• Liberals' Reaction to Mueller Report Shows They Prioritize Politics Over Truth

    Liberals’ Reaction to Mueller Report Shows They Prioritize Politics Over Truth

    So now special counsel Robert Mueller has issued his report, and it turns out after two years of investigation, at an estimated cost of $40 million, that “Russiagate” was fake news.

    Much to the dismay of Democrats, Mueller found no collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and the Russians to influence the 2016 election.

    Who are the winners here? Of course, the American people—and, of course, President Donald Trump and the Republican Party.

    And, we might say, also House Speaker Nancy READ MORE...

  • Competition, Not Government Control, Can Make Health Care Cheaper

    Competition, Not Government Control, Can Make Health Care Cheaper

    In a new Gallup poll, 35 percent say government is the worst problem facing the U.S. In the 55 years that Gallup has asked the question—”What do you think is the most important problem facing this country today?”—this is the highest percentage of people who have identified the government as the nation’s worst problem.

    Given how many Americans see the government as a large problem, you have to wonder about so many Democratic politicians’ ambitions to give government increasing power READ MORE...

  • Socialism Has Already Hurt America

    Socialism Has Already Hurt America

    President Donald Trump was principled and politically astute to address, in his State of the Union, the horrors taking place now in Venezuela, and then to declare:

    “Tonight we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.”

    Venezuela is indeed a poster child for what happens when a nation’s economic machinery falls under political control.

    Over the last five years, per The Wall Street Journal, Venezuela’s economy shrank by 35 percent and poverty tripled from 48 to 87 percent.

    According to Gallup, 71 percent of Venezuelans say they can’t afford food, 47 percent say they can’t afford shelter, just 15 percent say they are satisfied with the availability of quality health care, and 35 percent say they are satisfied with their standard of living.

    Thirty-six percent of Venezuelans—51 percent of those between 15 and 29—say they would leave the country permanently if they could.

    But if it is so clear that socialism is a formula for economic disaster, why does the idea still conjure up support?

    In a Gallup poll of last year, 57 percent of Democrats, compared to 16 percent of Republicans, say they have a “positive view of socialism.”

    Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman says it’s semantics.

    Krugman mocks Trump, saying that “there is essentially no one in American political life who advocates such things” as government control of industry, as is the case in Venezuela.

    When Democrats say “socialism,” says Krugman, they really mean “social democracy”—a market economy with a social safety net and use of the tax system as an equalizer.

    The issue really isn’t how we technically define socialism. The issue is really the extent to which we are free.

    What difference is it really if a firm is privately owned, but the government has vast latitude to regulate what it does? Or if a private firm pays me but government taxes away a large chunk of what I earn?

    Venezuela is, of course, the extreme case. Total collapse as result of political despots taking over everything.

    But socialism is not like good wine, which, in moderation, might not hurt and might even be beneficial.

    Every step in which economic freedom is cut back bears costs.

    We see what is happening now, as the U.S. economy surges back to life as a result of cutting back regulation and taxes.

    But our nation has not totally escaped the Venezuelan phenomenon.

    America has entire communities in distress for the same reasons that Venezuela has fallen apart—political control over economic affairs. Life in our poor communities is in the grip of socialism, not capitalism.

    Government housing, government health care, government schools, government welfare programs.

    There are 31 million people living in areas of high economic distress, now designated as “opportunity zones.” The average poverty rate in these zones is 28.7 percent. The average household income is 40 percent below the national average, and 36.5 percent of prime-age adults are not working. Fifty-six percent of these 31 million are nonwhite minorities.

    The president’s new opportunity zone initiative, providing tax incentives to direct investment capital into these neighborhoods, aims to change realities with the same passion that the president spoke against socialism for the rest of the country in his State of the Union address.

    How do countries wind up going in the wrong direction?

    British playwright George Bernard Shaw captured it when he said, “A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.”

    Political demagogues tap into the frustrations of those who are struggling, or tap into the ambitions of those who long for power, and sell them Hollywood dreams—and lies—of a better life. Once they convince them to turn over power, the nightmare begins.

    Life has no shortcuts. Freedom, hard work, and personal responsibility are the one and only path to prosperity.

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  • Trump's Agenda Is a Winning Formula for Black America

    Trump’s Agenda Is a Winning Formula for Black America

    My fellow Americans.

    Given that the Democratic Party chose to select a recently defeated political candidate to give a response to the president’s State of the Union address because she is black and a woman, I feel I should also step up and give my response.

    Although I have not recently lost a governor’s contest, I am black and I am a woman.

    Democrats want Americans,
    particularly minority Americans, to believe that a left-wing agenda is what
    they need and what will define America’s future.

    I am here to say today that the
    agenda of the left is the problem, not the solution.

    For too many years the left—and I am talking here about those with a hard-core secular humanist and socialist agenda—have been dominating discourse in our minority communities.

    America’s future is in the values that defined it from the beginning. Christianity, capitalism, and the Constitution.

    When I say Christianity, I do not
    mean to deny the bedrock of religious freedom. I mean to say that theses values
    must be predominant and define our nation and our culture.

    There is no freedom without family, and there is no family without faith. It’s as simple as that.

