HOW CAN WE AS GOOD CITIZENS ENSURE THE INTEGRITY OF OUR ELECTIONS? — PART 1

Horns of a goat and a ram, goat’s fur and ears, nose and canines of a pig; a typical depiction of the devil in Christian art. The goat, ram and pig are consistently associated with the devil. Detail of a 16th-century painting by Jacob de Backer in the National Museum in Warsaw. (from Devil (en.wikipedia.org))

Why Is It Necessary To Ensure The Integrity Of Our Elections?

Are you concerned about election integrity? The subject has most certainly been in the news. Some of us have great concerns about whether we can trust the vote. Others think concerns about election integrity are a big hullabuloo about nothing.

Is there an issue? Well, consider how carefully most of us protect our personal property.

  • When we leave our homes, we lock the doors. Some of us even purchase expensive home monitoring services.
  • When we go to the gym, we lock our street clothes (including our car keys and wallets) in lockers.
  • When we park our cars on the street or in public lots, we lock them up.
  • When we establish a bank account, we need to provide a photo ID to take money out.
  • When we use a credit card, we need to use that card to ID ourselves to spend money with that card, and we may even use a pin.
  • And so forth.

Isn’t election integrity just as serious a matter as protecting our personal property? In addition to the power to make and/or enforce the law, whoever wins an election gains control over huge amounts of wealth. So, it is important that we elect honest people, but how do we know when we have elected someone who is not honest? A good clue is that that person strangely has much more money to spend on himself. For example, a few years after their election that person may have several expensive homes in their possession. Where did all that money come from? Can’t you guess?

We often fail to pay our elected officials appropriate salaries. Arguably, to make pilfering public funds less tempting, we should pay school board members, county board members, and members of the General Assembly much more than we do. Unfortunately, many of us are so miserly we won’t pay our elected officials respectable salaries, and that works to the advantage of the dishonest. BECAUSE they are unwillingly to take bribes, relatively honest people cannot afford to run for public offices that require a lot of work, but don’t pay well. Thus, the crooked have much less competition when they run for public office. However, that’s another subject for another time.

The fact we don’t pay our elected officials well is not the fundamental problem with our election system. Isn’t a devil always whispering in our ears? Why do we so often listen? The real problem is that none of us is good. Consider how the Apostle Paul put it.

Romans 3:9-18 New American Standard Bible

9 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all; for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin; 10 as it is written:

“There is no righteous person, not even one;

11 There is no one who understands,

There is no one who seeks out God;

12 They have all turned aside, together they have become corrupt;

There is no one who does good,

There is not even one.”

13 “Their throat is an open grave,

With their tongues they keep deceiving,”

“The venom of asps is under their lips”;

14 “Their mouth is full of cursing and bitterness”;

15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood,

16 Destruction and misery are in their paths,

17 And they have not known the way of peace.”

18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Almost all of us may try to vote for people more intelligent and gifted than ourselves, but we also tend to vote for people who promise us a personal benefit in return for our vote. In return for that promise of a personal benefit we sacrifice voting for someone we hope will be more honest than our self. We only get honest leaders when we exercise a little honesty ourselves. We only get honest leaders when we vote with an honest desire to further the welfare of our family, friends, and neighbors.

When we vote we must begin with the understanding that none of us is good. We must accept the fact we cannot even trust ourselves to do what is right. Once we accept our own potential for corruptibility, then we will understand why we cannot give our leaders any more power than absolutely necessary. Few of us, if any, can resist the temptations of great power.

Consider this example.

As the coronavirus pandemic raged, Uncle Sam was doing more than putting money in unemployed Americans’ pockets — the federal government was also shipping tens of billions of dollars overseas to fraudsters working with the country’s most prominent adversaries, such as China and Russia.

Haywood Talcove, CEO for LexisNexis Risk Solutions’ government division, says 40% of the more than $700 billion spent on unemployment went to fraudsters. 

Most of that ill-gotten money — $175 billion of it — went to overseas actors. And most of that, perhaps $140 billion, went to organizations that are state-sponsored.

