Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Trayvon Martin Case: A Lesson in Pure Corruption

The Trayvon Martin – George Zimmerman incident probably taught us more about corruption in American society than any other in recent history. And I believe that most people are not aware of exactly what corruption I am referring to. Those who listen to the mainstream media are led to think that this case was a miscarriage of justice, that a murderer got away with his crime. But it’s not just the media pushing this belief. It’s the 'leadership' of the black population in general. And it’s our government. (Disclaimer: If you object to my use of the word ‘black’, just get over it. I’m not playing the politically correct term-of-the-day game. That is weak and cowardly. The use of the word ‘black’ wasn’t derogatory before, and it’s not now… blacks use this term to describe themselves, therefore it is OK. Just get over it.)
As one educated as a lawyer and having attended two police academies (one of which I finished at the top of the class), I am trained to consider established facts and available evidence, and to dismiss emotionally-charged opinions, racism and agenda-driven selfish interests. I am trained to see our courts and our legal system as a place where reason and law prevail, and not public opinion or emotion.

The Trayvon Martin case has been more emotionally and racially charged than any other case in my memory.

I will divide the underlying corruption into three parts.

The Media

First, a basic understanding of the media is necessary.

The media does not report facts. They do not report impartial truth. Only the na├»ve actually believe this. We must remember that these mainstream media outlets are businesses, in fierce competition with other media corporations. They must earn a profit. The personalities we see and hear on the television and radio must add to that profit. This is true of all of them, from Katie Couric and Matt Lauer to Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh. If they cannot draw the loyal followers, they are replaced with someone else who can. Liberal media outlets appeal to a different crowd than conservative ones. But they have the same struggles: ratings and profit.  Even so-called non-profit media outlets, such as National Public Radio, must appeal to certain groups in order to attract sponsors. They may not sell commercial advertising space, but ratings – and therefore listener appeal – are still of primary importance.

The problem is that truth does not necessarily sell. It doesn’t increase profit or ratings. It does not command premium rates for advertising spots. What sells are those ‘stories’ that appeal to our emotions and selfish interests. That is what people want, and they tune to the media sources that give it to them. These media organizations are corporations with revenue and ratings goals, first and foremost. Let’s not lose sight of that fact.

In other nations, such as North Korea and mainland China, and the former Soviet Union, the media is controlled by the government. Everything that is broadcast is approved and filtered by the government, according to their agenda. Thus, there is no impartial truth there.

Whether the media is commercially run or government-run, whether liberal or conservative, truth and facts are not necessarily on the menu. The organization behind the scenes has an agenda… that determines what gets aired.

Now… what does all of this have to do with the Trayvon Martin case? Simple. Everything.

The media has made no effort to broadcast truth and facts. They have consistently told lies that sell. An honest look at the available facts and evidence of this case would lead any reasonably thinking person to conclude that George Zimmerman did not murder Trayvon Martin. The evidence is overwhelming. It’s not even a close call. But the media has never covered the case based on facts and evidence. They have covered it based on public perception. Why? Because if they defend George Zimmerman based on the evidence and facts, they lose ratings. Big time. They lose millions of black viewers. They lose anti-gun advocates. They lose pretty much anyone who makes their decisions based on emotional impact rather than facts. And unfortunately, that is a large percentage of Americans.

Instead, the media gave people what sells: an innocent, unarmed little black teenage boy needlessly shot and killed by a white racist. The mainstream media outlets did not present any substantial amount of the overwhelming and compelling evidence that proved George Zimmerman’s innocence.

And even after the jury returned a verdict of not guilty based on the very facts and evidence that the media ignored, the media continued to air video of black groups around the nation crying injustice and racism. They had to point out repeatedly that the jury consisted of five whites and only one black… injecting more racism into the mix. They aired Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon Martin’s mother, telling people about how her son would not go to college and how she would not have grandchildren from him ‘because of a law that allowed [Zimmerman] to go unpunished for his crime.’ None of what she said was true. This was a mother publicly mourning the loss of her son and appealing to emotion instead of facts. I suppose I can’t blame her for that. But does the media care about the truth here? Of course not. Sybrina Fulton's speech sells advertising space. She gets ratings. Damn the truth. Bring on the profits.

