Thorner: Ives drumbeat begins to resound among IL conservatives

Sunday night, Republican state Representative Jeanne Ives hosted a sizable crowd of supporters in her hometown of Wheaton. She’s on the 2018 GOP primary ballot challenging incumbent GOP Governor Bruce Rauner. Illinois Review contributor Nancy Thorner was on hand at one of several events Ives has been appearing at over the past few weeks …

By Nancy Thorner –

The Republican Assembly of Lake County, Illinois, held its Christmas party at J & D’s Bar & Grill in Wauconda, IL. on Saturday evening, December 2nd, 2017. The RALC is a grassroots organization made up of Ronald Reagan conservatives who believe in small government, lower taxes, free market capitalism, strong defense, the right to life, and the support of the US. Constitution in the tradition of the Founding Fathers. Attendance at this year’s RALC Christmas party was the largest ever, numbering 85 members and guests.

Bob Bednar, Chairman of the RALC, introduced featured speaker Jeanne Ives, who is running as a conservative Republican challenger to Governor Bruce Rauner. Check out Ives For Illinois.

Meet Jeanne Ives

Jeanne Ives served as a Representative in the Illinois State House (42nd District), which includes all or portions of Wheaton, Warrenville, West Chicago, Winfield, Carol Stream, Lisle and Naperville. Ives was first elected in 2013, until she was “drafted” in the fall of this year by the state’s grassroots Republican base to challenge incumbent Governor Bruce Rauner. While serving in the Illinois House Ives demonstrated not only a willingness to lead on difficult issues and question powerful House leaders, but she also gained an insightful understanding of policy.

As a West Point graduate of the Class of 1987 with a Bachelor of Science in Economics, Jeanne Ives went on to serve in the U.S. Army. Her assignments included platoon leader and headquarters detachment commander for transportation units in Germany and ROTC instructor at Wheaton College. Ives resigned from the Army in 1993 to raise her children, while working as a tax advisor and bookkeeper for small businesses and individuals.

It was on October 28, 2017, that State Rep. Jeanne Ives announced she would challenge incumbent Governor Bruce Rauner. Her running mate is former State Rep. Richard Morthland of Cordova, lllinois. Unlike other candidates who have been collecting signatures since early September, Ives and her choice for lieutenant governor had a late start. Despite this late state, State Rep. Jeanne Ives announced officially Sunday night, December 3, 2017, in an invitation-only gathering in her home district that she would be a candidate for governor in the March 2018 Illinois Republican Party primary. She was introduced to the crowd by her running mate, former State Rep. Rich Morthland from the Rock Island area.

If you still have some doubts or misgivings about Jeanne Ives running on the Republican ticket to unseat Republican governor Bruce Rauner, this article, due for publication at National Review on 2017-12-17, titled “Bruce Rauner’s Illinois Breakdown,” describes Rauner’s unacceptable performance as Illinois’ governor during his first term in office.

“When Governor Bruce Rauner of Illinois announced in October that he would seek reelection in 2018, he released a two-minute campaign video. It shows the Republican wearing blue jeans and a black leather vest as he rides his Harley-Davidson motorcycle from Chicago to Springfield, the state capital. “Four years ago,” he says in a voiceover, “I crisscrossed our state, looked people in the eye, and promised to fight business as usual.

This boast came about a month after Cardinal Blase Cupich accused him of breaking his word and the Chicago Sun-Times put his picture on its front page, below a headline that shouted: “Benedict Rauner.” The governor’s offense was to have signed what may be America’s most radical abortion-funding law after vowing to veto it. The betrayal capped a season of defeats for conservatives, including an income-tax hike, a big bailout of Chicago’s public schools, and turning Illinois into what critics of illegal immigration are calling a sanctuary state.”

Jeanne Ives comments on state of Illinois

Candidate Ives was received with much enthusiasm by RALC members and friends. As Jeanne stated, the catalyst for her gubernatorial challenge was not only Rauner’s signing of a bill to expand taxpayer-funded abortion coverage for women on Medicaid, but also the provision to increase funding to Chicago Public Schools.

When serving in the Illinois General Assembly, Ives fought for school choice and Right for Life. She also opted out of both a taxpayer funded pension and healthcare, as both pension and state group health insurance have greatly contributed to budget pressures and both need reform.

In relation to Governor Rauner, “He has basically discredited himself as a Republican. He’s signed into law very extreme measures. The man who said he had no social agenda ended up having only a social agenda.”

Ives related, when elected to the House in 2013, how both the Illinois House and the Senate had super majorities making it possible for Democrats to pass anything they desired. At the time Ives wondered how things could get any worse than they already were. When Bruce Rauner ran as a reform candidate in 2014, Ives helped to elect Rauner to lead his promised revolt. But instead of Rauner fulfilling his campaign promises, Ives instead experienced betrayal. As Ives said:

“Rauner has basically discredited himself as a Republican. He’s signed into law very extreme measures. The man who said he had no social agenda ended up having only a social agenda, having enacted the same economic and social agenda of his buddy Rahn Emmanuel.”

