19-Year-Old College Girl From MP Slices Her Tongue As Offering To Goddess Kali So That Her Wishes Come True
By The Logical Indian
Slices her tongue

Faith and superstition are two very different ideas. Faith allows an individual to flourish; faith in oneself, one’s family and friends, in humanity, and a supreme being offer strength. Then there is superstition. Superstition has been holding large sections of Indians back, either due to restrictions imposed upon themselves or due to those, clamped upon them by the ‘higher-ups’ of society.

 

A sad example of extreme superstition manifested in 19-year-old Aarti Dubey, a student at TRS College, Madhya Pradesh, who sliced her tongue with a blade as an offering to the goddess, Kali, after having apparently dreamt of the deity asking for the sacrifice in exchange for granting her wishes. The incident occurred at a Kali temple in Reeva, Madhya Pradesh.

370CA80E00000578-3732312-Although_it_is_not_unheard_of_for_devotees_to_offer_body_parts_t-a-4_1470869111986During the prayer, Aarti sliced her tongue off and offered it to the goddess, falling unconscious after having done so. Not only did none of the bystanders try to stop her, but after she lost consciousness, rather than taking her to a hospital, they covered her with a scarf and stood around praying for her.

When she finally regained her consciousness after five hours, it was hailed as a miracle. The news spread and doctors reached the temple to provide first aid to the girl. Her brother Sachin told Mail Online, “Aarti had confided me about the dream and told me that she was going to offer her tongue to the deity. But it never occurred to me that she was serious about it. I thought she was just kidding. I have heard about incidents of illiterate and superstitious people offering their body parts to appease the gods. I never thought that my own college-going sister could be so superstitious.”

370CA7F600000578-3732312-Aarti_fainted_immediately_after_cutting_off_her_tongue_and_was_c-a-3_1470869104821


The Logical Indian hopes Aarti’s injury recovers soon. To have faith in God, or to not do so, is an individual choice, one can choose whichever path is more believable. But superstition has never brought anyone any good. Rather than inflicting harm upon yourself, and in the process, on those who love you, work hard. Work hard, and fight for the life you desire. Make your own wishes come true. Self-harm has never done anyone any good. Let us take the time to introspect, and try to eliminate such superstitions from our society.


Yishai Schlissel 2d528

In Jerusalem less than a year ago, an ultra-Orthodox Jew named Yishai Schlissel, who had already publicly declared his loathing of homosexuals, wildly assaulted participants in a Gay Pride parade with a long kitchen knife. Before police could stop him, Schlissel had stabbed six of the “blasphemous” marchers, one of whom – a sixteen-year-old girl – later died from her wounds.

Schlissel claimed he was acting on behalf of the Torah – which forbids homosexual intercourse – but an Internet poll conducted by the ultra-Orthodox Kikar Shabbat website found that only 13% of respondents believed ultra-Orthodox Jews owed anyone an apology for the attacks, even though the community’s leaders had long condemned gays as criminals, or worse.

Speaking for the majority, Chaim Brizel – “the sexton of a Jerusalem synagogue,” who referred to the event Schlissel ravaged as the “Abomination Parade” – was almost contemptuous at the idea of remorse: “Religion should not have to apologize that crazy individuals exploit it for bad purposes…. All the talk about this in the media is a case of incitement against the ultra-Orthodox sector.” The Israeli ultra-Orthodox party Yahadut HaTorah did not even issue a public statement condemning Schissel’s deadly violence, “because a response could be misinterpreted to mean that we assume a degree of responsibility, when we assume no responsibility at all…. As representatives of our public, we will not respond to every criminal act, especially not an act committed by a single insane individual.”

So, when a Muslim security guard with a history of erratic threats opened fire earlier this month in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, killing 49 people (before he himself was shot dead by police), members of the Orthodox Jewish community were quick to distinguish the killer’s actions from his religion – right?

Wrong.

Ari Fuld, a religious Zionist and assistant director of Standing Together, an organization “that supports IDF soldiers,” wasted no time publicly blaming Islam for the Orlando killings. Barely a day after the mass shooting, Fuld insisted on the website of the Orthodox Jewish Press that what happened in Orlando was “a radical Islamic terrorist attack”; he even condemned President Barack Obama for not identifying the crime as “Islamist,” and complained that “the vocal majority” of Muslims were not condemning the attack. (They were, but you’d never know it from Fuld’s column.) The President, he fumed, was part of “the enlightened ‘libertard’ culture that is running around protecting those who want you dead!”

