Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Bad Week for Barack. And It's Only Tuesday.

Lousy results in public opinion polls. The welfare state growing bigger and more ominous than ever. And attendance at Easter services at a church with a race-baiting preacher.

It's been a bad week for President Barack Obama -- and we're only just starting.

Here's a good Bill O'Reilly clip.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Today's Posts


A Busy Easter Week

It's been quite a week over here!

This month's LifeSharer letter was finished and sent out...There was the usual blogging every morning...Monday's P.A.L. Night produced over 70 letters which we have been sending out all week...We had a presentation of "When Swing Was King" with another scheduled for this afternoon...We spoke to three other nursing homes who have invited us to do "WSWK"...Our somewhat reduced sidewalk counseling team was in action in Bellevue...New material was sent over for translation for our Russian-language website...Writing, editing and correspondence projects were completed...A very important strategy meeting in Lincoln with other pro-life leaders to develop new opposition to Planned Parenthood...Facebook activity...House and lawn work...Visiting Mom...Sermon preparation.

Why do we do it? The same reason that you do your various ministries -- we're Easter people living (for the time being) in a Good Friday world!

But, as one of our Easter weekend posts below emphasizes, Sunday's comin'!

Have a great Easter celebration.

Easter Reflections (Second Time Around)

As relevant as ever, here are some compelling Easter weekend reading (and listening) recommendations I posted  last year. They include Quin Hillyer's "What Is So Good About This Friday?"over at American Spectator, "Thoughts on Easter and the Resurrection" by Randy Alcorn at Eternal Perspective Ministries, excerpts from an Easter sermon presented by Curtis Young of Presbyterian Church of the Atonement outside Washington, D.C., "The First Cry from the Cross" (a sermon delivered on Sunday Morning, October 24th, 1869, by Charles H. Spurgeon at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in Newington, England) and Scott Wesley Brown's superb and inspiring song, "Can You Hear the Echoes?"

Find them all (and a couple of others) in this post.

The Paradox of Good Friday

A paradox, as G. K. Chesterton famously put it, is “Truth standing on her head to get attention.” Our aversion and resistance to truth is so strong that God often finds it necessary to employ extreme measures to get us to see past the lies we have embraced.

Never was this truer than on what Christians call “Good Friday.” As [Richard John] Neuhaus writes, “If what Christians say about Good Friday is true, then it is, quite simply, the truth about everything.” That “everything” starts with telling the truth about the human condition. And how does God do that? By paradoxically punishing the offended party, instead of the guilty one...

Read more of Chuck Colson's excellent Good Friday Breakpoint column right here.

The Gospel (Old Testament)

"But He was pierced for our transgressions,
He was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on Him,
and by His wounds we are healed."
Isaiah 53:5
(Just one example of the gospel as described centuries before Christ gave Himself as a sacrifice for us all.)

It's Friday...But Sunday's Comin'

The Empty Tomb Still Denied By Empty Heads

Mark Tooley extols the invigorating truths of Easter week by comparing them to the lifeless arrogance of liberal religionists. It's a very good article and it's right here in American Spectator.

Hundreds of millions of Christians will celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ on Easter Sunday. And after a century and a half of liberal Protestant attempts to redefine the resurrection into merely a metaphor, the vast majority of Christians still believe that Christ's body physically arose. Revisionist theologians still find airtime on the History Channel or PBS, but their project never gained a mass following.

The Jesus Seminar, founded in 1985 to adjudicate over which Scriptures were historically accurate, and which always excluded any talk about miracles, once gained widespread attention for its routine objections to traditional Christian belief. "Christ's Body Actually Eaten by Wild Dogs!" was a typical headline from a Jesus Seminar gathering, where liberal scholars would vote with color marbles over which biblical verses were valid. Eventually these self-selected academics ran out of incendiary claims, and the media mostly stopped heeding their pronouncements after founder Robert Funk died in 2005, if not well before. Co-founder and former Roman Catholic priest John Dominic Crosson, now about 76 years old, still soldiers on. He and other kindred academics routinely speak around the nation, gathering usually small audiences of gray-headed, mostly retired clergy. Of course, the Jesus Seminar skeptics insist notions about a divine Jesus being born of a virgin or rising from the dead were self-servingly and dogmatically imposed by the later church. They themselves typically and dogmatically assert Christianity's unqualified support for a redistributive welfare state, sexual liberation, and opposition to the American "empire."

Another aging survivor of the Jesus Seminar is nearly 80 year old retired Episcopal Church Bishop John Shelby Spong, though his fame preceded his induction. In the 1980s and 1990s, while Bishop of Newark, Spong penned books speculating that the Virgin Mary was a prostitute impregnated by a Roman soldier, and that St. Paul was a self-hating homosexual, among other saucy assertions that once gained headlines but now excite yawns. He earned audiences with Phil Donahue and other breathless talk show hosts, most of whom are now themselves faded from view. Spong always claimed that "fundamentalist," i.e. orthodox Christianity, was dying, and he was its savior. That his New Jersey diocese lost 40 percent of its members while he was providing enlightened leadership as bishop never seemed to provoke self-reflection. One bemused observer who recently went to hear him speak at a New Jersey college campus remarked he was able to locate the event by following the trail of "old people."

...Spong still runs a website for airing his revisionist prognostications, charging $9.95 every three months for subscribers. He tut-tuts about the "fundamentalists" who still believe in a physical resurrection of Jesus and concludes that "something of enormous power gripped the disciples following the crucifixion that transformed their lives." But it was "some fifty years before that transforming experience was interpreted as the resuscitation of a three days dead Jesus to the life of the world." About a decade ago, Spong rejected "theism," i.e., belief in a personal God, which was the logical outcome of his ultra-rationalist rejection of everything supernatural. His website makes for grim reading, especially on Easter and Christmas...

These "intellectual tyrants" were long ascendant in liberal Protestant academia for over a century. Despite their decades of turgid exertions, the fully resurrected Jesus remains as captivating as ever. Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Today's Posts


By the Numbers: The Abortion Controversy in Perspective

Dan McLaughlin posted a whole lot of numbers over at Red State blog yesterday -- numbers calculating how many Americans have died in wars, how many died through execution, how many detainees were water-boarded, and so on. He did this to give an enlightened perspective on the ongoing public controversy over abortion.

And yes, he gives those statistics too.

It is all very sobering. But remarkably instructive too.

Thus McLaughlin concludes:

You know, there are a lot of issues I care about, as a conservative Republican. I don’t especially like having to draw lines in the sand over abortion, and if you’re reading this, even if you’re pro-life, chances are you don’t either. But it is useful at times to prick our consciences with the sheer scale of this atrocity, happening daily under our noses.

Liberal activists and lawyers devote massive efforts every year to battling the death penalty - yet all the executions of the post-Roe era don’t even add up to a third of a day’s worth of the number of abortions. We agonize, and rightly so, over the cost in life of our wars - but the toll of abortion is equal to fighting the Battle of Antietam, or two Battles of Okinawa, every single week, or two entire Vietnam Wars every month. Our commentariat was racked with paroxysms of moral reproach over three prisoners being waterboarded, yet considers it gauche to even mention well over three thousand abortions daily, each of which destroys a biologically unique human being.

