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Demings’ Hit Piece Shows How Backward on Guns (and More) She Is

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By David Cordea
Oathkeepers
June 13, 2017

Val Demings and the Brady Campaign establish their solidarity with the #Resist crowd, that is with those who oppose the predominant principles and values of Americans living in the “red” states and counties of “Flyover Country.”

“A year after Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting, we’re going backward on guns,” a USA Today editorial by Democrat Rep. Val Demings asserts. “How many more times do we have to see the words ‘mass’ and ‘shooting’ next to each other before we take action? How young do the victims have to be before we take action?”

What “action” does Demings have in mind? She’s not ready to show all her cards, because if too many people get wind of the end game, they’re not likely to believe the “No one wants to take your guns” lie.

Of course they do (as the gun-grabbers used to admit before figuring out they’d get more mileage pretending they were all about “gun safety”), and so does Demings. But she’s counting on most of her readers not to have plumbed the depths too deeply to realize that when she’s talking about veteran and Social Security recipient disarmament, she’s really talking about undermining the fundamental principle of due process. And when she opposes proposed bills to relax restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms, nationwide concealed carry reciprocity and an end to federal restrictions on hearing-protective suppressors, she’s arguing for prior restraints on that which, per the mandate of the Second Amendment, “shall not be infringed.” .

“I served in law-enforcement for 27 years, four years of that as the Chief of Police for the Orlando Police Department,” Demings says, as if that establishes her bona fides as the arbiter of rights. “Before being elected to Congress I spent most of my adult life wearing a uniform, a badge and carrying a gun. I took an oath to protect the innocent from dangerous people.”

No Rep. Demings, in fact you did not. This is what you took an oath to do, as a cop and as an elected official:

“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution…”

So she’s an oath-breaker?

With so little regard for the aforementioned rights, and noting that for self-styled “progressives,” every day is Opposite Day, is it any wonder Demings is so thin-skinned she threatened using the force of the state to abridge the First Amendment and silence her political opposition?

“Orlando police Chief Val Demings is threatening to sue one of her critics for creating a Web site that criticizes her performance. Valdemings.com is run by Ezell “Easy” Harris, a frequent critic of Demings’, and contains a disclaimer stating the chief has no association with the site. Demings’ attorney, Griffith J. Winthrop III, accuses Harris in an April 17 letter of ‘maligning’ and defaming the chief. The letter also says Harris violated the law by using her ‘persona’ and identity and claims Harris’ behavior is ‘malicious.’ Demings is demanding that the Web site be taken down and threatens to sue Harris if he refuses.”

And as for that gun Demings mentioned carrying, implying she is qualified to be one of the “Only Ones,” while the rest of us are not? Per that website she sicced her mouthpiece on:

“Orlando police Chief Demings given ‘written censure’ for stolen gun …  Demings will have a notice in her personnel file that will remain there for three years as a result of her not properly securing her weapon and ammunition when it was stolen from her car, an internal investigation shows.  Demings’ 9mm Sig Sauer, three loaded magazines, handcuffs and a baton were stolen from her agency-issued vehicle on the evening of Feb. 27. The police reports shows the items were removed from the duffel bag she had placed on the floor and in front of the passenger seat …  The department’s policy states, ‘Employees have an enhanced duty and responsibility to safeguard and maintain control and custody of department owned and issued equipment that is inherently dangerous (firearms).’”

Demings’ negligence contributed to putting another “gun on the street” and she presumes to be a competent authority qualified to lecture the rest of us on gun safety? Did the cost of the replacement gun and gear at least come out of her paycheck, or was the temporary personnel file wrist slap enough?

By the way, spend some time going through that archive and note other instances of mismanagement and corruption, from a female supervisor reportedly getting away with sexual harassment, to a screw-up in an internal affairs investigation of an officer who caused a woman to fall down a flight of stairs, and plenty more. No wonder Demings has since taken over the domain and turned it into a “Rah-Rah Me” site.

