Tag: speak up

We Must Speak Up

From The Asaph Files

Sometime back, I created this category for my blogs (The Asaph Files) with the sole intention of using it to make known information that I have collected that I feel is important for you to know about. Whether or not you are in the loop on the issue or unaware of it, my intention is to shed as much light on it as I can. So that you too, can speak up.

HR 5 – The Equality Act

U.S. Representative, David Cicilline, a Democrat from Rhode Island of the 117th Congress has authored this bill that has already passed the House on February 25, 2021, and now is in committee in the Senate.

Here is the cover page of the Bill THAT I HAVE READ in entirety. Phew…

screen shot of the HR 5 bill cover page

After reading the whole, dang thing, it is clear beyond a doubt that what this bill is proposing to do is CHANGE THE LAWS of America. Many very specific laws are addressed and particular sections are highlighted for language change, with the specific language that must be amended in the previous law.

Here’s an example-

section of HR5, changing the language of previous laws

This happens dozens of times in HR5. Civil Rights Laws are being rewritten with the stroke of a pen with this bill.

Here is the stated purpose of HR5 –

  • to define sex, sexual orientation and gender identity
  • expand the definition of public accommodations to include places and establishments that provide exhibitions, exercise, amusement, gatherings of displays, goods, services or programs
  • allow the Department of Justice to intervene in equal protection actions in Federal Court
  • prohibits an individual from being denied access to shared facilities, including rest rooms, locker rooms, and dressing rooms that is in accordance with their gender identity

All under the banner of nondiscrimination protections provided for all LGBTQ people.

According to Theo Santos from the American Center of American Progress –

“The Equality Act would meaningfully expand civil rights protections for many Americans and advance treatment for LGBTQ people, women, people of faith and people of color. It’s time to extend these benefits of equality to all.”

Center for American Progress

Now, I’m for freedom for all and as you know, I believe all men (and women) are created equal. I just happen to believe there is a better, more permanent way to achieve equal justice for all under the law, other than HR5.

Because here’s what HR 5 would really do

  1. redefine sex under civil rights laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity – overriding basic biology along with millennia of tradition
  2. make it illegal to distinguish identity from biology thereby prioritizing transgender people over women
  3. erases sex as a distinct legal category
  4. forbids policy makers from ever making a distinction between male and female ( which is necessary of course for providing safety and equality of the sexes)
  5. thrashes the Civil Rights Acts of 1964
  6. guts the Religious Freedom Restoration Act
  7. threatens constitutional freedoms by eliminating conscience protections for employers, doctors, educators, & religious groups
  8. have the government dictate how Americans think about gender and sex
  9. use the Department of Justice to punish those who violate the government imposed beliefs
  10. violates constitutional freedoms and weaponizes civil rights laws
  11. expands the scope of accommodations to any establishment and opens them up to liabilities for discrimination claims
  12. biological males will be allowed to participate in female only activities
  13. all single sex spaces will be open to both sexes and adds sexual orientation and gender identity
  14. doctors and counselors could be punished for violating their conscience in gender identity treatments
  15. undermines parents rights

After researching from many different sources, I created this list with the data I gleaned from: The Wall Street Journal, The Heritage Foundation, Congress.gov, and AmericanProgress.org

new definitions of sex in HR5

OPINION

This bill would not only drastically change the country that I live in and love, but more importantly it would seek to reshape and redefine the very nature of mankind. It would discard our Judeo Christian foundation and belief in God creating male and female with the intent of them becoming one to reproduce and steward the Earth.

It would threaten faith based organizations and expose them to federal prosecution. It would stigmatize long held, virtuous and godly views about sex and marriage and the sanctity of life.

In fact, discrimination would be the law of the land.

I do not want to live in that America, that is why I am speaking up.

I cannot remain silent.

I urge you to do the same and join me in writing and calling your government representatives and speaking out against this bill and its passage.

