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Are you ready for your teenage daughter to be drafted into a combat role?

I said that this could happen, and now it has. The Army and Marine Corps chiefs are calling for women to register for the draft. The Washington Post reports:

The top officers in the Army and Marine Corps testified on Tuesday that they believe it is time for women to register for future military drafts, following the Pentagon’s recent decision to open all jobs in combat units to female service members.

Gen. Mark A. Milley, chief of staff of the Army, and Gen. Robert B. Neller, the Marine Corps commandant, both said they were in favor of the change during an occasionally contentious Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the forthcoming full integration of women in the military. They offered their opinions in response to a question from Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), who said that she also is in favor of the change.

“Senator, it’s my personal view that, based on this lifting of restrictions… every American who’s physically qualified should register for the draft,” Neller said.

The main reason that we ought to oppose this is because men and women are different. I know it’s not popular to say so, but that doesn’t make it any less true. This used to be obvious to everyone, but now it’s not. We would do well to remind ourselves what our grandparents and generations before them have always known.

Not only are men and women different dispositionally, but they also have fairly profound physical differences. On average, women are weaker than men. And you don’t have to be a bible-believing conservative to acknowledge this (e.g., 1 Pet. 3:7). It’s an empirical fact observeable by anyone with eyes to see. This puts women at a distinct disadvantage in combat.

One recent item that illustrates the point. MMA fighter Tamika Brents describes what it was like to face a man in the ring:

I’ve never felt so overpowered in my life. I’ve fought a lot of women and have never felt the strength that I felt in a fight as I did that night… I can only say I’ve never felt so overpowered ever in my life, and I am an abnormally strong female.

What happened to Tamika during her fight with this man?

What Brents reportedly experienced at Fox’s hands was a concussion and a broken orbital bone that required staples. In other words, this woman was savaged by an opponent that was genetically advantaged with a thicker bone structure, longer reach, and denser musculature—or, put more simply, was a man. Fox was able to do this despite hormone treatments that made him more feminine in certain aspects.

Can you imagine this experience played out countless times on distant battlefields in places where women are treated as little more than chattel?  You need to imagine it because it may be your daughter or mother or niece called up. Can you imagine sending your daughter or mother into the maw of deadly conflict with men who will do much worse to them than what happened to Tamika Brents in the MMA ring?

In a widely circulated letter, a female Marine named “Sentry” puts a fine point on it:

This country and our military are NOT prepared to see what the enemy will do to female POWs… How is our 24/7 news cycle going to cover a captured, raped, mutilated woman? After the first one, how are the men in the military going to treat their female comrades?… Men in the military will move heaven and earth to protect women, never mind what it does to the mission. I present you with Exhibit A: Jessica Lynch. Male lives will be lost trying to protect their female comrades. And the people of the US are NOT, based on the Jessica Lynch episode, prepared to treat a female POW the same way they do a man.

I know that many women have served admirably in our military. And there are certainly some who are physically exceptional and who may show some aptitude and interest in combat. But that’s just it. They tend to be exceptional. They are not the norm. And opening the draft to all women and potentially exposing all women to combat service is treating the exception as if it’s the norm. This is absurd and dangerous.

In addition to these issues, there is the very real possibility that physical requirements will have to be lowered in order to achieve the egalitarian ideal of women in combat units. If this happens (and many believe that it certainly will), our force will be weakened as a result. This too is absurd and dangerous.

At the end of the day, this issue is irreducibly moral. It goes to the heart of what kind of people we want to be. Are we really so beholden to feminist propaganda that we are willing to send our daughters and mothers to be ground up by the rigors of a combat unit? I hope not.

Men ought to bear the burdens of combat. We are all diminished by foisting this burden on our mothers and daughters and nieces. We can do better. We must do better.

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The infamy comes to Louisville

The Courier-Journal is reporting that Louisville’s Planned Parenthood moved to a new office in December. Planned Parenthood has been in Louisville for a long time, but its Louisville office did not offer abortions. That all changed this week. According to the report:

Planned Parenthood has begun offering abortions for the first time in Kentucky at a new health center it opened last month on South Seventh Street in downtown Louisville.

Operating as Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, or PPINK, the group on Jan. 21 began offering surgical and non-surgical abortion services at the health center, which replaced its former Louisville clinic on South Second Street…

The move to provide abortions is sure to be controversial in Kentucky’s political climate as several bills aimed at curbing abortion are pending in the current session of the General Assembly. Gov. Matt Bevin also has included in his proposed budget language that would bar any organization that provides abortions from receiving state funds.

