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Archive for the ‘Recent News & Events’ Category

What a Woman’s Worth

Posted by thelamp on June 18, 2007

May marks the beginning of graduation season. On college and university campuses across America, a new crop of young adults will grip their degrees, toss their hats in the air and hope to land a job. A poignant Washington Post article explains that within the first year of entering the real world, female grads will learn precisely what separates them from their male counterparts in the workforce: their pay (“Her Pay Gap Begins Right After Graduation”).

The article is based on “Behind the Pay Gap,” a study released April 23 by the American Association of University Women.

“One year out of college, women working full time earn only 80 percent as much as their male colleagues earn,” the report states. “Ten years after graduation, women fall farther behind, earning only 69 percent as much as men earn.”

Although individuals can make choices that enhance their earning potential, it’s clear that society has yet to value women for what they are truly worth. So what can be done to rectify this social injustice? The American Association of University Women suggests that publicly recognizing the disparity as a problem is the place to begin.

Unfortunately, too often both men and women dismiss the pay gap as merely a matter of different choices. In reality, though, even women who make the same occupational choices that men make won’t bring home the same paycheck.

In education, a field dominated primarily by females, women earn 95 percent of what men earn. By contrast, in biological sciences where more men are in the mix, women earn only 75 percent of their male peers.

Despite the progress women have made over the past three decades, equity in pay remains an issue. Gender pay discrimination is difficult to document, and typically is discovered only after other possible explanations have been eliminated.

“These unexplained gaps are evidence of discrimination, which remains a serious problem for women in the work force,” the women’s association study concluded.

“I’m not looking for an America that just gets a little better from here,” said Pastor Rod Parsley. “I’m not just looking for an end to the empires of pornography that objectify women; I’m looking for a society that revolts against the idea of a woman only earning 80 cents compared to every dollar a man makes doing the same job.”

It’s possible that some bosses subconsciously make discriminatory decisions about pay based on personal beliefs about gender roles. So Christian employers and managers with responsibility for setting wages have a duty to take notice of such inequities and become agents for change.

The American Association of University Women notes that leadership is critical to changing attitudes and policies within an organization. Without a concerted commitment at the top, pay-equity policies are unlikely to be taken seriously.


Posted in Center for Moral Clarity, civil rights, CMC, equal pay, Equal Rights, jobs, men and women, Recent News & Events | Leave a Comment »

Waging War Over Wages and War

Posted by thelamp on June 18, 2007

The current federal minimum wage is insufficient to keep hard-working men and women out of poverty. So when the new Democrat-controlled Congress announced plans to increase pay at the bottom of the scale from $5.15 to $7.25 per hour, America’s workers logically assumed they would be getting a raise. Now, it seems that what the congressional leadership really meant was that hourly workers would get a raise if U.S. troops pull out of Iraq.

Click here to urge Congress to give workers the minimum wage increase they were promised.

Inflation has eroded the value of the minimum wage over the past decade to the point where it is worth less today, in real terms, than at any time since 1955. Putting more money in laborers’ pockets is important – so important that five months ago House Speaker Nancy Pelosi vowed the matter would be addressed within the first 100 hours of the 110th Congress. Although Congress has debated the raise Americans need and deserve, lawmakers haven’t exactly delivered on their promise.

Instead of pushing the pay hike on its merits through the House and Senate, Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., tethered the minimum-wage provisions to the contentious $100-billion Iraq war spending bill. What a dirty trick to pull on people who work for a living, because President Bush has made it clear he will veto the war bill.

“This isn’t about getting a minimum wage increase done, it’s another political stunt that only further delays action,” said White House spokesman Tony Fratto.

If President Bush does in fact veto the legislation, lawmakers who support a minimum wage increase will have to go back to the drawing board. This is a needless detour.

On the wage issue alone, Democrats and Republicans had reached a compromise. Democrats want an increase in the federal minimum wage so the nation’s lowest paid workers don’t have to live like paupers. Republicans oppose an increase in the minimum wage because it could hurt the small businesses that employ those workers. Nevertheless, the president has said he will sign a bill with a minimum wage increase if it includes tax cuts for businesses.

