Friday, December 27, 2019

The Galli Poppycock of Christianity Today

John R. Houk
© December 27, 2019

Christianity Today’s Editor calls for President Trump’s removal from Office not based on crimes (because no one can actually name a broken law), but rather for past moral grievances. HMMM… I wonder if that means Dem crimes are just fine to commit or past Dem President moral failures should be ascribed to current Dem policies? Christianity Today’s Editor should be more cognizant President Trump’s actions supporting the Christian Faith Today and the future more than the President’s past. Christ came, died and Resurrected to Life to offer forgiveness to the Lost and judgment for those who refuse the Risen Savior at the Last Judgment.

President Trump’s - what have you done for Christ lately? – is working much better than any past indiscretions.

Pro-Life assessment from Fr. Mark Hodges (11/16/17 6:56 pm EST):

‘“The Donald” is the most pro-life, pro-marriage, and pro-family president in the history of the republic.’

White House Fact Sheet issued 2/8/18:

STANDING UP FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM: In his first year in office, President Trump has taken strong action to restore the foundational link between freedom and faith in the United States of America.

§  On May 4, 2017, the President signed an executive order to greatly enhance religious freedom and freedom of speech:

o   taking action to ensure that religious institutions may freely exercise their First Amendment right to support and advocate for candidates and causes in line with their values; and

o   ensuring that religious Americans and their organizations, such as the Little Sisters of the Poor, would not be forced to choose between violating their religious beliefs by complying with Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate or shutting their doors.

§  The President has announced a reversal of the Obama administration’s policy denying disaster aid to houses of worship, allowing houses of worship to receive crucial aid in times of crisis.

§  The Trump administration has taken a stand on behalf of religious liberty in the courts:

o   supported students declared ineligible for a scholarship because they attended a religious school;

o   supported the Archdiocese of Washington in its effort to buy ads for the holidays on public transportation; and

o   supported baker Jack Phillips’s right to operate his bakery in accordance with his religious beliefs.

§  In January 2018, the Trump administration took a stand for international religious freedom by placing Pakistan on a “Special Watch List” for severe violations of religious freedom and designated 10 others as countries of particular concern.

§  The President declared January 18, 2018 to be Religious Freedom Day to “celebrate the many faiths that make up our country.”

PRIORITIZING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN THE ADMINISTRATION: President Trump has issued new policies to ensure religious freedom is a priority throughout the Federal Government.

§  In October 2017, the Department of Justice issued twenty principles of religious liberty to guide the Administration’s litigation strategy to protect religious freedom.

§  In January 2018, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced three major policy changes to protect freedom of religion:

o   forming a new Conscience and Religious Freedom Division, providing HHS with the focus it needs to more vigorously and effectively enforce existing laws protecting the rights of conscience and religious freedom; and

o   proposing to more vigorously enforce 25 existing statutory conscience protections for Americans involved in HHS programs, protecting Americans who have religious or moral convictions related to certain health care services.

PRESERVING THE SANCTITY OF LIFE: President Trump has stopped the attack on pro-life policies, implementing policies to enshrine sanctity of life as an American value.

§  Within a week of taking office, President Trump reinstated and expanded the Mexico City Policy, which protects $9 billion in foreign aid from being used to fund the global abortion industry and its advocates.

§  President Trump cut off taxpayer funding for the U.N. Population Fund.

§  President Trump signed H.J. Res. 43 into law, overturning a midnight regulation by the Obama Administration, which prohibited States from defunding certain abortion facilities in their Federally funded family planning programs.

§  President Trump expressed strong support for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would have stopped late-term abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy—the point at which science tells us that an unborn child can experience pain.

§  President Trump’s Administration issued guidance to enforce the requirement that taxpayer dollars not support abortion coverage in Obamacare exchange plans.

§  President Trump rescinded an Obama-era policy that hindered States in their efforts to direct Medicaid funding away from abortion facilities that violate the law or fail to meet relevant standards of care.

BRINGING RELIGIOUS GROUPS BACK INTO THE FOLD: President Trump has made a consistent effort to reach out to religious groups and partners to bring them back into the policy making process.

§  On February 2, 2017, just two weeks into his first term in office, President Trump spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast.

§  On June 8, 2017, President Trump spoke at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s Road to Majority Conference.

§  On October 13, 2017, President Trump spoke at the Value Voters Summit.

§  On January 19, 2018, President Trump became the first President to address the March for Life rally live via satellite.

o   Vice President Mike Pence addressed the March for Life in 2017, becoming the first sitting Vice President to do so in person.

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: The United States is founded on the principle that our rights do not come from government, they come from God. This immortal truth is proclaimed in our Declaration of Independence and enshrined in the First Amendment to our Constitution's Bill of Rights. Our founders understood that no right is more fundamental to a peaceful, prosperous and virtuous society than the right to follow one's religious convictions.

Regrettably the religious freedom enjoyed by American citizens is rare in the world. Approximately 80% of the world's population live in countries where religious liberty is threatened, restricted or even banned and when I heard the number I said please go back and check it because it can't possibly be correct and sadly it was, 80%.

As we speak Jews, Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus (INAUDIBLE) and many other people of faith are being jailed, sanctioned, tortured, and even murdered often at the hands of their own government simply for expressing their deeply held religious beliefs, so hard to believe. Today with one clear voice the United States of America calls upon the nations of the world to end religious persecution—

--to stop the crimes against people of faith, release prisoners of conscience, repeal laws restricting freedom of religion and belief, protect the vulnerable, the defenseless and the oppressed. America stands with believers in every country who ask only for the freedom to live according to the faith that is within their own hearts. As president protecting religious freedom is one of my highest priorities and always has been.

