Let us pray and grieve with the families of the three people killed in Charlottesville. Let’s honor the brave, honorable service of State Police, Lt. H Jay Cullen and Trooper Berke M.M. Bates. Rest in peace.
The Virginia First Foundation condemns any and every person or group that advocates or commits political violence. All – Left and Right. Frankly, that’s easy to do.
Also, VFF chastises any elected official or political party person who doesn’t condemn both sides in Charlottesville’s riot.
Furthermore, VFF condemns the identity politics of the Left and Right, Democrats and Republicans and all others. It’s fundamentally wrong and ultimately dangerous to pursue the politics of white, black, Hispanic or Asian identity, gender, sexual behavior, or any other perpetual victim group or “protected classes of persons.” Dividing people into groups gives rise to groups that threaten the body – the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Specifically, more white identity in the future will not go well. The morally ascendant idea since the Civil Rights Movement has been for racial integration. It’s been the higher, better right thing for Whites to not think and vote as Whites – separate from other citizens. Yet, that’s what more identity division will beget.
The overwhelming majority of Whites in Virginia, who were raised in Southern Culture, had a transformation of the heart on race. The Christian message of Dr. Martin Luther King struck the Christian chords of Southerners to change their heart. Most believing Whites assumed a Christian identity first and foremost. Consequently, VFF repudiates, rejects, reviles White identity - ideas and politics.
And, VFF makes a key distinction that rejects White identity politics and supports Confederate heritage as part of Virginia history politics. Current White identity, KKK, alt.right, NAZI, white tribalism, etc. needs to be kept very distant from Confederate history and heritage advocacy. All of the Left and extreme Right reject that difference – and want to lump Confederates, NAZIs and the Klan together as the Right. Wrong. The NAZIs and Klan with their traveling companions are so extreme that they are actually big government, Anti-Christian, Anti-Israel Leftists.
VFF calls on the City of Charlottesville to restore the Rule of Law. When a despicable group exercises their right of free speech, do a better job of keeping opposing despicables from the other side far away. Make more arrests, sooner.
And, City of Charlottesville stop culturally cleansing your city of all things Confederate. Let history be. Let it live and learn from it.
VFF calls on all Virginians to not let their exercised emotions push for limits on speech – even so-called hate speech, assembly or the right to petition government. Don’t limit freedom because of out-of-state extremists.
If Virginians must have identity politics – go with Virginian American Christian. Lead in liberty. Respect individual freedoms. Love one another.
The divisive, Sanctuary City mayor of Richmond, Levar Stoney is appointing a commission to look at adding “diversity” and context to the Confederate soldier statues on Monument Avenue. Mayor Stoney reportedly said, "It’s our time; it’s our responsibility to set the historical record straight on Monument Avenue’s confederate statuary.” "Equal parts myth and deception, they were the ‘alternative facts’ of their time – a false narrative etched in stone and bronze more than 100 years ago – not only to lionize the architects and defenders of slavery – but to perpetuate the tyranny and terror of Jim Crow and reassert a new era of white supremacy." Now, that’s creative writing.
The architects of slavery date at least to the end of the last Ice Age. No monuments to them in Richmond.
The defenders of slavery?
That would be the U.S. Supreme Court in the Dred Scott Case. No monuments to them, either. The statues on Monument Avenue weren’t about Jim Crow. In those days, the Democrats who got elected with racially divisive politics wouldn’t hesitate to build a statue to Simon Legree whipping a slave – if they intended to assert white supremacy. Read their speeches.
The Virginia First Foundation understands the commission is about racial politics playing well enough to keep Democrats elected. We doubt the commission will have any diversity of ideas or context beyond the accepted Liberal Left PC alternative facts of this bizarre time. VFF knows “diversity” is dog whistle, Liberal Left code for “other than White males.” If such diversity is needed for Monument Avenue, we genuinely propose adding greater context to statues to heroes of Virginia’s most costly war ever. Add these statues:
- Jewish Confederate Cabinet member - Judah Benjamin. The South produced the first Jewish Senator for the US. The Confederacy had the only Jewish Cabinet member.
