Tag Archives: First Amendment

Top Psychologist: The Whole Concept Of Microaggressions Isn’t Supported By Science

He says, the science just doesn’t add up.

It is a mental disorder – inability to cope with life.

Microaggressions are in the water these days at colleges and universities. Students across the country are now learning what they are, how to avoid them and how to respond to them.

But according to one leading psychologist, the science behind microaggressions just doesn’t add up, and we shouldn’t be using the concept as a guideline for how we treat people because the whole thing could all be in our heads.

Dr. Scott Lilienfield of Emory University has a new review in Perspectives on Psychological Science that argues that microaggressions aren’t actually well-defined, that they are often dictated by the politics of a situation, and that there is a lack of concrete evidence that people suffer any long-term harm from being micro-aggressed.

Part of the problem, Lilienfield says, is that people lump “old fashioned abuse” in with small, everyday actions that are unintentionally racist and sexist. It’s not clear how small or how large an offense has to be before it moves out of the realm of “microaggression” and into the realm of actual racism or sexism —or whether there is actually any difference.

But that’s not stopping colleges from fully embracing the concept. Some students are being forced into microaggression training programs. Some schools are spending thousands on counselors, coloring books, therapy dogs, and ball pits to help students cope with an increasingly racist world. HeatStreet

Video:  Does Free Speech Offend You?

Hawaii Bill Would Force Church, Pro-life Centers To Promote Abortion

The bills  HB 663 and SB 501 target specifically non-profit pregnancy centers.  These bills would allow the government to tell faith-based pregnancy centers what they cannot say, and also what they have to say; provide abortion and contraceptive information even if it goes against their belief system.

Hawaii is considering legislation that would require all pregnancy centers to refer patients to clinics that provide abortions, — a move pro-life centers say will violate their religious beliefs and their free speech rights.

In a 22-3 vote, the state’s Democrat-controlled Senate approved SB 501, which would direct “all limited service pregnancy centers to disclose the availability of and enrollment information for reproductive health services.”

For the Rev. Derald Skinner, pastor at Calvary Chapel Pearl Harbor, that would mean putting a sign advertising abortion in his church.

“They want to mandate all pro-life centers to put an abortion referral sign in our reception areas,” Mr. Skinner said in a video published to the church’s Vimeo account. “Now our particular pro-life center is in our church. So it’s very important to realize that they are dictating to us what we can and cannot say. Will they give me my sermon next and tell me what I can preach?”

A companion bill is expected to pass in the House, which is also controlled by Democrats.  WashingtonTimes

Middlebury Professor Criticizes Students, Defends Free Speech

An event at Middlebury College in Vermont where Dr. Charles Murray gave a speech was disrupted by leftist protesters. The students felt compelled to disrupt Murray’s speech, rationalized the use of violence against ideas they did not agree with, and in an alternate paper claim to be “victims”.

President of Middlebury College:

Today our community begins the process of addressing the deep and troubling divisions that were on display last night. I am grateful to those who share this goal and have offered to help. We must find a path to establishing a climate of open discourse as a core Middlebury value, while also recognizing critical matters of race, inclusion, class, sexual and gender identity, and the other factors that too often divide us. That work will take time, and I will have more to say about that in the days ahead.

Video:  Middlebury professor criticizes students in an interview with Tucker Carlson.  The professor’s concepts –  free speech, civil discussion, and modesty!

The Collision Of Two American Values: Religious Freedom And Freedom From Discrimination

An interesting article in its coverage and analysis of the collision that is building between religious liberty and the sexual revolution.

The collision of two core American values — freedom of religion and freedom from discrimination — is prompting a showdown in legislatures and courts across the country.

For some conservatives, religious freedom means the right to act on their opposition to same-sex marriage and other practices that go against their beliefs. LGBT advocates and their allies, meanwhile, say no one in the United States should face discrimination because of their sexual orientation…

Under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, Congress is barred from enacting “an establishment of religion,” but neither can it prohibit “the free exercise thereof.” The question under current debate is what it means to “exercise” one’s religion.

Tom Gjelten gives examples from current and past news articles showing the divide.

After Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage the case of adoption and Catholic Charities.

One of the thorniest cases involves Catholic Charities, whose agencies long have provided adoption and foster care services to children in need, including orphans. Under Catholic doctrine, the sacrament of marriage is defined as the union of a man and a woman, and Catholic adoption agencies therefore have declined to place children with same-sex couples.

