Archive for the ‘Church’ Category

What the Mormons Know About Welfare

March 2, 2012

Mitt Romney has raised the issue of the social safety net. Washington could learn from the lesson of his church.

By NAOMI SCHAEFER RILEY

Salt Lake City

Ever since Mitt Romney said he was “not concerned about the very poor” but would fix America’s social safety net “if it needs repair,” conservatives and liberals have been frantically making suggestions. Gov. Romney says he would consider options like restructuring Medicaid. But if he wants to see a welfare system that lets almost no one fall through the cracks while at the same time ensuring that its beneficiaries don’t become lifelong dependents, he could look to his own church.

As I ride in a golf cart through a new 15-acre warehouse on the outskirts of Utah’s capital, I can’t help but wonder: How many Wal-Marts would fit in here? How many burgers can you make from 4,400 industrial pallets of frozen meat? And how do they keep this place cleaner than my kitchen floor?

Dedicated last month, the Bishops Central Storehouse contains a two-year supply of food to support the Mormon church’s welfare system in the U.S. and Canada (primarily for church members in need) and its humanitarian program, which sends food, medical supplies and other necessities to the needy (of all faiths) world-wide.

In addition to goods from canned peaches to emergency generators, the facility also houses the church’s own trucking company, complete with 43 tractors and 98 trailers, as well as a one-year supply of fuel, parts and tires for the vehicles. Just in case.

The storehouse is not only a kind of physical marvel — it has been built to withstand an earthquake with a magnitude as high as 7.5 — but also a symbol of strength and self-sufficiency.

Launched during the Great Depression, the Mormon welfare system was designed by church leaders as a way to match the armies of the unemployed faithful with some of the nearby farms that needed temporary labor. As storehouse manager Richard Humpherys explains, goods and services were traded so that if a father needed food for his family he could get some in exchange for, say, repairing the fence of a widow down the road.

Mormons and U.S. Marines carry aid to landslide victims in central Philippines in 2006.

In 1936, Heber Grant, one of the church leaders, reported the reasoning behind this effort: “Our primary purpose was to set up insofar as it might be possible, a system under which the curse of idleness would be done away with, the evils of a dole abolished and independence, industry, thrift and self respect be once more established among our people. The aim of the Church is help the people to help themselves. Work is to be re-enthroned as the ruling principle of the lives of our Church membership.”

Over the ensuing decades, the church acquired farms and ranches of its own. It built grain silos and dairies and canneries to store and process the food. By the end of World War II, church leaders had enough in the way of reserves that they contacted President Truman to ask if they might assist in feeding and clothing the destitute across Europe. The president readily agreed.

Because it has members on the ground around the world, the church continues to be an important force in bringing food and supplies to the impoverished and victims of natural disasters. Local church leaders contact the central headquarters in Salt Lake City to tell them what is needed — gauze pads, school supplies, wheelchairs — and the church does its best to accommodate.

The Department of Defense recently visited the new storehouse to find out how the Mormons are able to mobilize so quickly, and there is an almost military sense of efficiency and strategy to the church’s efforts. When Hurricane Katrina struck, for instance, the church had positioned its fully loaded trucks in a kind of semicircle from South Carolina to Texas because no one knew how the storm was going to move. The church used reserves of fuel that it has placed around the country, and drivers were able to bring full tanker trucks into New Orleans, powering rescue vehicles and even chain saws to remove tree limbs.

Most of the inventory in the central storehouse, though, goes to supply more than 100 smaller storehouses around the country, plus hundreds of soup kitchens and homeless shelters of other religious communities around North America. Members of the Mormon church who find themselves in difficult circumstances can go to their local bishop and ask for aid.

The bishop then fills out an order allowing them to go and receive food from the local storehouse. Seventy percent of the items on the shelves are produced by the church itself and the remainder are purchased at steep wholesale discounts. According to Rick Foster, who oversees a smaller storehouse in Salt Lake City along with the cannery and dairy at Welfare Square (the original site of all the church’s welfare services), people depend on the food at the storehouse for an average of three to six months

That’s because the church’s goal is to help them get back on their feet as soon as possible. And the storehouse is only one of the tools at the disposal of local bishops, who may also refer members to other church programs, including employment counseling or family services. The bishop may even use money from a fund at his disposal to help pay for education, housing or utilities.

The labor behind the farming, food production, counseling and even cattle ranching is provided almost entirely by volunteers. Some are retired folks who come in every day. Other times an entire ward, or congregation, will come for the day, each of the members standing on an industrial assembly line packaging bread, processing cheese or sealing jars of apple sauce.

Regular tithing by church members helps pay for the facilities, but the primary source of capital support is the Mormons’ monthly fast, as church members are asked to contribute what they would have spent on two meals. Many give much more, says Mr. Foster.

It is safe to assume that Mr. Romney is among them. The tens of millions of dollars he has given the church over the years have raised suspicion in some quarters. What does the church do with all that cash? Wouldn’t that money have been better spent paying a higher income-tax rate? But his donations are supporting the kind of safety net that government can never hope to create. Jesus may have said the poor will always be with you, but he didn’t say Medicaid would.

