Only one Cecil, but 1.3 billion slaughtered babies

I sit sadly hearing about the tragic death of Cecil the African lion, quietly sipping tea, until I am interrupted by another news report about “babi …” (Oops, almost said “babies”) “fetus” parts being sold for cash, and medical research, by Planned Parenthood.

It brought to mind prior reports I’ve seen, such as:

“The remains of 17 babies in medical Ziploc bags – with their mothers’ names labeled on the outside – were found in a dumpster at a Woman’s Choice abortion clinic in Lansing, Michigan. (Under current Michigan law, these aborted babies and other biohazard waste can be placed in the trash as long as they are dipped in formaldehyde beforehand.)”


“In Lufkin, Texas, a 19-year-old man was convicted of murder after being found guilty of stomping on a mother’s stomach, at her request (she was carrying twins). Interestingly enough, though she had asked for his help, she was not prosecuted because ‘she could have had the same result by paying for an abortion.’”

Silly me! I was more outraged when I read the two above news stories than I was while being inundated with TV reports about Cecil the lion being killed by a dentist. Here was “poor Cecil” (himself a hunter who exercised his “right to choose” and killed other live animals for food) being killed by another hunter. Plus, the killer of Cecil used another dead animal to trick him into coming within range of his weapon. So, what about the animal that was killed to lure Cecil within range of the hunter? (Probably just some poor, unfortunate antelope.) Are we not upset about him, too?

Zimbabwe (along with some of our illustrious Hollywood celebrities) is now demanding that the “murderer of Cecil” be extradited and punished for his “crime.” I agree that Cecil was a magnificent creature. It is, indeed, a shame he was recklessly killed for no good reason. But really – we need to get some perspective here.

We now have a federally funded killing machine reaching unspeakable heights of depravity by not just killing babies at any and every stage of development, but selling their parts to the highest bidder. This is a mind bender.

We are having high-decibel national discourse about the fact that Planned Parenthood is selling baby body parts, yet we are unmoved that they are killing the “baby people” in the first place. And on top of that, everyone is enraged about a dead lion. A lion – not a human being! What is wrong with this picture?!

Babies are not some zygote/morula/blastocyst/embryo/fetus thingee inside a pregnant woman. A “fetus” is conveniently not identified as “human” – which makes it easy to debate away the “right to live” argument for the woman’s “right to choose” option. However, a woman’s “right to choose” legally permits something even more horrendous than the killing of Cecil; it is called a “partial-birth abortion.”

For the unenlightened minority, a partial-birth abortion is a procedure in which the abortionist pulls a living baby feet-first out of the womb and into the birth canal (vagina), except for the head, which the abortionist purposely keeps lodged just inside the cervix (the opening to the womb). The abortionist punctures the base of the baby’s skull with a surgical instrument, such as a long surgical scissors or a pointed hollow metal tube called a trochar. He then inserts a catheter (tube) into the wound and removes the baby’s brain with a powerful suction machine. This causes the skull to collapse, after which the abortionist completes the delivery of the now-dead baby.”

Will someone please explain to me the difference between removing a baby via C-section, where they enable it to live, and a partial-birth abortion, where they terminate a fetus? In both cases, the “thing” is out of the womb, so please tell me, what is the difference?!

Scientifically proven techniques, developed in the mid-1990s dealing with DNA, “have proven that each human being is totally unique immediately at fertilization [conception]. A human being at an embryonic age and that [same] human being at an adult age are … the same; the biological differences are due only to … maturity. Science has further discovered that the human being is fully programmed for human growth and development for his or her entire life at the age of one cell.”

Hmmm, as I ponder the tragedy of Cecil, it almost makes me wonder: Should I be as upset about the 6,828,378 abortions by Planned Parenthood since 1970, or the 58,128,431 abortions in the U.S. since Roe vs. Wade (thus far) as I am about Cecil?

Then, on the other hand, since Cecil is an international figure, should the worldwide figure of 1,343,355,594 (and counting) abortions since 1980 be of concern to me? And, since Cecil was from Africa, killed by an American, what about the almost 18 million African-American babies aborted since 1973?

Should I be upset? I guess not. After all, there was only one Cecil.

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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What? More stories in the news about “police brutality”?

I, for one, am so tired of hearing how cops are out of control. Let me propose a simple solution that will simply and permanently eliminate “police brutality.” This proposal would apply equally to all local, state and federal law enforcement officials. It would immediately and permanently eliminate all traces of racism and allow for all crimes to be reported equally, regardless of perpetrator.

