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Items filtered by date: May 2017

Distinguished legal experts Erwin ChemerinskyFrederick Lawrence, and Slate’s Dahlia Lithwick, examine the Supreme Court’s 2016-17 session.

 

Lauren Jones, assistant director of legal affairs at the Anti-Defamation League, moderates.

Seating for the live program in Kirby Auditorium is at capacity. However, tickets are available for simulcast in the John C. Bogle Chairman’s Room. Click here to see standby line information.

 

If you are interested in covering this program or need additional information, please feel free to contact Merissa V. Blum: 

Communications Manager National Constitution Center, 525 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106  at: 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The program will also be streamed live at constitutioncenter.org/live

Published in Business
 
Dear Doctor: My mother is suffering from dementia and is increasingly difficult, but I'd hate for her to be given antipsychotics. Isn't there anything else that could be done to keep her calm?
 
Dear Reader: My heart goes out to you and your family. Dementia is one of the most difficult diseases to deal with -- for both patients and their loved ones. The loss of memory and the inability to incorporate new information is a struggle for many elderly patients. Some are able to cope with the loss of memory, but for others, the chaos of a poorly interpreted world causes agitation, irritability and anger. 
 
Patients often scream about problems that aren't even part of their present reality -- leaving family members and health care staff struggling to manage their seemingly irrational agitation. Nursing homes in particular often request some form of treatment, whether it be restraints or medication, to calm these patients and to protect their employees.
 
Doctors often prescribe benzodiazepines or antipsychotic medications for such cases, but, of course, they have side effects. Most notably, they sedate patients to such an extent that their perception of reality is further altered. Further, antipsychotic medication has been linked to an increased risk of stroke and death. 
 
There may be a better way. Many nursing facilities are now implementing a new program called Oasis. This program assesses both the biologic and psychological needs of the patient, shifting the emphasis away from a person's disabilities and focusing on his or her personhood. Early results are promising.
 
A 2017 study assessed the implementation of Oasis in 93 Massachusetts nursing homes, during which program coordinators and two to three staff members were trained in how to communicate with people suffering from memory impairment. These caregivers then helped train others within the nursing facility. Implementation of the Oasis program was verified by staff completion of webinars, trainer support meetings and training modules.
 
In comparing those facilities to 831 nursing facilities in New York and Massachusetts that didn't implement the program, researchers found that the use of antipsychotic medications dropped by 22.3 percent in the Oasis facilities, compared to a 17.2 percent drop in non-Oasis facilities.  
 
Note that the drop in antipsychotic use appeared to be largely related to national trends, meaning that due to the awareness of side effects, practitioners overall are prescribing fewer antipsychotic medications to nursing home patients with dementia. That said, the Oasis program did show an additional benefit, supporting the idea that better training of staff can reduce some of the behavioral disturbances seen in nursing homes.
 
Another option for agitated patients is the use of antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs. These drugs -- the best studied in this respect is citalopram -- can be comparable in efficacy to antipsychotic medications, but without the significant side effects.
 
Finally, exercise, music and pet therapy also play a role in decreasing the agitation seen in those with dementia. All of these are worth exploring as you seek to maximize your mother's quality of life.
 
Robert Ashley, M.D.
Published in Lifestyle
 
As politicians, especially those eyeing a new political office, are apt to do, Gov. Rick Scott on Monday made a big Northwest Florida tadoo of re-signing a Triumph Gulf Coast bill he'd officially inked into law on Friday.
 
Surrounded by smiling business people and local and state politicians, Scott spoke glowingly at stops in Pensacola and Panama City of opportunities afforded the Panhandle by an infusion of $1.5 billion secured through a legal settlement with BP following 2010?s disastrous Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
 
"If we spend these dollars well, we're going to grow this economy," Scott told those gathered in Pensacola for the faux signing there. 
 
Scott's right, and now that we're done with the theatrics, as he so likes to say, let's get to work.
 
The first infusion of BP funds, $300 million that arrived at the state treasury last year, is even now making its way toward the Triumph Gulf Coast Trust Fund and will be appropriated by a newly incorporated seven-member Triumph Gulf Coast Board of Directors for economic development projects.
 
