Concerning religious trends and surveys—especially among younger Evangelicals—continue to serve as doleful reminders that aggrieved outrage and resentful rebellion is en vogue, while faithful Christian discipleship is out of style.
It is undeniable that Evangelicals are drifting further away from the traditional Christian teachings cherished and defended by our parents and grandparents. According to a 2008 Pew Research study, Baptists have experienced the greatest net loss of childhood members within the Protestant tradition with a childhood and current religion net change of -3.7. The Catholic Church is the only other Christian tradition with a greater loss, with a net change of -7.5 in children abandoning their faith.
Numbers are important, but stories behind the data are more telling. As a Sunday school teacher, I see this young Evangelical resentment and desertion in action. Of course, the easy part of my teaching responsibilities is sharing the Gospel with middle school-aged students. The hard, heart-breaking part comes later, when I ask my students if they will make a confession of faith in Jesus Christ and their answer is, "I'm still searching." more >>
With the nation's first presidential primary result, the Iowa Caucus, about a year away, supporters of potential Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson have already established firm ties and support among Iowa Caucus-goers and have begun orchestrating a full-fledge grassroots campaign effort that will span across all 99 counties in Iowa.
Should Carson decide to run, he will already have a steady grassroots campain to rely on in the nation's first primary state, all thanks to an unaffiliated political action committee. The National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee announced on Tuesday that it has named 136 chairmen to their PAC that will cover every Iowa county. The chairmen will campaign for more individuals to support the 63-year-old retired neurosurgeon and best-selling author at Iowa's Republican caucus in January of 2016.
Carson seems to already have decent support in parts of Iowa, having already won a Polk County, Iowa straw poll in August and placing second in the recent Bloomberg/Des Moines Register presedential poll of likely caucus-goers. Carson also placed second at the Values Voters Summit straw poll of social conservatives. more >>
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 >>
With less than two weeks to go until Election Day, the picture in several key races remains hazy. But when the dust settles, the most likely result is a Republican majority, as the Crystal Ball's outlook of Republicans adding five to eight seats has long indicated.
The GOP needs at least a net gain of six seats to win back Congress' upper chamber. But the math is complicated by Sen. Pat Roberts' (R) struggles in Kansas against independent Greg Orman, and even if Roberts wins, the GOP may not get to 51 seats until after Dec. 6 (Louisiana's runoff) or even Jan. 6, 2015 (Georgia's runoff), making it difficult to actually call the Senate for Republicans even this close to Nov. 4.
A rundown of the arithmetic at this point: The GOP looks certain to win Democratic-controlled seats in Montana and West Virginia, both of which we rate as Safe Republican. While ex-Gov. Mike Rounds (R) hasn't had an easy go of it in South Dakota — thus our Leans Republican rating there — he is still in a decent position to beat Rick Weiland (D) and independent ex-Republican Sen. Larry Pressler in a three-way race. A win in the Mount Rushmore State would give the GOP three pickups. more >>
A free speech courage award should go to U.S. District Judge Rudolph Randa for his recent ruling blocking the enforcement of part of Wisconsin's campaign finance law that prohibits "coordinated issue advocacy" between outside groups and candidates. Liberal, overzealous Badger State prosecutors have tried to use a very subjective interpretation of the law as justification for their four-year, failed witch hunt to try and bring down Governor Scott Walker and his allies.
Earlier this year, the same Judge Randa ordered a shut-down of the nefarious so-called "John Doe" investigation – a secret probe launched in 2012 by partisan Democrat District Attorney John Chisholm against 29 conservative groups for allegedly "coordinating" with political candidates during the 2011 and 2012 Wisconsin recall elections. The investigation, in which witnesses were sworn to secrecy, was carried out in KGB-style fashion, including pre-dawn raids on the private residences of stunned citizens who had their computers and other possessions confiscated.
In January, Wisconsin Judge Gregory A. Peterson terminated many of the subpoenas for these raids because they "fail[ed] to show probable cause that a crime was committed." In his ruling shutting down the probe, Randa stated that "plaintiffs have been shut out of the political process merely by association with conservative politicians. This cannot square with the First Amendment and what it was meant to protect." 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 >>