The beloved basketball announcer Dick Vitale once said: “Life is simple. Make good decisions and good things happen. Make bad decisions and bad things happen.”
A half-century of tragedy has flowed from the Supreme Court’s poorly reasoned Roe decision in 1973:
1. John Roberts v. Roe
Hugh Hewitt writes for National Review:
When the Supreme Court turns to the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization this fall, I believe that six justices will vote to overrule the combined doctrines of 1973’s Roe v. Wade — the original and sweeping intervention by the Supreme Court in the organic development of state statutory systems regulating abortion — and its 1992 “do-over” in Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
The entire cobbled-together façade of jerry-rigged, ad hoc, and incoherent abortion case law will be swept away, and the half century of strained readings and outright judicial inventions overruled. The repeated attempt by the Supreme Court to legislate at one remove from representative state and federal elected legislatures will, blessedly, end. Abortion will be legal in many states — even late-term, “partial birth” abortions — and, in other states, almost never allowed after a heartbeat is detected in the unborn baby.
The Court will walk away from the now obviously failed effort to forge a national consensus by diktat where none can be had. The issue will return to the political realm to be decided, and after an initial burst of emotional reactions, the Court and the rule of law will be better for it. And the near-uniform chorus of elite media claiming a republic-ending departure from the doctrine of stare decisis will be largely ignored, the media discredited as they are on this issue by their relentless, decades-long effort to disappear half the country’s deeply felt beliefs on the subject.
Fidelity to precedent — the principle of stare decisis — is vital to the proper exercise of the judicial function. Stare decisis is the preferred course because it promotes the evenhanded, predictable, and consistent development of legal principles, fosters reliance on judicial decisions, and contributes to the actual and perceived integrity of the judicial process. For these reasons, the Supreme Court has long recognized that departures from precedent are inappropriate in the absence of a special justification. At the same time, stare decisis is neither an inexorable command nor a mechanical formula of adherence to the latest decision, especially in constitutional cases. If it were, segregation would be legal, minimum-wage laws would be unconstitutional, and the government could wiretap ordinary criminal suspects without first obtaining warrants. No justice has viewed stare decisis in such absolute terms.
RELATED: The Secular Case Against Abortion (National Review)
I suspect that my horror at the idea that some people are simply disposable grew stronger as a result of my mum’s work. Before she retired, my mother taught preschool children who had special needs, such as those with autism, Down syndrome, and cerebral palsy, and for the better part of a decade, I volunteered to help at the weekly sessions she ran. In some countries, children such as the ones my mother taught are considered subhuman — in Iceland, for example, the government boasts frequently that it has “eradicated” Down syndrome, when what it means in practice is that parents in Iceland have killed all of the children whose prenatal tests had revealed the condition — but nobody at these sessions seemed to think that these children were anything other than slightly different, just as worthy of love and attention and time as anyone else, and so neither did I. (The problem with executing people who are inconvenient seems obvious to people when we discuss, say, elderly people who have developed Alzheimer’s, about whom no doctor would ever think to say, “We cured your grandfather — by killing him.”)
- U.S. Catholic bishops may dodge rebuke of Biden over abortion
While some U.S. Catholic bishops continue to denounce President Joe Biden for his support of legal abortion, their conference as a whole is likely to avoid direct criticism of him at its upcoming national meeting.
The highest-profile agenda item is a proposed “teaching document” about the sacrament of Communion. Months of work on the document, by the conference’s Committee on Doctrine, coincided with sometimes heated debate among the bishops as to whether Biden and other Catholic politicians who support abortion rights are unworthy of receiving Communion.
A draft of the document circulating ahead of the Nov. 15-18 meeting in Baltimore breaks little new ground, though its language could be toughened during the gathering. The draft mentions
abortion only once and doesn’t name Biden or other politicians, though it says at one point, “Lay people who exercise some form of public authority have a special responsibility to embody Church teaching.”
A member of the doctrine committee, Bishop Michael Olson of Fort Worth, Texas, said he and his colleagues decided that the document should avoid any trace of partisan politics.
- Assistant Professor Advocates Against Stigma for ‘Minor-Attracted People’
From The Daily Citizen:
Allyn Walker, an assistant professor at Old Dominion University, is creating controversy across the internet with the publication of her book, A Long Dark Shadow: Minor Attracted People and Their Pursuit of Dignity.