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Impeachment Is No Longer Enough; Donald Trump Must Face Justice

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This article was posted on the HUFFPOST days prior to the Bernie Sanders supporter Sothern Poverty Law Center liking want to be assassin John T Hodgkinson attempted to massacre unarmed federal congressional members with a rifle legally registered in Illinois. It not for the Grace of God and the actions of two Capitol Police the body count by this representative of the radical Leftist Democratic Party would have been much higher. The reader can connect the dots between the this coward’s action and the action called for in this hateful radical Leftist’s piece.

By Jason Fuller
HuffPost
June 11, 2017

Impeachment and removal from office are only the first steps; for America to be redeemed, Donald Trump must be prosecuted for treason and — if convicted in a court of law — executed.

Donald Trump has been President of the United States for just shy of six months now. I think that most of us among the electorate knew that his presidency would be a relative disaster, but I am not sure how many among us expected the catastrophe our nation now faces.
The sad thing is that I don’t even have to run through a laundry list of his wrongdoings and cite a litany of sources. Any quick Internet search or flip of the TV to a credible news source will run down the most recent scandal before the next commercial break. In just these short few months, Donald Trump has managed to gut environmental protections; sign two executive orders attempting to implement a travel ban on Muslim-majority countries; fire the former head of the FBI specifically for investigating the Trump campaign ties to Russia; isolate the United States from much of the rest of the world; and submit a budget which would eviscerate social programs designed to help the worst off among us. And these are just the things I can think of off the top of my head, without even conducting a search.
There is very little doubt left that Trump and his team colluded with members of the Russian government to try and rig the election in his favor, even if the Russians did not outright hack the voting process itself; while we may not yet have 100% incontrovertible proof of their collusion, the administration’s attempts to hide previous contacts with the Russians, their willingness to blatantly lie about their communications, and the contents of Trump’s meetings with former FBI director Comey are all incriminating on their own. And Trump’s decision to fire Comey specifically to hamper that investigation is obstruction of justice, no matter what spin he or anyone else puts upon it.
And the interference of the Russian government to circumvent our democratic procedures for electing the President of the United States is an act of war. There is no other way to characterize it; this was an all-out attack by the government of Russia on our democratic process, the very foundation of our country. This elevates Trump’s simple obstruction of justice to high treason under the Constitution.
We can also argue that Trump’s continued insistence on a travel ban — he’s not even disguising his intent anymore, based on his recent tweets — serves the purpose of assisting ISIS, which is arguably the nation’s biggest enemy right now. Trump’s campaign rhetoric and subsequent travel ban orders against the Muslim population serve as avaluable recruitment tool for the Islamic State by giving them credibility. ISIS’ whole narrative is that Western powers seek to destroy Islam; Trump’s willingness to wage what amounts to a constitutional jihad against all of Islam makes their entire case for them:

It can play into their propaganda, to make it clear for anyone who could be in doubt, that it’s a war on Islam and all Muslims,” Abdullah told CNN over a messaging service. The names of the now-defected foreign fighters in this story have been changed to protect their identities.

Another former jihadi said the wedge being driven between Muslims living in the West and their governments is exactly what ISIS wants.

“[Trump’s] helped ISIS a lot, he’s basically being a tool for them in a way,” Abu Obaida, a British former Jabhat al-Nusra fighter in Syria, told CNN via direct message. “On social media right now there’s a lot of people quoting Anwar al-Awlaki (the late spokesperson for al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula) and his last speech when he said that America will turn on the Muslims.

That Trump fails to recognize how much he is assisting ISIS with his rhetoric — or simply does not care — is a subject for debate, but it is a fact which he cannot dispute. By choosing to ignore this fact, he is aiding the greatest foreign adversary in the modern world and therefore committing another act of treason.
This same argument also applies to top-ranking White House and Republican aides, including — but likely not limited to — Steve Bannon, Kellyanne Conway, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, and Vice President Pence. While they may not be participating quite as directly as Trump himself, the fact that they support his agenda and are helping to protect him means that they are accessories and are thus also committing acts of treason. All must face justice.
Much has been made of the possibility of impeaching Trump, but this will not happen as long as Republicans maintain control of Congress. However, Trump’s impeachment and removal from office are no longer enough. The administration’s crimes against this nation fall under Article 3, Section 3 of the Constitution, which outlines the offense of treason:

