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Some Things Said… (December 07)

Gibbons, 54, had faced 40 lashes and six months in prison if she had been found guilty of the more serious “crime” of inciting religious hatred. –excerpted from an article by Lukas I. Alpert in the New York Post 11.30.07

[Ed. Some of the more pious of the Islamic fascists have been calling for the teacher’s execution. And all this, mind you, from a country whose leaders and citizens are starving one another or just outright killing anyone that does not bow to Mohammed and the followers of his godless and false religion.]

“Expelled” No More…

“If there is no God, everything is permitted.” – Fyodor Dostoevsky, Russian novelist

In a world without God, where people exist simply as highly evolved animals without souls, where do we find order, morals, conscience and law? We do not. If God is a myth, as many evolutionists claim, why then are all things not lawful? Evolution implies meaningless existence. Evolution implies chaos. There is, however, order in this universe, patterns and sequence, mathematical law and formula – all used and relied upon by scientists and students daily.

A large body of evidence for “intelligent design” exists. Even common sense suggests that natural and empirical laws are linked to an intelligent designer. Reasonable people can evaluate the concept and the evidence to back it up. But, the idea of intelligent design is so feared by scientists who cling with blind faith to the increasingly challenged theory of evolution that the mere mention of it in most public schools and universities is deeply ridiculed.

“EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed” does not hit theaters until February 2008, but the buzz is already circulating about this upcoming Ben Stein (of Ferris Bueller fame) feature documentary. The movie’s website, www.expelledthemovie.com, describes Stein’s quest as one “to expose the suppression by science’s anti-theist elite and unveil new scientific facts that may suggest evidence of intelligent design in the universe.” The film follows Stein as he interviews credentialed professors and scientists who have lost opportunities to publish, been denied tenure, lost jobs and suffered ruined reputations over their acceptance of intelligent design as a credible scientific model for the origin of the species…

Through EXPELLED, “they” (proponents of intelligent design) are refusing to “shut up.” The producers’ aim is not only to turn out a film that caters to the underserved, yet substantial, faith and family audience, but also to ignite discussion over the stronghold of elitist Darwinism in the scientific community.

Paul Lauer, president of Motive Entertainment and producer of EXPELLED, stated, “We hope that this film can do for the debate about evolution what An Inconvenient Truth has done for the debate about global warming.” The desire is to expose the suspicious slant in academia denying the viability of intelligent design… –excerpted from an article by Anna Higgins and Marian Ward on the Concerned Women for America website at www.cwfa.org 11.24.07

Atheists Given Another Shot At The Pledge

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Dec. 4 will again hear a challenge by Michael Newdow to the Pledge of Allegiance and its phrase “under God.” Newdow won his prior lawsuit against the pledge until the Supreme Court, perhaps to avoid public outrage in the 2004 presidential election year, tossed out his case on a procedural technicality.

Newdow’s first case caused a national uproar when he initially prevailed, but Congress failed to seize the day by withdrawing jurisdiction from the courts over this issue. Instead, Congress took away jurisdiction from courts over lawsuits against gun manufacturers and, at the urging of former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., over lawsuits by environmentalists against clearing brush in South Dakota.

The 9th Circuit is notoriously hostile to religion, so it could give us another anti-pledge decision. Atheism has spread in influence to where it controls many federal courts, many public schools and now even Hollywood, with the atheistic movie “The Golden Compass” promoted for Christmastime entertainment.

Classical music with religious names was banned at graduation by Everett School District No. 2 in Washington State. The school ordered that only “secular” music would be allowed even though there were no lyrics or words spoken, and a federal court held against the students.

Judge Robert S. Lasnik, who was appointed to the bench by President Clinton in 1998, wrote the decision. Lasnik was the same judge who struck down a Washington state law banning video games that demonstrated how to kill policemen and wrote in his decision that violent video games are “as much entitled to the protection of free speech as the best of literature.”

The intolerance of atheists and their allies has now placed the “best of” music off limits to public school performers. Goodbye to many of the great works of Bach, Haydn, Handel, Beethoven and Mozart…

Atheism has been growing ever since the Supreme Court censored school prayer in Engel v. Vitale in 1962. That decision failed to cite a single precedent as authority.