Continued => Feds pay billions to fraudsters tied to China and Russia in COVID-19 schemes – Washington Times

When we allow our leaders to bribe us to obtain our votes — with “other people’s money” — we elect people like ourselves, people more concerned with enriching themselves than in serving or in protecting the rights and property of others. Therefore, when we complain about our political leaders, we must admit we have no one to blame except ourselves.

  • We simply cannot find an honest man or woman, someone to vote for we can trust with great power.
  • When someone promises to use the power of government to give us “other people’s money,” we must resist our own greed. Otherwise, we won’t even vote for the most honest candidate on the ballot.
  • For the sake of our family, friends, and neighbors, we must hold our leaders accountable. We must monitor what our elected officials are doing and work to replace the crooks and the incompetent.
  • To protect our ability to control those who lead us, we must protect the integrity of our election system. That is the subject of this series.

What is next?

  • How Do We Volunteer To Be An Election Officer?
  • What About Election Laws?
  • How Are The Political Parties Involved?
  • What About Early Voting?
  • What About Counting The Absentee Vote?
  • What Can We Do To Get The General Assembly To Strengthen The Integrity Of Our Elections?

Posted in 2022 Election, Citizen Responsibilities, Constitutional Government, culture, religion | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The Prince William-Manassas Family Alliance (See below for latest blog posts.)

Supporting family values in Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park

Welcome to the website of the Prince William and Manassas Family Alliance (PWMFA). We are a grassroots organization of citizens of Prince William County and the independent cities of Manassas and Manassas Park, Virginia, dedicated to supporting and promoting the values inherent in the concept of family. Learn more about us.

Where they stand

  • The principal goal of the Family Alliance is to help Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park voters learn more about candidates seeking to represent them in public office. Our focus is especially directed at the County and City school boards, the Board of County Supervisors and Manassas and Manassas Park City Councils. We also concentrate on State legislative candidates with the aim of informing the voting public on where candidates stand regarding key issues affecting the family. Here are some of the projects we are currently undertaking:
    • We’re soliciting the positions of candidates seeking statewide and legislative public offices in both the General and Primary elections in the 2020 election cycle and publicizing the results.
    • We maintain an active website (www.familyallianceonline.org) to draw attention to school issues, elections and the need for Christian leadership on issues affecting the family.
    • We seek to build a network of church contacts throughout Prince William and the two cities (Manassas and Manassas Park) with the aim of promoting the institution of the family and an educated electorate.

Some of our Achievements

  • Led the successful campaign for the Marriage Amendment in 2006, carrying Prince William County and Manassas by a larger margin than statewide.
  • Led the successful fight against off-track betting in Manassas Park in 2004.
  • Distributed Voter Guides to Prince William County churches area.
  • Successfully promoted internet filtering in public libraries and abstinence-based family life education.
  • Cited by The Federalist in Virginia Plans For All Public Schools To Allow Boys In Girls’ Bathrooms (thefederalist.com).

The 2020 Election

  • Nominating Conventions and Primary Elections: Prepared Voter Guides for the Republican Party’s nominating conventions and the June 23 Primary Races.
  • General Election: Prepared Voter Guides that focused upon the incumbent’s voting records.

Affect Public Policy – Help Us Protect our Community

Support our efforts! Visit our “Get Involved” section to join the PWMFA or to make an “online” contribution.

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HOW CAN WE AS GOOD CITIZENS MONITOR OUR ELECTIONS? — PART 2

In Part 1 (Why Is It Necessary To Ensure The Integrity Of Our Elections? | Prince William-Manassas Family Alliance (familyallianceonline.org)), we considered why we should be concerned about the integrity of our elections. Here we will look at something we can do to ensure the integrity of our elections.

How Do We Volunteer To Be An Election Officer?

So, what can we do personally as good citizens to ensure that our elections are honest? We can participate in the process of collecting and counting the vote. We can volunteer to be an election officer. How do we volunteer? In Prince William County the first step is to go to Elections & Registration | pwcvotes. Go to the main menu bar and look for Elections & Registration. Click on Elections & Registration. When the drop down menu appears, click on Become an Election Officer. That will bring up Become an Election Officer | pwcvotes. This page links to an online application. In addition, Become an Election Officer | pwcvotes tells provides us information about the job. Check it out.