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

Trump’s firing of James Comey to impede the investigation into an act of war against our nation, and his assistance to ISIS in the form of providing them with propaganda for

recruitment, both provide “Aid and Comfort” to enemies of the United States. It would be difficult to find a more grave offense among those Trump and his team have already committed against this nation and its people. But all involved must face justice.
And that’s why the impeachment and removal of Donald Trump from the Oval Office are merely the first steps in what must be a long-term policy to redeem the United States in the eyes of the world. They are certainly important steps in restoring the credibility of our government, our standing in the eyes of the world, and our very democracy. But they must not be the only steps, lest we still be left with Mike Pence as the acting president after Trump’s removal. No, to quote our new fuhrer, we must “drain the swamp.”
Draining the swamp means not only ejecting Trump from the presidency, but also bringing himself and everyone assisting in his agenda up on charges of treason. They must be convicted (there is little room to doubt their guilt). And then — upon receiving guilty verdicts — they must all be executed under the law. Anything less than capital punishment — or at least life imprisonment without parole in a maximum security detention facility — would send yet another message to the world that America has lost its moral compass. In order for America’s morality and leadership to be restored, it must rebuke Donald Trump, his entire administration, and his legislative agenda in the strongest manner possible. And nothing would do more than to convict them of the highest offense defined by our Constitution, and then to deliver the ultimate punishment. Donald Trump deserves nothing less. Mitch McConnell, Steve Bannon, and Paul Ryan should also share Donald Trump’s fate, for they have done more than practically anyone to protect him and to throw our country under the proverbial bus. In order to survive, we as a nation must deliver the ultimate punishment under the law to all involved in its current destruction.

Flashback: Loretta Lynch Calls For ‘Blood and Death’ in the Streets

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By Cristina Laila
The Gateway Pundit
June 14, 2017

As TGP reported back in March, former US Attorney General Loretta Lynch released a disturbing video calling for marching, blood and even death.

 Lynch worked for President Obama and is most known for not investigating the Clinton Foundation and for meeting former President Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac in June 2016 while his wife, Hillary Clinton, was being investigated for illegal email abuses while she was Obama’s Secretary of State.

Earlier today, Congressman Scalise was shot by an ultra left-wing Bernie Sanders supporter. Is this what Loretta Lynch was talking about when she said brought up the hard work that had to be done even if it requires bloodshed and death to achieve the left’s ideals?

Loretta Lynch: “We have always had to work to move this country forward to achieve the great ideals of our Founding Fathers. They’ve marched, they’ve bled, yes some of them have died. This is hard. Every good thing is. We have done this before; we can do this again.”

Did the Congressional baseball game shooter heed to AG Loretta Lynch’s call for more ‘marching, blood, death on streets’?

 

Abortion Clinic Closes That Was Cited by State for 44 Pages of Health Code Violations

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By Maria Gallagher
LfeNews.com
June 7, 2017

The sign on the door says it all—the troubled Hillcrest abortion facility in Harrisburg is closed until further nothttp://www.lifenews.com/2017/06/07/abortion-clinic-closes-that-was-cited-by-state-for-44-pages-of-heath-code-violations/ice.

Several Pennsylvania state Senators recently sent a letter to the Secretary of the PA Department of Health, asking why the abortion center’s license had not been revoked.

The letter followed the release of a 44-page document noting the health and safety failures of the long-time abortion operation.

Violations included everything from failing to maintain proper medical credentials to maintaining supplies that were 13 years old. Hillcrest also performed a number of abortions without having a nurse present. In addition, staff members failed to undergo the criminal background checks mandated for seeing patients under 18 years old.

Hillcrest’s troubles date back at least six years, when the abortion outfit was first cited for safety failures. The abortion center has been cited three times since, with the latest report suggesting that the violations have become more egregious.