Ives questioned what we have at the end of three years and listed the negatives as high taxes, more debt, and many people exiting Illinois for a better economic climate. Noted by Ives was new data in the deterioration of Illinois’ tax base. In 2017 Illinois experienced a loss of nearly 42,000 tax returns to other states representing 86,100 individuals at a net loss to Illinois of $4.75 billion in adjusted gross income. Continued Ives: “Because Illinois became a sanctuary state under Governor Rauner, Illinois is less safe.” In what was a huge disappointment to Ives and conservatives state-wide was the signing by Rauner of HB-40 which sanctions tax payer funding of abortions. Instead of reforming our Medicaid system, Gov. Rauner expanded it. Ives further revealed that Illinois ranks 48th in the nation on serving those with developmental disabilities.

As to Governor Rauner being elected to a second term, Jeannie Ives was insistent that Rauner can’t win in the November 2018 General Election, for no amount of money can win back Republicans who feel betrayed by Rauner.

Jeanne Ives as a candidate

In speaking of herself as a former army officer and graduate of West Point, Ives informed her audience that she lives by the West Point Code and that she can be counted on not to lie, cheat, or steal, nor does she tolerate others who do so. In the House, Ives opposed tax increases, big government bailouts, and stood up for conservative values when other House members were not willing to doing to.

Ives then spoke about the work of grassroots Republicans in turning in 16,000 signatures in only four weeks. This included 520 circulators of petitions in 64 counties. Ives noted that where ever she goes in Illinois she receives a warm reception, an indication that voter motivation is high for Ives, in contrast to the rejection of Rauner by Illinois voters.

Campaign promises made by Jeanne Ives

Property taxes would be cut, not frozen. Property taxes in Illinois are out of control. Home owners end up renting from the government.
Spending would be cut. Ives, when serving in the House, did propose and filed bills to cut spending.
On day one a task force would be formed to detect and prosecute public corruption in Illinois. Mention was made by Ives of the corruption in the Cook County Assessment System. Governor Rauner was given the vehicle to lead on this issue, but he didn’t follow through.

In closing, Ives wants Illinois to be a place which our families can call home for many generations to come.

Republican Secretary of State, Joshua Griffin

Following Jeanne Ives, Joshua Griffin spoke about his credentials as a Republican candidate to unseat Jesse White, Secretary of State.

Joshua Griffin expressed his disgust of Illinois in its status as a failed state. Regarding Jesse White, having served a total of 40+ years in public elected office, Jesse represents “the machine” politics which operates within Illinois. As such, said Griffin, we need fresh voices in Springfield and around the state. Voices that will stand up to the establishment every time they attempt to set the status quo back in place. No longer can we allow our elected officials or political parties to dictate the rules and reap self-dignified personal gain from their highly coveted political perches. Joshua Griffin’s impressive bio is noted here.

A native of Chicago, IL, Joshua “J.C.” Griffin was born on the city’s south side and raised in the both the western and southern suburbs of Cook County. is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, and the 4th generation of military serviceman from his family. After a distinguished military service from 2007 – 2012, Griffin achieved the rank of Senior Airman prior to receiving an honorable discharge in 2012. Griffin also holds Impressive business credentials.

RALC Officers

Bob Bednar, Chairman

Glenn Garamoni, Vice-Chair

Mike McKay, Treasurer

Mary Biron, Secretary

Bob Cook, Executive Director

Lake County Legislators and Officials Present at December 2 event:

Adam Solano – Candidate – State House District 62
Jeanne Ives – State Rep. District 42 – Candidate – Governor
John Reinert – McHenry County Board District 2 – Candidate State Senate District 32
Doug Bennett — Candidate US House District 10
Mark Shaw – Lake County Republican Central Committee Chairman
Larry Falbe – Lake County Federation President
Jeri Atleson – Fremont Township Trustee
Tom Weber – Lake County Board – Candidate State Rep. District 64
Marty Zeidman – Moraine Township Republican Chairman
Mark Curran, Lake County Sherriff
Bob Bednar – Candidate for Lake County Board, District 6
Glenn Garamoni – Fremont Township Republican Chairman
Nancy Kubalanza – Grant Township Republican Chairman
Marjorie Kubalanza – Lake County Central Committee Chairwoman
Connie Shanahan – Fremont Township Trustee

The new RALC Meeting location is Fremont Public Library located on 1170 Midlothian Road, Mundelein IL. Meetings are held at 7:00 p.m. on the 3rd Thursday of every month. The next meeting will be on Thursday, January 18th.

Monday, December 11, 2017 at 10:09 AM | Permalink

Comments
Live Free Or Die said…

We stand with you Jeanne!
Reply Monday, December 11, 2017 at 04:32 PM
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American patriots are calling the activities of Organizing for America treasonous. That is a heavy accusation worth exploring for facts and accuracy, which is the intent of this article. Organizing for Action (OFA), was founded by leftist Democrats to help President Barack Obama promote an agenda that does not align with that of our forefathers. One of their first goals was to question America’s long-held opinions on important issues with which they disagreed and to thus promote changes to our established laws and historical concepts. They succeeded in many of their goals by using the power of the presidency and specific like-minded media sources to influence and persuade people to their political views.

