Bullied Into Submission by the Board of Education

You may have noticed that you have not heard a lot out of me here in the last 50 days. That is because I have been, almost daily, occupied with faithfully representing you and your family at the West Virginia Capitol.

Particularly, we have been working to pass a divorce reform measure and to work on an issue that would bring the State’s laws on bullying back into compliance with the First Amendment. We are awaiting the outcome of the former, but are hopeful that it will pass.

Sadly, however, I learned today that our efforts to make sure the State’s laws on bullying apply equally and fairly to everyone have been for naught.

Things seemed on track. The bill unanimously passed the Senate Committee on Education and, after a few weeks of intense negotiations, it passed the Senate Judiciary Committee. On Monday of this week, it was scheduled to be read on the first of three days before it could pass.

But, Senate leadership – at the very last minute – yanked the bill from the agenda and parked it in a place in which it would die a slow death.

This morning, it finally succumbed to that fatal blow. The question you ought to ask is not why it died (that’s obvious, or it will quickly become so). The appropriate question is, “Who killed it?”

We understand that we have the ACLU, Fairness WV, the WVEA, WVAFT, and the WV Board of Education each holding a smoking gun over SB446′s corpse.

The first two are obvious. They seem to be against whatever we stand for, mainly because we stand for it. They don’t seem to need another reason, or even a rational one. In fact, I challenged their lobbyist to tell me what, under the Constitution, made the opposed to our bill. His only response was, “The ACLU and Fairness WV have retained me to kill the bill.” No negotiation, no discussion, no recognition that our current law offends the First Amendment. They just wanted it dead.

As for the teacher unions, well, they seem to pal around the Capitol with the ACLU and their cronies. They lobby together and seem to be of one mind on this and many other issues that would strengthen the family and encourage greater religious freedom. That is not to say that their membership agrees with this tactic or even that they don’t do some good work (I’m sure they manage to some of the time at least); it’s just an observation that I very often see the leadership of the teacher unions working in tandem with several liberal activist groups (sometimes even including the abortion industry).

But, perhaps you are surprised by the Board of Education being on that list. Don’t be. I should have listed them first. Despite my repeated attempts to offer concessions and discuss what changes they would like to see to the bill, they simply dug their heels in the ground, demanded their concerns be mollified, and pouted when they didn’t get what they wanted. I’m not exaggerating! The Board was by far the biggest obstacle to this bill.

To top it all off, it is my understanding – confirmed by several sources – that one of the unelected members of the Board of Education sent a letter to Senate leadership asking that the bill be killed.

It’s hard to compete with such a cadre of expensive lobbyists and cronyism.

[Read more...]

About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

Are the Food Police Coming to Your Childs School?

By Tom Stark, 02/29/2012

school lunchParkersburg, WV – On February 14, the Carolina Journal reported , that on January 30, a pre-K student at the West Hoke Elementary School in Raeford, NC, had her home-packed lunch “inspected” by an unidentified government representative.  It is unclear just which government entity employed this inspector.   As outrageous as that may sound, one of the federal provisions tacked onto funding provided to schools across the country requires all lunches consumed in schools participating in the program meet federal nutritional guidelines.

Apparently, without our being aware, the rights of parents are under assault again in the form of federal judgment of what is or is not suitable for our children to eat while they attend classes in a public school.  No longer can a parent decide what their children eat.  Instead the turkey and cheese sandwich, banana, potato chips, and apple juice lunch was declared inadequate – at least according to the inspector whose identity is being dodged by all concerned.

Instead, the child was provided with three chicken nuggets and some other undisclosed items from the school cafeteria that the child refused to eat.  So instead of the parent-provided and seemingly adequate lunch that was taken away from the child, she wound up eating three chicken nuggets for lunch.  Wow!  How nutritious!   According to the mom, her daughter is very picky about vegetables and therefore she does not push the issue in the lunch sent to school with her but chose, rather to make sure she ate her veggies at home where she was supervised while eating.  That also seems sensible, even wise.

Quoting the original article:

The Division of Child Development and Early Education at the Department of Health and Human Services requires all lunches served in pre-kindergarten programs — including in-home day care centers — to meet USDA guidelines. That means lunches must consist of one serving of meat, one serving of milk, one serving of grain, and two servings of fruit or vegetables, even if the lunches are brought from home.

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Rape Victim: Pro-Abortion Ultrasound Comparison Offensive

by Kelly Clinger, 02/28/2012

Atlanta, GA - Planned Parenthood has now said that the new proposed Virginia Ultrasound Law is akin to rape. I’m sorry, what? I am so upset by this. I just want to cry.

A medical procedure that is done by a nurse in a clinic is the same thing as what that man did to me in a hotel room so many years ago? Most likely no one is forcing you to have an abortion. However, 13 years ago I didn’t have a say in whether or not I wanted to have sex. I was forced

If this law passes, Virginian women will know that if they choose to have abortion they will have to have an ultrasound beforehand, and saying that this is anything like rape is completely ridiculous.

