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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

Arkansas Governor Signs Pro-Religious Discrimination Bill Allowing Doctors to Refuse to Treat LGBTQ Patients

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Arkansas Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson Friday afternoon signed into law a bill designed to give medical professionals, hospitals, insurance companies, and other medical providers – including students – legal protections to discriminate against LGBTQ patients while claiming they have a religious or moral right of “conscience” to do so. SB 289, the “Medical Ethics and Diversity Act,” is a sweeping law that could have devastating implications on the health and well-being of every LGBTQ person in the state.

SB 289 is sponsored by Republican state Senator Kim Hammer, a Missionary Baptist preacher and hospice pastor who earlier this year declared war on Democrats after then-President Donald Trump had been impeached.

As NCRM reported earlier, when Hutchinson’s “Medical Ethics and Diversity Act” goes into effect this summer a physician could refuse to treat a transgender person, a mental health professional could end treatment with a young teenager who just revealed to them he is gay, a pharmacist could refuse to dispense contraceptive medication even if prescribed for non-pregnancy-related illnesses, and a student nurse could refuse to assist with an abortion, even if it were medically necessary to save the life of a woman.

But that’s not all. The new law is so broad that it allows hospitals and even insurance companies to refuse service for – including refusing to pay for – anything their polices claim violates their conscience. Catholic hospitals for decades have been refusing to allow abortions to be performed, but now an insurance company could refuse to pay for HIV medications, or even PrEP. They could refuse to pay for gender confirmation surgery.

Gov. Hutchinson signed the possibly unconstitutional legislation less than a day after signing another anti-LGBTQ bill into law, one that bans transgender girls and women from playing women’s sports.

Hutchinson, who is possibly considering a 2024 presidential run, is term limited and will be out of office after the 2022 election.

Last week the governor signed into law an anti-abortion bill he fully admits was designed to go to the Supreme Court in a far right wing effort to kill Roe v. Wade, 

Hutchinson back in 2015 signed into law an anti-LGBTQ “religious freedom” law he himself had called “divisive,” after having a small portion of the language changed. That same year Gov. Hutchinson allowed a bill prohibiting towns from enacting non-discrimination ordinances to become law.

 

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

‘Tools of the Devil’: At FRC Conference Former Military Officials Denigrate LGBTQ Service Members

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panel of former military officials told religious-right activists at Family Research Council’s “Pray Vote Stand” conference on Oct. 7 that the United States military is threatened by “wokeism” and what the panel claimed are attacks on religious freedom. A retired admiral denounced critical race theory and the LGBTQ movement as “tools of the devil.”

Retired Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin, FRC’s executive vice president, emceed the panel, which included retired Coast Guard Vice Admiral William Dean Lee; Michael Berry, a former Marine and current reservist who is now general counsel for the religious-right legal group First Liberty Institute; and retired Army Col. Joe Martin, who worked for Boykin at Fort Bragg.

Berry portrayed resistance to taking a COVID-19 vaccine as a question of religious liberty, claiming that he gets 60 to 80 messages per hour from service members opposed to the Department of Defense’s vaccine requirement. He said that service members are “telling me, ‘The military is forcing me to choose between my faith and serving my nation.’”

Berry said that he is willing to resist the vaccine mandate, saying, “This is the hill for me to die on.” He continued:

I love being a Marine. I love the Marine Corps. And for them to tell me you must choose between serving your God or serving your country, I say, “The oath doesn’t require me to do that. Neither does the Constitution. You’re the one that’s wrong, not me.”

Martin warned that the military lacks leaders who are competent in developing strategy, warning that he could not even get the Department of Defense to include in its dictionary the term “unrestricted warfare,” which he said describes the Chinese government’s strategy to defeat an enemy without firing a shot. Fentanyl coming into the United States from China is the equivalent of poisoning our wells and killing citizens, he said, but “no one’s talking about it.”

Boykin jumped in to compare “unrestricted warfare” by the Chinse government to LGBTQ activism and “the Marxist movement in America.” Here’s Boykin:

You made an interesting point. And let me just follow up on that. He talked about the treatise that was written by these two Chinese colonels—you can find this online folks, it’s called unrestricted warfare. And what they do is they tell us exactly how they’re going to take over America, how they’re going to defeat us, how they’re going to subjugate us.

The thing about it is, there’s two other groups that have done exactly the same thing. And we haven’t paid attention to them, either. One of them is called “After the Ball.” Anybody ever read it? “After the Ball.” It’s the LGBT community telling us how they’re gonna take over America. And the other one is called “The Naked Communist.” It’s by the Marxist movement in America, how they’re going to take over America. I challenge every one of you that are here and especially those of you who are watching us online to read those books. Because they tell you how they’re going to take over this country.