Seconding Fuld in Jewish media was Martin Oliner, the Orthodox Jewish mayor of Lawrence, New York. How a Long Island mayor became an overnight expert on the motivation of a dead Florida Muslim is more than I know, but Oliner minced no words to the Israeli newspaper Arutz Sheva. The Orlando massacre could only have arisen from “a culture of Islamic radicalism” whose enemy was “the Judeo-Christian West,” said Oliner. “Even if it’s not ISIS,” he explained, “the idea that someone would kill 50 people in a terrorist attack, this probably has to do with Islamic terrorism.”

Please don’t ask me to define the word “libertard,” or to explain the arithmetic that automatically renders 50 victims the work of a Muslim. I’m more concerned with a different question.

Where are the Orthodox rabbis?

Where are the Orthodox leaders who screamed “incitement” when their critics pointed up the connection between rabbinic fulminations against gays and Yishai Schlissel’s deadly attack – why aren’t they denouncing the far more blatant incitement by Donald Trump against Muslims, supported by public statements from their own coreligionists, in the wake of the Orlando shootings?

Where are the rabbis who told us – as most did, though there were creditable exceptions – that no religion is responsible for its exploitation by a dangerously unbalanced individual? Back then they washed their hands of Yishai Schlissel with such words; when will they apply the same logic to a Muslim homophobe, rejecting the guilt-by-association fantasy promoted by the likes of Fuld and Oliner?

And finally, where are the rabbis’ voices against the horrifying revenge demanded by Fuld, who seeks a mass expulsion of Muslims, or Oliner, who in response to a mass murder calls for – mass murder?

Here are the Lawrence mayor’s exact words: “When you have a disease, you have to take the proper medicine, and a strong dose of it…. The US needs to bring the world together in a coalition to actively wipe out ISIS.”

So if Oliner has his way, the U.S. will answer one violent attack in Orlando by intensifying a bombing campaign that has probably killed hundreds of Syrian civilians already – one that will inevitably add to the number of people in the Middle East angry enough at Americans to consider shooting some of them.

Does the Orthodox rabbinate also embrace such brutal and dangerous militarism? I would like to say no, but within days of the Orlando tragedy Binyamin Rose, writing in the June 15 issue of the influential Orthodox weekly Mishpacha, had actually upped the ante. According to Rose, the Orlando attack was nothing less than a “clash of civilizations” that called for the “the use of overwhelming military force” to counter “the jihadists who have seized control of much of the Muslim world.” Hear that? – “much of the Muslim world.” Collectively, the Fuld/Oliner/Mishpacha approach amounts to carte blanche for a war of annihilation against a vast array of people who – one would think – have already suffered more than enough.

To me, as an Orthodox Jew, the right course seems painfully self-evident. We need to speak out, clearly and forcefully, against all hate speech leveled at gays. And we need to be equally clear in our defense of Muslims, the only population in the U.S. facing more popular demonization than gays are.

If we don’t, we will be aligning ourselves with the forces of hate that, in today’s combustible circumstances, could easily consume much more than an Orlando nightclub – in Damascus, in Gaza, in Nablus, just to start with. And if Jewish leadership isn’t awake to this basic fact, so much the worse for all of us.

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WRITER


Interview with French extremism researcher Olivier Roy

″Radicalisation is not the result of failed integration″

After the attacks in Brussels, Olivier Roy cautions against rashly linking Islam with terrorism. In interview with Michaela Wiegel, the Islam researcher explains the real problem with jihadism

Mr. Roy, do you see a connection between terrorism and failed integration in European immigration societies?

Olivier Roy: I don’t think that Islamic radicalisation is the result of a failure to integrate. That’s only a pseudo-problem. Many of the young people who take up the banner of jihad are well integrated. They speak French, English and German. Islamic State (IS) has established a French-speaking battalion precisely because the young French and Belgians hardly speak any Arabic. The problem is not a lack of cultural integration. Even as they break with their society, the European jihadists remain dedicated to a very Western model. It is nihilistic, which is not at all in accordance with Islamic tradition. They have in many cases developed a fascination with the aesthetics of violence they know from movies and videos. In this sense, they are more like the students who ran amok in Columbine High School or the mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik.