What I find particularly disgusting about the mainstream media is how they openly claim to be a credible source of ‘news’, impartial and factual. They are the opposite. The inherent dishonesty and hypocrisy in the mainstream media, especially given their self-proclaimed social mission in society, is repugnant. If our emotionally-charged society sided with truth, virtue and integrity, they would convict the mainstream media of criminal fraud.

The “Court of Public Opinion”

One of the most dangerous trends in the evolution of our legal system is that verdicts are becoming less dependent on facts and evidence, and are based more on public perception and emotional impact. Justice is migrating more toward political correctness and away from truth.

Race is perhaps the biggest influence in the ‘court of public opinion’, often having its roots in cultural defensiveness. Particularly pertaining to the black population, they have struggled mightily for a couple of centuries to feel established and accepted in what used to be considered a white man’s society. It is a fact that for many years, blacks in America were at a disadvantage for several reasons. Those reasons have been largely unfounded, meaning that there were no good reasons for treating them differently than everyone else. To think that blacks do not deserve equal opportunities with whites and others is racist on its face.

Racism against blacks should be extinct by now. Unfortunately, it is kept alive by so-called leaders of the black population, much more so than by whites. If people would have embraced the peaceful ideals of Martin Luther King, there would be equality everywhere for some time now. Instead, we have grandstanders like Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan and Jesse Jackson who continue to incite racism and hatred, because they profit by doing so. If these racist hate-mongers didn't exist, or if people didn't listen to them, there would be peace and harmony among the American people. If they didn’t continue to manufacture societal division for the sake of personal gain, blacks everywhere in this nation would be where Dr. King once dreamed of. Making the problem even worse, the cry of racism is used all too often in order to manipulate others and to exploit our political, legal and economic systems. This is also encouraged by those who don’t truly want equality because it wouldn’t be good for themselves – ie: black ‘advocates’ and many politicians. The media often uses the race card, too, again because it’s popular and brings loyal patronage.

Back to our issue…

Trayvon Martin was a black teen who was shot by a white-Hispanic man. The instant reaction around the nation, and implied by the media, was that this was yet another ‘lynching’ of an innocent black by a white racist. And despite the overwhelming facts and evidence to the contrary, black leaders and media outlets still have not let up on this untruth.

Black citizens nationwide were demanding that George Zimmerman be prosecuted when no evidence against him existed. When Zimmerman was found by the jury to be not-guilty, blacks all around the country went into mourning, crying injustice. “Zimmerman must be guilty because he’s a white man and he murdered an unarmed black teen” seemed to be the consensus. Zimmerman started receiving death threats and the like. People could not trust our justice system to render a verdict based on facts and evidence, when our emotionally-charged feelings didn’t agree with it. To refuse to consider the overwhelming evidence in Zimmerman’s favor (Trayvon Martin had almost no evidence in his favor, despite much of what favored Zimmerman being declared inadmissible), and still condemn him, largely because of the race difference, is racist itself. To refuse to accept our legal system when it worked as it should, simply because it didn’t favor our race, and to threaten the ‘opponent’ after justice was administered, is corruption.

Further, the NAACP has pressured Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder to initiate Federal civil rights charges against Zimmerman after his acquittal in the murder trial. They cannot accept that a jury has weighed the evidence and found him innocent of murder. So they look for another angle with which to punish him for what they accuse him of, again without any evidence to support it. The NAACP is racist in this action. They are corrupt in their behavior. They are part of the problem of inciting hatred and racism, not part of any solution.

As long as blacks allow themselves to be led by those who foster hate and racism, there will be division and distrust between the races. As long as racists like Sharpton, Farrakhan, Jackson, the NAACP, and others continue to incite conflict, there will be animosity, racism and violence. As long as the race card is dishonestly played as a toxic, manipulative tactic, whether by individuals, organizations, the media or the government, there will be corruption.