Ms. Riley, a former Journal editor, writes frequently about religion.

Wall Street Journal article on 2/18/12: What the Mormons Know About Welfare


THE SHARIAH THREAT TO AMERICA

July 16, 2011

THE SHARIAH THREAT
by Kathy Jessup

A judge refuses a protection order for a woman raped by her Muslim husband, ruling the man’s abuse is allowed under Shariah law.

A cartoonist is in hiding after a tongue-in-cheek “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” promotion earned her a fatwa death order for violating a Shariah edict banning drawing the Muslim prophet’s image.

A Shariah-compliant investment fund is camouflaged as a charity and funnels more than $12 million to finance Hamas suicide bombers.

Not exactly shocking in some Muslim countries where strict adherence to centuries-old rules, based on Islamic teachings, shines a spotlight on stonings and beheadings.

But these occurred recently in the United States.

Now “honor killings,” publicly funded accommodations for Islamic prayer and billions in Wall Street investments linked to potentially dangerous terror activities are raising political and constitutional questions in America.

Can or should Shariah law co-exist with the Judeo-Christian foundations of U.S. jurisprudence and the Constitution? Will imposition of Islamic-based edicts, enabled by so-called religious tolerance and political correctness, open the door to radical forms of the religion in Western democracies?

A growing number of states are drafting constitutional amendments to prohibit state judges from applying Islamic or international law in deciding cases. But even the 70 percent of voters who passed Oklahoma’s measure in November hasn’t settled the issue for Sooners.

When the director of the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) challenged the amendment in court, a federal judge granted a preliminary injunction, ruling the amendment could be interpreted to single out Shariah law and discredit Islam, violating the First Amendment.

WHAT IS SHARIAH LAW?

Shariah (meaning “path” in Arabic) codifies the words, practices and teaching of Islam’s Prophet Mohammed, serving as a guide/law for everything from Muslims’ family and religious practices to financial transactions.

Several hundred years after the death of Mohammed, the prophet’s model living practices were assembled into the hadith, initially melding Islam and local customs. Various hadiths eventually developed into four schools of Sunni thought and one that guides Shiites. Each differs in the degree they draw from the Koran, Islamic thought and community practices.

Shariah identifies five hadd offenses, serious charges resolved by an Islamic judge. They are unlawful sexual intercourse (adultery or sex outside marriage), falsely accusing unlawful sexual intercourse, consuming wine (sometimes all alcohol), theft and highway robbery.

Punishments ordered for hadd crimes by conservative Shariah schools — stonings, executions, amputations and beatings — shock Western sensibilities. However, Ali Mazrui, of the Institute for Global Cultural Studies, says less severe penalties are more typically imposed.

Still, Islam has not uniformly banned so-called “honor killings,” genital mutilation, pre-teen marriages, polygamy, and divorce and inheritance rules that undercut the standing of women. Testimony from non-Muslims and even Muslim women is given less weight than that of Muslim men.

The size of a country’s Islamic population and its level of religious orthodoxy typically influence the degree to which Shariah law is inculcated in national legal codes.

Conservative Muslim countries including Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Yemen and Iran declare Islam the official religion and Shariah the source of law. In more secular Muslim countries where Islamists are the minority, Shariah has gradually gained legal legitimacy through local customs. Other countries, including Turkey and Azerbaijan, enforce separation of state and religion, sometimes resulting in political clashes.

Some countries operate a dual system where Shariah is applied to family law, while secular statutes govern criminal cases. For example, Britain introduced Shariah tribunals in 2008 that apply Islamic law to inheritance, marriage and divorce disputes where the parties all agree to the jurisdiction.

SHARIAH AND THE UNITED STATES

In 2009, Dalia Mogahed, an Obama administration adviser on Muslim affairs, told a British television audience that the West misunderstands Shariah law, calling its perceptions of Islamic tenants “oversimplified.”

But deaths, abuse and threats involving Muslim women in the United States and Canada have put a Western face on facets of Shariah that had been cloaked in long-standing Middle East practices.

Pakistani-born Muzzammil Hassan was convicted in February for beheading his wife inside the Buffalo, N.Y., television studio the couple had created to promote Islamic cultural understanding. Jurors didn’t buy Hassan’s story that he suffered spousal abuse and killed his wife in self-defense. Hassan had been served with divorce papers the week before, and his children testified he had been the abuser in the couple’s relationship.

In 2008, a New Jersey judge ruled Shariah permitted a Moroccan man to rape his Muslim wife, despite state law making it a crime. The New Jersey Appeals Court overturned that decision and remanded the case, finally allowing the woman to get a restraining order against her husband while she sought a divorce. The appeals court decision said neither Shariah law, giving a husband physical authority over his wife, nor Muslim beliefs on the role of women provided the man an exemption from criminal intent under U.S. statutes.

“[T]he [trial] judge determined to except defendant from the operation of the State’s statutes as a result of his religious beliefs,” the appeals judges wrote. “In doing so, the judge was mistaken.”
Irfan Aleem went to a Pakistani embassy and performed talaq in 2007, exercising Shariah provisions that he said allowed him to divorce his wife Farah by proclaiming his intention three times. Although married several decades earlier in Pakistan, the couple had lived in Maryland for 20 years. Irfan said Shariah allowed Farah no claim on a lucrative pension he would receive from his job with the World Bank.