(Your religion may override your regard for the science, but there’s no way around the fact that an unborn child has his or her own unique genetic code, the definitive scientific hallmark of an individual).

Numbers alone can’t make the moral judgments that constitute public policy for us. But they can certainly inform our sense of perspective. And looking at the number of abortions is a reminder that maybe, sometimes, we go too far in trying to make this just another issue.

Ayn Rand on Abortion, Pro-Lifers and Moral Selfishness

Think you know Ayn Rand? Think again.

In this 3 and 1/2 minute audio, you'll hear such bits of wisdom read from the "conservative" thinker as:

* Parenthood is "an impossible responsibility for young people. Parenthood would force them to give up their future and condemn them to a life of hopeless drudgery, a slavery to a child's physical and financial needs."

* Pro-life advocates are therefore moved by hatred of the human race and not love for embryos.

* Preborn children are alive (made of living cells) only in the sense that one's hair and fingernails are alive. (The audience, as ignorant of or indifferent to basic embryology as is Ms. Rand, applauds at this statement.)

* Describing pro-life advocates, Rand insists, "Their hatred is directed against human beings as such: against the mind, against reason, against ambition, against success, against love..."

* Pro life advocates are intellectualy dishonest.

* Oblivious to the dripping irony of her statement, Ms. Rand says of pro-lifers, "By what right does anyone claim the power to dispose of the lives of others by dictating their personal choices?"

* Rand insists that the only foundation for a pro-life ethic is collectivism; that is, the belief "that men are the property of the state or the tribe."

* "The worship of the family is mini-racism."

* "People who do not want to have children are selfish. This is true." (Audience laughs and claps.)

* True selfishness is "the man of self-esteem who refuses to be a sacrificial animal and wants to live his own life for his own sake."

* "When you bring children into the world, you sacrifice your own sovereignty and become a means to an end."

* "The primary right involved is not the right of an unborn child, nor of the family, nor of society, nor of God. The primary right is one which in today's public clamor on the subject few, if any, voices have had the courage to uphold, the right of man and woman to their own happiness, the right not to be regarded as the means to any end."

Daniel Henninger: Obama's Shrinking Likability

America Heading for Disaster: Just Do the Math

U.S. households are now getting more in cash handouts from the government than they are paying in taxes for the first time since the Great Depression.

Households received $2.3 trillion in some kind of government support in 2010. That includes expanded unemployment benefits, as well as payments for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and stimulus spending, among other things.

But that’s more than the $2.2 trillion households paid in taxes, an amount that has slumped largely due to the recession, according to an analysis by the Fiscal Times.

Also, an estimated 59% of the 308.7 million Americans in this country get at least one federal benefit, according to the Census Bureau, based on 2009 data. An estimated 46.5 million get Social Security; 42.6 million get Medicare; 42.4 million get Medicaid; 36.1 million get food stamps; 12.4 million get housing subsidies; and 3.2 million get Veterans' benefits.

And the handouts from the government have been growing. Government cash handouts account for a whopping 79% of household growth since 2007, even as household tax payments--for things like the income and payroll tax, among other taxes--have fallen by $312 billion...

Elizabeth MacDonald's story for FOX Business News is a frightening but essential read. So read it, pass it around and, if you haven't already, join the tea party chorus in demanding our Congressmen and Senators start fixing this outrageous mess right now.

Belarus Dictator: "There Was So Much Democracy That It Was Sickening."

"We are responsible for this ourselves. We took on so much democracy on the eve of the election that everyone -- both you and me -- started feeling sick. There was so much democracy that it was sickening."

The above statement comes today from Belarus' "Dictator for life," Alexander Lukashenko. He is blaming the April 11 bombing in a Minsk metro station that killed 13 people on his primary enemies: tolerance, openness and democracy.

Though no stranger to irrationality, Lukashenko's claim is bizarre even for him. After all, he allows no democracy in his country whatsoever. Elections are thoroughly rigged. The constitution is ignored. Neither the press or the individual possesses freedom of speech. Indeed, a corrupt bureaucracy controls all aspects of life, even religion.

Nevertheless, the Communist tyrant remains paranoid about democracy. Either that or Lukashenko is merely playing an old Soviet game; namely, declaring a crisis posed by an invented enemy in order to justify yet further injustices on his own people.

I'm guessing the latter.

And so I'm warning Belorussians to gear up for new ravages from the Communist thugs.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Today's Posts

Euthanasia vs Compassion, Justice and the Sanctity of Life

April 2011
Dear VSM LifeSharers,        

Today’s debates surrounding euthanasia are framed almost exclusively in terms of technology. Such terms as "brain death"; "persistent vegetative state"; "intrusive means of nutrition and hydration"; "heroic" means of "prolonging death"; “the quality of life”; the common paranoia over being "kept alive on machines,” and so on all tend to present society's responsibility to the infirm and severely disabled as a radically new problem because of the advances in this century of medical technology.

Even Christians often act as if modern times have presented God Himself with some kind of dilemma – the forces of science going beyond His scope of action.  Such Christians have begun to look at the absolutes given in Scripture in a condescending way. "Well, those were applicable in Jesus' time and perhaps even in the 19th century but they certainly can't be applicable now, at least not in a literal way. We have new problems; we have to find new solutions. We require an up-to-date source of authority to guide us through these murky waters." And who becomes those authorities?  A hospital committee?  An insurance company?  A government bureaucrat?  An author whose book is endorsed by Oprah or Ellen?

Don’t play this game.  For central to Christianity is the eternality of truth.  God’s revelations of His law are timeless and humble submissions to those revelations are always in order – for all and any times, under all and any circumstances.  The Bible teaches us that "Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever" and His truth as given in the Holy Scriptures are forever "profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness."  The world is still judged by the standards of His righteousness as they pertain to any moral question.  And that naturally includes all issues of the sanctity of human life.  Therefore, the debate is not, at its core, an argument based upon technology at all but rather upon changing values...

Read the rest of the April LifeSharer letter at the Vital Signs Ministries website right here.

A Few More Letters

Now please keep in mind that the reason I share these letters and links with you is because I earnestly hope they will motivate you to write a couple yourself.

In fact, it's a priority purpose of Vital Signs Blog -- informing readers who will then take appropriate action.

That action always includes prayer and passing along the information to others. But it sometimes means writing a letter or making a phone call. So, in addition to the P.A.L.Night related posts from yesterday (How to Run a Letter-Writing Party, Writing to Planned Parenthood Supporters: An Example, and A Very Productive P.A.L. Night), here's a few more from my pile of letters the other night which I hope will elicit at least a couple from you. It ain't hard -- really. And it's certainly worth it.

The contact information can be found by using the links.

Dear Mattel,

Macabre and oversexed dolls for little girls aged 6 to 12?  You gotta’ be kidding!  Mattel’s “Monster High” dolls represent an audacious and alarming new low for your company.  One could hardly imagine a less sensitive, less responsible product.  What a sad devolution of what was once a noble company.