    Should every American be free to choose? Yes. But recognize that in 2018,
    growth of the American population was the lowest it’s been in 80 years. The
    Census Bureau projects that in 16 years there will be more Americans over 65
    than under 18. Without children, our future is in danger.

    Our future is about life, not the
    61 million abortions since Roe v. Wade.

    The effect of the left’s agenda
    on our black communities has been devastating. Single-parent homes and
    out-of-wedlock births have tripled since the 1960s. What kind of future can we
    expect for our black children when they so often come from low-income
    single-parent households?

    We must restore the integrity of
    family in all American communities. This can only happen with a revival of
    faith. For sure this will not happen with the sick message from the left of
    moral relativism and nihilism.

    Capitalism is also the bedrock of
    our future.

    Freedom is about individuals taking responsibility for their lives. It is about building, creating, working, saving, and owning. This is capitalism.

    It is not a culture of
    victimhood, of blaming everyone else for your challenges and your problems.

    No. We don’t want that. We want freedom. This is where our future is. Personal empowerment comes with personal responsibility.

    America is about you, not politicians. And the Constitution is the handbook that our Founders provided us to keep government limited and keep politicians out of our lives.

    Let’s honor it and not try to
    destroy it like the left wants to do.

    America is in a fiscal and moral crisis. We have budget deficits and national debt like this nation has never experienced before.

    This bankruptcy is the product of
    a half-century of increasingly adopting welfare state policies. We can turn it
    around.

    This president, who the left is
    attacking as a racist and a dictator, has gotten America growing faster than it
    has in years, with black and Latino unemployment rates the lowest they have
    been in history.

    He is digging us out of the hole
    that the left wants to get us back in.

    I am one black woman who believes in America and loves this country, who believes that our future lies in Christianity, capitalism, and the Constitution.

    And I am here to tell you that tens of millions of Americans of all backgrounds are with me—and are with President Donald Trump.

    Let’s stand up and fight, fight
    those that hate our nation and what it stands for.

    Let’s win back our nation, our freedom, and our God for our future, for our children. God Bless America.

    Distributed by Creators.com.

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  • The Breakdown of Family and Religion Explains France's Social Unrest

    The Breakdown of Family and Religion Explains France’s Social Unrest

    As France is gripped by civil disorder, many commentators identify, quite correctly, as the culprit the outsized burden that France’s bloated welfare state places on its citizens.

    According a recent report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the highest tax burden in the industrialized world is in France—46.1 percent of gross domestic product.

    In the United States, it is 27 percent, which includes taxes paid at all levels of government—federal, state, and local.

    Welfare state spending in France is 32 percent of GDP, almost double that of the U.S., meaning that $1 out of $3 generated by the French economy is captured by the government and redistributed into social/welfare spending.

    But let’s recall that all this government was put in place in the name of making life better for France’s citizens.

    There’s plenty of analysis regarding the French situation, as there is in our own country, about how to streamline and reform government programs and deliver the same quality of services at a reduced spending and tax burden on citizens.

    But these discussions invariably fail to look at the full scope of human reality at play.

    The vast expansion of the welfare state, both in Europe and in the United States, occurred in tandem with a weakening of the family. And weakening of the family generally occurs in an environment of weakening of religion.

    When I speak and tell audiences that today 4 in 10 babies in the United States are born to unwed mothers, compared with less than 1 in 10 babies 50 years ago, I hear gasps.

    But in France, out of wedlock births stand at 6 in 10.

    Not surprisingly, a recent survey by Pew Research of 34 European countries shows France to be one of the least religious.

    Eleven percent in France say religion is very important in the their lives; 22 percent say they attend religious services at least monthly; 11 percent say they pray daily; and 11 percent say they believe in God with absolute certainty.

    This is in stark contrast to the United States, where 49 percent say religion is very important to them, 36 percent say they attend religious services at least weekly, 55 percent say they pray daily, and 75 percent say they believe in God.

    Only 47 percent of French people say marriage infidelity is morally unacceptable compared with 84 percent of Americans.

    So although the hold of Christianity on the American public has weakened over the years, compared with France it remains a quite strong force.

    This has important bearing on the welfare state crisis, at home and abroad.

    As religion weakens, family structure weakens, and as family structure weakens, government strengthens and grows. Where people once looked to their parents to transmit values, love, and care, increasingly they are looking to government.

    The problem is that it doesn’t work.

    Traditional family and marriage reflect eternal values that cannot be replaced by government. These values—where husband and wife join in holy matrimony, embodying and transmitting truth that is greater than their own personal, egotistical proclivities—translate to children, learning, work, creativity, and productivity.

    In 1958, 82 percent of Americans said religion can solve “most or all of today’s problems” and 7 percent said religion is “old-fashioned and out of date.” By 2015, 57 percent said religion can solve our problems and 30 percent said religious is “out of date.”

    Over this period of time, American family structure significantly deteriorated, and our welfare state—although still nowhere near what’s happening in France—has become huge, bloated, and a major fiscal drain on the nation.

    We surely should work to streamline and reform the welfare state. But we shouldn’t lose perspective that the core problem is the integrity of the traditional family. This is where our answers lie.

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  • Thinking About What's Right in America

    Thinking About What’s Right in America

    Amid this holiday season of reflection, I’m thinking about America’s future.