Inequality was one of their key tools used to promote division among us. They pitted Blacks against Whites and the poor against the wealthy to divide us. They promoted themes of inequality, racism, and police brutality. One would think that after Americans had just elected Barack Obama, a Black man, a majority of Americans no longer could be accused of advocating racial divides. We could bask in the progress America had made regarding racism. Instead, the Obama administration, OFA, and specific media sources sought isolated examples to persuade the public racism remained a major problem in America

Inequality as a tool to promote division

Consider the following examples of how this was being perpetrated and promoted.  George Zimmerman (a White/Hispanic man) was purposely targeted because he had killed a Black teenager, Trayvon Martin. After misleading media stories for months, a jury of his peers examined the facts and found Mr. Zimmerman not guilty of murder.

Other similar occurrences of White on Black crime began receiving national attention, until facts finally proved the initial impression to be false.  The most explosive example happened in Ferguson, Missouri, when a White police officer (Darren Wilson) shot and killed a Black teenager (Michael Brown).  By the time this tragedy was over, much of the town was destroyed by riots, looting, fires, and protestors with weapons. Some were even bused in from other parts of our country for the express purpose of protesting. The officer in question had to be held in protective custody. As a result, this small town experienced a degree of destruction from which it has never completely recovered.  In the end, a jury of Blacks and White town folk ruled the Black man in question was not the victim.  He was far from an innocent teen and the officer was anything but a racist.  Once again people began seeing this as another attempt by some to promote racism and portray cops as corrupt, before having all the facts.

The Obama years continued to be peppered with accusations of racism, without significant proof, and which often centered on claims that police officers targeted Blacks. This incited some to become angry demonstrators who marched in our city streets, chanting slogans such as “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon.”

Some individuals jumped to judgement, believing these unproven claims of selective police brutality was a major occurrence and represented a severe problem in America.  One man decided he needed to execute policemen and did so by fatally shooting two officers sitting in their patrol car eating lunch.  That tragic incident toned down the anti-police rhetoric, but such has gradually raised its ugly head again and persists today.

Disbelief and uncontrolled angry follow Trump’s election

Shock waves penetrated those aligned with OFA, especially leaders like George Soros, when “we the people” elected Donald Trump, a man who had never been involved in politics.  OFA had spent a great deal of money and time creating the atmosphere that suggested America needed a drastic change. Never in their wildest imagination did they think that the change Americans wanted was those Donald Trump had promised.  This new President in Trump was not only their adversary, but was likewise critical of the “D.C. Establishment” and the growing number of Leftist media sources with whom many in the OFA organizations had developed solid relations.

It didn’t take long until the OFA and others of their ilk began maligning our new President before he had even spent a day in the Oval Office. All associated with the OFA, which began and grew under Obama, have since proven unrelenting in their efforts to destroy President Trump and all those who align themselves with Trump and his ideas for making this nation great again.

An article dated Feb. 10, 2017 — Obama-Aligned Organizing for Action Relaunches for Trump Era 
states:

“Had Hillary Clinton won the presidency, OFA was likely headed for a wind-down. But with Trump in the White House, the relaunched OFA will claim a spot in the increasingly crowded marketplace of groups looking to fight the new president’s agenda.”

Four field organizers were hired in states home to key senators as part of its campaign to defend Obama’s signature healthcare law.  OFA helped get Obamacare supporters to flood town halls for Florida Republican Rep. Gus Bilirakis, Illinois GOP Rep. Peter Roskam, and California Rep. Tom McClintock, which lead to national news coverage about anti-repeal backlash.

Behind the scenes of OFA

To fully understand how Organizing For America (OFA) operates, it is necessary to analyze and understand the network of non-profits led by its organizers, such as George Soros.  The group has an enormous war chest (new reports claim over $50 million) and a network of approximately 250 offices nationwide. The OFA IRS filings indicate membership at 32,525 of volunteers nationwide.

Reasonable people ask why this group began undermining President Trump within days after his election and are suspicious of the unprecedented tactics used to destroy Trump ever since.  Particularly alarming for reasonable people is that there are many in the media who appear complicit with the OFA plan to destroy President Trump.  Efforts began way before Trump had a chance to demonstrate his governing capabilities.   

Obama’s break with tradition

There is a clue to consider as we ponder what is happening politically in America today.  It helps explain the immediate and unrelenting criticisms and opposition to President Trump.  It has been an American tradition that after the election of a new President, the former president leaves office and wisely goes back to his home state once the new president is sworn in. Former presidents then refrain from making any political statements or comments regarding current policies or situations facing the new President and especially avoid addressing any political controversies. They do this to allow for a smooth transition of power, which is something people in other countries can only envy, with little hope of attaining.   Former president Obama and his wife elected to break with this important tradition.

President Obama bought a house in Washington D.C. and invited his former senior advisor, Valerie Jarrett, to move into his new home,  blocks from the White House.  There wasn’t any purpose given for the break in tradition, but Obama’s excuse for inviting Jarrett into his home was she planned to help him write his book. It is telling that after almost a year there has been no further mention of Obama’s book. It is fact that President Obama, his wife, and many of his friends continue to be engaged in partisan politics.  This alone should concern the public because it speaks volumes as to why there has been non-stop defaming of Trump and his administration by powerful Democrats and Leftist mainstream media sources still faithful to the former President.