Does just volunteering mean you will be chosen to be an election officer? No. Virginia Law provides the ground rules. Check out Election Law – Virginia Department of Elections, but don’t worry. We don’t have to read the whole thing. It is worthwhile, however, to see what § 24.2-115. Appointment, qualifications, and terms of officers of election (virginia.gov) says. Note this part in particular.

Not less than three competent citizens shall be appointed for each precinct. However, a precinct having more than 4,000 registered voters shall have not less than five officers of election serving for a presidential election, and the electoral board shall appoint additional officers as needed to satisfy this requirement. Insofar as practicable, each officer shall be a qualified voter of the precinct he is appointed to serve, but in any case a qualified voter of the Commonwealth. In appointing the officers of election, representation shall be given to each of the two political parties having the highest and next highest number of votes in the Commonwealth for Governor at the last preceding gubernatorial election. The representation of the two parties shall be equal at each precinct having an even number of officers and shall vary by no more than one at each precinct having an odd number of officers. If practicable, officers shall be appointed from lists of nominations filed by the political parties entitled to appointments. The party shall file its nominations with the secretary of the electoral board at least 10 days before February 1 each year. The electoral board may appoint additional citizens who do not represent any political party to serve as officers. If practicable, no more than one-third of the total number of officers appointed for each precinct may be citizens who do not represent any political party.

§ 24.2-115. Appointment, qualifications, and terms of officers of election (virginia.gov)

Note that the two major political parties have a big say on who serves as an election. Because the integrity of our elections has become so controversial, the two major political parties have renewed their focus on nominating election officers. Their problem is that it is lots of work to put together a list of nominees. Why? Prince William County currently has 93 voting precincts, and we can expect number of precincts to grow after redistricting is finished. That means each party ideally needs at couple of hundred volunteers.

If you favor one of the two major political parties, and you are serious about serving as an election officer, then you can make it easier for your favorite political party. Youcan contact the local officials of your favorite party. Note that there is a February 1st deadline. So, you want to get this done NOW!

Here is a start for finding contact information.

What is next?

  • What About Election Laws?
  • How Are The Political Parties Involved?
  • What About Early Voting?
  • What About Counting The Absentee Vote?
  • What Can We Do To Get The General Assembly To Strengthen The Integrity Of Our Elections?
Posted in Citizen Responsibilities | 2 Comments

STILL DOING NOTHING?

Have you observed this? We live in the midst of a Pagan revival, but modern Pagans don’t think of themselves as Pagans. Many fool themselves by calling themselves Atheists, but everyone believes in something.

What is the source of confusion? The mass media has identified the revival of Paganism by many other names: Post Christian, New Age (American Hinduism?), Marxism, the Nones, Human Secularism, Atheism, and so forth. Yet modern Pagans worship what Pagans have always adored: all the stuff we can acquire; pleasure, especially sex; knowledge, “science” that excuses our behavior; a powerful state that gives us whatever they want; and our self, that fellow that looks back at us in our precious mirrors. The One True God we refuse to acknowledge (See Romans 1:18-32 NASB – Unbelief and Its Consequences – For the – Bible Gateway).

Us? Yeah. Even those of us who claim to be Christians still nurse a streak of Paganism within our souls. Not one of us completely loves and obeys God.

Let’s consider several recent examples.

Pornography In The Public Schools

What is the most terrifying way this Pagan revival is being manifested? Pagans have set themselves to the task of corrupting our children. In our area, Fairfax County seems to be leading the way. Consider what they insist in putting into our school libraries.

FALLS CHURCH, Va. – Parents gathered outside the Fairfax County School Board meeting on Thursday, voicing their opposition to what they term pedophilia and “porn in schools” after Fairfax County Public Schools reintroduced two books containing depictions of sexual activity. 