Those projects will be "generational" in scope, according to Allan Bense, the former state House Speaker who will serve as the Triumph board's first chairman. Bense said he doesn't envision doling out funds for boat ramps or gun ranges.
 
One provision of the bill provides 5 percent, or $15 million, of the total $300 million to be divvied up for spending by each of the funded counties; Okaloosa, Walton, Santa Rosa, Bay, Escambia Wakulla, Franklin and Gulf. County commissioners in each county will decide which projects to present to the Triumph board to be approved for that 40 percent of the total allocation.
 
County-sponsored projects could include things like reducing taxes, education and workforce development projects, incentives to boost tourism or infrastructure improvements. They will not include dollars put out as incentives to lure companies to the area or encourage existing business expansion.
 
The other 60 percent of the money will be available to fund independent projects.
 
While there was a lot of time to worry during the session about the fate of the Triumph Gulf Coast bill, the document ultimately signed into law "simply fulfills," a plan six years in the making, said former state Sen. Don Gaetz, who authored two key early bills that helped create the skeleton plan fleshed out by this year's legislation.
 
In 2011, Gaetz convinced fellow lawmakers to go along with legislation that would secure 75 percent of all Florida BP settlement dollars for the eight Northwest Florida counties disproportionately impacted by the Deepwater Horizon spill.
 
In 2012-13, the Oil Spill Economic Development Act, sponsored by then-Senate President Gaetz, made the Triumph Gulf Coast Board the ultimate arbiter of project spending. Those two key elements weathered this year's sometimes tumultuous legislative session, and the threat of lawmakers from other parts of the state attempting to hijack some or all of the dollars due the Panhandle dimmed as time went on.
 
The talking is over and now it's time for the doing. Let's hope the Triumph Gulf Coast bill can keep its promises.
Published in Lee County & Florida
Monday, 26 June 2017 09:13

FED Up With Elder Abuse

 
“The Federal Reserve can continue to print more money, but cities and states can’t.” – Rob Liner
 
The central bank has crushed the interest rates seniors have relied on for centuries to supplement their incomes and live lives that are meaningful and independent. After slaving in factories, fighting wars for our country and preserving democracy around the globe, the Fed has ruthlessly cut off the income of many of our greatest contributors to democracy and the free world:  
 
“This generation made the sacrifices and paid ahead, so our country could remain free and libertarian.”  -Al Collins
 
Although America elected a capitalist leader, so far the Federal Reserve has kept interest rates at sub-zero. Capitalists foolishly felt the Fed would raise them if a conservative was elected, but they were swindled again. They felt they’d stop printing $5 billion a day to stimulate a factitiously contrived housing recovery. Barack Obama’s friends at the Fed made his recovery look real yet it was as phony as a $3 bill! This ghoulish Fed stuck future Americans with a debt they’ll never pay off. This was done to finance an illusion of “non-ready-shovel-ready-jobs” since the housing market could perpetrate the phantasm of a recovery to disguise his failures. Now, taxpayers are footing the bill for this hoax the rest of their lives.
 
“Blessed are the young for they shall inherit the national debt.” 
-Herbert Hoover
 
From the time this “Monster of Jekyll Island” was first created by JP Morgan and his gang of thugs, it has become the most impudent scam in economic history. Facts speak for themselves! It caused wars, boom-bust cycles, inflation, depression and, once in a blue moon, prosperity. The Fed was not a brainchild the government arbitrarily conjured up to watch over our money supply. It was a tool of a cabal of totalitarian bureaucrats who have helped shape the denigration of the 20th and 21st centuries. Developed in reaction to a catastrophic financial panic in 1907, a few independent wealthy plutocrats met in secret meetings with the vile “Mr. Hyde” on Jekyll Island, and adjured a plan with the blessings of Congress, to set the Central Bankers of the world on fire!
 
