Month Archives: February 2011

Arabic in Texas Schools?

by Chris Gacek

February 8, 2011

Well, just when you thought you had heard it all comes word see the news story from Mansfield, Texas, a city located in the Dallas-Fort Worth area that students at four local intermediate schools will be taught Arabic. The students at two schools will be required to take Arabic whereas it will be optional for the students at the other two.

Mansfields school district successfully applied for a federal Department of Education (DoE) Foreign Language Assistance Program (FLAP) Grant. DoE identified Arabic as a language of the future. From some internet searching I was able to determine that Spanish, Chinese, and French are three other such languages. According to the news story only a handful of FLAP grants were awarded last year.

School officials said that the federal grant “provides culture, government, art, traditions and history as part of the curriculum.” Given the tight integration of Islams religious tenets into every facet of Arab life that may be easier said than done. Furthermore, the breadth of this part of curriculum could easily be distorted. What will the courses teach about shariah law, for example?

What seems particularly obnoxious here is that the students of two schools will be REQUIRED to take Arabic which is a pretty exotic language choice aside from the political implications after 9-11. Having an extra option could be fine, but a mandate might interfere with the plans of the child who can only take one language and wanted to study French, for example.

That said there may not be a constitutional problem here. Clearly, schools can require a student to take foreign language classes. But can it only require one choice? And, can it require the students to take a language whose accompanying culture may be deemed hostile to American values by some of the students or their parents? A parallel case might be if Mansfields schools had required students to take Russian in 1980 during the height of the Cold War.

It has been clear in our constitutional law since the 1920s that a State cannot forbid foreign language instruction (Meyer v. Nebraska (1923)), but this is a different question.

These days there are objectionable sex ed curricula that parents dont seem to have a constitutional right to keep away from their children. So, it may be that parents in Mansfield may have to change the school policy at the ballot box when they elect their school board.

What we dont know from the story is why the Mansfield chose Arabic and not Spanish or Chinese if a more exotic language were desired. China is certainly going to be a greater economic power in the future. Does this school district have a large Arabic-speaking population? If so, the decision would then seem to be more like a form of political correctness and an attempt to force a foreign culture on American families.

A prediction: Arabic will soon become only optional in the two schools for which it is now being mandated.

Drudge just posted red flash text that the school district is backing off the Arabic requirement. No news story though.

Race and Liberty in America, Jonathan Bean

by Kyle Forti

February 7, 2011

Jonathan Beans Race and Liberty in America addresses the role race has played in the history of the United States. It develops the conjunction of race and ideas of liberty by compiling a diverse survey of pieces from Americas earliest days to the present. Bean takes advantage of the perch that the year 2011 offers and allows history to speak for itself as these issues were (and most currently are) queried. As a result, this is a book likely to appeal to a wide audience as has already been evidenced by the praise it has received from critics on both sides of the isle.

From page one, Bean leaves very little doubt that Race and Liberty in America is not a partisan book, nor one advocating a conservative or liberal ideology. Rather, his thesis and emphasis is to track the classical liberal tradition and its response to slavery and other race issues by offering an excerpt from each period in American history. To do this, Bean fills each chapter by citing journalists and authors, pastors and activists, political leaders and businessman. He scopes-out the structure of the early anti-slavery movement, on into the Republican Era, through color consciousness, the Roosevelt years, and classical liberalisms involvement in the Civil Rights Era.

As Bean prefaces most of these historical markers, he weaves in the definitive ways in which the American idea of liberty so affected the outcome of racial tensions in every season of note. The last part of the book takes the observations of the past and then turns to the role race and liberty will, in coming years, follow in the United States.

Ultimately Race and Liberty in America provides insight into what was central to the progress made by the classical liberal tradition and its critique of slavery and race in recent history. Bean effectively ties together the chronological flow of history and parallel flow of ideas that went along with it. It is because of this approach that Bean is able to thoroughly identify and investigate those concepts that played the most significant role in streamlining race and liberty in America: individual freedom, Christianity and Judaism, the Constitution, colorblindness, and capitalism.

Bean seeks to move beyond placing trust in political parties for the answers to the questions that yet remain, but rather encouraging citizens to once again seek out the basic questions for themselves: What is race? Why should government define race as it chooses? Why are immigrants available for other benefits not with other citizens? Why is government involved in the race business at all?

