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Saritha Prabhu, #wingnut thefederalist.com

Donald Trump’s biggest crime was winning the 2016 election. For our political and media elite in the Beltway, that was the catastrophic, unforgivable crime, from which all the other (imaginary) crimes they now pursue him for originated.
How dare he win that election? Didn’t he know the election belonged to Hillary Clinton, who’d been building up to this very moment for three decades, courting every relevant constituency, remembering every useful politician’s birthday, and being as banal as possible to check everyone’s “lesser political evil” box?

How dare he win the election on his very first try? If you scratch the surface, jealousy is one of the driving emotions among Washington’s elite against Trump and his electoral success. He achieved what many career politicians would die and sell their souls multiple times for. And Trump did it seemingly casually, almost effortlessly. How dare he? He must have stolen the election!
How dare he win that election with a shoestring budget and a ramshackle campaign apparatus? How dare he win without an army of consultants, strategists, advisers, pollsters, and fancy data interpreters? Didn’t he understand that our elections are an excellent jobs program for thousands of political operatives and media types?
How dare he win the old-fashioned way: you know, by having a simple, direct message; recognizing heartland voters’ economic woes; and campaigning in that retail-politics way of his? Didn’t he know that 21st-century elections are now won with Big Data, microtargeting of voters, and media-hyped candidates?
How dare he lie and exaggerate in that crude, undisciplined way of his? Doesn’t he know that Washington likes their liars to be polished prevaricators who know how to couch their fabrications in think-tankese?

To add insult to injury, how dare he win by just saying what he (and millions of ordinary voters) thinks? That’s just not done. Didn’t he appreciate that Presidential Campaign-Speak is an art unto itself—something that has been focus-grouped, poll-tested, script-driven, platitude-filled, that’ll give no offense whatsoever to any identity group in America, and bores listeners to tears. How dare Trump riff offhand and entertain voters? The gall of the man!
How dare he say obvious, common-sense things like spending blood and treasure on Middle Eastern quagmires isn’t okay anymore, that America can’t afford to be the world’s security underwriter anymore, that our global trade deals have shafted American workers for too long? Who does he think he is?
Doesn’t he know that on the issues of the day, he needs to consult our over-credentialed, corrupt, and inefficient elites before he says anything? And doesn’t he know that the solution to every issue in our politics is counter-intuitive now: Up is down, war is peace, more illegal immigration is good, and having a wall on our southern border is bad.
How dare he care about ordinary American workers in the Rust Belt? Doesn’t he know that we live in a global economy now, and those Americans are toast? Dang Trump for forcing us to pretend we care about those white working-class voters Democrats had snookered for so long. Thanks to Orange Man, we now have to cater to the very people we despise and who cling bitterly to their God, guns, and religion.

And for God’s sake, doesn’t he know that caring about one’s nation and its citizens is passé? It’s all global now! Pretend-caring in a vague, generalized, feel-good way about global citizens while getting richer off their cheap labor is the fashion now.
For all his flaws, Trump is the best thing to have happened to our ossified, corrupt national politics. He ripped the mask off our political and media establishments. His election victory exposed the empty-souled hypocrites in the establishments of both parties and the national media who shill for them. He is the much-needed human defibrillator to the American political system.
What our ruling elites used to have (and lost) after the 2016 election was a powerful sense of control over our politics. Like millions of voters who are outside the hardcore Democratic base, I’ve been enjoying the primal scream emanating from the ruling and media elite. I may not like or agree with everything Trump does, but the spectacle of jittery, grasping-at-anything-and-everything elites has been enjoyable to watch.
With his unpredictable, heterodox ways of policy-making and communicating to the masses, Trump has, in some ways, neutered the media elite. What we have been seeing for the last two-and-a-half years is nothing but revenge on steroids: For the crime of winning the 2016 election, the elites have pinned all manner of crimes on Trump, hoping something will stick.

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David Harsanyi #fundie thefederalist.com

This week, the Democratic Party was unable to pass a watered-down, platitudinous resolution condemning anti-Semitism, due to “fierce backlash” from presidential candidates, the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), and the now-powerful progressive base. Rather than censuring Rep. Ilhan Omar, the intellectually frivolous, Hamas-supporting freshman representative from Minnesota, she was rewarded and inoculated from party criticism.
More consequently, the Democrats deemed Protocols of Zion-style attacks a legitimate form of debate. That’s because Omar, despite what you hear, has repeatedly attacked Jews, not only Israel supporters, and certainly not only specific Israeli policies.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who would finally bring an “All Lives Matter” resolution to the floor, told reporters she didn’t believe the congresswoman’s comments were “intentionally anti-Semitic.” No educated human believes Omar inadvertently accused “Benjamin”-grubbing Rootless Cosmopolitans of hypnotizing the world for their evil. These are long-standing, conspiratorial attacks on the Jewish people, used by anti-Semites on right and left, and popular throughout the Islamic world.
Even the Democratic Party activist groups that typically cover for the Israel-haters, like the Anti- Defamation League, have condemned Omar. Yet it was the lie that coursed through the Democratic Party’s defense of Omar.
Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren claimed that “branding criticism of Israel as automatically anti-Semitic has had a chilling effect on our public discourse and makes it harder to achieve a peaceful solution between Israelis and Palestinians.” Either Warren believes that accusing Jews and their supporters of dual loyalty and sedition is a legitimate criticism of Israel, or she is deliberately mischaracterizing Omar’s comments to gain favor with the growing faction of anti-Semites in her party.
“We must not,” the socialist Bernie Sanders argued, “equate anti-Semitism and legitimate criticism of the right-wing, Netanyahu government in Israel” because such a thing would be “stifling” debate. Does anyone believe that if left-of-center Kahol Lavan were running Israel, Omar would be less inclined to smear the bipartisan squishes at AIPAC?

Omar has mentioned Benjamin Netanyahu (who, incidentally, is in every way more of a genuine liberal than either Sanders or Omar) once in her Twitter feed, and then only to use this very talking point to defend her comments. As a political matter, no major party in Israel is going allow an independent Palestinian state run by theocrats and terrorists to exist, so Omar and her allies will never be appeased.
Of course, no one argues that Omar’s speech should be curtailed or stifled. The same can’t be said of her defenders, however, who not only falsely claim criticism of her tropes is “chilling speech,” but also decided to transform this 38-year-old firebrand into a helpless, childlike victim.
“We all have a responsibility to speak out against anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia, racism, and all forms of hatred and bigotry, especially as we see a spike in hate crimes in America,” said Sen. Kamala Harris, who, like many Democrats, tried to dilute criticism of anti-Semitism in a torrent of phobias. “But like some of my colleagues in the Congressional Black Caucus, I am concerned that the spotlight being put on Congresswoman Omar may put her at risk.”
We shouldn’t exaggerate the prevalence of hate crimes in America, which is low, but it’s certainly worth pointing out that Jews are the target of 60 percent of those crimes—a far larger percentage than anyone else. In New York City, there have been at least 36 hate crimes against Jews so far this year so far. Shouldn’t Harris be more concerned about Omar’s rhetoric?

As Gad Saad noted yesterday, Omar’s brand of Israel criticism “is almost ALWAYS a cover of existential and definitional Jew-hatred.” This anti-Israel sentiment—opposition to the idea of a national Jewish state—is the most consequential form of anti-Semitism that exists in the world today. It has done more to undermine Jewish safety than all the dog whistles and white nationalist marches combined. Yet, many Democrats have now seemingly joined Corbynites and leftists around the world perpetuating this radicalism.
The normalization of Omarism is a long time coming. Omar’s defenders have been praising and participating in the Women’s March, led by Louis Farrakhan acolytes who believe Jewish people bear a special collective responsibility “as exploiters of black and brown people,” since Trump was elected. But it goes even further back.
When leaving the CBC meeting, “members formed a circle around Omar and Marcia Fudge literally stuck her arm out to prevent reporters from asking her questions. Then a few members hugged Omar, including Al Lawson.” It is unsurprising that Omar, who has great trouble answering simple questions, has the CBC running interference for her hatred. At least seven members of the CBC—a group seemingly immune from criticism—have coordinated and worked with Farrakhan, the anti-Semite preacher who believes “satanic” Jews are “termites” who “deserve to die.” Liberals keep telling me Farrakhan is just a conservative boogeyman, and yet his contingent is growing as Omar and allies like Rashida Tlaib and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez join the ranks.
Democrats’ allies in media quickly came to Omar’s rescue, as well. The Washington Post ran three articles after Omar’s initial comments this week. All three defended her. “Want to combat hate? Stop the hazing of Ilhan Omar and start listening” wrote Wajahat Ali and Rabia Chaudry. Not only shouldn’t Jews censure Omar, the authors argued, they should shut up and listen to her wisdom. In the progressive worldview, Jews, who are successful and predominately white, should put up with a little bigotry for the common good.