This solution would affect almost every American citizen regardless of age, race, creed, financial or religious status. In addition, it would literally save billions of dollars currently being spent on police forces, courts and prisons, and eliminate any hint of concern regarding capital punishment.

The solution? Abolish all laws, and eliminate the police departments.

Since there would be no laws to break, there would be no need for police enforcement. Additionally, courts would be abolished because there would be no laws to interpret. Without laws to be broken, there would be no need for prisons because there would be no criminals to incarcerate.

We could do away with all these stupid laws about how fast we can drive; hey, if my car will do 120 mph and I want to “put the pedal to the metal,” why not? Why can’t I park anywhere and everywhere I choose and take whatever I want whenever, from wherever and whomever I want? After all, why should my liberties be circumscribed just because you disagree with what I want to do?

I mean, whose idea was it to implement laws in the first place? (I know I didn’t have anything to do with most of the laws that govern my behavior.) Why should I be held in check, and kept from doing what I want to do, just because you disagree with it? Anyway, who says the guys who passed those laws to begin with were right? Since I may disagree with them, why should I be restrained by some people I never met or heard of?

You know, we have to keep in mind – not everybody wants to live like you think they should. They have their own ideas of how life ought to be lived. I mean, after all, you probably would not like to have some Middle East concept of “morality” about how to treat women forced on you by the “powers that be.” And, didn’t we just read about some guys in the Middle East and Africa raping a group of young girls? So, what’s wrong with grabbing some “hot babe” and dragging her into an alley and “taking care of business”? And why is everybody jumping on Bill Cosby just because he “worked out” with some babes? “So what? If you don’t agree with it, then just don’t do it, but why should you try to impose your opinion on somebody else just because you disagree?”

Since it is manifestly obvious that many disagree with certain laws, they would now be free to operate according to the dictates of “conscience.” Just imagine, everyone being able to do exactly what they want, the way they want. So what if what they want interferes with your right to live life the way you want? I mean, after all, isn’t freedom all about everybody being able to do whatever they want, any way they want?

We could implement the concept articulated in the book of Judges contained in the Bible. At one stage in the development of the nation of Israel, such a concept was in force. It was stated thusly; “Every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Can’t you just visualize the liberty and freedoms available to every person under that concept? Of course, it led to some serious interpersonal problems, but what the heck, “If it feels good do it,” right?

Or have we missed something here?

You recognize, of course, the tongue-in-cheek aspect of the preceding. We are, and should be, held responsible for our actions. Absent such accountability, We the People would be lost to our own self-ascribed concepts of “freedom,” as others who have gone before.

Could it be that “law enforcement” was/is designed to provide the maximum amount of protection to the greatest number of people? What is the definition of “law enforcement”? Why do we have emergency 9-1-1? How do we define “illegal”? Based on what? Shouldn’t citizens be required to obey the laws of the land?

The laws of the land governing most of Western civilization, and America in particular, are based on the Judeo-Christian precepts articulated in the Bible. These laws are designed to provide maximum liberty and protection to the greatest number of people.

Could it be that the amazing world-renowned institution known as the “United States of America” owes its world leadership and world-emulated individual freedoms to such founding concepts as: “What is liberty without virtue? It is madness, without restraint” (Edmund Burke, Founding Father).

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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I think the P5+1 diplomats who “negotiated” the treaty with Iran may have set the world on a path that will almost certainly lead to one or more fierce battles in the Middle East and possibly set the stage for World War III. Lest some think I am overstating the case, allow me inform some and remind others of an event that occurs annually in Israel.

Every year on a particular day in April, across the nation of Israel, sirens sound for two minutes and everything comes to a halt. Vehicles in cities and small towns, on streets and highways, pull over and stop. Drivers and passengers get out and stand by their vehicles with heads bowed. Six million Jews – children in school, workers, farmers, homemakers – all pause to solemnly observe Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day.

One of the main lessons learned by the Jewish nation from the Holocaust is that … it must defend itself. This concept is one of the fundamental ethos of Israel’s Defense Forces. IDF (Israeli Defense Force) soldiers gather and stand at a ceremony held at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum, located in Jerusalem. Standing … with their heads bowed, IDF soldiers bear the memory of the Holocaust and vow: “Never Again!” It is an interesting parallel that six million Jews were killed in the Holocaust, and the present population of Israel is roughly six million.

