Sunday, February 26, 2012

Why Islam is Winning

Why Islam is Winning
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 26, 2012

A Koran is burned; Muslims murder American servicemen and Barack Hussein Obama can’t apologize fast enough.

Mohammad is depicted in cartoons; fatwas are placed on the heads of the artists. In fact a fatwa is still on the head of British-Indian author Salman Rushdie for his late 1980s tome The Satanic Verses. There is a fatwa on the life of outspoken Dutch politician Geert Wilders as well as Muslim human rights activist Raheel Raza.

Muslim taxicab drivers at the Minneapolis airport refuse passengers carrying alcohol and/or dogs – aside from minor objections and little said in the lame-stream-media, no problem. Additionally, Muslim demands for footbaths at various public facilities, including airports, are also granted at taxpayer expense.

A Muslim convert to Christianity is sentenced to death in Iran, not just for the conversion but for his becoming a Christian pastor as well. Youcef Nadarkhani faces execution without warning.

A Muslim teacher sues to get leave for her pilgrimage to Mecca. Although the leave is denied on the grounds that her absence would create an undue hardship on her employer, she resigned her position. In fact the lawsuit on behalf of Safoorah Khan, a middle school math teacher in the Chicago suburb of Berkeley, was orchestrated by Obama’s chosen Attorney General Eric Holder.

Demands on behalf of Muslim students attending Catholic University in Washington, DC to have crucifixes removed are made. No student claimed to be a part of this complaint made by John F. Banzhaf, III, a public interest law professor at nearby George Washington University, but the complaint itself is demonstrative of the ongoing path by Muslims to impose their beliefs on the world, often under the threat of death.

More and more outcries coming from liberals and feminists supporting a people who would deny them rights. Women not permitted to vote or drive in Saudi Arabia, single women required to have male chaperones in many Muslim countries, pre-marital sex as grounds for execution as is marital infidelity by women are part of a people that liberals and feminists are supporting. Were Christians or Jews enforcing such restrictions on women, there would be protests in the streets.

The left also complains that it is wrong to profile Muslims as well as calling Islam a religion of peace on par with Christianity and Judaism, when in fact the Koran implicitly calls for the extermination of “infidels,” – non-Muslims. What religion of peace accepts the rape of children and honor killings?

How then is Islam winning?

They remain true to their faith – even the outlandish and outrageous tenets.

Consider the same liberals and leftists and their fervent attack not just on Christianity, but all things religious. There is more secularism in the United States, Canada, Europe and Western Civilization as a whole. Meanwhile, Muslims are infiltrating countries like England, France and Germany rioting and demanding those countries’ centuries old customs be changed to meet Muslim edicts.

Perhaps a case can even be made that Jewish secularism in 1930s Germany contributed to the Holocaust. Consider the Jewish people living in a nation seemingly educated and cultured as Germany. The Jewish people were, certainly in the major cities, integrated and assimilated in many ways and they considered themselves proud German citizens, veterans of the Great War, who had rights and would be protected.

First came the Nuremburg Laws of 1935 then Kristallnacht in 1938. But what was the reaction to the burning of synagogues, Torah scrolls, other religious items, the rounding up of innocent Jews in the streets, the looting of Jewish-owned stores and businesses? German Jews did not riot in the streets or murder random Germans. (Perhaps they should have.) No; they were too civilized and believed in the rule of law – much to their chagrin and ultimate fate. Nothing of the kind has been imposed upon Muslims.

All this about a people persecuted, hunted, rounded up and slaughtered simply for their faith. Muslims are not enduring Nazi-style attacks; instead they are perpetrating such assaults.

Should religious Christians and Jews respond to Muslim insurgencies both physical and cultural in kind? While some would say yes, I say a stepped up vigilance is imperative. Greater security measures, increased profiling and more restrictions of residents of Muslim countries from entering the United States – for any reason is mandatory. How many student visas have been violated by so-called students overstaying, and then disappearing into the wind, only to crop up later in “sleeper cells?”

How many Fort Hoods are necessary before we get the message? Are there fanatics in other religions? Of course there are. But let’s stop carting out Timothy McVeigh as a counter each and every time violence at the hands of Muslims occurs.

Stop listening to the Rosie O’ Donnells of the world who bellow that radical Christianity is worse than radical Islam. The radical Islam practiced in Ahmadinejad’s Iran would have O’ Donnell murdered for being a lesbian. I don’t hear threats on her life from devout Christians or Orthodox Jews. They may not approve of her lifestyle; some may even protest, but there’s no Christian fatwa on O’ Donnell’s head.

