-hand with those who had been involved helping North Koreans to escape, including interviews with military personnel involved in counter-espionage.

To download the collection of resources, click on the following link: 

North Korea Resources


I assembled these resources after speaking first-hand with those who had been involved helping North Koreans to escape.

Also, see the news story published yesterday about photographs of North Korea's concentration camps that were generated using Google Earth. The report tells how "As many as 250,000 political prisoners and their families toil on starvation rations in the mostly remote mountain camps", but what it does not mention is that many of these families are Christians who have been taken to these starvation camps as a punishment for believing in Jesus.

To get an idea of what goes on in these camps, read my book review of Kang Chol-Hwan’s chilling exposé of the system after his own imprisonment of ten years. The treatments that Christians and other political prisoners are subjected to at these camps include such things as:
  • making prisoners watch other prisoners being executed and then forcing them to throw stones at the corpses working prisoners to death through hard labour
  • forcing prisoners to live in permanent situations of deliberately contrived semi-starvation
  • placing prisoners in a 1.5-meter-square (16.5-feet-square) punishment cell for a week or more, where they are unable to sit up or lie down
  • forcing prisoners to remain for long periods in the cold
  • raping women with tools until they are dead
  • routine infanticide and forced abortions, including stamping on the necks of babies until they die
  • water torture
  • motionless-kneeling for long periods (detainees who move while they are supposed to be kneeling motionless are handcuffed from the upper bars of their cells with their feet suspended off the floor)
  • beating prisoners to death
  • sleep deprivation
  • cutting off women’s breasts
  • forcing detainees to beat each other
  • breaking fingers

At this point, there isn't much we can do other than pray for God to bring a miracle of deliverance to this country, which is a relic of the Cold War era. The other thing we can do is to educate ourselves. I am constantly meeting Christians who have no idea that their fellow brothers and sisters are suffering in Nazi-style concentration camps because the media, fixated on the Middle East, all but completely ignores the problem.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Sexual Revolution and Juvenile Brain Changes

In his book The Sexual Revolution, Wilhelm Reich (1897–1957), an early pioneer of the sex-education movement, described the means for achieving a society that would not put any obstacles in the path of sexual gratification. 

For all his moral anarchism, Reich was perceptive. He realized that in order to arrive at the sexual utopia he advocated, people would first have to learn to dispense with their natural shyness and embarrassment concerning sexual matters. They would have to lose their reluctance to expose erotically important parts of their bodies. Reich attempted to facilitate this by conducting psychotherapy sessions in which he would require his clients to, well, remove all their clothes.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Government Neutrality and Baseball

In the article ,'All States in Europe are Moving Toward Secularism', we read about David Pollock's speech praising the progress of secularism in Europe. (David Pollock is President of the European Humanist Federation)

In Pollock's speech, which can be read in its entirety here, he says that a secular state is a state that is “neutral as between different religions and beliefs…not taking sides for or against religion or atheism, for or against one belief or another.” Secularism as such “is the best guarantor we have of freedom of religion or belief.”

The logical problem is that it is incoherent to speak of government being neutral towards religion and non-religion, or towards belief and non-belief. Frederick Mark Gedicks explained why this was in an article for the William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal, titled, ‘Religions, Fragmentations, and Doctrinal Limits.’ In the article Mr Gedicks explored the logical impossibility in the very concept of a government adopting a neutral posture towards religion and non-religion. While he was writing in the context of American government, his observations are equally pertinent to the question of secularism in Europe:

Thursday, January 24, 2013

America's Deceit Available Now on Kindle

My friend and former Hollywood actor John Gaetano has recently released a new edition of his book America's Deceit, available on Kindle. 

America’s Deceit is an epic novel about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. This fictional story is based upon the true account of our government’s decades long cover-up. Seen from the fictional characters’ point of view, you will learn how our government shielded their part in the murder of our thirty-fifth President, and how they continue to hide its secrets behind the cloak of national security. Although there are plenty of nonfiction books depicting the many conspiracy theories of the Kennedy assassination, what John Gaetano has done is to expose these suppositions and test them through a fictional investigation of the truth. 

For any concerned citizen who seeks the detailed truth behind the tragic event of November 1963 America’s Deceit is not only a stunning work of in-depth research, it’s a page-turner story that you will be unable to put down.

