Commentary

Mohler: Crisis In The GOP

This election cycle has unveiled a number of shocking developments in the Republican Party.

Republicans have long had a reputation for standing for limited government and a certain set of principles that were understood to be consistent with the Framers of the American Republic.

In a very real sense, Donald Trump represents virtually everything the Republican Party for the last generation has defined itself as being against. This tells us that as we are watching a crisis in the GOP. We’re also watching a basic renegotiation of the American compact.

This raises a very fundamental question: Can America’s experiment in representative democracy and limited government sustain this? That is not at all clear.

The fact is that Donald Trump is almost certainly going to become the standard bearer of the Republican Party: A man who has held positions even recently that are directly opposed to those historically undertaken by the Republican Party, a man whose very persona is the exact repudiation of what Republicans have called for in a presidential candidate.

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Medved: The Superhero Substitution

Comic book superheroes have come to dominate popular culture as never before: of the ten top opening weekends in Hollywood history, seven of them featured superheroes from Marvel or DC comics. Most recently, “Iron Man” and other luminaries from the Marvel galaxy co-starred with Captain America in “Civil War,” which earned nearly $200,000,000 in its first three days of release. These familiar figures, each with distinctive powers, personalities and back story, function like Olympians for the ancient Greeks or Norse gods for the Vikings.

Is it a coincidence that the power of these comic book gods has increased just as the perceived authority of the biblical God seems to have dissipated—with an unprecedented 20 percent of Americans now describing themselves as disconnected from organized religion?

Batman and Superman may be beloved figures, but they offer a feeble substitute for the more significant, more richly human figures in Scripture.

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Mohler: North Carolina and the U.S. Constitution

The governor of North Carolina has announced that his state will file suit against the Obama Administration and against the Department of Justice because of their demands that North Carolina surrender its recently-adopted legislation known as House Bill 2. The bill stipulates that persons must use, in public facilities, the bathrooms that correspond to the sex they were assigned at birth.

North Carolina claims that the Justice Department is misreading Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and that the government is abusing its authority by making the Act pertain to transgender issues when it clearly had nothing to do with them.

Governor Pat McCrory made the crucial point that Congress alone has the authority to amend or revise the Civil Rights Act. If the federal government were to do that—and the legislation were to be enacted—the State of North Carolina concedes it would be in a very different situation.

The U.S. Justice Department intends to double down on its actions against North Carolina. Prepare for a battle of worldviews, and a battle over the U.S. Constitution.

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Brooks: Time For Diversity

One of the great intellectual and moral epiphanies of our time is the realization that diversity among human beings is a blessing. Unfortunately, new research also shows that academia has itself stopped well short in both the understanding and practice of true diversity—the diversity of ideas.

This year, a team of scholars published a paper showing that for every politically conservative social psychologist in academia there are about 14 liberal social psychologists. Why the imbalance?

Well, respondents to the survey admitted (overwhelmingly) that they’d be less likely to support hiring a conservative colleague than a liberal colleague with the same qualifications.

Academics and intellectuals like to see their community as a major force for diversity and open-mindedness throughout American society.

Now they should be consistent by applying those values to their own profession.

How about celebrating ideological diversity?

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Mohler: The Accidental Draft Vote

Last week, the House Armed Services Committee voted to register women for the draft. What is particularly notable is that the vote was—at least in part—accidental.

Why accidental? Because the author of the bill, Representative Duncan Hunter, Republican of California, offered the suggestion in an effort to try to get the committee to do the exact opposite. Instead, the committee (dominated by Republicans) voted 32 to 30 to require women to register for the draft.

Once again, we see how fast the velocity of moral change is happening in America. Congressman Hunter himself underestimated the velocity of the moral change even when it came to his own committee, dominated by his own party in the United States House of Representatives.

Successive generations of feminist ideology and political correctness have rendered some members of Congress incapable of recognizing or having the courage to stand by an argument that in some sense men and women are different, and that it is morally wrong to obligate women to serve in combat positions or to be registered for the draft.

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Medved: Is Life Really Worse Today?

Sinking approval ratings show the Republican Party losing touch with the public by peddling simple-minded nostalgia for the past.  A recent Pew survey shows 70 percent of self-identified “Conservative Republicans” agreeing with the statement: “Compared with 50 years ago, life for people like me is worse.” That’s ridiculous: in 1966, we endured rising, not falling crime, major riots devastated our cities, hundreds died each week in Vietnam, and we faced top tax rates of 70 percent.

Today, medical care and life expectancy have vastly improved, college enrollment has increased 400 percent and the “Evil Empire” of the Soviet Union has been consigned to the ash heap of history. Young people and black people know it’s absurd to view all change as negative—nearly 80 percent of them say life’s gotten better, not worse in the last 50 years.

“Make America Great Again” is a slogan that promotes pessimism about the present and air-brushes the past, while alienating young and diverse votes the GOP needs.

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Hewitt: National Day Of Prayer 2016

Pepperdine California Democratic Party

Today is the annual National Day of Prayer which will be recognized in Washington D.C. and at thousands of gatherings around the country.

This special day of prayer is a healthy reminder for us all. Has it ever been more self-evident that we ought to turn our hearts to God in prayer—individually, in our communities and collectively as a nation?

It’s hard to make the point better than did President Abraham Lincoln—back in 1863—when he proclaimed a day of prayer. He wrote:

it is the duty of nations as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord.

Won’t you join me and all of us at Salem Media as we set our hearts toward God on this National Day of Prayer?

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