As Rep James Clyburn (D-SC), who once also shared a stage with Farrakhan, noted, Omar should be given a free pass because she fled Somalia. “There are people who tell me, ‘Well, my parents are Holocaust survivors.’ ‘My parents did this.’ It’s more personal with her,” he explained. It’s personal to hate Jews when you fled Somalia? The number of people defending Omar on the risible grounds that Muslims should be immune from criticism isn’t surprising when you realize that identity politics demands strict adherence to the hierarchy of victimhood.
When New York Times reporters Sheryl Gay Stolberg (whose article in the aftermath of Omar’s dual loyalty remarks asked if Jewish people had too much power in Washington) and Glenn Thrush (who may or may not be taking diction from the Democratic National Committee) authored a piece about the resolution fight, they spent a large chunk of their space letting everyone know that President Donald Trump—whose daughter converted to Judaism and who moved the American embassy to Jerusalem and who stopped coddling the world’s most dangerous anti-Jewish terror-state—had also used anti-Semitic tropes.
While it’s not worth again debunking the fact that Trump never said neo-Nazis were “very fine people” or pointing out that most of the Jews at the Republican Jewish Coalition laughed at his jokes, it is worth mentioning that Democrats have embraced the worst kind of “whataboutism.”
NBC’s News’ Chuck Todd, in his “I’m obsessed with” segment, offered a jaw-droppingly misleading lecture accusing both parties of having an anti-Semitism problem by comparing elected officials like Omar and Tlaib — who have been embraced by their party, take part in policy making, and now widely defended on the mainstream left — to a fringe Nazi murderer who shot up a Pittsburgh synagogue, whom not a single Republican supports and has nothing to do with the GOP. The very fact that Todd was forced to shoehorn these comparisons is revealing.
In truth, Pelosi’s first watered-down resolution would have passed with most Republicans voting for it, and a number of Democrats defecting. This would have been embarrassing. So she promised to dilute it, and even that wasn’t enough for Democrats. Now, leadership is poised to pass some pointless resolution condemning all hatred.
Omar, an intellectual lightweight, is certainly a problem for America. But the fact that Democrats apparently believe what she says is fine is an absolute disaster.

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Stella Morabito #fundie thefederalist.com

Walt Heyer knows firsthand what it’s like to undergo sex change surgery and then regret it. After living as a woman for nearly a decade, he decided to accept his biological sex and de-transition back to male. By then, Walt had received intensive cognitive therapy that helped him recognize early childhood trauma he had experienced.
The trauma resulted in a mental condition known as dissociative identity disorder (DID). In the clarity of that realization, his gender dysphoria simply vanished. His life as a “woman” all amounted to an attempt to escape reality. Sadly, too few people consider the possibility that gender dysphoria can manifest as a byproduct or symptom of other mental conditions, and most certainly of DID. (More on that below.)

Walt suffered huge waves of regret as a result of following through with his urge to be a woman. He had eagerly taken the bait of politicized medical practitioners, who hurried him along in the transition. He not only regretted what he had done to his body, he also grieved over the estrangement from his wife and children caused by his drastic change in identity.

There was collateral damage to other personal relationships as well. He also regretted the lost decade of his life in which he lived in the persona of a woman.

Heyer’s New Book Shines Light on Trans Life Survivors
Heyer has written several books on transgender regret, but his sixth and newest book, “Trans Life Survivors,” is not his personal story. It’s a compilation of the stories of many others caught up in today’s “transmania.” They specifically sought out Walt to get some much-needed support. They’ve shared their lonely, surreal experiences falling down the trans rabbit hole, hoping to escape as he did.

Walt’s correspondents describe a wide range of frustrating and confusing experiences. Some are nudged into transgenderism by social pressures and emotional manipulation. Many are hastily sent into surgery without adequate counseling (or any counseling at all), or are misdiagnosed. Some of those regret their decision very shortly after having irreversible surgery.

Many concerns about childhood traumas are ignored by therapists who are politically motivated to push as many patients as possible into sex change. They also fear intense ostracism and vicious backlash from the trans community if they “come out” as a potential de-transitioner.

Walt wrote “Trans Life Survivors,” he says, because he wants others “to catch a glimpse of the raw emotions and experiences of people who are harmed by the grand – and dangerous – experiment of cross-sex hormones and surgical affirming procedures.”

Helping Others Escape the Trans Rabbit Hole
For many years, Heyer’s website was virtually the only place for a trans regretter to get some relief from the social and political pressures crashing down. Many of his readers express a joyful sense of liberation in knowing that they are not all alone.

Much of their isolation is caused by our society’s slavish obedience to political correctness, which dictates that there is “no such thing” as transgender regret. Even worse, the transgender lobby is making it very difficult for such people to get the counseling they desperately want and need.

They’ve set up roadblocks in the form of new laws that virtually ban standard cognitive therapy for people who diagnose themselves with gender dysphoria, particularly those who are undecided about their path or actually regret it after the fact. Any legitimate form of talk therapy—therapy that allows for real Q-and-A that doesn’t necessarily result in affirmation of gender dysphoria—has been smeared with the label “conversion therapy.”
Regretters are damned if they do and damned if they don’t. They are not unlike recruits in a dangerous cult who sense that something is amiss, but feel trapped in a Hotel California (or even a Jonestown).

So “Trans Life Survivors” is a godsend for people struggling with trans regret, no matter what stage of transition or de-transition they are in. The book highlights 30 stories gleaned from among the many hundreds Heyer has received from his readers. Many more transgender people have contacted Walt over the years. Walt has been trying valiantly to keep up with the increasing volume of contacts.

His readers are grateful to find a place they can get real and rare information about how changing their identity might affect them down the road—or, increasingly, how they can de-transition once they realize how unhappy the process has made them.

Just Imagine How Regretting a Sex Change Would Feel

Can you imagine what it must be like to tell a therapist of your experience being abused as a child, which you offer as a possible explanation for your dysphoria, only to have the psychiatrist totally ignore that aspect of your past and instead push you to sex-change procedures as the only way to overcome your angst?
Imagine that you then defer to and trust the professional’s expertise, and you accept the treatment. Then, can you imagine, after going through all of that—the hormones, the mutilating surgeries, etc.—you realize it just didn’t work? You end up asking yourself: What did I do? Why did I go ahead with this? Then the trans lobby tells you it’s all your fault, you should have known better, and you’re not really trans anyway, so shut up.

That’s Billy’s story. But his story has a good ending that inspires regretters who have lost hope. Billy de-transitioned, fell in love, and ended up marrying a woman with children. This echoes Walt’s own life experience after de-transitioning. He too fell in love and married an amazing woman. They live a very joyful, rich, and fulfilling spiritual life together as Christians.

Such happy endings and strong relationships might seem unlikely to those who think they’ve hit rock bottom. But those results are real, and they are a source of much hope to those who yearn to de-transition, but who feel “abandoned, ostracized, outcast, and alone,” like Kevin, who reported that his sex-change was the biggest mistake of his life. Only God knows how many regretters Walt has steered away from suicide and towards renewed life.

Hard-to-Find Resources
In “Trans Life Survivors,” you’ll also read about “Blair,” who holds a Guinness World Record for most gender-reassignment surgeries: 167 surgeries to make him feel more like a woman. Needless to say, it didn’t work out. But we can easily suspect in his case the existence of surgical predators who take advantage of vulnerable people. Many others, like Michael, recognize that it’s all “a sick money-making industry.”

Others who have communicated with Walt include parents whose children are being pressured into gender transition by public school officials, social media, and pop culture. “Trans Life Survivors” also includes chapters on the medical realities of sex change as well as the politicization of medicine and psychiatry that locks people into a transgender identity.

The book ends with a useful listing of further resources for those who seek to find a way out. Such resources are very hard to come by, so the book is truly a public service.

Suppressed Support For Those De-Transitioning
After the novelty of the transition wears off—and it very often does—the regretter is stuck in a never-never land of keeping up facades and pretenses. Many report that the constant charade is emotionally draining and casts a pall over life. But if they express a desire to change back, their friends in the trans community often become angry and reject and isolate them.

Walt cites numerous studies confirming that most cases of gender dysphoria co-exist with other mental conditions.
Being shunned by one’s own community is painful. Eric wrote: “I’m trying to come out as a regretter, and I’m finding the community backlash to be difficult and the lack of medical support to be troubling.”