    A new poll from Gallup serves up some sobering data regarding how young Americans feel about their country.

    Gallup asked the question, “Do you think the U.S. has a unique character that makes it the greatest country in the world, or don’t you think so?”

    Eighty percent said “yes,” America is the greatest country in 2010, and 78 percent said “yes” in 2018.

    However, among 18- to 34-year-olds, 80 percent said “yes” in 2010, but this dropped by 18 percentage points in 2018 to 62 percent.

    It’s troubling to think that now 4 out of 10 young Americans do not see their nation as exceptional and the greatest in the world.

    Maybe there is a sense creeping into our youth that America is no longer the land of opportunity that it once was.

    In a 2017 Pew Research Global Attitudes and Trends survey, only 37 percent of Americans said they believed so when asked, “When children today grow up, will they be better off financially than their parents?”

    This compared with 82 percent in China (in 2016), 69 percent in Chile, and 50 percent in Israel.

    According to recent data from the Brookings Institution, just 50 percent of those born in 1984 earn more than their parents, compared with 61 percent of those born in 1970 and 79 percent of those born in 1950.

    But if America’s youth are losing a sense that this is a land of dreams, this sentiment doesn’t seem to be shared by the million immigrants who arrive in the U.S. every year.

    According to a new study by the National Foundation for American Policy, 55 percent of privately held startup companies in the U.S. now worth more than a billion dollars were started by immigrants from 25 different countries.

    The study reports that the collective value of these firms founded by immigrants is $248 billion and each company employs an average of 1,200 people.

    Most of these immigrant entrepreneurs came to the U.S. to study as international students and chose to stay and become citizens. However, some arrived as refugees and were sponsored by family members.

    This all tells me that America is still a land of dreams and opportunity. Are there things wrong with this country? Certainly. But there still is plenty that is right.

    Those who choose to uproot from nations all over the world to come here and start their lives anew are interested in what is right, not what is wrong.

    I like this quote from former TV personality Art Linkletter, who observed, “Things turn out the best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.”

    There’s an important point here. Success is not just about one’s circumstances, but also what is happening inside of each individual—one’s character.

    The holidays are a good time to think about this.

    I suggest two things. First, let’s look at what is right about America. And second, let every American ask themselves if they truly believe they are the best they can be, and if not, why not?

    Let’s each take personal responsibility to make ourselves and our country as great as possible and stop thinking that it’s others and circumstances that block our path.

    I think the nation would soar, even with the things that are wrong, if all Americans got out of bed each morning with the sense that what happens to them is not because of anything but what they themselves choose to do.

    And, if at the same time, we related to ourselves and everyone else as created in the image of God.

    We all would discover how much power each of us has and we all would discover how great America is, because it is free.

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  • A Lesson in Racial Politics From Florida

    A Lesson in Racial Politics From Florida

    Now that, finally, the elections in Florida have reached a conclusion, there are lessons worth learning. One is on the subject of race.

    There was a fateful anomaly in racial voting in the governor’s race between Democrat Andrew Gillum and Republican Rick DeSantis, now Florida’s governor-elect.

    Given that Gillum, formerly mayor of Tallahassee, was running to become the first black governor of Florida, we might have expected black enthusiasm for his candidacy on the order of the waves of black enthusiasm for the presidential candidacy of Barak Obama.

    But it didn’t happen.

    Gillum received a lower percentage of the black vote than did Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, who lost to Florida Republican Rick Scott in the Senate race.

    White Democrat Nelson got 90 percent of the black vote and Republican Scott got 10 percent.

    In the governor’s race, black Democrat Gillum got 86 percent of the black vote, four percentage points less than Nelson, against Republican DeSantis’ 14 percent.

    Given the razor-thin margins, that difference in black support meant a lot.

    When Gillum finally conceded the election, he was behind by 33,683 votes. Each one percent of the black vote equated to about 10,000 votes. So if Gillum had received 90 percent of the black vote, as did Nelson, rather than 86 percent, he could well have had another 40,000 votes, which would have been his margin of victory.

    Forty-thousand votes is about 35 percent of the 112,911 votes by which Donald Trump won Florida in 2016. It’s 55 percent of the 73,189 votes by which Barack Obama won Florida in 2012.

    So understanding why Gillum received 4 percentage points less of the black vote than Nelson, and why DeSantis received 4 percentage points more of the black vote than Scott could make all the difference in what presidential candidate wins Florida in 2020.

    Adding to the puzzle is the fact that racial politics played a high-profile and nasty role in the Gillum-DeSantis contest.

    Gillum was aggressive in his allegations of racism against DeSantis. “Now, I’m not calling Mr. DeSantis a racist, I’m simply saying the racists believe he is racist,” he said. He accused DeSantis of getting financial support from white supremacist groups and speaking at their events.

    DeSantis, a conservative former Republican congressman, made his support of Trump a centerpiece of his campaign, and President Trump campaigned for him in Florida.

    So how does this all compute?

    One convincing line of speculation is that DeSantis campaigned aggressively on parental choice in education, and keeping in place and expanding the tax-credit scholarship program enacted under former Republican Gov. Jeb Bush.