The Government

The state of Florida did not have the evidence necessary to prosecute George Zimmerman for the murder of Trayvon Martin. Yet Barack Obama pressured the state of Florida to initiate a prosecution anyway. Why would hedo that?

I have previously described Obama as ‘the father of all vote whores’, because that is what he is. He is the master panderer. He is a racist. He has no personal convictions other than socialism and his Muslim faith (This is not a bash on Muslims. Not at all. Just on Obama’s dishonesty about his faith while claiming to be Christian so as not to alienate himself from voters). Obama will pander to any person or group of persons who will keep him in power. Liberals are a very easy group… just give them anything they want and they will vote for you.

Here, Obama wanted to preserve the loyalty of the black vote just prior to the 2012 election. His statement, “If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon Martin” was a racist barb to incite anger toward the defendant, George Zimmerman, for a crime he did not commit. It was designed to rally blacks emotionally rather than based on his record.

After the jury in George Zimmerman’s trial, Obama said in a statement, “We are a nation of laws, and a jury has spoken.” Yet Obama and Eric Holder are considering, again at the urging of the NAACP, to bring Federal civil rights charges against Zimmerman, again without evidence. They cannot let the jury’s spoken verdict rest. They have to keep the racism alive because it empowers them. That, my friends, is political corruption… something that permeates the very fiber of Obama’s being.

Further, Eric Holder stated that the 'Stand Your Ground' law, upon which Zimmerman tried to base his defense, should be repealed. That law was upheld a couple of years ago by the Supreme Court as the "Castle Doctrine". But for Holder to say a good law should be repealed simply because the outcome of a racially-charged case (upon which he can personally gain) didn't go his way, is just another indication of power-grabbing corruption in Washington.

Summary

Nearly all the evidence and available facts show that George Zimmerman is not a racist. Yet that is what the media and our government have led people to believe.

Nearly all the evidence and available facts show that Zimmerman was defending himself and honestly believed his life was in imminent danger when he shot Trayvon Martin. Yet that is not what our media showed the nation.

Barack Obama pressured the state of Florida to initiate prosecution proceedings against Zimmerman despite a lack of evidence. Yet he acted like a ‘compassionate leader’ in a time of national tragedy when on camera.

Upon acquittal, blacks around the nation cried out against Zimmerman as ‘one who got away’ rather than respecting the overwhelming facts. This is what the media basically told them. Those who had the facts available concealed them instead of presenting them. Racism was needlessly allowed to boil... because it is profitable to some.

Zimmerman faces death threats because of the inherent racism and concealment of facts in the media.

Obama and Holder, at the urging of the NAACP, are considering Federal civil rights charges to keep the hatred and racism alive despite a lack of evidence.

From every angle, corruption is at the center of this case. From the media’s dishonesty and greed, to racism in society, to pandering for support in government… too many people have a stake in convicting an innocent man for their own personal gain and gratification. I have learned to try to stay away from potential conflict, because when justice and public opinion are at odds, fairness is not on our side. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The True Definition of Marriage

The recent ruling by the Supreme Court that overturns the Defense of Marriage Act requires me to comment. As one educated in law and deeply committed to Christianity, I feel blessed that I can see through the distraction from virtue that these worldly views create.

The bottom line here is that our government is promoting liberalism in all forms. Why? It gets votes. If you want to get elected and stay in power, just pander to a liberal. Liberals at large do not care about the national debt…they don’t expect to ever have to personally account for it. They do not care about foreign policy…they don’t expect the actions of foreign nations to directly affect them. They do not care about the virtues of self-restraint, working hard for what they receive, or maintaining liberty the way it has been in every society that preceded us – by strong defenses. Instead, they care about gay rights. They care about abortion rights. They care about illegal immigration rights. They care about environmentalism. They want health care that is paid by someone else. They want an income that is paid by someone else without working for it. In summary, they care about the benefits and the pleasures they can enjoy today, and leaving the day of accountability to the future, as if it will never come. As long as politicians give people the immediate selfish gratification they want, those politicians will keep getting elected. I simply call them vote whores. That’s what they are.