Maryland judges didn’t agree, ruling the Shariah practices were “contrary to public policy of this state.” The decision set aside the divorce Irfan had quickly proclaimed and afforded Farah a right to claim marital property in a Maryland divorce.

The deaths of at least 10 women in the United States and Canada have been linked to so-called Islamic “honor killings” in the last seven years.

In 2004, a 14-year-old girl who had been raped in Newfoundland was strangled by her father and brother to “restore the family honor.” A 20-year-old daughter of Afghan parents was shot dead in 2006, allegedly because she had moved in with her fiancé before their wedding. The killer was her brother.

In Ontario, a 16-year-old was stabbed to death in 2007 by her father while her mother held her down. The teenager had reportedly fought with her parents over wearing a hijib, a Muslim head covering. In another Canadian case, three teenage girls were drowned in their father’s car in 2009. Also found dead was their father’s first wife, who relatives say he never divorced. The father, his current wife and the girls’ 18-year-old brother were all charged with first-degree murder. Relatives told the media the killings were precipitated by one daughter’s dating decisions.

A Muslim father in Texas shot his two teenage daughters, Amina and Sarah Said, to death in January 2008. The murders allegedly were prompted by the girls having “unsanctioned boyfriends.” Later that year, a Pakistani man beat his 25-year-old daughter to death in Atlanta, reportedly because she opposed her arranged marriage.

Rifqa Bary, an Ohio teenager, made headlines in 2009 when she fled to Florida and foster care, saying she feared she would be the victim of a Muslim “honor killing” for her decision to convert to Christianity. She continued her religious choice a year later when she turned 18.

In a situation much like the 2008 Muslim assassination order against Danish cartoonist Kurt Westergaard, Seattle cartoonist Molly Norris went into hiding at the FBI’s recommendation last spring after her “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” hit Facebook. A Seattle newspaper said Norris is “essentially wiping away her identity” in reaction to a fatwa urging her killing issued by Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical Muslim cleric connected to the Fort Hood killings, the attempted Christmas Day airline bombing over Detroit and the failed Times Square bombing.

And in February, radical Muslims announced plans to take their demand for American Shariah to the White House, calling for thousands of Islamists to rally on Pennsylvania Avenue March 3. But just hours before the rally was scheduled to begin, its organizer, British Muslim cleric Anjem Choudary, called it off, alleging the cause had been “distorted by the media.”

Choudary said the demonstration was merely “postponed until we gather even more Muslims;” no new rally date was announced.

In an online video statement, Choudary said Muslims are obligated to implement Shariah law “immediately, wherever we are in the world,” and he said America can reverse “poverty, child abuse, rape, robberies, theft, crime and anarchy-type scenarios” only after the United States embraces the Islamic code for living. In the meantime, Choudary predicted “the dollar will soon lose its status.”

“We believe the whole of the world must be under Shariah,” Choudary said. “America is not blessed by God. The American dream has become a nightmare.”

Other elements of America’s Shariah debate are more nuanced. Some, like CBSNews.com’s political reporter Brian Montopoli, believe Shariah fears are “overblown at best,” and Jeffry Goldberg, The Atlantic’s national correspondent, said, “A Martian takeover of New Jersey is more likely than the imposition of a caliphate, or of Muslim law, on America.”

Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for CAIR, says the enjoined Oklahoma amendment is “an indication of growing anti-Muslim sentiment.” Hooper said CAIR has “not found any conflict between what a Muslim needs to do to practice their faith and the Constitution or any other American laws. We are, in fact, relying on the Constitution as our last line of defense.”

But conservative Jewish blogger Pamela Geller delivers an aggressive “creeping Shariah” warning: “It’s a drip, drip, drip, drip, drip. [In] the mosqueing of the workplace where you’re imposing prayer times on union contracts, non-Muslim workers have to lengthen their day. It’s wrong.”

Consider the political reaction Americans would have seen if these Muslim accommodations had instead been made for Christians:

* The Christian Science Monitor reported a California elementary school made accommodations when it absorbed Muslim students from a shuttered charter school, including revising its instructional schedule to add a 15-minute “recess” after lunch to allow Muslim students to pray in a separate room. The school district’s attorney defended it, saying “the Muslim faith requires specificity of prayer obligations … that most other religions do not,” a claim questioned by even some Muslims. Pork also was removed from school-lunch menus, according to media reports.

* In Massachusetts, where a firehouse was ordered to take down a “Merry Christmas” greeting, public middle school students took a “cultural diversity” field trip to a local mosque, where the boys participated in Islamic prayers while girls were excluded.

These public school incidents are not isolated instances.

Try getting Christian prayer in any school and have the ACLU all over you….but nothing is said re; Muslim special privilege.

* Starting about two years ago, school attorneys have been asking more and more questions about accommodations for Muslim students,” said Lisa Soronen, senior staff attorney for the National School Boards Association.