“The central bank nearly wrecked the world economy and has created one calamity after another.”                  -Jeff Tucker
 
It took these tycoons nine days to invent the beastly Federal Reserve. The motive behind this devil was more than guarding our money supply. They weren’t trying to solve an economic problem; but a political worriment. The U.S. didn’t need a new central bank; they had one in Morgan. He was the aphoristic lynchpin of Wall Street who bankers turned to when trouble arose. He was spirited, powerful and vain with an apostolic ability to persuade anyone to do anything. The economic future of the world’s greatest power was subservient to his wealth and his inflated ego. When these henchmen left Jekyll, they had taken control of all U.S. money. They have been playing Russian Roulette with it since then.
 
“He who controls the money supply of a nation controls the nation.”                 – James Garfield
 
The Fed has proven they can screw up a junkyard without ever trying. Their hidden agenda when Obama reigned was to allow him to sky-rocket our national debt by reducing the interest rates to lower our borrowing costs. That raised the national debt higher than the Goodyear blimp flies on Super Bowl Sunday! And this activist Fed didn’t care about the harm they were doing, since elders will be gone when the economic tsunami hits! Because liberal progressivism has influenced every government institution in America, they have chosen sides. And don’t expect them to change now. They will remain there until it benefits them to sell out to the other guys. This nightmare is alive and well.
 
“Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes its laws.        – Mayer Rothschild
 
During Obama’s tenure, the era of virtual-nothing interest rates was devastating to senior citizens. It was a federal offense: “The Fed Elder Abuse Act.” You’d think now that we have a 70-year-old head of the Fed, Janet Yellen, she’d have sympathy for seniors struggling to survive? But that’s a pipe dream. When you pay someone $199,700 a year who is not concerned about maintaining a house, paying rent, buying groceries, health insurance, and fuel, why worry about others? She obviously agrees with Marie Antoinette when she told the peasants, “Let them eat cake.” And that is Federal Elder Abuse in its quintessence.
 
“Elder abuse is a slap in the face of all morality.”
– Ellen Waters
 
The Fed has turned its back on reality. From our first colonies, we have had an investment balance that was the adrenal gland of our economy. People put money in stockings, buried it in cans, kept it with trusted store keepers and later deposited it in our 1st post offices before we had banks. They found innovative ways to stash their money for a time when it was needed. America was built by savers who over-saved and under-consumed so they could survive with a well-earned retirement. It was over-saving that made America financially and economically healthy. Now seniors must say:
 
“I learned to seek my happiness by limiting my desires, and I have remained content.”  -Jay Strong
 
The Fed’s blitzkrieg against the elderly is more abusive than anyone will admit. The banks used to give seniors a “living-interest rate” on their savings and trusted them to reinvest their money. This gave them both a good return on their investment, which was healthy. Now that has gone the way of the corset, the infamous Chevy Corvair, and the Dick Clark Show. Seniors, who used to rely on safe investments to live in security, now “pay” for the challenge of letting the Fed steal their money. And the Fed treats them as 2nd class citizens with their hands out! They just tell them to get an EBT card and a free cell phone.
 
“He who will not economize will have to agonize.”     – Confucius
 
Today, pension plans are so grossly under-funded, seniors are being told they are in danger of losing that one last remnant of security they had worked for all of their lives. And this is Fed Elder Abuse at its pinnacle! Insurance companies depend on interest rates to survive. They’re sucking air due to ground-zero rates. The companies insuring long-term health care are raising their premiums higher than an addict who just got a fix. Because the Fed has artificially kept the Consumer Price Index so low, seniors aren’t getting increases in Medicare or Social Security stipends. We need to pass the Federal Elder Abuse Act soon, before all of our seniors are forced to take jobs as greeters at the local Walmart!
 
“These days, you’ve ‘gotta’ milk a dollar out of every dime.”
– Gayle Forman
 
Those approaching retirement have three choices: save more, work longer, or tighten their belts; and pray. What happens when the whole country is faced with this dilemma? This is why most are wondering how the Fed was ever allowed to abuse its duty to guard and protect our money supply? Why have they become an army for the progressives? How can they justify their incompetent illogic by punishing seniors so young progressives can buy homes paid for with the pensions and security dollars of our elder patriots? Should older Americans be forced to live out their lives barrennessly because of Federal Elder Abuse? “It’s always easier to spend other people’s money than yours.”
 