Marriage was instituted by God, not by the laws of men. It was first mentioned in the Bible. It was not a legal ceremony with paperwork, fees and a blood test. It was a commitment to one’s new spouse and to God. And as such – being a genuine commitment to God, it carried much more weight, integrity and reverence in the minds of those who participated. Only in our modern era has the legal system usurped authority over the God-ordained act of marriage. And this is only because modern laws have commingled marital rights with legal rights. Examples are the right to own property, the right to share insurance benefits, the right to income tax relief, such as ‘married filing jointly’. Once the government gave incentives or advantages to married couples, they opened the door to requiring ‘equal protection’ to unmarried partners as well as to homosexual relationships. Because of this crossing of legal lines, the courts have no choice but to act. Either they refuse to recognize marriage as a legal act and remove all marriage-based public incentives (tax breaks, etc), or they allow all the same privilege under the equal protection clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. This really isn’t about the courts becoming corrupt because they made these decisions. They had to. The current moral/political climate requires that they equally protect all. Failing to act would be imposing moral beliefs (religion) into law. The problem is that religion (marriage) and government (taxes, property, etc) crossed paths and shared benefits along the way. That is where this conflict really started.

What we have today are two opposite definitions of marriage. There is the ‘legal’ or worldly definition: the government-sanctioned union between two consenting adults. Then there is God’s definition: the union of a man and a woman. Only one can be correct, though. If the government wants to call a homosexual ‘marriage’ a legal marriage, then let them. But if government truly wants all people to be equal, then don’t persecute heterosexual people. This includes small business owners and religious institutions. If a small business owner chooses not to do business with a homosexual person because doing so violates his personal religious morals, there are two choices: 1) Allow this, and the homosexual population can find plenty of other providers for services; or 2) Force the business owner to conduct business with the homosexual person, completely violating the First and Fourteenth Amendment rights of the business owner. Unfortunately, our government has chosen the latter… they willfully violate the Constitution and force business owners to serve in ways that violate their religious convictions.

As an example, a wedding photographer who personally is a conservative Christian worshipper refuses to photograph the wedding of a gay couple. Realistically, the gay couple could find any number of other photographers who would want their business. No one’s rights are violated in this case. But today, that photographer could be criminally prosecuted for refusing to photograph a gay marriage. That violates his constitutional rights. Does the government care about his (or our) constitutional rights? Not if protecting the rights of heterosexuals costs them votes. Not if doing the right thing hurts their re-election chances.

Regarding the definition of marriage, the government can legislate any definition they want to. God instituted marriage, not men. God defined what a marriage is. Men cannot change that definition. They certainly can pretend to, and they are. But marriage is, and always will be, between a man and a woman. The government is simply using improper terminology to define a civil union in order to bestow government benefits and pander for votes.

Calling a gay union a marriage is no different than the government passing a law that says that any object moving in the sky is ‘flying’. If you throw a rock, it is ‘flying’. If you fall off a tall building, you are ‘flying’. Does that mean you ‘crashed’ when you hit the ground as if it was an accident? Do we need the National Transportation Safety Board to investigate the cause of your ‘flying accident’ and assign blame somewhere else? Falling out of the sky is not flying, any more than a gay union is a marriage, no matter what the government legislates. What about the definition of Heaven? Our government could pass a law saying that Heaven is officially defined as anything that brings pleasure to anyone. Clearly contrary to the definition that the Creator of Heaven gave. Again, the government can call anything what they want. It does not change the facts. Marriage was defined by God to be between a man and a woman. Government can pretend to change that, but they are only pretending. Such a definition only matters to the godless.

None of this is intended to be ‘hate speech’ against gays. Not at all. I have gays in my extended family and I love them. The gay co-workers in my career have been some of the very best, most dependable employees, and the first I’d think of if I needed to hire someone. Their sexual choices do not define everything else about them. I support the rights of gays to have all the same legal privileges that heterosexuals have. That includes property rights, tax breaks, educational opportunities, and the like. No more and no less. Equal. Recently the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has openly supported gay rights as they pertain to society. The right to jointly own property, the right to be free in one’s beliefs, the right to cohabitate, etc. There is no social discrimination from the LDS Church, despite the efforts of persecutors to imply differently and incite hate toward the church. Social equality is what they say… but our government will not stop there. They are forcing homosexuality and gay marriage into society while inhibiting and outright threatening the rights of heterosexuals. They are promoting liberalism under the intentionally deceitful banner of equality.