    Gillum campaigned on closing down the program, which empowers parents to use these funds to send their children to charter and private schools.

    Polls consistently show that blacks support parental choice in education. And for good reason. Black children are disproportionately trapped in failing, violent public schools. Black parents want alternatives for their kids.

    Gillum took the left-wing party line on education choice, against the sentiments of black constituents. This could have made all the difference.

    The lesson here is that blacks care about issues more than they care about skin color.

    It’s an important lesson for Republicans going forward. They need to tune in to black concerns, which often are not the same as those of whites, and explain how the best solutions for those concerns are the conservative solutions.

    In addition to education, this means addressing issues such as housing, urban violence, and prison reform.

    The governor’s race in Florida gives us good reason to believe that a more aggressive, targeted effort by Republicans in reaching out to minority communities could make all the difference in the outcome of the presidential election in 2020.

    COPYRIGHT 2018 STAR PARKER

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  • 2018 Midtern Election Reveals Opening for Republicans With Young Blacks

    2018 Midtern Election Reveals Opening for Republicans With Young Blacks

    Buried in the mounds of data fleshing out what happened in the midterm elections is an interesting take on blacks.

    Nationwide data on black voting in this election cycle do not point to much change. Various polls over recent months seemed to indicate that blacks were starting to warm up to Republicans and President Donald Trump.

    But blacks went 90 percent for Democrats and 8 percent for Republicans. Pretty much business as usual.

    However, digging down, we find something interesting.

    Blacks ages 18 to 29 voted 82 percent for Democrats and 14 percent for Republicans. That seems to point to change taking place among young blacks.

    Lending support to this conclusion is the fact that in the 2014 midterms, 18- to 29-year-old blacks voted in concert with the overall average: 88 percent for Democrats and 11 percent for Republicans.

    Either we have a fluke in this year’s midterms or some kind of change in political thinking is taking hold among young African-Americans.

    I think there is good reason to believe the latter. Of course, where it goes depends on how Republicans choose to think about and handle the situation.

    Adding to this curiosity is something else of interest. The inclination to vote Republican as a function of age is the complete reverse for blacks as it is for whites.

    Younger blacks vote Republican at higher percentages than older blacks. Younger whites vote Republican at lower percentages than older whites.

    Compared with the 14 percent of 18- to 29-year-old blacks who voted Republican in the midterms, 6.5 percent of blacks who are 45 or older voted Republican.

    Compared with the 43 percent of 18- to 29-year-old whites who voted Republican, 58.5 percent of whites who are 45 or older voted Republican.

    How might we understand this?

    According to the Federal Reserve, as of 2016, median black household income was $35,400, and median black household net worth was $17,600. Contrast that with $61,200 median income and $171,000 median net worth for whites.

    After all these years of government programs to help low-income Americans, African-Americans, on average, are not catching up.

    Perhaps the message is sinking in to young blacks that what they need is more freedom and the kind of growing economy that goes with it.

    They are seeing firsthand the results in the economic recovery that has taken place over the past two years. There were over 650,000 more blacks working last month than there were in October 2017. Compared with the average monthly numbers of 2016, there were over 1.3 million more blacks working.

    According to reports that have been rolling out during this recovery, the boom has created a tight job market, which has created new opportunities for previously unemployable lower-end workers. This has meant new opportunities for young blacks.

    Young white voters—who, on average, come from higher-income homes and have a higher chance of getting help in starting out from their parents—seem to be likelier to buy into the big-government and social justice mindset than their parents and grandparents.

    Republicans should highlight for young blacks the critical importance of capitalism and a free economy for upward mobility. However, they also need to inform them that the same Federal Reserve report showing large gaps in income and wealth between blacks and whites also shows 61 percent of white households as having a married couple or romantic partners, compared with 37 percent of black households.

    The message is that wealth is created through freedom and family.

    Trump won in 2016 by flipping states that were blue to red by very thin margins.

    Florida, for example, with 29 electoral votes, which Trump won by a margin of about 1 percentage point, will be critical in 2020. We see now the elections there for senator and governor at razor-thin margins.

    Republicans should target African-Americans in Florida and other swing states with the message of upward mobility. It could make all the difference in 2020.

    COPYRIGHT 2018 STAR PARKER

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  • Fake News Threatens Our Nation

    Fake News Threatens Our Nation

    President Donald Trump was right to tweet out: “There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent reporting of the news. The Fake News Media, the true enemy of the people, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news honestly and fairly. That will do much to put out the flame…”

    He’s right.

    I open to the opinion section of The Washington Post and find the following headlines:

    “Trump has stoked the fears of the Bowerses (the Pittsburgh synagogue murderer) among us.”

    “Fox News and the rest of the right-wing media can’t escape responsibility.”

    “Trump’s America is not a safe place for Jews.”

    All on one opinion page in one day.

    As I wrote recently, we learned in the confirmation hearing of Judge Brett Kavanaugh that Democrats are no longer pretending to care about facts. An outstanding American was almost destroyed by uncorroborated allegations.

    I was in Jerusalem earlier this year and participated in ceremonies in which the Embassy of the United States was moved to Israel’s capital, Jerusalem.