* Four Christian evangelists attending a July Muslim cultural festival in Dearborn, Mich., were arrested for “disorderly conduct to ensure they did not provoke violence from others attending,” according to a Detroit media report. The four said they were attempting to engage in a dialogue about faith. Shariah law prohibits Christians from engaging Muslims about Christianity.

* The University of Michigan-Dearborn, where about 10 percent of students are Muslim, spent $25,000 to install two foot-washing stations on campus to accommodate ablutions before Islamic daily prayers. The university said it is one of about 18 U.S. higher education institutions providing the unusual facilities, calling its decision “a reflection of our values of respect, tolerance, and safe accommodation of student needs.”

The Michigan Civil Liberties Union mounted no challenge, saying the foot baths have “no [religious] symbolic value.”

“They’re in a regular restroom and could be just as useful to a janitor filling up buckets, or someone coming off the basketball court as to Muslim students,” said Kary Moss, MCLU director.

* Thomas More Law Center, a conservative, public-interest law firm headquartered in Michigan, is challenging the constitutionality of federal bailout money to investment firm AIG, claiming AIG’s involvement in Shariah-compliant financing violated the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. A federal district judge in Michigan ruled that despite the fact the bailout gave the federal government an 80 percent ownership in AIG, there was no evidence the government’s money had funded “religious indoctrination.” And if there were evidence, the court said the $153 million of federal bailout money used to support Shariah compliance was an insignificant portion of the total $47.5 billion the government provided AIG.

That ruling is being appealed.

THE POWER OF MONEY

Conservative author Dick Morris says airplanes may have taken down the Twin Towers, but he predicts Shariah-compliant investing of billions in Western financial markets has the potential to “hijack our institutions, our social policies and ultimately our values in the name of Islamic rule.”

Huge oil profits and unease with their own Middle Eastern financial institutions brought Islamic investors to Wall Street in the 1990s in search of special funds that would meet Shariah restrictions. But it was complicated turf for bankers who knew investing but not Shariah.

Enter Sheikh Muhammad Taqi Usmani, a former Pakistani Shariah Appellate Court justice, hired by Dow Jones in 1999 to help establish a process that could attract trillions of investment dollars, generating handsome commissions and agency earnings.

In just a decade, most major U.S. and European investment firms have retained Shariah advisors and paid them millions. Those advisors assure Muslim investors their gains are not connected to interest charges, pork farming, alcohol, pornography or Western defense industries — all activities prohibited by Shariah.

But are those adviser fees — paid to highly placed Muslims — or the billions of dollars in “donations” financial institutions must contribute to specified Islamic “charities” in exchange for an investment’s Shariah stamp of approval actually bankrolling deadly extremist activities? Morris followed the money in his 2009 book “Catastrophe,” reporting that the U.S. government shut down at least three of the largest charities for financing terrorism.

In a 2008 article titled “Jihad Comes to Wall Street,” Alex Alexiev, vice president for research at the Center for Security Policy, called Shariah-compliant investing “an essential part of radical Islam’s efforts to insinuate itself into Western societies in order to destroy them from within.”

It’s also been a bumpy road for some of those hired consultants. Dow Jones severed ties with Usmani after the Center for Security Policy detailed some of Usmani’s writings, including one that urged Muslims living in the West to “conduct violent Jihad against the infidels at every opportunity.”

The CSP identified another paid Shariah investment advisor, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, as a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

According to Morris, Shariah-compliant funds must donate a small percentage of annual earnings to Islamic charities designated by the advisory boards. Those amounts are not inconsequential. For example, a typical 2.5 percent contribution can amount to billions of dollars.

And if a Shariah-compliant fund is found to have earnings from an outlawed investment activity, the advisors can “purify” those gains by donating more to the approved charities. Morris calls some of the charities “thinly veiled fronts for terrorist organizations such as Hamas and Hezbollah.”

Is the lure of trillions of dollars from Muslim portfolios strong enough to open civil law to expanding Shariah influences?

Consider Great Britain where, just a few years ago, then-Prime Minister Gordon Brown said he wanted London to become the world’s Islamic-finance capital. Britain’s most senior judge subsequently proclaimed the country’s Muslims can use “Islamic legal principles” as long as the punishments and divorce rulings comply with English law.

According to Morris, that’s already made U.K. Muslims eligible for extra benefits if they have more than one wife, even though polygamy — allowed under Shariah law — is illegal in Britain.

TOLERANCE: AN ASSET OR A WEDGE?

Janet Levy, a prolific writer on Islam and national security, asks why Islam “is sacred, supreme and beyond reproach” in the United States, while other religions are “freely criticized, lampooned in cartoons and denigrated in artwork?” She concludes America is already embracing de facto Shariah law.

“Our uniquely American virtues of tolerance and freedom have worked against us to produce intolerance and oppression,” Levy says. “This has led to the stealthy introduction of Shariah law and a climate in which criticisms of Mohammed and Islam are no longer possible without serious repercussions.”

Are political correctness and moves to cool the osmosis of the American melting pot fundamentally changing us? Is the arena of ideas — where Americans have historically tested competing beliefs — being shut down so as not to offend?

