While Houston's lesbian Mayor Annise Parker and her City Council pals subpoena and obsess over Christian ministers' sermons, she ignores incomparable and immanent threats to Americans posed by Islamists in Houston.
Houston's First Amendment squabble is, as Texans say, "peanuts," compared to actual ongoing violations of Article III Section 3.
To put the enormity of Houston's crisis into context, the nation's fourth largest city is a primary arrival and distribution center for illicit drug smuggling. The billion dollar trade of cocaine, heroin, marijuana, oxycodone and methamphetamine has profoundly increased Houston's violent crime rate, which for years has more than doubled the national average. more >>
Conservative groups are organizing an event on the first Sunday in November to support the five Houston pastors whose sermons were subpoenaed by city officials. Known as "I Stand Sunday," the event will feature former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Southern Baptist Convention President Ronnie Floyd, Alan and Phil Robertson of "Duck Dynasty" fame, and local clergy.
In a conference call held Wednesday afternoon, FRC President Tony Perkins stressed the importance of spreading awareness of what he describes as "political intimidation" tactics coming from Houston city officials.
"This is not about speeches, not about sermons, not about teachings even on biblical morality as to homosexuality, it is about intimidation," said Perkins. "This is about political intimidation and it is about the mayor using the bully pulpit to try and silence the pulpits of Houston." more >>
Editor's Note: This is part two of a two-part series on global warming and creation care written in a point-counterpoint format. Part one can be read here.
In "Climate Change, Creation Care, and the Cosmic Glue," Paul de Vries sets forth excellent principles for Christian care of creation:The earth was good when God made it, and "When we humans have messed up some aspects of God's creation, we should seek to restore them." People should be stewards of God's earth, and dominion granted in Genesis 1:28 does not mean abuse but "'improving and protecting' nature." We are to love our neighbors as ourselves, including by how we treat the earth and its resources. Jesus Christ "dwells in his creation, sustaining everything that exists," and we should "serve our Creator and take some responsibility to free his creation from its being so badly 'subjected to futility' (Romans 8:20, partly through pollution) and its being in 'bondage to decay' (Romans 8:21, partly through depletion of natural resources."
With these every thoughtful Christian should agree. more >>
Within the last few weeks, we have seen a lot of commentary on Bart Campolo, a former United Methodist youth pastor and son of famous liberal evangelical speaker and author Tony Campolo, leaving Christianity to become a devotee of "secular humanism." Before his "deconversion," Bart became semi-famous in his own right in some Christian circles, among other things founding the Mission Year young-adult service organization.
Ed Stetzer wrote a thoughtful piece for Christianity Today on how evangelical Christians can react in a constructive and loving way. Another wayward son of a famous evangelical, the ever-nuanced Franky Schaeffer, responded by blasting that centrist evangelical magazine as "the disgusting reactionaries of Bob Jones ilk, just dressed better" and Stetzer as a "smarmy prick."
My interest here is neither in second-guessing the senior Campolos' parenting nor in determining if their son was, according to Christ's parable of the sower, a "path person," a "rocky soil person" or a "thornbush person." more >>
Pakistan is a perennial recipient of billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars. It's an occasional ally/frequent enemy, sometimes actively conspiring against U.S. interests, sometimes actually firing on U.S. troops (incidents so notorious they now have their own Wikipedia page), and — of course — it's the home of increasingly virulent jihadist extremism. And, no, this extremism isn't confined to the fringes of Pakistani society but is sometimes even manifested in its appellate courts.
Last week, a Pakistani court of appeals upheld Asia Bibi's death sentence for blasphemy. She's a Christian and a mother of five.
Death. For allegedly saying bad things about Mohammed. more >>
Tavis Smiley raised a lot of eyebrows this weekend when he spoke on ABC-TV's "This Week" news show, hosted by George Stephanopoulos. Smiley pointed to double-digit unemployment in the Black community under President Obama and said: "If you're Black or Brown, other than saving the Democrats' hide, what inspires you to go out and vote?"
Economic empowerment for minority families is surely a vital issue, a hardy perennial in off-year elections. But it's not the only issue. Minority voters have always been concerned with Civil Rights. And this year is no exception.
In Houston, Texas, we have seen a bizarre twist on traditional Civil Rights play out. The Mayor of Houston, Annise Parker, has been waging an uncivil war on people who oppose the far-reaching homosexual rights ordinance she powered through the City Council. That ordinance was widely criticized by Houston lay people and pastors, It would endanger protected Civil Rights already covered by the First Amendment, i.e., freedom of religion, critics of Mayor Parker's ordinance said. more >>