The Fed has abused our seniors too long. It’s time to expose this heinous crime! Robbing them of their savings, taking away the security they once cherished, to give it to the federal government to make these villains into heroes should be a felony. That’s a nefarious crime that must be stopped! We need to pass the Federal Elder Abuse Act now. Our society has a duty to pay back those who have paid forward and repay them for their loyalty to the USA. 
 
William Haupt III
@watchdog.org
Published in Lifestyle
 
If you plan on being out and about in summer, chances are you’ll be exposed to a lot of sun and higher temperatures.
 
How much heat can a person safely endure? It depends. 
 
Between 1999-2009, more than 7,200 people died from heat-related causes, an average of 658 per year, according to the most recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
“Heat can be a silent killer because it doesn’t topple trees or rip roofs off houses like tornadoes and hurricanes,” says Eli Jacks, chief of fire and public weather services with NOAA’s National Weather Service. “Nevertheless, it’s a dangerous weather condition for which people should prepare.”
Certain groups of people should be especially careful during hot weather conditions. 
 
For example, city-dwellers and those living in the upper floors of tall buildings or in heat-prone regions are most at-risk for heat-related illness. People who have difficulty getting around or who have health conditions are particularly susceptible. The elderly and the very young also merit special attention during periods of high heat and humidity.
 
NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have partnered to increase awareness for outdoor workers and their employers during excessive heat events. 
 
No matter what your job is or how you spend your free time, prevention of heat-related illness is key. Here's what you can do:
 
1. Be informed and stay alert.
 
Pay close attention to heat advisories or warnings that have been issued for your community.
*NOAA’s National Weather Service continually updates heat-related advisories and warnings online at weather.gov
*If you do not have Internet access, listen to the radio and news broadcasts for the daily expected temperatures, taking account for humidity known as the Heat index.
 
2. Plan for periods of extreme heat.
 
*Visit your physician for a check-up to find out if you have a health condition that may be exacerbated by hot weather.
*Service your air conditioner before hot weather arrives, and obtain window fans to help cool your home.
*Know where to go when weather heats up. Find cool indoor places to spend time on hot summer days, such as a local library, shopping mall, museum or aquarium.
 
3. Know what to do and what not to do during hot weather.
 
*DO - Slow down, and reduce strenuous activity. Mow the lawn or garden in the early morning or late evening instead of midday.
*DO - Dress in lightweight, nonrestrictive, light-colored clothing.
*DO - Drink plenty of water or other nonalcoholic fluids.
*DO - Eat light, easy-to-digest foods.
*DO - Seek out shade if you have to be outdoors for extended periods. Spend more time in air-conditioned places.
*DO - Check on elderly neighbors, friends and relatives to make sure they are okay.
*DO - When outside, take frequent dips in the ocean or pool, or mist yourself with a water bottle. When inside, take frequent cool baths or showers and use cold compresses to cool off.
*DO - Apply high-SPF sunscreen frequently when outdoors.
*DO - Seek immediate medical attention if you experience symptoms of heat illness. (See list below for symptoms, likely conditions and treatment.)
 
However, please remember:
 
*DO NOT leave children, the elderly, or pets in the car for any reason, for any length of time. Look before you lock! A dark dashboard or seat can easily reach temperatures in the range of 180 to more than 200 degrees F!
*DO NOT stay in the sun for long periods.
*DO NOT take salt tablets unless directed by a physician.
*AVOID alcoholic beverages; they can dehydrate you and increase your risk of heat stroke and other potentially fatal heat-related illnesses.
 
4. Know the warning signs of heat-related illness.
 
Too much exposure to heat can raise your body temperature to unhealthy levels and may make you ill — it can also be deadly. Take the precautions listed above and be on the lookout for these warning signs that you may be in trouble:
 
Heat cramps
 
SYMPTOM:  Painful muscle cramps and spasms, usually in muscles of legs and abdomen heavy sweating.
TREATMENT:  Apply firm pressure on cramping muscles or gently massage to relieve spasm.  Give sips of water; if nausea occurs, discontinue water intake.  Consult with a clinician or physician if individual has fluid restrictions (e.g., dialysis patients).
 