So immigration and jihadism have nothing to do with each other?

Roy: For me, the high percentage of converts is a very interesting indicator. Nowhere else in Muslim culture is there another organisation like the IS with its 25 percent converts. So cultural explanations alone are not enough to establish what makes IS so attractive. What′s more, young people without an immigrant heritage are also drawn to the idea of jihad.

How then do you explain the terrorists′ invocation of Islam?

Roy: I am not denying that there is a religious dimension. It is important, because it means the jihadists can reinterpret their nihilism as a promise of paradise. Their suicide becomes a guarantee for eternal life. I only want to emphasise that these young people do not come from the Muslim community. Most of them have no religious education and have rarely visited a mosque. Nearly all were previously petty criminals. They would drink alcohol and take drugs.

Symbolic image of jihadists (photo: Colourbox/krbfss)

Fascinated by the aesthetics of violence: ” Even as they break with their society, the European jihadists remain dedicated to a very Western model. It is nihilistic, which is not at all in accordance with Islamic tradition. They have in many cases developed a fascination with the aesthetics of violence they know from movies and videos. In this sense, they are more like the students who ran amok in Columbine High School or the mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik”, asserts Roy

 

What role is played by Europe‘s colonial past?

Roy: The left wing’s post-colonial vision is inadequate. In my opinion, Islamist radicalisation can neither be attributed to current foreign policy nor to colonial crimes. These young radicals never talk about the war in Algeria, even if that is where their grandfathers came from. They usually don’t even know anything about it.

Why do so many siblings commit to jihad?

Roy: These are young people who want to make a radical break with their parents’ generation. Their parents have not inculcated them with Islamic culture. By going radical, they view themselves as better Muslims than their parents. Parents in Europe condemn their children for joining the jihad, unlike Palestinian parents, who usually approve of the violent acts perpetrated by their offspring. European parents say: I don’t understand what motivates my daughter or my son. A new conflict between generations is being fought out here. This also explains why it is so often siblings, brothers in most cases, who break away together from their parents. The IS fighters are members of the same generation, siblings or childhood friends.

So, in your view, the terrorists are the result of a particularly vehement generational conflict?

Roy: Most jihadists are “born again”; with radical Islam, they get a new lease of life. That’s why there are so few jihadists who are part of the first generation of immigrants. That generation still grew up in the traditional Islamic faith. It was not until the second generation of immigrants that a break with the past occurred, because the passing down of religious beliefs stopped working. Most terrorists belong to the second generation of immigrants.

Act of collective mourning led by Belgian Prime Minister Geert Bourgeois in Brussels following the attacks (photo: picture-alliance/dap/A. Belot)

Grief and sorrow following the terror attacks in Brussels: 32 people died during the suicide bombings carried out by Islamist terrorists last Tuesday, while 100 of the injured still remain in hospital

So you agree with Prime Minister Manuel Valls, who is against holding a debate on the breeding ground for terrorism?

Roy: No, on the contrary: I want to contribute to the debate on the breeding ground for terrorism. Valls is currently courting populism; he has moved away from the left and become more authoritarian and anti-intellectual. The breeding ground for terrorism has to be researched. To my surprise, I find myself increasingly working with psychologists and psychoanalysts. Risk-taking behaviour among young people has soared, accompanied by a fascination with suicide and violence. We have to devote more attention to this dimension.

Do you think this is a common phenomenon among young people?

Roy: Yes. In Italy, for example, two young people just murdered one of their peer group. When apprehended, the only justification they could give for their act was that they wanted to experience what it feels like to kill. The press has called them crazy. But if the young people had screamed “Allahu Akbar” before the deed, they would be perceived as terrorists.

Your compatriot the Islam researcher Gilles Kepel accuses you of downplaying the Islamic dimension of terrorism.