If you had fibroids or cysts, the doctor would want to do an ultrasound so he/she can know exactly what they are dealing with. Will you then accuse that doctor of violating you? Will you cry “rape”?

I mean can we just call a spade a spade? Planned Parenthood doesn’t want you to have an ultrasound because they don’t want you to see the child you are about to kill. They don’t want you to see the heartbeat you are about to stop. They know that if you see your baby there is a huge chance you will change your mind, and they need your money.

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Another Connection Between Planned Parenthood and the Girl Scouts

by Nathan A. Cherry, 02/28/2012

Planned Parenthood Girls ScoutsMartinsburg, WV – The video below certainly has been making the rounds on the Internet and new outlets. Many people are outraged that Indiana State Rep. Bob Morris would make such claims about the Girl Scouts and Planned Parenthood. He’s been called a lot of names and certainly much hate has been thrown his way for his comments. But is he wrong?

Rep. Morris wrote a letter to fellow colleagues explaining his concerns in which he stated:

“…abundant evidence proves that the agenda of Planned Parenthood includes sexualizing young girls through the Girl Scouts, which is quickly becoming a tactical arm of Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood instructional series and pamphlets are part of the core curriculum at GSA training seminars. Denver Auxiliary Bishop James D. Conley of Denver last year warned parents that “membership in the Girl Scouts could carry the danger of making their daughters more receptive to the pro-abortion agenda.”

No sooner had Rep. Morris made these comments did he come under attack for mischaracterizing the Girl Scouts and spreading misinformation about them; most vehemently they deny any association with Planned Parenthood. But it’s hard for the Girl Scouts to deny any partnership with Planned Parenthood when Girl Scout CEO Kathy Cloninger appeared on national television admitting that Girl Scout troops do indeed partner with Planned Parenthood.

What is most intriguing about the video below is the comments by Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Chief Operating Officer Cathy Ritchie. Ritchie says in the video that there is “no relationship” between Girl Scouts of Indiana and Planned Parenthood; that there never has been and never will be a relationship between the two groups.

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Engaging the Issues: Judy Sloane


Judy Sloane is the executive director of Labor of Love Ministries, a pregnancy care center in Morgantown, WV.  For most of her adult life, Judy has been counseling young women to choose life over abortion, caring for them during their pregnancy, and loving their children once born.

But there is more to it than that.  Judy is perhaps most passionate about women who are recovering from abortion, or who we sometimes call, “post-abortive women.”

There is a reason for that.  On Sanctity of Human Life Sunday this past January, Judy shared her story of abuse, abortion, and finding healing in the Grace of Christ through the outstretched arms of a faithful church.  We have the privilege of sharing that testimony with you on today’s Engaging the Issues.

You can listen to it at FamilyPolicyWV.com or by clicking on the player below.

 


Don’t forget to download this week’s edition of Engaging the Issues @Home for a time of discussion and prayer about this important topic of life, abortion, and the church.

About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

The Picture Facebook Doesn’t Want You to See

Warning: The image in this article is of a graphic nature.
by Nathan A. Cherry, 02/24/2012

Martinsburg, WV – You have probably read an article or watched something about the recent Facebook pro-life cover up in the last week. It has certainly made serious waves across the nation as everyone tries to figure out why Facebook would remove a pro-life image while allowing instructions on how to perform a “self-abortion” to remain.

I won’t pretend to know what goes through the mind of a social media mogul when such decisions are made, but I do know that trampling freedom of speech and pro-life views is not a good thing.

Here’s a recap of what happened. A woman posted instructions on how to perform a “self-abortion” at home using misoprostol. Now, you should know that misoprostol is a drug only a pharmacist can administer but the woman giving these instructions advises young girls to lie to the pharmacist (say they are for your grandmother with arthritis) in order to obtain the medication. Then, after instructing how to use the drugs in order to complete an “at home abortion,” the woman says that if a trip to the doctor is necessary that girls should lie once again and say they had a miscarriage.

So, in short, this woman is encouraging young girls to lie to a pharmacist to obtain drugs (something that is against the law), and then lie to a doctor if need be once they have caused an abortion (also against the law). And these instructions were posted on Facebook and allowed to stay posted even though they contain obvious illegal and dangerous actions.

But do you know what Facebook did not allow to stay posted? This picture:
[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Get an Abortion from a Vending Machine!?

By Tom Stark, 02/25/2012

Vending machine for Plan B abortion pillParkersburg, WV – MSNBC has exposed the latest chapter in the breakdown of moral and parental authority over the youth of our country by those who would promote the agenda of unlimited and unfettered access to any method available for the termination of pregnancy and easy ability to participate in sexual activity without consequence or limits.

A small public institution of “higher learning” known as Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania has taken the meaning of “access” to the next level – by installing a vending machine available to all students that dispenses the so-called “Plan B” or morning after contraceptive pill.  Yep, just insert $25 and stop that pregnancy in its tracks!  The machine also conveniently dispenses condoms, pregnancy tests, and decongestants (where’d they come from?).