This “Resistance” opposition group blatantly developed malicious ways to stop President Trump and his administration from achieving even the most basic accomplishments.  For instance this is an example of how they keep our President from carrying out his plans: 1. Trump issues an immigration executive order;  2. The OFA signals all its groups to begin protesting with pre-scripted statements from a variety of pro-immigrant groups;  3. The ACLU uses its lawyers to file lawsuits in jurisdictions where known activist judges will favor their objectives;  4. Leftist volunteers are called to protest at airports and Congressional town hall meetings;  5. The liberal, biased media springs to action in support of these activities;  6. Media sources like twitter light up to put out information already written for the occasion, and 7. Shockingly, this has been followed up with street violence.

“Resistance” effort demands exposure

Exposing the “Resistance” effort is essential for the sake of this nation.  It must be exposed for the sake of our nation.  It is worth asking how our forefathers might have responded to those who refused to accept the results of a fair presidential election?  It defies all that has made America a nation to be envied.  Instead, it serves as a warning for serious attention and intervention. This Resistance is far more than just an opposition group working to keep a fair, balanced structure for America.  This group is acting outside of our governing structure as a mock government to intentionally create controversy where there is none, make unfounded accusations against our leaders, and use the media to malign and ridicule President Trump whenever possible.

The real resistance that makes sense is to oppose those who embrace un-American tactics. Why after almost a year do they refuse to accept President Trump as our country’s leader?

So far the Resistance effort hasn’t succeeded in taking down President Trump; however, the Washington Free Beacon issued a report on November 17, 2017, pursuant to an internal document it had received, of a secretive three-day dark money conference held at California’s posh La Costa Resort of the Democracy Alliance, the “largest network of donors dedicated to building the progressive movement in the United States.”  Each deep-pocketed liberal donor pledged to direct hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding to approved left-wing groups to plot the next steps of the “resistance.”   Nancy Pelosi was featured, along with George Soros, in headline addresses.

According to another document obtained by the Free Beacon, Geoge Soros, who co-founded Democracy Alliance, is pushing to elect liberal prosecutors in 2018, and is further pushing behind the scenes to fund an even-more-radical plan to potentially take away the people’s right to elect judges.   Link

Although the Democracy Alliance went to great lengths to keep the identities of its members and guests confidential at its fall conference from Wednesday, November 17 through 19 at CA’s La Costa Resort, the Washington Free Beacon obtained a detailed conference agenda that lists both events and featured guests.  Among those in attendance was Washington Post reporter Janell Ross, who closely covered the 2016 presidential campaign for the Washington Post and has since continued to cover the Trump administration. Ms. Ross attended the progressive movement conference without notifying her superiors. 

The role of patriots

Patriots must demand the media stop catering to this extreme opposition group and instead expose these facts.  Opposition groups can be helpful, but what Leftist groups have done and continue to do is dangerous at several levels.

President Trump was fairly elected by “we the people.”  What has been happening since goes well beyond partisan politics, some believe it even rises to the level of treason.  Unfortunately, even once trusted media sources no longer can be relied upon to be impartial. That is a major detriment to our people and country.

Fortunately, there are still honest, bi-partisan media sources. Each of us must seek them for accurate information or risk being influenced by those with an agenda opposite from that established by our forefathers, as evidenced in our amazing Constitution.  We don’t need drastic “changes,” we need common sense solutions which are presented and voted upon by our elected officials.

Do you have self-reflective moments when you are reminded that your days on Earth are limited and thus ponder whether you used your time wisely?  Remember sitting in a boring classroom as a young student? It seemed time went by so slowly, but looking back on life as a mature adult we wonder how the years escaped us so quickly.

These are the times we tend to reflect upon the paths we chose and the footprint we made through the years. It is often in these quiet times, later in life, when we have thoughts of whether we accomplished our goals; if we had done more good than harm; what we might have done better, what we should have or should not have done at all. We think about whether our lives have made a positive difference in some way, and finally, how our remaining time might be best spent.

Francis Schaeffer, a brilliant theologian, philosopher, and prolific writer offered this advice in his famous book How Should We Then Live. “Most people catch their presuppositions from their family and surrounding society, the way that a child catches the measles. But people with understanding realize that their presuppositions should be chosen after a careful consideration of which worldview is true.”  Most agree with Schaeffer’s conclusion, but it seems we are too often caught up in daily routines and plans that have allotted little, if any, time for any serious thoughts on subjects beyond what is on our schedule for the day or week.

Will we reach the end of our lives without having done as  Schaeffer suggests: decide what is most important and whether our lives, in the end, will reflect a purpose rather than just having taken up space?  Did we live largely for ourselves, our immediate pleasures, within a routine that in the end will seem disappointing to us, or will we end with a testimony of having lived a thoughtful, purposeful life that extended beyond ourselves; a life that helped others in some way and/or invested in making our world a bit better for our having been here?  Did we at least try to help make our country, state, neighbors and/or families a bit better by our example, efforts, and actions?

Each year we see ways that families and communities are failing.  We may complain, but do we volunteer to help do something constructive to make positive changes in the right direction?  It is our choice whether to seek facts and stand for truth or be an echo of the loudest among us, even if that voice is wrong and giving fake information.

