8-19-2016 8-53-01 AMThe United States of America is one of God’s greatest gifts to humanity. Such a declaration is belittled in a culture shaped by the left leaning mainstream media. Many don’t really know why America is particularly special. America, unlike many sovereign countries before her, developed a value system that allowed man to earn his success justly, even after failure. Society has grown to be impatient, and wants success and justice like it wants its popcorn- nuked to perfection. They don’t realize they are killing both.

America’s Declaration of Independence clearly expresses the condition of man. The founding fathers understood that man is inclined to suffer under tyranny rather than justify the cost of freedom. Their reference comes from the Judeo-Christian viewpoint. God made man with the ability to endure his mistakes, and with mercy, excel. Twentieth century dictators took advantage of man’s condition in order to murder millions. Socialist dictatorships regulated man’s capability to advance. When a government becomes a god with no standard for liberty, one is left with tyranny.

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Secularists assert that because Americans and Christians fail, their beliefs are morally inferior. Similar to how one can’t judge a religion completely by its followers; one can’t judge a nation merely by its citizens. The fundamental beliefs and the law that governs a religion or a nation are where one should investigate.

Man is flawed. Absolute morality exists. But, an ideal theocracy is impossible. Theocracies attempt to legislate morality to the point of implosion. Secularists aim to peddle to humanity the philosophy of relative ethics, which invariably fails. The religious community can’t debate ethics independently from God, and looks unintelligent. What is to be done? Defend nature. Nature has an order, a value system that requires respect and perpetuation. When the left carelessly removes a proven element of nature from a social system, the system begins to fail. Every issue the left touches regresses.

Natural law is like a game of Jenga. Conservatives and classic Liberals (or Libertarians) want to leave the structure alone. Leftists want to play with it. They pull the blocks, and cause undue stress on the blocks below. They could just put the block back, but instead they replace it with a Lego piece. The leftists see the structure begin to fail, and they frame conservatives as bad for doing little to nothing. Conservatives just want the left to put the block back.

All of history gives reference to what will either advance or devastate a civilization. Natural law requires reason, logic, and integrity. Omission and substitution weaken the outcome. The left wants to substitute natural law with shamelessness and meaninglessness in every facet of society. They assert; man doesn’t need determination, women don’t need connection, children don’t need parents, sex doesn’t need sacredness, education doesn’t need truth, art doesn’t need talent, business doesn’t need profit, justice doesn’t need a jury, and religion doesn’t need a God.

Perhaps C.S. Lewis expressed it best when he stated in Pilgrim’s Regress, “You don’t know the difference between what nature has meant for nourishment, and what it meant for garbage.”

The Roman Empire was just short of glorious. English historian, Edward Gibbon, summed up the empire’s decay in five major arguments: breakdown of the family, paganism, high taxation, government expansion, and excess of pleasure.

Germany was the most enlightened European country in the late 19th and early 20th century. The country’s decline shows similarities to the Roman Empire’s fall: collectivism, high taxation, expansion of government, censorship of religion, and elevation of men.

The first 10 amendments of the Constitution make it nearly impossible for a central leader to strip any individual of their natural, God-given liberty.

One of our founding fathers, John Adams writes, “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution… Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

For current social justice warriors to allege that the United States is fundamentally, institutionally, and systematically discriminatory would be an illogical lie. Individuals may discriminate to the point of violating others, but the system is not inferior, the individual is. Simply because an individual discriminates doesn’t mean their liberty can automatically be violated. The system corrects social/economic disorder naturally, in keeping with Nature’s law.
By: Rosemary Dewar

To The Left, To The Left

8-5-2016 11-12-36 AMRecent weeks have exposed an apex of social discontentment the left has cultivated for decades. Cultural despair has been unjustifiably magnified to represent evidence of disparity. There has not been a sub-culture, created by the left, which has gone untouched. Proponents of leftist politics have become the very victims of its regressive philosophy. It is impossible for those who live by this ideology to receive the support they have been promised.

Living under the influence of leftist-style politics is depressing. Circumstances never resolve, either because of someone else, or something else. Disparity is expressed as unavoidable and incurable, like a chronic auto-immune disease. It eventually eats itself, attacking every moral fiber from the inside-out.
Sounds like a reality TV show or a primetime teenage drama sitcom. Racism, sexism, and capitalism, oh my!