When Massachusetts (and other jurisdictions) redefined marriage to include same-sex couples, making it illegal to deny adoption to them., the Catholic agencies closed down their adoption services and argued that their religious freedom had been infringed.

Stanley Carlson-Thies, who is founder of the Institutional Religious Freedom Alliance said,  “One of the major activities of the [Catholic] church, going way back, was to look after the orphans. For that to be illegal unless the religious people change their standard, seems to me … unfortunate.

But to the LGBT community and its supporters, a refusal to place a child for adoption with a same-sex couple is unacceptable discrimination against people on the basis of their sexual orientation.

Karen Narasaki, a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights said,  “I can’t think of a single civil rights law that doesn’t have some people who are unhappy about it. But once the country has said, ‘Well, we believe that people who are LGBT need to be protected from discrimination, then how do you make sure that happens?”

U.S. Civil Rights Commission language of intolerance used in order to be intolerant.

 Martin R. Castro, commission’s chairman said,  “The phrases ‘religious liberty’ and ‘religious freedom’ will stand for nothing except hypocrisy so long as they remain code words for discrimination, intolerance, racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, Christian supremacy or any form of intolerance.”

Charles Haynes, Director of the Religious Freedom Center at the Newseum Institute in Washington said, “We may not like the claim of conscience, but you know, we don’t judge claims of conscience on whether we like the content of the claim. We are trying to protect the right of people to do what they feel they must do according to their God. That is a very high value.”

Equal Footing

Charles Haynes, Director of the Religious Freedom Center at the Newseum Institute in Washington said,  “Nondiscrimination is a great American principle — it’s a core American principle — as is religious freedom. When you have two important American principles coming into tension, into conflict with one another, our goal as Americans is to sit down and try to see if we can uphold both.”

Haynes put both, nondiscrimination and religious freedom, on an equal footing which the two are not. In the U.S. Constitution religious liberty is foundational to this country.

The article continues on the issue of the free exercise of religion and what does exercise mean? – is it limited to only freedom of worship?  The article on NPR by Tom Gjelten is worth reading.

A Tale Of Two Talks

Free speech in the U.S.

The proximity of these two events, the difference in the arguments and the vast chasm of difference between the outrage and violence against one, and the great silence and complicity with the other, tells us much about what we need to know about the state of free speech — and academia — in America today.

Milo Yiannopoulos – The riots at Berkeley caused national and international headlines.

On the first day of the month, the conservative activist and writer Milo Yiannopoulos was due to speak at the University of California, Berkeley. To the surprise of absolutely no one, some of the new anti-free speech brigades attempted to prevent the event from happening. But to the surprise of almost everyone, the groups who wish to prevent everyone but themselves from speaking went farther even than they have tended to of late. Before the event could even start, Yiannopoulos was evacuated by security for his own safety. A mob of 150 people proceeded to riot, smash and set fire to the campus, causing more than $100,000 of damage and otherwise asserting their revised version of Voltaire’s maxim: “I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend to your death my right to shut you up.”

Jonathan A.C. Brown – NO  outrage.  Few headlines.

On February 7, at the University of Georgetown, Jonathan A.C. Brown, the director of the entirely impartial Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown, gave a 90-minute talk entitled “Islam and the Problem of Slavery”. Except that the white convert to Islam, Jonathan Brown, apparently did not think that there is a particular problem with slavery — at least not when it comes wrapped in Islam.

During the talk (which Brown himself subsequently uploaded onto YouTube) the lecturer condemned slavery when it took place historically in America, Britain and other Western countries, but praised the practice of slavery in Muslim societies. Brown explained how Muslim slaves lived “a pretty good life”, claimed that they were protected by “sharia” and claimed that it is “not immoral for one human to own another human.” Regarding the vexed matter of whether it is right or wrong to have sex with one of your slaves, Brown said that “consent isn’t necessary for lawful sex” and that marital rape is not a legitimate concept within Islam. Concepts such as “autonomy” and “consent”, in the view of the Director of the Alwaleed Center at Georgetown, turned out to be Western “obsessions”.

Of course, Jonathan Brown’s views on Islam are by no means uncommon.

Online:  GateStoneInstitute

Human Rights Organization Places U.S. In ‘Hall of Shame’ For Christian Persecution

The International Christian Concern (ICC) has three categories for classification of Christian persecution: “Worst of the Worst,” “Core Countries” and “New and Noteworthy.”

The ICC placed the United States on its 2016 Hall of Shame list for its persecution of Christians.