Recall 1960 when Americans considered it fair game to question Democrat John F. Kennedy about whether he would look first to his Catholicism or to the Constitution in making presidential decisions. Former Massachusetts Republican Gov. Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith has come under scrutiny during his political campaigns, sans shouts of profiling.

European nations that have led the West’s embrace of Shariah law have recently begun to retreat from their policies of “multiculturalism,” suggesting failure to maintain a single national identity has actually cultivated Islamic extremism in countries like Britain.

In a February speech at the Munich Security Conference, British Prime Minister David Cameron argued European “multiculturalism has been a failure” that’s fostered Islamic extremism, adding that the West has been “cautious, frankly even fearful” of standing up to it.

“We have even tolerated these segregated communities behaving in ways that run completely counter to our values,” Cameron said. “This hands-off tolerance has only served to reinforce the sense that not enough is shared. … What we see — and what we see in so many European countries — is a process of radicalization.”

Something also gets jumbled in the translation when East/West cultures talk about democracy and its relationship with religion.

In 2008 polling conducted by the University of Maryland’s Program on International Policy Attitudes, 82 percent of Egyptians said a democratic political system should govern their nation. At the same time, 73 percent said they supported stronger application of Islamic law in Egypt.

Of those, 68 percent said Egypt’s government should apply Shariah law to regulate moral behavior; 64 percent supported using traditional punishments like stoning for adulterers; 62 percent want the government to police women’s dress; and 59 percent said Shariah rules should be used to provide for Egypt’s poor.

So what does this all mean for Shariah in America?

The U.S. Constitution does not assign superiority to a particular religion. However, the idea that liberty is man’s God-given — not government-granted — right is a Judeo-Christian principle. America is exceptional because the people — regardless of how or whether they embrace God — allow government limited power.

America does not vest all authority in a theocratic government, where law and even daily life is dictated by a single religious code. But that does not mean the United States is Islamophobic, says New Jersey blogger George Berkin.

“[S]upporting the [Oklahoma amendment] does not make one anti-Islamic. But not being anti-Islamic does not mean that we should not insist that American legal principles — not foreign ones — apply here.”

Kathy Jessup is an award-winning, veteran journalist in Michigan whose writing career has focused on government, politics and criminal justice.

This article appeared March 24th, 2011 in Townhall Magazine,
http://www.israelunitycoalition.org/news/?p=6533

Top 10 Predictions for 2011

January 15, 2011

With all the problems the World is facing, it can be unsettling to the mind.

Today, I will share with you ten predictions that are true!

1.  The Bible will still have all the answers.
2.  Prayer will still be the most powerful thing on Earth…
3.  The Holy Spirit will still move.
4.  God will still honor the praises of His people.
5.  There will still be God-anointed preaching.
6.  There will still be singing of praise to God.
7.  God will still pour out blessings upon His people.
8.  There will still be room at the Cross.
9.  Jesus will still love you.

10. Jesus will still save the lost when they come to Him.

Isn’t It Great to Remember Who Is Really in Control, and that; “the Word of the Lord endures forever.” (1 Peter 1:25)

I hope you found this encouraging!  I sure did.

Sometimes we need the reminder of just “WHO” is really in control.

Pray for our president

June 14, 2010

From a minister’s wife –

We were in slow-moving traffic the other day and the car in front of us had an Obama bumper sticker on it. It read: “Pray for Obama. Psalm 109:8”.

My husband’s Bible was lying on the dash board, he got it, opened it up to the scripture and read it. He started laughing and laughing. Then he read it to me. I couldn’t believe what it said. I had a good laugh, too.

Psalm 109:8 “Let his days be few; and let another take his place of leadership.”

At last – I can voice a Biblical prayer for our president!

Look it up – it is word for word! Let us all bow our heads and pray.

Obama’s Muslim motives

April 24, 2010

This makes perfect sense and is easily verified for those skeptics who still believe in “Change.”  Shepard Smith, Fox News

If you check Obama’s last trip overseas, his wife left just after their visit to France as stated below.  She has yet to accompany him to any Arab country. Think about it.

This email was sent to me from a very good and reliable friend. The pieces of the puzzle just keep on coming together!

Travel for Obama

I was at a Blockbusters renting videos, and as I was going along the wall, there was a video called “Obama”. There were two men next to me.  We talked about Obama. These guys were Arabs and I asked them why they thought Michele Obama headed home following her visit in France instead of traveling on to Saudi Arabia and Turkey with her husband.  They told me she couldn’t go to Saudi Arabia, Turkey, or Iraq.  I said “Laura Bush went to Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Dubai.” They said that Obama is a Muslim, and by Muslim law he would not be allowed to bring his wife into countries that accept Shari’a Law.

I just thought it was interesting that two Arabs at Blockbusters accept the idea that we’re being led by a Muslim who follows the Islamic creed.  They also said that’s the reason he bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia. It was a signal to the Muslim world.

Just thought you would like to know.

***************
When I received this email it made sense to me, but there were also a couple blank spots. Thus, I sent it to a friend who is a Middle Eastern Scholar and expert, Dr. Jim Murk. Here is his explanation that states a little clearer what the Arabs at Blockbuster were saying.