Why would anyone think the Israelis will sit quietly by while Iran – which regularly hosts anti-Israel demonstrations and whose “spiritual leader” has denied Israel’s right to exist – attains nuclear weapons? This is especially true in light of the fact that sanctions and other elements had almost brought Iran to its knees. Iran was/is on the verge of collapse, but now, thanks to this agreement (not treaty), billions of dollars are going to suddenly flow into its coffers in exchange for it doing nothing.

A major problem today is that people simply cannot conceive of living side by side every day with someone who has sworn to kill them. Try to imagine living beside people who almost daily launch rockets into your cities, forcing you to run for your life. It is even more difficult for Americans, who have no concept of war on our shores – since the last war fought on American soil was 154 years ago. (While Sept. 11 was shocking and put some of us on guard for a while, it is now “history” and many millennials have little, if any, concern about it.)

Try and imagine what it would be like if several times a month, or worse yet, daily, someone who had sworn to kill you launched an attack against your neighborhood or home. What would your reaction be? What would your opinion be of a police department who only asked questions when you dialed 9-1-1? Or so-called “friends” who consistently stood against your right to purchase a gun to defend your family? How many of you would simply bow your head and wait patiently for a person who had sworn to kill you and your family to attain arms and arrive, ready to shoot?

Not to overstate the issue, but I think it is a grave mistake of the most serious order to think Israel is going to sit idly by while Iran develops a nuclear weapon. In support of those statements, remember, Israel has already attacked and destroyed two nuclear reactor sites, Iraq’s and Syria’s. Most realize, as does Israel, the potential for a massive response, but even Saudi Arabia is among those Muslim nations quietly supporting Israel. They are fully aware that a nuclear-armed Iran would present an immediate and ongoing danger to the entire Middle East. Israel is not going to hesitate in taking out Iran’s nuclear capability, regardless of the consequences.

Life does not have the same measure of value to certain groups: Sunnis and Shias are both Muslim groups, but they do not hesitate to kill one another. If they would not refrain from killing fellow Muslims, does anyone think for a moment they would hesitate killing “infidels”?

Col. Oliver North, who recently returned from Israel, said this regarding the Israelis and the West’s recent agreement with Iran: “Here’s the bottom line: In Israel, the words ‘never again’ and ‘never forget’ are not political slogans. They mean it.”

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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According to the recent Supreme Court decision, “We the People” are now being forced to accept a particular type of sexual behavior, as it is now the “law of the land.” And all this time I thought the Constitution said, Congress (not the Court) shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.Aren’t the courts supposed to interpret (not write) laws?

Can someone please do a favor for me and define “right” and wrong?

Do we even have universal standards for right and wrong today? If so, what are they based on? Who and what determines whether or not something violates those concepts? Is it wrong to murder someone? Steal from people? Lie about people? Is it all simply a matter of public opinion?

For the most part, a majority of people reading this would agree that certain things like disrespecting your parents, murder, stealing, adultery or lying is wrong. We have laws against most of these and court cases, lawyers, judges, etc., to ensure we do not get away with same. Why?

One of the first things I learned as a child was the difference between right and wrong. “Ben, don’t lie, steal or cheat; that’s wrong.” I also learned there were consequences for violating the rules or standards established by parents and other authority figures. It was called “punishment,” and it ranged from mild, (privileges restricted, sitting or standing in the corner) to “severe” (a spanking).

It used to be that violations of the aforementioned standards were enforced in the family and across the entire African-American community. “R-e-s-p-e-c-t” was not just a song sung by an R&B artist, but a concept implemented by all, and especially children toward adults. For violating any of these community standards, a child could be spanked by a responsible adult and sent home with a note of explanation. Depending on the severity of the “crime,” many children could receive additional disciplining. (As a point of information, the party administering the initial punishment would, in church Sunday, if not sooner, advise the parent of the actions taken against the “perpetrator.” And woe unto the child who had not delivered the note reporting the incident.)

However, apparently the times, they are a-changin’. Today, there seem to be no community standards of morality that are applicable to all. The present modus operandi is “every man for himself” or the old familiar phrase, “If it feels good, do it.”

Here is a question for you. Which person is the least dead: one killed by first, second or third-degree murder or manslaughter? Killing a person today is not simply murder; apparently it depends on the circumstances.

Perhaps a relatively new word in some modern vocabularies –”morality” – is the stumbling block. Morality is defined as “principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior; ethics, mores, standards/principles of behavior.”

