The American Legion Opposes Last-minute DADT Repeal

December 17, 2010

WASHINGTON, (MetroCatholic) — The American Legion remains strongly opposed to a renewed and intensified Congressional effort to hastily repeal the Pentagon’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law during Congress’s rapidly expiring lame duck session. The House is expecting to begin debate today on a stand-alone repeal of the military’s ban on gay servicemembers revealing their orientation. Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD) and Rep. Patrick Murphy (PA) have been working on the issue, and their language tracks with a bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate last week. The Senate may consider a similar bill later this week.

The leader of the nation’s largest veterans’ service organization expressed alarm over this latest effort to swiftly overturn the controversial law. “One must ask, what’s the rush?” said Jimmie L. Foster, national commander of The American Legion, “and why should this matter of social policy take precedence over the far more critical matter of national security?”

Foster was referring to repeated failure within Congress to pass the overarching National Defense Authorization Act which authorizes appropriations for military activities of the Department of Defense, military construction, equipment acquisition, and military personnel strengths for the 2011 fiscal year. The bill has been set aside in the Senate due to a number of controversial provisions including Don’t Ask Don’t Tell repeal language.

“While our combat troops continue to focus on their mission on the war-front throughout the world, Congress can’t focus on funding those very service members,” said Tim Tetz, director of the Legion’s legislative division. “Congress should rush to pass the Defense Authorization Act and take whatever time is necessary to understand the nuances a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell would have on our nation’s fighting forces.”

The American Legion has repeatedly asserted that now — in the midst of war — is simply not the time for social experimentation. This cautionary message was the same offered by Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos and the leadership of the Army and Air Force. They all agreed in testimony last week before the Senate Armed Services Committee that repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell would be a distraction upon those in combat roles today.

Robert W. Spanogle, a past national commander of The American Legion, is critical of the rush to repeal DADT . “Count me in with the Commandant and those soldiers and Marines in the mud on the front lines in Afghanistan and Iraq, the tip of the spear,” said Spanogle. “Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed said they believed there would be a negative impact on their unit’s effectiveness (with a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell).”

While the House and Senate remain committed to passage of a repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, critics join The American Legion in questioning the need to rush this issue to a vote. More than 13 hearings were held when the original law was enacted and the House hasn’t held hearings on the findings of the Department of Defense survey of service members.

“The American Legion remains convinced a repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ cannot be easily implemented and could compromise the effectiveness of crucially needed fighting forces. Political expediency should not take precedence over providing adequate time for debate. There is no reason this must be decided in the next two weeks when it has been in place for seventeen years,” concluded Foster.

Is Minnesota Democratic Leadership Anti-Catholic?

October 29, 2010

ST. PAUL, Minn (MetroCatholic) — Yesterday the Catholic Defense League (CDL) issued a letter to Democrat-Farm-Labor (DFL) Party Chairman Brian Melendez demanding an immediate apology for political advertisements they believe denigrate the Catholic Church. The series of ads feature Catholic imagery superimposed with slanderous statements. One of the postcards features a Catholic altar with a statue of St. Anthony holding the baby Jesus, an icon recognized by most Catholics.

Instead of issuing an apology, Melendez defended the mailings. Melendez was quoted in yesterday’s Star Tribune as saying “these are good ads.”

“As if issuing these advertisements were not bad enough, Mr. Melendez has now added fuel to the fire by refusing to apologize to Catholics,” said Dick Houck, CDL’s president. “This leaves many people with the impression that Minnesota Democrat Party leaders are anti-Catholic.”

“This appears to be another instance in which secular humanists are trying to undermine the moral authority of the Catholic Church,” said Pat Phillips, CDL board member. “They would like nothing better than to see the elimination of religious influence within our society.”

The Catholic Defense League is a lay Catholic apostolate organization dedicated to the defense of the Catholic Church by protecting its bishops, priests and religious from unwarranted attacks or misleading information. For more information, visit www.cdlmn.org.

See image of the ads here: http://www.minnesotacatholicvote.com/images/ThreeMailersLarge.jpg

SOURCE  Catholic Defense League
Catholic Defense League
CONTACT: Ray Marshall, Catholic Defense League, +1-651-766-7896
Web Site: http://www.cdlmn.org

Day Gardner, National Black Pro-Life Union Comments on Horrifying Depictions of Abortion Used in DC Campaign Ads

October 28, 2010

WASHINGTON (MetroCatholic) — The following is submitted by Day Gardner of the National Black Pro-Life Union:

GOP Candidate Missy Reilly Smith has brought the horror of abortion to the forefront in her recent campaign ads.

I’ve seen the ads and I’m a little confused about the hub-bub.