It is estimated that 11 Christians are killed every day for the following--I mean just think of this 11 Christians a day for following the teachings of Christ. Who would even think that's possible in this day and age? Who would think it's possible? [Blog Editor: The President didn’t indicate but it is true to point out most of those 11 Christian daily deaths occur in Muslim dominated lands.]

AND I am not listing here for time sake, BUT you should take a look at Conservapedia’s self-described “non-exhaustive list” on Christian Liberty and moral values that includes a quote correct disdain for the LGBTQ value system stretching from 2017 – 2019 as of this posting last updated 12/26/19 21:27.

AS FAR AS I AM CONCERNED Christianity Today’s Editor Mark Galli pro-impeachment editorial is full of Dem Party Propaganda Poppycock talking points ignoring the essence of Jesus the Messiah’s message of Redemption for today that forgives yesterday. Prager U’s Dennis Prager (who is Jewish acting more Christian) has some decent criticism for Mr. Galli.

JRH 12/27/19
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A Response to the Editor of Christianity Today

The magazine's amoral view says more about its editor than about Trump.

By Dennis Prager
December 27, 2019

The editor-in-chief of Christianity Today, Mark Galli, wrote an editorial calling for the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

In my view, this editorial only serves to confirm one of the sadder realizations of my life: that religious conviction guarantees neither moral clarity nor common sense.

The gist of the editorial — and of most religious and conservative opposition to President Trump — is that any good the president has done is dwarfed by his character defects.

This is an amoral view that says more about Galli than it does about the president. He and the people who share his opinion are making the following statement: No matter how much good this president does, it is less important than his character flaws.

Why is this wrong?

First, because it devalues policies that benefit millions of people.

And second, because it is a simplistic view of character.

I do not know how to assess a person's character — including my own — outside of how one's actions affect others. Since I agree with almost all of President Trump's actions as president and believe they have positively affected millions of people, I have to conclude that as president, Trump thus far has been a man of particularly good character.

Of course, if you think his policies have harmed millions of people, you will assess his character negatively. But that is not what never-Trump conservatives or Christians such as the Christianity Today editor-in-chief argue. They argue that his policies have indeed helped America (and even the world), but this fact is far less significant than his character.

In the words of Galli: "(I)t's time to call a spade a spade, to say that no matter how many hands we win in this political poker game, we are playing with a stacked deck of gross immorality and ethical incompetence."

This rhetorical sleight of hand reflects poorly on Galli's intellectual and moral honesty.

Galli and every other Christian and conservative opponent of the president believe their concerns are moral, and that the president's Christian and other conservative supporters are political.

This is simply wrong.

I and every other supporter of the president I know support him for moral reasons, not to win a "political poker game." Galli's view is purely self-serving; he's saying, "We Christian and other conservative opponents of the president think in moral terms, while Christian and other conservative supporters of the president think in political terms."

So, permit me to inform Galli and all the other people who consider themselves conservative and/or Christian that our support for the president is entirely moral.

— To us, putting pressure on the Iranian regime — one of the most evil and dangerous regimes on Earth — by getting out of the Iran nuclear deal made by former President Barack Obama is a moral issue. Even New York Times columnist Bret Stephens, who loathes Trump, has written how important the president's rejection of the Obama-Iran agreement has been.

— To us, enabling millions of black Americans to find work — resulting in the lowest black unemployment rate ever recorded — is a moral issue.

— To us, more Americans than ever being employed and almost 4 million Americans freed from reliance on food stamps is a moral issue.

— To us, appointing more conservative judges than any president in history — over the same period of time — is a moral issue. That whether the courts, including the Supreme Court, are dominated by the left or by conservatives is dismissed by Galli as "political poker" makes one question not only Galli's moral thinking but also his moral theology.

— To us, moving the American embassy to Israel's capital city, Jerusalem — something promised by almost every presidential candidate — is a moral issue, not to mention profoundly courageous. And courage is a moral virtue.

— To us, increasing the U.S. military budget — after the severe cuts of the previous eight years — is a moral issue. As conservatives see it, the American military is the world's greatest guarantor of world peace.

Yet, none of these things matter to Galli and other misguided Christians and conservatives. What matters more to them is Trump's occasional crude language and intemperate tweets, what he said about women in a private conversation and his having committed adultery.

Regarding adultery, that sin is for spouses and God to judge. There is no connection between marital sexual fidelity and moral leadership. I wish there were. And as regards the "Access Hollywood" tape, every religious person, indeed every thinking person, should understand that there is no connection between what people say privately and their ability to be a moral leader. That's why I wrote a column for the Wall Street Journal 20 years ago defending Hillary Clinton when she was charged with having privately expressed anti-Semitic sentiments.

That the editor of Christianity Today thinks the president's personal flaws, whatever they might be, are more important than all the good he has done for conservatives, for Christians, for Jews, for blacks and for America tells us a lot ... about Galli and the decline of Christian moral thought.
Blog Editor: Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me. Recently, the Facebook censorship tactic I’ve experienced is a couple of Group shares then jailed under the false accusation of posting too fast. So I ask those that read this, to combat censorship by sharing blog and Facebook posts with your friends or Groups you belong to.
The Galli Poppycock of Christianity Today
John R. Houk
© December 27, 2019
A Response to the Editor of Christianity Today

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