Certain time periods and cultures apply entirely different meanings to this standard. As I was raised during the publicly active days of the KKK and White Citizen’s Council, etc., violations of the accepted behavioral standards by a black against a white could, and sometimes did, result in the death of the violator. Is the way women are still treated in many parts of the world today right or wrong? The responses given to that question would depend heavily on the morality of the responders.

I guess the answer to all our questions rests on the application of that word, “morality” –”principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior.” This then begs the question: What is the basis for our American principles, ethics and mores? Could it perhaps be the same Book the justices swear on when they take the oath of office?

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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I have heard many commentators and read numerous articles on the recent Supreme Court decision on homosexual marriage, but one thing in particular caught my attention – a reference by Justice Kennedy to two historical figures. Having some familiarity with certain historical references regarding the concept of marriage, I was interested in knowing who Kennedy had acknowledged. A bit of research turned up an interesting article.

Quoting Justice Kennedy:

“Rising from the most basic human needs, marriage is essential to our most profound hopes and aspirations. The centrality of marriage to the human condition makes it unsurprising that the institution has existed for millennia and across civilizations. Since the dawn of history, marriage has transformed strangers into relatives, binding families and societies together. Confucius [551-479 BC] taught that marriage lies at the foundation of government. 2 Li Chi: Book of Rites 266 (C. Chai & W. Chai eds., J. Legge transl. 1967). This wisdom was echoed centuries later and half a world away by Cicero (106 BC-43 BC) who wrote, ‘The first bond of society is marriage; next, children; and then the family.’ See De Officiis 57 (W. Miller transl. 1913).”

I thought it extremely interesting that Justice Kennedy would refer to history to support a particular position, since Western civilization in general, and America in particular, is based on certain historical positions. It is also an unacknowledged point of fact that the civilizations represented by the individuals quoted leave much to be desired in direct comparison with the nation presently implementing the decision.

A major part of the problem we face is a failure by a growing majority of Americans to recognize the unique value and God-given freedoms we enjoy in this country. We seem to be struggling mightily to discard, or allow to be discarded, the principles that have made this country unlike any other on the face of the earth today. Winston Churchill, quoting George Santayana, said, “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it”; or as a quote I learned as a child, which will be familiar to many, says, “You don’t miss the water ’til the well runs dry.”

The Supreme Court majority opinion referenced the aforementioned philosophical position of Confucius, a key figure in the development of Far Eastern philosophies. Which, of all the listed countries that are offshoots of that philosophy, would you choose to live in, as opposed to America? China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam? Various territories including Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, Singapore? These cultures are apparently those most strongly influenced by Confucianism philosophy.

Perhaps you would prefer the time of Cicero (107 BC-44 BC) whose life coincided with the fall of the Roman Empire? Some may find this surprising, but homosexuality, including homosexual marriage, was alive and well in Rome. It was even celebrated by “select emperors … a spin-off of the general cultural affirmation of Roman homosexuality.” This is nothing new, as the early Christians in Rome learned; it was merely another “part of the pagan moral darkness of their time.”

What Christians are fighting against today, then, is not yet another sexual innovation peculiar to our enlightened age, but the return to pre-Christian, pagan sexual morality. Most of us are familiar with the moral decline which led to the ultimate demise of Rome, once considered “the most powerful nation on earth.”(Hmmm, does that phrase sound somewhat familiar?)

Personally, I found it extremely interesting and enlightening (as to the positions of the majority vote on the court) that while Justice Kennedy could quote historical figures, he totally neglected another historical concept, the transcendent principles upon which America is founded.

These Judeo-Christian principles are found in another historical document, the Bible, which specifically addresses the concept of marriage. The court acknowledges, as Justice Kennedy pointed out:

“There are untold references to the beauty of marriage in religious and philosophical texts spanning time, cultures, and faiths, as well as in art and literature in all their forms. It is fair and necessary to say these references were based on the understanding that marriage is a union between two persons of the opposite sex.”

Interestingly, while the positions of the historical figures Confucius and Cicero were mentioned, I find a peculiar dichotomy in the Supreme Court’s action in this particular ruling between, as they say “on de block,” “What is said and what is did.” Aren’t judges supposed to examine all the evidence, pro and con, regarding a case or issue, prior to rendering a decision?

Every Supreme Court Justice, who is appointed for life, takes this oath and is sworn into office with:

“I, _________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as _________ under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.”

