US Senator Barbara Boxer (D-California) did a tremendous service to the conservative cause when she compared a woman’s right to an abortion with a man’s right to purchase Viagra. “Why are women being singled out here? It’s so unfair… We don’t tell men that if they want to … buy insurance coverage through their pharmaceutical plan for Viagra that they can’t do it.”
Senator Boxer sent a much-needed reminder to all of us that value life that, in the abortion debate, we’re not talking about the same thing. She clearly revealed that to the democrats, abortion is simply a “reproductive rights” issue. She revealed it perhaps more clearly than many in the conservative movement often do.
In the minds of conservatives “reproductive rights” has to do with choosing how many children we want to have, at what intervals, and which (if any) birth control methods we use.
Our camps are labled “Pro-Choice” and “Pro-Life” for a purpose. No one wants to be labeled as “Anti-Choice” or “Anti-Life”. Pro-Lifers must insist that our position is not to tell a woman how many children she can have (as they do in China). There is wisdom in limiting how many children you have but the State has no right to arbitrarily set the limit for you. So in the debate of “reproductive rights” conservatives stand for a woman’s right to make those reproductive choices.
However, those of us who value life argue that the abortion kills babies. It’s that simple. Perhaps that’s one reason why we don’t like providing legislative loopholes. For instance, an exemption for the “life of the mother” is unnecessary, since every pregnancy puts the mother’s life at risk to some extent. If you start with and maintain the premise that abortion kills babies, everything in the abortion debate is affected.
And unless we define the debate accordingly, our tax dollars will be used to kill babies. Thank-you, Senator Boxer for helping us see what the debate is really about.
I am a product of the public school system. My dad was a public school superintendent. I remember school teachers telling us that grammar is important. We must understand words people use — and the way they’re used — in order to understand what someone is saying. And what they’re not saying.
I received/endured the required English grammar training of our public school system. I also took two years of French in high school and one year in college. I was fortunate to have also studied one year of Classical Greek at UNC Chapel Hill (a secular state university). Studying classical Greek prepared me for one year of New Testament Greek. Finally, I took a year of Hebrew. One of the most fascinating classes I took in seminary combined Greek and Hebrew and looked at The New Testament Interpretation of the Old Testament — but that’s a side issue here.
Bottom line: I think I have a pretty good feel for how language works: nominals, verbals, conjunctions, and prepositions are grouped together and change their forms accordingly to express thought.
The process of breaking down a language in order to understand someone’s thoughts is called exegesis. The exegetical process is objective. Anyone with a handle of a language and its vocabulary can do it. Exegesis involves observation. Observation asks the question, “What is being said?” and as such, is objective. Interpretation on the other hand, is a different issue. When one takes the observation and asks, “What does this mean?” one has stepped outside the realm of observation and into interpretation.
One of the challenges of teaching the Bible is waiting to ask, “What does this mean?” until I have understood, “What does this say?” This is one of the reasons we have so many disagreements between denominations, cults, etc. “Everybody has their own interpretation” — but that’s a side issue here.
When Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, established the Peace Prize in his will, he said that it would be awarded to “the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between the nations and the abolition or reduction of standing armies and the formation and spreading of peace congresses.”
Grammar is apolitical. Properly interpreting words and their use is not affected by one’s worldview. Note, I said properly interpreting.
For a moment, let’s take Obama, Bush, political parties, and worldviews out of our minds; admittedly that may be very difficult for many of us. If we set aside our differences and simply look at Nobel’s own words, the Peace Prize was to be awarded to the person who “shall have done …” Grammatically, this is called a future perfect.
The American Heritage Dictionary at dictionary.com defines the future perfect as, “A verb tense that expresses action completed by a specified time in the future and that is formed in English by combining will have or shall have with a past participle.” About.com says about the French future perfect, “The French future perfect is most commonly used like the English future perfect: to describe an action that will have happened or will be finished by a specific point in the future.”
I am not a lawyer. I never studied in a law school. But I know that laws are based on the proper use of grammar. The court system issues verdicts based on words, phrases, etc. That is why our laws are so verbose; lawmakers want to make sure there are no (or few) loopholes in the law.
Again, setting aside worldviews, politics and everything else that makes us different, we must all agree that Nobel’s will has been violated. Nobel did not establish the Peace Prize in his will to be awarded to some who provided a promise (or “hope” — sorry, I couldn’t resist) of future action. It was to be awarded to someone who had completed something in the future.
When Obama’s nomination was submitted, he had been the US President for only twelve days. All of us must agree that in his first twelve days of his presidency, President Obama had not, “done the most or the best work for fraternity between the nations and the abolition or reduction of standing armies and the formation and spreading of peace congresses.”
If Barack Obama is nothing else, he is a smart man. You don’t graduate from Harvard or Yale without a great deal of mental competency. Interesting, George W Bush graduated from Yale — but that is a side issue here.
Grammatically, we must conclude that Barack Hussein Obama should not have been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. He clearly did not deserve it. As a Harvard Law School graduate, Mr. Obama must agree with these conclusions and as such, should have declined the award. That is not to say that he might qualify for it in the future; but that it yet to be seen. If someone were to sue the Nobel Prize Committee for wrongly executing Nobel’s will, they would be successful, according to the clear use of grammar.
Objective conclusion: Barack Obama did not deserve the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.
He should give it back.
BHO’s nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize was submitted within *12 days* after his inauguration! The Prize committee’s reason: “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.”
Former Peace Prize winner Mohamed ElBaradei said, “In less than a year in office, he has transformed the way we look at ourselves and the world we live in and rekindled hope for a world at peace with itself,” He has shown an unshakeable commitment to diplomacy, mutual respect and dialogue as the best means of resolving conflicts.”
In his 1895 will, Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, designated that the peace prize should go “to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between the nations and the abolition or reduction of standing armies and the formation and spreading of peace congresses.”
Wow, it looks like throwing your own country (and Israel) under the bus and sucking up to known terrorists qualifies you for being awarded the Prize!
That helps clarify why terrorist leader Yassir Arafat won the award in 1994.
Promise: If I’m ever awarded the Nobel Peace Prize — and based on my observations above, that will NEVER happen — I will decline accepting it. It’s no longer prestigious; instead, it’s meaningless.
Fox’s coverage seemed to be “fair and balanced”, while Olbermann was absolutely caustic in his coverage. I have never watched Countdown show. Over the past months I have heard Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin talk about Olbermann’s political bias and how it comes out in his show.
After hearing Rush Limbaugh attemtping to describe “teabagging” per the Urban Dictionary, I (unfortunately) looked up the definition on the ‘net last night. On a whim, I went to MSNBC’s site this morning and listened again to Olbermann’s coverage.
Having read the definition, I was absolutely disgusted with Olbermann’s voluminous couched references to the act in his coverage of the TEA parties. He was equally vulgar in his choice of comments by the TEA party participants that he twisted to make them appear to say things they were definitely NOT saying.
For this reason, TEA party supporters should do all they can to refuse to wear the label of “teabaggers” and assembling as “teabaggers”.
I don’t know why I should be amazed at this. However, it’s an answer to a prayer I’ve had for some time: Lord expose biases and connections.
I came across this on Desiring God’s Blog.
Food for thought, not just for Mr. Obama, but for the rest of us, as well.