    A sense of awe, tied to the history of the moment and the bold leadership of Trump, permeated the proceedings. Certainly no one in attendance would question that the Jewish people have no greater friend than this president, who did what no other American president had the courage and conviction to do.

    In June 2015, a year and half before the Trump presidency, a young white supremacist entered a black church in Charleston, South Carolina, and murdered nine black Christians.

    “It is unfathomable that somebody in today’s society could walk into a church while people are having a prayer meeting and take their lives,” said Charleston’s police chief.

    Then-South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley provided extraordinary leadership following the incident, sharing her genuine grief with South Carolinians and all Americans. She took the bold step as a Republican governor to remove the Confederate flag from the grounds of South Carolina’s Capitol.

    Haley understood that the best way to fight evil is by identifying evil for what it is and fighting it not with politics but with virtue.

    For the last two years, Haley has demonstrated similar leadership by principle as Trump’s United Nations ambassador.

    A story on CNN Wire, reported nine days before Election Day, leads with the headline: “‘Voting while black’: How activists are racing to create a midterm ‘black wave.’”

    According to the report, “A growing network of African-American political groups are laboring to build a lasting political clout for African-Americans, especially in the South, where more than half of nation’s black residents live.”

    The article focuses on three black Democrats running for governorships in Georgia, Florida, and Maryland.

    You would think that being black and political meant only electing far-left, progressive Democrats. Totally ignored are exciting and potentially paradigm-changing elections involving black Republicans.

    John James, a black Republican running for the Senate in Michigan against three-term liberal Democrat Debbie Stabenow, doesn’t exist for these CNN writers. James is a conservative Christian, a West Point graduate who flew Apache helicopters in Iraq, and he now runs his family business in Detroit.

    James is real news and hence a non-item for the “fake news” dealers whose interest is peddling progressivism, not truth.

    Differences of opinion are healthy and vital in a free country. National unity and mutual respect are not threatened by differences of opinion but by the destruction of our first principles that guarantee every American equal protection of life, liberty, and property.

    Politics of identity, special interests, or moral relativism rely on feeding the vulnerable fake news rather than truth. Our national health and prosperity are endangered when the truth is lost to politics.

    This is what voters should be thinking about between now and Nov. 6.

    COPYRIGHT 2018 STAR PARKER

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  • Urban Violence Begins in Broken Homes

    Urban Violence Begins in Broken Homes

    The Chicago Tribune reported a big drop in violence in Chicago this past weekend. Forty people were shot.

    This down from the weekend before, when 74 were shot.

    The Tribune’s Steve Chapman rejects what he calls the “popular myth, cynically promoted by Trump and other outside critics” that Chicago is an “exceptionally dangerous city.”

    Yes, 674 people were murdered last year in Chicago, more than in New York City and Los Angeles combined. But that is much better than 1991 when, says Chapman, 920 were murdered, and the 674 killed in 2017 was down 15 percent from 2016.

    Whether or not we call this violence “exceptional,” it is certainly unacceptable. It should concern us all, particularly its racial characteristics.

    As Chapman notes, “Chicago’s crime problem is concentrated in a small number of poor, blighted, mostly African-American neighborhoods.”

    He continues, “Those areas owe their plight largely to a sordid history of systematic, deliberate racial discrimination and violence, endemic poverty, and official neglect over the years.”

    For sure, misguided government policies have contributed to this sad state of affairs. But these policies were supposed to help these communities, not destroy them.

    Policies, such as excessive taxation and government housing, that have fostered indifferent absentee landlords and crime-ridden neighborhoods.

    If there is any “deliberate racial discrimination” that drives violence and crime in black urban areas, it is the racial discrimination of the left. It is the racial discrimination of identity politics, which promote the idea that different ethnicities should live under different rules and receive special treatment.

    Let’s recall that the unfairness that blacks had to deal with in America’s history was unequal treatment under the law. This is what needed to be fixed, and this is what was fixed in the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

    The problem was that liberals wanted to use their agenda not to fix the law but to change the country. And in the name of racial fairness, the era of big activist government, financed with oceans of taxpayer funds, was born.

    But government can’t fix anybody’s life. It can only make sure that the law protecting life, liberty, and property is applied fairly and equally.

    The beginning of big activist government fostered the demise of personal responsibility.

    The perpetrators, and victims, of violence in Chicago and other urban areas are largely young black men. They mostly come from homes with no father and from communities where this reality is the rule rather than the exception.

    Making a child is not hard to do. Raising a child and conveying the values and rules that make for a successful life and responsible adulthood is. Particularly now that popular culture largely dismisses these truths. And in black communities, politics and media are dominated by the left, whose message for them is that life is unfair because of racism and the answer is big government.

    According to recent data from the Pew Research Center, 36 percent of black children under 18, compared to 74 percent of white children under 18, live in a household with married parents.

    And according to Pew, 30 percent of households headed by a single mother, 17 percent of households headed by a single father, 16 percent of households headed by an unmarried couple, and 8 percent of households headed by a married couple are poor.

    Data from the Cook County Department of Health show that, in suburban Cook County and in Cook County under Department of Health jurisdiction, in 2016, 86 percent of babies born to black women between 18-29 were born out of wedlock.

    President Donald Trump is doing his job. We have robust economic growth that we haven’t seen in years, with unemployment rates at record lows.

