Trenton Democrats need to read Andrew Sullivan

Trenton Democrats need to read Andrew Sullivan… and so do some Republicans.

Andrew Sullivan is a British-born American author, editor, and blogger. Sullivan is the former editor of The New Republic, a magazine founded in 1914 by leaders of the progressive movement.  Sullivan is the author or editor of six books and was a pioneer of the political blog, starting his in 2000. He eventually moved his blog to various publishing platforms, including Time, The Atlantic, The Daily Beast, and finally an independent subscription-based format. He announced his retirement from blogging in 2015.   Sullivan has been a writer-at-large at New York magazine since 2016.

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Sullivan is sometimes labeled a “conservative” because of his Roman Catholicism and his embrace of the ideas of the late, great political philosopher Michael Oakeshott.  Sullivan was a leader of the movement to legalize same-sex marriage. Wikipedia notes: “Born and raised in Britain he has lived in the United States since 1984 and currently resides in Washington, D.C., and Provincetown, Massachusetts. He is openly gay and a practicing Roman Catholic.”

His latest New York magazine column is brilliant.  It is called: “The Nature of Sex”.  An excerpt appears below…

It might be a sign of the end-times, or simply a function of our currently scrambled politics, but earlier this week, four feminist activists — three from a self-described radical feminist organization Women’s Liberation Front — appeared on a panel at the Heritage Foundation. Together they argued that sex was fundamentally biological, and not socially constructed, and that there is a difference between women and trans women that needs to be respected. For this, they were given a rousing round of applause by the Trump supporters, religious-right members, natural law theorists, and conservative intellectuals who comprised much of the crowd. If you think I’ve just discovered an extremely potent strain of weed and am hallucinating, check out the video of the event.

I’ve no doubt that many will see these women as anti-trans bigots, or appeasers of homophobes and transphobes, or simply deranged publicity seekers. (The moderator, Ryan Anderson, said they were speaking at Heritage because no similar liberal or leftist institution would give them space or time to make their case.) And it’s true that trans-exclusionary radical feminists or TERFs, as they are known, are one minority that is actively not tolerated by the LGBTQ establishment, and often demonized by the gay community. It’s also true that they can be inflammatory, offensive, and obsessive. But what interests me is their underlying argument, which deserves to be thought through, regardless of our political allegiances, sexual identities, or tribal attachments. Because it’s an argument that seems to me to contain a seed of truth. Hence, I suspect, the intensity of the urge to suppress it.

The title of the Heritage panel conversation — “The Inequality of the Equality Act” — refers to the main legislative goal for the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBTQ lobbbying group in the US. The proposed Equality Act — a federal nondiscrimination bill that has been introduced multiple times over the years in various formulations — would add “gender identity” to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, rendering that class protected by anti-discrimination laws, just as sex is. The TERF argument is that viewing “gender identity” as interchangeable with sex, and abolishing clear biological distinctions between men and women, is actually a threat to lesbian identity and even existence — because it calls into question who is actually a woman, and includes in that category human beings who have been or are biologically male, and remain attracted to women. How can lesbianism be redefined as having sex with someone who has a penis, they argue, without undermining the concept of lesbianism as a whole? “Lesbians are female homosexuals, women who love women,” one of the speakers, Julia Beck, wrote last December, “but our spaces, resources and communities are on the verge of extinction.”

If this sounds like a massive overreach, consider the fact that the proposed Equality Act — with 201 co-sponsors in the last Congress — isn’t simply a ban on discriminating against trans people in employment, housing, and public accommodations (an idea with a lot of support in the American public). It includes and rests upon a critical redefinition of what is known as “sex.” We usually think of this as simply male or female, on biological grounds (as opposed to a more cultural notion of gender). But the Equality Act would define “sex” as including “gender identity,” and defines “gender identity” thus: “gender-related identity, appearance, mannerisms, or characteristics, regardless of the individual’s designated sex at birth.”