Walt knows that feeling very well. The transgender lobby has come out hard against him when he has spoken publicly about his personal experiences. In addition to smearing him with various epithets such as “religious nut” or “transphobic,” the lobby has worked hard to de-platform him.

Media Matters went into panic mode and ran a smear article when Walt gave a persuasive interview to CNN’s Carol Costello after Olympian Bruce Jenner’s 2015 transition. (Walt’s instincts tell him that Jenner regrets his decision, but is hopelessly stuck in the cultish trap of the limelight. I believe he’s right about that.)
Eric reported an unsettling lack of medical support. Walt cites numerous studies confirming that most cases of gender dysphoria co-exist with other mental conditions, such as DID, bipolar disorder, depression, and obsessive-compulsive disorders. If those other conditions were first treated through cognitive therapy, there’s no telling how much that would alleviate gender dysphoria without any need for invasive surgeries and hormonal treatments.
But this seems to be a well-guarded secret by political and media activists with a stake in promoting identity politics in general, and gender ideology in particular. Why? Probably because it could solve their problems, and their problems are the bread-and-butter of identity politics.

Free Speech Is More Important than Ever
The pressure can be even worse when dealing with the government agencies that supposedly respect the right to choosing one’s sex. Walt spent about 30 years—making eight to ten attempts—before he finally got a judge in California to reinstate the word “male” on his birth certificate. Despite all that, the transgender lobby insists Walt was never really transgender in the first place! Yet, strangely, they accept his diagnosis of dissociative identity disorder.

Would they allow people with gender dysphoria to seek out therapies that actually explore its psychological source?

The key question is this: Would Walt’s accusers allow others the same therapy, allowing them clarity to sort out whether their gender dysphoria is a part of a co-existing condition? After all, when claiming that Walt was “never transgender” they often point out and accept his diagnosis of DID. The Media Matters story cited above did just that.

So would they allow people with gender dysphoria to seek out therapies that actually explore its psychological source? And then allow their condition to be treated so their gender dysphoria might actually vanish without facades and surgeries?

Obviously not, since this goes against the trans activists’ claim that there’s such a thing as a woman’s brain trapped in a man’s body, and vice versa. Real cognitive therapy threatens to collapse that house of cards.
The ban on so-called conversion therapy is really a ban on all talk therapy that doesn’t affirm self-diagnosed gender dysphoria. Any therapist who so much as questions a patient’s yearning to be the other sex risks losing his or her license, or worse.

If the patient has nagging questions, therapists cannot even entertain those questions without putting license and job at risk, since the interpretation of what constitutes “conversion therapy” is so loose. It’s all up to trans activists and their legislative machinery. Psychotherapists are increasingly aware that they are now legally required to play along with each and every self-diagnosed case of gender dysphoria presented to them, or face legal consequences.

De-Transitioners Are Simply on a Journey Home
When one speaks of “going home” in the poetic sense, it has nothing to do with abuses or dysfunction that one might have experienced, leading to gender dysphoria. Being “home” simply means having a sense of being in the right place, living out your God-given purpose in your God-given body. It means being comfortable in your own skin so you can enjoy the view outward instead of constant navel-gazing.

When you don’t have that joy, or if you’ve lost it along the way, a different sort of dysphoria sets in. It can go by the name homesickness.

At some point in our maturity, we realize that joy and adventure don’t have to be in some alien place. When you go looking for your heart’s desire, to paraphrase Dorothy in the “Wizard of Oz,” there is much to discover right in your own backyard.

In fact, there is probably even more excitement in discovering the true reality of who you are than in pursuing shiny objects, trying to pretend to be someone else, and then trying to force everybody around you to cater to that persona. How exhausting.

The Joy Outweighs the Sorrow
As scary as de-transitioning might seem, once the possibility of it is validated by someone like Heyer, who’s been there and done that, there is a great joy in it, no matter the physical disfigurement or the years wasted.
At some point, like Dorothy, you realize that there really is no place like home.

Trent explained this when he wrote that he was very much looking forward to having his breast implants removed and getting men’s clothes back into his wardrobe: “It’s really been so exciting going back to who I really am!” He also noted: “Hidden deep underneath the make-up and female clothing was the little boy carrying the hurts from traumatic childhood events and he was making himself known. Being a female turned out to be only a cover up, not healing.”

Such attempted cover-ups are analogous to reaching for a mirage. In this case we might say it’s a rainbow-like mirage. Regretters are not unlike Dorothy—and all of us—who sang wistfully searching for a place “over the rainbow” where our troubles melt away. But the rainbow always recedes as you try to reach it. And it’s ephemeral, disappearing with varying conditions.

At some point, like Dorothy, you realize that there really is no place like home. You can finally see the magic, the warmth, in the seemingly mundane. But regretters first need to escape the isolation and the loneliness foisted on them by a culture that rejects their condition.

As Walt notes, they need support to make this trek, as did he: “Regretters going back need people around them to lend strength for the journey – people willing to listen with love, speak healing words, provide emotional, legal and financial assistance and cheer them on to their homecoming.”

“Trans Life Survivors” serves as a road map to make that journey back home.

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Scalia #fundie thefederalist.com

Concerned Citizen: You're going to say that Maxine Waters calling for "confrontation" is a call for violence? That Holder's figurative comment that "when they go low, we kick them" is a call for violence? That Clinton's comment regarding the appropriate time for civility is a call for violence?
You're obviously not a serious person. The only real "call for violence" in your list was an over-the-top statement in 2011 by a Democratic congressman who has been out of politics for 7 years, but you ignore the President's daily ridiculous comments, including just this past week praising a current Republican congressman for assaulting a reporter.

Scalia: Representative Steve Scalise and others were shot by a left-winger. Senator Rand Paul was physically assaulted and had his ribs broken by a left-winger. GOP offices have been vandalized and conservative speakers have been prohibited from speaking at certain college campuses. Left-wingers riot when conservatives come to speak. So, though you may be technically correct that the mentioned Democrats have not called for violence, the actual violence being committed is coming mainly from the Left.
I am not saying that all violence comes from the Left, it's just that the outrage here is misplaced because we don't know who sent the "bombs."

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Daniel Payne #fundie thefederalist.com

These days it’s no easy life for perpetrators of fake hate crimes and hoaxes generally: every time somebody comes up with a really good fake scandal, the whole thing seems to unravel within a short while. Time was, a man could go through all the trouble to arrange a hoax and could expect to reap the rewards of his hard work. Not anymore.
What’s changed? Part of it is technological: there are more security cameras, more digital paper trails, more text message records. These present opportunities for hoaxes to be exposed: there are simply more chances for people to give something away, either idiosyncratically (by, say, sending an incriminating e-mail or text message) or extraneously (by being caught on a closed-circuit camera, for instance).

Perhaps more importantly, with the multiple sensational hoaxes taking place over the past decade or so (Breitbart has catalogued more than 100 of them), much of the public—at least among those of us who work in media—has become vigilant in spotting such chicanery and exposing it. Just the same, plenty of hoaxes still get widespread attention before they’re exposed; sometimes they cause lots of damage before they’re revealed as fake.
The good news is you can train yourself to be a hoax-spotter as well. You never know: you might be instrumental in exposing the next big fake hate crime or hoax. Here are three things to look for in determining whether an accusation is probably real or possibly fake.
1. The Allegations Are Too Good to Be True
What do I mean by this? Simply that you should be skeptical of claims that overly gratify certain biases or cultural narratives. The more an accusation of wrongdoing or criminal activity sounds like a picture-perfect capitalized example of Hate Crime or Wicked Evil Behavior, the more you should mistrust the claims.
Take, for example, the now-debunked Rolling Stone article “A Rape on Campus,” which detailed an alleged hours-long gang rape of one young woman by a bunch of fraternity boys. The whole story turned out to be a fabrication and a global humiliation for Rolling Stone. But in the beginning, everyone believed it. Why?