Citing the most prominent cases like the Sweet Cakes by Melissa controversy in Southern Oregon, the report made a special case of the Orlando gay nightclub shooting in June 2016 when a Muslim gay man killed 49 people, citing how LGBTQ forces used Christians as scapegoats by accusing them of fostering a culture that made the attacks possible. 

“Anti-Christian entities have been able to leverage the growing secularization of society and culture to their advantage, utilizing the courts as a preferred venue to gradually marginalize and silence Christians,” said the report. “Using the cudgel of ‘equality,’ secular forces in and out of the courts have worked to create a body of law built from one bad precedent after another.”

“While there is no comparison between the life of a Christian in the US with persecuted believers overseas, ICC sees these worrying trends as an alarming indication of a decline in religious liberty in the United States,” the report concluded. TruthRevolt

Online:  ICC 2016 Hall of Shame Report (pdf)

Photo by Don McCullough

ECU Professor Plans To Carry Firearm On Campus After School’s Support Of Band Members Kneeling During The National Anthem

ecuRules apply to all or the rules apply to none.  All have to follow the rules or none have to follow the rules.

19 members of the East Carolina University Marching Pirates knelt during the National Anthem.  During half time the band was booed.

ECU Chancellor Cecil Staton later issued a statement that said the school acknowledges disappointment felt by fans. However, he urged them to act with respect for each other’s views. wncn

East Carolina University Professor Tracy Tuten said that in response to the university’s reaction to band members kneeling during the national anthem, she now plans to open carry a firearm on campus.

Tuten reached out to WNCT Tuesday after sending an email to Chancellor Cecil Staton on her intentions.

In the letter, entitled “From the heart of Pirate Nation,” Tuten said that she was stalked last year and did not carry a firearm then because she said she “respected the university guidelines for bearing arms.”

On Facebook, Tuten said Sunday that the band members who knelt during the national anthem on Saturday “clearly broke the guidelines set forth in the ECU Marching Pirates Handbook and they should be dismissed from the organization.”

The university, however, has not reprimanded the band members and Tuten says in her letter that Chancellor Staton knew “about the band members’ plan but that you endorsed and supported it.”

Now, Tuten says that since the band members were allowed to “act on first amendment without regard to university rules, I too want to act on my second amendment rights to bear arms.” Full letter at wncn.

ECU decides marching band protests ‘will not be tolerated’.  That was quick.

On Monday:  Dr. William Staub, director of Athletic Bands; Chris Ulffers, director of the School of Music; and Dr. Chris Buddo, dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication, made the following statement:

We regret the actions taken by 19 members of the East Carolina University Marching Pirates on game day October 1st felt hurtful to many in our Pirate family and disrespectful to our country. We understand and respect this is an issue where emotions are strong.

The Marching Pirates continue to be fully supportive of all the values the East Carolina University community holds dear.

We have met with the band and the members have collectively reaffirmed their commitment to the unique privilege and responsibility that comes with wearing the uniform of the Marching Pirates.  Full statement at wncn..

California State Senator Drops Proposal That Violated The Free Exercise Of Religion Clause Of The First Amendment

usdCalifornia State Sen. Ricardo Lara (D) said Senate Bill 1146 would shed light on discrimination of the LGBT community, it actually would restrict religious liberty of colleges.

Senator Lara has worked tirelessly to pass legislation that would dictate how religious universities operate in observance of their religion.

Sen.  Ricardo Lara:  “As a gay Catholic man, nobody has the right to dictate how I worship or observe my religion.”

Faced with intense opposition SB 1146 has been amended and now no longer contains a direct assault on the 1st Amendment.

SB1146  would have made it impossible for students to receive the Cal Grant if they chose to go to a religious school that held biblical views on human sexuality and marriage.  Private/religious colleges and universities would be subject to SB 1146 whether they accepted state financial aid or not.

First, SB 1146 will require religious colleges and universities to adopt policies of non-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in order for students to receive state-funded scholarships under the Cal Grant program. Secondly, SB 1146 will require these institutions to give notice if they have requested an exemption to Title IX. Thirdly, SB 1146 will permit lawsuits against institutions that are perceived to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation regardless of whether they accept the Cal-Grant scholarships.  Peabody


SB 1146 Amended

Faced with intense opposition from religious colleges in California, a state Senator said Wednesday he has decided to amend a bill by dropping a provision that would have allowed gay and transgender students to more easily sue private universities for discrimination if they are disciplined for violating church teachings.

Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) is removing a provision of his bill that sought to take away the exemption of religious schools to anti-discrimination laws. Instead, he will press forward with the amended bill that would still require such schools to disclose if they have an exemption and report to the state when students are expelled for violating morality codes. LATimes

Huge Opposition

The withdrawal of the key provision of SB 1146 comes one day after a coalition of 145 Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders and college presidents penned an open letter to the legislature claiming the bill violates religious liberty and “creates its own form of discrimination by stigmatizing and coercively punishing religious beliefs that disagree on contested matters related to human sexuality.”

“While we do not all agree on religious matters, we all agree that the government has no place in discriminating against poor religious minorities or in pitting a religious education institution’s faith-based identity against its American identity. This legislation puts into principle that majoritarian beliefs are more deserving of legal protection, and that minority viewpoints are deserving of government harassment. Legislation of this nature threatens the integrity not only of religious institutions, but of any viewpoint wishing to exercise basic American freedoms, not least of which is the freedom of conscience,” the letter also said.

The letter was also signed by multiple distinguished professors of law, including Robert P. George, who only recently completed a term as chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

Leith Anderson, chair of the National Association of Evangelicals, who signed the letter, said via social media that he and others were breathing “sighs of relief and prayers of gratitude that California #SB1146 (restricting religious liberty of colleges) has been dropped.”

Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, also signed the letter. He tweeted that SB 1146 showed “the stakes of a state that imperils the free exercise of religious and the freedom of dissent.”

He added, “The #SB1146 controversy also shows how important it is for religious freedom advocates to stand together, across our divides.” ChristianExaminer

Bill Whittle: American Fascists

Left/right, Progressive/Conservative, Democrat/Republican… The names change and evolve but the core difference remains constant: The Collectivists vs. The Individualists. In his latest FIREWALL, but shows how violence, disruption and intimidation have always been the tools of the Collectivists.

Dr. Ben Carson: Dangerous To Teach Youth To Shut Down Free Speech

first-amendmentIn a free society people DO NOT deny thousands of people their right to free speech and assembly.

In a free society when a person believes that some people are wrong because they have a different opinion – they DO NOT try to shut down them down.  They DO NOT  use violence and the threat of violence as a way to get their message heard.

This is the same thug action the left pulled  in 1968, also in the same city.


Soros sponsored MoveOn takes credit for the violent movement of protesters in Chicago.


MoveOn also is backing Bernie Sanders.

The news videos, news reports, and tweets show this protest was an organized event that took days to plan.



Preacher Given Citation By University of Texas Police For Offending Students

A preacher who is an intern with Campus Ministry USA standing off campus was given a citation (a “citation of disorderly conduct for offending someone”) by a University of Texas police officer.  A student was offended by the preacher’s message and complained.  The UT officer explained that it was illegal for the preacher to offend someone.



The university told TheDC that the officer was responding to students who claimed to be “verbally harassed” by the intern-preacher. The video shows the officer explaining that the intern’s use of “anal” and “penis” offended students, before issuing a citation for disorderly conduct. “After a lawyer representing Joshua called the chief of police, the chief called Joshua and apologized. The citation was withdrawn.” Brother Jed told TheDC.

Ari Cohn, a lawyer with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) told TheDC that he found the video “deeply disturbing.” “Speech that simply offends others is protected by the First Amendment, and contrary to the officer’s statements, it is not the job of police to ‘do something’ about it. Issuing a disorderly conduct citation based on the content of speech violates decades of clear Supreme Court precedent,” Cohn said.

“Even worse is that while Brother Jed is not a campus community member, and was not even on campus property, the officer justified his decision with the fact that students on campus across the way were offended. DailyCaller

Yale Students Sign ‘petition’ To Repeal First Amendment

Yale fail!first-amendment




Trigger warning! This story and video may be unsuitable viewing for the “safe space” crowd.

Looking to understand just how controversial the debate over free speech on our college campuses really is, filmmaker and satirist Ami Horowitz recently traveled to Yale University, one of our nation’s most prestigious institutions of higher learning, to speak directly to students.

“I decided to take this campus free speech debate to its logical conclusion,” said Horowitz, who asked students if they’d sign a petition calling for an outright repeal of the First Amendment. “The result was this unbelievable display of total stupidity.”

In fact, Horowitz discovered a solid majority of the students asked willingly signed the petition, with several expressing their enthusiastic approval for his anti-First Amendment efforts. FoxNews