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Monday, November 27, 2017

The Truth behind the Deaths of “Transgenders”

In case you missed it—which, sadly, no less than the U.S. Secretary of State made difficult—November 20 was “International Transgender Day of Remembrance.” The day focuses on memorializing the world’s gender-deluded who were victims of violence. By my estimate—I didn’t count them all—the list contains about 300 people.

Likewise, many liberal outlets in the American mainstream media—redundant, I know—took the opportunity to paint violence against the gender-deluded as some sort of epidemic. The headline in the largest newspaper in my state declared, “Violence against transgender people at all-time high in Georgia, nationally.”

Evidently an annual “all-time high” when it comes to the murder of individuals in the U.S. who choose to live a gender lie is 25. After the 11th death, which occurred in May of this year, one news outlet quoted a “transgender” activist declaring, “We are facing a national epidemic of violence [against ‘transgenders’].” More American Christians were recently killed in a single day as they peacefully gathered to worship their Creator. Following this horrific event, virtually no one in the mainstream American media wanted to talk about how Christians in the U.S. are suffering an “epidemic” of violence or even that we are merely increasingly under attack.

To further the perverse LGBT agenda, the liberal American media would rather promote a lie than reveal the plight of Americans who seek the Truth. Of course, an agenda built on lies must be furthered with lies. Murder is always tragic, and leave it to liberals to use the death of murdered Americans deceptively in order to advance their preferred—and again false—narrative. What’s more, worldwide, tens of thousands of Christians are martyred every year and the liberal-led media typically—and predictably—yawns.

Throughout the stories highlighting “International Transgender Day of Remembrance” was the implication that “transgenders” are being killed as the result of hate toward those who foolishly choose to live as the opposite sex. This was certainly the case with the American media and the 25 “transgenders” killed in the United States.

Of course, an additional implication is that this hate is the result of “ignorant” and “irrational” bias against the gender-deluded from conservatives and Christians. As is often the case with liberal narratives, few things could be further from the truth.

I examined online reports of each of the 25 American individuals on the Human Rights Campaign’s “Violence Against the Transgender Community” list for 2017. I looked specifically for mainstream media accounts—such as the Chicago Tribune, The Times Picayune (more than once), The Baltimore Sun, the Miami Herald, and so on. In other words, I looked for news publications that had almost every reason in the world to stick to the LGBT agenda on “transgender” deaths. Though the articles often hopefully hinted that a possible “hate criminal” was behind the murders, there was not one single person the media could definitively claim was the victim of a “hate crime.”

Quite the contrary, more than one “transgender” person died as the result of violently attacking the police. Others were involved in dangerous activities such as prostitution, gang activity, or drug use, and still others had shown themselves to be prone to violence. In other words, much—if not most—of the “violence against transgenders” is due to the poor lifestyle choices of those who reject simple science and morality.

If the mainstream media really wanted to tell the truth when it comes to death and the gender-deluded, it would do well to note the dangers of denying basic biology and the tragic results that often accompany attempting the impossible—“transitioning” from one sex to another. Instead, the media again embraces a lie and is guilty of malpractice.

Along with the dangerous and sometimes deadly consequences of mutilating an otherwise healthy body with unnecessary drugs and surgeries, those who suffer from gender delusions face a whole host of health issues that a media that truly cared should be eager to report. For example, the risk of cancer significantly increases when one’s body is subjected to gender “reorientation” drugs.

The suicide rate among the gender-deluded is far above that of the general population. A staggering number of youth who struggle with their gender engage in self harm. Worse still, many parents who’ve bought the liberal lie on gender are guilty of child abuse. Because their parents, their schools, their churches, and their media refused to tell them the truth about their gender, many older teens and young adults have found themselves scarred for life.

Death, disease, and despair do stalk the gender-deluded community, but not for the reasons most corrupted by liberalism would have us believe. Again, those struggling with their gender identity need serious physical, mental, and spiritual help. They do not need accommodation in living a lie.

(See this column at American Thinker and LifeSiteNews.)