Both in the book and in a subsequent interview, argues for the term “Minor Attracted People” (MAPs) for those sexually attracted to children and teens – what most of us would call pedophiles or pedophilia. Despite headlines to the contrary, Walker says that she does not advocate for pedophilia to be accepted. In a recent interview with Prostasia (more about that organization in a bit, she stated, “And I want to be extremely clear that child sexual abuse is never ever okay.”
But at the same time, she wants those with attractions to minors – who don’t act on those attractions – to experience less stigma and shame, including the shame brought on by words like “pedophile.” She sometimes uses the phrase “non-offending MAPs” t0 distinguish those who don’t act on their attraction to minors from those who sexually abuse children and teens.
Walker, who was born female and named Allyson when she wrote her dissertation, “Understanding Resilience Strategies Among Minor-Attracted Individuals,” identifies as non-binary and describes herself on Twitter as “Queer criminologist & abolitionist. Deeply anxious. Terrible at Twitter. All views my own.” She’s an assistant professor of sociology and criminal justice at Old Dominion.
- Secret Dossier Kept on Arizona Parents Who Objected to CRT, Mask Mandates in Schools
From The Daily Citizen:
A bizarre and disturbing story has emerged from Scottsdale, Arizona involving a secret dossier of information gathered about parents of students in the Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) community who have objected to mask mandates and the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in the district’s schools.
The dossier appears as a Google Drive file on a computer in the home shared by SUSD school board president Jann-Michael Greenburg and his father, Mark Greenburg.
According to the Daily Independent which broke the story on November 9, the dossier includes photos of district parents and at least one minor, and personal financial documents, including professional certifications and mortgage statements. The files also reveal that those tracking the parents’ information are having parents followed in public places and keeping documentation.
A few of the files contained labels such as “SUSD Wackos” and “Anti Mask Lunatics.”
- Boys Have Eating Disorders, Too. Doctors Thinks Social Media is Making it Worse
From the Wall Street Journal:
Eating disorders are on the rise among boys, say doctors, who think images and videos on social media are a factor.
Pediatric wards are seeing more eating-disorder cases overall, with boys making up an increasing share of patients. Cases with boys are often more severe than with girls, the doctors say, because boys’ disorders often go unnoticed until they are far along, and because eating disorders are largely believed to mostly affect young women.
In some cases, slimmer boys are bulking up to gain muscle mass. In others, bigger boys are slimming down to look more toned or to improve athletic performance. Boys who work out often receive praise in person and on their social-media posts for seemingly healthy habits and appearance.
- High schoolers’ interest in four-year colleges dropped precipitously during pandemic
From the Washington Examiner:
The pandemic has taken a significant toll on the desire for high school students to pursue higher education, a new study shows.
Less than 50% of high school students are interested in four-year colleges, a decrease of over 20% from the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, a new survey reported.
The number of teenagers likely to pursue a traditional four-year degree decreased from 71% to 48% between May 2020 and September 2021, according to surveys of over 1,000 students by the Educational Credit Management Corporation.
“The findings point to a shift in mindset: While the four-year college path has become the ‘status quo’ for many, a majority of today’s Gen Z teens are questioning this path and are looking to pursue more affordable education options that connect directly to careers,” the Question the Quo survey arm of the ECMC Group wrote.
- Ronald Reagan, GE and the Company that Brought Good Things to Life
From The Daily Citizen:
It was announced this week that General Electric – whose founding involved Thomas Edison and the legendary financier J. Pierpont Morgan – is breaking up into three separate companies. The one-time manufacturing behemoth will spin off into three business – power, aviation and healthcare.
According to Scott Davis, chief executive of Melius Research, “G.E. got caught in the past – and now it’s the end, it’s over.”
Company executives and Wall Street analysts may quibble over what brought G.E. to this decision and why – but there is no denying that the company played an oversized role in American life, and in ways far beyond its production of light bulbs, toasters and television sets.
That’s because in 1954, General Electric hired Ronald Reagan, a fledgling Hollywood actor whom some believed was past his prime. At the time, Mr. Reagan was a Democrat. In fact, he called himself “A New Dealer to the core” – a reference to President Franklin Roosevelt’s controversial policies that most critics believed were socialistic in nature.