Pennsylvania passed a law in 2011 requiring abortion facilities to meet basic health and safety standards. The law was a response to the massive tragedy in West Philadelphia, where abortionist Kermit Gosnell was ultimately convicted of killing three full-term babies and causing the death of a female immigrant patient, Karnamaya Mongar.

2A Group Is Helping Ohio Teachers Take School Safety to the Next Level

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By Erika Haas
Bearing Arms
June 9, 2017

Thanks to the Buckeye Firearms Foundation, teachers in Ohio will receive free training on how to respond to an active shooter on their campus.

The foundation is funding a three-day workshop put on by FASTER (Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response).

FASTER is a unique non-profit that provides “practical violence response training.” Its program doesn’t teach school staff and faculty the typical lockdown procedure – clearing halls, barricading doors, covering windows. It teaches them how to actually take down an active shooter.

“In a lot of cases and across the country, law enforcement’s two, five, ten, fifteen minutes away depending on the jurisdiction,” Andrew Blubaugh, a former police officer and law enforcement trainer who now teaches for FASTER, told WOSU Radio. “So the next best person is somebody who is in the building, who is educated, that we already trust with our kids, and we can give them the skills that they need.”

“They’re not expecting a teacher,” Blubaugh added. “They’re looking for uniformed officers. That’s what they’re going to be cued in on. So you have the element of surprise.”

On it’s website, FASTER notes that its program is not meant to replace police officers or other first responders “but to allow teachers, administrators, and other personnel on-site to stop school violence rapidly and render medical aid immediately.”

Chris Cerino, who is also a former police officer and law enforcement trainer that now teaches for FASTER, broke down the course.

“We teach them about target and backstop. We give them good marksmanship skills,” Cerino told WOSU Radio. “We talk to them about closing the distances and using cover. And we also talk to them about not shooting when they shouldn’t or can’t.”

Participants are also taught emergency medical care. Although, they’re told that caring for someone who is injured isn’t the priority in such a situation.

“It is true if somebody is injured and little Suzy that you know is laying there bleeding, at this point, it is your job to go stop the shooting,” Michelle Cerino, who also works with FASTER, explained. “You’re the one that is supposed to go on the hunt.”

Cerino also teaches participants on how to restrain the shooter if he/she is caught.

Lastly, participants are instructed on how to properly conceal their weapons in the classroom.

As WOSU reminds us, in Ohio, it is up to each district whether or not teachers and other staff are allowed to carry a concealed weapon on school grounds. Districts are not required to reveal to the state whether concealed carry is permitted on their campuses or which staff members have chosen to carry, meaning the number of armed teachers in Ohio is currently unknown. However, it is estimated that around 40 districts now permit concealed carry on their campuses.

Regardless of how many armed teachers there are in Ohio, hopefully they’re all participating in the FASTER program this summer. Props to Buckeye Firearms Foundation for giving them such a great opportunity to help keep them and their students safe.

Political Correctness Rears Its Ugly Head in Southeast Missouri

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By Elvis Dunn
elvisdunn27@gmail.com

Jim Hoft, The Gateway Pundit, was invited by the Southeast Chapter of The Missouri Writer’s Guild to speak on June 17, 2017 in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Dr. Susan Swartwout, a professor in the Liberal Arts Department of Southeast Missouri State University, invited him to speak on the subject of “Defeating Fake News Through Blogging.” But for “logistical” reasons his speaking engagement was cancelled on Friday, June 16th.

Reading the comments from the cancellation​ post on The Gateway Pundit leads one to believe that other forces were at work. The primary culprits are the radical Leftist academics from public and private education institutions. There​ was a very demeaning and disrespectful post from “Sheltie Parker, McDonald’s worker at Harvard” declaring victory over the trampling of the guarantee of Freedom of Expression by way of the cancellation of this speech that radical Leftist cannot bear to hear.

It is a sad day for Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and the United States of America.