Copyright 2017, Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
www.trevorgrantthomas.com
Trevor is the author of the The Miracle and Magnificence of America
tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com

Thursday, November 23, 2017

A History of Thanksgiving (Taken from The Miracle and Magnificence of America)

Sir Walter Raleigh’s first attempts at settling the New World were disastrous. The English, who were now trying to gain a foothold in the New World, were succumbing to the same greed that had earlier blinded the Spaniards. Starvation, disease, hostile Indians, and other hardships, including a whole colony lost (the Lost Colony of Roanoke), led to dampened enthusiasm for New World expeditions.

It would be nearly 20 years after Raleigh’s initial ventures before enough English interest could again be sparked for more New World adventure. Despite recruiting “sermons” that contained messages of evangelical outreach, and the preamble of the Company’s charter, written by King James I, which contained the words, “…propagating of Christian religion to such people as yet live in darkness and miserable ignorance of the true knowledge and worship of God, and may in time bring the infidels and savages, living in these parts, to human civility and to a settled and quiet government,” the lust for gold was, again, what drove European men across the Atlantic.

On May 14, 1607, headed by a seven-man council, which included John Smith, 144 men settled Jamestown. Because of their misguided efforts it was a disaster from the beginning. These men battled the elements, disease, Indians, starvation, and one another. The lone minister on the adventure, Robert Hunt, did his best to keep the others focused on God. His sermons went mostly unheeded; however, he persevered. By February of 1608 only 38 of the 144 remained alive.

The death rate did not abate with time. As Peter Marshall and David Manuel note,
For example, of the 1,200 people who went out to Virginia in 1619, only 200 were left alive by 1620. Why this horrible continuing death rate? There is no logical explanation, except one: year after year they steadfastly refused to trust God—or indeed to include Him in any of their deliberations.
The next settlers to cross the Atlantic would not make the same mistakes. They were not seeking wealth and prosperity, but a new home. They believed that America was their spiritual destiny. The Pilgrims (dubbed “Separatists” by the Church of England), and the Puritans who followed them, knew better than to undertake anything without God.

Aboard the Mayflower were 102 passengers, less than half of whom were of Pastor John Robinson’s Separatist flock. After a grueling two-month voyage, on November 11, 1620, they dropped anchor in Cape Cod, and heeding the advice and wisdom of their pastor, the Pilgrims drafted a compact that would embody the same principles of government upon which American democracy would rest. It read,
In the name of God, amen. We whose names are under-written…Having undertaken, for the glory of God and advancement of the Christian Faith and honor of our King and country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents solemnly and mutually in the presence of God and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic…constitute and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions and offices from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony…the 11th of November…Anno Domini 1620.
John Carver, who had chartered the Mayflower, was chosen as the first governor of the colony. His was the first signature on the Mayflower Compact, which is considered by many to be the world’s first written constitution. William Bradford would soon replace Carver as governor and would serve in that capacity for 31 years. On December 21, 1620, the Pilgrims settled at what would become known as Plymouth.

A replica model of the Mayflower. Created by Norbert Schnitzler.

Though their efforts were “for the glory of God,” the Pilgrims were not immune to the many hardships of an untamed America. Before long, many started dying. William Bradford’s wife Dorothy was among the casualties as she fell overboard and drowned. (Initially, while dwellings were being built, the Pilgrims lived mostly aboard the Mayflower.) Due in part to a brutal winter, dozens would die in those first few months, including 13 of 18 wives. In spite of hardships, the Pilgrims were undeterred and drew ever closer to God.

The months turned into years and saw the Pilgrims develop good relations with the local natives including Massasoit, a wise and welcoming chief of the local tribes, Samoset, and especially Tisquantum, or Squanto.

In the middle of March 1621, just as the Pilgrims were coming out of the devastatingly harsh winter, a guard alerted his comrades with the cry of “Indian coming!” Wearing only a loincloth as he walked into the Pilgrims’ camp, Samoset astonished the English onlookers with a hearty “Welcome!” Then speaking surprisingly clear English, he followed his friendly greeting with a request, “Have you got any beer?”

The Pilgrims informed their friendly guest that they were out of beer, and offered him brandy instead. After a hearty snack of brandy, biscuit, butter, cheese, pudding, and roast duck, Samoset was ready to answer questions. In spite of their difficult and deadly plight, Samoset’s words gave the Pilgrims great cause to thank God.

