1) Governor Mitt Romney of Massachusetts Promotes Abstinence Based Sex-Ed Curriculum 2) Christian Persecution in China 3) Activists in American Library Association Attack Boy Scouts Again 4) Symposium Makes for Strange Bedfellows
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GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY OF MASSACHUSETTS PROMOTES ABSTINENCE BASED SEX-ED CURRICULUM
On April 20, 2006 Governor Mitt Romney of Massachusetts awarded an $800,000 15-month contract to Healthy Futures to manage the state’s abstinence education program for middle school students.
“Abstinence education gives young people the support they need in making the decision to postpone sexual activity,” Governor Romney stated in a press release. “In my service as Governor, I’ve never had anyone complain to me that their kids are not learning enough about sex in school. However, a number of people have asked me why it is that we do not speak more about abstinence as a safe and preventive health practice,” said Romney.
“Abstinence education gives young people the support they need in making the decision to postpone sexual activity until they are mature enough to handle the emotional, moral and financial responsibilities of parenthood,” he said. “This is more than teaching kids to say no it will help them preserve self-esteem and build character.
Please join me in congratulating the Massachusetts faith based groups for their work on this program and in thanking the Governor for his support. Now let’s see if the ACLU files a lawsuit before the program has a chance to produce the positive results that many believe will follow.
CHRISTIAN PERSECUTION IN CHINA
When President Bush and Chinese leader Hu Jintao held a joint press conference after their meeting last week, a demonstrator shouting about repression of the Falun Gong meditation cult interrupted the occasion.
But the most severe repression in the People’s Republic is reserved for the nation’s Christians. The group, Voice of the Martyrs, reports that prior to the Bush-Hu summit, Chinese police conducted a series of raids, arresting more than 160 church leaders.
The organization further notes that between February and December, 2005, Chinese authorities arrested over 1,300 Christians, including 11 missionaries from the U.S. and other nations.
Frequently, ministers and other church leaders are tortured and beaten with electric shock batons while in custody. In one case, a 51-year-old disabled pastor was beaten so severely that he suffered a broken rib. Women are often forced to undress in front of male officers.
Reportedly, the president spoke to Hu about Chinese human rights violations in only the most general terms. There was no mention of specific cases or of the savage persecution of Chinese Christians, who the communists view as a direct challenge to the state.
We must speak out against this horror. One of the worst decisions during the Clinton years was to stop linking U.S. trade policy to nations’ human-rights records. It’s time for Congress to re-think that policy.
ACTIVISTS IN AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION ATTACK BOY SCOUTS AGAIN
In keeping with homosexual militants’ ongoing campaign against the Boy Scouts of America, activists in the American Library Association have launched a new drive to stigmatize the Scouts.
In 1999, the ALA governing body passed a resolution demanding that the Scouts “reconsider their policy of discrimination in the areas of sexual orientation and religious belief and demonstrate a commitment to human rights, inclusiveness and mutual respect.”
How about the ALA respecting the Scouts’ right to freedom of association? The Boy Scouts of America was founded on Judeo-Christian principles. Its oath acknowledges God, honor and duty. As a private organization, the BSA has decided that it can not accept members who reject its code specifically atheists and homosexuals.
Now the Library Association is considering another resolution condemning the Scouts. Says BSA spokesman Bob Bork: “It is scary that an organization which purports to believe in free speech and intellectual freedom would take this kind of action.”
But it’s also typical of the way the left operates free speech only to express ideas of which it approves. Every time the left attacks the Boy Scouts of America who have suffered so much for standing on principle -- Christians should rally to their defense.
SYMPOSIUM MAKES FOR STRANGE BEDFELLOWS
Last weekend twenty scholars and political activists from both sides of the political spectrum gathered as the guests of Vital Visions Ministry at the Gaylord Opry Hotel and Conference Center in Nashville, Tennessee, a symposium to discuss a new documentary that is being distributed by Vital Visions entitled, “Theologians Under Hitler.”
The two day meeting made for some strange bedfellows, including such notable leaders of the left as Dr. Robert Edgar, the Head of the National Council of Churches and the Rev. Barry Lynn of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, and such notable leaders of the Religious Right as Dr. Richard Land, President of the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission and Dr. Jerry Sutton, Pastor of the Two Rivers Baptist Church in Nashville and a leader in the Southern Baptist Convention.
There were several lively exchanges as we agreed to discuss the hard issues, respectfully, in an effort by both sides to understand how respected and knowledgeable theologians could embrace and promote one of the most vile and evil regimes in world history. I attended the meeting with some reservations about the outcome, but found the two days to be informative and stimulating on a number of levels. I have had heated exchanges in national forums over the past few months with both Edgar and Lynn, and relished the opportunity to see them up close and personal.
I am always interested to know how two human beings can see the same set of problems and come to such opposing solutions. In America we are facing serious problems which demand thoughtful and prayerful solutions. During those two days, I was again reminded that the only foundation for understanding and meaningful cooperation is the Word of God, apart from which, man only has opinions to offer.
While all of us could agree that Adolph Hitler was evil and that theologians in Germany who embraced him were greatly deceived, the conclusions as to the contemporary comparisons we face today were vastly different. I left glad I had attended and reminded that apart from God’s divine intervention, the left and the right will never agree on the solutions to America’s great challenges because we view the world through vastly different world views.
All in all, I was grateful to be included with such distinguished leaders in this symposium and again was reminded of how far God has taken Vision America in such a comparatively short time. Thank you for your continuing prayers and support as we strive to represent your values in the public square.