I mean, we see all kinds of blatant violence on television — the sensational fake blood and gore produced in Hollywood, the brutal reality of the atrocities in Sudan, Darfur, the Middle East, Mexico — and Detroit, not to mention the extreme violence sold to children in video games. Reality TV has taken over the airwaves with produced police programs complete with dangerous chases that end in devastating crashes and/or real photos of people who have been shot, stabbed, burned or strangled. Families gather to see fight shows and cheer as grown men pummel each other into bloody heaps — the bloodier, the better! In this age of modern technology and Reality TV, we’ve seen it all — or have we?

Missy Smith’s ads are different because they show the reality of abortion. Abortion is cruel, vicious and bloody and kills 5000 babies a day in the United States of America.

Since 1973, more than 50 million children have been decapitated, crushed, dismembered and shredded before being dumped in trash cans or having their little hearts, brains and other body parts sold to the highest bidder.

If the photos of aborted babies in Missy Smith’s ads are so horrendous and repulsive that YouTube and other media find it necessary to ban them from public viewing, then we must ask why is it legal to kill children this way?

I remember way back — when Jesse Jackson spoke at the 1977 March for Life asking the question: “What happens to the moral fabric of a nation that accepts the aborting of the life of a baby without a pang of conscience?”

Missy’s ads show the truth of what abortion does to children. Yes, it’s very hard to see the truth — but it is truth no less. Bottom line — abortion hurts women and kills children — a reality we must see, face and then…end.

The National Black Pro-Life Union proudly endorses Missy Smith for Congress. We urge voters to become Superheroes — elect Missy and save the children, save the country, save the day!

The National Black Pro-Life Union is an organization founded to serve as a clearing house to coordinate the flow of communications among all African American pro-life organizations and individuals in order to better network and combine resources. We realize that if we are to be successful, it is necessary to share information and/or resources as well as “who gets the credit.” We acknowledge that the real credit for any good thing always goes to GOD — not man.

Attempts by Abortion Clinic to Stop Prayer and Pro-Life Speech on Public Sidewalk Foiled

October 26, 2010

BIRMINGHAM (MetroCatholic) — On Friday, October 22, 2010, Circuit Court Judge Edward Ramsey for the 10th Judicial District of Jefferson County, Alabama, issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) prohibiting the Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust, their founder, Jeff White, and others, from engaging in constitutionally protected activity on the public sidewalk surrounding the New Woman, All Women abortion clinic (NWAWAC) in Birmingham, Alabama. Prohibited activities included prayer, holding signs and oral communication with any other person.

The order was issued without notice to White and others based on allegations that they failed to comply with a decades-old injunction issued by the United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama. However, there was no failure to comply because the injunction did not apply to Mr. White or the Survivors.

Even though NWAWAC was aware the federal injunction was not enforceable against White or the Survivors, NWAWAC circumvented the district court by obtaining an order from Judge Ramsey of the circuit court. Because there was no notice and no opportunity for White and others to be heard, Judge Ramsey was unaware of the procedural history of the federal case at the time the order was issued.

When Mr. White learned of the TRO, a hearing was immediately sought before Judge Ramsey by Birmingham attorney Trenton Garmon on White’s behalf, with a request that the order be dissolved. At the end of the business day Judge Ramsey told Garmon that the order would not be set aside and that Mr. Garmon would have to return on Monday, October 25, 2010, for a hearing on whether the order should be dissolved.

The injustice of the TRO is readily apparent - earlier the day the order issued Survivors witnessed two women leave the clinic based on information given to them from the public sidewalk. If pro-lifers are not allowed on the sidewalk lives will be lost to abortion.

This morning the hearing was held and the TRO dissolved. “Just as the prophet Elijah sent a message to King Ahab we are sending one to NWAWAC - Mr. White and Survivor’s are standing their ground. This is America, pro-life citizens have the right to stand on the public sidewalk and freely speak in opposition to abortion, and they will!” says Attorney Garmon.

Life Legal Defense Foundation was established in 1989, and is a non-profit organization composed of attorneys and other concerned citizens, committed to the sanctity of human life. Life Legal routinely defends Mr. White and the Survivors and will fund Mr. Garmon’s work on their behalf. For more information call Dana Cody, (707) 337-6889.

New York Times Falsely Claims National Cancer Institute Denied Abortion-Breast Cancer Link

October 14, 2010

McKinney, TX (MetroCatholic) — The stridently pro-abortion New York Times (NY Times), troubled that the abortion-breast cancer (ABC) link is bad for the abortion industry’s business, published an article yesterday by Susan Dominus, who falsely claimed that crisis pregnancy centers give women information that “has been medically refuted (including an old standby, rejected by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) that abortions cause higher rates of breast cancer).” [1]

“Dominus didn’t read the NCI’s Summary Report,” said Karen Malec, president of the Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer. “The agency acknowledged one of the three ways abortion raises risk - through the loss of the risk-reducing effect of childbearing. Medical texts say increased childbearing, starting before age 24, and increased lifetime duration of breastfeeding sharply reduce risk. Therefore, the woman who has a full term pregnancy has a lower risk than the one who has an abortion. The NCI contradicted itself by denying abortion is associated with increased breast cancer risk.