Last week, House and Senate negotiators had crafted a deal. The lawmakers agreed to a package of $4.8 billion in tax breaks for businesses to accompany the minimum wage increase.

Unfortunately, finding common ground regarding the war in Iraq isn’t as cut and dried. Whether to fund the war – and any accompanying timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq – is a passionate issue on all sides.

Consequently, it is completely inappropriate for legislators to attach any other bills to it – particularly the proposed pay increase for minimum-wage employees.

Click here to urge Congress to give workers the minimum wage increase they were promised.


Posted in Center for Moral Clarity, CMC, Recent News & Events | Leave a Comment »

Seeing is Believing

Posted by thelamp on June 18, 2007

When an expectant mother casts her eyes on an image of the thumb-sucking bairn nestled in her womb, it’s difficult to deny the truth – the bundle in her belly is a living, breathing baby. Knowing this, protectors of the preborn are pushing to make it easier for any woman considering an abortion to first look at an ultrasound picture of the little one whose life depends on her mercy.

Click here to ask Congress to pass the Informed Choice Act.

Click here to sign the CMC petition

According to statistical research, a woman is 80 percent more likely to change her mind about an abortion if she has information that encourages her to reflect on the procedure ahead of time. For this reason, the Center for Moral Clarity supports the Informed Choice Act, H.R. 223, which would authorize the federal secretary of Health and Human Services to make grants to nonprofit organizations for the purchase of ultrasound equipment.

Passing this bill would enable clinics nationwide to provide free examinations to pregnant women – and give them a peek through the window to the womb.

Along with funding grants for purchasing ultrasound equipment, the Informed Choice Act would:

  • Require clinics to show the visual image of the fetus from the ultrasound examination to each pregnant woman with a general anatomical and physiological description of the fetus;
  • Give each pregnant woman the approximate age of the embryo or fetus;
  • Provide information on abortion and alternatives to abortion, such as childbirth and adoption, and information concerning public and private agencies that will assist in those alternatives.

“If we are to regain our equilibrium as a society, if we are to rescue our children from a downward spiral of violence, then we must recover our founding ideals,” said Pastor Rod Parsley. “We must resensitize ourselves to the dignity, integrity and sanctity of life by upholding it at every opportunity and in every situation. People matter.”

The U.S. Supreme Court decision in April upholding a federal ban on ghastly partial-birth abortions has invigorated people who love and revere the sanctity of human life. In addition to the Informed Choice Act pending in Congress, a variety of state legislation seeks to include ultrasounds as a prerequisite before a mother could kill her developing offspring.

South Carolina, which is the only state in the nation to recognize a fetus as a person, also could become the only state to require a woman to view an ultrasound before getting an abortion. Several other states are considering laws that would make ultrasounds available but would not make looking at them mandatory.

Of course, as much as the partial-birth ruling has motivated Bible-believing Christians, it has provoked abortion proponents. So it was no surprise that Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., wasted no time in reintroducing the Freedom of Choice Act, a measure to put a woman’s right to have an abortion in federal law.

In order to protect and preserve any rights, courageous leaders – in the press, in medicine, in law, in politics and in the church – have always recognized that they had to protect the fundamental rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Contemporary Christians can do no less.

Click here to ask Congress to pass the Informed Choice Act.


Posted in Anti-Abortion, Center for Moral Clarity, Children, CMC, Family Matters, murder, Partial Birth Abortion, pro-life, Recent News & Events, Rod Parsley, Young Ladies/Teens | Leave a Comment »

Will the Justices Defend Free Speech?

Posted by thelamp on June 18, 2007

A decision in two historical cases, FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Life and McCain v. Wisconsin Right to Life, is expected to be handed down any day as the U. S. Supreme Court approaches the end of its term, which concludes June 30. The central question in these cases – which have been consolidated for one ruling – is whether organizations like Wisconsin Right to Life can air legitimate grassroots lobbying ads during the blackout periods created by the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law.