“An orthodox Muslim man would never take his wife on a politically oriented trip to any nation which practices Shari’a law, which includes Saudi Arabia.  This is true and it is why Obama left Michelle in Europe or at home when he went to especially Arab countries. He knows Muslim protocol; this included his bowing to the Saudi king.”

“Obama is regarded as a Muslim in these countries simply because he was born to a Muslim father. Note that he has downplayed his Christianity — even spoke of his Muslim faith with George Stephanopoulus — by not publicly joining a Christian church in D.C., but simply attending the chapel or services at Camp David.  He also downplayed the fact that the USA was a Christian country and said, unbelievably, that it was one of the largest Muslim nations in the world, which is nonsense. He has also publicly taken the part of the Palestinians in the conflict with Israel.  Finally he ignored the National Day of Prayer.  He is bad news! He is God’s judgment on America.”    Jim Murk

Thus once again ACTIONS speak louder than words. Check out Obama’s. Do they appear treasonous to you or is it just millions of us who think so?  God help us!

Have you wondered why Barack Hussein Obama has insisted that the U.S. Attorney General hold the trials for the 9-11 Murdering Muslims Terrorists in Civilian Courts as Common Criminals instead of as Terrorists who attacked the United State of America?

Think about this: If the Muslim Terrorists are tried in Military Tribunals, convicted, and sentenced to DEATH by the Military Tribunal, BY LAW of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, as President of the United States, would be required to SIGN their Death Warrants before they could be EXECUTED. He would not be required to sign the death warrants if sentenced to death by a Civilian Court.

Think about the Muslim Jihadist, Major Hassan who slaughtered his fellow soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas.  Major Hassan did not want to go to Afghanistan and be part of anything that could lead to the deaths of fellow Muslims.  He stated that Muslims could not and should not KILL FELLOW MUSLIMS.

Is the motive for Barack Hussein Obama’s decision to make sure he doesn’t have to sign the death warrants for the Muslim Terrorists? Why would he, as President of the United States, not want to sign the death warrants for Muslim Terrorists who attacked the United States and MURDERED over 3,000 innocent United States Citizens on 9/11? Could it be that he is FORBIDDEN by his RELIGION to have anything to do with the execution of Muslims?

Think about that!!! Join me in opening our ears, eyes and minds to what THEIR (Muslim) President is doing.

PLEASE pass this along to your friends if you agree that this sounds reasonable.  If not, than just delete and go on to other things.

John W. King, Attorney at Law

Angels Explained By Children

April 15, 2010

I only know the names of two angels, Hark and Harold. Gregory, age 5

Everybody’s got it all wrong. Angels don’t wear halos anymore. I forget why, but scientists are working on it.   Olive, age 9

It’s not easy to become an angel! First, you die. Then you go to Heaven, and then there’s still the flight training to go through. And then you got to agree to wear those angel clothes. Matthew, age 9

Angels work for God and watch over kids when God has to go do something else. Mitchell, age 7

My guardian angel helps me with math, but he’s not much good for science. Henry, age 8

Angels don’t eat, but they drink milk from Holy Cows!!!

Jack, age 6

Angels talk all the way while they’re flying you up to heaven. The main subject is where you went wrong before you got dead. Daniel, age 9

When an angel gets mad, he takes a deep breath and counts to ten. And when he lets out his breath again, somewhere there’s a tornado. Reagan, age 10

Angels have a lot to do and they keep very busy. If you lose a tooth, an angel comes in through your window and leaves money under your pillow. Then when it gets cold, angels go south for the winter. Sara, age 6

Angels live in cloud houses made by God and his son, who’s a very good carpenter. Jared, age 8

All angels are girls because they gotta wear dresses and boys didn’t go for it. Antonio, age 9

My angel is my grandma who died last year. She got a big head start on helping me while she was still down here on earth.
Ashley, age 9

Some of the angels are in charge of helping heal sick animals and pets. And if they don’t make the animals get better, they help the child get over it.  Vicki, age 8

GOD Is Busy

February 20, 2010

GOD Is Busy

If you don’t know GOD, don’t make stupid remarks!!!!!!

A United States Marine was attending some college courses between assignments. He had completed missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. One of the courses had a professor who was an avowed atheist, and a member of the ACLU.

One day the professor shocked the class when he came in.  He looked to the ceiling and flatly stated, GOD if you are real then I want you to knock me off this platform. I’ll give you exactly 15 minutes.’ The lecture room fell silent. You could hear a pin drop. Ten minutes went by and the professor proclaimed, ‘Here I am GOD, I’m still waiting.’

It got down to the last couple of minutes when the Marine got out of his chair, went up to the professor, and cold-cocked him; knocking him off the platform. The professor was out cold.  The Marine went back to his seat and sat there, silently.

The other students were shocked and stunned, and sat there looking on in silence. The professor eventually came to, noticeably shaken, looked at the Marine and asked, ‘What in the world is the matter with you? ‘Why did you do that?’

