September 27, 2006
Volume 2, Number 33
1) Congress To Again Take Up Parental Notification Legislation
2) Millions Will "See You At The Pole" Today
3) NBC Tries To Water Down Religious content of "Veggie Tales"
4) Rallies and Pastor Mobilization Efforts...A Personal Report From Rick Scarborough
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Congress To Again Take Up Parental Notification Legislation
Before Congress adjourns at the end of this week, pro-life forces are expected to make another push for parental notification legislation. Bills have passed both the House and Senate making it a federal crime to transport a minor across state lines for an abortion in order to evade parental notification requirements in the child’s home state.
Under pressure from boyfriends, or lured by abortion-providers, minor girls frequently go out of state for abortions to avoid parental notification statutes, thus keeping parents in the dark about an operation that will effect their child’s physical, psychological and spiritual well-being.
Opinion polls show upwards of 80% of the public support parental notification.
Since July, Senate Democrats have thrown up procedural obstacles to a conference committee to reconcile House and Senate versions of the law. Yesterday, the House voted on and adopted the Senate's language by a vote of 264-153. But the bill still has to be voted on once more in the Senate, and Planned Parenthood’s favorite politicians are expected to make every effort to block such a vote. On July 25, the Senate version passed with 65 votes, including those of 14 Democrats. If pro-lifers can keep the support of 60 of those Senators, the party of death will be prevented from blocking a final vote.
Click here to send an urgent message to your U.S. Senators in support of this measure. We have also included a list of the 14 Senators that represent the swing votes. I urge you to make your voice heard on this life-and-death matter.
"See You At The Pole" Today
For the 17th consecutive year, millions of high school students will participate in “See You At The Pole” events. In all 50 states and 20 foreign countries, students will gather before classes at their school’s flag pole to pray for their classmates, teachers, community and country.
“See You At The Pole” events are student-initiated and led and take place before the start of the school day. Nevertheless, each year some over-zealous and ill-informed administrators try to stop these expressions of constitutionally protected speech.
Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, warns: “It is beyond question that public school students have a First Amendment right to participate in ‘See You At The Pole.’ The Supreme Court has unequivocally stated that students have a First Amendment right to pray before, during or after the school day. School officials have an affirmative duty to educate themselves regarding the First Amendment rights of students, rather than acting out of bigotry, religious bias or ignorance of the law.”
Given the violence that plagues our public schools (some require students to pass through metal detectors), I’m amazed that any administrator would object to students coming together to pray for the welfare of their schools and communities.
“See You At The Pole” is a hopeful sign for a nation that God has always bountifully blessed, and which has an obligation to acknowledge and praise Him in return.
NBC Tries To Water Down
Religious Content of "Veggie Tales"
The latest front in the culture war is a Saturday morning cartoon. Apparently, NBC believes the mild religious expression in episodes of the popular video “VeggieTales” is too controversial.
The series involves Vegetables that sing, dance and impart valuable life lessons. But NBC considers some of the content too much for children who can experience nudity and profanity on cable TV.
At the end of one episode, Bob The Tomato tells children, “Remember kids, God made you special and he loves you very much.” NBC executives claimed the 30-minute show was too long (it wasn’t) and demanded that the line be cut.
But it’s that very religious content that has made “VeggieTales” a sensation and a success. Since 1993, parents have purchased more than 52 million copies of “VeggieTales” videos at stores like Wal-Mart and Target.
Coincidently, last week it was announced that notwithstanding a nationwide protest by American Family Association, NBC will allow Madonna to include a mock crucifixion in her upcoming special.
Apparently, this denigration of Christianity is covered by artistic expression, but a cartoon with a religious message is going too far. What a world we live in, my friends.
To send a e-mail protesting NBC’s decision to censor “VeggieTales,” click here.
Rallies and Pastor Mobilization Efforts...A Personal Report From Rick Scarborough
This week I spoke to pastors and Christians in three states at rallies and conferences. Our objective was to call pastors and their congregations to action. Ten years ago I was told by many leaders of the pro-life movement that moving pastors to engage the culture was a waste of time; but now it seems that pastors are finally waking up, as many ministries are reaching out to them. To God is due all praise and glory.
