I really hate saying that. But I’ve watched political and religious events for decades, and what happens today isn’t something which just sprang up, it’s something brewing for a long time.
Outrage appeared this week at Houston’s attempt to subpoena sermons and notes of pastors, who might have said something the city didn’t like.
Sadly, it’s neither an isolated event, nor the only issue on the table, but let’s deal with Houston’s mistake first.
Amid outrage from religious groups, Mayor Annise Parker and City Attorney David Feldman on Wednesday appeared to back off a subpoena request for the sermons of certain ministers opposed to the city’s equal rights ordinance, with Parker calling it overly broad.
Notice they didn’t say wrong, just overly broad. It’s a typical non-apology apology.
They passed the blame to an outside attorney’s office, with the mayor saying she hadn’t seen the document until this week.
“Let me just say that one word in a very long legal document which I know nothing about and would never have read and I’m vilified coast to coast,” Parker said. “It’s a normal day at the office for me.”
Sorry ma’am, you’re (supposed to be) in charge of these people. They work in your name, on your behalf. Failure for you to know what actions your people take does not absolve you of responsibility, and trying to portray yourself as the victim is pathetic.
Whatever happened to “the buck stops here”?
Looking at the bigger picture, not only this episode, but what happens all over the world — eliminating a group you deem “undesirable” always — always — uses the same methods.
To silence a group, follow these simple steps:
- Identify the group.
- Vilify the group.
- Pass laws to restrict the group.
- Enforce the law.
In Houston’s case, they’ve already accomplished 1—3, but had to backtrack once the effort at the last step was noticed.
Backtrack, but not repent or admit wrong.
It’s a new tactic: lawfare — using legal processes to silence people you don’t think should speak.
Consider your local pastor sued or brought to trial for something a government entity doesn’t like.
How many could spend tens (or hundreds) of thousands of dollars defending against obvious violations of the Constitution?
In the new lawfare strategy, deep-pocketed groups know they’ll lose at trial, but that’s not the point. The point is to make it so painful, so expensive, so burdensome to exercise your rights you simply won’t do so.
The right may still exist on paper, but it’s of no practical use.
Never forget, rights do not come from the government. They’re God-given, and government should protect those rights.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.—That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed …
A tragic misunderstanding swept the country in the last few years (mainly because so few people ever read the founding documents) — people believe government grants rights.
Not so. Those rights are granted by God, and government should protect those rights.
- Free Speech
- Freedom of religion
- Freedom in your personal effects and papers
People might celebrate the city of Houston has (at least temporarily) backed down, but know this: groups desiring to silence Christians and others will never stop, admit wrong, or change course.
They’re in it for the long haul to fundamentally transform the country (and the world) — that’s not tin-foil hat paranoia, they openly shout it for all to hear.
They simply wait until another opportunity presents itself, and when it does, the protest becomes smaller as people become less vigilant.
I’ve been warning about these things for decades, and sadly few have heeded the warning.
In other news, DEA agents impersonated a woman with information found on her phone, creating a Facebook profile and using it in an attempt to entrap drug dealers.
At the very least, those DEA agents violated several laws, in addition to putting her life in danger.
- Published photos without holding copyright.
- Identify theft.
Incredibly, the DEA in court defended the practice, saying the woman consented to these illegal activities by allowing the police to look at her phone.
Imagine if you downloaded music on your phone illegally. When brought to court, you said the artist and record label consented to your posting songs on your web site, because you looked at the CD in the store.
How far do you think you’d get with that?
These events are not tinfoil hat paranoia, simply read what goes on. All the parties admit what they did, they simply don’t think they did anything wrong, Constitution be dammed.
These activities are not conducted in the shadows, it’s all a matter of public record.
If you are a Bible believing Christian, you will increasingly become more and more reviled, and more and more targeted for silence, ironically all in the name of “tolerance.”
History demonstrates what most of the world has endured, for most of the last 2,000 years. What makes the United States immune?
As for myself, I’ll continue to do exactly what I’ve done — teach the Word — for as long as possible.
You must decide for yourself how you’ll respond — as history shows, these things usually get worse.
… because it’s 2:59AM