Schaeffer, who died in 1984, also offered this statement for our consideration: “If man is not made in the image of God, nothing then stands in the way of inhumanity. There is no good reason why mankind should be perceived as special. Human life is cheapened. We can see this in many of the major issues being debated in our society today: abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, the increase of child abuse and violence of all kinds, pornography, the routine torture of political prisoners in many parts of the world, the crime explosion, and the random violence which surrounds us.”

Schaeffer’s words, spoken decades ago, indicate how the issues we face today still remain, but some now seem to be on steroids. They are not just politically based, but many have their source in that which is spiritual and consistent with matters humanity has always faced.

Each of us is responsible to make decisions, most on a daily basis, as to how we will live; whether that will be from a place of thoughtful consideration and purpose driven actions, or whether they will be impulsive actions that satisfy us quickly but lack the substance needed for enduring stability, comfort, or success.  Will our choice be to simply exist in an unplanned daily routine avoiding conversations that are uncomfortable?Will we waste our lives with daily routines which have few, if any, altruistic purposes and then realize too late we were caught up in a monotonous trap with little time to make appropriate, needed changes?

There are so many worthy organizations, groups, churches, books, and internet sources that can teach, inspire, and offer ways and ideas to enrich our lives as well as others within our sphere of influence.  As we interact with others we are awakened to new thoughts and ideas by sharing facts, theories, and possibilities. Listening and contemplating others’ suggestions create an atmosphere that opens one’s mind to new possibilities. It is far more productive than believing we have nothing to learn.

Sadly, the discourse in America and the World today has become largely divisive and defensive.  Rather than unite us, it divides. Media sources no longer seek facts, they strive to find ways to promote their specific viewpoint. Politicians are less interested in doing what is best for their constituents and more concerned how a decision or vote will impact their own career.  Families go in a dozen different directions daily, few of which they all go together.  Churches, a place where the vast number of Americans once spent their Sunday mornings, have been closing due to lack of support and/or attendance.  Yet this is the one place where love, faith, family, and integrity are taught, all of which are the ingredients for lasting marriages, loving families, and tolerance of all people no matter whether they share little else in common.

None of us know the immediate future, but we all know one day our life here on Earth will end.  As we get closer to that inevitable day, will we have deep regrets we did not use our days wisely, or will we have a peace knowing we made thoughtful decisions and good use of the time we were given?    Will we be able to recount accomplishments and the fulfillment of goals with few regrets?

Did we strive to engage in matters that not only just impact us or our immediate families, but also our communities, our state, and/or country? Those who have been self-absorbed and paid little attention to all around them have missed important opportunities to make a positive difference in everyone’s lives.

There will always be that which was and is out of our control, but the decisions of how we live and what we do are ultimately ours to make.  It is these choices that we will reflect upon one day, either with regrets, or knowing we did our best to make each day one that was productive and had promising results.  Living a purpose driven life will always be a solace no matter what life has delivered.It has often been said:  “A life spent with no real purpose is a wasted one.”

Our choice will not only be important during our last days, but making educated, purposeful decisions every day is the key to a successful life, whether that involves our families or beyond.   As we exist in a world in which there are many  paths and directions one can take, we have no one to blame but ourselves if we do not choose wisely.

As with every mass shooting, the mainstream media has been promoting the idea that Devin Patrick Kelly’s firearm was responsible for killing almost 30 people during a Sunday church service in Texas.

What they love to ignore, however, is the fact that the massacre ended early because an armed citizen decided to shoot back.  While the chances of finding yourself in a mass shooting are minuscule, that doesn’t mean you don’t have an inherent right to self-defense and why bringing a gun to Church in states where permitted is a good idea. The blood had not even been washed from the floor and scrubbed from the pews of the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs before the Progressives put out the call for more gun-control laws and new attempts to educate the yokels about the ineffectiveness of prayer.

This report by NBC News is so wrong as to what Trump had to say after the Texas church shooting in his reference to gun related killings in Chicago.  New York laws are much stricter than Chicago. You need a license just to purchase a gun, which takes several months at a cost of several hundred dollars. You can only have one, and no long guns are permitted.

  • All guns are “funneled into” Chicago, because Chicago has no gun shops, despite a federal court order to allow them.
  • New York has had the strictest gun laws in the nation since the Sullivan Act was passed in 1911,
  • Homicides in New York surpassed 2200 per year prior to Rudy Giuliani terms as mayor (1994-2001). Giuliani used the “broken window” doctrine, which postulates that lax enforcement of minor laws leads to more major crime, and vice versa.
  • Giuliani and his successor, Michael Blumberg, also subscribed to the “stop and frisk” policy, where police would detain people for suspicious behavior, especially in high crime neighborhoods.
  • By the end of his term as mayor, gun deaths had dropped below 300 per year, in a city four times the size of Chicago.
  • Advances in crime prevention by Giuliani have been abandoned by Mayor DeBladio for political reasons. Chicago, on the other hand, has been under “progressive” leadership for many decades, and never subscribed to Giuliani’s methods. Instead, police are obligated to fill out a form for each stop, taking about 30 minutes each time. As a result, fewer stops, more crime.

Indiana gun shows allow face-to-face purchases between non-dealers without a background check. You must prove you are a resident of Indiana.  Licensed dealers, who comprise most of the sellers at gun shows, always require completion of ATF form 4473 together with an NICS background check, per federal law.

