Engaging the Issues: Dr. Ron Crews

Since the repeal of the, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, has anything changes regarding the religious liberty for our troops and chaplains?

On today’s episode of Engaging the Issues, Dr. Ron Crews – a 29-year veteran Chaplain – explains why he is concerned about the ability of our chaplains to effectively minister the Gospel within the military . . . and what you can do about it.

Click here to listen now.

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 Predictions of Military Experimentation are Hardly Exaggerated

By Tom Stark, 05/26/2012

army logoBefore the final repeal of the notorious Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT) policy put into place by the Clinton administration as a means of coping with homosexuals in the military, many among us predicted that doing so would open up a can of worms when it came to issues like “right of conscience” for military chaplains, sexual conduct disruptive to good discipline and order, etc.  We were scoffed at and ridiculed as bigots, Neanderthals, and the like.

But here we are post-repeal and many of our predictions have been realized.  Gary McCaleb writes on Townhall.com that while opponents were “mocked like Orville and Wilbur Wright” for protesting that chaplains would be faced with conflicts over redefining marriage on military installations, just such issues are now coming home to roost.

The House of Representatives attached amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (HR 4310) that would protect chaplains’ rights to refuse to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies and also protect them from adverse disciplinary or career repercussions from doing so.  Now, who could object to these simple statements of logic that fall wholly in line with our First Amendment rights to believe as we choose and be protected from government sanctions?  Apparently, President Obama does.

According to McCaleb,

“So far, the administration is defending its opposition to the language in H.R. 4310 by saying the legislation contains ‘unnecessary and ill-advised policies that would inhibit the ability of same-sex couples to marry or enter a recognized relationship under State law.’ ”

So much for “no repercussions.”   Many claimed that there would be no disruption – the military would “adapt.”  Apparently, this, too, has been a failure.  Bob Unruh, writing for wnd.com quotes statistics from a report by Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness,

“Among the details in the reports:  While, since 2006, 5 percent of the violent sexual assaults have been against men, recent reports now put that figure at 12 to 14 percent.”

[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.

Normalization of Homosexual Lifestyle Should Begin in Kindergarten!

by Nathan A. Cherry, 03/28/2011

Don't Ask Don't TellMartinsburg, WV – Leave it to California to put the cart before the horse and run with something that has not been completely approved for implementation. In a state where political and economic upheaval is at an all-time high you would think lawmakers would be trying to find something to unite citizens rather than further divide them, but then again, it is California.

In a post by Citizenlink this week it is reported that California has decided to begin teaching specifically on the contributions of gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and transsexuals in their social science courses. The article said:

“The California Senate Education Committee passed legislation Wednesday that would mandate public schools teach U.S. history, California history and social science with a deliberate emphasis on the roles and contributions of gay- and lesbian-identified individuals, as well as those of transsexuals and bisexuals.”

The California Family Institute’s director, Ron Prentice commented “It seems a bit like a quota system. It’s based less on the level of contribution and more on one’s sexual orientation.”

But the real concern, at least from my perspective, is how this will affect families with religious and moral objections to the homosexual lifestyle? Is this a sort of indoctrination of affirming the homosexual lifestyle and gay agenda? Will religious and conscience rights be respected for parents that do not want their children exposed to such teaching at a young age? Why do Kindergarteners and elementary age students need to know that a person was homosexual or otherwise?

It seems everyone from public schools to the military is trying to force feed homosexuality down the throats of every person regardless of religious, moral, or other objections. The deliberate ignoring of scientific data on reparation therapy, sexually transmitted diseases among the homosexual community and other red flags are equally troubling.

Just last week Mac pulled the Exodus International app from its app store after people complained. Yet, as was documented here, the app store has dozens of apps promoting and supporting the homosexual lifestyle. This double standard is twisted.

[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.

The Engaging Essentials

AMA and Abortion – Live Action explains the American Medical Association’s agenda in support of abortion.  Why is it that most “professional groups” (AMA, APA, ABA – or other organizations starting and ending in “A”) seem to be trending further and further away from the values of their members?

Family Facts – The Heritage Foundation has released a new website detailing loads of information (data, research, charts, graphs, etc.) on the family. Very, very cool site.

