an integral part of understanding the Christmas Season
Most Gazette readers require no reminder of the ‘unplanned’ birth of Jesus we venerate during the Christmas season. Matthew 1:18-20 explains Joseph’s love for Mary and belief in God was so strong he followed the angel’s instructions to continue the betrothed course and not quietly divorce Mary as she was indeed bringing the Son of God into this world. Fewer readers may be familiar with US District Court Judge Myron Thompson’s recent Planned Parenthood ruling further assaulting the civil rights of citizens who do not wish to subsidize those committing infanticide of their children.
Reason Staff Editor Elizabeth Nolan Brown [10/28/15] wrote, “Alabama must restore the contract with Planned Parenthood as a Medicaid provider, at least for now, because Alabama offered no reason whatsoever for the sudden defunding, the state was likely in violation of federal Medicaid law, which requires letting patients see any provider that accepts Medicaid unless the state establishes that they're not qualified. Providers, of course, are not generally obligated to take Medicaid patients, and many don't because of low reimbursement rates. But under federal law, Medicaid patients have ‘freedom of choice’ among qualified Medicaid providers.”
Planned Parenthood Southeast filed the lawsuit after Gov. Bentley’s determination to end our State’s agreement with the only two clinics (Birmingham & Mobile) in Alabama. The termination letter did not give any reason(s) for ending the provider agreement but Bentley publicly stated concerns over Center for Medical Progress (CMP) videos on fetal tissue programs. Quoting Bentley saying, "I respect human life and do not want Alabama to be associated with an organization that does not," Brown cited neither of Alabama's Planned Parenthood clinics participate in fetal tissue programs from Judge Thompson’s decision and further reported Alabama as one of several states trying to strip Planned Parenthood of Medicaid funding. Texas health officials informed Planned parenthood clinics were "liable, directly or by affiliation, for a series of serious Medicaid program violations" as highlighted in the CMP videos prompting Planned Parenthood Federation of America's Executive V.P. Dawn Laguens to respond, "it is completely outrageous that Texas officials are using these thoroughly discredited, fraudulent videos to cut women off from preventive health care," vowing Planned Parenthood would "fight back against this outrageous, malicious, political attack in Texas with everything we've got." Louisiana also attempted to end its Medicaid relationship with Planned Parenthood, but a federal judge ruled October 19 it must provide funding for at least 14 more days. She also quoted an NPR report, "In 2011, when Planned Parenthood was also in the headlines, Indiana passed a law barring Medicaid funding to any entity that also performed abortions, even if those abortions were performed with nonpublic funds," later blocked in a federal appellant court. Brown thought Judge Diane Sykes’ quote from the majority opinion, "Although Indiana has broad authority to exclude unqualified providers from its Medicaid program, the state does not have plenary authority to exclude a class of providers for any reason - more particularly for a reason unrelated to provider qualifications," important to include in her report. Most doubt Alabama or Louisiana will succeed in current efforts to cut ties with Planned Parenthood. Ms. Brown concluded her report with, “If Republicans want to strip Planned Parenthood of state Medicaid funding, Congress will have to change federal Medicaid law first.”
After suffering all that current news, some ask - doesn’t the Hyde amendment (prohibiting use of federal funds for abortion except cases where the mother's life is in danger or pregnancy results from incest/incest) apply to this ruling? Hyde addressed a symptom; the source of the problem is unconstitutional federal programs/policies like Medicare/Medicaid imposed by extremists decades ago. In a world of ‘fungiblity’ Hyde doesn’t matter. Alabama Medicaid Agency records show $4,351 (Thompson’s order stated $5,600) paid for services to patients at Planned Parenthood's Alabama clinics over the last two years in Mike Cason’s Al.com report; payments were mostly for contraceptive services and did not include abortions.
State, local and private efforts can address indigent health care concerns, the federal government is not authorized to address the issue and has shown diseconomies our central government of such a large/populous coalition experiences. Taxpayers who do not wish to subsidize those killing their children have the right to move to another State/locale which doesn’t exchange with a company (who may not engage in the illegal/reprehensible behavior in their jurisdiction) rendering support to the activity in other jurisdictions. The right and tradition of boycott was once strong in our nation.
Some assert Thompson’s injunction reinforces Jane Doe's right to seek family planning services at the qualified provider of choice - which is absurd. Nothing has been done to deny Jane that right - she (or any private donor who wishes to subsidize Jane) may purchase whatever service and/or provider however she see’s fit. Thompson’s poor training and understanding of letter and Spirit of the Constitution fails to protect the civil rights of citizens in general NOT to subsidize Jane. States as the sovereign unit (who may also authorize local governments to act) may fund/subsidize abortions, fetal tissue, etc. but Alabama does not. Private expenditure of time and effort may also occur, some follow their conscience to take those wanting to end the life of their child to locales which will do so; others follow their conscience to discourage killing and promote adoption, financial help in raising children of mothers often young, inexperience and of meager means for the task. This ‘freedom of choice’ to devote one’s time, money and effort to the manner of assistance they prefer has been usurped for the modern ‘choice’ movement more interested in imposing their preferred choice and have others pay for it.