They swear this oath with their hand on the Bible. Guess what evidence they would have found regarding this case had they looked into the book under their hand:

“But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh” (Mark 10:6-8 ESV).

I guess it’s OK to quote Cicero and Confucius, but not Jesus.

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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Unquestionably, one of, if not the, most influential institutions in the African-American community is still the church. Bishops, who have been elected to head their denominations, and pastors, who, by popular acclaim through congregational support of their message, oversee mega-churches, wield an enormous amount of influence among blacks, especially the pre-’60s generation.

Since Reconstruction, the black church has served as a source of strength, comfort and leadership. Ministers in the black community are, for the most part, accorded respect, and thus far the majority of black community leaders also bear the title “reverend” before their names, a condition not existing in the white community to such a degree.

A prime example of the way the church should react is demonstrated by the members of the Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina, the scene of one of the most horrific crimes of the decade. Nine members of the congregation were murdered by a gunman during a gathering for prayer. While the president and the media immediately leapt, yet again, upon the racial aspect and fostered “hate-crime” headlines, the members, survivors and family members have demonstrated the essence of what real Christians are called upon to be like.

There have been public declarations of forgiveness for the murderer, and, at the same time, there has been no racial animus displayed by any of the members. A community march is being scheduled that includes blacks and whites and survivors and members of the family. This is a pre-eminent example of what the church in the black community exemplified from the 1800s to the 1960s.

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

In the decades since Reconstruction (media hype to the contrary), despite specifically targeted barriers and intense local, state and even some national hostility, African-Americans have made almost unimaginable strides. Few reasonable people would attempt to argue, objectively, that America has not progressed, literally by leaps and bounds, both socially and economically.

In their book, “America in Black and White; One Nation, Indivisible,” co-authors Abigail and Stephan Thernstrom pointed out: “No group in American history has ever improved its position so dramatically in so short a time.” One can only begin to imagine the impact on the overall political, cultural and economic life of the United States had a Democrat president (Andrew Johnson) not ordered the removal of 40,000 freed slaves from 400,000 acres of prime land that was promised to them by Republicans. Can you visualize what America would be like today had not a Democrat-controlled Congress reversed the anti-segregation provisions of the civil rights legislations passed by Republicans in 1866, 1870, 1871 and 1875?

The impact on the world, not just America, of millions of free blacks having lived and worked for 200 years in a colorblind society, while attending churches like the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, in Charleston, South Carolina, would be incalculable. Literally trillions more dollars would have been generated by the American economy, making the most robust economic engine ever to exist even more powerful.

Let us carefully observe the responses of the media, both political parties and the president to the total lack of racist hyperbole and the failure to claim or blame racism – and all whites in general – by the membership for what one individual did in their church.

Could this be a lesson from which most of America could profit today? Yes, there was injustice, and we grieve, but we forgive and we bear no hate. Love never fails.

That should be the prayer uttered by all of us – for all of us.

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Several years ago, I wrote in a column that Sun Tzu observes, “Know your enemy … and you can fight a hundred battles without disaster.” Without a clear understanding of how your adversary thinks and sees himself (and you), there can be no lasting peace, merely a perpetuation of wars and rumors of wars. Just as there are forces in nature that generate consequences, so in human affairs.

A grave mistake being made by politicians today that can have the most tragic consequences is thinking our adversaries think like we think. Just because we would not launch a nuclear first strike against those with whom we disagree, this is in no way indicative that al-Qaida, ISIS, Boko Haram, Hezbollah or other terrorist organizations would not do so.

There is a reason for the wars in trouble spots like Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria and other Middle Eastern countries. The primary reason we remain embroiled in many conflicts (at the cost of thousands of American lives and billions of dollars) is owed, in large part, to the failure of Western diplomats to comprehend the significant differences between the Eastern and Western mindsets.

Cultures arose, and continue, as a result of the basic principles of the “parent” civilization. Just as the various cultures of India, China, Japan and the Middle East derived their behavior patterns from the basic philosophies of their “parent” (Eastern civilization), so England, France, Germany, United States and Israel, et al, adhere to the basic philosophies of their “parent” (Western civilization). As the basic tenets of Western civilization are essentially biblical Judeo-Christian values, the moral precepts of Eastern civilizations are, likewise, a statement of their religious values.

