drunk_woman

California has passed a new law meant to stem the rise in sexual assault on college campuses. I wrote about how I believe this rise is because of a hook up culture  that permeates college campuses in a sexual revolution gone awry.

As researched in my article, the behavior blurring the line of consent, is the fact that inebriation seems to be a requirement for the hook up sex. To counter this culture the California law specifies the prohibition of sex when “The complainant was incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol, or medication, so that the complainant could not understand the fact, nature, or extent of the sexual activity.”

And yet this definition of sexual assault is already in the California Penal Code which actually goes into more detail than this new law and actually explains quite succinctly what consent is.

Another aspect of the so called “Yes means Yes” law that is confusing is the reality that “hook up” sex is by definition void of real verbal communication. The adults engaged in it do not really have the trust and commitment required for said communication. Due to the awkwardness of sex outside of a committed relationship there is usually little to no verbal cues but a sort of hit and miss experimentation of sexual behavior.

It is, for the most part, only in the comfort of a committed relationship that there is real verbal communication during sex. Do this- don’t do that- can I do this? etc. There is this unwritten law about correcting a stranger and potentially ruining the spontaneity of the moment and possibly deflating your partner’s passion.

Does a law really have the power to change how humans communicate during sex? Will this be the new normal in sexuality?

To facilitate this new law and similar regulations being enacted around the country www.bluerepublican.org offers a consent form and there is also a new phone app.

Ohio State University   is implementing new policies that take “Yes” even further.  Not only must “Yes mean Yes” but the “why” of the interaction must be verbalized as well.

Even more bizarre are new definitions of Assault as described in regulations at the University of Michigan which include:

“ discounting the partner’s feelings regarding sex; criticizing the partner sexually; touching the partner sexually in inappropriate and uncomfortable ways; withholding sex and affection; always demanding sex; forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children), to witness sexual acts, to participate in uncomfortable sex or sex after an episode of violence, to have sex with other people; and using objects and/or weapons to hurt during sex or threats to back up demands for sex.  “

With these broadened interpretations of assault and narrower definitions of consent, it would seem that no sexual encounter is void of some type of prosecution. It is apparent that the real purpose of these policies and laws is meant to shield the Universities from litigation, rather than to protect victims.

One possible good outcome of this may be that young adults will pause before engaging in risky sexual behavior. Perhaps, not only will the incidence of sexual assault reduce but the growing rate of  sexually transmitted diseases and the nearly 50% rate of unintended pregnancies in the US , in both of which California leads among all the other states.

Prohibition has never been an effective means of changing human behavior, so there is little hope that the complications imposed on sexual encounters on campus will make much of an impact. Ron Paul, a conservative Christian, has always stated that imposing laws is not an effective way to change morality.

Being alerted to the crisis, is probably the best we can hope for in this new law. Maybe being alerted will lead to some education and perhaps a change in the culture.

the-giver-community-and-elders-BW

The Giver is a tale of a dystopian future disguised as utopia. It is a world without the pain of evil but it is also a world free of the joy of love and ecstasy. It answers the question of evil in the world.  In The Giver all forms of conflict are eliminated through medication to manage emotions, and a socialist society that dictates every aspect of life to eliminate competition and free thinking.  Procreation is by artificial insemination and families are created by assignment not love.

The movie was filmed in black and white to emphasize the blandness of this society. As the Receiver is given memories of the world before the society of “Sameness” was created he begins to see color. He stops taking his medication in order to experience more “color” and emotions. He begins to feel love and love moves him to risk his life in order to change the society and free the people he loves.

“Sameness” eliminated conflict but there is a greater evil in the dehumanizing that is necessary for the peace. “Sameness” also requires the defective babies and those that are too old to be of use to be euthanized.

How does this answer the question of evil? Why would a good God allow for evil? In order to eliminate evil we would have to eliminate free will which is how evil was eliminated in The Giver. God would have to create us as robots like the people of “Sameness”.  Without free will there is no love.  Without the opportunity to disobey, there is no obedience.  Without the freedom to choose evil there is no good.

According to the Bible, evil began with the disobedience of Satan who was an angel that wanted to be greater than God and in his disobedience fell from heaven and brought a third of the angels with him. God gave free will even to the creatures that He created to serve Him. Mankind chose evil in the Garden of Evil when Adam and Eve chose to disobey God after being tempted (I Timothy 2:14) by Satan.  That disobedience was carried from generation to generation throughout history.

Evil is evident in the world today. One might say that it is running rampant. Graft, corruption, thievery and murder are everywhere.  The horror of what is being reported by the group ISIS is being met with the horror of the warring countries set to destroy them.  The countries of the US, Great Britain, France, Turkey, Syria, Denmark, Belgium, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates are aligning to do battle in what is reminiscent of the coalition of countries brought together against the evil of the Nazi regime in World War II.  It would appear that the evil of ISIS is begetting the evil of a third World War.