For the record, Boykin is not telling the truth about “The Naked Communist,” which was not written by “the Marxist movement” but by W. Cleon Skousen, a far right-wing conspiracy theorist.

Lee read a list of “new words they’ve invented under this umbrella of woke,” including “inclusivity,” “indigenous people,” “intersectionality,” “gaslighting,” “gender binary,” and “systemic oppression.” He complained that “all of these ideologies are encroaching upon the workforce in the U.S. military.” And he claimed that those ideas run counter to “the core values of honor and integrity” that are taught at bootcamp and the military academies, making things harder for military officers:

And now what’s happening is, as this tsunami breaks upon their heads, and they’re trying to hold up these core values, they’re in a battle against, as the bishop said before, it’s against Satan himself. Because all of these things that fall—I mean, you can name them: critical race theory, the LGBT movement—they’re all tools of the devil. And every single one of them is trying to divide us into identity groups. And that’s the last thing you want in your military armed forces is different teams when they ought to be all one team.

First Liberty Institute’s Berry claimed that the vaccine mandate, “woke ideology,” and “extremism training” are eroding confidence in the military. He claimed that he is speaking with members of the military who aren’t sure whether it is worth fighting the vaccine mandate because they aren’t sure they want to stay in “a military that no longer has our best interests and the country’s best interests.”

Boykin warned that if the 70 percent of military members he said identify as Christian begins to erode due to vaccine mandates and “wokeism,” there will be a “talent exodus” and the U.S. would “wind up with a mercenary military.”

“How do we fix this?” Boykin asked. The 2024 election could be a pivot point, Martin responded, while warning that President Joe Biden could get a second term or “it becomes President Harris, God forbid.”

When the crowd groaned, Boykin joked, “You were doing OK until right then.” Martin responded, “Sir, I went to the Special Forces schoolhouse, someone ran it. And they taught us you have to plan for the worst case. And this is what we as a nation have to plan for and prepare for, and what are we going to do? This is the absolute worst that could happen? What do we do to avoid that? And what do we do if it does happen?”

Lee said that it is important to “breed into our officers, our upcoming officers” the idea “that it is service above self” and that they should be willing to sacrifice their careers if necessary. “Stop fearing your next promotion and start being willing to throw your stars on the table on principle and doing the right thing, because first and foremost, our military services exist to win the nation’s wars, not to be a petri dish for social experimentation.”

Berry said that First Liberty institute will defend vaccine refusers facing the possibility of dishonorable discharges. “We are tired of Dunkirk; we’re ready for Normandy,” he said.

Boykin joined Berry in criticizing Army recruiting commercials, which Boykin called “the most disgusting thing that I’ve seen as I reflect on my military career.” Boykin did not get into specifics, but presumably he was talking about a set of commercials meant to recruit from an increasingly diverse pool of young people that conservative activists have criticized as “too woke.” Berry said that the Chinese government is banning television portrayals of men as non-masculine, adding, “I’m not advocating this, I’m just using it as an example.” Boykin also railed against the possibility of women being drafted.

Lee promoted “Irresistible Revolution,” a book self-published this year by Space Force Lt. Col. Matthew Lohmeier which portrays discussions of racism and extremism in the military as part of a plan for “Marxist conquest” and the replacement of the U.S. government with a “communist dictatorship.” After the book came out, Lohmeier was stripped of his command. Panelists also praised Marine Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller, who publicly criticized military officials over the withdrawal from Afghanistan and who landed up in the brig after repeatedly calling for “revolution” on social media. At his court-martial scheduled tomorrow at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, Scheller reportedly plans “to plead guilty to several charges and seek a discharge that allows him to keep some military benefits.”

 

This article was originally published by Right Wing Watch and is republished here by permission.

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

America Is in a Spiritual War Against ‘Satan Liberal Evil Communist Socialist’ Democrats Says GOP House Candidate

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A GOP candidate for a U.S. House of Representatives seat from South Carolina is attacking Democrats as being a “Satan liberal evil communist socialist” party, and proclaiming America is “absolutely” in a spiritual war.

Pastor Mark Burns is a “fanatical Christian nationalist,” according to Right Wing Watch (tweet below) and a televangelist who was dubbed “Donald Trump’s Top Pastor.” Like the former President he is wielding his Twitter account like a sword.