As Richard Bradley pointed out (Bradley was one of the first to publicly question the story), the tale gratified many people’s pre-existing biases: biases regarding “rape culture,” fraternities, men (especially Southern men), and feckless, hostile college bureaucracies. You could have hardly asked for a story that played into more prejudices. Coincidentally, the story turned out to be an enormous lie.
Those of us who raised suspicions were lambasted as “truthers” and rebuked as rape apologists and misogynists. Everybody could have saved themselves a lot of humiliation and anger during those crazy weeks if they had simply exercised a bit of healthy skepticism.
More recently, in the aftermath of the Orlando nightclub massacre, a fair number of people claimed to have either had sex with the shooter or else interacted with him on gay hookup apps. There’s that too-good-to-be-true narrative again: an openly anti-gay Islamic man is secretly an active homosexual. It gratifies many peoples’ prejudices: against religion, against anti-gay sentiment, against the way some cultures repress and lambast homosexuality and homosexual desires.
The problem: the allegations are totally unsubstantiated. The FBI has turned up zero evidence. Nobody can find any record of the shooter on any gay dating apps. Somebody produced what appeared to be a profile on one of the apps, but it turned out to be fake. The administrator of one of the apps openly stated he believed it was a hoax. One witness, when pressed to provide more evidence, “became combative,” according to the New York Times: “I don’t need to prove anything to anyone,” he said. “If I said it, it’s true.” Does that sound like a credible witness?

Be skeptical. It doesn’t mean you have to callously or conclusively doubt the people who are making these claims—you should not assume a priori that every victim or witness is a liar. You should, however, be appropriately incredulous when it comes to these things. Fantastical claims should trigger a red flag immediately.
2. The Evidence Doesn’t Add Up
You’re (probably) not a detective or even a journalist, and thus it’s not your job to gather forensic evidence at a crime scene or interview witnesses of murders or assaults. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still make a reasonable judgment regarding available evidence.
Take, for example, the University of Virginia rape hoax mentioned above. The victim claimed to have been raped for three hours on top of broken glass on a fraternity bedroom floor. But she also claimed she refused to go to the hospital for medical treatment. If you’ve been to any frat house across the country, you’ll know they usually aren’t the cleanest or most sanitary places on the planet (I’ve been to several at UVA, and most were uniformly gross). If the rape victim had declined to seek medical treatment after such an episode, the cuts on her back could easily have become infected and she probably would have fallen gravely ill and required hospitalization. That was just one small example of how her story did not add up.
More recently, gay YouTube personality Calum McSwiggan claimed that three homophobic men assaulted him outside of a gay bar in Los Angeles. By his own admission the men punched him hard enough on his mouth to break three of his teeth. The problem? Police later arrested McSwiggan for vandalizing a car, and his mug shot shows absolutely no visible damage to his mouth. Punching someone in the mouth hard enough to snap three teeth in half would leave a lot of bruising and swelling, if not graphically split lips.

More damningly, the Advocate interviewed McSwiggan a few days later, and McSwiggan showed off the bruises, cuts, and other injuries he claims he sustained from the incident—except for his allegedly broken teeth. It’s possible McSwiggan is telling the truth about the assault. But the available evidence strongly implies otherwise. It’s more likely the assault was mostly or entirely fabricated and will be revealed as such in the coming weeks.
So it is with many hoaxes: a quick review of the evidence will often turn up inconsistencies and incoherencies that suggest something isn’t right. Sometimes there are good explanations for these things. Sometimes the explanation is that it’s a hoax.
3. There Is A Big, Public Payoff for the Victim
Our culture has come to prize victimhood: it is often a lucrative trade. Students who claim to feel “unsafe” on college campuses are pampered and feted; liberal college mobs in recent years have even toppled university administrations and forced high-level officials to resign. Being a victim carries a great deal of prestige among large parts of twenty-first-century America.

With this in mind, it is unsurprising many people perpetrate hate hoaxes: they do it for the low kind of fame and fortune that often comes with being a victim. A few years ago a gay waitress fabricated an anti-gay incident for that very reason. A gay pastor in Austin, Texas did the same thing. A black activist at Kean University tweeted fake racist threats at her fellow black students to gin up controversy and build support for her activism.
Sometimes the payoff is less obvious but still very real: earlier this year three black women claimed they were assaulted on a public bus by white men who also hurled racial slurs at them. It turned out to be false: the young women had started a fight on the bus and wanted to deflect attention away from their own bad behavior. In the meantime the women received tons of support and the campus turned into a hotbed of racial activism. Payoff!
Whenever you read of a terrible or sensational claim of violence or bigotry, it is always worthwhile to ask: what is the potential payoff for the people making these claims? This doesn’t mean you should assume every victim of every crime is trying to scam you. But for the kinds of headline-grabbing events that often drive our news cycles, this kind of curious skepticism is always advisable.

If you follow these three rules, there is a better-than-average chance you’ll spot hoaxes instead of being sucked in by them. You may even do better than our credulous media and pundit class, both of which are often very eager to report on these hoaxes without doing even basic investigatory work. You will save yourself a lot of embarrassment on social media if you’re not taken in, and you won’t contribute to any mass hysteria or public pitchfork mobs in the meantime.
There is, of course, a danger in being too skeptical: in doubting 100 percent any kind of wild or fantastical claim a victim or witness makes. You shouldn’t close your mind to the possibility that these claims are true. All of the hoaxes listed here were 100 percent possible. The problem was, they weren’t very plausible—and in the end they ended up being total fakes, promoted and spread by people who were too eager to question much.
Do not be scared to be skeptical. It may make you unpopular with a certain class of people who eagerly want to believe everything that gratifies their biases. You might get yelled at or scolded if you are too prudent or cautious in getting on board with a public outrage. But you’ll be doing the right thing: making an informed judgment based on the facts instead of blind, biased rage. That’s always worthwhile.
Daniel Payne is an assistant editor for The College Fix, the news magazine of the Student Free Press Association. Daniel's work has appeared in outlets such as National Review Online, Reason, Front Porch Republic, and elsewhere. His personal blog can be found at Trial of the Century. He lives in Virginia.

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Julie Kelly #conspiracy thefederalist.com

World’s Largest Science Organization Gives Top Honor To Conspiracy-Monger Michael Mann

The world’s largest science organization is bestowing a top honor on a climate propagandist who spends lots of his time making ridiculous, inflammatory comments.

If you need another example of scientific establishment’s deteriorating credibility since the election of Donald Trump, here it is: The world’s largest science organization is bestowing a top honor on a climate propagandist who spends lots of his time making hateful, inflammatory comments about the president, his family, his administration and GOP lawmakers on social media.

Michael Mann, a Penn State University professor and infamous author of the so-called “hockey stick” graph to show the planet is warming, will receive the 2018 “Public Engagement with Science” award by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) this weekend. The award will recognize Mann’s “tireless efforts to communicate the science of climate change to the media, public and policymakers.”

There’s no question that Mann is the climate tribe’s most outspoken firebrand. He is the media’s go-to source for a doomsday comment about anthropogenic global warming. Since the beginning of the month, Mann has been quoted in dozens of articles—not necessarily about science, but to berate the Trump administration for reversing many of President Obama’s climate change policies.

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Hans Fiene #sexist thefederalist.com

The latest numbers on American birth rates are in, and they yield only one reasonable conclusion: All of us need to start having more babies or else the upcoming demographic tsunami will consume our nation, cripple our social programs, and leave us with a future so bleak that our only source of joy will be the moment we’re chosen to receive the sweet, fatal kiss of the Obamacare Death Panels, the Trumpcare Firing Squads, or the OprahCare Hemlock Squadrons.

Perhaps I’m overstating the danger a bit, but the point remains: Americans need to raise our sagging birth rates. One of the best ways we can do so is by reversing the trend of Americans waiting longer to get married. So, apart from tearing down America’s institutions of higher education, which tend to slow down the recitation of wedding vows, how do we do that? It’s quite simple. We tear down the Friend Zone.

Every year, countless young men find themselves trapped in the Friend Zone, a prison where women place any man they deem worthy of their time but not their hearts, men they’d love to have dinner with but, for whatever reason, don’t want to kiss goodnight.

Being caught in the Friend Zone is an inarguable drag on fertility rates, as a man who spends several years pledging his heart to a woman who will never have his children is also a man who most likely won’t procreate with anyone else during that time of incarceration. Free him to find a woman who actually wants to marry him, however, and he’ll have several more years to sire children who will laugh, create, sing, fill the world with love and, most importantly, pay into Social Security.

Quite simply, for the sake of our future, the Friend Zone must be destroyed. For the Friend Zone to be destroyed, women must accept the following truths: you don’t have any guy friends and, in fact, you can’t have any guy friends.

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Hans Fiene #fundie thefederalist.com

When The Saints Of First Baptist Church Were Murdered, God Was Answering Their Prayers

Sometimes, God's will is done by allowing temporal evil to be the means through which he delivers us from eternal evil.

“Prayers don’t work. We need legislation.” This has been many secular progressives’ mantra in response to recent mass shootings in America. On Sunday, after a gunman murdered more than 20 people during a church service in Sutherland Springs, Texas, some of them found proof of the powerlessness of prayer. [...]