Heat exhaustion
 
SYMPTOM:  Heavy sweating, weakness, cool skin, pale and clammy. Weak pulse. Normal temperature possible. Possible muscle cramps, dizziness, fainting, nausea and vomiting.
TREATMENT:  Move individual out of sun, lay him or her down, and loosen clothing.  Apply cool, wet cloths.  Fan or move individual to air conditioned room.  Give sips of water; if nausea occurs, discontinue water intake.  If vomiting continues, seek immediate medical attention. Consult with a clinician or physician if individual has fluid restrictions (e.g., dialysis patients).
 
Heat stroke
 
 
SYMPTOM:  Altered mental state. Possible throbbing headache, confusion, nausea and dizziness. High body temperature (106°F or higher). Rapid and strong pulse. Possible unconsciousness. Skin may be hot and dry, or patient may be sweating. Sweating likely especially if patient was previously involved in vigorous activity.
TREATMENT:  Heat stroke is a severe medical emergency.  Summon emergency medical assistance or get the individual to a hospital immediately.  Delay can be fatal.  Move individual to a cooler, preferably air-conditioned, environment.  Reduce body temperature with a water mister and fan or sponging.  Use air conditioners. Use fans if heat index temperatures are below the high 90s. Use extreme caution.  Remove clothing. If temperature rises again, repeat process. Do not give fluids.
 
NOAA
http://www.noaa.gov
Published in Outdoors
Traffic Magistrate Christopher Benjamin played a series of dramatic videos of crashes caught on tape by red-light cameras. The people in the audience gasped each time someone t-boned a car, flipped over a railing, struck a motorcyclist or nearly plowed through a line of kids crossing the street.
 
“Ladies and gentlemen, please rise,” Benjamin told the audience after playing the videos. And then he surprised everyone. “Be safe out there. Case dismissed. Thank you.”
 
Three times that recent afternoon, groups of 20 or more filed into the courtroom, only to learn one of the quirks in the uneven enforcement of the state’s red-light camera tickets. Hundreds of tickets issued by Florida City for running red lights have been dismissed in recent months after drivers failed to pay them. That’s because the small town at the southern reaches of the county simply wasn’t sending an officer the 50 miles to court in Miami.
 
The way the state’s red-light camera statute is enforced varies depending on which city or county someone is ticketed in, and how the ticketed person tries to resolve the ticket.
 
Broward cities aren’t currently using red-light cameras pending the outcome of high-profile litigation.
 
While the differing enforcement may turn out to be a key issue for the Florida Supreme Court, which agreed in mid-May to take a case challenging the cameras, two things remain constant across the state. Like modern-day small-town speed traps, the cameras raise significant revenues for cities and the state, and the tickets cause thousands of car owners statewide to have their licenses suspended every year. Approximately 40 percent of those suspensions happen to Miami-Dade drivers, according to records compiled by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
 
Watchdog.org
Published in Lee County & Florida
Sunday, 25 June 2017 11:26

Happy Hour: Pick of the Week

 
It's off season,  I love off season, don't get me wrong, I love season too. For those who have been here for any length of time know we can't survive without our tourist and friends that come to call our little paradise home for the winter months, yet this is the time of year that “us” locals get to enjoy our little slice of heaven. 
 
I so enjoy going into a restaurant without all the crowds and more importantly... no waiting. Welcomed by the happy faces that are glad to see me, feeling more appreciated is good. Let me be clear here,  the welcome I receive in season is wonderful most of the time, but the combination of less volume and smaller crowds, with various restaurants all vying for our attention, make for a noticeable difference in off season. I haven't even mentioned the fantastic happy hours and dining specials that are much easier to enjoy this time of year. 
 
Happy hours are the early-bird specials of the 21st century.  If you eat early enough, you can get an inexpensive meal. Whether it's strategic meal planning or a cost-effective way to check out a new place.
 