And anti-abortion protests are a regular event at Louisville’s only other abortion provider, a private clinic downtown.

Downtown Louisville already has one abortion clinic. Unless that old clinic closes, we will now have two clinics performing abortions within about a mile of one another.

Planned Parenthood has fenced-in their new facility, likely making it impossible for “Speak for the Unborn” volunteers to interact with the women entering the clinic. I’m told that Planned Parenthood will be offering their services at a lower cost than the current abortion clinic. In other words, they are being shrewd and are making sure that mothers face no opposition to the decision to take the life of their unborn children. It is grotesque.

Fellow pro-lifers in Louisville, this is a call to action. We are going to need for pro-lifers to step up their support for “A Woman’s Choice/Necole’s Place” crisis pregnancy center.

Planned Parenthood is the leading provider of abortions in America. They kill over 300,000 unborn children in America every year. Now they have decided to double the infamy of abortion in Louisville. We have to respond.

UPDATE #1: In December, Planned Parenthood claimed that they had no plans to offer abortions at the new facility. Here’s how Insider Louisville reported it:

Just as the case was with their previous location, the clinic does not provide abortion services besides referrals, and Manier said they have no immediate plans to begin doing so.

Planned Parenthood had no plans a month ago to offer surgical abortions? That seems very unlikely. Why were they denying just last month that they would begin offering abortions?

UPDATE #2: This may explain why Planned Parenthood was trying to add abortion services on the quiet. The Courier-Journal reports that Governor Matt Bevin says this new service is unlicensed and illegal.

The news drew immediate fire from Gov. Matt Bevin, an anti-abortion Republican.

“They are openly and knowingly operating an unlicensed abortion facility in clear violation of the law,” Bevin said in a statement. “We will use the full force of the commonwealth to put a stop to this. There is no room in Kentucky for this kind of blatant disregard for proper legal procedure.”

A Planned Parenthood spokeswoman responded that the organization “applied for an abortion facility license and commenced services under the guidance of the Office of the Inspector General, the state office that is responsible for licensing health facilities.”

That office is housed within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, part of state government. Planned Parenthood didn’t say whether it had yet received the license, only that it followed the guidance of the licensing agency in beginning abortion services.

Governor Matt Bevin is a strong adovocate of the pro-life cause. I can’t overstate how thankful I am that he is on the job.

Update #3: Yesterday, the Bevin adminisration ordered Planned Parenthood to “cease and desist” performing abortions at their new facility. Planned Parenthood says  it has stopped offering abortions until they clear up their conflict with the State of Kentucky. Read about it here.

Women in Combat and the Undoing of Civilization

Our civilization just took a gigantic leap backward yesterday, though I’m wondering if anyone will notice. Yesterday, Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter removed final obstacles restricting women from serving in combat units in the United States military. The decision was made three years ago by then Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and now the three year period for studying the move has come to an end. The Washington Post Reports:

Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter said Thursday that he is opening all jobs in combat units to women, a landmark decision that ends a three-year period of research with a number of firsts for female service members and bitter debate at times about how women should be integrated.

The decision opens the military’s most elite units to women who can meet the rigorous requirements for the positions for the first time, including in the Navy SEALs, Army Special Forces and other Special Operations Units. It also opens the Marine Corps infantry, a battle-hardened force that many service officials had openly advocated keeping closed to female service members.

“There will be no exceptions,” Carter said. “This means that, as long as they qualify and meet the standards, women will now be able to contribute to our mission in ways they could not before.”

I understand that we are living in times of tremendous social change. Americans have by and large cast aside the “quaint” view that men and women are different and that they ought to have roles and responsibilities that correspond to those differences. So for many people, I’m sure this news merely appears as the next stage of progress toward equality in our society. I have a different view. Continue Reading →

Christmas means that God IS fixing this

“God is not fixing this” is the headline at The New York Daily News in the wake of the horrific shootings in San Bernardino yesterday. The message reflects an unfolding social media dispute about gun control laws. Several Republican candidates for president had tweeted that their “thoughts and prayers” were with victims and families of the shooting.