Of course, because of your decision to market such dolls to fragile and impressionable children, I will not buy any Mattel products at all.  And I’ll be passing along my concerns to friends, family and to others in my church, business, blog, social networking sites and so on.

Dear Senator Nelson,

We have asked you for many years to join in the effort to remove tax funding from Planned Parenthood, the nations #1 abortionist who is now killing nearly 350,000 preborn babies every year through surgical abortion.  And though you’ve long claimed to be pro-life, you have not come aboard.  Hmmm.

How about now?  With the recent revelations through undercover videotapes of Planned Parenthood staffers from around the country covering up statutory rape and even giving advice to sex traffickers in how to escape the law, are you finally going to begin aggressively working to de-fund this nefarious business?

I await your response – one that doesn’t bother to play the “separate pockets” argument.  Planned Parenthood should not be getting a dime of taxpayer money.

Dear World Vision,

Please get out of the family planning business and get back to your original vision, that is, preaching the gospel and tendering the love Christ to the needy through direct relief.  Until this change is made, I cannot support World Vision any more nor can I encourage others to do so.

And here's one Claire wrote:

Dear Congressman Terry,

I am very disappointed by the cave-in of the Republicans in Congress.  The so-called budget deal might be a start but you guys were re-elected to do some major and lasting overhaul on the out of control spending and deficit. You didn't do it.  You let the President and Harry Reid call the shots -- again.  Why? You're in charge in the Congress -- do the job that we sent you to Washington to do.  If you guys can't, there are others who are willing.

Are Those Missing 50 Million Global Warming Refugees Hiding at Al Gore's Place?

The issue of climate change is not whether the climate is changing.  It is. The question is whether we face catastrophic changes which require us to wreck the economy to save it.  So far, evidence of the coming climate apocalypse remains decidedly absent.

For instance, blogger Gavin Atkins points to the prediction of just five years ago that we would be seeing tens of millions of climate refugees: "In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010. These people, it was said, would flee a range of disasters including sea level rise, increases in the numbers and severity of hurricanes, and disruption to food production."

It turns out, however, that the disasters haven't occurred and the population has been increasing in the areas targeted by the UN.  Oops.

It seems being at the UN means never having to be right.

(Doug Bandow, American Spectator)

Uncomfortable About Hell?

Max Lucado on hell: "A glimpse into the pit won’t brighten your day, but it will enlighten your understanding of Jesus."

Sue Bohlin from Probe Ministries recommended this article on her Facebook page. She wrote, "With all the discussion about hell caused by the Rob Bell firestorm, Max Lucado tweeted a link to the best thing about hell I've ever read. Sobering, biblical, trustworthy."

She's right. It is an excellent study. Brief, punchy, very well presented.

About Those Toxic Mercury Bulbs: Will Nanny State Politicians See the Light?

How Many Politicians Are Needed To Screw Up A Light Bulb? is a Forbes article by Larry Bell that easily makes the must-read list. In fact, with Bell's witty writing and the alarming facts he distributes throughout the article, it's one I suggest is a must to pass around too. Here's a teaser:

The lights have been permanently shut off at the last major U.S. incandescent light bulb plant, General Electric’s Winchester, Va., facility. But don’t worry.  GE’s Chinese plants will replace them with a different kind that is supposed to be better.

Anyway, we really won’t have any choice. Thanks to pressure from environmental activist groups, a 2007 law passed by the Democrat-controlled Congress and signed by Republican President George W. Bush will make the sale of standard incandescent 100-watt bulbs illegal effective January 1, 2012, 75-watt bulbs on Jan. 1, 2013, and 60- and 40-watt bulbs as of Jan. 1, 2014. This was because they can’t meet new government-imposed “efficiency standards.” Chief sponsors were Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) and Fred Upton (R-MI). Rep. Upton, now Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, has since offered to hold a new hearing to consider removing the ban. He hasn’t promised to repeal it, but maybe he’ll finally see the light.

So that currently leaves us with two alternatives. It’s to either use expensive compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) that contain toxic mercury, or even much pricier light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs that don’t, but which produce even poorer illumination color quality.

Proponents argue that CFL lamps contain only very small amounts of mercury. Great! But then why are special clean-up instructions, room ventilating precautions and disposal requirements needed in case we happen to break a bulb?  And what prevents soil and surface water contamination from countless units that ultimately wind up in landfills?...

More Persecution of "Unregistered" Church Leaders

The Nanny State insists on controlling everything -- including a citizen's religious convictions. Thus, the increasing persecution of Christian churches who refuse to register with their Communist governments. Last week I reported the escalating persecution of believers in Belarus. This week the AP has a story about several pastors and other congregation leaders being arrested in China. All under the justification of state control.

In addition to hauling several to jail, others are being put under house arrest.  Some church members have lost their homes or jobs amid an official campaign to shut down the church.

Why does the State fear these independent churches so much? After all, they are not plotting against the government. They are not rebels or criminals. Indeed, they are composed of citizens whose moralistic lifestyles make them peaceful, pleasant and very productive members of the society.

The answer is that the Secular State cannot allow any Lord besides itself. For it insists on a citizen's complete allegiance and submission. It demands control of a citizen's wages, personal freedoms, and social relationships. It must eradicate any independent thinking, values or action. It brings religious institutions into play only as another means of control. The Russian Orthodox Church under the Soviets is a prime example.

Today's requirements in Russia, Belarus, China, Vietnam and North Korea that churches need official registration to operate without violent persecution is the first stage in building just such a monopoly on religion. The courageous Christian believers in these countries who refuse registration are those who know where the State is headed; namely, total domination of the citizenry. And so the believers' opposition represents both their allegiance to God and, ironically, a loving concern for the freedoms of even  their non-believing neighbors.

Prayers for such brave and principled people are very much in order. So too are efforts to encourage them (we offered a great new opportunity yesterday -- see the number four item in this post) as well as the advocacy of greater religious freedom throughout the world.

Planned Parenthhood Employee of the Year Blows the Whistle

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Today's Posts

How to Run a Letter-Writing Party

Besides the stationary and envelopes, pens and stamps, and the dessert treats, an effective letter-writing party needs direction and appropriate contact information. A little preparation pays off in big dividends. All of us who have been involved in this element of Vital Signs Ministries can testify to the value of writing letters. Why else would we continue to keep this as a part of our ministry after 30 years? Letter-writing works. And letter-writing parties are an excellent way to make that happen. But you do need to do a bit of homework before the coffee is poured.

For instance, I print handout number one from last night’s Vital Signs letter-writing party.  In it, you’ll see the targeted items -- items which I certainly hope will serve as stimulation for you to write a few letters of your own.  In addition to this handout, we had a packet of fact sheets and contact information.  However, for this blog version, I'll liberally substitute those with appropriate links.  Let's go.

P.A. L. Night -- April 2011

1) Planned Parenthood de-funding.