Written by Leatherneck Blogger

June 17, 2017 at 16:37

15-Year-Old Armed Robber Shot by Intended Victim, an Off-Duty Customs Agent

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By Jenn Jacques
Bearing Arms
June 1, 2017

A 15-year-old armed robber picked the wrong ‘victim’ when he and two 14-year-old accomplices attempted to rob an off-duty U.S. Customs and Border Protection Friday night.

The incident happened shortly before 8:15 p.m. in the area of First Avenue and Colorado Boulevard in Arcadia, California.

The customs agent was walking on a sidewalk when he was attacked from behind by three suspects – two 14-year-olds and an armed 15-year-old identified as Pasadena resident Darius Smith, authorities said.

One of the assailants allegedly repeatedly struck the agent in the head as another pointed a gun at him and demanded his property.

“The victim thought the subjects were going to rob and shoot him so he retrieved his department-issued handgun,” Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Caroline Rodriguez said. “The victim shot at the subjects in an effort to defend himself.”

Two of the suspects were hit with gunfire, the third suspect fled the scene. The 15-year-old suspect was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. The two 14-year-old suspects were apprehended; one was hospitalized with non-life threatening gunshot wounds, the other, who fled the scene of the crime on foot, was booked at Central Juvenile Hall in Boyle Heights on suspicion of robbery.

Arcadia police officers confirmed the handgun Smith allegedly used in the crime was recovered at the scene.

The agent suffered bruising to his face but did not require medical attention.

14- and 15-year old armed robbers… this is who has guns in California. Looks like those gun laws are really working in the Golden State!

Linda Sarsour raises $80,000 for questionable anti-Muslim “hate crime” by “white man”

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By Christine Williams-Douglas
Jihad Watch
June 5, 2017

Activist Linda Sarsour has raised more than $80,000 for a Somali woman who claims she was attacked by a white man in a hate crime, but there’s much more to the story.

“Much more” is an understatement. Raising a large amount of money for the “victim” of a Muslim hate crime without an investigation, and in which the victim looks like the perpetrator, is a clever way for Sarsour to make herself look charitable while she continues to stir up the rage of Muslims who have internalized a false victimology complex.

As stated by Robert Spencer:

Linda Sarsour is an energetic purveyor of the “Islamophobia” myth, and has hysterically claimedthat “Muslim kids” are being “executed” in the United States. She was instrumental in prevailing upon de Blasio to end legal and necessary surveillance in Muslim communities in New York. She is also a frequent visitor to the Obama White House, and has claimed that the jihad underwear bomber was a CIA agent — part of what she claims is a U.S. war against Islam. She is a practiced exploiter of the ‘hate’ smear against foes of jihad terror and Islamic supremacism, and has never apologized for using the Islamic honor murder of Shaima Alawadi to spread lies about the prevalence of hate crimes against Muslims in America. She is also an enthusiastic supporter of the “Palestinian” jihad against Israel, and has even claimed that feminists cannot and must not support Israel.

Linda Sarsour and CAIR are desperately trying to create the false impression that hate crimes against innocent Muslims are common. They are claiming that the Rahma Warsame case was a hate crime without evidence and before any investigation. The executive director of CAIR-Columbus, Jennifer Nimer, an attorney for alleged victim Rahma Warame, said in a statement:

The fact that the perpetrator was not taken into custody and was not charged raises serious concerns and sends a very dangerous message.

What’s really dangerous is the attempt by Sarsour and CAIR to manipulate the facts and create an impression of “Islamophobia,” fanning the flames of a bogus us (Muslims) versus them (white people) narrative (even though Islam is not a race, and Muslims are of all races).

“Linda Sarsour Has Raised $80K For A Anti-Muslim Hate Crime”, by Chuck Ross, Daily Caller, June 5, 2017:

Activist Linda Sarsour has raised more than $80,000 for a Somali woman who claims she was attacked by a white man in a hate crime, but there’s much more to the story, the two people accused of the hate attack tell The Daily Caller.

Sarsour started the fundraiser for Rahma Warsame, a 40-year-old single mother who lives in Columbus, Ohio, who says she was attacked on Saturday night by a white man while defending a friend.