In Springfield, Missouri, Alan Keyes and I conducted the fifth of five scheduled “Rally Against Human Cloning” gatherings across the state. Approximately 700 pastors and more than 5,000 Christians have attended these rallies. More significantly, we have held press conferences in every city, enabling us to communicate with millions of Christians and non-Christians, the truth about somatic cell nuclear transfer, or SCNT as they like to call it.
We are now garnering increasing attention in the national press as we expose the wicked truth about proponents’ efforts to peddle human cloning under the disguise of therapeutic cloning or SCNT.
In Springfield, we engaged over 100 pastors and their wives at a dinner and discussion of this issue which is before the voters of Missouri on November 7th. The rally that followed was attended by 800- 1000 residents of the area. They heard from a prominent scientist, Dr. Shao-Chun Chang, a local gynecologist, Dr. Scott McGill, Dr. Keyes and me. No one left confused about where we stood on the issue of cloning to kill. Dr. McGill discussed the impact such science, if advanced, will have on women.
We have now scheduled two more rallies on October 28 and 30 in Missouri featuring former Vatican Ambassador and Boston Mayor, Ray Flynn and Alan Keyes. Details will be posted on our website soon.
On Friday morning I flew to Washington DC where Tommye joined me. I had the distinct privilege of being invited to join such distinguished leaders as Dr. James Dobson, Tony Perkins, Bill Bennet, Don Wildmon, Gary Bauer, Newt Gingrich, Don Feder, Ann Coulter, Senator Sam Brownback, Gov. Mike Huckabee, and a host of others, at the national Value Voters’ Summit, sponsored by Family Research Council and Focus on The Family. I spoke for thirty minutes during one of the breakout sessions on Saturday afternoon, on the subject, “In Defense of Mixing Church and State.” Baptist press and other media carried much of my address.
While in DC, Alan Keyes and I met with leaders from South Dakota, and representatives of several pro-life and pro-family organizations, who understand that pastors must engage the culture on the vital issues of the day. Vision America will be working with Focus on the Family Action and others in South Dakota, throughout October, conducting a series of rallies across the state, ending in the capital city for a giant rally with Tony Perkins of FRC. Our message, as always, will be simple: Pastors have a moral obligation, Christian duty, and American citizenship responsibility, to lead their people to be salt and light. The Constitution of the United States guarantees the right to fulfill that role and Vision America exists to assist them in doing so.
On Sunday morning, after attending a worship service at the hotel led by Bishop Harry Jackson, Tommye and I left for Burlington, Vermont. We drove the 650-mile trip, enjoying the spectacular landscape of New England in the fall.
A wonderful businessman, Steve Cable, who has a heart for spiritual renewal, attended our national “War on Christians and Values Voters” conference in DC last spring and was inspired to hold a similar conference in Vermont. He called me several months ago and requested our help in organizing a one-day pastors conference in Vermont. Our office assisted Steve in securing Dr. Laurence White, Dr. Keyes, Rabbi Aryeh Spero, Bill Federer and others to lead the first-ever one-day pastors’ conference in the home state of Howard Dean.
More than 50 pastors, as well as 30-40 other religious leaders, gathered at the Wyndham Hotel overlooking a beautiful lake with Adirondack Mountains in full view. In that idyllic setting, it was easy to forget that Vermont is among the most liberal of all states and therefore sorely in need of moral revival.
The pastors understand their role in restoring their state, and the time was very well spent. Tommye and I returned to our haven in East Texas on Tuesday tired but greatly encouraged.
God is blessing our efforts more than at any time in our 10-year history and your continuing gifts and prayers make all of this possible. Please prayerfully consider investing the largest gift you can to assist us in our cause, to either our tax deductible arm, Vision America or our non-tax deductible affiliate, Vision America Action. As always, your non-tax deductible gift to Vision America Action is doubly appreciated as it frees me to do what must be done without the hassle of the IRS and others who seek to silence preachers. A gift of any size to either entity will be deeply appreciated.
To those of your who give every month as a member of our Patriot Partner Team, my heartfelt thanks!