Letters need to be sent to Congressman and Senators regularly (every 3-4 weeks, even more when legislation is nearing a vote) urging them to remember our nation's historic values regarding sanctity of life, the extreme need to cut government spending and the unjust nature of requiring the majority of America taxpayers to give money for acts they consider morally reprehensible.

2) Exposing Planned Parenthood to the public.

In this category, we're encouraging letters to political leaders, editors of newspapers, magazines, local and national TV networks, companies and foundations that support the mega-abortion corporation.   We also believe notes should be sent to clergy who should be doing more to inform their congregations about what Planned Parenthood is all about.  (For relevant information with which to "season" your letters, use the material we make available. That material included several posts from Vital Signs Blog: 1, 2, 3, 4; "Things Planned Parenthood's 'Truth Team' Forgot to Mention" by Susan E. Wills published in American Thinker, and "Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now" from Live Action via Susan B. Anthony List.)

By the way, according to Life Decisions International some of the companies who partner with and/or donate to Planned Parenthood are: Whole Foods Market, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo (including Wachovia), Chevron (including Texaco), Midas, Nike, Marriott (including Courtyard, Fairfield, Renaissance, Ritz-Carlton, etc.), Johnson & Johnson, Staples, Olive Garden, and Red Lobster. Letters of complaint (we encourage boycotts too) are definitely in order.

Also relevant to this category are letters protesting Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle’s attendance at a Planned Parenthood party and his highly laudatory remarks in behalf of the organization. (Mayor Jim Suttle, City of Omaha, 1819 Farnam St, Suite 300, Omaha, NE 68183)

3) Pro-Life Legislation in the Nebraska Unicameral

Contact is needed with state senators urging them to vote for pro-life bills. Among the most critical are LB 521 which would prohibit Planned Parenthood's dastardly scheme for web cam abortions and the parental consent bill, LB 690. Also, members of the Judiciary Committee need to be urged to vote LB 521 out of committee where it can be fairly debated by the whole body.

4) Christians under persecution.

We will be introducing attendees of our P.A.L. Night to the remarkable new service provided by Prisoner Alert, a ministry of Voice for the Martyrs. It is a service which offers several translated phrases for use in your letters as well as specific contact information.  (You should avail yourself of this marvelous opportunity to encourage our beleaguered brothers and sisters in the Faith. Just look at the right sidebar of the link I give here and follow the simple directions.)

5) Outrageous government spending

Our Congressmen and Senators must act to drastically cut spending and reduce the unsustainable budget deficits. Specific programs or departments you might mention? Planned Parenthood, of course, as well as United Nations; the UNFPA; NPR; the National Endowment for the Arts; and a whole lot more.  But way beyond those specific programs, huge cuts must be made across the board in order to save the American economy.

6) What is World Vision doing in the family planning business?

The information in these Vital Signs Blog posts ("Japan Relief Dollars: Should They Go to World Vision?" and "Should Your Dollars Go to World Vision? A Follow Up."), is enough for us to suggest letters go to World Vision, asking them to stop working with abortion organizations. Indeed, they've made a very bad decision in getting caught up with family planning in the first place. That's not the gospel. That's not direct aid. And, because World Vision carefully hides this involvement from their donors, it's not even truth in advertising.

7) Mattel Toys

We urge courteous complaints about the company’s "Monster High" dolls.  Read here for the why and contact info.

8) ABC

Of course, given the profane and indecent schlock that fills TV programs (and commercials), principled protests are in order to every network. We give you just one target for tonight -- ABC for its plans for "Good Christian Bitches."  (Here are some details.)

9) Thank yous.

Thank you notes are always a part of a Vital Signs Ministries P.A.L. Night.  Among those we suggested were Congressmen who stood up to Barack Obama and the Democrats and voted against the grossly inadequate showdown cut.  We also stressed the value of thanking pro-life, pro-family heroes for their good work.  Lila Rose, Joni-Eareckson-Tada, Randy Alcorn, Joe Scheidler and the Nebraskans who lead the pro-life fight in the Nebraska Unicameral are just a few of those that we wrote to.

(Below are posts which show you samples of the letters produced last night. Feel free to use them as models for your own.)

Writing to Planned Parenthood Supporters: An Example

Dear Whole Foods Market,
Whole Foods Market, Inc.
550 Bowie Street
Austin, TX 78703-4644

I write to ask if your company will be continuing to support Planned Parenthood even though the mega-abortion business has been scandalized in recent months through numerous undercover video tapes. These tapes have revealed numerous Planned Parenthood staffers around the country illegally covering up statutory rape and even advising sex traffickers how to escape the law.  In addition, Planned Parenthood has been caught making alarmingly misleading claims about the health services they provide.

And, oh yes, there’s that little matter of the missing millions of American taxpayer funds which Planned Parenthood refuses to explain.

In light of these very disturbing reports (not to mention the tragic fact that Planned Parenthood is the nation’s number one abortionist with nearly 350,000 preborn babies being killed by surgical abortion every year), I urge you to completely sever ties with this nefarious business.

Until you do, I must respectfully announce I will not be doing business with Whole Foods Market.  I will also share the news of this regrettable partnership with friends, family, my church members and the visitors to my blog and networking sites.

Please do the right thing.  And soon.

Denny Hartford (with title and address)

This is one of the letters written at Vital Signs Ministries P.A.L. Night yesterday evening. Similar letters are being sent tomorrow to JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo (including Wachovia), Chevron (including Texaco, Xpress Lube), Midas, Nike, Marriott (including Courtyard, Fairfield, Renaissance, Ritz-Carlton, etc.), Johnson & Johnson, Staples, Olive Garden, and Red Lobster.

A Very Productive P.A.L. Night

Here's a quick sampling of some of the other letters (70 plus) that were written at last night's letter-writing event. Not bad for only 8 of us!

Bill wrote Nebraska State Senator Coash --

I want to thank you for your efforts on behalf of LB521 and LB690.  These bills address issues, as you well know, that are serious enough to warrant a considered debate by the full unicameral.  Please do not relent in your attempts to get these bills out of committee.  Unborn children are counting on you.

Quint wrote the stonewalling State Senator Brad Ashford who has worked hard to keep a parental consent law from getting the full floor debate that Nebraskans deserve --

I urge you to vote for LB521 -- at least to allow this bill to come out of committee and be voted on the floor.  This bill could go a long way toward stopping Planned Parenthood’s plans to establish at least 6 new “health clinics” across Nebraska.  I don’t need to remind you that Planned Parenthood is our country’s largest abortion provider, and does over 1/3 of all surgical abortions nationwide.  Beyond that, they do many chemical abortions which they plan to do by web cam conferencing where an abortionist merely talks "off site" to the patient.  I’m sure Nebraska doesn’t want this.  I and my friends certainly don’t.

Don Kohls protested Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle's enthusiastic support of Planned Parenthood --

I was very disappointed to read in the Omaha World-Herald of your celebration of the new Planned Parenthood facility on 93rd Street. What a tragedy that you would support an organization that is the largest provider of surgical abortion in the U.S. as well as a distributor of the dangerous abortifacient RU-486. Planned Parenthood is also known for its underhanded cover-up of crime; i.e., sexual activity between a minor and an adult and even advising the sex slave industry how to avoid the law. Your support of this organization that destroys life is wrong.