- Cherokee Indian Confederate General - BG Stand Watie. There were no general officers in the Union Army. A great plaque would be the actual Indian tribes’ articles of secession from the Union.
- Confederate Captain Sally Louisa Tompkins – Commissioned in the CSA. There were no commissioned women officers in the Union Army, just contract officers. CPT Tompkins saved many lives and returned many to fight again when she ran Robertson Hospital.
- Confederate Black Soldiers - Show a symbol of the 45 black men, armed to the teeth, who fought in the Escort Company to the Confederate Nathan Bedford Forrest (Yes, that Forrest) as slaves and then continued fighting for 18 months as free men.
- Confederate Hispanic Soldiers - Choose an icon, there are so many choices, from the Hispanic men and officers in Confederate Texas regiments.
And, finally, a sort of summary statue could be to “All the Victims of Yankee War Crimes 1861-65”.
Maybe add “and depredations of Occupation 1866-1876”. (Virginia was readmitted to the Union in 1870 – which always begs the question, “If States can NOT secede legally, then why must they be readmitted?”).
The list of War Crimes could include the general burning of the Shenandoah Valley for the hunger-related deaths it caused, or specifically name Mosby’s murdered men. It could mention the rapes of liberated slave women and state specific homes looted, on and on.
Let’s tell all the history, not PC cartoon memes, for greater context. Yes, War is Hell (Thank you,General Sherman), so Virginia’s war monuments should speak of courage, duty and honor - not culture war.
Politics Is But One Path, But an Important One
Congratulations to the 2017 winners of the Democrat and Republican primaries in Virginia. Less one in five Virginia voters exercised their right to vote. Yet, in November more than one in five will likely complain about the choices they have on the ballots. Too bad. Democratic institutions get what they deserve in what they vote.
The Virginia First Foundation knows that politics is only one path of about 10 that change a culture. But, politics is very important because it leads to the power that effects many other paths to change – education, law and justice, economics, media, etc. VFF’s mission is to help educate Virginians on the choices they have and the consequences of their votes.
Ignorance, apathy or anger that excludes Virginians from participating in the simplest exercise in freedom – showing up to vote – is bad for Virginia.
VFF encourages Virginians to get involved in every elective race – for public or party office and at every level of office – city, county, Commonwealth or Federal.
We’ve had state-wide elections determined by less than 100 votes. Your vote always matters.
VFF can come to any community and teach how to get involved in city and county elections. We’ll show why those elections matter. We’ll give you every insight, based on proven experience, on how to make a difference in your community. For Virginia.
Invite us to your community, group, or contact us by yourself.
Last weekend there were 30 marches across the country against Sharia Law. That’s a good start. Public demonstrations are a lot of time and effort, but there important to inform politicians in power. Using our Right to peacefully assemble and petition for a governmental redress of grievances is needed to tell the pols how important some issues are. Stopping Sharia Law and keeping our Rule of Law is about as important an issue as Virginians will ever face.
Anyone who supports Sharia Law doesn’t know what it is and how it is applied around the world or they don’t know our Rule of Law. Our Rule of Law provides for laws and regulations at the local, state and federal levels that apply to all Americans. No exceptions. No special privileges – at least there aren’t supposed to be any. No second set of laws that only apply to some people.
There’s no separation of mosque and state in Islam. There’s been a separation of church and state in America since Thomas Jefferson’s Statute on Religious Freedom lead all the states - ended the official church in Virginia in 1787. Virginians need to keep it that way.
The Virginia First Foundation is ready, willing and able to educate Virginia’s elected officials and electorate on why No to Sharia Law is Yes to the Rule of Law, Freedom and the best possible future Commonwealth of Virginia.