“NARAL Pro-Choice America knows the ABC link is bad for business. Knowledge of a link between combined (estrogen + progestin) hormone replacement therapy and breast cancer caused thousands to stop using it. NARAL is turning the tables by attacking crisis pregnancy centers that tell the truth about the ABC link.”

The bankrupt NY Times has a history of belligerence against scientific evidence supporting an ABC link. It has never informed women about the risk reducing effect of childbearing in comparison to abortion, which doesn’t reduce risk. See our commentary for a discussion of the Times’ bias.

“NARAL’s abortionists should be made to disclose the recognized breast cancer risks of abortion and the pill,” said Malec.

“Either the Times is guilty of sloppy reporting or it still has writers, like Jayson Blair, committing journalistic fraud and representing fiction as honest journalism. Its reckless disregard for women’s lives is comparable to that of University of Texas sniper Charles Whitman, who mowed down 14 people from a tower. The Times and the NCI, however, is responsible for thousands of deaths.”

The Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer is an international women’s organization founded to protect the health and save the lives of women by educating and providing information on abortion as a risk factor for breast cancer.

References available online at:
www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_ releases/101013/index.htm

Catholic Charities USA Leadership Meets President Obama

September 22, 2010

WASHINGTON, (MetroCatholic) — Rev. Larry Snyder, President and CEO of Catholic Charities USA, accompanied by executive leadership, members of the board of trustees, and representatives from the Council of Diocesan Directors, joined President Obama yesterday for a private meeting in the Oval Office. President Obama recognized the social service organization for their 100 years of service, discussed with them their bipartisan legislative initiative related to poverty relief and congratulated them on their upcoming Centennial celebrations.

From September 25-28, 2010, in Washington, DC, Catholic Charities USA will celebrate 100 years of service, advocacy and convening with its historic Centennial Gathering. As it moves into its second century of service, Catholic Charities USA advocates for innovative strategies that promote real, sustainable change to effectively reduce poverty in America.

Catholic Charities USA was founded in 1910 “to bring about a sense of solidarity” among those in charitable ministries. Since 1910, Catholic Charities USA has encouraged professional social work practice, provided opportunities for training and networking, and served as a national voice and expert on poverty issues. For more information, visit http://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org/centennial.

Catholic Charities USA’s members provide help and create hope for more than 9 million people a year regardless of religious, social, or economic backgrounds. For almost 300 years, Catholic Charities agencies have worked to reduce poverty by providing a myriad of vital services in their communities, ranging from health care and job training to food and housing. In 2010, Catholic Charities USA celebrates its centennial anniversary.

Catholic Charities USA Presents Centennial Medal to the Ladies of Charity

September 17, 2010

NASHVILLE, Tenn  (MetroCatholic) — Catholic Charities USA, the 100-year-old social service network working to reduce poverty in America, today presented a specially-commissioned Centennial Medal to the Ladies of Charity in recognition of their deep commitment to the vision and mission of Catholic Charities USA.

Candy Hill, Senior Vice President of Social Policy and Government Affairs for Catholic Charities USA, presented the medal at the Ladies of Charity of the United States of America 10th National Assembly in Nashville, TN.  Ms. Hill also provided a keynote address, “Wisdom and Wonder: The Emerging Role of Women in the Peace and Prosperity of Humanity.”

The Ladies of Charity is an organization of Catholic lay women founded by Saint Vincent de Paul in the Diocese of Lyon, France in 1617. This year, the Ladies of Charity recognize and celebrate the 350th anniversary of the death and resurrection of their founders, Saint Vincent De Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac.

Catholic Charities USA was founded in 1910 “to bring about a sense of solidarity” among those in charitable ministries. Since 1910, Catholic Charities USA has encouraged professional social work practice, provided opportunities for training and networking, and served as a national voice and expert on poverty issues. The Centennial is a time to reflect on past accomplishments and renew the commitment to serve those in need.

For more information about Catholic Charities USA’s Centennial activities, visit http://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org/centennial

Catholic Charities USA’s members provide help and create hope for more than 9 million people a year regardless of religious, social, or economic backgrounds. For almost 300 years, Catholic Charities agencies have worked to reduce poverty by providing a myriad of vital services in their communities, ranging from health care and job training to food and housing. In 2010, Catholic Charities USA celebrates its centennial anniversary.