I wrote a card to Congressman Lee Terry about the G.O.P. caving in to Democrat pressure on the budget vote --

Of that much publicized $38 billion budget cut the G.O.P. “won”, only a few million are really going to get axed!  That’s using the CBO figures.  And, for that matter, even the $38 billion was peanuts given that the deficit rose almost twice that amount in the 8 days before the vote!  Please, Congressman Terry, get serious about cutting spending!

I'll post a few more tomorrow.

Bad News on the S&P Ratings; Lowest Since Pearl Harbor

Hard on the heels of yesterday's post here on Vital Signs Blog ("America's Economy Is Imploding But to the Press, It's Just 'Sluggish Growth'") comes an alarming report from the U.K.'s Guardian that 1) underscores just how fragile is the American economy and 2) there are newspapers willing to print bad news about America's financial weakness. It's just that those newspapers are usually in England. Here's a couple of excerpts:

Shares fell heavily on Wall Street on Monday after a leading ratings agency fanned fears of Europe's debt crisis spreading across the Atlantic by issuing a strong warning about America's failure to tackle its budget deficit. In a move seen by Wall Street as a "shot across the bows" of bickering politicians in Washington, Standard and Poor's (S&P) said it was cutting the outlook on the US's long-term rating from stable to negative for the first time since the attack on Pearl Harbor 70 years ago.

The announcement surprised the financial markets...In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average ended the day down 140 points, or 1.1%, with the dollar weaker on the foreign exchanges and yields rising on US treasury bills. The FTSE 100 in London was down 126 points at 5870 – a drop of more than 2% – as ongoing concerns about the eurozone's debt crisis were compounded by the setback for the world's biggest economy...

Ted Scott, director, Global Strategy at F&C, said: "Indeed, it should focus the mind of the politicians of all parties to agree a credible debt reduction plan now that the clock is ticking on its debt rating."

I suggest this would make an excellent post to send along to your Congressmen and Senators with your urgent appeal that they get serious about the disastrous overspending and make the drastic cuts that are truly necessary. We don't have any time left to keep fooling around.

Fashion Wars (Mom vs Daughter) Advice

I will be the first one to admit the feeling of profound dread as soon as I hear the question, “Mom, can we go shopping?” I am always hesitant to enter the teen department and come face to face with the latest fashion trend, knowing full well it is likely a few inches shorter and a tighter fit than what I already complained about last season.  But I dare not let them go alone.  Therefore I look at it as an opportunity to form and protect my daughters.   Being perceived as a “cool” mom must take a back seat to what is needed to assist our daughters in dressing with dignity and self-respect.  I need to remind myself of that during every trip to the mall when it is the last place I want to be.

These fashion showdowns are worth fighting because if we don’t hold our ground now, we will be incapable of fighting the inevitable battles later.  Some mothers say that they have to “choose their battles”.  But I say that is nothing more than an excuse for caving in to the temptation to be the “Cool Mom” in exchange for backing down.  Caving in on fashion now often means caving in on sexual morality later. You can’t win the latter unless you show yourself to be a warrior mom for the former...

Here's a brief essay from Jenn Giroux that is well-worth some reflection. And it's not just parents of teens that will find instructive principles therein. Check it out.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Today's Posts

Everyone Is Significant: A Rite of Passage Lesson

Perhaps the most important lesson I learned from my father was that all people are significant.  Regardless of race, creed, social or economic standing, education, abilities or lack thereof, achievements or failures, age or what that person might be able to do for you – everyone is important; everyone counts; everyone has inherent significance.  Because of this, Dad taught me that I should be willing to listen to people, to treat them in a kind and dignified manner, to tell them the truth, to be willing to do them a good turn, and to act towards them as I would like them to act towards me.

It was a great lesson to learn. And my Dad taught it both by precept and by example.  I saw it in the way he treated his family, our neighbors, the people he worked with, and people he just met along the way.  He was a kind, empathetic and very sociable man.  He made people feel at ease and accepted.  In fact, he made them feel...significant.

I remember so well Saturday afternoons at Banner Tire in south Denver in the late 1960’s.  Banner was a service station and garage that my Dad managed. The business sold tires and wheels, offered tow truck service and operated a gasoline bulk plant that served other gas stations and a few ranches east of Denver.  I worked there during junior high school and part of my high school years too.  And the memory of a bunch of men sitting around the garage on a late Saturday afternoon is one of the most vivid of my life.  The guys were an eclectic group: an Eastern European banker, a retired insurance man, a nearby restaurant owner, the Mexican roofers whose place was up the hill, a mechanic or two…and my Dad and me.

Some of the guys would be sitting on folding chairs, some on tires or pop cases, some just lay down shop towels and sat on the hoist which was raised a few feet off the floor.  It was a great time -- late enough that everyone had pretty much finished their work for the day.  Well, except for me.  I still had to pump gas for the cars that drove up.  But the heavier work of the day was done and the men enjoyed an hour just sitting around and talking.

In the midst of this conversation was my father.  He was a terrific storyteller -- entertaining, witty and wise -- but he didn’t dominate the conversation.  Rather he orchestrated it.  He asked questions, transitioned into new subjects, and deftly handed off discussion points to others.  Sure, his stories sparkled when he got round to telling them and the other men treasured Dad, but a great deal of his contributions were other-directed.  “Russ, what did you end up doing with that old flatbed truck?”  “How’s your boy doing at the Academy, Tony?”  “You fellas are talking about close calls, you need to ask Mr. Garcia about what happened up at his place last night.”  Every once in awhile, he would even pull me into the action. “Oh, my boy had quite a run-in with that gal, too.  Son, tell ‘em about when she brought that Dodge in here with the ducks in the back seat!”

Sitting around these adults – being accepted by them and learning from them and watching them interact with one another – was a tremendous rite of passage for me.  And I will be forever grateful to them all for that.  But I am especially forever grateful to my Dad for teaching me that all of these men were unique and interesting and valuable.  Dad taught me a great deal of how to engage people, how to elicit the stories of their life, how to make them feel comfortable.  And how to develop a relationship that underscores for both parties their significance.

Of course, the original source for this lesson is the Bible.  For God boldly declares that Man – each and every person – is of infinite significance to Him.

* Every person is created by God.  They are “fearfully and wonderfully” knitted together in the womb by the omniscient Hand of Almighty God.

* Every person is created in the very image of God.

* Every person is beloved by God.

* Jesus went willingly to the cross to pay the penalty of sin for every person.  God wants to spend eternity in fellowship with every person He’s ever created.

* Every person is the recipient of the ministry of the Holy Spirit.  The Spirit convicts of sin, righteousness and judgment.  The Spirit testifies of Jesus and makes clear God’s offer of salvation and redemption to every person.