A lack of religiosity and faith as well as a tremendous increase in secularism in the United States and Western Civilization as a whole, now make many people uncomfortable in religious environs or with the public profession of one’s faith. People of faith are mocked – look at how the so-called mainstream media treats men like Tim Tebow, quarterback of the Denver Broncos; Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks and presidential candidate Rick Santorum (R-PA). They are often excoriated for the pronouncement of their faith. I would rather surround myself with men like them than people the likes of Casey Anthony, Robert Blake and George Soros.

I have often been told that the only reason Christian conservatives love and support Israel is to convert the Jews. The problem with that notion is that Jewish people of faith and conviction as Jews would never fall prey to such possibilities. For the record, no Christian conservative has ever tried to lure me away from my faith. Quite frankly, religious Jews have more in common with those very Christian conservatives who love and support Israel than with secular Jews.

Secularism and liberalism removed prayer from school, put condoms in schools, and saw an increase in campus violence. Secularists and liberals are demanding the removal of “under G-d” from the Pledge of Allegiance as well as the Ten Commandments from public display.

Secularism, liberalism, and atheism are what are allowing Islam a clear path on which to march forward toward their unholy victory. The time is now to say NO MORE and return to the churches and synagogues and reclaim our peace loving G-d.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Ode on a Grecian Future

Ode on a Grecian Future
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 24, 2012

With apologies to English Romantic poet John Keats (1795-1821) for bastardizing his Grecian Urn title, the United States economy will resemble Greece more and more due to soaring gasoline prices and the arrogance and stubbornness of one Barack Hussein Obama.

For Obama to declare in a speech this week that there is “no silver bullet” answer or cure to what ails this nation on the energy front is myopically disingenuous. Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper called the deal for the XL Keystone pipeline “a no brainer.” Yet, Obama, deeply entrenched in the pockets of the extreme environmentalists, unilaterally rejected the plan that would have brought thousands of shovel ready jobs to the United States, more domestic oil and an opportunity to tell the Saudis no thank you to any more of their oil. And no more bowing to Saudi princes and emirs.

Ultimately, it will be the price of gas that will drive this economy – pun intended.

Not to get mired in the weeds of statistics, but they do tell part of the story. When Obama was inaugurated in 2009, the national average cost for a gallon of gas was $1.83. On February 23, 2012 that average reached $3.61 and a day later it hit $3.65, with no ceiling in sight.

Twenty states are above the national average: Alaska, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia. The average price per gallon in those states is $3.79 with 54 percent of the US population residing there. The five states being hit the hardest are Connecticut at $3.90, New York at $3.91, Alaska at $4.05, California at $4.20 and Hawaii at $4.28.

Since last year each driver has spent $840 more to fill their tanks than the year before. That’s $230 billion in disposable income lost. That’s vacations cancelled, stretching last year’s school wardrobe another year, postponing purchasing that new car or other big ticket items, dining out less frequently, buying fewer gifts at Christmas and Chanukah time and even stretching the supermarket dollars farther.

With the aforementioned purchases moving to the back burner for an undetermined amount of time, consider what millions and millions of Americans making those same decisions will do to the economy out of dire necessity. Production drops, thus raising unemployment in both manufacturing and sales. Increased unemployment puts increased demands on the government coffers for unemployment benefits, thus the need for government to derive other sources of revenue. Government revenue comes from the taxes paid by the workers of America. With less revenue entering the government coffers and more needing to be paid out, as well as covering the already committed for expenditures, the debt rises higher and higher.

The current debt in the United States is above $15 trillion and is projected to reach $16.4 trillion by Election Day. The per capita debt for every man, woman and child in the United States is currently $44,215 and will reach $75,000 by 2020, should Obama’s budget become law, according to Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and supported by Matt McCall, president of the Penn Financial Group, LLC. Sessions also attributes his numbers to the IMF.

Consider the riots in Greece and the civil unrest in many other European countries tethered to the EU and the stumbling Euro, which never should have been implemented in the first place. Per capita debt in Spain is $18,395; in Portugal it is $19,989; in France it is $33,491; in Greece it is $38,937; in Italy it is $40,475 and in Ireland it is $43,887 – all lower than the US figure.