What the radical feminists are arguing is that the act doesn’t only blur the distinction between men and women (thereby minimizing what they see as the oppression of patriarchy and misogyny), but that its definition of gender identity must rely on stereotypical ideas of what gender expression means. What, after all, is a “gender-related characteristic”? It implies that a tomboy who loves sports is not a girl interested in stereotypically boyish things, but possibly a boy trapped in a female body. And a boy with a penchant for Barbies and Kens is possibly a trans girl — because, according to stereotypes, he’s behaving as a girl would. So instead of enlarging our understanding of gender expression — and allowing maximal freedom and variety within both sexes — the concept of “gender identity” actually narrows it, in more traditional and even regressive ways. What does “gender-related mannerisms” mean, if not stereotypes? It’s no accident that some of the most homophobic societies, like Iran, for example, are big proponents of sex-reassignment surgery for gender-nonconforming kids and adults (the government even pays for it) while being homosexual warrants the death penalty. Assuming that a non-stereotypical kid is trans rather than gay is, in fact, dangerously close to this worldview. (Some might even see a premature decision to change a child’s body from one sex to another as a form of conversion therapy to “fix” his or her gayness. This doesn’t mean that trans people shouldn’t have the right to reaffirm their gender by changing their bodies, which relieves a huge amount of pressure for many and saves lives. But that process should entail a great deal of caution and discernment.)

The Equality Act also proposes to expand the concept of public accommodations to include “exhibitions, recreation, exercise, amusement, gatherings, or displays”; it bars any religious exceptions invoked under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993; and it bans single-sex facilities like changing, dressing, or locker rooms, if sex is not redefined to include “gender identity.” This could put all single-sex institutions, events, or groups in legal jeopardy. It could deny lesbians their own unique safe space, free from any trace of men. The bill, in other words, “undermines the fundamental legal groundwork for recognizing and combating sex-based oppression and sex discrimination against women and girls.”

… This is the deeply confusing and incoherent aspect of the entire debate. If you abandon biology in the matter of sex and gender altogether, you may help trans people live fuller, less conflicted lives; but you also undermine the very meaning of homosexuality. If you follow the current ideology of gender as entirely fluid, you actually subvert and undermine core arguments in defense of gay rights. “A gay man loves and desires other men, and a lesbian desires and loves other women,” explains Sky Gilbert, a drag queen. “This defines the existential state of being gay. If there is no such thing as ‘male’ or ‘female,’ the entire self-definition of gay identity, which we have spent generations seeking to validate and protect from bigots, collapses.” Contemporary transgender ideology is not a complement to gay rights; in some ways it is in active opposition to them.

And the truth is that many lesbians and gay men are quite attached to the concept of sex as a natural, biological, material thing. Yes, we are very well aware that sex can be expressed in many different ways. A drag queen and a rugby player are both biologically men, with different expressions of gender. Indeed, a drag queen can also be a rugby player and express his gender identity in a variety of ways, depending on time and place. But he is still a man. And gay men are defined by our attraction to our own biological sex. We are men and attracted to other men. If the concept of a man is deconstructed, so that someone without a penis is a man, then homosexuality itself is deconstructed. Transgender people pose no threat to us, and the vast majority of gay men and lesbians wholeheartedly support protections for transgender people. But transgenderist ideology — including postmodern conceptions of sex and gender — is indeed a threat to homosexuality, because it is a threat to biological sex as a concept.

You can access the entire article here:  

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/02/andrew-sullivan-the-nature-of-sex.html

Pastor Brad Winship: How to talk politics

We all know of that political hothead who can clear the room when he starts to talk politics.  God help us if we get caught in a conversation with him.  But our greater fear is what if we sound like him when we talk politics?  To improve our testimony for Christ, this week’s program begins a two part primer on developing good political conversation skills.

YouTube #62 – How to Talk Politics

Pastor Winship can be heard at the following times:

  Bridge Christian Radio - Sunday 9 pm
        89.7 FM - Monmouth / Ocean Counties, NJ
        91.9 FM - Middlesex/ Monmouth Counties, NJ
        95.1 FM - NYC
        103.1 FM - Metro New Jersey & NYC
        99.7 FM - Sullivan County, NY
        106.9 FM - Poughkeepsie, NY

WTTP-LP - Lima, Ohio  101.1. FM  - wttpfm.com - Saturday 12:30 am; Sunday at 3:30 pm

KKMC in Monterey County, CA - Saturday 9 AM and 7 PM

Listen anytime at http://godandcountryradio.org/   * Click on Program (Left click - The audio should begin playing) (Right click - To save to your computer or device) 

Join Pastor Winship's online at www.facebook.com/groups/godandcountryradio/

Murphy’s rape-justifiers are worse than Clinton’s…

Here is the usual and customary Democrat activist during the Kavanaugh hearings…

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And the same Democrat activist during the hearings into how Governor Murphy mishandled the sexual assault of a young woman campaign staffer…

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Any Questions?