In the light of these divine directives, we too should treat all men, women and children as important. Indeed, we should love all men.  Consider them worthy of honor.  Treat them with kindness and empathy.  Be willing to listen, serve and forgive.  These are all goals (and, we hope, hallmarks) of what Claire and I do in our work with Vital Signs Ministries. Whether it involves our services in behalf of the unborn or the elderly, we seek to underscore the significance of every person. And though we do plenty of things to reach the general public, our hopes of rebuilding a culture of life rests on treating with grace, respect and significance every individual we meet.

Thanks, Dad.

(Alva Hartford died in the summer of 1985, 6 days after sustaining massive injuries when his car was struck by a drunk driver.)

America's Economy Is Imploding But to the Press, It's Just "Sluggish Growth"

Isn't it remarkable how the media is underplaying the disintegration of the American economy? The motives, of course, are political. When gas prices rose during the presidency of George W. Bush, for instance, the press constantly ran stories connecting those rising prices to Bush. But now, even when the gas prices are much higher and even though Barack Obama adamantly refuses to allow new oil exploration and drilling (going so far as being in contempt of court in his refusal to allow drilling), the press will not suggest any link between those soaring gas prices and Obama.

A second case in point is how the networks and old guard publications continue to tell us we are experiencing an economic recovery. Regardless of the horrendous news of growing unemployment, foreclosures, bankruptcies, frightening inflation (especially in grocery and gas prices) and the specter of the ever-escalating national debt, reporters refuse to admit these things represent anything but a slowing of the recovery. An AFP story that headlined Google News yesterday suggested that even the alarming jump in the budget deficit (15.7% in the first 6 months of fiscal year 2011) was merely a speed bump in the road to recovery. Imagine -- a deficit of $829 billion and yet we're promised that "the economic recovery slowly gained pace."

Is it any wonder that thinking people are turning off the networks and canceling newspaper and magazine subscriptions in droves. Because the press isn't merely spinning news anymore. They're in full blown cover-up and denial mode.

Does "The Pill" Kill Post Conception? Planned Parenthood Says "Yes" and "No."

When it suits their purpose, Planned Parenthood admits that "the pill" acts as an abortifacient drug. But when the mega-abortion business is trying to keep the flow of American taxpayers money flowing into their coffers, their leaders will simply tell the opposite story.

Here from Live Action:

Abortion industry cheerleader Gail Collins of the New York Times writes in her latest op-ed backing funding for top US abortion provider Planned Parenthood: "Dr. Vanessa Cullins of Planned Parenthood says that the pills inhibit the production of eggs or stop the sperm before they reach their destination. 'There is absolutely no direct evidence that there is interference with with implantation, she said."

That is interesting because the Guttmacher Institute (named after former Planned Parenthood President Alan Guttmacher) wrote this via the The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists: "Food and Drug Administration–approved contraceptive drugs and devices act to prevent pregnancy in one or more of three major ways: by suppressing ovulation, by preventing fertilization of an egg by a sperm or by inhibiting implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterine lining."

Later it says: "The primary mechanism of action of 'combined' oral contraceptives (those containing both estrogen and a progestin) is the suppression of ovulation. In addition, these pills may interfere with sperm and egg transport, affect the fluids within a woman’s reproductive tract or affect sperm maturation or the readiness of the uterine lining for implantation."

So who is right? Pro-abortion industry Planned Parenthood or pro-abortion industry Guttmacher Institute which published the ACOG information in one of their articles?

Or is the cop-out in Dr. Vanessa Cullins of Planned Parenthood’s statement where she says “no direct evidence” has been found? Could it be that the pill (among other methods) which are clearly designed to inhibit implantation of new human life but have yet to be clinically documented to do so because directly documenting such event is a virtually impossible and impractical task? Whether Cullins’ statement is technically true or not, it is clearly misleading and documents once again the medical misinformation present at Planned Parenthood...

And Planned Parenthood Colorado had this to say about Amendment 48 which would have given to to human life post-fertilization: "Amendment 48 is so broad it could outlaw emergency contraception, the birth control pill and other methods of birth control because they can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus."

The point here is that Planned Parenthood certainly knows what the scientific researchers know; namely, that the so-called birth control pill will act as an abortifacient when breakthrough ovulation occurs. And breakthrough ovulation occurs a lot more than what most people realize. But in their spin efforts, Planned Parenthood will lie about this scientific fact just as easily as they lie about the facts of fetal development, the risks and long-term negatives of abortion, or what's really going on behind their doors.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Today's Posts

Advice About Sterilization, Birth Control, & Family Life

P.A.L. Night on Monday Evening!

Planned Parenthood's Balderdash Banners

The Numbers Aren't Good for Obama. They're Even Worse for the USA.

Christians Imprisoned & Tortured...For Being Christians

Planned Parenthood Breaks Out! What Will You Do About It?

Advice About Sterilization, Birth Control, & Family Life

The following letter was written yesterday to a friend who had asked me about family planning and sterilization. They live in another country and were getting ready to welcome their next child into the world. But they were facing pressures from doctors and others about sterilization and wanted to hear my advice about these matters. I sent the letter this morning by internet and received a quick reply in which he encouraged me to publish the letter for others to read. "Denny, I do think it would be a very valuable counsel to many-many-many people in _________. And in America too. I really appreciate your answer. It is quite authoritative..." So, here it is.

Dear R-------,

Regarding your questions about family planning, let me say at the beginning that making decisions about possible pregnancies certainly should NOT be made when you’re experiencing those last uncomfortable, tense and sometimes agonizing weeks of pregnancy. Such decisions should be made when you can look at things more objectively and without time pressure. So be careful as to when you make such decisions.

Make sure you’ve considered every angle, taken in the wisest counsel, and had plenty of unpressed prayer. Also make sure you’re not making a decision based on someone else’s opinion or timetable. Beware too of doubting God’s sufficiency or His wisdom. Investigate honestly and as thoroughly as you can your motivations. Keep things in the proper perspective – and that means remembering that all aspects of our life must be under His Lordship.

I may be wrong but your questions certainly seem to reveal some doubts about sterilization. For instance, you admit that the “pressure” is coming especially from “secular” doctors. You mention your wife has a “big trouble with it." Be sure and look ahead to what "big troubles" she might have after taking such a permanent action. And you’re honest (and wise) enough to be concerned about testing God as opposed to passing the tests He gives to us – including the challenges of raising a large family.

Remember too, my dear friend, that raising a large family represents a large blessing too. The Scriptures teach (in many places) the honor and pleasure and spiritual rewards that go to parents of children. And beyond your personal blessing, your faithfulness in the ministry of parenthood is a tremendous blessing to the cause of Christ that will keep on reaping rewards long after you guys have left the scene. Yes, I know the Church doesn’t recognize this as it should but there is no ministry on earth as honorable, as visionary and as critical as faithful parenthood. It is the crown of all of your service for the Lord Jesus.

With these things said, let me now say that I do have substantial problems with sterilization, especially those that are performed for a perceived convenience. This conviction is based on the Bible’s teaching about the blessings of children and the sanctity of family life. But I must admit, it’s also due to my life being so enriched by people who happened to come along at number 6, 7, 8, 9 and even 12 in their family!