With $4 a gallon of gas inevitable and $5 a distinct possibility by mid-summer, think about what you won’t be able to do with the additional money going into your tanks and not into the aforementioned purchases. Daydream about the rounds of golf you won’t play or the swim club your family won’t join, or the summer camps your children won’t go to or the baseball games you won’t attend. Think about the sweaty house you will endure because the cost of energy to air condition your home will also skyrocket.

While doing those things and sweating through the stifling heat this summer, remember as you watch the Democrat and Republican conventions who to thank – the party rejecting XL Keystone or the party clamoring for domestic drilling to end our reliance upon unfriendly nations for their oil. End our reliance upon those nations and cripple their economies at the same time.

There is enough oil domestically via the XL Keystone pipeline, ANWR, the Gulf of Mexico and the shale in the Rockies and Pennsylvania to sustain the United States for what experts say should be centuries. While drilling at home, continued research and development should be conducted to provide wind, solar and bio-fuel energy at competitive prices, without government investment and side by side with gas and oil.
Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Food, Glorious Slop

“FOOD FIGHT!” – John “Bluto” Blutarsky

Food, Glorious Slop
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 16, 2012

The hypocrisy of the Obama administration continues to march on like the Nazis in 1939 Poland. This time they have invaded the lunch boxes of school children.

Thanks to government edicts from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the food police are inspecting the lunch boxes and brown bags to see if mom or dad has packed what government deems an appropriate midday repast.

Since when is a turkey and cheese sandwich, a banana, potato chips and apple juice an unacceptable lunch? Sounds like a good lunch to me – except for the turkey and cheese combo – but then I keep kosher, so either the turkey or the cheese would work independently.

Apparently in Hoke County, NC, such a lunch did not pass muster, as a four-year-old preschooler attending West Hoke Elementary School was terrorized by the food police being told her lunch was substandard while having a government-authorized school lunch thrust upon her. Terrorized, because a four-year-old is being told the lunch packed by mom is wrong.

Just what did the government determine was a better alternative for this four-year-old? Chicken nuggets – processed, battered, fried pieces of unidentifiable chicken parts. And adding insult to injury, the school sent the girl home with her original lunch in tact with a note telling mom she would also be charged $1.25 for the food forced upon her daughter. Apparently the mom-made lunch lacked vegetables, which was given to her daughter, was in turn were rejected.

The mother emphasized her daughter does not like vegetables, but under her supervision she can get the child to eat some. Yet, the lunch had fruit – a banana, which even my niece, when she was three-years-old, knew is high in potassium. And sliced turkey and cheese versus processed and fried chicken nuggets is a no-brainer as well.

Did the food police ever stop to contemplate potential allergies this four-year-old girl might have? Is a four-year-old equipped to tell the food police what she can’t eat or drink? Perhaps she was on a gluten-free diet – the sandwich eliminates that notion. Perhaps she was lactose intolerant – the food police gave her milk. Perhaps she observed kashrut – the turkey and cheese excludes that idea. Perhaps she has a nut allergy. What kind of oil were the chicken nuggets fried in – peanut, canola, vegetable?

Full disclosure, I was a foodie before the word existed. In fact, I was almost thrown out of junior high school as a seventh grader for authoring a petition against the school cafeteria food, calling it “slop.” My parents, both of Blessed memory, were called into school to meet with the principal due to my disruptive and scurrilous activities – I dared question authority.

My father wasn’t sure which tact to take – either kick my ass for having my parents summonsed to the principal’s office or congratulate me for using my First Amendment rights of speech and petition as taught to me at that very school.

It’s no wonder the following year in our eighth grade musical I was given “Food, Glorious Food,” from Oliver to sing throughout our three day run.

Having taught in urban public and charter schools, I can attest first hand to what is passing as school lunches. Fried, oil-laden, carb-rich offerings riddled with salt and sugary desserts. Sure there is some fruit – canned or fresh, but rarely consumed. One school at which I taught had a salad bar – but, alas, for teachers and staff only.

The invasion by the food police is just another sterling example of government overreaching into places it does not belong. Our freedoms are being eroded one by one and far too many Americans are standing idly by allowing their freedoms to be stripped away. This administration continues to count on ignorance and apathy in order to ensure full governmental control of our lives, from the bedroom to the board room and from the school house to G-d’s house.

We the people are ignorant because we do not know the law and the Constitution. We the people are apathetic because outside of our little corner of the world we realize how little control we have, and therefore we do not speak up.