    Black leaders need to start doing their job and convey that marriage, work, education, and personal responsibility are the only things that will fix black America.

    COPYRIGHT 2018 STAR PARKER

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  • The Media Finds Conservative Leaders Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Media Finds Conservative Leaders Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    First it was Republican Congressman Jim Jordan. Now it’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

    These men are considered guilty by association for being in proximity of wrongdoing that took place almost 30 years ago.

    Allegedly, Jordan took no action as a young assistant wrestling coach regarding sexual misconduct of the team’s doctor. And Kavanaugh was a law clerk for a judge later accused of sexual harassment.

    There will be questions to Kavanaugh during his confirmations hearings, which will relegate these absurd insinuations to the trash where they belong. But Jordan is an influential conservative congressman, and he is being hurt.

    Why is it so easy for the media to inflict damage at what appears to be so little cost to them?

    I’m reminded of the Duke University lacrosse team rape-case fiasco in 2006, where a corrupt prosecutor with an agenda and an all too willing left-wing press and university administration were ready to convict young men—with no facts.

    It was just too beautiful a story for the left: young white athletes raping a black woman that they hired to strip at their team party house.

    Except it didn’t happen. But the team coach was fired; the university suspended the team and cancelled the playing season. The players were tried and convicted in the press, and 88 members of the Duke University faculty signed a letter carried in the university newspaper essentially confirming the guilt of the players and the alleged crime.

    How can we not be thinking about this case with these horrible and unsubstantiated allegations surrounding Jordan, who to all who know him is a man of impeccable character and standards?

    Where’s the reporting on those who knew Jordan from this time and who substantiate his claim that he didn’t know what was going on?

    James Freeman of The Wall Street Journal provides the sought-after responsible journalism on this issue. He reports that midway in Jordan’s coaching career, he recruited his cousin, a high school wrestling star, to Ohio State University. Freeman quotes Jordan’s cousin that the possibility that Jordan would recruit him to a place where he would “be threatened by a sexual predator is so outside the realm of possibility that it’s laughable.”

    Further, as Freeman reports, astonishingly the law firm Ohio State has hired to investigate this, Perkins Coie, is the same firm hired by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to develop the dossier on then-candidate Donald Trump.

    Is it an accident that Jordan, who is going after the FBI like an attack dog and is now contending for House speaker, is somehow now being exposed to this character assassination?

    Sally Quinn, a former columnist and widow of The Washington Post’s Watergate-era editor Ben Bradlee, recently wrote in Politico about her late husband’s commitment to truth in journalism. But today the Post is part of the journalism-by-innuendo cesspool.

    A recent Post column by a staffer of former Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid advises probing what law clerk Brett Kavanaugh might have known about sexual harassment by his then-boss Judge Alex Kozinski 27 years ago, as a strategy to block Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

    We know the left bias of the press. According to the Center for Public Integrity, 96 percent of political contributions in 2016 identified from journalists went to Clinton. According to a 2013 survey, journalists identifying as Democratic outnumber those identifying as Republican 4 to 1. In a survey published in 2016 of 40 top universities, Democrats in journalism departments outnumber Republicans 20 to 1.

    But our problem with the press is less about politics than integrity. The ease with which flimsy insinuation is published as information, insinuation that can cause serious damage to a person of quality, is something that should deeply concern every American. We should not tolerate it.

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  • Pride Month Has Become a Time for LGBT Activists to Pursue Political Enemies

    Pride Month Has Become a Time for LGBT Activists to Pursue Political Enemies

    In 2014, high-tech executive and CEO of Mozilla Brendan Eich was forced to resign from the company he helped found and build, because he made a $1,000 contribution to support traditional marriage in the California marriage referendum.

    According to accounts, Eich was subject to vicious attacks through social media for his contribution in the marriage campaign.

    Mozilla chairwoman, Mitchell Baker, observed, “Mozilla believes in both equality and freedom of speech. Equality is necessary for meaningful speech. And you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard.”

    That Mozilla’s chairwoman could offer such a confused, vacuous explanation for Eich’s dismissal sheds light on why the overall state of affairs in the country is such a mess.

    Free speech is not about equality. Free speech is about the pursuit of truth. The equality necessary for free speech is equality under the law, where everyone receives equal protection. But when politics is the aim rather than truth, objective law protecting free expression gets flushed, and political operatives, like Baker, determine who lives and who dies.

    Two years earlier, Crystal Dixon, a black Christian woman, was fired from her human resources position at the University of Toledo because she penned an op-ed for the local newspaper challenging the proposition that the gay rights movement is a new chapter of the black civil rights movement.

    Carefully reasoned discourse — which is what Dixon offered in her fatal op-ed — is not welcome in a politicized society, because the pursuit of truth is no longer relevant. Only behavior consistent with predetermined political ends is.

    This slippery slope leads in one direction. Less freedom and more oppression. Exactly what our nation is not supposed to be about.

    It shouldn’t surprise us, then, that Gay Pride Month has become a time for LGBTQ storm troopers to pursue political enemies. Not much different from the infamous Kristallnacht in Nazi Germany, when Nazi brown shirts took to the streets to smash windows of shops owned by Jews.