Bean poses these challenging questions as well as sobering, provocative statements: If race is a fiction, then it is a fiction worth disposing of because it has done far more harm than good. Race and Liberty in America maintains distance from the distractions of todays political debate by providing a comprehensive framework on the issues of race and American liberty in which to properly gain knowledge and move forward.

Celebrating Ronald Reagan’s Birthday

by Krystle Gabele

February 7, 2011

Check out an op-ed that was written by FRC’s Bob Morrison that appeared on American Thinker.

President Reagan spoke of the unborn in his Inaugural Addresses. He appealed for their lives in his State of the Union Addresses. These are the most august ceremonies in this Great Republic. By bringing the fate of unborn children into those state occasions, he said he knew and he cared. He said we must all know and must all care. He would not be silent about what he called “the slaughter of innocents.”

Skin Gun Sprays Healing Adult Stem Cells

by David Prentice

February 7, 2011

A team at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine have continued in their development of a “skin gun” that sprays a patient’s adult stem cells onto a burn, resulting in quicker, more effective healing.

This astounding video gives some idea of the effectiveness of the spray-on adult stem cell technique.

Dr. Gerlach’s team has been instrumental in developing the technique of using sprayed suspensions of adult stem cells to treat surface wounds and burns.

Bringing Abortion into the Light

by Family Research Council

February 4, 2011

Today at Time’s Healthand blog Bonnie Rochman profoundly misses the mark on the crux of the PA Abortion Clinic Tragedy in her article “Philly Abortion Horrors: What Matters is How and Not When an Abortion is Done, Says Expert“. In short, Rochman diagnoses the real problem in the Gosnell story as a matter of “bad technique.”

Let’s be clear about what Rochman is describing as an issue of technique: Gosnell delivered born-alive babies and then proceeded to slit their necks, thereby severing the spinal chord, or, in at least one case, simply slitting the throat of the newly born baby.

As awful as this “technique” sounds, the truth is that because abortion is a procedure that takes something healthy (i.e., a living baby) and very deeply inside a woman out in an unnatural way, its is ALWAYS invasive and difficult. This is in part why so many women suffer post traumatic syndrome following an abortion.

Consider the most popular abortion procedures: a D & C vacuums out baby parts with an instrument 29 times as powerful as a household vacuum. A D & E involves the doctor tearing parts of the baby and pulling them out of the woman with forceps. The abortion pill, RU486, starves a developing baby of protein it needs to survive its first ten weeks of development.

The truth is that all abortion is “bad technique” because it is violent and deeply invasive and unnatural. The Philadelphia story simply brings the dark reality of abortion into the light.

The Social Conservative Review: February 3, 2011

by Krystle Gabele

February 4, 2011

Sign up today to subscribe to The Social Conservative Review: The Insider’s Guide to Pro-Family News.


Dear Friend,

This week, FRC played a pivotal role in a federal judge’s ruling that the Obama health care law is unconstitutional. FRC’s Special Counsel and Director of our Center for Religious Liberty, Ken Klukowski, drafted an amicus brief cited by Federal Judge Roger Vinson in his ruling. The Judge said he relied “heavily” on Klukowski’s carefully-reasoned argument that the Obama measure’s mandate that all Americans hold health insurance cannot be severed from the rest of the Obama plan — and that, thus, the entire law has to be jettisoned. Read more here.

Also, Tom McClusky, FRC Action’s talented Senior Vice President, has provided this valuable summary of key congressional pro-life legislation. As the new Congress moves forward, urge your elected representatives here in Washington to support these important measures.

Sincerely,

Rob Schwarzwalder

P.S. On February 6, America will celebrate the 100th birthday of one of her greatest sons — Ronald Reagan. To read President Reagan’s speech to the National Association of Evangelicals about the moral foundations of his historic fight against Communism, click here. Also, visit the Reagan Library site for a bracing review of the life of this remarkable, heroic American.


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FRC’s friends at the Independent Institute have developed a ‘Government Cost Calculator.’ Created by economist Craig Eyerman, the calculator is a bracing reminder that government is just too big and costs far too much.

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Health care reform: Political and Legislative efforts

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Natural Law, Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism” is a new project by scholars associated with the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University.” Dr. Robert George, an FRC Board member, directs the Madison Program. This important new Web site provides important information about the philosophical foundation of the American Founding — a foundation as important today as it was at America’s beginning. Learn more about this new initiative by clicking here.