In the East, the concepts of forgiveness, forbearance, mercy, etc., are all foreign and, generally speaking, non-existent; these virtues are not an integral part of their cultural paradigm. The critical point becomes, therefore, not just a battle or the loss of land but, more importantly, the loss of face and/or honor. The give-and-take inherent in standard negotiations prevalent in the West has no equivalent in Middle Eastern cultures.

Concessions are interpreted as appeasement and/or weakness. (The more you give, the more they want; ask Israel and observe the present U.S./Iran negotiations.) No conscientious member of any Middle Eastern or Far Eastern culture can allow himself, his tribe, his family, his culture or his religion to lose face. Any such insult demands vengeance, usually accompanied by bloodshed – swift if possible, but implacable. A prime example of this philosophy is the “honor killing” of women by their own family members. Husbands have killed wives and fathers have killed daughters whom they feel have somehow “dishonored” them.

Feuds between Muslims (Sunnis versus Shiites) have existed for centuries. The lives and deaths of the participants are inextricably bound up with the customs and traditions that resulted in these blood feuds. Since the concept of the blood feud, for all practical purposes, is unknown in the West, these issues, unrecognized, can constitute a grave danger to the West when it intervenes in such Middle East conflicts.

After a successful intervention in Middle Eastern conflicts (as in Iraq), the West has often simply partitioned territories (as with Eastern and Western Europe, and North Korea/South Korea). The West anticipates that once such boundaries are established, peace will ensue. Unfortunately for the West, externally imposed arbitrary geographical boundaries, to the Eastern mind, do not exist; Islamic territory remains Islamic territory – Sunni or Shiite.

Absent this insight, the West in general, and America in particular, can become involved in a quagmire and subsequently be hated by both sides. Any attempt to placate one side will be seen as an act of hostility by the other. This exists throughout the entire Muslim world; to pacify the Shiite Muslims is to alienate the Sunni Muslims. Wars and rumors of wars are the result of sharp divisions between groups, each having their own set of absolutes. Ignorance of the differences between both sets of absolutes has often left the West without the means of implementing lasting conflict resolutions.

To the Western mind, our Judeo-Christian biblical values of liberty, equality, forgiveness and live-and-let-live are the basis for, and embody, a set of absolutes that Westerners feel are applicable to all. However, today we read of public executions, beheadings and the kidnapping and raping of hundreds of school girls in Africa and the Middle East.

As our diplomatic corps is now faced with this new set of challenges, plus Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Yemen, et al, one is forced to wonder if our diplomats – these supposed specialists in diplomacy – do in fact, realize, in their negotiations, that our Middle East adversaries don’t think like we think.

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

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I have noticed a very interesting departure by the White House from its cohorts in the national media. The current proponent of most of the violence in the Middle East is alternately referred to by the world media as “ISIS” (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham) or “ISIL” (Islamic State of Iraq and Levant). The U.S. State Department uses the term “ISIL.”

Not only that, but even allies refer to the present Middle East conflict differently:

“British Prime Minister David Cameron said Britain must ‘drive back, dismantle and ultimately destroy ISIS and what it stands for.’ Similarly, President Obama has said the U.S. is preparing to ‘deal with a threat from ISIL.’”

So why the dichotomy? Does one letter really matter that much? Or is it the word the letter represents that could be causing the difference? Perhaps a look at what the letters in question stands for might be helpful.

“ISIS,” as you know, presently stands for “Islamic State Iraq and Syria” but the Obama administration is using “ISIL” to avoid using the “S.” According to some reports, in the original name, the first three letters translate to the “Islamic State of Iraq” while the “S” – “al-Sham” – refers to an undefined region around Syria. This could potentially create a problem for the U.S., as according to one news source, “Syria said … that it is ‘ready’ to work with the United States and other world powers in fighting ‘terrorism.’”

Thus, talk about “attacking Syria” is tricky for the U.S. government, especially after Obama refused to send troops into the country to intervene in the civil war against President Bashar al-Assad.

So as opposed to using “ISIS” (In Arabic, the group is known as Al-Dawla Al-Islamiya fi al-Iraq wa al-Sham, or the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham), which could possibly offend Syria, the Obama administration refers to the group as “ISIL,” which stands for “Islamic State of Iraq and Levant.”

Obama chooses to utilize or assign the name “Levant” to a terrorist organization that has declared a “caliphate” in the Middle East – a form of Islamic government led by a caliph (the chief Muslim civil and religious ruler, regarded as the successor of Muhammad).