God may have allowed for evil but He has also allowed for its destruction at the end of the Age.

Revelation 20:7-10

7 When the thousand years come to an end, Satan will be let out of his prison. 8 He will go out to deceive the nations—called Gog and Magog—in every corner of the earth. He will gather them together for battle—a mighty army, as numberless as sand along the seashore. 9 And I saw them as they went up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded God’s people and the beloved city. But fire from heaven came down on the attacking armies and consumed them.

10 Then the devil, who had deceived them, was thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur, joining the beast and the false prophet. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever….14 Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire.

Lord help us as we get closer to the End. Deliver us from evil.

Seek Him while He may be found.

media confusion

It is not often that I defend the actions of the current administration. There is much talk about King Obama and how he is usurping his power and violating the Constitution with the Acts of War that have been instituted without Congressional approval in the Mid East.

But today as I read another article blasting these actions, I remembered an odd movie that recorded some of the beginnings of American dealings with terrorists in the same region. The movie was called Charlie Wilson’s War. Charlie Wilson was a U.S. congressman from Texas who had a conservative Christian friend who was a rich socialite.  She was concerned about the Soviet expansion into Afghanistan and convinced Charlie to use his position to intervene when the U.S. was hesitating to get involved.  Through appropriations by Congressional Committees, he was able to fund the local insurgents in their fight to oust the Soviets.  He also gained the support of Pakistan, Israel, and Saudi Arabia. Most of the aid went to Gulbuddin Hekmatyar , a senior Taliban leader and backer of Al-Qaeda.

From President Carter to Obama and every president in between there have been covert funding of these insurgent groups with ties to Islamist extremist terrorist groups. Even President Reagan who is held in such high esteem by conservative Americans had a role through his Reagan Doctrine  . With the help of American dollars and military equipment, we have empowered these groups and created the danger that they have been and continue to be in the world.

Although the pattern of this U.S. foreign policy goes back for almost four decades, and President Obama continues this involvement of funding covert wars without congressional approval, he is maligned as though it is some new, strange phenomenon. I am not saying that he is right but I am saying he is not more at fault than any of his predecessors since 1978.

I have heard President Obama say that his is the most transparent administration that there has ever been.  This may be true, but not because of anything the administration has done on its part.  What is different in this administration is the proliferation of alternative media sources throughout the world and the power and speed of communication via the internet that have made the doings of the U.S. government throughout the world more visible than ever before.

It is the almost instantaneous reporting of world events that make it impossible to keep under wraps what previous administrations were able to keep from the American public. This awareness sheds light on these events and call into question practices that have become commonplace over the years but are nonetheless unconstitutional.

We are long overdue for a scrutiny of the American military action throughout the world and the havoc it has and continues to create without the due process that is mandated by the Constitution. It is time to say “no more”.

Water William Land Park

Three new Bills were signed today by Governor Brown that put California in line with the rest of the states in the West to confiscate water rights from property owners and give them to the State Resources Water Board.

Property rights are a relatively new phenomenon in the scope of human history having come to play during the Renaissance in the 16th Century as Medieval Feudal Systems were replaced by emerging capitalist economies.

Article 17 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) enshrines the right to property as follows:

“ “(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property”[5](Wikipedia)

But what does a property owner really own when government has the right to levy the property with taxes, in some states own mineral rights and now in all states in the West own the right to control the distribution of the ground water on that property? Oh and did I mention a little thing called Eminent Domain?

The loss of water rights will hit the Central Valley Farmers the most, who have depended on the California aquifers to keep them in business. They have already suffered the loss of ground water being diverted passed them to southern California via the California Aqueduct  and environmentalists protecting fish over farms by sending water out to sea.

Those same environmentalists see this legislation as a much needed salvation to the future of California’s aquifers. But even they agree that these benefits will not be seen for many years to come.

Authorities in the most over-pumped basins would have to submit sustainability plans to the state by January 2020. Other basins ranked as a priority would have another two years to adopt a plan. The agencies would then have an additional 20 years to stop serious overdraft, which means the full force of the measures wouldn’t be felt until at least 2040. http://www.latimes.com/science/la-me-groundwater-20140908-story.html

What is evident is the fact that the right of property ownership has been redefined once more by an overly intrusive government. The question becomes is the government turning back the clock and returning us to a Feudal System whereby our labors are no longer rewarded by true property ownership but property that is ours in name only while the true owner we labor for is the government?

John Locke argued that the safeguarding of natural rights, such as the right to property, along with the separation of powers and other check and balances, would help to curtail political abuses by the state.[20][26]Wikipedia

But government has once again positioned itself to usurp those rights.

http://www.bluerepublican.org/2014/09/03/why-one-christian-left-the-gop/

ray riceThe  Ray Rice   incident is shedding light on one of America’s dirty little secrets.