In this week’s feature, we introduce our Food Critic, Peter Dellaforte who uncovered a great spot that has discounted drinks and food, on the back bay. BayFront Bistro is located on Fort Myers Beach behind the Publix at Snook Bight Marina, 4761 Estero Boulevard.
Happy hour is 3pm-6pm at the Upstairs Bar and Downstairs Bars. Come enjoy 50% off any dinner appetizers along with 50% off wines, call liquors, and beer!
 
We each started off with the Ahi Tuna Tartar, chunks of sushi grade tuna, seaweed salad, avocado pieces and carrot slivers all tossed with a chili soy sauce, served as a tower over sliced cucumbers, some sriracha sauce on the side, a crispy wanton, wasabi and ginger.
 
We continued with the Sweet Fire Shrimp, Prince Edward Island Mussels and the Brie Apps.
 
We found the Sweet Fire Shrimp, to be excellent, the lightly fried shrimp tossed in a spicy aioli sauce served in a crispy wanton bowl. Excellent blend of spices that I would call medium heat. Splitting this dish was a mistake, so we ordered another.
 
The Prince Edward Island Mussels were sautéed with shitake mushrooms & sweet onions in a rich & slightly spicy sambal & sherry wine butter sauce & finished with crostini for dipping. We recommend shelling all the mussels when you get the dish and letting the shucked mussels sit in the sauce. You'll want to order some extra bread with this for dipping. This dish comes in a little hotter on the spice chart but still easy on the palette. 
 
The Brie is baked in a pastry puff covering and served warmed just right, with fresh berries and cranberry compote which was a great transition dish between the other spicier selections.
 
We recommend the Bay Front Bistro and look forward to returning to try their other tasty dishes. 
­
239-463-3663 or at: www.BayFrontBistro.com
 
Peter Dellaforte
Published in General/Features
 
Friends and Family will get together at the Surf Club on Fort Myers Beach, Sunday July 2nd to celebrate the life and memory of Bruce Cermak, long time resident and loved beach icon who passed away on the same date one year ago.
 
The event will be held as a food drive to benefit the Harry Chappin Food Bank and be in a Luau theme.
 
Friends and guests are asked to come and have a good time and bring a food donation, any form of can goods or dry goods like cereal, beans, pasta and rice, even fresh fruits and vegetables are put to good use by the food bank.
 
There will be live music, free food, prizes for best dressed Hawaiian, Hoola Hoop and Limbo contests, drink specials, guest bartenders and more. As a special treat, any one that brings in a food donation will get a Leis, now that sounds like a good time for a great cause.
 
Sunday, July 2nd starting at 1pm, at The Surf Club, located at 1167 Estero Blvd
Fort Myers Beach, Florida.
 
Hope to see you there!
Published in News Around The Bay
Tuesday, 20 June 2017 18:56

What happened to American loyalty?

 
With fourth of July around the corner, thoughts of liberty, and most of all “loyalty,” are the values we think of.
 
But as we look around America today, it is hard to conceive that the relationships we once had with friends, loyalists, and even some trusted kinships cannot to be found anymore. This denigrating of loyalty in our society has transformed our lives. Those we trusted have deserted us for narcissistic gain.
 
What happened to moral America? What happened to our nation? Who decimated our values and our homogeneity? Why do we feel betrayed?  What has invaded our society, alliances, even separated some families? Weren’t we taught that blood and loyalty is thicker than water?
 
Those of us who grew up during the Cold War had a critical bond for self-survival. I remember the times the air raid sirens would start bellowing on the last Friday of every month. The ear piercing decibels rang through our heads like the shriek of a cat’s horror when his tail got caught under a rocking chair!
 
But those practice sessions reinforced the importance of unity. We knew one nuclear bomb could decimate America if the Reds penetrated our ozone. The Red Scare was redoubtable and corporal and this contrivance united us in intimacy. We were bonded allies, huddled in unison, chaperoning each other if the ultimate tragedy ignited! We were united; siblings, friends, teachers and nuns. We gave sanctuary to each other. We cared, were devoted and promised our loyalty to all.
 