People of goodwill can certainly disagree over the merits of gun control legislation, just as we can disagree over how long we should wait after a tragedy to discuss its political ramifications. However, we should all recognize that pointing to a couple dozen warm corpses and saying, “Fat lot of good your Jebus-begging did you” is an act of profound ugliness.

It’s also an act of profound ignorance. For those with little understanding of and less regard for the Christian faith, there may be no greater image of prayer’s futility than Christians being gunned down mid-supplication. But for those familiar with the Bible’s promises concerning prayer and violence, nothing could be further from the truth. When those saints of First Baptist Church were murdered yesterday, God wasn’t ignoring their prayers. He was answering them.

“Deliver us from evil.” Millions of Christians throughout the world pray these words every Sunday morning. While it doesn’t appear that the Lord’s Prayer is formally a part of the worship services at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, I have no doubt that members of that congregation have prayed these words countless times in their lives.

Evil Isn’t Just Temporal
When we pray these words, we are certainly praying that God would deliver us from evil temporally—that is, in this earthly life. Through these words, we are asking God to send his holy angels to guard us from those who would seek to destroy us with knives and bombs and bullets. It may seem, on the surface, that God was refusing to give such protection to his Texan children. But we are also praying that God would deliver us from evil eternally. Through these same words, we are asking God to deliver us out of this evil world and into his heavenly glory, where no violence, persecution, cruelty, or hatred will ever afflict us again.

We also pray in the Lord’s Prayer that God’s will be done. Sometimes, his will is done by allowing temporal evil to be the means through which he delivers us from eternal evil. Despite the best (or, more accurately, the worst) intentions of the wicked against his children, God hoists them on their own petard by using their wickedness to give those children his victory, even as the wicked often mock the prayers of their prey.

During Christ’s crucifixion, for example, the same chief priests, scribes, and elders who conspired to put Jesus to death mocked him, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God’”

Yet God proved his son’s divinity by, three days later, lifting him up out of the death those men gave him. Despite the chief priests, elders, and scribes doing all they could to silence the one who claimed to be the savior of the world, God turned their hatred into the catalyst of the world’s salvation.

Your Evil Has Secured My Eternal Bliss
Because of Christ’s saving death and resurrection, death no longer has any power over those who belong to him through faith. So the enemies of the gospel can pour out their murderous rage upon Christians, but all they can truly accomplish is placing us into the arms of our savior.

Saint Stephen was stoned to death after proclaiming the glory of Christ, but those who took his life only succeeded at being God’s instrument for answering his penultimate prayer, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Those who put the early martyrs to the sword surely mocked the God who wasn’t there to protect his followers. Yet through this very persecution God honored his promise to welcome his faithful into his eternal protection.

So when a madman with a rifle sought to persecute the faithful at First Baptist Church on Sunday morning, he failed. Just like those who put Christ to death, and just like those who have brought violence to believers in every generation, this man only succeeded in being the means through which God delivered his children from this evil world into an eternity of righteousness and peace.

“We do not need to fear the day of persecution that’s coming to the church, because God said it’s going to come. He warned us over 2,000 years ago the day was coming. And rather than fear it, He said just endure it. Now ‘endure it’ is a hard word. ‘Endure it’ doesn’t mean that they might take your ice cream away today. ‘Endure it’ means it may be a rough day. It may be a rough few years. But the one who endures to the end will be delivered.”

These are words that First Baptist’s pastor, Frank Pomeroy, preached on October 19, 2014—a little more than three years before his 14-year-old daughter and 25 other members of his congregation were murdered. Despite the immense sorrow he, his family, and his congregation are now experiencing, I pray they will still trust in these words.

Despite the horror that madman made the saints of First Baptist endure, those who endured it with faith in Christ have received his victory. Although the murderer filled their eyes with terror, God has now filled them with his glory. Although he persecuted them with violence, God seized that violence and has now used it to deliver his faithful into a kingdom of peace. Although this madman brought death to so many, God has used that death to give them the eternal life won for them in the blood of Jesus.

Those who persecute the church and those who mock Christians for trusting in Almighty God rather than Almighty Government may believe that the bloodshed in Texas proves the futility of prayer. But we believers see the shooting in Texas as proof of something far different—proof that Christ has counted us worthy to suffer dishonor for his name and proof that no amount of dishonor, persecution, or violence can stop him from answering our prayer to deliver us from evil.

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Hundreds Of Protestors #fundie thefederalist.com

This Yarn Store Owner Received Rape Threats For Opposing The Women’s March, But She Won’t Back Down.

Elizabeth Poe, who owns a yarn shop in Franklin, Tennessee isn't backing down despite getting harassed and bullied for her decision not to sell yarn to make "pussyhats."

When Elizabeth Poe saw video footage of the Women’s March in Washington DC the day after President Trump was inaugurated, she was horrified by all of the vulgarity on display. Women carried signs emblazoned with genitals, many repeatedly chanted curse words, and celebrities delivered speeches riddled with explicit content and threats of violence.

Poe, who has owned a yarn store in Franklin, Tennessee for five years, was frustrated that so many women wore knitted “pussyhats” to the march, ruining what once was a “cute little pattern.” When a woman visited her store the very next day asking for pink yarn to make a hat like the ones she had seen women wearing at the march on TV, she took to Facebook and asked customers who wanted yarn to make a pussyhat to go elsewhere.

By the time she pulled into her home garage at 8 p.m. that night, her post was already getting a lot of attention on Facebook.”I couldn’t get my mind around it, people were responding so fast,” she said.

She stayed in the car for three hours reading the comments on her post before calling the police to alert them about the threatening tone of some of the responses.

On Wednesday morning, a crew from a local TV station walked into her store to film, as her post had gone viral. By the end of the day, she had received about 200 phone calls. On Thursday, 700 people called the store, on Friday, there were another 300 calls. On these calls, she’s been screamed at, called names, and threatened with rape and other violent acts. Some of the callers just breathed loudly into the phone.

Elizabeth Poe Is Not Backing Down
When Poe knows she’s getting a prank call, she answers the phone with a cheery: “Trump Tower, Franklin.”

Poe says she doesn’t think any of these callers will actually carry their threats out.

“They don’t have a lot of guts,” she said.

If the people posting vile things on Facebook were to actually set foot in her store, “They would feel bad for what they’re doing,” she said. “This is a community here that’s so tightly knit.”


As an example, Poe says, one of her customers has cancer, so another customer takes her to treatment. Poe sometimes will leave the store to run an errand.

“Just call me and I’ll tell you how to get on the register,” she instructs her customers then.

Poe sees about 70-80 customers regularly, which she says is about twice a week. In total, she estimates The Joy of Knitting has about 3,000 customers, many who live in other states and stop by the store when they happen to be in town.

To Poe, all of the hate is worth protecting her customers from exposure to unnecessary vulgarity. Recently, one of her female customers confided in Poe that she had been sexually assaulted as a child. Poe says these women shouldn’t have to relive their painful experiences in her store by being confronted with vulgarity. These women — her customers — have been through so much, Poe tells me. They don’t deserve to have a man or a woman come in here and ask for a ‘P hat.'”

During our 86-minute phone call, Poe never once uttered the word “pussyhat.” Instead she referred to the pink caps as a “P hat,” to avoid uttering a slang term for a woman’s genitals.

“This is not what women marched for 50 years ago,” she said. The women who protested Trump, including actress Ashley Judd, whom Poe tells me lives 20 miles from her store, “sunk below a level way below what he ever did” by using coarse language and playing on sexual innuendos.


Some people have tried to throw Poe’s Christian faith back in her face by insisting that Jesus would’ve marched to empower women. That may be true, Poe tells me, but “Jesus would’ve marched with his clothes on.”

Poe knows her customer base. In the days leading up to the march, she didn’t sell a cent of pink yarn. Nobody who comes into her shop protested or made cat hats, she said. And although much of the attention Poe has received has been nasty, it’s also helped her sales.

“Last week paid for new floors,” she says as she shows me carpeting that will soon be replaced. “I’ve done in these four days what I normally do in a month.”

She’s received orders and support from Hong Kong, Great Britain, and every state in the United States.

“It could have really hurt me,” she said. “God had me covered on that. I can’t explain why I’ve made so much money off of so much negativity, but I have.”

Poe, who voted for Trump, used to be turned off by his brash behavior. Years ago, she used watch him fire people on NBC’s “The Apprentice” and would think to herself: “Can’t you been nice when you fire someone?” That was before she opened her store.

“I opened my own business and realized you cannot sugar-coat it,” she said.