What happened in Sutherland is a tragedy on many counts, An entire family was wiped out, and everybody in that town knew one of the victims. The ultimate blame lies solely with the shooter, but many other errors allowed him to perpetrate his awful deed. Any one of the following counts would have prevented him from buying a firearm in the United States.

  • He was involuntarily committed to a mental institution, from which he escaped, for threatening a superior office with a firearm.
  • He was convicted by the Air Force on two counts of domestic abuse, and sentenced to 12 months in prison (any sentence of 1 year or longer, regardless of time served).
  • He received a dishonorable discharge from the Air Force.

Of what use is the “universal background check” demanded (misleadingly) by gun-control advocates, when convictions and facts are withheld from the NICS data base? The government (Air Force) failed badly, yet millions of law abiding gun owners are asked to give up their rights as though that would help.

The church in Sutherland was, by Texas law, a gun-free zone. While Texas is a gun-friendly state with regard to concealed carry, none of the parishioners in that church could be legally armed. Progressives would like to keep it that way, and a similar measure has been proposed several times in Illinois, most recently sponsored by alderman Burke of Chicago. Time after time, only a good guy with a gun can stop a bad guy with a gun, whether the good guy is a police officer or ordinary citizen, as in Sutherland. There, a passerby heard the screams and shooting, retrieved his own rifle and wounded the gunman as he targeted others outside the church, causing him to drop his weapon and flee.

Twenty-three places are denied to concealed carry in Illinois, including public transportation, which has seen many instances of robbery, assault, even machete attacks. There’s something about a gun-free zone that attracts criminals. Perhaps they fear an armed victim more than a jaded judge.

 

Lt. Colonel Allen West keynoted Illinois Family Institute’s annual fundraiser in late October. The West, who is now featured often on Fox News and other media outlets, served in the United States Army from 1982 to 2004 and participated in the Persian Gulf War and Iraq War. Among awards he won was a Bronze Star. A member of the Republican Party, West represented Florida’s 22nd congressional district in the House from 2011 to 2013.  He is also a proud Tea Party member.

It would have been natural for West to speak about his military service, but instead he spoke on the issues of “faith, conservative values, and freedom.” After reminding guests that Illinois was the home of this nation’s first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, in a party established in 1854, West’s initial remarks focused on dressing up for Halloween and how costumes are now judged as to their political correctness.  To which West suggested, “Why not dress up as Martin Luther as this historical figure is important for sharing at home, church, and in our communities?”

West bemoaned the fact that children are not being taught the date of the Protestant Reformation, but we are instead allowing other people to indoctrinate our children. West explained that it was 500 years ago on October 31, 1517 (Halloween), that Martin Luther defiantly nailed a copy of his 95 Theses, a list of questions and propositions for debate, to the door of the Wittenberg Castle church. In the aftermath, people were now able to worship God as they believed and no longer needed to rely on the Catholic Church for guidance for religious matters. As such, man now had the right to have a relationship with their Creator.

John Locke and the American Constitution

West then went on to explain how John Locke, a 17th century Englishman, was the single most important influence in the founding of this nation. Locke, at the time, expressed the radical view that the duty of government is morally obliged to serve people, namely by protecting their natural rights of Life, Liberty, and Property.  He believed that all our spiritual rights come from our creator.  Locke, in his writing, also explained the principle of checks and balances to limit government power. He favored representative government and a rule of law. He likewise denounced tyranny and insisted that when government violates individual rights, people may legitimately rebel.

Our Founding Fathers, specifically Thomas Jefferson, was tasked with writing a similar document.  Jefferson drew heavily upon John Locke in establishing America’s First Principles, most notably, the recognition of unalienable rights as those of Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of Happiness, and that these rights come from our Creator.  One of Locke’s ideas that greatly influenced Jefferson as he drafted the Declaration of Independence was that if government should fail to protect these right, its citizens would have the right to overthrow that government.  Unknown to many is that Property Rights, one of Locke’s three unalienable rights, was not included in our Constitution. Property rights was replaced by the Pursuit of Happiness, as slaves were considered property at the time.

West next focused his comments on our first inalienable right, that of life as coming from our Creator.

Do Black Lives Matter in Chicago?

West questioned why Black lives didn’t matter to Obama when he was president, given the multiples shooting deaths that are taking place almost daily. West then added that since Roe vs. Wade 13 million black babies have been aborted, which really means they have been murdered.  As to why there are so many “murdered babies” among black women, West offered this reason. “They haven’t been informed about Margaret Sangerwho founded Planned Parenthood.”  Sanger was a leading advocate of the eugenics movement, specifically of negative eugenics, which promoted the reduction of sexual reproduction and sterilization of people with undesired traits or economic conditions.  She also thought that the white race was superior. West suggested that Sanger’s face be plastered on billboards to be viewed by the public, such as when he drove from O’Hare to Hoffman Estates to speak.  West chastised those on the Right for fearing to get out on the battlefield for this issue and others to fight against the suicidal ideas of the progressive Left.