DADT Implementation Questions – The Center for Military Readiness has assembled a lengthy document of several issues that must be resolved if the military is, in fact, going to be able to repeal DADT as directed at the end of 2010. This revealing PDF is thought provoking to say the least. [Note: Link opens PDF.]

Reason for Optimism – Trevin Wax does a fine job explaining the Top 10 Reasons he is “optimistically pro-life.”

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.

Everything You Wanted to Know About DADT – And More

By Nathan A. Cherry, 12/28/2010

Don't Ask Don't Tell Martinsburg, WV – One of our goals here at the Family Policy Council of West Virginia is to make sure you are kept up to date on local, state, and national issues taking place. Some of those issues receive a great deal of coverage, and others, not so much.

One such issue we have been following very closely is the push to repeal the military “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” ban on open homosexuality. The repeal effort became a reality this week as Congress narrowly voted to repeal the longstanding ban. Maybe you did not follow the coverage as closely as we did and want to know what all the hoopla is about. Or perhaps you are interested in the long-term implications of repealing the ban.

Below you will find several articles from a number of respectable sources. The information in them will bring you up to date on what has happened and even some speculation on what may or may not happen in the future. I hope these articles serve to keep you informed on this key issue.

Christian Groups React to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal – Reactions by various organizations on the decision to repeal the DADT policy and their plans to appeal the decision.

 ’Don’t Ask’ repeal raises concerns for chaplains – An article dealing with chaplains in the military and how repealing the ban will affect their work and ministries.

[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.

GOP – Not Sen. Manchin – to Blame for Normalization of Homosexual Conduct in the Military

In who do you trust? Not these guys! (Photo credit: Bill Clark/Roll Call).

Over the weekend, after 2 or 3 failed attempts this year, the U.S. Senate finally managed to repeal the so-called, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy.  After the President signs it, as we expect he will this week, the 200+ year tradition for our military that finds homosexual conduct incompatible with military service will end.  How that affects the morale, good order, and religious liberty of our troops will be watched with prayerful eyes.

Incidentally, I find it interesting that today the Washington Post today posts a timeline of DADT.  Those calling for repeal have argued that this has been “a 17 year ban,” but, as the WaPo points out, it dates back at least to 1950 and Truman’s codification of the UCMJ.  It actually goes back to the time of George Washington, but who’s counting.

On Saturday, Politico published a story that reported that one of the Senate’s newest members was absent from the historic vote.  It quoted Brian Walsh, spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee (the NRSC – the political arm of the GOP for US Senate candidates) as saying:

“Perhaps in Joe Manchin’s world today was a win-win, not only was he able to skip work and party, but he was also able to avoid voting on two very sensitive political issues.  For a Senator who has only been on the job a few weeks, Manchin's absence today, and the apparent lack of seriousness with which he takes the job he was elected to do, speaks volumes,” said Walsh in a statement.

via Manchin’s double dodge – David Catanese – POLITICO.com.

Locally, the reactions I’ve seen on Twitter and Facebook, as well as progressive and conservative blogs, have been quite critical of Manchin.  I’ve seen him called everything from, “No Show Joe” to . . . well, worse names.  Online comments from his left have promised never to vote for him again and some to even pledge an active campaign against him.  Those to his political right have not lost much time in taking advantage of the situation either, saying things similar to what Walsh said above.

But, here’s the deal: the DADT repeal passed 65-31 in the U.S. Senate.  Of that, 8 – EIGHT – GOP Senators voted in favor of repeal.  Frankly, Manchin’s family obligations gave him convenient political cover, but it was an effective vote against repeal – which is more than can be said 1/5th of the republicans in the U.S. Senate!

Moreover, Manchin’s lack of presence is (in part) a testament to the thousands of calls, emails, and letters that our constituents sent, holding him accountable to their wishes.  He was trapped between a party bent on normalizing homosexual behavior at all costs and a conservative constituency that made their wishes very clearly known to him ahead of the vote.

Sens. Burr, Ensign, Collins, Snowe, Murkowski, Brown, Voinovich, and Kirk – all republicans – suggested to voters that they agreed with the 2008 National GOP Platform which states:

To protect our servicemen and women and ensure that America’s Armed Forces remain the best in the world, we affirm the timelessness of those values, the benefits of traditional military culture, and the incompatibility of homosexuality with military service. [emphasis added]

Do you realize that if these eight republicans had remained faithful to the platform that they told their constituents they support, the vote would have been 57-39?  The vote would have failed.