Even the liberal bastion of MSNBC seems to take exception to the idea of dispensing what can only be called a serious drug without the benefit of consultation with a pharmacist or medical professional before dispensing it to women as young as seventeen.  In the typical pharmacy, Plan B is kept behind the counter where an employee must verify the age of the purchaser since federal law requires the buyer be seventeen or older to obtain Plan B without a prescription.

Alexandra Stern, a professor of the history of medicine at the University of Michigan states:

“Perhaps it is personalized medicine taken too far,” she said. “It’s part of the general trend that drugs are available for consumers without interface with a pharmacist or doctors. This trend has serious pitfalls.”

That is certainly an understatement.  The college administration installed the machine about two years ago, apparently just days after the pill became available without a prescription, but claims to have checked and confirmed that there were no students enrolled at Shippensburg College that were under the age of  seventeen.   Small comfort?

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Pray for Marriage on Sunday

by Nathan A. Cherry, 02/24/2012

flag and BibleMartinsburg, WV – This is a call to pray. Earlier in the week I told you about this call to prayer taking place on Sunday, February 26th for marriages in America, now I am reiterating this call and asking you, your small group, your Bible study, your church, and your family to take part in this time of prayer for marriage.

This call comes from the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) on the heels of the decision against marriage in California as a result of the Prop 8 ruling. In an email to allied attorneys this week ADF wrote:

“As I am sure you are aware, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued its ruling in Perry v. Brown, the federal challenge to California’s marriage protection amendment.  To the surprise of none of us here at the Alliance Defense Fund, Judge Stephen Reinhardt, the most overturned federal appeals judge in America, wrote an opinion striking down the expressed will of over 7 million Californians who voted to define marriage as only the union of one man and one woman.

“Of course, this case is far from over.  This is one setback in a struggle which we will tirelessly fight – all the way to the United States Supreme Court, if necessary.

“The future for marriage, both in California and the nation, is far from decided by the events at the Ninth Circuit, and what is occurring in California is just another battle in the ongoing war over marriage.  Nevertheless, the need for prayer has never been more urgent, for without Christ we can do nothing (John 15:5).

“We are encouraging this Sunday, February 26th to be a day for all believers, to pray for marriage – that marriages across our land will be strengthened, and that God’s design for marriage be upheld and honored.  The document here is a prayer guide that we would encourage you to use, and pass along to others to inform them about this special day.”

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

100,000 Engaging Clicks

Today, this blog reached a milestone: 100,000 hits.

Some blogs reach that level in a single day, but they aren’t in West Virginia and they don’t exclusively cover the issues of life, marriage, and religious freedom as they apply to the families in West Virginia. In short, this is the most widely-read, pro-faimily blog in the state. You read things here you cannot read anywhere else in the state.

Thanks for making us the largest conservative blog in the state!

My thanks also to Nathan Cherry for his excellent leadership on this blog. He has come from a periodic blogger with us to the man primarily responsible for content and editorial control. Thanks, Nathan. Thanks also to Tom Stark who, more recently, has been doing a fine job of creating content and increasing readership.

We have some great things in store for you in the coming months. Keep coming back!

 

About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

Obama Continues Agenda Against Unborn and Religious Freedom

by Nathan A. Cherry, 02/23/2012

Obama in white jacketMartinsburg, WV – President Obama seems to be an expert on the Constitution. I’ve never seen a president that was so skilled in what the Constitution said that he was able to simultaneously trample our founding documents and the liberties therein, and anger a majority of Americans all at the same time. Yet that is exactly what continues to happen.

From Obamacare to the new contraception mandate Obama seems keenly skilled at finding ways to trample rights and anger those with religious and conscience objections to abortion. Because let’s face it, both of those bills contain broad measures in them that violate the religious convictions and consciences of a majority of Americans.

Sure, the president promised that no federal money would be used to pay for abortions (that must’ve really confused Planned Parenthood since they get millions in federal money for abortions). And Obama even signed an “executive order” to make sure of this. All that was just clever politi-speech to get the bill passed. Quoting ADF Senior Counsel Steven Aden, WND.com explains:

“No one should be forced to violate their conscience by paying for abortions, but that’s precisely what Obamacare does…Obamacare requires that employees enrolled in certain health plans pay a separate insurance premium specifically to pay for other people’s elective abortions and offers no opt-out for religious or moral reasons. Such a mandate cannot survive constitutional scrutiny…The drafters of the Act sought to include, for the first time in our nation’s history, health plans that cover elective abortion within the government-subsidized insurance exchanges…Due to the public uproar, the drafters devised a scheme to avoid the direct federal funding of abortion. This goal of avoiding the use of tax-payer subsidies for abortion coverage was unfortunately achieved by a means that violates the First Amendment; namely, by compelling the taxpayer to personally pay a separate abortion premium.”

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.