“They’ve doubled down on porn in the schools. They’ve all got to go,” Stacy Langton, the Fairfax County mother who confronted the school board with images from the books in September, told Fox News. “Who’s in favor of porn in the schools?”

Continued => Fairfax County parents demand school board resign after ‘doubling down’ on ‘porn in schools’ | Fox News

What is both hilarious and startling about this story is that the Fairfax County Public Schools have put these books back into school libraries after insisting that they don’t contain pornography. That decision is at odds with the words of school board members. Check the video at Va. Mom Confronts Ed Board, Reading Schools’ Gay Porn (Language Advisory): Do Better FCPS | RealClearInvestigations. This video where the ruckus over those two books containing depictions of sexual activity started. Watch that short little video, and then try to figure out how those two books are fit for a school library, but unfit for the school board

Library Holiday Theme Display?

Unfortunately, the controversy over porn in school libraries probably won’t end soon. Apparently, some equate pedophilia with sacred literature.

A Northern Virginia public library removed a holiday-themed display this week that featured the Bible alongside two sexually explicit books at the center of a furious debate between school officials and parents who see the material as inappropriate for children.

The glass-enclosed display at McLean’s Dolley Madison Library included a copy of the Bible and copies of “Lawn Boy” by Jonathan Evison and “Gender Queer: A Memoir” by Maia Kobabe.

The two controversial books are available to students in Fairfax County Public Schools. Their graphic depictions of fellatio and other sexual acts involving children have created a furor. One of the books includes an image of a man masturbating a boy.

Librarians at Dolley Madison declined to comment, and the Fairfax County Public Library system said it would take no questions about the display.

Continued => Library takes down holiday-reading display featuring Bible lumped in with sexually explicit books – Washington Times

The Sacred Mask

Here we have an example from our very own Prince William County Schools, a mask mandate. What’s the story?

Parents once again demanded an end to a mask mandate in Prince William County Public Schools.

During a regular county School Board meeting at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, December 1, parents urged elected leaders and school division chief Dr. Latanya McDade to rescind a mask mandate that’s been in n place since August, the beginning of the current school year.

Making masks optional for students was the standard message parents aimed to get across. “Let those who want to wear them, and there should always be a choice,” said Kimberly Stewart.

Continued => Parents demanding an end to mask mandate represent the minority, says School Board member’s husband (potomaclocal.com)

Why is the sacred mask mandate needed? The Christian worldview assumes that God created the universe, that the universe follows certain rules, and miracles are the rare exception. Christians believe science involves the discovery of the rules God established for Creation. The Pagan worldview does not assume the logical design of a Creator God. That raises a puzzling question.What do Pagans mean by “following the science”? Without a Creator, must we follow the random dictates of the modern holy men (experts) or charismatic leaders? Too often, experts and leaders promote superstition instead of science. Instead of explaining the science, they demand we believe them because they are The Expert or The Dear Leader.

Scientists have actually measured the size of viruses. So, we know how small they are. However, it can get more complicated than just using a mask designed to filter out virus size particles. For example, after someone coughs or sneezes, the viruses that person may be spreading will probably be in water droplets. So, we have to ascertain how long a virus survives after those water droplets dry up. Otherwise, don’t know what kind of mask is needed to stop any particular virus.

In addition, there is this thing we call mask discipline. Even if we use an appropriate mask, we still have to use that mask properly, or it does no good. When even medical person find it difficult to maintain mask discipline, we have to wonder how well untrained adults and children can be taught to use a mask.

So, how are we deciding whether it does any good to use masks to stop COVID-19 in the public schools? Is our school board applying science or superstition? Do we have reliable studies that show masks actually work in practice? If masks work, why don’t they work? Why is COVID-19 still spreading where we have mask mandates?

Conclusion

News stories like the ones above suggest is how strong the Pagan Revival has become. How should Christians confront this Pagan revival? What does the Bible say?

Matthew 28:16-20 New American Standard Bible

But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated to them. And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some were doubtful. And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

How do we make disciples? One way is to raise our children as Christians. Another way is set a good example, a Christian example, for our neighbors. We love our neighbors. That includes helping them when we can. Helping our neighbors involves many things. Doing our best to make certain our government works properly is one of those things.