The high court held decades ago that free speech includes prayer, yet lower courts continue to drive it from public places. In Faith Center v. Glover, the 9th Circuit affirmed the exclusion of a Christian group from using a public library because some aspects of the group’s speech might be described as worship… –excerpted from an article by Phyllis Schlafy, from an unidentified site, as submitted by Mark Zaveson, 11.28.07

Anti-Christian Crusade – Beowulf is the latest installment in Hollywood’s attempt to reconfigure history.

By now, the oft-recurring negative portrayals of Christianity in major Hollywood movies have become hackneyed and predictable. The recent rendition of Beowulf only reinforced this trend. The same subtle depictions and motifs present in movies from decades past were once again present, a favorite being the attempt to try to depict pagans as “open-minded” and “free-spirited” peoples, or, quite anachronistically, as medieval counterparts to the modern, secular, liberal. The idea being that pagan peoples – unencumbered by the suffocating forces of Christianity – were/are happy, passionate folk, able to live life to the fullest.

Beowulf’s opening scene depicts King Hrothgar and his thanes in an utterly bacchanalian setting: carried in a litter, privates barely covered in a loose toga, inebriated and cheery, Hrothgar declares to the festive crowd that it’s time to party and “fornicate.” (As to how well-grounded these representations are to the original text, see John Miller’s Beowulf the Movie Star.) Simultaneously, a sullen (and we soon find out cowardly and conniving) Unferth, his adviser, perfunctorily explains to a bystander the advisability of embracing Christianity – all while urinating. When Unferth later suggests to the convivial Hrothgar that perhaps he and the people should consider praying to the “new god,” Christ, a sobered up Hrothgar rejects the suggestion with disdain. Finally, this same Unferth, the only advocate for Christianity in the movie, just so happens to also be the only one in the pagan kingdom who not only keeps, but constantly beats, a slave – an oblique reminder of the tired charge that Christianity is somehow responsible for slavery.

Released two years ago, The Kingdom of Heaven, which is set in the Crusading era, followed precisely the same anti-Christian paradigm. The opening scene portrays a callous priest gleefully informing the hero of the story, Balian (heroic, we ultimately find out, primarily because he’s wary of Christianity) that his suicide wife is doomed to hell (while he proceeds to steal her cross – not for its intrinsic value, of course, but because it’s made of silver). All the “bad guys,” such as the Templars, have big red crosses painted on their tunics. Of course, the fact that these same red crosses still adorn hospitals and ambulances, and what that implies, is altogether missed. (Similarly in Beowulf, Unferth, the primary antagonist of the tale, is also the only one who wears an extremely large cross around his neck). Whenever these marauders want to engage in some nefarious scheme against the Muslims – who are always portrayed as noble and fair-dealing – they cynically holler, “God wills it!”

Additionally, there’s King Arthur, released in 2004. Again, Arthur, who according to all records (legendary or otherwise) was Christian, now, just as with Kingdom of Heaven’s Balian, is portrayed as being ambivalent towards, and cautious of, Christianity. Conversely, the blue-painted pagan Picts are shown as a free-loving people who simply want to live and let live, while the Church in Rome is a hypocritical and oppressive force, constantly out to exploit.

So, according to these films and their subliminal messages, we are to understand that all pre-modern Christians who were zealous over their faith were (and thus still are) all hypocrites – or worse – while all truly good “Christians” were (and still are) discreet, indifferent, skeptical, and cautious of Christianity, such as Balian and Arthur…

At any rate, while Hollywood can appear to be on a crusade to defame Christianity, it would do well to remember that it is because of Christian civilization that they are even able to make movies in the first place. Not only is Christianity fundamentally responsible for what many a Western liberal takes for granted – that is, the freedom and advancements of Western civilization – but also for much of the historical record from which movie-makers are able to exploit, warp, and subsequently rake in millions, was compiled by Christians. It is no small irony that the one single solitary manuscript that contains the text of Beowulf was written by a monk, and preserved in a monastery for centuries. –excerpted from an article by Raymond Ibrahim at National Review Online 11.30.07