Nearly 3 in 10 women (29%) and 1 in 10 men (10%) in the US have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a partner and report a related impact on their functioning.[ii]

Nearly, 15% of women (14.8%) and 4% of men have been injured as a result of IPV that included rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.[iii]

1 in 4 women (24.3%) and 1 in 7 men (13.8%) aged 18 and older in the United States have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.[iv]

IPV alone affects more than 12 million people each year.[v]

More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and more than 1 in 4 men (28.5%) in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.[vi]

Nearly half of all women and men in the United States have experienced psychological aggression by an intimate partner in their lifetime (48.4% and 48.8%, respectively).[vii]

Females ages 18 to 24 and 25 to 34 generally experienced the highest rates of intimate partner violence.[viii]

From 1994 to 2010, about 4 in 5 victims of intimate partner violence were female.[ix]

Most female victims of intimate partner violence were previously victimized by the same offender, including 77% of females ages 18 to 24, 76% of females ages 25 to 34, and 81% of females ages 35 to 49.[x]

The National Domestic Violence Hotline

Domestic violence is rampant in our country, but until it affects one of our sports or music heroes (rihanna ) it is not talked about. 

This is a very real battle every day for a lot of regular people all over the country.  Last year I volunteered at a women’s shelter.  My Bible study group hosted a birthday party for the children and their mothers.  It was heart breaking to see these little families who must be holed up like prisoners to be kept safe from a menace to whom they are related by love and/ or blood.

It reminds me of the verse in the Bible where Jesus said,

 Matthew 10:34-36New Living Translation (NLT)

34 “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.

35 ‘I have come to set a man against his father,

    a daughter against her mother,

and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.

36

    Your enemies will be right in your own household!’

It is not God’s desire that there be division in families, but He knew that it is the nature of mankind.  He also knew that He would be a cause for division.

The source of the division is sin.

No one is truly wise;

    no one is seeking God.

 

12

All have turned away;

    all have become useless.

No one does good,

    not a single one.”

 

13

“Their talk is foul, like the stench from an open grave.

    Their tongues are filled with lies.”

“Snake venom drips from their lips.” Romans 3:11-13

Though Jesus may cause division- he is also the only antidote to sin. Sin divides us from God and divides us from each other.

Romans 5:8 [Full Chapter]

 

But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.

Through faith in Christ we are reconciled to God.

Ephesians 2:13

 

But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

This reconciliation with God will not perfect us in this life but by the power of the Holy Spirit we can have victory over sin and have reconciliation with each other.

Colossians 3

7 You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world. 8 But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behavior, slander, and dirty language. 9 Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. 10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.

12 Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14 Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace.

I am sorry for Mr. and Mrs. Rice that their relationship has been displayed for all the world to see.  I pray that Mr. Rice gets the help he needs.  There is a saying that “Hurt people, hurt people.” His pain must be great.

We are promised that through Christ:

Isaiah 53:5

But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.

May they find the healing that leads to peace.  May this incident lead to revealing this dark secret and bringing it to the Light that many more families may get the help and healing that they need.

God help America.

For more information on how your can help here is an organization with zero tolerance for domestic abuse that brings healing to families http://www.marykayfoundation.org

                                    ocean-plastic

California is soon to be the first state to outlaw plastic bags from grocery stores.  Never mind that the production of paper bags is more detrimental to the environment.  Does anyone remember “Use a plastic bag save an owl”?  That is the irony of this issue.  Plastic bags were initially pushed to consumers for environmental reasons and now we have been mandated to use paper bags instead for the same reasons.

There are Ten myths about plastic bags and the environment at least.  The bottom line is- this law is not going to do much to impact our environment and it is another case of government invasion on our private lives and hindering free market competition.

From News 10:

“The bill would prohibit single-use plastic bags at grocery stores and large pharmacies in 2015 and at convenience stores in 2016.

It includes $2 million in loans to help manufacturers shift to producing reusable bags and lets grocers charge 10 cents each for paper and reusable bags.

A statewide ban had been a goal for lawmakers trying to reduce the buildup of plastic waste. About 100 local jurisdictions in California already have adopted similar bans.”

The law amounts to a tax because those consumers that don’t bring their own grocery bags to shop will be charged a minimum 10 cents per bag.  This could be as much as a 1% tax on a consumer’s shopping bill.

It’s a bit of the reverse on the old Robinhood adage-robbing the poor to pay the rich grocers and unions.

From U-T San Diego :

“San Diego Bishop George McKinney, of St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church Of God In Christ, called the ten cent fee a “massive redistribution of wealth” and a “heavenly deal for the big grocery chains,” arguing that it would generate hundreds of millions in profit at the expense of poor and working families.