In 2004, the Wisconsin Right to Life organization ran a television spot encouraging residents to prevent anticipated filibusters of President George W. Bush’s federal judicial nominees by calling Wisconsin U.S. Senators Russell Feingold and Herb Kohl, both Democrats. Timing of the political advertisements raised eyebrows at the Federal Election Commission (FEC) because Feingold was up for re-election at the time. So the FEC banned the right-to-life group’s ads in the weeks leading up to the November election.

The McCain-Feingold Act, named after the two senators who sponsored the legislation, regulates contributions to federal candidates in an effort to control the influence of special-interest groups on elections. The act is enforced by the FEC. Specifically, the law prohibits unions and corporations from using corporate money to pay for advocacy advertisements targeted at a specific candidate within the designated blackout period 30 days prior to a primary election and 60 days before a general election.

In response to the ad ban, Wisconsin Right to Life sued the FEC, arguing that the ban violated the First Amendment by regulating campaign speech. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled in favor of Wisconsin Right to Life in December 2006, stating that it is unconstitutional to prohibit the airing of such ads. The Federal Election Commission and Sen. John McCain, along with other members of Congress, appealed to the U. S. Supreme Court, which heard oral arguments on the cases April 25, 2007.

Here’s an indication of how Americans feel about restrictions on their free speech: A broad coalition of groups representing a wide spectrum of political ideologies filed briefs supporting Wisconsin Right to Life.

The Center for Moral Clarity concurs that the McCain-Feingold law’s “electioneering communication” prohibition should not be applied to grassroots lobbying. Such a limitation stifles citizens’ constitutional right to petition the government. The right to communicate with elected officials should not be suspended during election season.

The nine justices on the nation’s highest court have an opportunity to uphold the First Amendment, which gives citizen organizations a right to participate in self-government by asking other citizens to petition their members of Congress regarding upcoming legislative action. Christian activists are praying that they will do so.


Posted in Anti-Christian attitudes, Center for Moral Clarity, CMC, Equal Rights, Freedom of Religion, pro-life, Recent News & Events, right to life, Rod Parsley, supreme court | Leave a Comment »

Give Them Some Skin

Posted by thelamp on June 18, 2007

A high-five is in order for ethical scientists who continue to identify ways of advancing stem-cell research without destroying human embryos. The latest breakthrough was announced last week – ironically, on the same day that Congress voted to increase taxpayers’ funding for experiments on embryonic stem cells. Hold that thought!

There’s no reason to destroy any more human embryos in the quest to find cures that will save or improve lives. Scientists in Japan and the United States have now found a way to reprogram skin cells back to an embryonic state.

Although the experiments have involved only mice so far, this discovery could end the controversy that has caused Christians consternation over biomedical research for nearly a decade. In 1998, scientists first discovered how to generate human embryonic stem cells from embryos discarded by fertility clinics. Immediately, men and women who respect the sanctity of all human life objected to callously ending it in a laboratory petri dish.

Opposition to embryonic stem-cell research – mounted primarily by Christian activists – has served as a catalyst to the search for alternatives. If skin cells can mimic embryonic stem cells and perform the same function, there would be no need to continue down the dangerous, destructive path now tempting medical pioneers.

This development should sway people critical of President Bush’s promise to veto the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, which Congress has sent to the White House for the president’s signature.

People who don’t place value on the developmental stage of life that occurs before birth have argued that protecting embryos from scientific experimentation is tantamount to denying life-saving therapy to the sick and dying. Yet, even the most passionate voices in the scientific community acknowledge that human embryonic stem-cell research is a long way from producing any practical therapies.


Posted in Center for Moral Clarity, CMC, Embryonic Stem Cell, Food/Health Related, human embryonic, medical research, Recent News & Events, research, Rod Parsley, Science, Stem cell debate, stem-cell research | Leave a Comment »