However, here is the conflicting part for me. The term “al-Sham” – termed by our State Department as “Levant” – refers to a region stretching from southern Turkey through Syria to Egypt, including Lebanon, Israel, the Palestinian territories and Jordan. The group’s stated goal is to impose an Islamic state, or caliphate, over that entire area.

So, correct me if I am in error: It’s wrong to possibly offend an “ally” such as Syria, but it’s OK to utilize a “more accurate” phrase, “Levant,” that implies the destruction or domination of our real ally, Israel?

Fortunately, ISIS has provided the Obama administration with a solution: “The militant group announced in June that it was dropping the last two letters of its acronym and should now be referred to, not as ISIS, or ISIL, but as “IS” (Islamic State).

However, there is another problem. “In reaction to this, leading Muslims have called for the name to be altered to discourage people from joining it. It is neither Islamic nor is it a State.” A letter to David Cameron signed by the Islamic Society of Britain and the Association of Muslim Lawyers, said, “The group has no standing with faithful Muslims, nor among the international community of nations.” Apparently, even some Muslims don’t want it.

Hmmm, so, not ISIS, ISIL or even IS? How about THUG?

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When you look at all the madness that people are inflicting upon others these days and all the trouble they create, you may sometimes wonder: 1) Why are there people? 2) Why do they keep creating havoc?

Well, first of all, let’s establish that there are no moral concepts of right and wrong in the realms of animal, fowl or foliage. While there are some things animals do that we as humans may not like, wildlife has its own rules by which it is governed. So, if evolution thusly equipped those species with “survival of the fittest” laws, why should humans, who some contend are merely a “higher form” of animal, have specific laws based on varying concepts of “morality”?

Just think of the hundreds of billions of dollars that could be saved by the immediate implementation of a “survival of the fittest” rule of law among humans: no more orphanages, old folks’ homes, extended-care hospitals, hospices, intensive-care units; only the strong survive. Oh yeah, I forgot – that’s “uncivilized.” Which brings us to another question: “Civilized” according to whom?

Some of us find certain events taking place today in other “civilizations” abhorrent. Things like the kidnapping, wholesale rape and selling into slavery of school girls, bombings, beheadings or enslaving people with whom you disagree – in other words, the total disregard of human rights.

Take, for example, this recent anti-God activity conducted by the Catholic Church hierarchy:

“The Vatican said Wednesday that it had concluded a treaty to recognize Palestinian statehood, a symbolic but significant step welcomed by Palestinians but upsetting to the Israeli government” (which is recognized by God) (Dallas Morning News, May 13).

“The treaty, which concerns the activities of the Catholic Church in Palestinian territory, makes clear that the Holy See has switched its diplomatic recognition from the Palestine Liberation Organization to the state of Palestine” (

So, if the Catholic Church can recognize a government that maintains that Jews should be annihilated, should blacks – who were once lynched and enslaved by whites – be allowed to slaughter whites they feel are suppressing them today? Then in that case, shouldn’t whites, who feel threatened by black violence, have the right to eliminate the “black threat”?

Alternatively, is it possible that human beings just might have a higher value – regardless of color, creed, sex or national origin – than plants and animals? Could it be that a force, a power greater than evolution, is behind and responsible for human existence?

Why are there humans, anyway? Why did God create the human race? He had a completely blank slate and all creative powers. I wonder how many thousands of ideas and concepts He imagined before he drew up the DNA blueprint for humanity. Why male and female? Why not simply the “hydra” which can reproduce in three ways: 1) bisexual reproduction, 2) budding like a plant or 3) being cut in half and having both halves grow back as total and complete new organisms?

The endless, exotic varieties of the plant and animal kingdoms literally shout of the wonderfully imaginative creativity of this God, Who, with limitless options, came up with us! Frankly, had I been God, I probably would not have come up with a Ben Kinchlow; don’t laugh. I probably wouldn’t have come up with a you, either. In fact, I am not sure I would have chosen such pesky, hard-to-manage creatures as humans beings. Thankfully, I am not God. (And all the people said, “Amen!”)

So, again, why humans? Here’s why: God wanted, and therefore created, something that would testify not only to His power, but to His personhood. You and I, made in His image, are that something. We serve not just as a footprint to prove He walked here, but as a fingerprint, demonstrating His handiwork.

Modern science, despite its efforts to reduce us to merely a higher form of animal, has been forced to agree with something written about us thousands of years ago: “… I am fearfully and wonderfully made”(Psalms 139). It is recorded in The Book that we, you and I, are created in His “… image and in our likeness.”