They want to tear down every Confederate statue and memorial. They hate so much that they hate our Virginia dead.
Does Virginia’s history – all of it – belong to all Virginians? Or, is history only applicable to identity politics – the division of Virginians into protected classes of persons, permanent victims, perpetual privileged oppressors, and other categories.
(How ironic that the long list of groups is created by the people who preach inclusion and practice division!)
Can a new Virginian, say a legal immigrant who barely speaks English, take pride in the ideas of the Founders? Or, does the glory of Virginia authorship of the Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights only go to Virginians whose ancestors were here then?
Can all Virginians celebrate the victory of the Civil Rights movement to end segregation or is that for Black Virginians only?
Think about it.
How can a Virginia descendant of slaves be proud of a Confederate monument? Easy.
- Recognize the sins of slavery and segregation are cleansed from Virginia and be thankful.
- Admire the courage, honor and fidelity of Virginians who fought to defend their home from invasion. More Virginians died fighting for Virginia than in all wars put together. Recognize what an epic event this war was for Virginia. Hope future Virginians share their fighting spirit and skill to defend our home.
- Respect the profound Christian faith of so many soldiers and leaders like Lee and Jackson. Winston Churchill wrote the Army of Northern Virginia was the most devoutly Christian army that ever marched. Teach boys to be good men like them.
- Honor the military genius of Lee and Jackson and hope it passes to future generations of Virginians.
- Acknowledge how your ancestors may have supported Virginia’s defense since 6 out 7 slaves never left their homes. Tens of thousands of Blacks served in the Confederate Army and never deserted.
- Know that Confederate veterans are American veterans under Public Law, U.S. Code and deserve equal respect.
- Love your neighbors whose ancestors fought, bled and died for Virginia as you love yourself. Live and let live. Make toleration a two-way street.
- Teach your children to never fight another civil war in Virginia. Never again.
- Make “Virginians Lives Matter” a motto to live by.
- Don’t be so sick as to hate dead people.
When you were a kid, did you have a family member or friend who would never play by the rules of a board game? Playing Monopoly they’d insist there was a reason to not pay rent, get out of jail, or whatever suited them. They’d weasel word, “Well, our family plays be these different rules.” They tried to cheat, even though the rules were clearly written out. It’s annoying and frustrating behavior for a child. It’s dangerous and threatening behavior for elected officials – as with the Governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe.
Governor McAuliffe signed Executive Order 65 to expand Medicaid, even though he doesn’t have the authority.
The Governor of Virginia is very powerful. That’s why we have a one-term only Governor in Virginia. Because such power corrupts. When a Governor makes up new powers, his corruption and abuse of power is self-evident. His disdain and disrespect for the Rule of Law is on record – and should be held to account.
In Virginia, the Governor can’t use his line item veto for specific words, but has to veto the entire line item. For example, if a bill authorized higher tolls in 3 named roads in Northern VA, the Governor can’t pick one road or two to veto the toll. He has to veto the all the tolls or none.
When, the General Assembly voted the Medicaid appropriation and said, specifically, that Medicaid couldn’t be expanded, the Governor signed an Executive Order saying he would ignore that instruction.
Except, the budget is the law in Virginia. Executive orders aren’t. When the Governor tries to overrule the law with an Executive Order, he is cheating like a petulant child flipping over the Monopoly board.
The Speaker of the House, Bill Howell, released this legal opinion, ““Whether to extend Medicaid coverage to individuals who do not fit the current statutory requirements established by Virginia law is a quintessential legislative decision. Nothing in Virginia statutory or constitutional law empowers the Governor to make that decision unilaterally, let alone to execute that decision without the requisite appropriation of funds from the General Assembly. There is simply no constitutional path for the Governor to expand Virginia’s Medicaid program without obtaining the requisite authority and appropriation of funds from the General Assembly to do so."