Democrats are so obsessed with Ass, they forgot about WWI

World War One… the Great War… the War to End All Wars… ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.  Yes, what came to be known as Armistice Day – later Veterans Day – had its 100th Anniversary on November 11, 2018.

The New Jersey Legislature didn’t notice it.  They must have forgotten about the estimated 40 million people who died… among them 116,708 American soldiers, sailors, and marines.  Another 757 American civilians died. 204,009 American military personnel were wounded.

The Democrats who run the Legislature said piss on the dead… piss on the military, on the veterans… we have Ass, what more do we need?

Tomorrow, January 31st, the Assembly will be voting on AJR-160, a resolution commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI.  This resolution was introduced on September 27, 2018 and could have been passed before Veterans Days – in time for the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day!

Instead, the Democrats were too busy with transgendered this or that and special deals for people based on who they choose to bed down with or what gender they want to call themselves that day.  They were too busy to take a vote to remember their war dead.

The VFW is right when they said:  “There is no excuse for a vote on this bill to be delayed until 81 days after the day we commemorate the sacrifices of America's veterans.  It is shameful that laws can be fast tracked to give folks in the country illegally free college and legal representation but a day honoring veterans is put on the back burner.”

As recently as this past December, the New Jersey Assembly Education Committee heard testimony for an unfunded mandate to require that all school districts in all grades teach – not about WWI – but about the “contributions” of people based on who they sleep with.  The Democrats even brought in what they claimed to be a “transgendered 11-year-old” and behaved as if this troubled child was some sort of side-show. The Democrats applauded and congratulated the child – lauding the minor’s behavior as an act of “bravery” while casually forgetting the bravery of the 4.7 million Americans who served in World War One.

The VFW notes:

“As of January 15, 2019 there have been approximately 400 veteran & military affairs bills presented in the current NJ Legislature.  In the past 13 months only four bills have been signed into law:

P.L.2018, JR.10.  Designates October 3rd of each year as "Sergeant Dominick Pilla and Corporal Jamie Smith Day" in New Jersey. Approved 10/3/2018. (SJR75/AJR129)

 P.L.2018, c.77.  Requires public utility to charge veterans' organization residential rate for service delivered to property at which veterans' organization primarily operates. Approved 8/10/2018. (A837/S2446)

 P.L.2018, c.78 Revises law concerning reciprocity for out-of-State professional and occupational licenses. Approved 8/10/2018.

 P.L.2018, c.149. Makes General Fund supplemental appropriation of $250,000 to New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program, Inc. Approved 2/17/2018. (A4315/S2839)” 

The VFW has been advocating get the Senate and Assembly to vote on the following:

A832 Extends Class Two special law enforcement training for time deployed. Reported out of Assembly Military & Veterans’ Affairs Committee, 2nd Reading 9/17/2018.

 A2550 Permits certain health care professionals to waive health insurance copayments for members of military serving on active duty. Reported from Assembly Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee with Amendments, 2nd Reading 9/17/2018.

 A3093 Waives boat safety course requirement for veterans and active duty members of military with maritime training. Reported from Assembly Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee with Amendments, 2nd Reading 1/24/2019.

 AJR11 Designates fourth week of March of each year as "Military Caregivers Week." Reported from Assembly Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee, 2nd Reading 6/14/2018.

 AR85 Urges Congress enact Military Surviving Spouses Equity Act. Reported from Assembly Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee, 2nd Reading 10/18/2018.

 AR163 Urges United States Congress to pass legislation to automatically enroll veterans for benefits they are entitled to in United States Department of Veterans Affairs system. Reported from Assembly Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee, 2nd Reading 10/18/2018. 

S915 Permits certain portion of municipal development trust funds to be spent on housing affordability assistance to veterans.

