Commentary

Chen: The Constitution and the 2016 Election

This past September 17, we commemorated the 229th anniversary of the United States Constitution. I wouldn’t be surprised if you heard very little about the day.

It’s a shame as it celebrated the most important document in our nation’s history.

The Constitution establishes the balance of power between our three branches of government.  It delineates the rights that we as Americans hold sacred.  And it’s the blueprint on which we’ve based over two centuries of successful democratic governance.

Unfortunately, too few of our public leaders give the Constitution the respect it deserves.  They either ignore it, or worse yet, ascribe to the Constitution certain rights and privileges that were never intended.

Some judges are guilty of this. So too are some members of Congress.  But the worst offender may be President Obama, who has expanded the power of the presidency by resorting to unprecedented unilateral action.

Americans should see this election as an opportunity to restore the balance of power and respect for fundamental rights that our Constitution so elegantly established.

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Medved: Children “Very Important”’ Marriage, Not So Much

A September poll by CBS News and the New York Times revealed troubling contradictions in attitudes toward marriage and children.  Nearly 2,000 adults of all ages were asked: “For you personally, is being married either now or in the future very important, somewhat important, not very important or not at all important?” Surprisingly, a minority of women—just 47 percent—viewed marriage as very important. A far greater percentage—74 percent said “being a parent either now or in the future” was very important.

In other words, nearly a third of women value children more than the marital bond that provides the best way to raise those children—a sad anomaly reflected in out-of-wedlock birthrates now approaching 50 percent.

The poll suggests that females are giving up on marriage as an institution more notably than their male counterparts; the men in the study actually considered marriage a higher priority than the women.

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Chen: Now the Debates

In about 40 days, Americans will go to the polls to pick a new president.  Between now and then, few events will be more consequential than the three general election debates.

These debates are important. They are the only opportunities that we will have to see the candidates side-by-side, sharing their respective visions for the future of our country.

Debates often produce memorable moments.  Think of Al Gore’s sighs in 2000 or Ronald Reagan’s pronouncement that he would not make Walter Mondale’s “youth and inexperience” an issue in that campaign.

But voters should be on the lookout for more than just glib one-liners.

This is our chance to hold the candidates accountable for the policies they are proposing and their preparedness to assume the presidency.  Do they have plans to jumpstart economic growth or reduce the debt?  To lower health care costs and improve our schools?  To keep our nation safe?

Both Clinton and Trump should be able to answer these questions.  It’s up to us to watch and listen.

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Mohler: “Sister Wives” at the Supreme Court

A polygamy case is now being appealed to the United States Supreme Court.

It’s the so-called Brown case or the “Sister Wives” case based upon a reality television program about a man with multiple wives in Utah.

The Browns’ attorney, Jonathan Turley, has argued on the basis of religious liberty, but he has also been making the argument that if same-sex marriage were to become a legal right, as it has, there is no moral or legal argument against polygamy also being legalized.

If the United States Supreme Court doesn’t take this case, it is almost assuredly because it fears the public reaction of doing so. As recently as last year, the Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts in his dissent to the Obergefell decision legalizing same-sex marriage warned that the recognition and legalization of polygamy would naturally follow the logic of that case.

We will do well to pay close attention to the Sister Wives’ case.

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Hewitt: The Politicization Of Sport

Pepperdine California Democratic Party

I have compassion, as do almost everyone in this country, for the 70,000 transgendered individuals living in the United States.

But I loathe the NCAA.

The NCAA has withdrawn all championship events from North Carolina for the 2016/2017 academic year because the state has passed laws requiring people to use the bathroom corresponding to their sex at birth.

Mark Emmert, the president of the NCAA, explained saying, “We believe in providing a safe and respectful environment at our events.”

If you believe this, Mr. Emmert, shut down and sanction every college. You would not let players take the field when lightning strikes because that is a real safety issue. This is politically correct nonsense.

If the NCAA can tell Penn State to shut down and erase all of its losses and wins, if they can suspend programs that are state-funded for years and years, the “voluntary membership” aspect of the organization isn’t voluntary. It’s just the politicization of sport by the nanny state.

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Proft: “Out Of Alignment with My Values”

In a 2004 interview on the topic of his faith, President Obama was asked for his definition of sin.

He answered, “Being out of alignment with my values.”

Obama signaled his belief that he is above the law—his own god, really—but the GOP failed to call him on the question and press him to amplify his answer.

Recently, Hillary Clinton was asked by Charlie Rose if what she did regarding her private email server was wrong?

Hillary answered, “Well, it was wrong because look what it has generated.”

So wrong only exists for Hillary when an act makes her look bad—and thus jeopardizes her political ambitions.

Hillary has already amplified the message that—for all practical purposes—she, too, is her own god.

In 2016, the GOP would do well to call the question. If you don’t want America to become an autocratic government with everyone doing what’s right in their own eyes, then you probably shouldn’t vote for someone who seems to think she is her own god, right?

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Mohler: Supression Of Religious Speech

The Daily Caller recently reported that “under a Massachusetts civil rights agency’s interpretation of new anti-discrimination law, churches can be forced to let biological males who identify as transgender women use the women’s bathroom.”

The guidelines apply to any place of public accommodation and specifically state that “even a church could be seen as a place of public accommodation if it holds a secular event, such as a spaghetti supper, that is open to the general public.”

Use of gender pronouns is also at issue. UCLA Professor Eugene Volokh explains, “Church leaders have to use the words that the law requires, even when they view them as false or even blasphemous.”

This is simply astounding. We have a major law professor from a major law school making very clear that these guidelines could require Christian leaders and church members to utter what they believe to be blasphemous or be accused with violating anti-discrimination laws.

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