Real Feminism Is Helping Women, Not Being Vulgar
In the shopping center where her store is located, Poe is the only female business owner. Her store serves as a place for local women to network. Many of her customers are women who have recently moved to the area. When they come to The Joy Of Knitting, they form friendships and other valuable connections. A lot of women have found jobs from other women in her store because they network as they knit together, Poe said.

“In these four walls, I will control what goes on,” she said. “And that is my right.”

Before opening The Joy of Knitting, she worked at Community Health Systems, which operates 158 hospitals in 22 states, according to its website. Poe says she worked at CHS for “18 of the longest months of my life,” before tensions with another co-worker got too stressful, driving her to seek a job she enjoyed, even if it meant going into business for herself.

“When you go into business there are two cards on the table: failure and success,” she said. “When you quit your day job, the failure card becomes no longer an option.”

Towards the end of our conversation, Poe offered to give me a virtual tour of her store via Facebook messenger’s video chat feature.


The walls are a peaceful light blue, and the left side of the store is furnished with a cream sofa and a fireplace — a cozy environment for the women who spend hours at The Joy of Knitting. The space has a homey, living room feel. There are plenty of books and a mirror that used to hang in Poe’s grandfather’s restaurant.

Poe also sells goods created by local artists, and customers frequently give her little trinkets to decorate the shop.

“They want to be a part of the store,” Poe explained.

While Poe gave me the tour, a customer walked in and she introduced us. Later, she introduced me to her mailman, Mr. Gary, who was “grossed out” by the pussyhats when his wife explained them to him.

Mr. Gary handed Poe a pile of mail. Twenty-five are letters from haters and supporters alike. Later, Poe tells me about 60 percent of the letters have been angry ones, and 40 percent were positive and included “financial support.”

In the stack of mail were also two letters from the Better Business Bureau, detailing complaints filed against her by angry customers. While the nature of these complaints were “beyond the BBB’s scope,” the organization passed along the complaints to inform Poe of allegations being made about her.

One customer demanded that Poe remove the “offensive” post from her Facebook page and pin an apology post to the top for six months.

“You’ll never get an apology from me for protecting my customers,” Poe responded.

What’s next for Poe? After all the ire dies down, she’s planning to help a customer open her own yarn store and is thinking about raising alpacas to make her own yarn.

“I never thought the yarn store would transpire, so maybe I’ll be raising alpacas in a few years,” she said. “God has placed me in this community, and this is where I do my work.”

Before we hung up, Poe tells me to say a prayer for our country.

“We’ve just gotta open up that dialogue,” she said. “We’ve got to learn to disagree without being vulgar and starting fires and punching people in the face.”

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Mike Huckabee #fundie thefederalist.com

Mike Huckabee’s Flawed ‘Jaws’ Analogy Has Trump Getting Eaten By Shark Hillary

Sometimes an analogy just doesn’t play out the way you want. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee was on “The Kelly File” Monday night when he swam up the wrong metaphorical stream, getting his preferred candidate cornered by a Great White.

In an attempt to downplay the effect of recently leaked tapes of Donald Trump speaking crudely of women and his sexual conquests, Huckabee compared the brash GOP presidential candidate to Capt. Quint in Steven Spielberg’s 1975 classic movie, “Jaws.”

“He’s vulgar, he’s salty. He might even get drunk. But hold on, here! He’s the guy who’s gonna save your butt and save your family. And, so at the end of the day, when he kills the shark, you’re happy about it. Now, Hillary is the shark. She’s gonna eat your boat. She’s gonna have open borders, immigration out the kazoo. And, so the choice is do you vote for Captain Quint, who’s gonna save your family, or do you vote for the shark? That’s the choice you get to make.”

Kelly, maintaining a genial side-eye during this extended analogy, paused before delivering the spoiler on this classic to Huckabee: “Now, governor, I hate to be the one to tell you this, but Captain Quint got eaten by the shark at the end of that movie.”

Huckabee, realizing his mistake, shook his head and smiled sheepishly.

“But he died saving the other people.”

Kelly, who apparently knows this movie really well, wasn’t going to let it slide.

Kelly: ‘But he died and went down in flames and the shark won between the two of them.’
Huckabee: ‘The shark didn’t win. The shark got blown up.’
Kelly: ‘After it ate him.’

Kelly closed the interview with her own rendition of Quint’s sea shanty: “Farewell and adieu, my fair Spanish ladies.”

“Any analogy can fall apart. Work with me, here. This is a good one,” Huckabee said in a style reminiscent of “please clap.” It may indeed be a very good one, especially given the pace of October surprises, but not for the reasons Huckabee thinks.

Richard Dreyfuss backed up Kelly:

Quint did not kill Jaws. https://twitter.com/jzokun/status/785708353360060416 …

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Holly Scheer #fundie thefederalist.com

Andy Richter Is ‘Eternally Grateful’ His Wife Aborted His Child

Andy Richter might be a comedian, with a career built around humor and making other people laugh on shows with Conan O’Brien, but abortion is no laughing matter.

Eternal gratefulness for an abortion shouldn’t be something to brag about, but that’s what Andy Richter just did at a Planned Parenthood fundraiser. The actor, who hosted the “Sexy Beast” fundraiser for the Los Angeles branch of PP, credits his girlfriend’s abortion back in 1992 with allowing them to live the lives they wanted.

These lives included eventually marrying each other, children when they decided they wanted to be parents, pets, and careers. What those lives don’t include is the realization that they will forever be missing a child.

Richter and his future wife, Sarah Thyre, lacked steady employment and were focused on building careers when they found she was pregnant. Richter explained what happened next:

Luckily for us Planned Parenthood existed. My girlfriend knew that she was not ready for motherhood, and I knew that I was in no way prepared to be a father. I drove from Chicago in my battered old Toyota pick-up to be with her when she went to Planned Parenthood to terminate her pregnancy. Her choice to get an abortion was a choice that she made with assuredness. She knew that she was doing the right thing for everyone involved. But I can’t say it was easy. She was sad, and I was sad, and it was sad. But to this day, I know that she will tell you that she made the right decision.

How Do the Kids Feel About This?

There is no possible way to explain this as the right decision for at least one person in this scenario: the older sibling of the Richters’ other children. Since they’re so open about this to strangers and made this a public issue, I’d imagine they’ve already discussed the abortion with their living children. One wonders whether they explained that if they had made different choices and had different priorities, there would be another child in their family.

As their living children grow and become adults themselves, maybe this choice will make sense to them. Maybe it won’t. It’s possible they’re distressed to know that had the timing of their conception been different, they could have been the one aborted, because that is a terrible thought.

When a family loses a member, that family is forever changed. No matter how that loss comes about, it is a loss. The lessons that we learn and the growth that can come from pain and grief might be something to be grateful for, but the opportunity to actively cause that loss should not be. That should be difficult, it should be wrenching, and it should not even need to be an option or an easy decision.

Many choices in life are not eternal, but abortion is. Once that baby is gone, it is gone, and future children don’t replace the life that was lost. Children are not interchangeable. They’re unique, each one with limitless possibilities and promise, and snuffing out one because of convenience and whims of parents ends those possibilities.

Richter Hints He’s Uneasy With This Choice

Richter doesn’t find it difficult to support Planned Parenthood after his personal history with abortion, however, and he wasn’t shy about his feelings about pro-life people: “It’s easy. Planned Parenthood helps a ton of people, and if they don’t agree with that, f— ’em. You can quote me on that. Tell them I said, ‘F— ’em.’”

People who are at peace and confident in their decisions don’t need to attack others. They can tolerate disagreement without rage. Pro-life people don’t seek to leave families without help and support, they desire the opposite: for all members of a family to be present and able to help. We want for all babies to have the chance to pursue their dreams, not just those lucky enough to be wanted.

Richter might be a comedian, with a career built around humor and making other people laugh on shows with Conan O’Brien, but abortion is no laughing matter. That sadness he and his wife felt was for a good reason. They were looking at temporary circumstances and making permanent decisions. That baby wouldn’t have ruined their future, but abortion ruined the chance for that child to ever have an opportunity at life. That’s something nobody can be eternally grateful for.

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Americadies #fundie thefederalist.com

I favor hunting liberals as a sport. Imagine how easy they would be to nail, coffee bars and art museums would be like salt licks for them.

(...)

Which is why we should hunt them for sport. Their heads would look good on my garage wall.

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Daniel Payne #fundie thefederalist.com

Trans Mafia Put North Carolina In A Chokehold
The LGBT mob threatens states with economic and social violence because they know it works. Its latest target is North Carolina, but it won't be the last.