According to West, the Left has no need to honor God as the Creator, for it is the Left who will decide and deliver what they think you should or should not have or know. This is the path our country is now on.  The Left is not about allowing people to have individual liberty, which is the first right in our Bill of Rights

Left’s Erosion of Freedom of Religion

West went on to question whether we still have freedom of religion at a time when the Left is attempting to remove what Martin Luther accomplished 500 years ago. According to West, it is important that the threat from the Left be understood.  West related a story of Benjamin Franklin’s encounter with a woman on the day the U.S. Constitution was adopted, September 17, 1787.  As the deliberations of the Constitutional Convention were held in strict secrecy, anxious citizens gathered outside Independence Hall to learn what had been produced behind closed doors.  A Mrs. Powel of Philadelphia asked Benjamin Franklin, “Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” With no hesitation whatsoever, Franklin responded, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

West cautioned guests not to be afraid of being called names for speaking out about issues based on their own moral and religious principles, for as the adage goes: “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but names will never hurt me.”  West related how he has often been called an Oreo and other derogatory names, but how could names hurt him when he has been in the thick of combat?

This Bible verse was quoted by West as appropriate when facing challenges (Romans Chapter 8):

“What shall we then say to these things?  If God be for us, who can be against us?”

Lastly, West questioned what legacy each of us would leave at our final resting place.  Will it be that we stood for the principles and laws of our nation?  As West reminded those gathered, “It doesn’t take 30,000 or 3,000 to help change the direction of this nation, but only people like you who are here tonight.”  West then intoned:  “My God bless the people here tonight and Illinois.”

Questions asked of Lt. Colonel Alan West

About Rules of Engagement: The three soldiers now sitting in the U.S. Penitentiary at  Leavenworth should be offered pardons.  Under the Trump administration decision-making has been speeded up to allow the military to move more quickly on raids, airstrikes, bombing missions and arming allies in Iraq.  Soldiers are now sitting in prison because they acted without permission to take action in what they perceived as a matter of self-defense.

About obtaining justice in the selling 20% of this nation’s uranium to the Russians:People are rising up and beginning to understanding there is a different system of justice for us and for those who consider themselves above us on the other side of the aisle. We must defend what is justice and demand those involved are lined up in orange jumpsuits.

About the Muslim Brotherhood: Founded in 2004, it’s the granddaddy of Islam Jihadism. The Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization.  President Trump should issue an executive order to declare it a terrorist organization.  On May 7, 2017, the Clarion Project detailed what the Muslim Brotherhood believes in – namely the establishment of an Islamic caliphate as a system of government and the implementation of sharia as state law. The Muslim Brotherhood strategy is patient. It should also not be considered as a single cohesive organization, but rather as a toxic supremacist political ideology which can manifest in many different groups.

IFI celebrates 25 years

Prior to West’s speech, Illinois Family Institute’s Executive Director David E. Smith heralded the organization’s 25th Anniversary.

Serving as Masters of Ceremonies was Julie Roys, host of Up For Debate, a national talk show on the Moody Radio Network, carried on 145 stations nationwide.  She’s also the author of Redeeming the Feminine Soul:  God’s Surprising Vision for Womanhood, in which Roys describes her journey from feeling like a misfit to discovering the value of the feminine in the eyes of God. A free book was handed out to each banquet guest at the event’s conclusion.

In addressing the estimated 300 attendees, Smith urged guests not to yet pack the moving van to move out of Illinois. Smith believes Illinois can be turned around by bringing a Biblical prospective to public policy.  Smith then went on to explain the consequences of HB40 being signed into law.  It may result in up to 55,000 abortions a year and cost the state upwards to $60 million.  Governor Rauner signed this radical bill after promising not to sign it. Three more pro-life Republican votes would have stopped HB40 from becoming law.

Smith noted other bills denoting wickedness that have been passed in Springfield, expressly HB1785. In August of this year, Illinois Gov. Rauner signed HB1785 that modernized Illinois law to now allow transgender and intersex individuals to change the gender marker on their birth certificate without undergoing gender reassignment surgery.

IFI awards conservative leadership

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of awards. This year there was a new award, The Titanium Backbone Award, presented to Illinois Rep. Jeanne Ives. State Rep. Jeanne Ives is currently circulating petitions to run in the GOP primary against Gov. Bruce Rauner. She believes Republicans need a choice because Rauner has failed the integrity test.

Two freedom awards were presented. The recipients were Rev. Wes Modder and Joseph M. Scheidler. Rev. Wes Modder, pastor of Stone Church, Orland Park, IL, is a retired Marine and Christian former military chaplain in the United States Navy. He appeared in national headlines after the US Navy denied him religious accommodation to preach according to his denomination’s doctrine on marriage and sexuality.

90-year old Joseph M. Scheidler is National Director of the Pro-Life Action League, a national pro-life educational and activist organization headquartered in Chicago.  Joe left a career in public relations to become a full-time pro-life activist shortly after the U.S Supreme Court issued its Roe v. Wade opinion in 1973.  Mr. Scheidler is also an author. His book Racketeer for Life: Fighting the Culture of Death from the Sidewalk to the Supreme Court came out in hardcover on November 30,

It should not be a surprise that Democrats are using every opportunity possible to criticize President Trump and members of his administration; this is what the opposition party often does. This can be beneficial to our country when it provides opposing viewpoints and forces both governing bodies to defend their positions by providing facts and examples. The public would like to think these elected men and woman who have altruistic motives and are equipped with logic, superior intelligence, and facts enabling them to make wise decisions.