Contact your Senator at:

https://www.senate.gov

Many times I have asked you to rise up, step up, branch out, take risks, or to do something different, here is another with easy steps you can take that WILL make a tremendous impact on our nation.

Please, please, we must speak up.

Cheers.

Silent Sentinels

Strong armed by four men and two women, who strapped her to a chair, her arms and legs secured with leather lashes, they then forced her mouth open while one woman straddled her holding it so against her protestations.

A rubber tube was then inserted into her nose and pushed into her stomach. Blood ran from her nose while abrasions and bruises began to appear on her body.

Raw eggs and milk were then poured into the tube which then landed directly into her stomach. She later described the pain as “a ball of lead in my stomach”.

Against her will, she was being force fed.

This happened three times a day.

On one night, the superintendent of the prison ordered many to be severely beaten. These were mid to upper class women, who were beaten by the guards, all of whom were hurt, some to unconsciousness.

This night is referred to as The Night of Terror, November 14, 1917. Lorton, Workshouse for Women, VA, 20 miles southwest of Washington D.C.

These women, arrested and charged with trivial charges like “obstructing traffic”, were given the choice to pay a fine or go to the workhouse, where they would serve six months in prison.

Not all were force fed. But Alice Paul, one who was sentenced to seven months for obstructing traffic was treated so roughly and fed only bread and water, decided to go on a hunger strike. Again, the superintendent decided he would have no one “die” on his watch, and ordered her to be torturously force fed three times a day.

Her crime? Those women’s real crime?

Silently marching outside the White House, protesting the lack of women’s voting rights. Those women were called, “Silent Sentinels”.

News leaked about the night of terror and abuses within the workhouse and two weeks later the women were released.

Three years later, August, 1920, the 19th Amendment was passed assuring women as citizens and providing them the right to vote.

“The right of citizens to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the U.S. or any State on account of sex.”

The 19th Amendment

The right to vote has been passionately fought for. Not only for women, but for many disenfranchised citizens. Our nation has a rich history of many such battles, protests, and yes, finally victories.

The right to vote, the freedom to vote, as with all freedoms, is not free. It has not come without a high cost and sacrifices. Many there be with stories like the Silent Sentinels, who stood their ground amid persecution and abuses and thereby won the freedoms we enjoy.

In 2019, two billion people in fifty countries voted.

Next week, in America, citizens will again vote. (or like me, perhaps have already voted by mail.)

My prayer is that you will be one who takes your freedom and responsibility seriously and with your ballot and voice be that sentinel keeping watch over America and her values.

Cheers to you and to America.

The power of convictions

What drives the son of a sharecropper, 7th child of 12, and 5th grade drop out to become the 19 year old, most decorated WW2 combat soldier, having earned every military combat award in his 3 years in the Army?

What empowers a black woman in the segregated South of 1955 to refuse to follow the bus drivers instructions, telling her to stand up and change her seat for that white man to sit? (When she was already sitting in her “prescribed area of the bus”)

What sustains a man for 27 years in prison because of his anti-apartheid protests but then thrusts him to become the President of that very nation?

What motivates a Chinese writer and literary critic to speak out against China’s single-party Communist rule?

How does a simple woman of 1860’s speak up and protest for the right of women to vote – thus making way for the 19th Amendment?

How does a President, in the deepest racial divide in American history, proclaim that “all persons held as slaves, are, and henceforward shall be free.”?

Time does not permit, but I would love to tell you of others, who in the face of the currents against them, stood out, spoke up, and took a stand. Gandhi, Dr. M.L.King, Mother Teresa, Hudson Taylor, Corrie ten Boom, L.L.Legters, Valentinia Tereshkova, Eleanor, Queen of France, and Martin Luther to name a few.

The answer to how. They all had CONVICTION!

Convictions that were driving them. Convictions that they would not compromise. Convictions that were bigger than their feelings, circumstances and maybe even courage. Their personal convictions guided their lives, choices, decisions, behaviors and determined their response to others actions.