Well, it’s high time we raise our voices in unison and tell the government to STOP. The Obama administration, nor any other administration, cannot spend our money better than we can. Nor can they make better food choices than we can. Nor can they tell us how to pray. And they certainly can’t raise our children better than we can.

This is an administration run by ultra-liberals who don’t want anyone peering into their bedrooms, or being asked for photo identification when voting, but they’re real quick to inspect children’s lunch boxes, tell us what light bulbs to use and what kind of cars to drive. Yet, this is the same Obama administration smashing the Constitution to smithereens by forcing religion-run institutions to violate their principles, and demanding under financial penalty that we the people must buy a product we may not want.

When will it end? If it does not end on November 6 this year, it may never end. If this regime is not turned out of office this year, we may not recognize this country in another four years. Certainly the Founding Fathers won’t; and that’s not hyperbole.

Now, before I enjoy my lunch of a turkey sandwich on a bagel, a banana, some b-b-q potato chips and a cup of green tea – don’t report me to the food police – I offer this quote from one of our great Founding Fathers, Patrick Henry:

“The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people; it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government.”

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Detention for Five, Alex

Detention for Five, Alex
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 14, 2012

Here’s a hell of an irony: Parents United for Responsible Education (PURE) are attempting to prevent responsible behavior from occurring in the Noble Street Charter Network of schools of Chicago.

Since the 2008-09 school year the Noble Charter schools, of which there are 19, students have incurred fines for their misdeeds and miscreant behavior. Should a student earn four demerits for infractions such as, but not limited to, untied shoes, untucked shirts, chewing gum, sleeping in class and bringing inappropriate food to school, he or she is subject to detention.

But unlike other schools and school systems, this detention will cost the attendees $5 to cover the cost of the extra time required for staffing the three-hour after school punishment session. During the detention, students may be assigned silent study, behavior improvement lessons, or cleaning and maintenance. Should students rack up a dozen detentions, having already cost them $60, they are then mandated to attend a discipline education program which will set them back an additional $140. Beyond that, students are subject to suspension.

“If you have rules, you have to enforce them,” said Michael Milkie, Noble Network CEO in defense of the measures. Milkie said that sweating the small details prevents bigger problems, noting that Noble’s rules have all but put the kibosh on more severe problems such as violence. There has been an average of one fight a year per campus, said Milkie of the success of his program.

Noble’s policies are reminiscent of those enforced during the administration of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. He believed in a “fix the broken window” philosophy of crime fighting whereby replacing and repairing broken windows around the city then moving on to the next bigger problem eventually sends a message that the authorities are paying attention and will crack down to make the city a better place in which to work, play, and live. Conversely, ignoring the “small stuff,” only encourages greater destruction, crime and mayhem proving to be deleterious to the city as a whole for residents and visitors alike.

And yet, here comes PURE with its impure notion of slamming the lid on Noble and its successes. PURE is seeking legal action to squelch the policies that not only are succeeding at Noble but other charter schools are considering emulating. It’s ironic because this is a working system that teaches young people responsibility, yet a group with responsible in its name wants to extinguish this bright light.

So bright a light, Noble claims that 90 percent of its graduates attend college and it boasts an overall graduation rate of 86 percent, as compared to a paltry 54 percent graduation rate for the Chicago public school system.

In spite of the Noble success, PURE objects that low income students and families are unable to afford the cost of detention and potential discipline education program. This is where personal responsibility makes an entrance. The onus is on the parents to teach their children proper behavior before they reach the front door of the school building. The onus is also upon the students themselves to actually behave in school and follow the rules. Nobody is forcing these children to misbehave and act out at school. Additionally, poverty is no excuse for poor behavior.

One mother complained her son should not have been penalized for not shaking the hand of a visitor to the school. “I don’t see how it has anything to do with discipline,” said Joan Blackwell, parent of the aforementioned student. Clearly Ms. Blackwell does not see the bigger picture. Greeting a visitor to the school with a handshake (and looking him or her directly in the eyes) is a character developing exercise useful for life.

Having taught in both urban public and charter schools, I applaud the Noble approach. Discipline is severely lacking in the classroom and the amount of time expended dealing with unruliness is time away from academics. Calculate that throughout a 12 year career and the amount of actual learning is greatly diminished in troubled schools versus those with fewer behavioral problems.