New Creation and Christian Mission

We say a lady is “a new woman” when
she has had her hair made over and
put on a new dress.
If God is planning to create a new heavens and a new earth, then what’s the point of laboring for new creation now? After all, I wouldn’t give my Ford an oil change today if I’m planning to take it to the junk yard tomorrow and buy a Dodge? So what’s the point of planting trees or working to clean up pollution, not to mention our cultural endeavors, if God is just going to start over?

The problem with this question is that it assumes the work we do in the present age is not going to last for eternity. But Saint Paul describes our work as enduring (1 Corinthians 3:14) and he says it is “not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15.58) Moreover, we know from elsewhere in Scripture that there is an organic continuity between what happens in this age, on the one hand, and the age to come, on the other. Thus, the relationship between the present age and the age to come is not like the relationship between a Ford and a Dodge; it’s more like an old beaten up Ford compared to the same car after it’s been renovated and renewed.

Because of this, we shouldn’t think of the new heavens and the new earth as being completely new. C.S. Lewis gets it right in The Last Battle when he describes the heavenly Narnia being built on the template of the original Narnia. The “new earth” described in Revelation 21 will be new only in the sense that we say a lady is “a new woman” when she has had her hair made over and put on a new dress.

To read more about this, visit my Colson Center article, 'Building For God's Kingdom' and 'Dispensationalism and the problem of Multi-generational parenting.'


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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Psychology of Totalitarianism

Classical Greece and Rome had a tradition of appointing a dictator during times of national emergency. After the crisis finished, the dictator would step down so that government could return to normal, usually to some form republic or oligarchy. Following this tradition, modern leaders frequently appeal to times of real or alleged 'crisis' to persuade the populace to entrust them with powers that would normally be distributed.

However, there is a crucial difference. During times of national crisis the ancients would be ruled by a person, whereas we are ruled by laws rather than people. The consequence of this is that the augmented power required by a crisis has to first be legitimized by legislation. And here's the rub: the legislation does not step down after the crisis is over like the classical dictator did. In this way, an entire slough of totalitarian legislation can be built up over the years, like barnacles clinging to a ship, gradually changing the face of society from one of freedom to one of enslavement.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Amy Carmichael

Few would have expected David and Catherine Carmichael’s eldest daughter, Amy, to grow up to become one of the world’s most famous missionaries. Born in 1867 in the small village of Millisle, Northern Ireland, there was nothing particularly unusual about this girl, who was known for her wilfulness, tomboyish and propensity to get into mischievous pranks. Little did the Carmichael parents realize that their daughter would be God’s tool for rescuing hundreds of children from a life worse than death in the darkness of the Indian jungles.
 
Though Amy’s father died when she was five, the gap was amply filled by the widower Robert Wilson. Cofounder of the Keswick Convention, Wilson was a catalyst for the holiness movement in England and a support for many missionaries around the globe.
 
When she was in her young twenties, Wilson asked to be allowed to adopt Amy, for whom he felt a special fondness after the loss of his only daughter. Thus it was that Amy moved in with Mr. Wilson and his sons to work as his secretary. The job put Amy in direct contact with many of the missionaries around the world, including Hudson Taylor, Theodore Monod and F.B. Meyer. This was no doubt instrumental in pressing upon Amy the call to mission work.
 
An Unlikely Missionary
 
Amy was an unlikely candidate for the life of a missionary. She suffered from neuralgia, a disease that stimulates the nerves to feel pain and forced Amy to spend entire weeks in bed. Moreover, she felt reluctant to leave Robert Wilson, as the two of them had grown extremely attached to each other. Yet the call of Jesus upon her would not go away. Around this time she wrote to her mother that

“Everything, everything seemed to be saying ‘Go’, through all sounds the cry seemed to rise, ’Come over and help us.’ Every bit of pleasure of work which has come to me, has had underlying it the thought of those people who have never, never heard of Jesus; before my eyes clearer than any lovely view has been the constant picture of those millions who have no chance, and never had one, of hearing of the love which makes our lives so bright.”

Amy initially had no idea where she wanted to go, only that she needed to go somewhere. Rejected by the China Inland Mission because of her frailty, she was eventually able to go to Japan as a Keswick missionary with the Church Missionary Society. In the providence of God, however, Amy was only able to stay in Japan for fifteen months because of ill health. God had other plans for this young woman.
 
Amy remained restless, eager for a new assignment. The opportunity presented itself nine months later when she was accepted by the Church of England Zenana Mission to go as a missionary to India. Sailing for India in 1895, little did Amy realize that she would remain there for the next fifty-six years.

Keep reading...