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The left looks to cultivate a particular set of skills aimed to fuse cultural intolerance with conservatism. They sell the perception that conservatives do not care to help those who are facing sincere hardship. That alluring song and dance is only a seduction.

By contrast, believing the proverb, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime,” only strengthens the conservative narrative. The left just wants to keep handing out fish in order to keep them dependent on the system they claim we all need. Simply insert a service the left promises to give its supporters: healthcare, education, working-wage, housing, living assistance, affirmative action, etc.

How does the left plan to hand over that fish? Only by democratically stealing from those who have learned to fish for themselves. This is grim indeed.

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One of the greatest examples of despair is Joseph Stalin’s Russia in the 1930’s. Stalin was systematically slaughtering his people. He was asked by an American journalist how long he expected his travesty to last. Stalin stopped and demanded one of his cooks to bring him a live chicken. He clutched the chicken tight to his side, and proceeded to wrench the feathers off the chicken while it squirmed and screeched in absolute agony. Stalin laid the bare bird on the floor, took a handful of grain from his pocket, set the feed at his feet, and the chicken hobbled to between Stalin’s legs and began to eat the gain. Stalin responded, “The people have need of many things that we are now giving them… Did you see how that chicken followed me for food, even though I had caused it such torture? People are like that chicken. If you inflict inordinate pain on them, they will follow you for food the rest of their lives.”

To expect any other result from a system that feeds on a fabricated disparity, one must be prepared for that system to feed on its followers.

Despair is different for everyone. Leftists exploit the individuality of that experience to isolate its enthusiasts. They are put in box in order to manage them, and pit them against another sub-group. Each “box label” varies from origin to proclivity. The responsibility of inequality is projected on an opposing group, and the left’s answer is to democratically take from one in order to reward the other. This progression is fundamentally immoral.

Our own government’s history holds illustrations of collectivist procedures: segregation, government assisted living, immigration incentives, environmental regulation, universal healthcare, etc. Each government action was narrated and executed by leftists. From President Woodrow Wilson to President Lyndon B. Johnson, the same destructive policies have been carried over to our current administration.

As long as the left devises ways to function as both the disease and the treatment (the problem and the solution), their philosophy will permanently fail its followers.
By: Rosemary Dewar

7-16-2016 9-35-18 AMPoliticians are often deemed the modern-day equivalent of the tax-collectors who were loathed in the Bible, and it is the religious community which is to blame. Religious revivals had political implications, specifically in our western culture. The human rights prescribed by God were, and still are, worth defining and defending.

Every week, pastors and teachers encourage their congregations to take back the culture for righteousness sake. They exclaim, “Become an artist, an entrepreneur, a doctor, or an executive!” Remarkably, the calling to rise as a politician is under-emphasized or disregarded.

Essentially they are saying, “We will pray for them, but don’t even think of becoming one.”

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Grave mistake.

The God they claim to worship has given, promised, and endowed specific, irrevocable, and inalienable rights to all. This inarguable aspect of our history goes unacknowledged. The United States, from its inception, had men who jeopardized all comforts to define, defend, and die for those rights.

From the birth of Protestantism to England’s Golden Age, men fought to represent themselves before God.

From George Whitfield’s Great Awakening of Evangelism to the birth of United States of America, men fought to represent every man spiritually or socially.

Each conflict resulted in governmental reconstruction, followed by a period of persecution. The fight was both expected and welcomed. Religious freedom, self-determination, and the liberty to pursue both were paramount. Tolerance of an authoritarian rule was not an option.

What made the Charismatic religious movement different? There was no sacrifice. There was only a virtuous rebellion in response to hedonistic rebellion. The movement was devoid of political reinforcement or result. War was the buzzword of the ‘60s through the ‘80s and was culturally interpreted as the outgrowth of hatred or cruelty. The honor gained through war was lost. Having a human right worth preserving at any cost was not only diminished, it was extinguished.

The West’s religious community lost its narrative to refrain from evil, just as America lost its determination to combat acts of evil. Dehumanization became socially acceptable as long as it was self-inflicted. Political disputes ranging from collectivism to sexual liberation were then acquiesced to, and now have been surrendered as the result of a powerless, counterfeit morality.