No student is perfect, and perfection is hardly expected. Even Noble allows for four demerits prior to detention. PURE should rescind thoughts of legal action and leave be a good system. Schools should be able to make their own rules – local authority at the grass roots level typically works best.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

It's Only the Constitution, Mr. Obama

It’s Only the Constitution, Mr. Obama
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 12, 2012

Barack Obama STILL doesn’t get it. Please send a copy of the United States Constitution to the White House because it is obvious he hasn’t read it recently, if at all. How on earth did Obama get through Harvard Law School?

Obama was flagrantly wrong when attempting to force Catholic institutions such as schools, hospitals and charities to provide contraception as part of the mandated Obamacare. Obama lost track of something called the First Amendment, wherein it says “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

Obama demanded that the aforementioned Catholic institutions abandon Church doctrine and principles or face financial penalties for not caving to government interference with how a religion operates in these United States.

Having faced the justified ire of thousands of Catholics, pro-life adherents and many more from other faiths who support religious liberty, Obama changed course. But in doing so, he still has yet to learn his constitutional lessons.

Obama announced that instead of mandating Catholic institutions provide contraception, he would force insurance companies to provide contraceptives directly to the employees of those organizations for free.

Is the federal government now mandating an entire industry that it must give away a product? And, does anyone actually believe the insurance companies are just going to bow to Obama’s demands out of pure altruism? Don’t count on it. Instead, count on the insurance companies passing along the cost of the contraceptives they “give” away to us, the taxpayers.

Obama still just doesn’t get it. The federal government does not have the authority to force an industry to simply give away to some, for what others must pay. The Constitution does not give the Executive Branch such authority. The insurance industry, for all its pitfalls and foibles, still has the right to makes its own decisions and turn a profit. It’s part of the system of capitalism by which the economic principles of the United States are based.

Couple the contraception controversy with the overall constitutionally questionable Obamacare as a whole and we have a president who really must have been absent the semester the Constitution was taught. Here Obama is commanding the American people to purchase a product it may or may not want – medical insurance.

Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the United States Constitution, commonly known as the commerce clause, gives Congress the power “to regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with Indian Tribes.” Nowhere does the commerce clause grant the Executive Branch ANY power, instead giving it to the Legislative Branch. And nowhere does the commerce clause give the Legislative Branch the authority to mandate how individual citizens spend their money or force them to purchase a specific product – in this case, medical insurance.

Should a person not wish to make such a purchase, he or she should have the freedom to not make that purchase knowing that the onus of responsibility for medical expenses falls exclusively on these people who have chosen to remain uninsured.

And make no mistake; this issue is also not about restricting the rights of women to procure contraceptives either. That is merely a canard by the left to scare people into supporting unconstitutional edicts by an administration seeking to control individuals’ rights regarding medical care. Women are perfectly able to purchase contraceptives on their own and we the people should not be paying for them with our tax dollars.

This issue is as much about contraception as Roe v. Wade (1973) is about abortion. Both are unconstitutional and both trample on freedoms. Obamacare tramples on the freedom of religion and violates the commerce clause. Roe v. Wade violates the 10th Amendment of the Federal Constitution when the rights within that decision should have remained with the several states.

To Obama, I say get ye to a copy of the Constitution of the United States.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Dismiss Defense Dunce Panetta

Dismiss Defense Dunce Panetta
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 3, 2012

United States Defense Secretary Leon Panetta must be fired sooner rather than later. Immediately would be best because he has no sense of history, forgetting the World War II adage “Loose lips sink ships.”

Panetta’s loose lips regarding Israel’s potential military strategy begs the question, with friends like him, who needs enemies? Who the hell does he think he is divulging Israel’s or any other country’s plans?

Panetta’s gaping hole between his lips should sink his own ship. Keep in mind, however, that Panetta is merely a symptom of a wider pandemic of disrespect and a lack of support by this administration toward its only reliable Middle East ally.

Clearly Obama and his cohorts are attempting to sabotage Israel’s safety and security. But this should not come as a surprise since not only has Obama not visited Israel during his term in office, but during the 2008 campaign, in a debate with now Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Obama said he would sit down with Iran’s despotic dictator Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

The issue at hand here is Panetta telling the world that Israel may launch military operations against the Islamic Republic of Iran within the next two to three months for the purposes of destroying any possibility of the belligerent nation acquiring nuclear weapons. Discussing any country’s military plans is counterproductive and potentially deleterious to the success of such a mission.