They were convictions driven. Not feelings or emotions driven.

Convictions are drivers. Convictions not acted upon and practiced are merely beliefs.

Convictions are an unstoppable force. Convictions hold our vision in place even without evidence. When convictions are preeminent, people’s opinions don’t matter.

Convictions = 1. “a formal declaration that someone is guilty of a criminal offense.” 2. “firmly held belief or opinion”

Personal convictions = ” set of beliefs that determine what you believe is right and wrong.”

Convictions have no “maybe” or grey area.

In the book, “God is Not Nice”, he states, “the difference between belief and conviction is degree.” Again he says, “Only people with convictions resist.

I believe we are living in days of living out our convictions. It is time to stand up, speak out and not compromise our convictions. No longer sitting idly back in the “silence of dead convictions.” (God is not Nice)

I remember days when my convictions drove me to deliberate and overt public action. I marched in protest, carried signs, gathered with thousands in the nation’s mall, made phone calls, wrote letters, participated in marches, parades and conferences. Rallied to the standard, lifted my voice, stood my ground, and did not back down.

It takes conviction to:

  • don a mask and scrubs day after day to fight sickness
  • sacrifice family time to serve the communities needs
  • stand in front of teenagers 5 days a week and try to teach them
  • submit to grueling Special Ops training
  • enlist in the military and stand for freedom
  • plan a 211 mile hike
  • start a business
  • loose weight
  • not quit
  • enlist others in a cause
  • share your opinion when you’ve been quiet for so long
  • give in a way you haven’t done so before
  • rally for a cause
  • take action because you can’t stay quiet any longer
  • learn a skill because it is needed
  • take a stand, even if you’re standing alone
  • say yes, when everyone else is saying no
  • say no, when everyone else is saying yes

Where are your convictions? Now is the time to let them carry you and me to a new place of action. I want to be found guilty of having and exercising my convictions.

We can’t point any fingers at the younger generations if we are not standing up for our convictions, can we?

I believe the tide is changing, and those with convictions, are rising up and speaking out. Who knows what change can be brought to our broken world when this occurs?

May the Lord help us all to live by the power of our convictions.

Cheers to you.

Your Voice

Your voice is important. No one else can speak with your voice.

Your voice is as distinguishing as your fingerprint and your DNA. Your voice is uniquely you. It is determined by the finely tuned working of your specifically designed lungs, larynx, vocal folds, and 19 other points between those folds and your lips. The custom shapes of all of those parts of your body make your voice uniquely – your voice. You are an engineering masterpiece.

“Voice” is defined as:

  • a sound produced…
  • a particular opinion or attitude
  • to express something in words

Your metaphorical voice is as unique as your physical voice. The way you express yourself, speak truth, is to be like no one else – unique. Your metaphorical voice is based on your experiences, your values, beliefs, and your perspective. Expressing your voice is vital. Expressing your voice is more important than being heard. Of course, we want to be heard, but finding your voice should not be dependent on someone to hear it.

Recent studies have shown that “the human voice is more powerful a tool for expressing emotion than previously assumed.” The Human Voice Can Communicate 24 Emotions (UC Berkeley), awe, adoration, interest, sympathy, and embarrassment to name a few.

An Israeli company, “VoiceSense”, in a recent article entitled, “Mining Secrets in Your Voice” declares,

“Give us someone’s voice, and we’ll tell you what they will do.”

There is evidence that there are personal insights contained in our own speech. Insights that reveal emotions and tendencies to act. Your voice is highly personal and hard to fake the emotions behind it.

So what’s the point here?

You were given your uniquely designed voice – physical and metaphorical. No one can use it. No one controls it. No one knows what personal insights your voice will reveal. It’s yours alone. Finding and using your voice is key to freedom, value, purpose, healing and happiness.

And best of all, The Creator designed your voice and gave it to you because He wants to hear it. He is listening for your voice.

Your voice is unique.

Cheers to you.