    Thus among the stories of this Gay Pride Month:

    Another high-tech executive, the CEO of Twitter, with an estimated net worth of $5 billion, was forced to offer a social media apology for eating a chicken sandwich in Chick-fil-A. Patronizing a fast-food establishment whose CEO is a devout Christian, with the temerity to have criticized the Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage, is a high crime in the eyes of the LGBTQ judges and jury.

    Russell Berger, chief knowledge officer of CrossFit, was fired for tweeting his support of a company decision to cancel participation of a CrossFit gym in Indianapolis in Gay Pride Month events. Berger, a seminary trained pastor, was perhaps excessively inflammatory because he used the word “sin.” If there is any “sin” in today’s politicized America, it is to claim that sin, in the biblical sense, exists.

    A Muslim Uber driver was fired for asking two lesbian passengers to leave his car after they began kissing and embracing.

    Last year, my office in Washington had to temporarily close because of threats when, in a cable TV interview, I equated the LGBTQ rainbow flag to the confederate flag. From my point a view, it’s a totally reasonable assertion. As a black American, the Confederate flag communicates to me that I am not welcome. As a Christian American, the rainbow flag communicates to me that I am not welcome.

    According to a recent Gallup survey, 41 percent of Americans identify as evangelical Christians. Will the course of events in LGBTQ-controlled America preclude them from shopping, working, speaking, existing in our nation’s public spaces?

    The preamble of our constitution says that “We the people” establish this constitution in order to “secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.”

    The direction of events indicates that “our posterity” has much to be concerned about.

    COPYRIGHT 2018 STAR PARKER

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  • The Grim Consequences of Not Reforming Social Security

    The Grim Consequences of Not Reforming Social Security

    Each year, the trustees of Social Security and Medicare issue their report delivering the news, invariably dismal, about the financial condition of the nation’s two largest entitlement programs.

    This year, in the report just issued, it’s worse than usual.

    Last year, the trustees forecast that Social Security and Medicare’s hospital insurance would have to start dipping into their trust funds by 2022 and 2023 in order to finance their obligations. They report now that the situation has deteriorated such that both need to start dipping in this year.

    The hospital insurance trust fund will be depleted by 2026, and Social Security’s trust fund will be depleted by 2034.

    In the case of Social Security, in 2034, just 16 years away, if no action is taken now, either benefits must be cut by 21 percent or taxes will need to be raised 31 percent, to meet obligations.

    Analysts have been writing about the grave fiscal problems of Social Security for years. Yet nothing gets done. Why?

    Social Security is the largest spending program in the U.S. budget. Ninety percent of Americans 65 and older get Social Security benefits.

    Any government program, once it gets rooted in our culture and Americans start getting benefits, becomes almost impossible to change. President George W. Bush tried to bring fundamental changes to Social Security. He was a Republican president whose party controlled both the Senate and the House. And he still couldn’t get to first base.

    Social Security was signed into law in 1935—83 years ago. Although the scope of the program is much, much bigger today, its basic structure is exactly the same as it was then. Benefits of retirees are paid for through the payroll taxes of those currently working.

    How many businesses today operate exactly like they did 83 years ago—or even 10 years ago? The Dow Jones average, an index of the nation’s most influential corporations, has changed 51 times since it was founded.

    The reason our economy works is because it is flexible. The world is changing all the time. Businesses are constantly altering their products and the way they do business to accommodate new market realities.

    But not so in government programs. And there couldn’t be a better reason why we should keep government out of our private lives.

    The basic premise of Social Security, and of Medicare, enacted some 33 years after Social Security, was that we could tax the young and working to pay for the retired and elderly.

    But in 1950, we had a little over 16 people working for every retiree. Today it is less than three.

    Life expectancy in 1940 for a 65 year old was 14 years. Today it is 20 years.

    Meanwhile, we’re not having children. Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the U.S. fertility, the number of babies birthed for every 1,000 women of childbearing age, was the lowest in history in 2017.

    Most Americans think they are entitled to defined Social Security benefits because they paid taxes. It’s not true. In a Supreme Court case in 1960, Flemming v. Nestor, the court ruled, “A person covered by the Social Security Act has not such a right in old-age benefit payments. … To engraft upon the Social Security system a concept of ‘accrued property rights’ would deprive it of the flexibility and boldness in adjustments to ever-changing conditions.”

    This means the government can change your benefits anytime it wants. Who would do business with a company like this?

    It’s great that President Donald Trump has got our economy steaming ahead again. But as we recover, we need to take on the challenges of Social Security and Medicare.

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  • A First Step for Prison Reform

    A First Step for Prison Reform

    Recently, I attended the White House Prison Reform Summit.

    The fact that both the president and the vice president were at the event indicates the importance that the Trump administration ascribes to this issue.

    And statistics quoted by Vice President Mike Pence explain why our existing prison system should trouble us all.

    According to the vice president, “Every year, while 650,000 people leave America’s prisons, within three years two-thirds of them are arrested again. More than half will be convicted; 40 percent will find themselves back where they started, behind bars. It’s a cycle of criminality. It’s a cycle of failure.”

    The encouraging news is that we’re seeing a level of bipartisan cooperation on this issue that is rare in Washington these days.