He announced his run one week ago Wednesday:

Days later he was calling himself a fighter “bold enough to deal with the radical Marxist policies that’s destroying our country!”

There are no radical Marxist policies in the U.S.

After attacking “RINOs,” Burns told anti-vaxx conspiracy theorist and streaming talk show host Stew Peters Republicans have to stop letting the “Satan liberal evil communist socialist government called the Democrat Party overtake this amazing country we call the United States of America.”

In 2017 Burns was one of Roy Moore’s defenders, insisting the nine allegations of sexual assault, child sexual assault, attempted rape, and inappropriate behavior with teenaged girls were false.

“We’re letting these communists run our country by simply letting it happen,” Burns told Peters.

“We’ve been too quiet,” Burns claimed, falsely insisting that Democrats are a “weak minority of people.”

He also falsely insisted America “is a God nation. This is a Christian nation. This nation belongs to the great I Am, the King of kings, and the Lord of lords. This nation was founded on Judeo-Christian principles.”

In 2016, as NCRM reported, Burns admitted to “overstating” significant details of his biography, including that he serves in the Army Reserve, holds a bachelor’s degree and is working toward a master’s.

Watch, via Right Wing Watch:

 

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

‘Teaching Them How to Go to Hell’: NC Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson Calls Transgender Rights Movement ‘Demonic’

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North Carolina’s Christian nationalist Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson is under fire after Right Wing Watch posted a clip of him speaking Asbury Baptist Church in Seagrove, North Carolina,  ranting that Christians must take control of public schools because children are being abused by being taught “filth.”

“There’s no reason anybody anywhere in America should be telling any child about transgenderism, homosexuality, any of that filth,” Robinson said during his remarks in June.

In August, Robinson spoke at the Upper Room Church of God in Christ in Raleigh, North Carolina, a church that is run by Bishop Patrick Wooden, a vehemently anti-gay right-wing pastor who once claimed that gay men have to wear diapers because they routinely insert cellphones, baseball bats, and animals into their anuses.

Not surprisingly, Robinson felt so at home in Wooden’s church that he spent nearly five minutes ranting that the transgender rights movement is “demonic” and “full of the Antichrist spirit.”

“Here’s something else I’m not supposed to say: Ain’t but two genders,” Robinson declared. “You can go to the doctor and get cut up, you can go down to the dress shop and get made up, you can go down there and get drugged up, but at the end of the day, you are just a drugged-up, dressed-up, made-up, cut-up man or woman. You ain’t changed what God put in you, that DNA. You can’t transcend God’s creation; I don’t care how hard you try. The transgender movement in this country—if there’s a movement in this country that is demonic and that is full of the spirit of Antichrist, it is the transgender movement.”

“We don’t even need science to prove what gender you are,” he continued. “There’s two ways I can do this thing here. The simple way is to go around the corner here to the bathroom and you can drop your pants or whatever you’ve got on, and I can show you what you are. Or I can take a little blood at your arm and take it down here to the scientists. He can put in his little petri dish and look at it, ‘Oh, this is the DNA of a white male.’ Well, is there anything in between? ‘No, it’s the DNA of a white male.’ It don’t matter what you did down there at the therapy doctor and all that.”

“That being said now, you got the right to do whatever you want to do,” Robinson said. ‘We don’t live in a theocracy. You got the right to call yourself whatever you want to call yourself. If you want to call yourself a cocker spaniel, go ahead. You want to go to the dressmaker and say, ‘Make me a cocker spaniel suit that I can fit in. I’m gonna put it on, I’m gonna run around, bark all the time.’ Go ahead. You can run around here and be a cocker spaniel all day long, but I ain’t got to follow you in your delusion! When I see you, I ain’t gonna say, ‘There goes that cocker spaniel.’ I’m gonna say, ‘There goes that weirdo in the dog suit. That man thinks he’s a dog, but he’s not really a dog, he’s a man.’”

“It’s time for grown-ups and time for Christians to start standing up and being unafraid to tell the truth,” Robinson bellowed. “Come after me if you want to. I don’t care. You want my head? Here it is right here. Come on. Come get it. I don’t care because it’s time for us to stand up. Now, I’m not afraid to stand up tell the truth about that issue. They’re dragging our kids down into the pit of Hell trying to teach them that mess in our schools. Tell you like this: That ain’t got no place at no school. Two plus two don’t equal transgender; it equals four. We need to get back to teaching them how to read instead of teaching them how to go to Hell. Yeah, I said it, and I mean it.”

This article was originally published by Right Wing Watch and is republished here by permission.

 

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