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Are We Waiving Away Honest Government with Obamacare?

by Chris Gacek

February 2, 2011

Of course, the BIG news regarding Obamacare is that another federal district court struck down the law in its entirety on Monday. That said, some extremely informative Obamacare details were made known in a Washington Times op-ed published on Monday. Dr. Milton R. Wolfs commentary piece made clear that rampant administrative favoritism is becoming the hallmark of the manner in which this massive medical program is being run. The prime piece of evidence is the mind-numbing total of waivers that are being issued for Obamacare. Wolfs totals are staggering:

Last year, we learned that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had granted 111 waivers to protect a lucky few from the onerous regulations of the new national health care overhaul. That number quickly and quietly climbed to 222, and last week we learned that the number of Obamacare privileged escapes has skyrocketed to 733.

Among the fortunate is a whos who list of unions, businesses and even several cities and four states (Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio and Tennessee) but none of the friends of Barack feature as prominently as the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). (Emphasis added.)

Given the sums of money that can be involved by obtaining a waiver, this sort of selective administration of the law invites corruption. Are waiver recipients expected to make political contributions to certain candidates and parties? Wink-wink.

At what point does such the selective application of the law create constitutional avenues for litigation by the poor slobs who get stuck paying for this monstrosity.

Clearly, Congress needs to investigate this in fine detail. Congress should compel the waiver recipients to produce all records of any communications they have had with persons in the executive branch with whom the waiver topic was broached. Given the number of waivers this will be a daunting task, but it needs to be done to maintain the rule of law in the United States.

Planned Barrenhoods Partners in Crime - Lila Rose Catches Them

by Robert Morrison

February 2, 2011

Every pro-life citizen in the country needs to share Lila Roses video with a friend. Each one teach one. (I know, I know, that was Fidel Castros literacy slogan. But in this case, it fits.) Lila Roses bold and brave video is a devastating venture in undercover journalism. She was recently awarded a Life Prize Lila Rose richly deserves it. She also deserves a Pulitzer Prize. Dont hold your breath.

This fearless young woman took on the evil enterprise of Planned ParenthoodPlanned Barrenhood Virginia Del. Bob Marshall so rightly calls it.

A strongly pro-life young mother who had served as a top aide to Majority Leader Dick Armey in the ‘90s recently explained to a student group why those Republican Congresses never de-funded Title X, one of the legislative cash cows for Planned Barrenhood. She said: The Republican conference thinks that Planned Parenthood is all about family planning, you know…

Lila Roses powerful expose shows that this is a criminal outfit that has nothing to do with planning families and everything to do with destroying them. The office administrator captured on film casually announces her willingness to cover up statutory rape, child prostitution, and, of course, her eagerness to serve as a conduit for Planned Barrenhoods real businessabortion.

Note the blue pantsuit the office administrator is wearing. Is that some kind of uniform?

Thirty years ago, I interviewed the head of Planned Parenthood in Washington State. I was then a graduate student researching my masters thesis about the 1970 referendum that legalized abortion the Evergreen State.

I called repeatedly to get my interview with Lee Minto, the Executive Director of Planned Parenthood. I tried to get her to meet me at a Seattle coffee shop. She kept saying no, come into my office. And she began to get suspicious.

I knew Lee Mintos office was in that hellish place where unborn children are killed. I knew if I walked in there and saw a young mother about to make a fateful choice, I would have to appeal to her for the life of her child. But then, I knew, I would be arrested, and my two-years of work on my masters thesis would be lost. I prayed.

As I arrived on that overcast, gloomy day, I noted that the Planned Parenthood facility was located in Seattles Central District, where many of Washingtons black families then lived. Lee Mintos abortion mill

was a converted super market. Didnt the folks in that community need a super market more than they needed this death tophet?

My heart pounded as I prepared to enter. Suddenly, I looked up at a nearby church steeple. A shaft of sunlight broke through the cloud cover and shone on a golden cross.

Strengthened, I went inside. No one was there except the receptionist who quickly ushered me in to Lee Mintos office. I was expecting some svelte, well-coiffed, professional. Instead, I found a blowsy woman in a blue pant suit whose seams screamed for mercy.