When those portentous forewarnings pealed into the classrooms with rancor and acrimony, they caught many of us off guard. Sometimes we were denuded agglomerating in the backroom clothes closet, under the dark shadows of our uniform jackets. We were terrified, scared, and some of us cried while others comforted us with sanctimonious prayer.
 
When those loud warring heliographs wailed for no reason, the nuns would pick up their rosaries and we would pray sheltered in safety under our student desks. Although we knew if this was a real Bolshevik attack, the refuge provided by those meager asylums would offer us less protection than our rosary beads. But we knew the prayers we were saying and our unity was the only thing that could save us from annihilation. For God would save us!
 
Dr. King use to tell us, “In the darkest of dark hours ‘unity and loyalty’ would lead us to victory.” As we look back at those hard times and the courage and fortitude that it instilled in all of us, it makes all God-fearing Americans wonder why our kindred and personal relationships and sacred societal unities have so perilously decayed? That question can only be ameliorated if we ascertain who is carrying the moral torch of authority that mitigates our ‘righteousness.’
 
For eons, it was the religion of our country that dictated our moral values and taught us to love our families and mankind. They brought out our values of justice and compassion for all. If you had high moral values, making good decisions was easy.
 
But in recent decades, the religions in America have lost out to the public authority in teaching our young the necessity to respect families, friends, and society in the name of the Commandments of God. The reality is that the secular world pays little attention to the church, and the teachers unions in our common core schools make little if any reference to our Lord the Almighty Redeemer. Since today 90 percent of America’s youngsters attend public schools and get no exposure to religion there, the consequences are obvious.
 
The only moral or religious training they get is from their families and churches. Yet they spend the multitude of their developing lives under the guidance of teachers, divergent of faith. The teachers abide by a new kind of bible; common core textbooks! These emulate little homage to the teaching of the morals and values we used to learn.
 
A new secular consensus of human values, human rights, and human responsibilities replaced religion in our schools years ago. These values were established by politically motivated groups, teachers unions, and governments void of all organized religious curriculum. The restriction of even the mention of the word of God has had a decadent and demeaning affect on kindred relationships and social order.
 
Since the laws of our nation were built on the axioms of The Commandments, if we don’t learn them at an analytical age, how will we ever learn the very concepts of being legal and ethical? Our founders used them to fortify the core moral fabric that laid the foundation for our great republican nation.
 
This secular approach to organized society with government and teachers unions making their rules and own set of commandments has decried social order. The new moral mandates they teach students to live by have not only affected our nation and its institutions but is has brandished harsh and unforgiving values on many of our families’ ties.
 
Those moral generation gaps that used to be bridged with strong religious beliefs no longer exist. And this tenantless void has resulted in the disunion of those with intrinsic religious values and those with secular beliefs. This is reflected throughout American institutions, governments, and colleges today. This carnage of our morals and values is destroying America.
 
Our public schools have been forbidden to make reference to any Christian beliefs, yet they have been instructed by our liberal government to teach tolerance to our children of those pulpiteering the desecration of our republic. The Supreme Court has been vigilantly supporting the government and teachers unions banning access to the Word of God in public schools.
So now the moral and value codes we used to learn can only be taught in our homes and our churches. Those authentic values that influence us to lead good lives are forbidden by Common Core and other attempts to control curriculum in schools.
 
The lack of morals and values has created a class of “I’ll do what is best for me” in society. Not only do few stand up for what is right if they can find profit in what is wrong, but even worse, there are those who bury their heads in the sand. Those are the worst cowards of all: for those are the ones who have values and morals but are too terrified to expose themselves and get involved.
 
Instead of standing up for principle and fighting back when they see a wrong they run and hide under the bed. Yet they are the only ones left who can save the moral character of our great republic and a society that is “paving the road to hell with bad intentions.”
 
The moral decay of loyalty and unity with our families, friends, and alliances that once made this country great has turned into self-righteous indignation for personal intemperance. It’s time for the few who still can decipher between right and wrong to step up and show our loyalty.
 
It is our lack of values, morals and–most prudently–loyalty that will bring us to our knees.  Salute your flag and rekindle your loyalty today.
 
William Haupt III 
watchdog.org
Published in National
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