One thing I believe is that persecution against Christians everywhere will increase. Those who hold true to their beliefs will feel the heat. Many will buckle under the persecution and will ‘get out of the kitchen’, showing God that their faith is only so strong. But I also believe that God will allow those of us who believe in Him, who genuinely cling to Him, to be protected when things get really difficult. But we cannot procrastinate our faithfulness and wait until it is convenient to jump on God’s bandwagon. The time is now.


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Survival and Faith in the Last Days


I am certain that we all have different ideas of how the last days will play out before Jesus Christ returns to Earth as is prophesied in holy scripture, and as He promised. One thing that I believe we all can agree on is that times will be hard, and our faith will be tested.

I believe that our faith in Christ will be tested to its very limits. Throughout history as recorded in the scriptures, God has ‘sifted the wheat from the tares’, trying the faith of His followers to see who will fall by the wayside, their weak faith having buckled under adversity of varying degrees.

With the first election of Barack Obama as president of the United States, millions of people began to see their liberties eroding at a faster pace than ever before. We saw the beginning of the end of the greatest economic power in the history of the world. With over fifteen trillion dollars in debt, a level that is all but impossible to ever repay through traditional means, we witnessed what appears to be the permanent paralysis of America as a viable center for international commerce, and as an example to the rest of the world of a successful free enterprise marketplace. We witnessed the decay of constitutionally protected property rights with the introduction of forced national health care, and the commensurate tax increase to pay for it. Obama’s first election victory was largely a mandate against the perceived incompetence of George W Bush as portrayed in the mainstream media. Obama’s victory was also helped by the continuing ineptitude of the Republican party in getting across the value of their message and their platform – one of patriotism and love of country, one of religious foundation, one of work ethic and the original American dream. That message was crushed by the Democrat’s platform supporting selfish interests and unearned entitlements.

Obama’s re-election victory over Mitt Romney in 2012 was not a contest of who is more qualified to lead our nation out of its present economic crisis. I doubt there are more than a few hundred people around this entire country who honestly believe that Obama is better suited to turn our market economy, unemployment rates, and debt levels around. That is not what this election was about at all. It was a further mandate for selfish interests and socialism. More specifically, it was a mandate in favor of abortion rights, gay rights, welfare entitlements, illegal immigrant amnesty, and the lack of work ethic and desire to succeed that was once crucial to the survival and prosperity of this once-great nation.

I believe this most recent election was a mandate for what is evil in the sight of God in place of what is righteous. What is degenerate prevailed over what is uplifting. What many people do not seem to realize is that, while they had the freedom to make that choice, they do not have the ability to choose the consequences of that choice. As Christ taught several times about those who acted unwisely, “Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.” So it will be with all of us. Because of choices made by others, we must all suffer together.

How will we suffer? I have a few ideas. I am not even including the natural disasters and calamities that the Lord will send in order to 'preach His sermons' to a wicked world. 

Some of the natural consequences of Obama’s agenda are that Americans will eventually reach a limit where they have no more money for the government to tax from them. The Democrat’s tax-and-spend agenda depends on a continuous flow of tax dollars that will never be reversed or reduced. With the most recent significant tax increase to pay for ObamaCare, many people are left without enough to pay their basic bills.

I remember a conversation I had a few years ago with a retired man from Connecticut. He was 77 years old at the time, and had retired debt-free. He owned his nice, comfortable home free and clear. But according to his story, the governor of the state approved a series of property tax increases which eventually tripled the tax rate that people had planned and budgeted for. My friend was now paying around $10,000 per year in property tax for his rather modest home (probably about 2,000 square feet). And the governor wanted to raise the rate again. What my friend told me is that he, like many other seniors just like him, didn’t have the extra resources to pay for that tax increase, and his home was in foreclosure, only because of the tax increase on his property.