A backlash against such prayer followed. The backlash basically consisted of the idea that prayer is not enough. One must do something if one really cares about gun violence. And that something is to publicly support gun control legislation. Since “God is not fixing this” in response to our prayers, we have to fix it through government regulation. Continue Reading →

On the Colorado Springs Shooting

I have waited until now to comment on the shooting last week. I had hoped for us to understand a little more clearly what happened and why. Details are still murky, but I’m sure more will be clear soon. As I write this, the gunman has yet to make his first appearance in court, but he will do so later today. As we await details, here are my thoughts based on what we know now:

1. The shooting was an unmitigated evil. Full stop. The gunman—no matter his motivation—committed unconscionable acts of violence. We need to have the moral clarity to declare that he violated the sanctity of human life with his assault on people created in the image of almighty God. His actions deserve every bit of moral opprobrium we can muster.

2. It is not yet clear what his motivation is. His mugshot offers an image of someone who looks deranged. News reports have been able to piece together a profile of a man who has had frequent run-ins with the law—from alleged peeping-tom incidents to shooting his neighbors’s pets with a pellet gun. He lives alone on patch of land and scares the neighbors when he passes by. He said something about “baby parts” after his arrest, but authorities are still loathe to attribute a motive for his crime. Apparently it is not yet clear. The suggestion that this guy in any way represents the pro-life movement is absurd. He has more in common with the Gerasene Demoniac than the Little Sisters of the Poor. I think most rational people can see that. But then again, not everyone is rational, are they? Continue Reading →

Some provisional reflections on the refugee situation

In the aftermath of the horror last weekend, a lively discussion has broken-out over the United States’s role in sheltering Syrian refugees. The issue came into focus shortly after the attacks when it was discovered that one of the Paris attackers was carrying a Syrian passport that was used to enter Europe through Greece as a refugee from Syria.

The United States has already taken in 1,800 refugees from Syria over the last few years. And President Obama intends to resettle about 10,000 more in the United States in the coming months. Just yesterday morning, President Obama reaffirmed that commitment and upbraided Senator Ted Cruz (though not by name) for suggesting a religious test for future refugees. The President insisted that our security procedures are sufficient and that the U.S. would go ahead as planned. Continue Reading →

Arise, Lord! Break the arm of the wicked man!

The news from Paris tonight is a horror. If you are struggling for the words to pray in the face of such evil, consider lifting up the words of Psalm 10:

12 Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God.
    Do not forget the helpless.
13 Why does the wicked man revile God?
    Why does he say to himself,
    “He won’t call me to account”?
14 But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
    you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
    you are the helper of the fatherless.
15 Break the arm of the wicked man;
    call the evildoer to account for his wickedness
    that would not otherwise be found out.

16 The Lord is King for ever and ever;
    the nations will perish from his land.
17 You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted;
    you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
18 defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
    so that mere earthly mortals
    will never again strike terror.

Planned Parenthood doctor admits to felony

In the most recent Planned Parenthood video, a Planned Parenthood doctor admits to committing a federal felony in her abortion practice. She describes performing partial birth abortions in an effort to prevent damage to the baby body parts that they intend to sell. Watch above. As you watch, keep in mind the federal laws in question: Continue Reading →

Throwing your money into a bureaucratic black hole

Last week, The Wall Street Journal published an op-ed about Mark Zuckerberg’s $100 million dollar gift to public schools in Newark, New Jersey. What happened to the money?

The Facebook founder negotiated his gift with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and then-Mayor Cory Booker in 2010, and it flowed into Newark’s public-school system shortly thereafter. The bulk of the funds supported consultants and the salaries and pensions of teachers and administrators, so the donation only reinforced the bureaucratic and political ills that have long plagued public education in the Garden State.

Mr. Zuckerberg is not the first private donor to fail at reforming public education by working with government—and he won’t be the last.

Did you get that? One-hundred million dollars just disappeared into a bureaucratic black hole. The money ended up being spent on the very bureaucracy that is so much to blame for the problems within public school systems. The op-ed concludes:

Philanthropists will not be able to change education and improve student outcomes unless they can circumvent the bureaucracies and interest groups that are responsible for the problems they hope to solve. If they act independently, though, their money has the potential to alter the lives not only of individual students, but entire communities.

What a cautionary tale. Read the rest here.

A brief word about the ACBC conference and the protest

This week I gave a couple of talks at the annual conference of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC). The conference themes were transgender and homosexuality, and I gave one address on each topic. Rosaria Butterfield, Sam Allberry, Heath Lambert, Albert Mohler, Stuart Scott, Owen Strachan, and others also addressed the 2,000 people who gathered for the conference. Continue Reading →

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