I’ve made it clear in past columns Roe v. Wade is one of DC’s more tangible assaults on State sovereignty and I’m a pragmatist on the issue. If the people of a State want to allow murder in Massachusetts and not in Mississippi, it is NOT a federal offense. The definition and enforcement of murder isn’t authorised to the federal government. I’m not foolish enough to think banning murder will end all the killing (even less so the immediate and tangible murder of a defenseless child inside or just outside a womb) we’ve observed, but I want the freedom to possibly live in a State which doesn’t subsidize the murder of one’s own child. If you wish to kill your own child, do it on your own purse. It is not a lot to ask federal judges to ban taking my treasure to subsidize what I find reprehensible. This is an integral part of securing the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity. My biggest grievance is to stop forcing that blood on my hands - it is even sadder commentary upon our churches who’ve allowed governments to be their moral compass instead taking the lead on issues of this sort. The Romans observed and feared the fidelity of the meek and poor to Christians who helped them more than their government asserting kindness and benevolence when the actions and results of Rome clearly provided the contrary. I fear the system is so dysfunctional after so many generations of distorted results, collapse of the corrupt command economy must occur in hopes there are enough surviving righteous folks to reassemble effective private efforts to address indigent healthcare.
In keeping with the Christmas story, there’s little surprise potentates installed by the central authority are willing to use fear and the killing of many innocent children to reassert/hold onto power. Matthew 2:1-16 explains Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of King Herod where wise men came from the east to Jerusalem asking, “Where is He that is born King of the Jews?” Following His star in the east, they came to behold and worship Him. When Herod heard this he was troubled and gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together demanding of them where Christ should be born, and they answered Bethlehem. Herod ‘privily’ called the wise men and inquired about the time the star appeared. Departing for Bethlehem Herod said to the wise men, “Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found Him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.” The star continued before them, till it stood over where the young child was to their great joy! They saw the young child with Mary and fell down to worship Him then presented their gifts of gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. Being warned of God in a dream they should not return to Herod, the wise men traveled back to their own country another way. Similarly, the Lord’s angel appeared to Joseph in a dream saying, “Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.” When Joseph woke, he took the young child and His mother by night, and departed into Egypt and remained there until Herod’s death. The wise men successfully averted Herod which triggered great rage. King Herod slew all the children of Bethlehem and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under according to the time he had diligently inquired of the wise men.
I pray no one is surprised potentates of our modern Rome are just as adept in using fear and killing of innocent children as Herod in the attempt to reaffirm his power and tyranny. I doubt anyone is surprised federal judges who allow juries to decide/convict corrupt politicians like Messrs. Scrushy and Siegelman in 2006 (sadly, the bureaucrat included in the same litigation, who had a much more defined money trail of paying for favoritism was NOT convicted) are threatened with impeachment/must be removed and those with poor docket performance, allow corruption and advance federal hegemony remain. Indeed nothing new under the sun here.
This column is intended to be at least one sobering moment in your Christmas celebration to think about how important it is to be an integral part of standing against despotism in our federal, local and State governments. It is my sincere prayer all who know the power of Jesus Christ’s teachings will take Him into their hearts this blessed season and overcome the distraction of consumerism and destruction at the hands of the ruling elite who have made government their god. I know the Holy Spirit in Jesus Christ, Son of the true God is indeed greater than the spirit of evil in the sons of Nimrod, Caesar(s) et al because it is His name which remains above all nations. This small, unplanned Child of God, relegated to be born in a cave at the behest of a despot setting the world on a course toward increasing darkness, in the City of David among the lowest of mankind by worldly standards would do more to bring light and the Spirit of Zion to a wicked world than Rome could possibly contain.
The wicked want the righteous to give in or die… As you celebrate the beginning of Jesus Christ’s path into this world during the Christmas season, understand the magnitude of the mission His Father set Him upon. If you truly believe and adhere to His teachings, it destroys the power of death and darkness. Without this fear Rome’s (and the many leviathans to follow) ability to advance their despotic ends is thwarted. Jesus showed us the way; it is up to us to have the courage, faith and wisdom to follow. If we do not stand well against evil and corruption in our everyday lives, we’re failing Him and the righteous efforts many suffered so mankind may not be compelled to endure the agony of Roman despotism again. Resistance to tyranny is obedience to God. You can be God’s servant OR a servant to Rome; it is impossible to serve both. It really is that simple. The choice is yours to make or reaffirm every Christmas…
Postscript: Last month’s column provided various signs of trouble in AU Athletics evoking more hate/love mail than usual, yet no response from administrators as requested. Lavish raises associated with scandals revealed more information to consider. Wall Street Journal reports exposing athletic administrators interfering in academics focused on 2013. During the next (2014) raise cycle associate athletics director for academics received a massive raise published at almost $24k - very unusual 13% increase (over six times the 2% pool for faculty) and significantly surpassing the 8% standard cap. Recent AU faculty senate discussions indicate no justification memo submitted for this unusual raise. Athletics now claim it was “really” an 8% raise (outrageous to some along with circumventing policy) and the additional 5% wasn’t an extra-special additional reward for a job very well done, but rather additional income taken as transportation reimbursement. Awarding additional taxable income instead of tax exempt business expense was apparently to trump up their “three-high” retirement calculation. Seems expenses of providing vehicle and/or mileage reimbursement to someone in charge of academic advising for student athletics came to EXACTLY 5% of annual salary. Moreover, why would an individual then be due performance-based merit raises on this “vehicle/mileage raise” in subsequent years? Athletics apparently preferred to publicly admit to senators this absurd scheme to perpetrate fraud upon RSA (including Alabama taxpayers) rather than admit giving a very special/unusual raise to an individual front and center of the scandal exposed by the WSJ. Ironically, the individual reporting to AU senators about this unusual raise to circumvent policy and manipulate RSA was VP of Finance, Don Large; the very same Don Large currently serving on the board of control for the teacher’s retirement system and previously claimed to be the senior university official responsible for approving administrative raises recommended by the Athletics Department. Published AU salary files indicate Mr. Large also received a very nice 8% raise ($28+k) this new budget year. My forecast is a policy change to increase the 8% cap on raises holding back AU Athletics administrators - This IS Auburn…