The Virginia First Foundation urges the General Assembly to take whatever action is necessary to stop the Governor from violating the Rule of Law.
Furthermore, the General Assembly should hold the Governor accountable with whatever is the strongest, clearest accountability they can muster.
Virginians should inform their Virginia Delegates and Senators, they want to be represented by public censure or impeachment – to restore respect for the Rule of Law in Virginia. The General Assembly failed to act when the Attorney General violated his oath to defend the Virginia Constitution. They shouldn’t be allowed by The People to fail to do their duty again.
Here's a new post from Board Member, James Bowden
The firing of FBI Director James Comey is a great illustration of what the Virginia First Foundation is about. It shows how the Rule of Law should work. And, why the Rule of Law matters.
The FBI is the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Public law, our U.S. Code, Justice Department Regulations and Presidential Executive Orders set in writing what the FBI is supposed to do. And, the limits of its authority and power. The FBI and its Director are subject to the Rule of Law.
The Rule of Law means obeying the law and working within the rules. All of them. When the law and rules are wrong, we should work to change them. But, we must follow the law or accept the consequences of civil disobedience under the law until bad laws are changed. Moreover, the laws and rules must apply to everyone equally. No matter what. Everyone must be equal before the law.
Now, go back to 2016. When the FBI discovers someone may have broken many Federal laws and regulations on protecting classified information, they have to go to their bosses in the Justice Department to get the full, legal authority to conduct an investigation which may result in arrest and trial for crimes committed. If the bosses, who are political appointees with executive authority to run the Federal government, refuse to allow the investigation – even though there is clear evidence of crime – the FBI Director has a choice. He can do as he is told to not investigate or he can quit in protest.
If the Director holds a press conference to announce there won’t be a proper investigation – and lists all the violations of the law - he broke the rules he works under. He violated the Rule of Law.
If the Director says the internal FBI investigation found criminal violations but makes up a standard of “intent” – which isn’t in the U.S. Code, he violated the Rule of Law.
If the Director holds another press conference right before the election to announce more findings from a fatally flawed, half-hearted investigation, he is usurping the role of his boss. He violated the Rule of Law.
When the law means one thing to the average government worker, but doesn’t apply to Hillary Clinton, there is no Rule of Law. The President, if he knows, and the Justice Department officials violate their oath to uphold and defend the Constitution when they don’t do their duty. The FBI Director who doesn’t quit in protest isn’t doing his duty.
The Virginia First Foundation is about creating a culture in Virginia where we support the Rule of Law overwhelmingly, passionately and with resolute conviction.
The FBI Director should have resigned in protest. When he didn’t, he should have been fired for breaking the rules in July 2016.
In Virginia our current Attorney General took an oath to uphold the Constitution of Virginia. Under the Rule of Law, it’s his job to defend our Constitution in court. When our Marriage Amendment was challenged, the Attorney General didn’t defend our Constitution as he swore on a Bible to do – because he didn’t like the Amendment. He violated the Rule of Law. The Virginia General Assembly – both parties included – should have impeached him.
VFF works for a Virginia where the Attorney General shouldn't violate the Rule of Law, and the General Assembly should hold all officials accountable to the Rule of Law
This Op/Ed was sent to the Richmond Times-Dispatch and was rejected. I guess they are not interested in posting opinion pieces about these topics.
The cancellation announcement of Bill Federer’s presentation two days before he was to speak about Islam at Grove Avenue Baptist Church in Richmond on December 2 was surprising. The event was sponsored by Virginia Christian Alliance (VCA) and Hope for Israel. Grove Avenue advertised the event on Sundays and through other media venues. VCA’s email notification said Federer’s lecture would be rescheduled at another location.
Obviously, the speaker did not renege. Grove Avenue would be used when a different date was determined. Federer lives in Virginia Beach and his travel expenses and accommodations would not create a financial burden for the hosts. VCA and Hope for Israel were hosting one of the foremost American and world historians. The expected numbers of those attending were strong. Leading up to the final days before the event, something happened to the leadership of Grove Avenue Baptist Church stopping the lecture – intimidation.