Here is another truly amazing fact: God made you and me like Him in another regard. He gave us the same absolute free will that He has. No human being, if they are willing to accept the consequences of their decisions, can be made to do anything he or she does not want to do. Every human being has the individual authority to do exactly what they please. (See first paragraph, second question.)

Here is a profound thought and an even more mind-boggling truth that flows from this thought: There is only one force in the universe who can make you do anything – and He won’t!

So, in the final analysis, as human beings, we have the right, privilege and authority to choose the what, when, how and why of our behavior, actions and reactions to one another – which brings to mind another profound, perhaps problem-solving concept: “And as you would like and desire that men would do to you, do exactly so to them” (Luke 6:31, AMP).

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

Media wishing to interview Ben Kinchlow, please contact

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The scenes that we Americans have been witnessing in multiple cities across this country, at first intermittently and lately almost regularly, have brought to mind a seriously disturbing memory. It’s a memory shared by many black Americans experientially and all Americans on some level. This haunting reality was called “lynching.”

Although the majority of black Americans think they know what racism looks like, sounds like and feels like, the truth is that their hue and cry for “justice and equality” is enough to make a rationally thinking person, black or white, writhe in frustration.

Unfortunately, there are those today who, through spurious charges, whether deliberate or misguided, allege that America has failed to fulfill its promise of “liberty and justice for all.”

Pardon a personal historical reference, but I grew up in the segregated South. I drank from “colored” water fountains, sneaked a drink from “white” fountains and made a startling discovery: The water tasted the same. I used segregated restrooms, waiting rooms, rode in the back of buses and buried my grandparents in a segregated cemetery – separated even in death.

As a child, I attended a “separate but equal” school. However, every Monday morning, we opened the sliding wooden doors, stood, and “in unison, children,” said “The Lord’s Prayer.” Then, turning to the middle of the building, “Face the flag, hands over your heart, in unison … I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” As you know, “God” was not added until 1954.

One nation “indivisible”? We didn’t know what that meant, but our standard then was, if you don’t know what something means, go to the dictionary and look it up: Indivisible: not divisible, not separable into parts. Now that may not have been the case for all Americans at the moment, but it was there, and we were taught and expected that the promised “liberty and justice for all” would someday include us, if we were prepared. So our mantra back in the day was “study, get educated, be ready and remember, America is the home of the brave.”

Have you ever wondered what African-Americans want, and why they vote Democratic? Do you know how slavery actually began in America? Ben Kinchlow’s best-selling book “Black Yellowdogs” breaks race and politics down in black and white. Get your copy today!

So, we studied, we prayed and then we stood in line, or sat at lunch counters. Led by preachers, we marched and linked arm-in-arm, “indivisible” with many whites, and we sang, “We shall overcome.”

It seems increasingly evident that many black Americans either know little to nothing of their history, or they have disqualified it as irrelevant to the “troubles I’ve seen” in their modern-day American way of life. I have written numerous columns trying to throw the light of reason and sanity on the black man’s perceived plight in America. And here I am, yet again.

There was actually a time in our history when, yes, racism was rampant and black Americans were considered less than human beings. It was a time when the most responsible, God-fearing black family could be obliterated by hatred, fear and real racism. A decent, innocent black citizen could be accused of heinous crimes and, for no reason other than color, be summarily hung from a rope – called “lynching” – on the spot, just for being black. No trial, no jury, no evidence.

Then there came a time when the conscience of America was awakened and attitudes began to shift and white men were willing to die in a horrible Civil War to expunge the hatred from our midst. These fighting men, white and black, gave up everything for this cause, and a great U.S. president died trying to right this wrong.

Slowly but surely, we progressed to becoming a country for all the people, regardless of skin color, and we began to accept one another, acknowledge one another, support one another and even love one another. We laid down our hatred and decided to live together as equal Americans. Black Americans began to experience the same blessings as all other citizens, and it seemed the evil did indeed exist no more.

Now here we are, once again facing racial hatred – in reverse. All the gains, and there have been many, are being desecrated by godless mobs who have no earthly idea of what racism really is. With their trumped-up charges against one white man after another – no trial, no jury, no evidence – while justifying it because of the color of someone’s skin, are they slowly but surely reviving the past – false accusations, violence, malevolence and even death?

Are we now witnessing a black Ku Klux Klan?

Media wishing to interview Ben Kinchlow, please contact

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