Look at our public schools. Are these government-run schools working properly? What can we do to make certain that our schools do work?

Additional References

Posted in Citizen Responsibilities, Health Care, religion, School Choice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

NOEL OR NO EL?

Front and western side of New Hope Christian Church, located at 742 New Hope Road at Danieltown in Brunswick County, Virginia, United States. (from File:New Hope Christian Church, Danieltown.jpg – Wikipedia)
Good church? Bad church? The picture does not tell us. The building is beautiful, but as Revelation 2-3 explains, God judges the people who make up a church. When we can, we should honor our Lord with a fine building, but we must remember the church is the congregation, not the building.

This morning in church we sang “The First Noel” because it’s the Christmas season. The chorus repeats, “Noel, noel, noel, noel; born is the king of Israel.” According to references on the world-wide web, “Noel” means “Christmas.” Thus, we sang “The First Christmas.” God with us.

Yet there are many churches that bear the connotation of Christian that will sing “No El” this Christmas. The same carol. Different meaning. “El” in the Hebrew is a shortening of the word “Elohim” meaning “God.” Translated, “No El” means “No God.” Same carol. Two words, not one. Different meaning entirely.

Revelation 3 bears the interaction Jesus had with the church at Laodicea. He said it was neither burning hot nor freezing cold. Not hot, not cold. Lukewarm.

When you’re drastically thirsty in summer’s heat, do you enjoy a drink of water that is room temperature? Lukewarm? Not at all thirst-quenching! You want to spit it out. That’s what Jesus said about the Laodicean church. Lukewarm. It made Him want to vomit.

Why? Because it was a church not fervent in its love for Him. It had rejected Him. We know that because Jesus was standing outside a closed door at Laodicea knocking to come in. He was waiting for someone to open the door. Instead, the Laodiceans were satisfied with themselves just as they were—room temperature. No shortcomings, no needs, no desires for better. They didn’t need God to change the atmosphere. And Jesus said, “I will vomit you out of my mouth”.

Many churches today fit the description of Laodicea. They observe traditions handed down over generations. Religious traditions make them feel good. Christmas is only one of them.

Check out the songs they sing. Week after week. Lots of truth in the words, but members sing them by rote. The vital realities penned by writers of former decades or even centuries are only words fitted to a familiar melody.

The order of service is never invaded by a supernatural visitation from the Holy Spirit. Predictable continuity reigns. Peoples’ ears are tickled by the sermon, but repentance never grips them. They’re satisfied with the status quo. Lukewarm. Vomit material.

Malachi, the last book of the Old Testament, deals with the same heart-set in Israel of the day. The Hebrews were going through the motions of worship, but their hearts were not in it. They embraced God with their words, but not with their hearts.

Malachi challenged them in God’s stead to engage with God in dialogue or testing of what He had promised them. The very last word of the book, the end of the Old Testament, is “curse.” How telling is that?

Timothy of the New Testament warns that in the Last Days before the coming of Christ to earth again the love of many will grow cold. In other words, professed believers will not embrace God for all He is and will settle for religion, not a living relationship with Him. He puts it this way: “…lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power…” They sound like, they act like they are true believers of the Gospel, but their hearts are not in it.

If you find yourself in a church that perpetuates that lifelessness, find one that embraces God fully. In the meantime, ask God to come to you in reality and reveal Himself to you. Confess your emptiness and love of pleasure to Him; He knows it already, but wants to hear it from your own lips. That’s called confession. Then submit to Him and His will for your life. Read His words to you in the Bible. Think about what you read. Obey it. You will see your own life transformed as only God can do.

Then, at Christmas and always, you can sing, “The First Noel” and mean it: Christmas. No curse. God has come! God is with you!

Just open the door.

— Posted by Tom Salmon for Doris, a fellow member of the Prince William and Manassas Family Alliance

Posted in 2024 Election, Doris' Posts, history | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on NOEL OR NO EL?