Interfaith groups in the Richmond area heard about Federer’s presentation. Several phone calls were made and emails were sent to Grove Avenue asking them to cancel the event because “Federer is a radical who does not compromise biblical absolutes or historical truths”. Coercive and intolerant pressure from those who believe we can “Coexist”, sing Kum ba yah so the world will get along, reject certain passages in the Word of God, and revise history forced Grove Avenue leadership to capitulate. Agree and you are tolerated. Disagree, and the ‘tolerant’ demand silence.
What happened to the backbone of the American pastor or the American church? The Federer lecture at Grove Avenue is not some isolated incident. Churches throughout America are kowtowing to political, multicultural bullies willing to verbally threaten and intimidate pastors. Church leadership now fears man’s threats rather than God’s directives.
Revolutionary pastors were willing to die to maintain the right to preach the uncompromised Word of God and live without governmental oversight or restraints. John Adams declared that pastors were the reason America won the war with Great Britain. Pastors were the moral megaphone in this nation…until the 1954 Johnston amendment.
Today, America’s ethical voice has been neutered by what Arnold Toynbee calls a “schism of the soul”. In his book, A Study of History, Toynbee stated that America has blended religious traditions and can no longer declare with certainty any distinction between good and evil. Isaiah 5:20 warns, “Woe unto them that call evil good and good evil; that put darkness for light and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.” Does the American church know and declare these differences?
The Federer cancellation at Grove Avenue Baptist Church is a microcosm of a greater issue. The American church continues to walk away from truth. She fails to speak truth to power and refuses to stand firm on fundamental issues.
A recent survey revealed that most Christians want biblical answers for current issues - abortion, Islam, immigration, etc. Yet a vast majority of ministers refuse to address these controversial subjects.
The colors on the U.S. election map of 2016 shifted. Some Blue Democrat states turned Red Republican. Some swing states are becoming increasingly Blue, like Virginia. While every election is unique, 2016 was a Democrat win by over 100 thousand votes. The win comes from just 8 cities and counties - the cities with a large enough black population and Northern Virginia to swing our state. The significance of the swing for the Commonwealth of Virginia is the ability of 8 cities and counties to determine the state-wide elections for the remaining 125 cities and counties. Such an imbalance of power has consequences.
The Virginia First Foundation’s interest in the divisions across Virginia is how to change the culture on both sides of the divide – so a powerful majority of Virginians believe, support and honor the Rule of Law, Constitutionally-limited government, personal and economic opportunity and freedoms based on our historical, traditional Judeo-Christian culture.
We work to promote ideas. Not identity politics. Promoting the politically correct list of protected and celebrated classes of persons – group identities – is suicidal for Virginia. Because ultimately such a division of Virginians will cause too many people to self-identify solely in their “otherness” from the pandered population. That “otherness”, if you read the hysteria from the losing side of this election, is labeled as racist, bigoted, misogynist, homophobic, Islamophobic, ignorant, Confederate and redneck, etc. And, their enemy is White. That is the problem with identity politics.
The ascending idea in identity politics since the Civil Rights struggle is racial integration. Integration as preached by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. remains the preeminent ascending idea. But the (Liberals Progressives Socialists Human Secularists Communists) Left will keep pushing identity politics, special privileges, and accusing the innocent of imaginary White Privilege until too many Virginians identify and act politically as Whites. Such a division will be a disaster for Virginia.
We want folks to think of themselves as “Virginians.” That includes all the legal immigrants who are new Virginians by choice. Our Virginia has a great heritage and awesome potential for the future if we live as connected communities of Virginians. The Virginia First Foundation promotes E Pluribus Unum, from many to one, in Virginia. Integrating every identity into Virginians - united by the Rule of Law.
Nice and tidy.