The Marine calmly replied, ‘GOD was too busy today protecting America ‘s soldiers who are protecting your right to say stupid stuff and act like an idiot. So He sent me.’

The classroom erupted in cheers!

THIS IS GOOD, KEEP IT GOING!

The Road to Heaven – an inspirational story

February 5, 2010

A man and his dog were walking along a road.

The man was enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead.

He remembered dying, and that the dog walking beside him had been dead for years. He wondered where the road was leading them.

After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road. It looked like fine marble…

At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch that glowed in the sunlight.

When he was standing before it, he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother-of-pearl, and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold.

He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.

When he was close enough, he called out, ‘Excuse me, where are we?’

‘This is Heaven, sir,’ the man answered.

‘Wow! Would you happen to have some water?’ the man asked.

‘Of course, sir. Come right in, and I’ll have some ice water brought right up.’

The man gestured, and the gate began to open.’ Can my friend,’ gesturing toward his dog, ‘come in, too?’ the traveler asked.

‘I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t accept pets.’

The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the road and continued the way he had been going with his dog.


After another long walk, and at the top of another long hill, he came to a dirt road leading through a farm gate that looked as if it had never been closed.

There was no fence.


As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside, leaning against a tree and reading a book….

‘Excuse me!’ he called to the man. ‘Do you have any water?’

‘Yeah, sure, there’s a pump over there, come on in.’
‘How about my friend here?’ the traveler gestured to the dog.

‘There should be a bowl by the pump,’ said the man.

They went through the gate, and sure enough, there was an old-fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it.


The traveler filled the water bowl and took a long drink himself, then he gave some to the dog.

When they were full, he and the dog walked back toward the man who was standing by the tree.

‘What do you call this place?’ the traveler asked.

‘This is Heaven,’ he answered.

‘Well, that’s confusing,’ the traveler said.

‘The man down the road said that was Heaven, too.’

‘Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly gates? Nope. That’s Hell.’

‘Doesn’t it make you mad for them to use your name like that?’

‘No, we’re just happy that they screen out the folks who would leave their best friends behind.’

***
Soooo, Now you see, sometimes, we wonder why friends keep forwarding stuff to us without writing a word. Maybe this will explain it.

When you are very busy, but still want to keep in touch, guess what you do? You forward emails.

When you have nothing to say, but still want to keep contact, you forward jokes.

When you have something to say, but don’t know what, and don’t know how…. you forward stuff.

A ‘forward lets you know that you are still remembered, you are still important, you are still loved, you are still cared for.

So, next time if you get a ‘forward’, don’t think that you’ve been sent just another forwarded joke, but that you’ve been thought of today and your friend on the other end of your computer wanted to send you a smile.


You are welcome at my water bowl anytime!!

The Pope visits Alaska – humor

January 27, 2010

The Pope took a couple of days off to visit the rugged mountains of Alaska for some sightseeing. He was cruising along the campground in the Pope Mobile when there was a frantic commotion just at the edge of the woods.

A helpless Democrat, wearing sandals, shorts, a ‘Vote for Obama’ hat and a ‘Save the Trees’ t-shirt, was screaming while struggling frantically and thrashing around trying to free himself from the grasp of a 10-foot grizzly bear.

As the Pope watched in horror, a group of Republican loggers with ‘Go Sarah’ t-Shirts came racing up. One quickly fired a 44 magnum into the bear’s chest. The other two reached up and pulled the bleeding, semiconscious Democrat from the bear’s grasp. Then using long clubs, the three loggers finished off the bear and two of them threw it onto the bed of their truck while the other tenderly placed the injured Democrat in the back seat.

As they prepared to leave, the Pope summoned them to come over. ‘I give you my blessing for your brave actions!’ he told them. ‘I heard there was a bitter hatred between Republican loggers and Democratic environmental activists, but now I’ve seen with my own eyes that this is not true.’

As the Pope drove off, one logger asked his buddies ‘Who was that guy?’

‘It was the Pope,’ another replied. ‘He’s in direct contact with Heaven and has access to all wisdom.’

‘Well,’ the logger said, ‘he may have access to all wisdom, but he doesn’t know squat about bear hunting! By the way, is the bait still alive, or do we need to go back to California and get another one?

Independence Day Quiz

January 14, 2010

Supposedly 96% of all High School Seniors FAILED this test….
AND if that’s not bad enough, 50+% of all individuals over 50 did too!!

Take the test and be surprised at what we don’t know.

TOAST.net Internet Service Independence Day Quiz

1. What is the title of the National Anthem?

A – Oh, Say Can You See C – America the Beautiful
B – God Bless America D – The Star Spangled Banner
2. Which of the following rights is guaranteed by the first amendment?

A- Right to Bear Arms C- Freedom of Religion
B- Right to Vote D – All of the Above
3. What is the title of the head of a city government?

A – Mayor C – Chancellor
B – Governor D – Chairman of the Board
4. Who has the ability to declare war?

A – The President C – The Joint Chiefs
B – The Secretary of Defense D – The Congress
5. How many full terms may a Senator serve?

A – 1 C – 4
B – 2 D – No term limits for Senators
6. How many full terms can a President serve?