Saturday, January 19, 2013

$40 in FREE oils

I try to keep this blog separate from my business selling essential oils because I don't want to be annoying and alienate my readership. However, I can't resist the opportunity to let my readers know about an unprecedented offer that Young Living (the company I represent) is putting on between the dates of January 15 through February 28.

During these dates, anyone who signs up to become  a wholesale customer will receive $40 in FREE oils. I describe the offer in my Grasping the Essence blog at the following link:

New Members Enjoy a FREE $40 Product Credit!


So if you or someone you know been waiting for the perfect opportunity to join Young Living as a wholesale customer, there has never been a better time. (This offer applies to people living in the UK as well as America.)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Three Cheers for Prince Charles!!!

In my post 'Gender Equality Threatens to Undermine British Monarchy', I detailed how plans to 'modernize' the British monarchy were taking a sinister twist with proposals to ensure that Princess Kate will never become queen.

While very few people support such measures, the less controversial proposals to bring gender equality to the laws of succession have been accepted almost without question. At least, until Prince Charles decided to complicate things by asking some difficult questions.

Yesterday I wrote a couple articles for Christian Voice about the proposed changes to the monarchy and why Prince Charles is right to be concerned. To read my articles, click on the following links:


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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Let Go and Let God? Think Again!

Have you ever been told by a well-meaning evangelical that the way to achieve a victorious Christian life is to “Let go and let God” or “stop trying and start trusting”? Have you ever been told that will-power should have no place in the Christian life? Have you ever been told that sanctification is 100% God and involves nothing of man's strength?

If you have encountered any of these ideas, then you have been exposed to a particularly deadly teaching known as "Keswick" theology. In my recent article "Is Will-Power Good or Bad?", I explore the roots of this heretical teaching and I show how it is completely unscriptural. To read my article, click on the following link:

'Is Will-Power Good or Bad?'

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Speaking Power

Scripture often refers to the tongue or lips as the gateway to the heart. Proverbs 21:23 tells us that “Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles.” Similarly, Jesus said that it was out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45) while James compares the tongue to a rudder on a ship, capable of defiling the whole body (James 3:3-6).

These verses seem to suggest that speech has an important function in defining who we are. The words that come out of our mouth are formative in determining the spiritual health of our very heart and soul.

Recent discoveries in neuroscience and cognitive psychology support the Bible’s teaching on this subject. Scientists are only just beginning to appreciate the incredible power that speech has in forming both our self-identity and our perception of the world. These discoveries underscore the premium the Biblical writers place on responsible speaking.

Keep reading...



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Monday, January 14, 2013

Google's World

In The Shallows, Nicholas Carr observed that “In Google’s world, which is the word we enter when we go online, there’s little place for the pensive stillness of deep reading or the fuzzy indirection of contemplation. Ambiguity is not an opening for insight but a bug to be fixed.”

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Homogenizing the Gender Polarity

In an article I wrote for the Colson Center, titled "How Gay 'Marriage' Became Plausible", I explored some of the issues that are upstream of the same-sex marriage debate. What are the plausibility structures that have led to a state of affairs whereby people are even willing to discuss something as absurd as changing the legal definition of marriage?

In my article I suggest that one key factor in bringing us to this state of affairs has been the persistent erosion of the gender polarity that occurred throughout the 20th century. Throughout the last century feminist writers kept telling us that gender is irrelevant in man-woman relationships, including the relationship of marriage. What happens if you consider gender to be a functional irrelevancy long enough is that suddenly same-sex marriage, in which gender is a formal irrelevancy, starts to seem a lot more plausible.

Back in the 18th and 19thcentury many female thinkers believed they were defending their sex precisely through maintaining gender distinctions. While they would sometimes offer appropriate challenges to our picture of what constituted conventional “feminine” virtues and roles, most took it for granted that there was a significant difference between being masculine and being feminine. Moreover, these differences were seen to be central to the very the glory of being a woman or being a man. For example, the Victorian writer Elizabeth Wordsworth once noted that “In an ideal state of society we never lose sight of the womanliness of women…why should it be considered a compliment to any woman to be told she writes, paints, sings, talks, or even thinks, like a man?”
 
By contrast, 20th-century feminist writers begin to see themselves as defending women precisely through their attempts to homogenize the gender polarity. No longer is it uplifting to emphasize the womanliness of women, as Elizabeth Wordsworth had done; but neither is it uplifting to explicitly praise women for being like men. Rather, under the feminist androgyny and egalitarianism of the 20th century, the greatest gift we can give to women is to question the very category of womanliness. (See my article at the Salvo blog, 'Too Feminine?')
 