God’s mandated standards for humanity are persistently being chipped away. The imposition of a loosely enlightened morality is created by those who in reality are closet authoritarians. They will selectively protect those who are willing to compromise their principles in order to gain a false sense of security. It must be recognized that it is impossible to protect a thing that is relinquished.

The rights of humanity have been fought for man-to-man, idea-to-idea, for centuries. The cause has been to secure what God commanded His creation to possess. Fundamentally, the struggle will never change. Americans must be willing to get back onto the battlefield of ideas and ideals. The United States of America won on that battlefield, and if it is going to survive, must be willing to risk fighting to defend those principles again.

America’s religious community knows their rights because they believe God, but they have forgotten how to defend them. God has given them a country with a decree to treat man the way God has continually, and will endlessly treat man. They are unaware of the gift that the United States truly is in comparison to every other country on Earth.

American politics was fashioned to defend religious expression. To see the Western religious community secure in its convictions is to see a government assured in its liberty. America is asking itself the question it did 240 years ago, which is, “Are you willing to live without your rights, or die with them?’’

One of our founding fathers, Samuel Adams, said, “The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil constitution, are worth defending against all hazards: And it is our duty to defend them against all attacks.”

Do you agree?

You ought to.

There is good news, other than the ‘Good News’. Pastors have heard the call. Hundreds are campaigning across the country. Offices such as city council, mayor, school board, commissioner, governor, and representative are being fought for to be filled by God-respected men and women. That is how it is done.

Godspeed, America.

You’re going to need it.
By: Rosemary Dewar

3-20-2015 9-44-07 AMIn today’s world, many teenagers center their attention on the opinions of others. They worry about whether they are too fat or too skinny or too tall or too short, and they constantly think about what people are thinking about them. While asking themselves: “What does everyone think of me?” they fail to ask themselves: “What do I think of me?”

Oftentimes, teenagers, and even adults, place tremendous pressure on each other to do this or say that or go here or wear that, which causes a person to make a choice between conforming to people’s expectations and being accepted, or standing their ground and becoming subject to the criticism that follows. When forced to make this choice, many will choose to succumb to the pressure and join the crowd. A minority, however, will hold their ground and stay true to who they are. We should strive to break the mold and join this minority.

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Although I am homeschooled, I too have been faced with many of the same dilemmas as other teens. I have to choose whether to be moral or be profane. I have to make a choice not to use foul language. I have to make the decision to never use drugs or drink alcohol if I am presented with them. All of these are examples of things a teenager is often faced with. If they are leaning towards making the correct choice, others will often pressure them into making the wrong one they themselves have already made. In an effort to be accepted, that person will make the wrong choice too.

The choices a person makes early on will affect them for the rest of their life. For this reason, we should try to make the moral choice that will bring about a positive effect on our lives. Religious people like myself should seek answers in the Bible and follow God’s standards, not the world’s. God’s opinion of us and our opinion of ourselves should really be the only two opinions that matter. We should not focus on what others think of us. We should try to make ourselves and God proud, not our peers. We should respect the opinions of others, but we should not live by them.

Not everyone believes in God, however. People who do not follow the Biblical standard should rely on what they have been taught was right. It may not always be correct, but if they stick to what they have learned, then they have stayed true to themselves.

If we follow what we know is right, what our parents have taught us to be right, or what the Bible has taught us, we will be able to make better choices and be ourselves. We will not feel like we are forced to conform to everyone else’s ideas of how we should act, or what we should look like, or how we should live our lives. We will be happier if we can just be ourselves, break the mold, and be different. Being different from the status quo is a good thing! God made us all different, so we should embrace it and encourage others to be different, too.
By: Hunter Rogers

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2014-04-04_14-48-37We’ve all been talking about how in today’s world kids are getting more violent because of video games, movies, music, etc. I am here to voice my opinions and I am honored that Athens Now is allowing me to do so.

The first thing I would like to address is video games. Video games are becoming a target on showing kids things they shouldn’t be seeing or doing. I believe that you as the parent should know that video games aren’t for everyone anymore like they were in the 80s. There are video games for everyone from kids to adults and they have a rating system called the ESRB. This rating system is much like that of movies. On every video game box, usually located in the bottom left corner, there’s a letter telling you what it’s rated. Also, on the back in the bottom right corner, is typically a description of why it’s rated that.