A – 1 C – 4
B – 2 D – There are no term limits for Pres.
7. How many years is a full term for a Representative?

A – 1 C – 4
B – 2 D – 6
8. Which amendment sets the minimum voting age to 18?

A – 1st C – 18th
B – 19th D – 26th
9. Who becomes President if both the President and Vice President die?

A – The Speaker of the House C – The Chief Justice
B – The Secretary of Defense D – The First Lady
10. On July 4th, 1776 we declared Independence from whom?

A – Germany C – Spain
B – Great Britain D – Rome
11. How many branches of government do we have?

A – 1 C – 3
B – 2 D – zero
12. Which is part of the Judicial branch at the federal level?

A – The Supreme Court C – The Senate
B – The Congress D – The Presidential Cabinet
13. Who elects the President of the United States?

A – The House of Representatives C – The Senate
B – The Electoral College D – The State Governors
14. How many states are there?

A – 10 C – 50
B – 13 D – 100
15. How many stripes are there on the American Flag?

A – 10 C – 50
B – 13 D – 100
16. Who was the President of the United States during the civil war?

A – Abraham Lincoln C – Ulysses S Grant
B – George Washington D – Lyndon B Johnson
17. Who is the current President of the United States?

A – Bill Clinton C – Colin Powell
B – Barack Obama D – Dick Cheney
18. Who is the current Vice President of the United States?

A – Bill Clinton C – Colin Powell
B – Hillary Clinton D – Joe Biden
19. Why did the Pilgrims come to America?

A – to establish a trade route with India C – to establish a new nation
B – to set up fur trade with the Natives D – to find religious freedom
20. How many total Senators are there?

A – 10 C – 50
B – 13 D – 100

Now for some Advanced Questions!
21. The Constitution has how many Amendments?

A – 23 C – 31
B – 27 D – 33
22. How many Amendments have been proposed officially by Congress but never ratified?

A – None C – 6
B – 1 D – 12
23. Which of these amendments is a ratified and current amendment?

A – Declaring it illegal to desecrate the American Flag
B – Equality of rights regardless of Gender
C – Restricting marriage in all States to be between a man and a woman
D – Prohibiting the importing of liquor into States where it is illegal
24. In what year was the last amendment ratified?

A – 1868 C – 1961
B – 1920 D – 1992
25. What is the Official Language of the United States?

A – None C – English
B – Latin D – Esperanto
26. Who was the first Vice President of the United States?

A – George Washington C – Thomas Jefferson
B – John Adams D – Andrew Jackson
27. Who said “Give me liberty or give me death?”

A – Nathan Hale C – John Wilkes Booth
B – Patrick Henry D – Thomas Paine
28. How many Presidents were assassinated while in office?

A – 1 C – 4
B – 2 D – 6
29. Which of these Presidents was born in Texas?

A – Dwight D. Eisenhower C – Ronald Reagan
B – Richard Nixon D – George W. Bush
30. How many Presidents have been impeached?

A – None C – 2
B – 1 D – 4

Click the link below to take the quiz and see how much you know, or don’t know! At the end of the quiz click submit to get the answers.   Good Luck!

http://games.toast.net/independence/

Click here to compare your scores with others in your age and state!

Question Your Answer Correct Answer
1 What is the title of the National Anthem? D D: The Star Spangled Banner
2 Which of the following rights is guaranteed by the first amendment? C C: Freedom of Religion
3 What is the title of the head of a city government? A A: Mayor
4 Who has the ability to declare war? D D: The Congress
5 How many full terms may a Senator serve? D D: No term limits for Senators
6 How many full terms can a President serve? B B: 2
7 How many years is a full term for a Representative? C B: 2
8 Which amendment sets the minimum voting age to 18? D D: 26th
9 Who becomes President if both the President and Vice President die? A A: The Speaker of the House
10 On July 4th, 1776 we declared Independence from whom? B B: Great Britain
11 How many branches of government do we have? C C: 3
12 Which is part of the Judicial branch at the federal level? D A: The Supreme Court
13 Who elects the President of the United States? B B: The Electoral College
14 How many states are there? C C: 50
15 How many stripes are there on the American Flag? B B: 13
16 Who was the President of the United States during the civil war? C A: Abraham Lincoln
17 Who is the current President of the United States? B B: Barack Obama
18 Who is the current Vice President of the United States? D D: Joe Biden
19 Why did the Pilgrims come to America? D D: to find religious freedom
20 How many total Senators are there? D D: 100
21 The Constitution has how many Amendments? B B: 27
22 How many Amendments have been proposed officially by Congress but never ratified? D C: 6
23 Which of these amendments is a ratified and current amendment? A D: Prohibiting the importing of liquor into States where it is illegal
24 In what year was the last amendment ratified? D D: 1992
25 What is the Official Language of the United States? C A: None
26 Who was the first Vice President of the United States? B B: John Adams
27 Who said “Give me liberty or give me death?” B B: Patrick Henry
28 How many Presidents were assassinated while in office? B C: 4
29 Which of these Presidents was born in Texas? D A: Dwight D. Eisenhower
30 How many Presidents have been impeached? B C: 2

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