- By a vote of 60 to 39 this morning, Sens. Kennedy and
Smith's hate crimes amendment was attached to the defense authorization
act. After three days of virtual silence, several Republican senators
spoke against the bill within the two hours of debate. Sen. Lindsey Graham
briefly argued that, if passed, the President will veto the hate bill and
arms bill together, jeopardizing timely support of our troops. Sen. Jeff
Sessions contended that states are adequately dealing with hate crimes
and that Kennedy's amendment burdens the defense authorization bill. Senate
majority leader Mitch McConnell, arriving after the debate, was allowed
to very briefly state that a hate bill was irrelevant to an arms bill.
- The real hero of the day was Sen. Orrin
Hatch. Yesterday he stood alone among Republicans to publicly oppose the
hate bill. But today he spoke three times with powerful, logical, legal,
and constitutional reasons why the hate bill is redundant to state law
enforcement, which adequately deals with all kinds of violent crime. He
said that gender identity, as put forth in this legislation, is unclear.
Its definition depends on the subjective perceptions of both the hate
criminal and the victim. He offered his own amendment (which was later
passed unanimously) calling for the federal government to authorize studies
to determine if states are adequately enforcing hate crimes laws.
- Remarkably, Sen. Byrd of West Virginia,
habitual supporter of the hate bill, voted against it. If only one more
pro-hate bill Senator, Democrat or Republican, had been persuaded, either
by massive calling during the last week or by impassioned attack of the
hate bill on the floor of the Senate, the hate bill would have been destroyed
in this Congress. It would have to be resubmitted in the next Congress
under the stigma of having been rejected six times. Yes, the President
has promised to veto today's hate bill victory. But at the same time, the
hate bill, through passage now by both House and Senate, is energized and
dignified as never before to be easily ratified in the next Congress, little
more than a year from now.
- Credit for hate bill victory must largely
go to the repeated impassioned speeches by Sens. Kennedy and Smith, but
leaders of the religious right and Republican senators are, by default,
just as responsible. Since the defense appropriations act was introduced
16 days ago, opening the possibility of hate bill attachment, there has
been an astonishing lack of consistent warning from leaders of the religious
right. This has grown even more acute since Monday, with a virtual blackout
of warning from all new right websites (See, <http://truthtellers.org/alerts/donewrightwanthatebill.htm>Do
New Right Leaders Want Hate Bill Passed? and <http://truthtellers.org/alerts/hatebillreadyforvote.htm>
Hate Bill Ready for a Vote). As a result, the millions of calls which
might have been generated amounted to a relative trickle. Only at the
last minute, yesterday, when it became virtually impossible to influence
today's Senate vote, did new right leaders send out calls to action.
- Such dereliction of duty was reflected
on the floor of the Senate this week by the silence of Senators well known
to oppose hate laws. Day after day they ignored invitations to speak to
the Senate against the hate bill.
- Both new right leaders and Republican
senators represent themselves as watchmen on the wall, guardians of our
freedom. Yet God told the prophet Ezekiel that if, as such a watchman,
he knew the enemy was coming and yet did not sound the alarm, he would
lose his eternal soul (Ez. 33)
- For the past several weeks, both Christian
and Republican leaders have seen the enemy coming. Yet they did not sound
the alarm in a timely and effective way. For this they will have to answer
to their Creator. Meanwhile, all Americans now are very, very much closer
to having to answer to the federal "thought police" for every
idle word that is not politically correct.
- Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National
Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative watchdog organization.
- Let the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith
teach you how they have saddled 45 states with hate laws capable of persecuting
Christians: <http://www.adl.org/99hatecrime/intro.asp> http://www.adl.org/99hatecrime/intro.asp.
- Learn how ADL took away free speech in Canada
and wants to steal it now in the U.S. Congress. Watch Rev. Ted Pike's <http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7217700265038533779>
Hate Laws: Making Criminals of Christians at <http://video.google.com/>video.google.com.
Purchase this gripping documentary to show at church. Order online at <http://www.truthtellers.org/>www.truthtellers.org
for $24.90, DVD or VHS, by calling 503-853-3688, or at the address below.
- TALK SHOW HOSTS: Interview Rev. Ted Pike on
this subject. Call (503) 631-3808.
- NATIONAL PRAYER NETWORK, P.O. Box 828, Clackamas, OR