SCR120 Urges Congress to enact reforms addressing sexual harassment and assault in United States Armed Forces.

Let’s hope that the Democrats who control the New Jersey Legislature start showing at least the same attention to American veterans – those who are defined by their military service to the Republic – as they lavish upon those who define themselves by their sexual preferences.

Dawn Addiego exchanges one machine for another.

Dawn Marie Addiego has always been a cosseted politician.  Depending on others to lay out a path for her.  To brush the impediments from her way.

Hence, from her earliest days she was attracted to establishment politicians and powerful political machines.  The old Burlco GOP machine of Glenn Paulsen worked for her – and in return for her exact fealty and obedience she rose through its ranks.  Now, with the patrimony of Paulsen squandered by others, the Senator set adrift, she has looked for and found a new powerful political machine to protect her.

Engaging, charming, tough – but pleasant – her insecurities have led her to changing one party for another.  Of course, her attempt to define her switch as maintaining some core affinity for the Republican Party of Ronald Reagan is total nonsense.  As Senator Addiego well knows, she has never been comfortable with the Republican electorate and the political platform of the national Republican Party… not since Ronald Reagan changed it in 1980.  In this, she has remained in lockstep with the establishment GOP in Burlington County.

Lacking a Republican message – unable to embrace, motivate, and lead Republicans and those who are open to voting for Republicans – Senator Addiego reasoned that she had no choice but to become a Democrat.  Now she should look to the fate of Arlen Specter and know that she may be called to account, like Specter was, by the “purer” elements within her new party.  Her hope must be that powerful men will protect her.  Her faith… must look to her new bosses.

Some weeks ago, we explained how both major parties are really each three separate parties all occupying the same space and seeking to speak for the same “brand”. 

(1) There is the broad “party” defined by formal “membership” (voter registration, etc.), self-identification, or electoral support.  These people have some idea of what the party brand means and they like candidates to adhere to it.  They like to get what they think they are voting for.

(2) Next is the activist base.  These people are motivated by a particular issue or set of issues (or by a candidate who serves as the vessel for such).  Some organize themselves to great effectiveness.  Many are organized permanently and have established themselves as genuine powers.  Others can be motivated in the right season, on a case by case basis.  The most successful are able to create enough activity to earn a living from their activism (essentially, they are paid for their leadership).

(3) Finally we have the “professional” party – the regulars.  Broadly speaking, they are paid or make money from politics, whether as attorneys, vendors, lobbyists, elected officials, appointed officials, patronage employees, political consultants, legislative staff, and such.  They are transactional and make money through or directly from politics – that is the big difference between them and the broader party. 

The story of Dawn Marie Addiego wouldn’t be complete without an exposition of the role played by this “professional” party – and its corruption.

Leave it to David “Wally Edge” Wildstein to annotate the role played by lobbyist Jeff Michaels… once a captain in the regime of Republican Senate President Donnie DiFrancesco, now part of the far-flung empire of Democrat Party boss George Norcross.  According to Wildstein, editor at the New Jersey Globe, Michaels played a key role in negotiating Addiego’s party switch.

Those of us who remember the young Jeff Michaels – then a stalwart Republican, YAFer, and religious conservative – will sadly recall when he left being a legislative staffer for a lobbying gig that led him down the path of… money.  We lost a great compatriot and mammon gained a very effective advocate.  Of course, such is the world. 

We wonder what will become of District 8 Chief of Staff Rick England, a lieutenant in the DiFrancesco operation, who once answered to Michaels.  Will he follow his Senator?  Rick ran the District 8 office and controlled it very closely.  He knows the sins of all he served which, given the circumstances, could be of benefit to the Assembly Democrats this year… or SRM in 2021.  So in thrall was Senator Addiego to her handler that she refused to meet with a bi-partisan delegation of religious leaders regarding the Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Prevention Act, simply because Rick would not sign off on it.  Such is the power he held at the District 8 Legislative Office.

So we can see how the concerns of each of these three separate parties all occupying the same space and seeking to speak for the same “brand” can be very different.  While the first two want candidates who will represent some set of principles, the concerns of the “professional” party can often come down to… dough-re-me. 

At the “professional” party level, this can lead to a certain “blending” of the two major parties.  And that, of course, leads to an estrangement from the base.