Also sterilization is such an unnatural act and, as I suggested earlier, oh-so-permanent. I’ve known of so many people who have made decisions of this sort (tubal ligation and vasectomy) and then repented of those decisions later in life – sometimes only months afterward. There are actions of spacing children that are not permanent – and which do not in any way pose a danger of aborting a child conceived through breakthrough ovulation. And alas, every birth control drug and every I.U.D.-type of device does contain at least the potential for acting post-conception. Those are to be strictly avoided by God’s people. (You can read more about this subject at Vital Signs Ministries’ web site.)

In summation then, I encourage you guys to go slow in making the decision and to be unswayed by any ignoble pressures. Keep the Lordship of Christ as your priority. Remember God’s great pleasure in your ministry as godly parents – as well as the marvelous rewards you’ll enjoy for all eternity for a faithful stewardship of that ministry.

And, one more thing, remember the joy and pride and sheer fun all the other kids have brought into your life. Yes, children bring tears and worry, frustration and disappointment too. And if the Lord has other children in your future, they will bring more of the same things. Wonderful highs and anxious lows – such is life on this fallen planet. All we can do is receive with gratitude all He has for us and invest our lives wisely for the rewards of the other side, the forever side of life with God.

I write in humility and love and deep appreciation for you both.


P.A.L. Night on Monday Evening!

Vital Signs Ministries is inviting you to join Denny & Claire and others of our "letter-writing team" at one of VSM's longest-standing advocacy events, the P.A.L. Night. The letters stand for prayer, action and letters and, though we have a wonderful and fun time together, the activity is quite serious as we put our faith in an action we know has very positive results.

Monday's list of concerns includes persecuted Christians, a variety of issues in the culture wars, politics, Planned Parenthood, several thank-yous, and more.

We provide the stamps and stationary, the stamps, a list of the various action targets, contact information, and the key points to communicate. We even provide sample letters so that even those who don't think they could do this thing very well come out swell!

We even provide the coffee, tea, soft drinks and desserts.

So, why not consider joining us for an enjoyable and spiritually productive 90 minutes or so. The P.A.L. Night is at our place in northwest Omaha, conveniently near an interstate exit. Give us a call or zip us an e-mail for more information. We would really love to have you.

Planned Parenthood's Balderdash Banners

The huge banners which adorn Planned Parenthood's new "Abortion and Sexual Promiscuity Enablement Center" [my title for the place, one that is a heckuva lot more honest than theirs] all feature photos of people emblazoned with various captions purporting to tell visitors and passersby just what goes on inside the building.

But not only do those captions fail utterly to describe the main business of Planned Parenthood, most of them are outright lies. Over the next few days (beginning again on Monday), I'll share more comments on those banners. But let's begin with this one...

The caption printed across the photograph of a thirty-something man reads, “Someone you know has a hard time talking to his daughter about um, stuff.”  The obvious implication is that Planned Parenthood is there to help parents effectively communicate with their children about sex. 

But the fact is that Planned Parenthood only wants parental involvement if it leads to a green light for premarital sexual activity.  Both out of 1) ideological conviction (Margaret Sanger’s and Alfred Kinsey’s abhorrent sexual philosophies still dominate here) and 2) out of their undying lust for profits (PP wants more customers for their pills, condoms and eventually for their surgical abortions), the organization is delighted with parents who serve to encourage and enable their teenagers’ promiscuity.

However, if those parents want to send anything but the Planned Parenthood message to their kids, the organization wants them shut up completely.  Indeed, no group in the country has fought as hard and as dirty to keep legislatures from passing parental consent, even parental notification laws than Planned Parenthood.  And no group in the country has done more to marginalize parental involvement in sex education.  Whether it’s doing an end run around parents in school sex ed programs, or training kids to keep sexual activity secret from their parents, or even covering up statutory rape as several recent undercover investigations have revealed among Planned Parenthood offices around the country – the corporation doesn’t really want parents to talk about,  um, stuff at all. Unless they get their stuff from Planned Parenthood.

Again, more commentary on other Planned Parenthood banners next week.

The Numbers Aren't Good for Obama. They're Even Worse for the USA.

As Barack Obama was delivering his speech on the nation’s long-term debt crisis, word came that JP Morgan has radically downgraded its projection of the nation’s short-term prospects for economic growth. Morgan now thinks the economy will grow at an annual rate of 1.4 percent this year. This comes hard on the heels of Macroeconomic Advisers lowering its growth projection for 2011 from 4 percent at the beginning of the year to 1.7 percent today.

These aren’t just horrible numbers for the U.S. economy. They are a potential death knell for Barack Obama’s presidency...

Read more of "Long-Term Debt? How About Short-Term Implosion?" by John Podhoretz over at Commentary.

Christians Imprisoned & Tortured...For Being Christians

Pastor Vahik Abrahamian and his wife Sonia Keshish-Avanesian were with their friends, Arash Kermanjani, and his wife, Arezo Teymouri [photo on right] when all four were detained on September 4, 2010. The two couples, who are close friends, were arrested at the Abrahamians' home in Hamadan, west Iran, and taken initially to the Ministry of Islamic Guidance prison.

For the first 40 days, they were held in solitary confinement and reportedly suffered physical abuse and psychological pressure. Pastor Vahik's wife Sonia, who was pregnant when she was arrested, is said to have suffered a miscarriage – her fourth.

The four have been accused of various offenses, including propagating Christianity, opposing the Islamic Republic of Iran, and having contact with exiled opposition figures. They have not yet been charged.

Over six months have passed since the two men and two women were arrested. They are under pressure and intense interrogation, according to Mohabat News. According to Mohabat, they have been transferred from Hamadan prison to Iran’s notorious Evin prison in Tehran.

Their families are concerned for their health, but have not been able to find news of their loved ones. They are also worried about the children of the believers.

The Prisoner Alert (a ministry of Voice of the Martyrs) is a important source for information, a wonderful help in fueling our prayers and in giving greater effectiveness to our advocacy efforts in their behalf. I encourage you to utilize it often. Along with the couples in the report above, the Prisoner Alert is currently posting profiles of several other persecuted believers including Ilmurad Nurliev (Turkmenistan), Pastor Youcef Nardarkhani (Islamic Republic of Iran), Tohar Haydarov (Uzbekistan), Imran Ghafur (Pakistan), Zhang Huamei (China) and Asia Bibi (Pakistan).

Planned Parenthood Breaks Out! What Will You Do About It?

Planned Parenthood has been doing a little bit of hiding in recent months, afraid of drawing attention to themselves because of the very real possibility that Congress would stop giving them hundreds of millions of dollars in tax money every year. The mega-abortion corporation was also aware of how their brand had been tarnished by public revelations of Planned Parenthood's criminal activity -- covering up statutory rape, aiding in sex trafficking, fraud, misuse of funds. Those things were also keeping the organization lying low.