My point in sharing this true story is that the Democrats will not be able to stop their tax-and-spend juggernaut, and will eventually tax the public into financial ruin. Then their system will begin to collapse like the pyramid scheme that it is. This out-of-control taxation has already forced many corporations to outsource jobs to other countries… that and unfair, unethical collective bargaining practices by some unions. I find it amusing that the Democrats love to condemn corporations for outsourcing jobs, when the only reason they did it was to be able to survive the punitive tax rates that the Democrats themselves established. It is as if the Democrats are angry with the corporations for not just laying down and taking the intended beating, but are trying to protect themselves and their shareholders from it…. Like the Democrats are saying to the corporations, “You’re not playing fair. We want to vilify and demonize you in the public eye and plunder your money, but you are making it difficult for us.” The Democrats will run out of resources to feed their monster, and it will come crashing down, taking millions of us with it.

When that happens:

·         Unemployment rates could skyrocket, soaring up to and possibly beyond fifty percent. Businesses simply will not be able to survive, and jobs by the millions will be lost.
·         Senior citizens might lose their Social Security benefits altogether. There won’t be government money to give them.
·         The health care system, even that which is mandated by the government, could cease to exist as we know it. Most people will not be able to afford health insurance, or it might not be available at all. Seniors, those who typically need the health care system the most, might be without Medicare or any other coverage.
·         Prescription drugs and other medicine might not be available because the companies who manufacture them will be out of business.
·         Food distributors might not continue to fill the shelves of our grocery stores. The grocery stores might not be in business. People won’t be able to obtain food easily, the way we do it today.
·         Any debts owed to you will default, as will debts you owe to others. Default will become a national epidemic, and those who depended on ‘the check in the mail’ will be left waiting and waiting…

What would we do in circumstances such as this? No job, no more money coming, no way to buy more food at the grocery store, perhaps no more gas for your car, no health care, no prescription drugs… what would we do? It’s pretty much an impossible situation to survive. And many millions of people would not survive it. Perhaps most people would not.

The only answer I can see is that this would be a very large-scale sifting of the wheat from the tares. Those who put their trust in God and keep His commandments will be blessed. They will be protected. They will be provided for. A senior citizen who once desperately needed a prescription drug to maintain their health, or even possibly to survive, would be blessed and sustained by the Lord through their obedience to His teachings and commandments. Those who follow the Lord and demonstrate their firm faith in Him will have their needs provided. They will survive while many around them will perish, not knowing where else to turn, but being unwilling to acknowledge God as a source of relief. It reminds me of the Book of Mormon verse where Mormon describes the degenerate state of the Nephites just before their final destruction:

“And they did not come unto Jesus with broken hearts and contrite spirits, but they did curse God, and wish to die. Nevertheless they would struggle with the sword for their lives.” (Mormon 2:14)

We might lose our right to own firearms, thereby giving government and organized crime free reign. But by obedience and faith in God, we might not need the guns. We would be protected from evil.

We might not have health care coverage or medicine. But through obedience and faith, and the power of the priesthood of God, we might not need them. Our faith will be more powerful than the wisdom and technology of man.

We might not be able to buy food in stores. But with God’s help, and through the cooperative help of other faithful people, we can grow, hunt and fish, and survive with adequate amounts of food.

The bottom line is that Christ has promised blessings and protection to those who follow Him. He makes no such commitments to those who disobey him and pursue their own gods in the world. I believe in those promises.

I believe He expects us to do everything we can do for ourselves to be prepared, and to not be caught by surprise (see the Parable of the Ten Virgins in Matthew 25 in the New Testament). But that which we cannot do for ourselves, if we are faithful, the Lord will make up the difference.

“…for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” (BoM - 2nd Nephi 25:23)

My hope is that my friends and family will recognize the signs of hard times ahead that are plainly visible to those who ‘will see’, and will take them seriously and prepare themselves. I’m going to do everything I can to be ready for the rough times ahead.