Potential Israeli operations are not without solid reasoning. Aside from the oft-repeated desires of Iran’s Ahmadinejad that Israel should be wiped off the map, the Islamic country’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said “Israel is a cancerous tumor that should be cut and will be cut.”

Obama and Panetta have “cautioned the Israelis that the US opposes an attack, believing that it would derail an increasingly successful economic sanctions program,” said Panetta.

Success? Panetta and Obama must be using a newfangled dictionary. “Sanctions will not have any impact on our determination to continue our nuclear course,” said Khamenei.

And beware of China, who has long opposed sanctions against Iran. German Chancellor Angela Merkel who has strongly attempted to impress upon China the need to have them persuade Iran to abandon its nuclear program.

Who are Obama and Panetta to tell Israel how to or even if it should defend herself? Do they want Israel to be a sitting duck waiting for Iran to produce the enriched uranium needed for a nuclear weapon? By continuing to enrich its already stockpiled uranium, Iran could produce four atomic bombs, the first inside of a year, according to Major General Aviv Koch Avi, Israel’s Military Intelligence chief.

Just how obtuse is the Obama administration? Iran has been transparent in its thoughts and plans. Israel must be wiped off the map. Israel is a cancer. Do these notions sound remotely complimentary or desirous of a nation seeking the road toward peace and coexistence? Of course not! Yet Obama and Panetta would have Israel turn the other cheek and await a disastrous fate at the hand of part of the Axis of Evil.

And at what cost?

After attacking and potentially destroying Israel, Iran has set its sights on the United States and Western Civilization as a whole in its attempt to establish a global caliphate.

Iran again threatens to block shipping from the Strait of Hormuz. The United States must not blink first. A Hormuz blockade will hurt Iran before it hurts the United States if the US has the smarts to rethink the XL Keystone pipeline deal with Canada and drill domestically for oil as well as fraking for shale.

Israel should do to Iran what she did to Iraq in 1981. It would be a gift to humanity for which she will never be thanked. So in advance, toda raba, Israel.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Obama Crosses Line on Church-State

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” US Constitution, Amendment I

Obama Crosses Line on Church-State
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
February 2, 2012

To paraphrase Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today we are all Catholics.

Following the tragic events of September 11, 2001, that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 men, women and children due to the airplane attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Shanksville, PA, by radical Muslim terrorists, Netanyahu said “we are all Americans.” He said this to demonstrate the mutual support and grieving by decent people the world over.

Today we are all Catholics – at least those of us who are vehemently opposed to the complete overreach of government by Barack Obama and his unconstitutional mandate of state sponsored health care. Now more than ever it is vital that we the people stand united in opposing this heinous demand by an administration so hell-bent on pole vaulting over the fine line of church-state relations.

In yet another step toward total domination of government over the lives of a so-called free people with a constitution compete with a bill of rights, the Obama administration is attempting to destroy the formerly protected conscience clause by demanding that all health care plans include coverage for sterilization and contraception – including those that induce abortions.

This edict will force Catholic institutions such as schools, charities and hospitals to act contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church. This odious law is tantamount to government interference with church business.

So why am I, a non-Catholic, so apoplectic about this? First, this is a monstrous blow against religious liberty potentially affecting other religions. The slippery slope will lead us all into the depths of hell in a nation under siege by its government. This isn’t Communist Russia after all.

Second, it begs the question what religion will come under fire next? Will the insidious Obama-care outlaw circumcisions as unnecessary and elective in nature? And the Catholics don’t have a monopoly on being pro-life either. Clearly, this is an excessive entanglement impeding the free exercise of faith.

“This is not how our country was founded,” said Rabbi Aryeh Spero, in an interview in the Fox News Channel regarding his staunch opposition to Obama-care in general and the intrusion into the business of religious institutions. Spero is president of the Caucus for America, a conservative organization “dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the historic American civilization,” and “battling for the soul of America,” he explained.

This is an ongoing battle over the morality and culture of the United States – a war on religious liberties.

If the NCAA can jigger its March Madness schedule to prevent BYU from being forced to play Sunday games, surely the federal government can keep from violating the First Amendment to the Constitution by forcing Catholic organizations to act counter its teachings.

Does the federal government have the right to force its citizenry to purchase a product it deems necessary – in this case health insurance? Does not this violate the commerce clause in the Constitution? The Supreme Court will have to right the wrongs of the Obama administration, and sooner rather than later. The Obama administration cannot be allowed to trample over the Bill of Rights in an effort to forever amend the nature of the free society we call the United States of America.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.