The ongoing LGBT activism that has overtaken a large part of the United States puts us at a strange crossroads in our country’s history: for perhaps the first time in American history, a civil rights effort is in fact more authoritarian and intolerant than the structure of power against which it is rebelling.

Aided by media that are both incompetent and often transparently biased, along with a burgeoning corporate culture that has discovered the economic benefits of public moral preening, we have what Stella Morabito aptly terms the “LGBT mafia:” a profoundly illiberal social movement rather single-mindedly determined to stamp out even minor and inconsequential dissent from its orthodoxy. It’s not going anywhere. In fact, it’s getting worse.

Many of us were appropriately horrified a couple of years ago when Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich was ousted from his position for, years before, having opposed gay marriage legalization in California. Two years later, the controversy surrounding Eich’s downfall now seems rather quaint in comparison—some histrionics, to be sure, and a silly display of activist vanity from OKCupid, but that was mostly it. The dismaying episode was nonetheless quickly over, and perhaps many of us thought we’d seen the worst of it.
The Hounds Smell Weakness

How wrong could we possibly get? Last month North Carolina’s “bathroom bill,” which mandates that men must use men’s restrooms and women must use women’s, unleashed the full fury of the LGBT mafia. It makes Eich’s ousting look like a tête-à-tête in a Parisian Enlightenment salon by comparison.

In response to this incredibly reasonable and commonsense bill, Bruce Springsteen cancelled a concert in Greensboro; dozens of corporations signed a protest letter; PayPal withdrew plans for an operations center in Charlotte; the composer Stephen Schwartz vowed that his productions—among them the Broadway hit “Wicked”—will not run in North Carolina; A&E and Lionsgate declared they will not film any productions in the state; and the federal government is deciding whether it can withhold billions and billions of dollars in highway, housing, and education funds.

All this because North Carolina affirmed what everyone believed until the day before yesterday: that we shouldn’t allow grown men into women’s restrooms.

We must give the LGBT mafia credit: their tactics work, and they know it. State governments and state governors are exquisitely sensitive to negative press, and many of them have folded in the face of this irrepressible onslaught. A year ago Indiana Gov. Mike Pence amended a state-level religious freedom law because of withering criticism from LGBT activists. The law in question didn’t actually do any of the things the critics said it did, but that didn’t matter: Indiana was an example, and Pence had to be broken to the saddle placed on his back.

In Georgia last month, Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed a religious liberty bill that would have protected religious objectors from having to violate their beliefs, including from being forced to accommodate same-sex marriages. This was religious liberty 101 stuff, noncontroversial to anyone who takes the First Amendment even moderately seriously. Just the same, corporations began threatening boycotts and relocations if the bill passed. Deal acted accordingly and scuttled the bill. You could even sort of understand why he did it, at least when you adjust for spineless cowardice.

The latest scofflaw in North Carolina may also have made an impression to its neighbor to the south: Gov. Nikki Haley has dismissed a similar law proposed for South Carolina, saying, “I don’t believe it’s necessary.” (Just you wait, governor.)
No Tolerance for the Tolerant

This is not merely a state-level affair. In Wisconsin, a young woman who “identifies” as a man successfully agitated to run as prom king at her local high school. The school would not allow her to do so, so she and other students protested until “the decision was taken from the school level to the district level,” and the Kenosha Unified School District mandated that the school accommodate the young woman’s desires. A higher authority stripped what little autonomy the high school had in this important and sensitive area.

It should break your heart that this young woman is laboring under the delusion that she is a man. I know it breaks mine. Yet I am also angry at the school district that indulged her misunderstanding and imposed this misbegotten belief on a high school that had correctly assessed the situation.

We are living in an age of growing intolerance and prejudice: not from the scary white male conservative boogeymen who normally fill that role in the public’s perception, but from the ministers of liberal dogma themselves. Are you a clergy member who wants to uphold the ancient conjugal man-woman view of marriage? Tough luck. Do you want to protect your daughter from the predatory men who might take advantage of a well-meaning transgender bathroom access law? Sorry, you’re a bigot. Do you want to run your business in accordance with your sincere and reasonable beliefs? You’ll be run out of town.

This is the LGBT mafia. This is what it does. It is what we have to live with now. If your legislature or governor wants to pass some modest piece of legislation that protects your right to live as you please, then they’ll make your state an offer it can’t refuse.

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JustChris1976 #fundie thefederalist.com

The reason these people were never allowed to marry is the same reason that we don't allow twelve-year-olds to marry, they are not mature enough. Marriage involves emotional depth and a range of emotions that gays and lesbians are not capable of feeling, just as a deaf person cannot understand what a symphony is. They are adults chronologically, but emotionally they are stuck at 6th or 7th grade level and never go beyond that in their narcissism and obsession with sex. The proper response is not hate but pity. Who knows why they never grew up, or why they never learned to consider other people's feelings?

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DavidPHart #fundie thefederalist.com

The guy who was director of the local "AIDS crisis task force" died of AIDS. So did his "husband." They had been together over 20 years.

That is all you ever need to know about these faux "marriages." They are about as "committed" as alleycats in heat. They can't commit, and they can't even love their partners enough to stop bringing home STDs.

The "LGBT community," united by its viruses.

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Daniel Payne #fundie thefederalist.com

It has become devastatingly clear that virtually the entirety of the gay-marriage activist effort was built on a lie. That lie, repeated ad nauseam, was this: gay marriage will affect nobody outside of the gays who wish to partake in it. This will become abundantly false as the Supreme Court-instituted gay marriage regime takes effect.

We did not actually need to nationalize gay marriage to realize this. We have had examples for years from the states that already legalized the practice. Combined with the growing public hostility towards supporters of traditional marriage, it is impossible at this point to deny that gay marriage is a growing and serious threat to the liberty of those who disagree with it.
Gay Marriage Doesn’t Hurt Anyone

Exhibit A comes to us from Gresham, Oregon, a state in which gay marriage has been legal since 2014. In Gresham, a couple of bakers declined to make a wedding cake for a lesbian wedding. Because the lesbians in question endured “emotional and mental suffering” after their cake request was turned down, the state’s labor commissioner demanded that the bakers—a husband-and-wife team—pay the plaintiffs $135,000.

In addition to this astronomical charge, the excitable commissioner ordered that the couple was not allowed to publicly proclaim their desire to not bake cakes for gay weddings. That is to say, the state slapped the Christian bakers with an enormous fine, then forbid them from advocating the point of view for which they were being fined.

Gay marriage, we’ve been told, will not affect you.

Exhibit B is found near Albany, New York, a state in which gay marriage has been recognized since 2011. At the Liberty Ridge Farm, another husband-and-wife team was fined $13,000 for refusing to host a gay wedding on their property (at which they host other public and private events). In 2012, a lesbian couple requested to use the property for their wedding. Believing in traditional marriage, the couple declined. Unluckily for the owners of the property, the phone call was being recorded. A judge subsequently determined the farmers guilty of “sexual orientation discrimination,” hence the fine. The farmers were also ordered to attend “staff re-education training classes.” The defendants have appealed the decision.

Just legalize it, we were told for years. It’s not going to affect you!
No More Churches For You

Exhibit C comes from the laughably-misemployed religion writer for The New York Times, Mark Oppenheimer: “Now’s the time,” he announced after the ruling, “to end tax exemptions for religious institutions.” Oppenheimer, you see, believes that a tax exemption is functionally identical to a “subsidy,” and because religious institutions and other non-profits can be “quite partisan,” they don’t deserve to receive “subsidies” that require the rest of us to “faithfully cut checks to them.”
Newspapers are using freedom to silence differing opinions on a critical, complex issue of serious public interest.

As a result of the Supreme Court declaring that homosexuals have the right to marry, in other words, we’re now facing an energized progressive intelligentsia that wishes to effectively shutter many if not most of America’s churches.

They told us over and over again: Gay marriage has nothing to do with you! You don’t have to worry about it!

Exhibit D—perhaps the most foreboding—is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in which the editor of PennLive/The Patriot-News announced the paper “will no longer accept, nor will it print, op-eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage.” Under the First Amendment, the paper is free to refuse to print any letters it wants, of course. It is unfortunately utilizing that precious freedom to silence differing opinions on a critical, complex issue of serious public interest.

It is wholly plausible that many newspapers will follow suit, believing that opposition to or even skepticism about gay marriage is equivalent to, as the above newspaper’s editor put it, “racist, sexist, or anti-Semitic” opinions. Overnight, the sincerely-held opinions of a great many good, well-intentioned Americans became verboten. Reasonable dissent will not be tolerated.
Cheer Gay Marriage Or Face an Angry Mob

Over and over and over, the refrain went: Gay marriage is not a threat to you! Legalize it and nothing will change!
A ruling in favor of ‘love’ has instead resulted in open and unapologetic hate.

