Let's not confuse prosecuting illegal activity with tyranny.
Groups with "tea party" and ""patriot" in their name often engage in political activities which is their right. The same goes for a pro-life group, there is nothing to stop them from folding in religious proselytizing in their literature or advocating a political candidate. The same goes for a religious congregation. The pastor can stand in the pulpit and tell everyone who to vote for.
Many people who support each of these three activities would like to enforce them on the citizenry. The big rub is that would be tyranny. One cannot advocate that and keep a tax exempt status for your organization and ought to expect to have their tax-exempt status examined.
The sergeant used his military office and his promotion to promote a political position. The Army has every right to restrict political activity and speech while in uniform, and to expect a soldier to adhere to official military policy. What if he had decided he didn't like capitalism and held a birthday party that also celebrated advocacy of communism? If a soldier decides his or her personal moral authority demands deviating from discipline and violating orders then they must also accept that personal action may incur prosecution. The sergeant should have resigned his position and then exercised his citizen right to free speech.
It has always been illegal to publish classified information without prior authorization. While the government's wholesale intrusion into the communication of its citizens without any basis to suspect involvement in a crime and support of the "Patriot" Act is tyrannical, looking into the records of a reporter who used leaked classified information to write an article has always been permissible with a warrant in hand.
I'd like to see every Baptist and Pentecostal church that wishes to build a new sanctuary or start a new congregation first sign a pledge to uphold and protect ALL the laws of the United States before getting a permit, including the pledge to honor all persons' right to worship in their own tradition.
LaughingBoy, surely you jest.
We can certainly hang the continuation of these programs on President Obama, but these programs started under Bush the younger, and our government has wanted the power to know what you say and think for many years. Earlier versions existed under Carter, Reagan and Bush the Elder. We have J. Edgar Hoover, for example, who spied to use the information as power to put a public face on it. You have every elected representative(sic) and senator who voted for these programs to thank. If the snoops share your politics it is ok, but wait until the tables turn.
No one wants to acknowledge that security is an illusion, because to ensure security requires complete loss of liberty. The government must know everything that is said, thought or done to ensure stability. Then the threat to personal security comes from the government that does not want you saying or thinking something. So which form of insecurity do you want?
Let your vote do the talking.
It is oxymoronic to describe the behavior of the crowd at the meeting as "Christian." They diminish us as civilized humans.
It is reminiscent of the Southern racism we saw in the 1950's and 1960's. AndrewLohr should consider how many African Americans white southerners killed because of the color of their skin before he casts stones at Muslims, or Jews. What kind of "good" government in America allowed that behavior to persist for over a century?
In fact, he might want to go back to Pam Sohn's little church and read a little of Paul's reflections on his own hand in personal violence against God.
Easy123 says "You misunderstand. Science assumes nothing to be true. Sufficient amounts of proof and evidence must be found before something is accepted as fact. A hypothesis is not equivalent to an assumption."
You need to be a little more rigorous in your definitions. Science is a hypothesis-based discipline. The purpose of hypothesis is to establish its veracity or the null-hypothesis. Having done so it builds a description of reality. A reality which Christian and Hebrew believers should find comforting since it can only describe what God has wrought.
You and conservative need to stop posting and chasing your tails. Why not take a breath to replenish your oxygen?
Oh, Easy123, you say "science makes no assumptions." Science in fact does nothing else but make assumptions called hypotheses that they seek to prove in order to form an explanation of experience, or reject because they do not.
Conservative says, "There are also 'scientists' who are paid to lie about their research in order to fool the gullible." The method of scientific inquiry in fact does ferret our false data and theory because it does not work. Please identify these "paid" liars.
As for this supposed battle between religion and science that I hesitate to get into because the conservative element refuses to think rationally, but seems required. If you believe God made us, as I do, and the universe, and God gave us the power to inspect, observe and evaluate God's handiwork, then how can we observe something that is contrary to God, if God made it? The only way a dogmatic religious person can argue against scientific observation is to assume God intended to deceive us by planting information that does not reflect God's activity. That is a very heretical argument.
The evidence of human and human-like people in the fossil record as early as a million years ago is irrefutable. What is arguable is whether there was a continuity of these past humanoids with later species or not, and whether or when "human intelligence" began. One reputable biologist believes the 200,000 year ago humans were as intelligent as today given the way tools were made. It is also an unanswerable question. This is a little discussed scientific problem with "deep evolution" that even Darwin might acknowledge, that scientists avoid problems with the theory because they do not want to deal with the conservative naysayers.
Actually I think if you look at insurance industry statistics it shows a 21 y.o. drinking age saves lives from auto deaths. One could make a good argument (as you did) if you are 18 and have to fight in the Army you ought to be able to buy a beer; but the logical response ought to be to raise the age of majority to 21 and not allow 18-20 y.o. folks into the Army/military service. And, by the way, bring back the draft. That would stop a lot of wars in their tracks.
If you don't want to enforce underage drinking laws then call to get rid of the laws. You could have invoked the European model where children are taught how to manage alcohol from an early age, but then you might be challenged to talk about their intelligent health care models and open all sorts of cans of worms a conservative, tea party-type editorialist might not want opened.
Finally the folks who ought to be arrested and fined are the parents who let their kids hold an alcohol-laced party with no adults present. Pay a few $5,000 fines and I'll bet the number of parties will shrink.
AND, by the way, I know a lot of folks on the mountain and their kids in the prep schools; and economic bigotry seems to flow downhill not up, many of them have an elitist attitude that expects their kids to be pampered and coddled when they go astray.
How many cars must we ban from the roads to make them safe for non-CO2 emitting bicycles?