Her office was a mess. Papers and used coffee cups were everywhere.

A peeling poster on the wall depicted Pope Paul VIalready dead three years at this pointwith a stern visage saying: Im-a no like-a dat pill! Apparently, Lee Minto hadnt gotten the memo on ethnic stereotyping.

She proceeded to brag how she and her gang had pulled one on the voters in the referendum a decade earlier. Once, a young military wife from nearby Fort Lewis had gotten drunk at a party and got pregnant. Her husband was serving in Vietnam. Minto was proud of the fact that the law she got approved didnt use the legal term, domicile, to describe the husbands permanent home of record. In an effort to get voters to okay abortion, they had to include husbands consentif he resided with his wife.

Just like the partner in crime in Lila Roses video, Lee Minto was delighted to tell me that that military wife got her abortion because she was not residing with her husband.

She also told me how a single illegal abortionist had contributed 20% of the budget of the pro-abortion forces for the Washington State referendum.

Then, just as I was about to leave, Lee Minto turned her back on me and bent over a box of files on the floor. Like a badger, she rummaged through it to bring out a single yellowed sheet of paper.

It was a telegram from Harriett Pilpel, Planned Parenthoods top lawyer in New York, and a frequent sparring partner of Bill Buckleys on television. Hosanna! How wonderful for you and for all of us, the telegram read. Lee Minto offered it to me. I was truly tempted to take it as a trophy of my own undercover work.

Minto mooned me. A big blue moon. I almost burst out laughing. Aleksander Solzhenitsyn famously wrote that he didnt want revenge on those who killed millions in the Gulag. He only wanted to see them thrown in that slave labor system for one dayand to see their big fat bottoms as they tried to hide under their camp cots.

God had granted me Solzhenitsyns revenge. That image is with me now as I see Lila Roses blue pant-suited perp happily indicting herself on film, captured forever as the crooked, sleazy operator she is. And Lee Minto was.

Hosanna! It means God save us. Could Pilpel and Minto really believe God would save them in their death dealing? I can look at Lila Roses heroic work and say; Hallelujah! God be praised.

To the Republicans who have been given what Marco Rubio calls a second chance, how can you tax us for this? De-fund Planned Barrenhood!

Just How Much Help Do Businesses Need from Uncle Sam?

by Rob Schwarzwalder

February 1, 2011

So, now we have the President’s new “Startup America” campaign, which is designed to foster small business growth and job creation. We also have Business.usa.gov, which is a one-stop shop for “small business resources and geographic data.” This, of course, is distinct from SBA.gov, which helps small businesses “find local resources, explore programs and services, and achieve your business goals.” Which is different than the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization; the Department of Labor has an office of the same name, too, just to be clear —- and also than Commerce’s International Trade Administration’s Sustainable Manufacturing Initiative’s Sustainable Business Clearinghouse and Commerce’s Grants, Contracting, and Trade Opportunities initiative. Small businesses can also get help from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Small Business Mentor-Protege Program and Small Business Program Manual, where among other things we learn that “small businesses are important to the United States.” And, of course, there are HHS’s Small Business Program, its Small Disadvantaged Business Program, its HUBZone Program, its Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Program, its various Outreach Activities, its Vendor Outreach Session and its Small Business Competitive Demonstration Program.

There are more such programs, sprinkled throughout the federal government like coriander seeds in a large muffin. Unconsolidated, confusing, arguably unconstitutional, costly, and a tribute to government’s well-intended eagerness to do what it was never intended to do: Interfere with market-based job creation.

A rational tax and regulatory regime, combined with expanded child and R&D tax credits and an end to the estate, or “death,” tax, would enable smaller firms to thrive more effectively. Policies that strengthen families (again, breaks for children, adoption, and charitable donations) and encourage growth instead of penalizing it aren’t a bad idea, either.

Mr. Obama and his Administration can try to foster the risk-taking, innovation and opportunity they rightfully believe are necessary to create jobs through yet more government-based programs. But they cannot create the dynamism of the open market from a bureaucratic, administrative, procedural and regulatory state. It is to the benign wisdom of that state, versus the clear-minded energy of the American people, that Mr. Obama and his aides have pledged their troth. And that’s why this latest iteration of “I’m from Washington and I want to help you” just won’t work.

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