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The letters are C, E, E 10+, T, and M. C is for children and appropriate for 3 year olds. E would be like a G rated movie. E 10+ would be a PG rated movie. T would be PG-13 and M would be similar to an R-rated movie. If you wouldn’t let your kids see an R-rated movie, then you probably shouldn’t let them play an M-rated video game. For more information on the rating system, visit www.esrb.org.

The second thing I would like to address is music. Parents, please pay attention to what music your kids are listening to. In today’s music, no matter what genre, (Country, Rap, Hip-Hop, Rock, or Metal) there’s good and bad lyrics. Most bands have lyrics demonstrating how badly he/she wants to kill someone or how he/she wants to get drunk and/or high on drugs to get away from their problems, or how badly they want to have sex. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard these lyrics sung in every type of music. So please pay more attention to what the bands are singing, and not just about what they sound like.

I also would like to say that none of these forms of entertainment should be fully blamed for today’s violence. If that were the case, I would like to blame the history books for teaching kids how they could be violent. Kids could get ideas on torture and whatever else from those as well. Let’s face it: there’s always going to be violence. If you want to put all the blame of today’s issues on video games, music, movies, etc., then I guess Hitler must have somehow played a violent video game, watched a movie or heard song and got the idea from that to kill the Jews. I mean come on, don’t put all of the blame on any one thing.

This leads me to the final thing I would like to address. Kids could come up with the ideas of violent behavior from their parents, brothers, sisters, friends, or people in general. How are you the dealing with your problems? People, no matter how young or classic (no likes to be called “old”), are living and basing their lives on examples that their mom and dad were/are like, what their brothers and sisters were/are like, what their home is/was like, what morals they live/lived by. Are you a violent person yourself? Are you always talking about how badly you would like to do something to someone, or how badly you would like to see someone get hurt or have their feelings hurt? Are you drinking away your problems? You might need to take a look at yourself and see what kind of example you are setting for your kids.
By: Hunter Williams

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We’re Southerners. Winter or not, we would never guess that we were going to wake up to a snowstorm. Athens suffered broken pipes and frozen fingers, but, bizarrely enough, it was much worse south and east of us.

2014-02-07_14-55-19After the tornadoes came through on April 27th, 2011, some people lost the meat in their freezers, a few days of work, and the ability to refill at the local pump. Others lost their homes, their property, and many, their lives.

There is a tendency to blame someone else. There always is. Granted, it’s a little hard to blame a tornado on anyone. It happened, and while we can beg for money from the government or complain to our neighbors, it’s not exactly anyone’s fault.

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A tornado is sudden and unexpected. A snowstorm, on the other hand, lends itself to scapegoats.

Governors, mayors, weather forecasters; on every level someone was finding someone to blame. “We should have been told, we should have been warned,” people said. I guess we should have had the governor issue an ultimatum with a curfew, restraining regular citizens from their superfluous schooling and working and driving. Just in case we…what, woke up to snow?

Blogger Brian Barrett, in a post that went viral, put it best. “Waking up in Birmingham to snow,” he said, “is like waking up in New Hampshire to quicksand.”

“They took a gamble,” says Al Roker, a television personality at NBC, who – incidentally – has never lived south of the Mason-Dixon. “They didn’t want to pre-treat the roads; I don’t think they wanted to spend the money and do what they needed to.”

Which is probably correct. If he wanted to ship some trucks from New York – you know, the kind that “pre-treat” the roads (I’m Southern, I don’t even know what that means), he could have saved all those people from what turned into a horrible disaster.

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Children stuck in schools and on buses, snarled traffic, and lives put at risk is no joke. But that doesn’t mean we have to locate a target to throw rotten tomatoes at.

If mistakes are made, they need to be set right. Governor Nathan Deal of Georgia took an impressive and unprecedented stand when he stated, “I’m not looking for a scapegoat. I am the governor. The buck stops with me.”

Regardless of our proven ability to blame a politician for the weather, it makes far more sense to make sure that we, personally, are prepared for when disaster strikes.

Spend the money, take the time, and make sure you have bottled water in the closet, flashlights with fresh batteries in the drawer, and extra coats and/or blankets in your car trunk.

We live in the age of the Internet. We can watch a weather radar just as well as the meteorologist on television. The question is not whether we’re informed, it’s what are we going to do with that information?
By: Melissa Kirby

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