On March 22, 1621, Samoset returned to the Pilgrims with Squanto, who spoke even better English. Squanto’s life is an amazing tale of God’s provision that very closely resembles the account of Joseph from Genesis, chapter 37. Soon after Samoset introduced Squanto to the Pilgrims, a meeting with Massasoit, chief of the Wampanoag people, was arranged. Massasoit, Samoset, Squanto, and dozens of Wampanoag warriors traveled to Plymouth to meet the Pilgrims. With Samoset serving as the interpreter for Massasoit, the meeting was extremely fruitful. A peace treaty and a treaty of mutual aid were struck with Massasoit that would last for decades.

Massasoit and his party returned home, but Squanto remained with the Pilgrims. Being a man without a tribe, personally witnessing the desperation of the Pilgrims, and already having adopted their faith, Squanto took pity upon his new-found English friends and wanted to help them succeed in their New World. He taught them how to fish for eels and alewives, plant corn and pumpkins, refine maple syrup, trap beavers, hunt deer, and other skills essential to their survival.

Squanto was instrumental in the survival of the Pilgrims—so much so that, according to William Bradford, the Pilgrims considered Squanto “a special instrument sent of God for their good, beyond their expectation.” Massasoit also was an amazing example of God’s providential care for the Pilgrims. Like Powhatan had been at Jamestown, Massasoit was probably the only other native chief on the northeast coast of America who would have welcomed the white man as a friend.

In early April of 1621, with supplies running dangerously low, the Captain of the Mayflower, Christopher Jones, decided he could remain in America no longer. On April 5, 1621, the Mayflower returned to England. As the ship disappeared over the horizon, almost certainly a nervous uneasiness came upon more than a few Pilgrims who remained in the New World. Their last ties to their former home were gone. They, perhaps, felt more alone than at any point of their amazing journey.

The summer of 1621 was beautiful and, thanks in no small measure to the help of Squanto, bountiful. Governor Bradford declared a day of public Thanksgiving to be held in October. Massasoit was invited. Surprising the Pilgrims, he showed up a day early with 90 of his tribe. To feed such a crowd, the Pilgrims would have to go deep into their food supply. However, Massasoit did not show up empty handed. He had instructed his braves to hunt for the occasion, and they came with several dressed dear and fat turkeys. The Thanksgiving turned into a three-day celebration filled with feasting and games.

The First Thanksgiving, by Jean-Léon Gérôme.

A few weeks after the first Thanksgiving and about a year after the Pilgrims arrived in the New World, the Fortune sailed into Plymouth on its way to Virginia. The main cargo was an additional 35 colonists and a charter granted from the New England Company. There was tremendous celebration over the new charter; however, unlike the Indians, the new colonists arrived virtually empty handed. They had no extra clothing, food, or tools. The Pilgrims would have to adjust their winter food rationing plan severely.

The winter of 1621-1622 was as difficult as feared. The Pilgrims entered what has been described as their “starving time.” Some reports reveal that at times, food rations for each person were a mere five kernels of corn per day. Miraculously, that winter not one Pilgrim died of starvation.

There was no Thanksgiving celebration in 1622. When the spring planting season of 1623 rolled around, the Pilgrims realized that to fend off further hunger and rationing, a corn harvest at least twice as large as last season was necessary. However, a lackluster work ethic prevailed among them. This was mainly because the contract entered into with their merchant sponsors in London required everything the Pilgrims produced was to go into a common store and be shared. As Rush Limbaugh has often pointed out on his radio broadcast that celebrates Thanksgiving Day, the Pilgrims were languishing under socialism.

The leaders of the colony then decreed that for the additional planting, individual plots of land would be split, and the yield could be used at the planters’ discretion. Thus, as the concept of private property was introduced, the Pilgrims seemed infused and invigorated with new hope and purpose. As Marshall and Manuel point out, “The yield that year was so abundant that the Pilgrims ended up with a surplus of corn, which they were able to use in trading that winter with northern Indians, who had not had a good growing season.”

On November 29, 1623, two years after the first Thanksgiving, Governor William Bradford made an official proclamation for a second day of Thanksgiving. In it Governor Bradford thanked God for their abundant harvest, bountiful game, protection from “the ravages of savages…and disease,” and for the “freedom to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience.” Well over a hundred Natives attended, bringing plenty of turkey and venison along with them.