As feminists continually downplayed the significance that gender had within society, reducing it to an irrelevancy like the color of a person’s eyes, it was inevitable that we would reach a point where gender is seen to be irrelevant in marriage too. As the significance of gender was gradually evaporated from the outworking of marriage, it was inevitable that we would reach a point where it no longer seemed so strange for it to also be evaporated from the definition of marriage itself.
  
What started with feminism attempting to empty marriage of all gender roles, ends up with the homosexual community attempting to empty marriage of any necessary relation to gender whatsoever. Suddenly the notion of same-sex 'marriage' no longer seems so strange.

To read my entire article about this, click on the following link:


Further Reading




Saturday, January 12, 2013

Conversionism and Economics

"Packaging the conversion process in a systematized fashion produces effect with parallels in market economics. In the rationalized economy, mass production allows for widespread distribution and consumption while maintaining a high degree of quality control over the product. Likewise the reduction of the gospel to its distilled essence and the methodization of the conversion process make widespread distribution of the gospel possible, while maintaining a cognitive uniformity in substantive quality of the message and an experiential uniformity in functional quality of the process. The packaging of the other dimensions of Evangelical spirituality produces similar effects." James Davison Hunter, American Evangelicalism: Conservative Religion and the Quandary of Modernity

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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Luther on the Sacraments

Summarizing Martin Luther's view on the blessed Eucharist, Gritsch and Jenson write, "The Lord's Supper is the combat ration of the church struggling to do God's will in the world. "If you could see how many daggers, spears, and arrows are at every moment aimed at you, you would be glad to come to the sacrament as often as possible (LC V, 82). Even children should partake of the Lord's Supper, "for they must help us to believe, to love, to pray, and to fight the devil (LC V, 87). In the sacrament of the altar, Christians not only remember Christ's sacrifice, his historicity, and anticipate his victorious return and his futurity, but also enjoy his 'real presence' in bread and wine." Lutheranism: The Theological Movement and Its Confessional Writings, pp. 75-76

A bit later there is a very helpful summary of the main differences between the Lutheran and the reformed approach to the Supper:

Calvinists taught that Christ comes spiritually to the soul by the word of the gospel. Within the gospel-event, the bread and wine have no role christologically different from the role of other, audible words; they are 'sumbols,' material adaptations of the gospel message to the material conditions of our perception. Christ's spiritual presence does not necessarily involve his bodily presence; the latter remains, as is proper to a body, at one place at one time, now 'with the Father' to whom he ascended. Our communion with Christ can nevertheless be bodily, because of the space and time-transcending character of spiritual realities; stirred to faith by Christ's spiritual presence in the words and symbols, our souls are carried to God, there to receive the blessing also of his bodily self-giving. Since the bread and wine, as symbols, mean the body and blood of the Lord, and since the faith in which that meaning terminates is indeed a reception also of his true bodily presence, the bread and wine can truly be said to 'be' his body and blood.

So far so good, apparently: the Reformation point is made without radical conflict with the philosophical tradition. But according to this teaching, Christ gives himself into bodily communion only with those who in fact are moved to faith by the symbolic bread and wine. The Lutherans objected that this does the same thing to the visible word that medieval doctrine did to the audible word: if these propositions enter the reflection that is internal to someone's experience of the sacrament, the gift of the sacrament must become conditional for him. To know if the gift is there, I must know if I believe it is there - which makes faith a condition and a work, and must also generate an endless  dialectic. The 'eating by the unbelievers,' affirmed by the Lutherans and denied by the Calvinists, became and remained the main point by which the two movements divided.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Gay 'Marriage' Update

I've written some articles for Christian Voice giving an update on the UK Government's plans to legalize gay 'marriage.'  You can read the updates at the following links:



If you are wondering what is wrong with gay 'marriage', then I suggest you first read my article 'Will the Real Enemies of Liberty Please Stand up.'

On Critical Thinking

"In our era, young children are continually being pressured to engage in self-expression before they are shown how to think coherently, and they are pressured to engage in reasoning before they are given the facts with which to reason. The result is not intellectual freedom but enslavement, for someone that is never taught how to think is by default trained to be a bondservant to the latest fad or fashion." Saints and Scoundrels, page 302

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Sunday, January 06, 2013

Gender Apartheird and the Problem of Pregnancy

In my feature article for Salvo 23, I have revisited the theme of the first article I ever wrote for Salvo, namely gender neutrality.