Mathcounts Reinstates Homeschool Teams

August 23, 2010

PURCELLVILLE, Va. (MetroCatholic) — Last Friday, Mathcounts, a prestigious foundation dedicated to advancing math skills among middle school students, partially reversed its August 17th ban on homeschool teams.

For the upcoming 2010-11 school year homeschool teams who participated in last year’s Mathcounts competition will be grandfathered in and allowed to compete this year. “We appreciate Mathcounts making this change,” said Michael Smith, president of HSLDA. “Many homeschoolers were already hard at work preparing for this year’s competition,” he added.

The initial ban on homeschool teams stemmed from Mathcounts’ difficulties identifying homeschool competitors and ensuring that students from public, private, and homeschools are treated equally.

In order to make sure all options were being considered representatives from HSLDA and Mathcounts met on Friday, August 20th. The policy change was the result of the meeting as well as a commitment to find a long-term solution which would allow homeschoolers to compete as teams.

Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is a 27-year-old, 85,000 member non-profit organization and the preeminent association advocating the legal right of parents to homeschool their children.

Homeschoolers Count — National Math Competition Bans Homeschoolers

August 17, 2010

WASHINGTON (MetroCatholic) — Concerned Women for America has confirmed that Math Counts, a national math competition for teams and individual students in grades 6-8, will not allow homeschoolers to form teams and compete in the 2010-2011 school year. The Math Counts board unanimously decided to exclude homeschoolers in response to a few situations in which “super teams” were formed by pulling certain gifted students from public schools and labeling them as homeschool teams.

Math Counts has provided unique opportunities for gifted students to compete and to shine. The program is comparable to the National Spelling Bee. Winners on a national level are rewarded and meet the president at the White House.

These examples of cheating obviously mar the competition, but homeschoolers as a whole should not be completely wiped from the competition.

Penny Nance, CEO for Concerned Women for America, said, “It appears that the objectionable behavior was committed mostly, if not wholly, by non-homeschool kids, yet the Math Counts board chose to punish homeschoolers. Homeschoolers have excelled in the competition. Is this another example of punishing those who excel so that others can feel good about themselves? These students should not be punished for the misdeeds of a few cheaters. Homeschoolers may still be permitted to compete as individuals, but the reality is that far fewer students will be able to participate if homeschool teams are banned from involvement.”

Concerned Women for America is the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.

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Activists Score Major First Amendment and Pro-Life Victory in Washington, D.C.

August 13, 2010

dc prayWASHINGTON (MetroCatholic) — The City of Washington, D.C. reverses their position and will allow prayer and free speech activities on the public sidewalk leading up to Planned Parenthood.

Photo: Pat Mahoney just prior to his arrest on June 8

For the past several months, Washington D.C. police officers have been threatening peaceful pro-life activists with arrest for simple praying and counseling on the public sidewalk in front of Planned Parenthood.

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, was arrested on June 8 for simply praying and reading from the Bible on that public sidewalk.

However, late this week, Rev. Mahoney was told by Washington, D.C. police officials that the City had reversed their position and will allow prayer and free speech activities on the public sidewalk.

Their decision came on the eve of a project called “A Time to Stand,” in which pro-life activists from around the country were coming to challenge the ban on free speech and were willing to risk arrest for public prayer.

Hundreds of activists will still gather in front of Planned Parenthood on Saturday, August 14, at 10:00 A.M. to pray, worship and counsel on the public sidewalk and embrace the First Amendment and religious freedom.

Planned Parenthood is located at 1108 16th Street NW in Washington D.C.

The activists would also like to thank the American Center for Law and Justice who was representing them and did an incredible job of fighting for the truth.

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, states,

“We thank God for this important victory for free speech, public prayer and the First Amendment. The City of Washington, D.C. got it right when they reversed their tragic decision to arrest American citizens for simply praying on a public sidewalk.

“It would have been unthinkable for our nation’s capital to ban and prohibit prayer on a public sidewalk, just blocks from the White House, to protect abortion and Planned Parenthood.

“There is a word of caution however. If we did not stand for our rights and go to jail; if we did not mount an aggressive legal effort and if we did not invite people do come from around the country to pray on the public sidewalk even under the threat of arrest, that sidewalk would still be closed to the First Amendment.

“This struggle reminds us all of the famous quote from Thomas Jefferson in which he said, ‘Eternal Vigilance is the price of liberty.’ We must recognize that our rights, freedoms and liberties must be constantly defended.

“Finally, this episode shows the lack of integrity and commitment that Planned Parenthood has to the First Amendment and the truth. They constantly lied about the nature of that sidewalk saying it was ‘private’ when they knew it was public. It should remind every American if an organization has no respect for the dignity and sanctity of life why would they respect the dignity of free speech?”

For more information or interviews call:

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney at 540.538.4741 202.547.1735

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