The Pilgrims, and the Puritans who followed them, had the proper perspective. As Bradford would so discernibly note, “As one small candle may light a thousand, so the light kindled here has shown unto many, yea in some sort to our whole nation…We have noted these things so that you might see their worth and not negligently lose what your fathers have obtained with so much hardship.”

May the light of those first Thanksgivings never be extinguished.

Copyright 2017, Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
www.trevorgrantthomas.com
Trevor is the author of The Miracle and Magnificence of America
tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Colin Kaepernick Needs the Truth

On the same day that GQ—sometimes known as Genuflecting Quarterbacks—named Colin Kaepernick as its “Citizen of the Year,” several mainstream media outlets—including Christian websites—reported that some Christian players in the NFL who support Kaepernick’s protest of “systemic oppression and…police brutality toward black people” are frustrated at the criticism directed at Mr. Kaepernick. They are especially frustrated that the out-of-work quarterback isn’t getting more support from the Christian community within the NFL.

As ABC News reported,
Eric Reid and other Christian players who support Colin Kaepernick's social justice movement want believers on the opposite side of the controversial anthem protest to ask themselves a simple but powerful question: What would Jesus do?
Reid—then a teammate of Kaepernick—was quick to join the back-up quarterback last year in taking a knee during the National Anthem. Reid would later tell the AP that his faith was instrumental in his decision to kneel. Referencing Proverbs, Reid declared that he wanted to be a “voice for the voiceless.” He added,
We all have a love for people. The Bible tells us love your brother as yourself so that's why we're doing it. We have to speak up for those who can’t do it for themselves. My faith is ultimately what led me to start protesting and it's what continues to drive me. Faith without works is dead. I feel like the past year before we started protesting, the Lord has prepped me for this moment.
Reid—one of three NFL players who took a knee during the NFL’s Veteran’s Day celebration—expressed particular frustration with his Christian colleagues,
I do see some hypocrisy with the people that call themselves Christians. If you know Jesus, he went into the house of God and turned over the tables and was angry and said they made the house of God into a marketplace so I would say this is something that He would do.
Baltimore Ravens tight end, Ben Watson—a long-time outspoken Christian in the NFL—was also critical of Christians who put “politics above the gospel, empathy and understanding.” He added,
We talk about what Jesus would do. Let's think about that. How should I Biblically look at this situation? Is my response as an American going against what my response should be as a Christian?...Being kind is not predicated on what you can do for me. Justice is not predicated on if I experienced injustice or not. We can advocate for people who have experiences that we don't even have. True justice is blind and righteous. Christians should be about expanding and promoting the gospel. If you listen or think about the subject matter that players and people are concerned about, you could not as someone who reads scripture turn a blind eye to it.
Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins, who often raises his fist during the anthem, wants the Christian community to be more united.
As big as we are, as much influence as we have on policy and politics, if the Church ever got behind really being for equality and really being for justice, it would show up, it would come. But a lot of times we don't show the empathy, we don't take the time to listen and we're just as segregated as the world is right now.
I’m not sure about the “Christian cred” of these other professionals, but I’ve long admired and respected the words and deeds of Ben Watson. As I’ve noted before, more than once Mr. Watson has boldly and articulately stood for the truth on some of the most important moral issues of our time—namely marriage and abortion. However, I think he needs to reexamine his approach to Colin Kaepernick and his protest and get his coworkers to do the same.

For example, when it comes to “What Would Jesus Do?” in this situation, of course, I can’t say for sure how Jesus would deal with a modern-day millionaire “social justice warrior,” but from what Scripture reveals, I imagine He would begin and end with what He always did: the truth.

As He did with the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus might start by asking Mr. Kaepernick about his spouse. The woman of Samaria told Jesus, “I have no husband.” Likewise, Mr. Kaepernick would have to reply that he has no wife. Yet, as was the case with the Samaritan woman, Mr. Kaepernick is steeped in an immoral (sinful) relationship.

It is well known that for several years now Kaepernick has been “dating” (often known as “living in sin” with) Nessa Diab. Ms. Diab is a “radio and TV personality.” Specifically, she is an MTV host. That alone should send shutters down the spine of any spiritually “woke” individual. As if we needed direct clarification, Diab has openly spoken of her sexual exploits with Kaepernick.