By the millions, Americans tuned in to watch General Electric Theater and in doing so, welcomed Ronald Reagan into their homes. There are some who contend affinity for the future president and his ideas was so high that pressure was put on G.E. leadership from people within the Kennedy administration to fire him out of fear he would ultimately threaten the Democrat party. Others dispute such a claim, but his contract was not renewed after 1962.
Nevertheless, Reagan’s star was rising, and there would be no stopping him. G.E. may not have entirely made Ronald Reagan – but it undoubtedly and irrefutably provided him with the platform to take the next step in his storied and celebrated career. Like the famous slogan of the company he once so proudly represented, Ronald Reagan brought good things to life. As president of the United States, he used the bully pulpit to champion the sanctity of life, lift up the family, defend religious freedom, help restore America’s standing in the world and infuse a generation with a patriotic fervor not seen in many years.
- For Christians, All Investing Is Impact Investing
From the Daily Signal:
This spring, a tiny investment firm made waves by disrupting one of the world’s largest companies. Five months earlier, the upstart investment manager Engine No. 1 began lobbying Exxon to more aggressively confront climate change.
Though Engine No. 1 owned only 0.02% of the shares of the energy giant, it convinced the asset managers who control massive holdings of almost every publicly traded firm in the world—BlackRock, State Street, and Vanguard—to back its play; and on May 26 the little activist investor gained two board seats at Exxon and a mandate to radically revamp one of the largest organizations in the world.
Activist investing is, of course, nothing new. Christians helped to ignite the trend when in 1971, holding just 0.004% of General Motors shares, the Episcopal Church offered a resolution at General Motors’ annual meeting to cease manufacturing operations in apartheid South Africa.
The move was supported by GM’s lone black board member, Leon Sullivan, a pastor of the Zion Baptist Church in Philadelphia. It was ultimately defeated, garnering only 1.29% of the vote, but ended up shifting GM’s policies in South Africa resulting in the adoption by IBM and GM of the “Sullivan Principles” in 1976.
- America’s Lipstick War
From the Wall Street Journal:
At the beginning of the 1921 school year, Pearl Pugsley of Knobel, Ark., was sent home from high school for wearing lipstick and powder. Not only were her parents understanding about her adolescent infraction, they retained a lawyer on her behalf, arguing that their daughter’s civil rights had been violated. The case received nationwide press coverage, and at the height of Pearl’s fame, her mother said, she was offered $1,000 a week by a “Los Angeles motion picture concern [that] wants ‘the heroine of the lipstick war.’”
America’s lipstick war is little remembered today, but a century ago, the debate over whether respectable women could wear lipstick had important political and social implications. For Pearl herself, wearing lipstick was about more than vanity—there was a principle at stake. “It wasn’t a desire to create trouble when the suit was filed,” she explained at the time. “I’m going to fight the case to a finish in an effort to uphold women’s rights to use all reasonable means to look their best at all times.”
No matter what you thought of their morals, flappers were good customers. In 1919, according to U.S. Treasury data, American women (and probably a few men) spent an estimated $750 million on “rouge, lipsticks, powder and perfume,” equivalent to almost $11 billion in today’s dollars. Some critics were concerned about how much they were literally consuming: The average wearer “Eats Her Height in Lipstick Every Four Years,” blared one Iowa newspaper headline. Yet the fact that there were “Fifty Million Painted Lips Kissed Everyday!—And No One Gets Poisoned,” as another paper reported, was probably reassuring to the public, which in earlier generations had been warned that makeup contained lead, arsenic and other toxins.
10. Tunnel to Towers Delivers Mortgage-Free Homes to 35 Gold Star Families on Veterans Day
From The Daily Citizen:
To honor our nation’s greatest heroes, the Tunnel to Towers Foundation has delivered 35 mortgage-free homes to 35 Gold Star families for Veterans Day.
A Gold Star family includes the immediate family member(s) of a service member who died during a time of conflict.
Additionally, this Veterans Day the foundation held a name reading ceremony at the Lincoln Memorial. Volunteers read the names of all 7,070 American service members who have died since September 11, 2001 – with the last 13 names being those who were killed in the Kabul airport attack earlier this year.
On November 11, Tunnel to Towers paid off or provided mortgage-free homes to the families of:
- 15 U.S. Army soldiers
- 14 U.S. Navy sailors
- 4 U.S. Marines
- 1 Air Force Captain
- 1 Major in the North Carolina Air National Guard