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Missouri Family E-News

February 5, 2013

 
Legislature Acts Quickly to Restore PRC Tax Credits 

 

Leaders in the Missouri Legislature are moving quickly to enact legislation to restore state tax credits for pregnancy resource centers.

 

The Missouri Senate has given early approval to a substitute bill, sponsored by Senators Bob Dixon, Ron Richard, and Jay Wasson, which reauthorizes the tax credit program through the year 2019.    

 

The Senate granted final approval to the bill by a resounding vote of 32-0.  The bill also extended tax credits for food pantries, child advocacy centers, developmental disability care providers, and surviving spouses of public safety officers.

 

"These tax credits allow private donors to direct their charitable dollars to programs they know are doing the most good," says Senator Dixon.  "It allows neighbors to help neighbors directly, knowing their donations will have an impact locally. "   

 

Under the program, taxpayers can reduce their state income tax payment by 50 percent of the amount of their charitable donation. 

 

In the House, similar legislation has received an early endorsement from the Children, Families, and Persons with Disabilities Committee.  That committee approved a bill sponsored by Representative Eric Burlison by a vote of 10-1.

 

We commend the leadership of the Missouri House and Senate who have acted decisively to expedite consideration of these bills.  Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey, Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard, House Speaker Tim Jones, and House Majority Leader John Diehl have all made a priority commitment to these proposals, and we salute them.   

 

The House is expected to debate the issue of benevolent tax credits today, and take a final vote on the bill Thursday.   

 

We encourage you to contact your state representative to support Representative Burlison's bill, House Bill 87.  You can do so by using this link:

Missouri House 

 

 

Christian Symbols Banned from Army Base

 

 

The U.S. Army has ordered removal of a cross and steeple from a military base chapel in Afghanistan.  The Pentagon also instructed base commanders to board up the chapel's cross-shaped windows to comply with the Defense Department's new policy of "religious neutrality."

 

American Atheists President David Silverman had sent a letter to Pentagon officials complaining about the chapel at Forward Operating Base Orgun-E.

 

"Atheists and soldier with minority religious beliefs often seem like second-class citizens when Christianity is seemingly endorsed by their own base," Silverman said in the letter.

 

"It also inflames the Muslim versus Christian mentality," Silverman continued.  "It sends a message that could be interpreted as hostile to Islam."

 

The new Army regulation prohibits "distinctive religious symbols such as crosses, crucifixes, the Star of David, [or] Menorah" from being permanently displayed inside the base chapel or on the building's exterior.  Only portable religious symbols may be used during religious services.

 

The Army had taken similar action two years concerning a chapel at Camp Marmal.  FoxNews reported at the time that a soldier considered the new regulation "a direct attack against Christianity and Judaism."

 

The soldier noted that only Judeo-Christian symbols are specifically cited in the regulation, with no mention of the religious symbols used by other faith groups.

 

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, deplored the Pentagon's latest anti-religious edict.

 

"Under this Administration, the military has become a Christian-free zone.  You put on the uniform to defend freedom--chief among them freedom of religion.  Yet you are stripped of your own freedom to practice your own faith." 

 


Boy Scouts Execs Propose Ditching
the Scout Oath
 

 

 

The National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America is meeting at its headquarters in Irving, Texas, to debate the future of the 103 year-old organization.  On the agenda is a proposal by Boy Scout executives which would radically change the nature and purpose of the organization.

 

National Scout administrators are proposing a policy change which would allow Boy Scout troops and Cub Scout packs to admit young boys who claim to be homosexuals.  Furthermore, the policy change would permit local Scouting organizations to "welcome" men who are avowed homosexuals to serve as Scoutmasters and Scout leaders.  A vote on the new policy is expected tomorrow. 

 

The proposed policy stands in stark contradiction to the promise a Boy Scout makes in the Scout Oath that "I will keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight."  The policy would also undermine foundational principles of the Scout Law that a Scout be "clean and reverent."

 

Scout officials claim that the change is the result of "a dialogue within the Scouting family."  Yet this is obviously a contrived and empty explanation.  The Boy Scouts of America just concluded a two-year study seven months ago that determined that  the organization's current policy on homosexuality "remains in the best interests of Scouting," and that "a majority of our membership agrees with our policy."