Sarsour, a leader in the pro-Palestine cause who has come under fire for her sympathetic views on sharia law, posted a picture of Warsame in the hospital and said that she has four missing teeth, a swollen face, swollen nose and busted lip.

We must unite against hate. Please support Rahma who was brutally beaten in an alleged hate crime in Columbus, OH. https://t.co/cQ5tnkz5t9 pic.twitter.com/A49Ya1VuUR

— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) June 4, 2017

In her fundraising pitch for Warsame, Sarsour says that Warsame will miss work due to her injuries and needs money to provide for her 12-year-old son. The goal for the fundraiser has been increased several times since it was posted on Sunday. The goal is now $100,000.

The Columbus chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has also gotten involved in the case and is calling on police to pursue a hate crime investigation. The group compared the case to an incident in which a white man killed two people who were defending a Muslim woman on a train ride in Portland last month.

According to CAIR, Warsame claimed that the white man told her “you all will be shipped back to Africa.” The group held a press conference on Sunday to complain that the man involved in the incident was not arrested.

But Samantha Morales says that the Sarsour and CAIR have the story all wrong, including the allegations that racial epithets were hurled at Warsame.

Morales, 31 and of Mexican heritage, says that she was attacked first by a mob of men and women, including Warsame, following a neighborhood argument involving a woman and her son.

“What happened is not what she is claiming. The woman that is in the hospital, I feel sorry for her, but she is one of the women who was kicking and hitting me after I got tased,” Morales told TheDC in a phone interview on Monday.

Morales, who works as an insurance claims agent, says that her boyfriend, Ricky Boyce, is the man alleged by Sarsour and CAIR to be the white man who hurled racial insults at Warsame.

But both Morales and Boyce say that he uttered no racial pejoratives in Saturday’s incident, which they say began after Morales intervened while a woman of African heritage who lives in her apartment complex was yelling at and hitting her son with a shoe.

“I didn’t even have time to talk to any of them because they were over there jumping [Morales] at the time,” Boyce told TheDC, denying that he made racial remarks during the incident.

Morales says that Sarsour and CAIR have ignored another major piece of the story: Morales herself was transported to the emergency room by ambulance because of the injuries she sustained in Saturday’s melee.

“They’re not even mentioning that I was the victim. They came at me. The woman that’s in the hospital is part of the group that was aggressing me,” Morales said.

A copy of emergency room discharge papers that Morales provided to TheDC show that she underwent a CT scan and X-rays on her hand and ankle at a Columbus hospital. She claims that she sustained a concussion during the attack.

Morales said that the saga began after she yelled from her porch at a woman who was screaming at her child and hitting him with a shoe in a common area behind her apartment.

“I went outside. I wasn’t trying to get involved. I just thought the presence of an adult would have stopped her,” Morales says.

But Morales says the woman — who Morales says she does not know — left for a moment and came back angry and threatened to break the windows on her car and apartment. The woman, who Morales says was carrying a stick, then walked near Morales’ car and accused Morales and Boyce of having taken her child.

Morales says she called 911 and explained what had transpired before the threats.

The standoff escalated to violence soon after, Morales says.

“Four or five different men” assaulted Morales before someone used a taser on her, she claims. Then a group of women joined in the assault, both Morales and Boyce said.

It was after the taser was used that Boyce, who was watching from the apartment, says he sprung into action.

Boyce says he’s sure he hit someone in the scuffle but says he can’t be sure that he struck Warsame. He also strongly denies purposely targeting her.

Morales says that police temporarily detained Boyce but soon let him go. He says that officers realized that he was not an aggressor in the incident.

A police report taken of the incident backs up Morales’ and Boyce’s claims. According to the report, a Muna Warsame had a Taser at the scene of the incident……

Abortion Clinic Closes That Was Cited by State for 44 Pages of Health Code Violations

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By Maria Gallagher
LifeNews.com
June 7, 2017

The sign on the door says it all—the troubled Hillcrest abortion facility in Harrisburg is closed until further notice.