However, we are reminded of this quote by H.L. Mencken:

“Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule – and both commonly succeed and are right.”

Whether Mencken’s statement was “tongue-in-cheek” or not, his evaluation is probably truer than we would like to admit. That is why the public often turns to the media in the hope this source is unbiased, will seek all the facts, and provide an objective analysis of the day’s political news.  Is that happening in America today? Most Americans do not think so.

Americans once thought of media sources as objective with eyes and ears close to the issues of the day and thus positioned to analyze and provide the public with unbiased facts. We trusted them to respect their audience, without persuading them toward a specific opinion on issues. However, the media has evolved into being a very big business and as such depends upon advertisers, subscribers, and public opinion for its success. Thus, when the choice becomes profit over accuracy, profit wins most every time. Add to that the elements that attract subscribers, such as sensationalizing issues, stressing conflict, and throwing in fear tactics, all of which tend to grab people’s attention. Most media sources provide what their customers want, even if that requires some carefully crafted distortions or fake news reports. A growing number of media sources mislead through headlines that claim the exact opposite of information provided in the article. These sources have determined many of us are “headline readers” who form our opinions by a quick read of headlines, rarely the entire article.

The Existence of Media Bias

An interesting discussion is whether the media influences public opinion or if public opinion influences the media. We do know that for the past few decades a majority of American people no longer find most media sources fair and balanced.  Proof is in a 2016 study by Gallup which indicated only about 30% of Americans trust the media and only 14% of Republicans do so. The average, modern media source often spends more time trying to entertain and/or shock viewers, rather than provide irrefutable facts about important issues. The media pretends to be an objective, investigative source, but evidence indicates otherwise.  Intensive investigative type reporting in the style of Watergate is rare today.

Nobody disputes that media bias exists.  Consider the 2016 election and first year of Donald Trump’s presidency for proof of the sad deterioration of bi-partisan journalism today.  Attacks by various media sources against President Trump have been and continue to be unprecedented.  That is far different than the lack of scrutiny the media applied to Barack Obama.  Gone are the days when media sources fairly reported only facts, without cleverly inserting his/her specific political viewpoint. This is unfortunate because the intent of the media should be accuracy and fairness rather than using their position for partisan politicizing.

Media Bias Determined by Audience

The difference in how specific media sources report news can be evidenced in their audiences.  For instance, most Conservatives trust FOX almost exclusively for their news, possibly because there are few other Conservative news sources available.  Some find this fact, only one main Conservative T.V. programming, quite “telling” and an important subject for discussion.  Most of the media leans to the Left by varying degrees, giving Liberals many choices and chances to be indoctrinated with one-sided information. The most popular sources are CNN, NPR, MSNB, and the New York Times.

According to surveys, only 52.8% of internet users believe information online is “reliable and accurate. That is why many have used sources like SNOPES to check a story’s accuracy.  However, while this site does investigate and provide facts for the public, they are not immune to receiving false information during their investigations.

A classic example of the difficulty in determining fact from fiction is seen regarding George Soros and varying reports about him in Germany during the Nazi years. It is becoming exceedingly difficult for the average person to discern fact from fiction even when an effort is made to do so.

Hollywood may be the most Liberal of all media sources and is unapologetic about influencing public opinion on specific issues, while at the same time critical of those with whom they disagree.  Madonna has been one of several such personalities making horrendous public statements against our President.  She tweeted: “I’m ashamed to be American.” Perhaps she missed the irony of how a majority of Americans find her comments shameful, such as wanting to blow up the White House after Trump’s election.  I suspect she was surprised when her hateful comments produced shock from the American public, because most of her Hollywood friends agree with her.  At a recent dinner event, each guest paid $5,000 to hear this woman disrespect President Trump and encouraged her with laughter.

Manipulation of Facts Rampant

Sadly, the biased Liberal media has made it a priority to manipulate facts and shape news stories for a long time. These sources have lost all pretenses of fair and balanced reporting. This is not helpful to America’s future. It is exceedingly difficult for the average person to know the truth, without a fair and balanced media, and it is fair to say the future of America is at the mercy of media sources who control manipulating “talking points.” Without a fair and balanced media, how can the public know what to believe?

Is there any possibility of correcting this polarization of media viewpoints?  The surprising answer may be yes!  Hope is possible as we consider the transformation experienced by former liberal, NPR CEO, Ken Stern, who recently made this amazing statement: “I left the Liberal bubble and learned to love the Right.”  How did this happen? He traveled around the Country attending Conservative events and talking with evangelicals.  He not only listened at Tea Party meetings, he heard what they were saying. Stern agreed with much of their reasoning and saw that their conclusions were credible.  To the dismay of his Liberal friends, Stern began to alter his previous views on controversial topics such as gun control.

Perhaps this is the answer to the polarization in American politics today. We all need to get out of our political “bubbles” whether a politician, a media source or citizen, so we can better understand all sides of controversial issues.  Perhaps every media source would do well to consider this quote from Carl Bernstein:

“The lowest form of popular culture – lack of information, misinformation, disinformation, and a contempt for the truth or the reality of most people’s lives – has overrun real journalism. Today, ordinary Americans are being stuffed with garbage.”

Bernstein should know, as he has been in the industry most of his life and is noted for being an excellent journalist and judge of people.