But when the Republicans in Congress caved in to Barack Obama and the Democrats on the de-funding issue, Planned Parenthood breathed a sigh of relief and decided it was time to leave their hideout. For instance, yesterday Planned Parenthood of the Heartland had an open house party at their new northwest Omaha facility AND they made the announcement that they would be opening six new chemical abortion centers (surgical abortions may be included later) in Nebraska cities: Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Norfolk and North Platte.

Of course, this announcement prompts both tears and prayers from decent folks. But it should also prompt us to greater actions to expose and oppose this wicked organization. I suggest three practical steps.

1) Of immediate and critical relevance is contacting your state senators and letting them know that you strongly urge them to support the pro-life bills now under consideration in the Unicameral. Among the most critical are LB 521 which would prohibit Planned Parenthood's dastardly scheme for web cam abortions and the parental consent bill, LB 690. (More details on each can be found by hitting the designated links.)

2) Pass the word. Planned Parenthood has managed to get away with murder (literally) by keeping the public in the dark about how many preborn babies it kills through both chemical and surgical abortion, about its racist and eugenics origins, about their criminal activity, about the huge sums it gets from the government, about its lies regarding provision of health care, about their profane and perverse literature, and more.

The government has helped Planned Parenthood in this deceit. So has the education establishment, big business, the media, and even groups like United Way and the Girl Scouts. That means the public exposure of this nefarious bunch is going to be up to us.

How? Through conversations over the fence and around the water cooler. (You don't have to bring the topic up every time you talk to people...but bring it up frequently. After all, Planned Parenthood is killing kids every day.) Make announcements at church. Go outside Planned Parenthood abortuarys to pray and peacefully protest. Write letters to editors of newspapers and magazines. Post items on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. Write letters to your political representatives.

Generously support your local pro-life pregnancy centers and groups that are actively working against Planned Parenthood. That latter group includes Nebraska Right to Life, Americans United for Life, Nebraska Family Council, and Vital Signs Ministries. And, of course, increase your prayers that God bless America by making Planned Parenthood the source of shame and scandal it so deserves.

3) To make your conversations and letters the most relevant and effective they can be, make sure and stay in the loop. Reading Vital Signs Blog is one way to do this and so I list below several recent posts dealing with Planned Parenthood for you to review. Take a few notes because this stuff will be dynamite for your conversations and letters. In fact, I'd suggest you bookmark today's post and use its links for reference over the next few months. And you can always keep up by using the Topical Index on the right sidebar. Just hit "Planned Parenthood" and it lists in chronological order every Planned Parenthood-labeled item I've ever posted. But the ones I give below represent a good start.

RU Serious? Stop Planned Parenthood's Dangerous Web Cam Abortion Scheme.

Things Planned Parenthood's 'Truth Team' Forgot to Mention by Susan E. Wills

Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now (from Live Action)

Exposing the Planned Parenthood Business Model by Abby Johnson

Planned Parenthood's Mammogram Mantra Is Another Lie

Planned Parenthood: Where Are the Missing Millions of Our Tax Dollars?
 Remember Planned Parenthood's Violent Superhero?

Planned Parenthood Fights for Funding...With a Sex Party?

Abortion Rights Leader Is Target of Criminal Probe

Planned Parenthood Tries To Spin Its Way Out Of Scandal

Yet Another Planned Parenthood Caught!

The Next Nickel Drops: Planned Parenthood Caught Covering Up Crime Again!

Planned Parenthood Insists: You Must Do Abortions!

Judge's Ruling: Planned Parenthood Guilty of Illegal Abortion on a 14-Yr Old

I could go on and on. But remember, you can too by using the Topical Index feature. The important thing is use these posts to fire up your prayers, your conversations and your letters. Let's not let our lives go by without doing what we can to oppose this evil organization.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Today's Posts

G.O.P. Leaders Bite the Apple, Not the Bullet

Has Madonna Kicked Kabbalah?

Kay Orr Asks for Your Help in Passing a Parental Consent Law

RU Serious? Stop Planned Parenthood's Dangerous Web Cam Abortion Scheme.

Rob Bell's Doubts & Distortions Hailed by TIME Magazine

Obama Stoops to New Lows

Woe to Those Who Do Evil, Who Justify Evil,...and Who Just Ignore Evil

G.O.P. Leaders Bite the Apple, Not the Bullet

Genuine conservatives suspected that there might have been more to the Republican cave-in last week and, despite the G.O.P. establishment's best efforts to present the showdown deal as a win, details are emerging that prove otherwise.

For instance, not only did the Republicans renege on their promises to de-fund Planned Parenthood, thus angering one of their most foundational core groups, the budget cuts turned out to be much less than what was claimed. Of course, even what was touted is far, far less than what is needed. But the the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office issued a report late Wednesday explaining that of that vaunted $38 billion figure, a mere $352 million in non-emergency spending cuts will be enacted this year.

No surprise then that former Minnesota governor and presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty said today that the deal “should be rejected.” He added, “The more we learn about the budget deal, the worse it looks. When you consider that the federal deficit in February alone was over $222 billion, to have actual cuts less than the $38 billion originally advertised is just not serious.”

Majority Leader Eric Cantor is repeating the standard defense for the Republican leadership. “This is a deal the Speaker struck. It was the best deal he could strike given the fact he was dealing with the White House and the Senate. What I can say is our members understand that what we’ve done is begin taking a first bite of the apple of dealing with the spending and debt crisis.”

Bad metaphor, Congressman. Instead of biting the apple, you should have urged your colleagues to bite the bullet and make those drastic cuts necessary to rein in the ominous and wildly out-of-control government spending.

Biting the apple was Adam's mistake, an example of yielding to temptation and really lousy advice.

Has Madonna Kicked Kabbalah?

The Daily Mirror is reporting that Madonna Louise Ciccone, better known by her first name alone, has got an itch for a new religion. Well, since she was raised Catholic and is now investigating Opus Dei, the Catholic group that stresses the sanctity and blessings available in ordinary life, maybe it's an investigation of her old religion.

At any rate, it seems she's tired of following the mystic variances of  Kabbalah.

Of course, Madonna may be most intrigued by the secrecy surrounding Opus Dei. It was, after all, the group whose controversial nature was expanded (and distorted) by the inane plot of The Da Vinci Code. And it was the secrecy and mystery -- along with what she felt was a lack of moral restrictions -- that attracted her to Kabbalah as well.

But in Opus Dei she won't find any such freedom from moral duties. And that might mean she will quickly move on to something else. But then again, it may indicate that Madonna is finally searching for real answers about God, about herself, and about her soul's desperate need of salvation.

As a sinner with an ugly past myself, yet a sinner saved by the mercy of God poured out by the blood of Jesus for my atonement, I rejoice that salvation is freely offered to all. And so this report, despite its origin in a British tabloid and despite what I know about the singer's past blasphemies against God, is one that will elicit new prayers for Madonna. Lord, may her new search reveal to her that You have been challenging her all along to come to the cross of Christ. For by simple faith in what He accomplished on that cross, even the "Material Girl" can find spiritual peace, purpose and full forgiveness.