January 17, 2014
Religious Freedom Bill In Maine
Senator David Burns of Maine recently introduced the Religious Freedom Bill to the Maine House Judiciary Committee. The bill is designed to protect the people from unlawful government actions that affect religious freedom.
During the hearing on Thursday, Burns stated:
“Without sufficient protection for this right, citizens are never more than one judicial opinion away from losing their religious freedom. After 1990, governments throughout the United States also subjected members of the Jewish faith to autopsies, despite their religious objections. They zoned churches out of commercial areas and in one case, forced a religious shelter for the homeless to close because it could not afford an elevator.”
Although Maine’s constitution protects religious freedom, many believe that the proposed bill is necessary to ensure that the state guarantees the same protections as the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993. Since the US Supreme Court declared that this Act pertains only to the Federal government, several states–18 so far– have endorsed their own laws to provide protection.
The Religious Freedom Bill will allow residents of Maine to sue the state if they believe that the state is unjustly infringing on their right to exercise religion.
Jeremy Dys, a Liberty Institute attorney, also spoke out at the hearing on Thursday, asserting:
“Religious liberty is an unqualified guarantee by our Constitution. A government should not burden a person’s exercise of religion without providing the most compelling of compelling reasons. The Preservation of Religious Freedom Act makes that clear. Mainers should expect their lawmakers to do all that is in their power to protect and defend their religious freedoms.”
Although many attended the hearing in support of the bill, there were several at the hearing who opposed it, including Oamshri Amarasingham of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
“This bill does not provide legal protection from religion, but rather it elevates religious law over all other forms of law,” said Amarasingham.
The Judicial Committee will officially consider the bill on January 23.
Doctors May Administer Lethal Drugs to Patients
Second Judicial District Judge Nan Nash of New Mexico has ruled that mentally-competent terminally ill patients have a constitutional right to obtain lethal drugs to end their life.
Judge Nash stated:
“This Court cannot envision a right more fundamental, more private or more integral to the liberty, safety and happiness of a New Mexican than the right of a competent, terminally ill patient to choose aid in dying. If decisions made in the shadow of one’s imminent death regarding how they and their loved ones will face that death are not fundamental and at the core of these constitutional guarantees, than what decisions are?”
The ruling is the result of a lawsuit filed by two doctors in the state. The challenge was supported by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the right-to-die advocacy organization Compassion & Choices.
Although New Mexican law criminalizes assisted suicide, the organizations argue that the restrictions do not apply to the terminally ill. However, the state disagreed, explaining that the law included physicians’ “aiding in dying.”
Judge Nash asserted that “the liberty, safety, and happiness interest of a competent, terminally ill patient to choose aid in dying is a fundamental right under our New Mexico Constitution.”
Laura Schauer Ives, the ACLU of New Mexico Legal Director, backed Nash’s decision by saying, “New Mexicans, both healthy and sick, now enjoy the comfort and peace of mind that come with knowing they can prevent a prolonged, agonized dying process at the end of life.”
Paul Holt of First Baptist Church of Magdalena disagrees with the decision and says that Nash’s ruling further contributes to the culture of death in America. Holt strongly asserted:
“From a biblical point of view, the Lord gives life. While death is unpleasant and even unnatural, the Lord holds the keys to death and hell. As we move away from God and His truths, these things become more difficult to grasp. But notice that many who believe in the right of abortion, the killing of the young, also believe in the right to kill the terminally ill. This tends to lead to the right of one person perceived to be of more value over the rights of those of lesser value. It is a slippery slope on which we find ourselves. Regardless of the issues, when we begin to move away from the self evident truths and rights granted by our Creator and articulated in our Constitution by reinterpretation, we lose those rights altogether.”
The Truth About Benghazi
According to a new Gallup Poll, America's biggest problem isn't the economy or even unemployment - it's the government. Nearly a quarter of Americans say the government is the United States' biggest problem. Yesterday, with the release of an 85-page bipartisan report on the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, the percentage of Americans believing that government is the problem is sure to increase.
In the report, the Senate Select Committee attempted to fill in the blanks on the 2012 attack on the US Mission in Benghazi. A list of fourteen official findings was given, and at the top of the list was the truth that the deaths of the four Americans were avoidable.
Although former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is only mentioned once in the report, the whole incident seems to have her as the main culprit.
Representative Jason Chaffetz said, "The bottom line is Hillary Clinton wanted the appearance of normalization in Libya. Security was not driving these decisions. Politics was."
More than just bad management and security failures contribute to the Benghazi incident. For the first time, Democrats and Republicans make the case that the President willingly lied about what the White House knew and when it knew it.
Senator Saxby Chambliss stated:
“I can tell you that within hours, as the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, I knew that it was a terrorist attack. And within 24 hours knew that there was a suspected al-Qaeda leader involved and maybe even more than one individual involved with an al-Qaeda affiliate involved. So as to what the White House knew, surely they knew more than I did, quicker than I did."
However, despite the fact that President Obama obviously knew the truth, he spent several days after the incident lying and blaming the tragic deaths of the four Americans on an internet video.
This Administration can be characterized as the Administration of lies. From, “If you like your health insurance you may keep your health insurance,” to the Benghazi fiasco, there has continued to be a constant stream of polluted lies. Out of the heart the mouth speaketh, and it has become more than evident that this Administration would stand on their head to tell a lie before they would stand on their feet to tell the truth. The only way I would doubt the Bible would be if this Administration quoted it.
Instead of setting the example for the oncoming generation to follow, this Administration offers only broken cisterns which can hold no water.
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