To address that, the bills authors added a provision requiring that funds from paper bag sales be used only to buy the alterative bags, or to educate customers about the program.

Truitt, of Major Market, said that the elimination of plastic bags could generate savings for both grocers and shoppers.

Reusable mesh bags are available for purchase at Major Market in Escondido. A statewide ban will eliminate disposable plastic grocery bags next year.— Eduardo Contreras

“Bags cost us money,” he said. “They are an expense. If we don’t have to pay for bags, we will save money, and can hopefully pass that along to customers.”

The reality is that plastic bag use has been reduced by more than half in the state since 2006- voluntarily and without state coercion. Californians and local jurisdictions are choosing to be environmentally conscious by utilizing multiple use bags.

With a drought killing our farming industry and high taxes driving other industries out of California-plastic bags seem to be the least of our worries and certainly not worth the paper this bill is written on.

                                          westboro Baptist church

The Westboro Baptist Church is in the news again.  This time their hate mongering is actually being used for good.  In their threat to picket the funeral of Robin Williams, they made another comedian really mad. The comedian parlayed his anger into a fundraising effort for St. Judes’s hospital and raised nearly $100,000 for the charity. Initially, he had offered to send the WBC to protest a real threat to Christianity-the group  ISIS .  When the State department discouraged this effort, he decided to host a crowd funding instead for the hospital.

I am amazed that the Westboro Baptist Church gets the funding it does to travel around the U. S. with their message of hate and repentance.  As a Christian, they have always been a source of embarrassment to me.  Embarrassment is too mild a term. They are revolting to me.  I am reluctant to even call them my brothers and sisters in Christ.

Yesterday I read one of the verses that WBC and other churches who preach the gospel of hate use as fuel for their fire.  As I read it, it made me question the salvation of these groups.

Galatians 5:19-21New Living Translation (NLT)

 

19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that about half of the sins listed apply to WBC.

Maybe they don’t know Jesus the way that they say that they do.

Maybe they are some of the false prophets that Jesus warned about.

Matthew 7:15-23New International Version (NIV)

 

True and False Prophets

 

15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

The Apostle Paul goes on to describe the fruits of the Holy Spirit of a true follower of Jesus Christ after delineating the fruits of sin.

Galatians 5:22-26New International Version (NIV)

 

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

The result of living a life void of the fruits of the Spirit is an eternity separated from God.

Matt 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

Maybe WBC will take their own advice and repent and become true followers of the one true God and live a life full of the fruits of the Spirit.  Then, maybe, they will truly be able to lead others to know Him as well.

Flags American Danish copy

I just read a blog entitled What it’s Like To Grow Up In A Country That Doesn’t Hate Sex.

 It is about how families in Denmark are more accepting of teen promiscuity than American families.

The point of the article is that the Danish have a healthier view of sex and therefore lead happier lives because of this.

I would argue that when you really love something you don’t throw it around like a cheap shoe.  When you love something you protect it, guard it, you cherish it, and value it.

The so called “puritanical “values of the majority of Americans consider adolescent sex to be taboo.  Unlike their European counterparts they do not look favorably on their teenage daughter bringing home her boyfriend to spend the night. The blogger of this article sees this as a bad thing.  But is it?

Is there anything hateful about wanting our children to participate in an adult activity when they are an adult and both emotionally and financially capable of bearing the consequences of that behavior.  I am reminded of the parents who tell their children,”If you want to drink or smoke pot I will allow you to in my home.”  Encouraging risky behavior is not good parenting.

I realize that we no longer live in a society where chastity is a highly guarded virtue. Statistically 70 percent of young adults have had sex by age 20.  The U.S. has a higher rate of teen pregnancies but the way teen pregnancies are treated and the way they are recorded in Europe makes that suspect . The same article details how abstinence education helped reduce teen pregnancies in the U. S. The MTV show 16 and Pregnant has also had an impact in the reduction of teen pregnancies.

 Statistically, teens in the U.S. and Europe are equally sexually active. Apparently parental approval is not a determining factor in teen sexual behavior.

The assertion that a country that is more accepting of sexual promiscuity among teens is a happier place to live may not be accurate. From Wikipedia:

SUICIDE RATE:

Denmark is often known as the country with the happiest people, but according to the WHO, both the female and male suicide rates are significantly higher than that of the US. Out of 80 countries polled and investigated in, the female suicide rate for Denmark is 11.3 suicides per 100,000 women (ranked 13th). The male suicide rate is twice as high at 24.1 suicides per 100,000 men (ranked 23rd).

The US, however, are ranked much lower on the list of 80. The female rate of suicide in the US is 4.4 suicides per 100,000 women (ranked 40th). And the male rate of suicide is 19.8 suicides per 100,000 men (ranked 30th).

Maybe hating sex makes for a happier society after all.

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