 

That policy states that "homosexual conduct is inconsistent with the obligations in the Scout Oath and Scout Law to be morally straight and clean in thought, word, and deed."  That policy was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 2000 Boy Scouts of America v. Dale case, which ruled that the Scouts had a constitutional right to freedom of association with those who share their "expressive message."  

 

The abrupt change in the posture of Scout administrators is the result of pressure from corporate donors who are major advocates of the homosexual agenda.   Major corporate benefactors have already withdrawn or threatened to withdraw substantial financial support for the Boy Scouts if they don't revise their stand on sexual morality.  AT&T CEO Randall Stevenson and Ernst and Young CEO James Turley are now members of the Board of the Boy Scouts, and have promised to work to change the Scout culture from within.

 

A decision by the Boy Scouts to abandon the essential moral standards of Scouting would have disastrous consequences for the nation's leading program of character development in young men.  Nearly 70 percent of the country's 100,000 scouting units are chartered to religious organizations.  The majority of local troops and packs are sponsored by Mormon, Catholic, Southern Baptist, and United Methodist congregations, for whom homosexuality is incompatible with their Scriptural beliefs.

 

Religious and  pro-family leaders have been quick to denounce the push to transform the central tenets of Scouting.  Frank Page, President of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, predicted that the move would be a devastating "self- inflicted wound," and "a death blow" to the future of Scouting.  Boy Scout administrators had met with Page two weeks ago asking him to remain silent when the proposed change was announced.

 

"With the admission of homosexual Scout leaders, the BSA would place men, who by their own definition are sexually attracted to other men, in close supervisory proximity to teenage boys, which invites real human tragedies," says Richard Land, President of the Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention.

 

Scouting has already been plagued by problems with the sexual molestation of young boys even with the current policy in place.  The California Supreme Court ruled last month that the Boy Scouts of America must release internal files for the last 12 years detailing allegations of sexual abuse by Scout leaders and volunteers.  The decision came in a case filed by a former Scout who claims he was molested in 2007.  Last October, the Oregon Supreme Court ordered the release of files from 1965 to 1985 in connection with yet another sexual abuse lawsuit.

 

A Washington Times study from 1994 covering two decades found that a Boy Scout, Cub Scout, or Explorer reported being sexually abused by a Scout leader on the average of at least once a week.  Each year from 1971 through 1989, an average of 21 Scout leaders and camp workers were banned from Scouting for sexual acts ranging from oral sex and sodomy to fondling boys in their sleep.

 

"This proposal opens the door to the sexual and spiritual corruption of boys," says Peter LaBarbera, President of  The Americans for Truth about Homosexuality.  "The tragic reality is that homosexual predators go where the boys are.  Most parents do not want to send their sons camping with a male Scoutmaster who identifies with [homosexual] sex."

 

"Furthermore, parents do not want openly gay boys spreading the message of 'out and proud' homosexuality in their son's troop," LaBarbera adds.  "Parents do not want other boys making sexual advances on their sons."

 

Conservative commentator Albert Mohler believes the change, if adopted, will lead to a huge exodus of Christians from the Scouting program.  "The Boy Scouts will soon face the same challenge seen in much  of the United States military.  The conservative segments of the population morally opposed to homosexuality are also the segments that have historically provided the vast majority of those who volunteer to serve in the military.  Yet the Boy Scouts seem prepared to set themselves against the majority of their own members."

 

A decision by Scouting's National Executive Board to allow each chartered Scouting unit to determine its own standard on homosexuality will lead to every Scout troop and pack being subjected to relentless pressure to adopt "anti-discrimination" policies that validate homosexuality.  

 

Liberal activists not only want to reshape the principles and personality of Scouting on the subject of homosexuality, but also on the subject of faith as well.  Liberal columnists are also beating the drum for the Scouts to abandon their Oath to fulfill their duty "to God and country" by allowing atheists to be participants in the Scouting program.

 

"If they lift that bigotry from their requirements, I would hope they remove the rest of the bigotry and admit atheists as well," says David Silverman, President of the American Atheists organization.    

 

Please be praying for the members of the National Executive Board, that they will vote to preserve the moral integrity of the Scouting program.  You can let the Boy Scouts of America know what you think about this issue by calling (972) 580-2000, or by e-mailing the organization at this link:

Boy Scouts of America 

 

 

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