What’s more, while Kaepernick claims to be a Christian, Diab is a Muslim and a raging liberal. (While this seems very contradictory, Islam and liberalism do have much in common.) Before trying to understand his kneeling protests, maybe Mr. Watson should speak to Colin about being “unequally yoked” and the sin of fornication.

What if Diab gets pregnant? Will they kill yet another black baby? Will they bring yet another American child into the world who doesn’t have a married mother and father? In other words, instead of being part of any a solution to what really plagues the American black community, Mr. Kaepernick is part of the problem and is very likely about to make things even worse.

What if, while standing among the crowds of urban youth—where he so often finds himself—instead of talking about the myth of “systemic oppression and police brutality,” Mr. Kaepernick would speak of the importance of marriage, family, and sexual morality? And more importantly, what if he lived those truths himself?

Again, Kaepernick kneels for a lie and is living his life according to multiple lies. Instead of trying to “understand” a lie, Mr. Kaepernick’s Christian friends should tell him the truth.

(See this column at American Thinker.)

Copyright 2017, Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
www.trevorgrantthomas.com
Trevor is the author of the The Miracle and Magnificence of America
tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com

Saturday, November 11, 2017

It’s the Worldview, Stupid

If we want to defeat or change those who are wickedly determined to take the lives of other human beings unjustly, it should go without saying that we must look far beyond the killers’ chosen instrument of death. This is why the pro-life community doesn’t put any effort into attempting to ban suction curettes or forceps—which have killed far more people in the U.S. than have guns.

Nevertheless—and seemingly inevitably—whenever a mass murderer goes on a killing spree in the U.S., those who are terrified of the notion of absolute truth (who are determined to rule their own world)—and especially terrified of the Author of truth—ignore the real problems with homicidal deviants and almost always ignorantly insist that the solution is legislation that restricts access to weapons.

This is the case even if the weapon is a truck. Again, Satan laughs. Tragically, with those corrupted by liberalism, we see this time and again. Whether the problem is poverty, hunger, bad schools, gun violence, crime in general, or even the spread of disease, the liberal answer is always the same: more government. Because most of them have made a god of government, liberals are almost always looking for a political solution to whatever ails us.

Thus, virtually everything in our culture is politicized, and the public at large is subjected to never-ending campaigns. For liberals, nearly any solution to our cultural tribulations that will drive people to vote for democrats is most preferable. Sadly, far too many people are willing to cast their votes for those who promise to “protect” them—from the climate, from corporations, criminals, Christians, disease, pregnancy, and especially from the consequences of their own bad decisions. “Pajama Boy” and “Julia” are the poster children here.

In other words—whether through legislation, executive orders, or rulings from the bench—to cure societies’ ills, liberals insist that we heed the words of “enlightened” man instead of the Word of the eternal God. This is why, after a mass shooting with multiple deaths, the idea of prayer is so offensive to liberals. Even the benign “moment of silence” or “thoughts and prayers” (you can keep your thoughts, but I’ll take your prayers!) are now so often derided, mocked, and ignored.

However, in spite of liberal trepidations, prayer brings us to the heart of the matter when dealing with the likes of Sayfullo Saipov, Devin Kelley, Omar Mateen, Dylan Roof, and so on. As C.S. Lewis taught us, prayer reveals our “bankruptcy,” or, put another way, our powerlessness. Prayer helps us understand who we really are and who God really is. (Note how the Lord’s Prayer begins: “Our Father in heaven, holy is your name…”) And when necessary, prayer leads us up to the vital moment at which we “turn to God and say, ‘You must do this. I can’t.’”

Only the power of God can change the heart of a human. Good government should always remind us of and be rooted in the truth, but we will never be able to legislate away evil. Men like Sayfullo Saipov and Devin Kelley did what they did because they ignored God and decided truth for themselves.

Such a self-centered attitude is at the heart of liberalism. This is another reason why liberals want to focus on guns instead of what motivates men to do evil. The perverse worldview of angry atheists and murderous Islamists shares much in common with the godless worldview of modern liberalism. Again, the most common shared element is a rabid disdain for all things Christian.

Meanwhile, the search for the ever-elusive gun- and religion-clinging “Christian terrorist” continues.

Copyright 2017, Trevor Grant Thomas
www.trevorgrantthomas.com
Trevor is a mathematics teacher and the author of the The Miracle and Magnificence of America.
tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com