So, do me a favor: lay off Manchin.

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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.

Who is the Harbinger of Our Culture? Hopefully Not Canada

Should we change to be like Canada? (Photo credit: Brian J. Gavniloff/Postmedia News)

Ok, for those of you who just clicked over here to find out what the word, “harbinger” means, click here.  If you want to know why I chose that word for this blog post, keep reading.

Canada is often one of the worldwide armies held up by same-sex activists as a fighting force that has an evolved understanding of morality, one that has successfully – and without problem – adjusted to the enlightened world of tolerance.  Ergo, they argue, the United States ought to reject the archaic, “puritanical fundamentalism” (seriously, that’s what they say), that keeps inequitable policies like the so-called, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in place.

If that is one of the armies deserving of attention, then we should look more closely at what is developing beyond our northern border, eh? (Get it?)

Oh, here’s a headline that will get your attention, “Dress rules established for transsexuals in the military.”  Even while your mind wonders how much time it took the editors to put that headline together, you realize, as you read the story, that it is less about “equality” or repealing DADT (though it is) and more about a fundamental misunderstanding of the American form of government.

Here’s how the story opens:

As U.S. politicians continue to debate whether to let gays serve openly in the American military, the Canadian Forces have issued a new policy detailing how the organization should accommodate transsexual and transvestite troops specifically. Soldiers, sailors and air force personnel who change their sex or sexual identity have a right to privacy and respect around that decision, but must conform to the dress code of their “target” gender, says the supplementary chapter of a military administration manual.

A gay-rights advocate hailed development of the guidelines as a progressive approach to people whose gender issues can trigger life-threatening psychological troubles.

Cherie MacLeod, executive director of PFLAG Canada, a sexual orientation-related support group, said she has helped a number of Forces members undergoing sex changes, surgery the military now funds.

“This is an important step towards recognizing a community that has always struggled for equal rights and basic human protection,” said Ms. MacLeod. “When government becomes more inclusive, over time, society will follow.”

via Dress rules established for transsexuals in military.

Now, let me sum up: the Canadian military – who has fully embraced open homosexual conduct in their military – has issued a directive concerning individuals who will convince a psychologist to write a note to a surgeon that the person is trapped in the wrong body and that surgeon is to mutilate that individual’s genitals to “correct” what must amount to a birth defect.

That directive is this: for those “transitioning” from one gender to another, you need to wear the uniform of the final destination.  For men who will be . . . uh . . . emasculating themselves, you need to wear the female uniform.  For women who will be, “rearranging parts,” you need to wear the male uniform.

As a quick and ironic aside, why are we still using these outdated and antiquated notions of gender?  Aren’t these societally generated labels imposed on us by . . . puritanical fundamentalists?

[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.

Sen Manchin Gets Booed in DC – We Applaud in WV

By Nathan A. Cherry, 12/13/2010

 Martinsburg, WV – I want to pass this story along to you for a couple of reasons; and I urge you to read it and click the link for more on this story.

First, I wanted to thank Sen. Manchin – and I hope you will too – for his vote against the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Whether he believes it should not be repealed remains to be seen, but, for now, he is unwilling to compromise our military be supporting open homosexuality. For this I thank Sen. Manchin and I urge him to continue to stand with our military personnel and the majority of American citizens that believe repealing DADT would hurt our military.

Second, I wanted to thank Sen. Manchin for wanting to hear from his constituents. In all the coverage of this issue I have not heard one senator say that he/she would like to hear from their constituents on the issue before they vote. But Sen. Manchin has openly said that he desires to hear from us, the people of his state, before he is willing to support repeal of DADT.

That means we have every opportunity right now to let Sen. Manchin know exactly where we as West Virginians stand on this issue. It is no secret that the majority of West Virginians are opposed to same-sex marriage, and, so far, is equally opposed to repealing DADT (according to the FPCWV recent phone polling).