We have known for some time that this refrain was a lie—that it was a willful lie, and that these assurances were nothing more than a smokescreen of dishonesty and political chicanery. It is obviously not enough for gay marriage to be merely legal; progressives take it as a matter of personal offense that anybody, anywhere might not get behind homosexual matrimony as enthusiastically as the Left has done.

The Supreme Court’s decision will only galvanize this tendency. Thus comes the deluge, now on a national scale: the fines, the gag orders, the unfavorable tax treatment, the refusal to entertain the opposition’s opinion in polite society. The Supreme Court has unleashed a strange, almost comical beast upon the American body politic: a ruling in favor of “love” has instead resulted in open and unapologetic hate, and a public campaign made in the name of “tolerance” has instead resulted in a ruthless regime of intolerance.

Endlessly, it was repeated: if gay marriage is legalized, it will have nothing to do with you. Well, here we are. Gay marriage is legal. And it is clear that it will have everything to do with every one of us. We were lied to, and we will have to deal with the consequences, one silenced baker and bankrupt church at a time.

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Paul Moreno #fundie thefederalist.com

At the time of the Founding, slaveholders recognized that slavery contradicted the principles of the Declaration of Independence—Jefferson and others repeated that slavery was wrong—but they pleaded for toleration in dealing with a condition that they could not immediately and fully set right. Over time they stopped seeking mere toleration, began defending slavery as a “positive good,” and objected to any public policy that implied its wrongness. The most radical of them, like George Fitzhugh, argued that slavery was a better social system than free labor.

The pro-homosexual movement has followed a similar trajectory, from toleration to equality to supremacy.

The homosexual-rights movement has long claimed the civil rights movement as its model. But its increasingly strident effort to suppress all moral and religious dissent makes it look more like the antebellum proslavery movement. Some years ago one wit observed that homosexuality, once “the love that dare not speak its name,” had become “the love that can’t shut up.” We cannot let it shut everybody else up.

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Stella Morabito #fundie thefederalist.com

Abolishing all civil marriage is the primary goal of the elites who have been pushing same sex marriage. The scheme called “marriage equality” is not an end in itself, and never really has been. The LGBT agenda has spawned too many other disparate agendas hostile to the existence of marriage, making marriage “unsustainable,” if you will. By now we should be able to hear the growing drumbeat to abolish civil marriage, as well as to legalize polygamy and all manner of reproductive technologies.

Consider also the breakneck speed at which the push for same sex marriage has been happening recently. The agenda’s advocates have been very methodical in their organization, disciplined in their timing, flush with money, in control of all information outlets, including media, Hollywood, and academia. And perhaps most telling is the smearing of any dissenter in the public square, a stigma made de rigueur by Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in his animus-soaked opinion that repealed the Defense of Marriage Act.

We’ve seen also how the Obama Administration’s push for same sex marriage has occurred in lockstep with policies that are hostile to marriage, such as the severe marriage penalty written into Obamacare.

Activist judges have taken their cues from Attorney General Eric Holder who used the DOMA repeal to proclaim open season on any state that recognizes marriage as an organic (i.e., heterosexual) union of one man and one woman. In their crosshairs are state constitutions, businesses, students, communities, churches, and all of those bogus “conscience clauses” that were written into same sex marriage legislation in order to sway wavering state legislators to vote “aye.”

The tipping point came soon after certain big name conservatives and pundits swallowed the bait on same sex marriage. Folks like Michael Barone, John Bolton, George Will, S. E. Cupp, and David Blankenhorn have played a huge role in building momentum for this movement, which, as we will see, is blazing a trail to the abolition of state recognized marriage. And whether they know it or not, advocacy for same sex marriage is putting a lot of statist machinery into motion. Because once the state no longer has to recognize your marriage and family, the state no longer has to respect the existence of your marriage and family.

Without civil marriage, the family can no longer exist autonomously and serve as a wall of separation between the individual and the state. This has huge implications for the survival of freedom of association.

The notion of marriage equality was never about marriage or about equality. It’s all about the wrapping paper. It’s been packaged as an end in itself, but it is principally just a means to a deeper end. It is the means by which marriage extinction – the true target — can be achieved. If marriage and family are permitted to exist autonomously, power can be de-centralized in society. So the family has always been a thorn in the side of central planners and totalitarians. The connection between its abolition and the limitless growth of the state should be crystal clear. So anyone who has bought into this movement, or is tempted to do so, would want to step back and take a harder look.

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Heather Barwick #fundie thefederalist.com

Gay community, I am your daughter. My mom raised me with her same-sex partner back in the '80s and '90s. [...] I still feel like gay people are my people. I've learned so much from you.

[...]

I'm writing to you because I'm letting myself out of the closet: I don't support gay marriage. But it might not be for the reasons that you think.

[...]

It's not because you're gay. I love you, so much. It's because of the nature of the same-sex relationship itself.

[...]

Same-sex marriage and parenting withholds either a mother or father from a child while telling him or her that it doesn't matter. That it's all the same. But it's not. A lot of us, a lot of your kids, are hurting. My father's absence created a huge hole in me, and I ached every day for a dad. I loved my mom's partner, but another mom could never have replaced the father I lost.

[...]

Gay marriage doesn't just redefine marriage, but also parenting. It promotes and normalizes a family structure that necessarily denies us something precious and foundational. It denies us something we need and long for, while at the same time tells us that we don't need what we actually crave. That we will be okay. But we're not. We're hurting.

Kids of divorced parents are allowed to say, "Hey, mom and dad, I love you, but the divorce really crushed me and has been so hard. It shattered my trust and made me feel like it was my fault. It is so hard living in two different houses." Kids of adoption are allowed to say, "Hey, adoptive parents, I love you. But this is really hard for me. I suffer because my relationship with my first parents was broken. I'm confused and I miss them even though I've never met them."

But children of same-sex parents haven't been given the same voice. It's not just me. There are so many of us. Many of us are too scared to speak up and tell you about our hurt and pain, because for whatever reason it feels like you're not listening. That you don't want to hear. If we say we are hurting because we were raised by same-sex parents, we are either ignored or labeled a hater.

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Hans Fiene #fundie thefederalist.com

[Part of an editorial discussing the hastily-canceled funeral of Vanessa Collier]

If you are a person of faith who would like to have a religious funeral in a church, it’s important to consider whether the faith in your heart is compatible with the faith taught within the walls of the building you’ve selected. No matter how beautiful you may find a sanctuary, the people who built that sanctuary and regularly gather in it probably find their doctrine even more beautiful and won’t want to see it sullied by a funeral that insists God has spoken words they believe He didn’t.

So if you want to have a funeral that says God approved of your gay marriage in a church that says God rejects gay marriage, you should probably keep looking for another venue. It shouldn’t be too hard to find one that will prevent your nephew Kaden from threatening to glitter-bomb a Romans 1-confessing pastor 20 minutes into your wake. After all, plenty of churches would love to celebrate the aspects of your life that orthodox Christianity won’t. In fact, this is pretty much the only reason Unitarians exist. So don’t hesitate to give them a call and set things up if that’s the group of believers who believe most similarly to you.

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Hans Fiene #fundie thefederalist.com

[Bolding mine]

While [Vanessa] Collier’s aborted funeral is certainly a sad story, it’s not terribly surprising. In the mournful rush to find a church building to celebrate her life, it appears that Collier’s family simply assumed that the parts of her life involving her lesbian spouse would be welcome, especially since they were renting the facility and providing their own pastor to conduct the service. New Hope Ministries, it also appears, assumed that those renting a church that opposes homosexuality wouldn’t display photos celebrating a gay marriage in their sacred space. The assumptions on both ends are relatively understandable, but had Collier taken the time while still living to determine whether New Hope was an appropriate venue for her funeral, this last-minute collision of worldviews probably would have been avoided.

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Stella Moribito #fundie thefederalist.com

The notion of marriage equality was never about marriage or about equality. It’s all about the wrapping paper. It’s been packaged as an end in itself, but it is principally just a means to a deeper end. It is the means by which marriage extinction – the true target — can be achieved. If marriage and family are permitted to exist autonomously, power can be de-centralized in society. So the family has always been a thorn in the side of central planners and totalitarians. The connection between its abolition and the limitless growth of the state should be crystal clear. So anyone who has bought into this movement, or is tempted to do so, would want to step back and take a harder look.