    The House Judiciary Committee has just passed a prison reform bill called the First Step Act that is co-sponsored by Republican Doug Collins, R-Ga., and Congressional Black Caucus Democrat Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y.

    The bill was voted out of committee by a vote of 25-5, with 15 Republicans and 10 Democrats voting for it.

    Moderating one of the panels at the White House summit was a former Obama White House adviser, Van Jones, who has come out in support of the First Step Act.

    On his Facebook page, Jones called the legislation “A big win for men and women in federal prison.”

    The point person in the White House on this issue is presidential adviser Jared Kushner, who deserves much of the credit for raising the profile of the importance of prison reform and for recruiting the broad base of support.

    The First Step Act establishes new tools for prison management to conduct ongoing risk assessments of each prisoner, evaluating the likelihood of the prisoner recommitting a crime. The profiling also establishes a basis for programs and job training to assist in rehabilitation of these individuals.

    Prisoners productively participating in these programs, and showing progress in behavior and attitudes, are rewarded with increased phone time, visits, and transfers to facilities closer to their homes and families.

    Those achieving a low-risk profile of recidivism may be eligible for at-home confinement or for being transferred to halfway houses for the final period of their sentences.

    A group of 121 former federal law enforcement officials have signed a letter urging the passage of the First Step Act.

    The list of signatories includes one former U.S. attorney general and five former U.S. deputy attorneys general. And, in the aforementioned spirit of bipartisanship, the list includes Bush administration Attorney General Michael Mukasey and Mary Jo White, appointed by Barack Obama as chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the first and only woman to be U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York.

    Despite the impressive core support for this bill, there is opposition on the left and the right.

    Several high-profile Black Caucus Democrats, including Sens. Kamala Harris and Cory Booker and Reps. John Lewis and Sheila Jackson Lee, signed a letter in opposition. Also the NAACP opposes the bill.

    Complaints include that the risk assessment system is “untested” and that the bill only focuses on prison reform and not sentencing reform.

    But the assessment system is not “untested.” A good number of states have enacted similar measures with great success. Texas passed similar reforms in 2007, resulting in $3 billion in savings and producing the lowest crime rate in the state in almost 50 years.

    There is broad consensus that sentencing reform is also needed. But reform dealing with recidivism is not dependent on this. So why make the politics much more complicated and the probability of passage much lower?

    Thoughtful reform to deal with recidivism is both humane and economically sensible. President Donald Trump said he’ll sign it if Congress passes it. It should.

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  • Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Shows the US Is Unique. Just Like Israel.

    Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Shows the US Is Unique. Just Like Israel.

    I was privileged to attend the dedication of the new American Embassy in Jerusalem on May 14—an event of enormous import that will remain with me forever.

    I am deeply grateful to Ambassador David Friedman and his wife, Tammy, for inviting me to this historic event. The United States recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is important not just for the United States and Israel but also for the entire world.

    We might start thinking about this by considering the unique relationship between these two countries.

    Regardless of how some choose to think about the United States today, the country’s founding generation was largely Christian men and women.

    Alexis de Tocqueville, author of “Democracy in America,” widely deemed to be the most insightful book ever written about the United States, wrote in 1835, “There is no country in the world where the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of men than in America.”

    Perhaps there is no better example demonstrating this truth, and the deep roots of Christian Americans in the Hebrew Bible, than the inscription on the Liberty Bell from the Book of Leviticus: “Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all inhabitants thereof.”

    The United States and Israel are different from other nations in that both are defined by a creed and by principles. I would go so far to say that the extraordinary success of both countries springs from these principles.

    What are the great principles that can be extracted from the Ten Commandments in the Hebrew Bible?

    Reverence for the Lord, reverence for family, reverence for the sanctity of life, reverence for private property and personal responsibility, and a prohibition of envy.

    Some surely will say that the United States has strayed so far from these principles that they no longer define the country. But I travel constantly. I have been in every state of the union. And I have met enough of the many millions of Americans that still subscribe to these truths to know they are still very much alive in America.

    And I also believe that the problems that plagued America in the past, and that plague America today, trace to abandonment of these great truths—these great truths rooted in the Hebrew Bible.

    I see President Donald Trump’s courageous step forward to lead the United States to be the first nation in the world to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Israel, and to move the United States Embassy to Jerusalem, as implicit recognition that the common ground on which both nations stand is our shared belief in these great and holy truths.

    The achievements of the young state of Israel, which celebrates its 70th birthday this year, have been truly awesome.

    Writer, social philosopher, and investor George Gilder wrote a book called “The Israel Test.” What is the Israel Test according to Gilder?

    He asks the question: How do you react to those who excel you in innovation, in creativity, in wealth? Do you envy them and feel diminished by them? Or do you admire what they have achieved and try to emulate them?

    Those who say the latter pass the Israel Test. According to Gilder, it is the Israel Test that drives today’s tensions in the Middle East. I would take it a step further and say that it is the Israel Test that drives the tensions in America.

    Gilder says that those who pass the Israel Test tend to become wealthy and peaceful. Those who fail it tend to become poor and violent.

    The great principles that join America and Israel are equally true and crucial for all of mankind.

    Congratulations to Trump for helping America pass the Israel Test. Now we wait for the other nations of the world.

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