Titled, 'Unmaking a Difference: is Gender Neutrality the New Stereotype?' my article explores some of the lengths to which the gender neutralizers are going to try to eliminate gender from our society.

In the article I point out that for all the lip service being given to androgyny and gender-neutrality, there remains one natural, final barrier to reaching the gender-free utopia: pregnancy. The fact of pregnancy constantly reminds us of the one thing that the new social architects would like us to forget: that men and women are inescapably different, that men and women have different lived experiences. 

The gender-neutralizers are not unaware of the problem that pregnancy poses. In April 2009, the British newspaper the Telegraph ran an article titled, "Telling pregnant women not to drink is 'sexist.'" The story cited medical legal expert Dr. Colin Gavaghan, who called "singling out one sex for particular monitoring and lecturing from healthcare professionals" a "straightforward sexist policy." 
 
Well, let's face it: when it comes to having a responsible pregnancy, women are singled out. Dr. Gavaghan seems unwilling to admit that only women are able to become pregnant. However "equal" our society strives to be, assistance for pregnancy will always necessarily be targeted towards the female sex. 

Or will it?
 
In 2006 the British Department of Health published a new edition of its Pregnancy Book, and just so men won't feel left out, it has a chapter especially for them, which says, among other things, that men can experience nausea as a symptom of pregnancy, too. And a 2010 report in The Daily Mail outlined efforts by the UK government "to get fathers more involved in their child's upbringing from before birth and beyond." These measures include giving fathers government-funded lessons on the benefits of breastfeeding.

But efforts like these will never satisfy the aspirations of the more extreme gender neutralizers. For them, the only way to truly solve the problem of "gender apartheid" is to do away with pregnancy altogether. In January 2012, LifeSiteNews quoted from an article Dr. Anna Smajdor had recently written for the Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics. Dr. Smajdor argued that in order for men and women to be equal, all women must stop becoming pregnant and hand their reproductive potential over to science and technology. "Pregnancy is a condition that causes pain and suffering, and that affects only women," Dr. Smajdor said, so "women are disadvantaged." 

LifeSiteNews journalist Peter Baklinski commented,
to be a woman, for Smajdor, simply means to become biologically more like a man. To do this, a woman's innate and natural potential to procreate, nurture, and bear a new human life must be stripped away and handed over to science and technology. Only when all human beings do not bear children will a genuine equality be more closely approached, she proposes.
To read more about this, click on the following link:

'Unmaking a Difference  Is Gender Neutrality the New Stereotype?'

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Friday, January 04, 2013

The Executive Branch

Historically, the Executive Branch has only played a limited role, and the United States Constitution even prohibits the President from introducing legislation. This was intentional, since the legal structure of the United States was set up so that most power resided in the states and in their elected legislatures. Throughout the twentieth-century, however, American Presidents have progressively assumed unprecedented powers. Yet nothing compares with the way Obama has reinvented the Executive office.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Equality Police Hope to Prevent Princess Kate From Becoming Queen

An MP is proposing legislation that would
prevent Princess Kate from ever
becoming Queen
The move to bring equality to the laws of succession has taken a strange twist as an MP has proposed legislation that would prevent Princess Kate from ever becoming Queen.

John Hemming, MP, is attempting to add a clause to the Succession to the Crown Bill that would mean Princess Kate would be called “Princess consort” rather than Queen when Prince William ascends to the throne.

The proposed amendment is based on allegations that the current system is ‘sexist’ since it allows the wife of a King to be called Queen but it does not allow the husband of a queen to be called King. Mr Hemming said: “It’s not right that a Queen Regnant is treated as less important than a King Regnant.”

If the House of Commons agrees to add Mr Hemming's amendment it to the Succession Bill, then the royal family could become the first victims of the equality measures they have tacitly supported.

A spokesman from Clarence House said, “It’s a matter for the Government”, suggesting that the royal couple is prepared to acquiesce with whatever Parliament decides.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

2012 in Review

I did a lot of writing in 2012, and I have posted links to some of the highlights below:

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Becoming Classically Educated

Those of us who are involved in classical education, whether as writers, teachers, home-educators or parents, find ourselves at a disadvantage. How can you teach classically when you yourself have not been given a classical education? Perhaps you have struggled with that. Perhaps you are a homeschool parent who feels inadequate to the task of giving your children a classical education. If so, then there are four things you should do.

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