Several Pennsylvania state Senators recently sent a letter to the Secretary of the PA Department of Health, asking why the abortion center’s license had not been revoked.

The letter followed the release of a 44-page document noting the health and safety failures of the long-time abortion operation.

Violations included everything from failing to maintain proper medical credentials to maintaining supplies that were 13 years old. Hillcrest also performed a number of abortions without having a nurse present. In addition, staff members failed to undergo the criminal background checks mandated for seeing patients under 18 years old.

Hillcrest’s troubles date back at least six years, when the abortion outfit was first cited for safety failures. The abortion center has been cited three times since, with the latest report suggesting that the violations have become more egregious.

Pennsylvania passed a law in 2011 requiring abortion facilities to meet basic health and safety standards. The law was a response to the massive tragedy in West Philadelphia, where abortionist Kermit Gosnell was ultimately convicted of killing three full-term babies and causing the death of a female immigrant patient, Karnamaya Mongar.

FGM vs Political Correctness — Which Will Prevail?

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By Paula Kweskin
The Clarion Project
June 7, 2017

In February, federal investigators uncovered a Michigan-based network of doctors and others who practice female genital mutilation (FGM) on girls as young as six at medical clinics in the state. FGM is the cutting of a girl’s genitalia with the aim to “purify” her and repress her sexuality. All defendants in the case are members of the Dawoodi Bohra, a religious Muslim group. One of the girls who underwent the procedure was reportedly told that she was going on a “special girls’ trip” to “get the germs out.”

While the victim in this case may find justice in the courtroom, their lives and bodies have been irrevocably changed. Survivors of FGM whom I spoke to for my documentary film Honor Diaries tell of the physical and emotional pain that remains long after the abuse. Sexual intercourse and childbirth become horribly painful and traumatic experiences. Women may have chronic urinary tract infections and are often plagued with depression and other invisible scars.

The World Health Organization estimates at least 200 million women today live with the consequences of FGM. In the United States, 507,000 women are at risk or have undergone the procedure. In the U.S., there is a federal statute against the practice and it is criminalized in several states.  However, these laws have not prevented families from mutilating their girls or traveling overseas to undergo the process. All that might change.

The arrest and prosecution of the Michigan perpetrators is a groundbreaking moment for women’s rights activists in the United States and globally. I applaud the federal investigators and prosecutors who took a stand against gender-based violence. It is the first national prosecution of an FGM case and many important questions will be raised during the course of the investigation and trial.

Already, defendants attempted (and failed) to receive bond by using their religious freedom as a defense. Defendants asserted the practice should not be classified as FGM, but rather as a religious practice. U.S. Magistrate Elizabeth Stafford denied bond stating that religion would not be used “as a shield” in the case. However, it is likely that as the case continues, religious freedom will be argued again.

I am concerned for the maelstrom which may ensue when the case goes to trial. At that moment, will women’s rights be asserted or will they be diluted in favor of political correctness? In the past, I’ve witnessed the disintegration of women’s rights in favor of political correctness: my film Honor Diaries was censored (in Michigan, actually) when certain groups deemed it “Islamophobic” for bringing up FGM, forced marriage and honor killings.  Instead of focusing on the inherent misogyny of these practices, my film was vilified for having difficult conversations about cultural and religious practices.

The first federal FGM case will raise challenging questions. There is a simple metric we can use to evaluate competing claims: culture is no excuse for abuse. No religion or culture should be the impetus for hurting, mutilating or abusing anyone, and our children should be protected. For too long, FGM has been practiced under the radar in the United States. The arrest and prosecution of these individuals is a step in the right direction, but the true test will come at trial: will we allow our political correctness to coax us into complacency? Or will we use this moment to assert our loftiest convictions: that all people are equal and should be treated as such, regardless of their religion and culture? My hope for all women and girls is that we will stand for equality.

Paula Kweskin is an attorney specializing in human rights law. She is the producer of Honor Diaries and the founder/director of the Censored Women’s Film Festival, a response to the censorship she and other filmmakers have received for highlighting women’s rights. 

 

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