I also want to ask you to take a minute, just one minute to contact Sen. Manchin and let him know where you stand. He wants to hear from you – which is rare these days for a Senator – so let’s make sure he does indeed hear from us. (Click here to go to Sen. Mancin’s contact form, or click here to read the FPCWV thank-you for Sen. Manchin’s vote against the repeal of DADT)

Joe Manchin booed over ‘Don’t ask’ vote

Gay-rights activists on Friday booed the mere mention of newly sworn in Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), the only Democrat to join Republicans in blocking a repeal of the Pentagon’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.
At a Capitol Hill rally, two West Virginia natives took to the stage and condemned Manchin’s vote on Thursday, issuing veiled threats that they would work against his 2012 reelection if he did not reverse course.

[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.

Give Your Thanks to Sen. Manchin

We teach our children to say “please” and “thank you,” but when it comes to our elected officials, we expect their action without being polite ourselves.

Scripture reminds us in I Thessalonians 5:16-18 to, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus.”

I doubt Paul had in mind thanking our lawmakers after we lobbied them when he wrote those words, but I also do not think it offends Scripture to conclude we are to be grateful – especially for our leaders.

Yesterday, Sen. Manchin was the only member of his party to vote against normalizing homosexual behavior in the military.  We believe he was motivated, in large measure, because over 1,800 of you called and asked him (hopefully with a “please” in your request) to vote “no” on the measure.

For now, Sen. Manchin heard your concerns and represented you well.  Tomorrow, he may not represent your opinion.  Regardless of the circumstance, you and I are called to give thanks.

In our press release following the vote yesterday, I conveyed our public appreciation for Sen.Manchin’s vote.  This morning, I have faxed Sen. Manchin a letter conveying my personal thanks and will follow that fax with a handwritten note and a phone call as well.  (And, for the record, had he voted the other way yesterday, I still would have said thanks – “all circumstances” means “all circumstances.”)

Today, I am asking you to take just 2 minutes to tell Sen. Manchin thanks. Here are the 3 ways you can express your thanks:

  1. Call Sen. Manchin at 202-224-3954 and say, “Thank you, Sen. Manchin for placing religious liberty and national security above the normalization of homosexual behavior in the military.”
  2. Submit your thanks over the Internet by going to Sen. Manchin’s website.  Write him a note that says, “I am grateful that you voted against normalizing homosexual behavior in the military and in favor of protecting the religious liberty of our troops.”
  3. Send Sen. Manchin a handwritten note that conveys your thanks.  Address you letter to, “The Hon. Joe Manchin, III, 311 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510.” Please note: letters typically take 10-14 days to deliver to a Senator due to security screenings.

You should know that same-sex activists are note being quite as polite.  One comment on theirwebsite said, “I emailed Sen. Manchin as I am very angry and disappointed in his vote today.”  Another said, “[I am] embarrassed to be a West Virginian today.  [I] told him so.”

Be polite.  Tell Sen. Manchin you appreciate his vote – and his service as your U.S. Senator.

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.

PRESS RELEASE: FPCWV Thanks Sen. Manchin for Vote Against Open Homosexual Behavior, Abortion Clinics in Military

West Virginia’s newest U.S. Senator only member to break with his party in defense of the family, preborn.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Late Thursday, the United States Senate rejected a measure (57-40) that would have normalized homosexual behavior in the military and allowed taxpayer dollars to be used to fund abortion-on-demand on military bases.  The only member of the U.S. Senate to break with his party was Sen. Joe Manchin.

“We are grateful that Sen. Manchin has not allowed religious liberty, free speech, and national security to take a back seat to the homosexual agenda in this country,” said Jeremy Dys, president and general counsel of the Family Policy Council of West Virginia (FPCWV).  “Sen. Manchin deserves credit and our thanks for this, as well as for his boldness to be the only member of his party to stand up for the next generation of our fighting forces and against the pro-abortion leadership of the U.S. Senate.”

The FPCWV generated more than 1,800 phone calls from its core constituents to Sen. Manchin’s office, each expressing their opposition to normalizing homosexual behavior in the military.  Over 85% of the 10,000 homes the FPCWV called this week opposed repealing the so-called, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

The Family Policy Council of West Virginia is a servant organization advocating for policies that embrace the sanctity of human life, enrich marriage, and safeguard religious freedom.

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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.