Roy: The fact that he’s upset is a good sign – it means he is trying to come to terms with my theses. He doesn’t like me pointing out the psychological dimension. In my opinion, though, we urgently need to take a multidisciplinary approach when tackling the phenomenon of Islamist radicalisation.

 

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Interview by Michaela Wiegel

© Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 2016

Translated from the German by Jennifer Taylor


A Christian Extremist Shot a Trans Woman In the Face, but Indiana Doesn’t Call That a Hate Crime

Last week, a Christian extremist shot a transgender woman in the face at her place of work — and because it happened in Indiana, it’s not considered a hate crime.

Crystal Cash, 55, was shot in the face while working at the cosmetics business she runs in Evansville, Indiana. Cash is currently unable to speak, but through writing was able to help identify her attacker as Gerald Duane Lewis. Lewis also yelled an anti-gay slur at Cash before shooting her.

CrystalCashImageViolence against transgender women is an epidemic, and in incidents like this, it’s obvious that anti-LGBT bias is at play. Still, the police investigation of the incident has been murky, which is likely related to the fact that Cash is a trans woman and that there are no hate crimes laws on the books to protect against bias-based violence in Indiana:

The case has been complicated by the police — who have implied that Cash is a prostitute — and by whether her assailant, identified as Gerald Duane Lewis (AKA Gadiell Ben Israel), belongs to an organization identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as a hate group.

The SPLC identifies Lewis/Israel’s church as violently anti-Semitic and anti-LGBT. The Israel United in Christ Church, on its Tumblr page, denounces interracial marriage as a sin and an abomination, and also commands its followers not to vote. In recent posts, it commented upon a recent house fire that killed seven children that it was a lesson to be learned about “defiling the sabbath.” The organization posted a note on its website denying that Lewis was a current member of the group.

Transgender women are often mistreated in the criminal justice system, whether they are being accused of a crime or have been victimized. They are frequently assumed to be sex workers and treated poorly, or their gender identities are not recognized. Both of these things happened to Cash:

When the Evansville Courier-Press reported on the arrest, it paraphrased the police report:

“Investigators noted in the arrest affidavit that Cash operates a known massage parlor in one of the spaces in the building where the shooting happened. Cash is a frequent poster on Backpage.com, an adult services website that police have expressed concern about in the past. […]

Johnny Dickens, Cash’s brother, says that his sister has been in a “committed relationship for twenty years.” He alleges that police are trying to portray his sister as a prostitute rather than as a transgender businesswoman who was targeted by a Christian extremist.

According to Courier news reports, there was initial confusion after the events as police reported that a “man” had been shot. Cash was able to describe the suspect in writing, whom she said was wearing an “Israeli-Christian” tee shirt. Lewis/Israel is being held on $5 million bond/$500,000 cash for attempted murder, robbery, and carrying a handgun without a permit.

This is where it would be helpful for the police to publicly acknowledge that Cash’s attacker committed a hate crime. Hate crimes don’t just target a person, but an entire class of people. They’re meant to intimidate, like small-scale terrorist attacks that send a threatening message to an entire community.

Hate crimes legislation, therefore, recognizes the multifaceted ways an act of violence can affect an entire community, and helps protect other members of that community who may be at risk. President Barack Obama even prioritized expanding hate crimes legislation toward the beginning of his presidency.

Despite all this information, police are not charging Lewis with a hate crime because Indiana is one of only five states in the country that do not have hate crimes protections in place. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence — who might just be our next Vice President — is a major opponent of hate crimes legislation:

“The president has used his position as commander in chief to advance a radical social agenda, when he should have used it to advance legislation that would unequivocally support our troops,” said [then-U.S. Rep.] Mike Pence, R-Ind., chairman of the House Republican Conference.

Pence also argued that the law could be used to curb free speech rights, such as with religions that consider homosexuality a sin.

Protecting people who are at risk has been a federal concern for at least the last seven years, but in states like Indiana, efforts to implement hate crimes laws are continually thwarted. This horrifying event could be a snapshot of the “values” that would govern a Mike Pence vice presidency: no recognition of populations that are routinely targeted, and no justice for those who experience such violence. Here’s hoping for a speedy recovery for Cash, and a speedy demise for the Trump/Pence campaign.

(via Raw Story. Image via 14News)

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Church of England Synod member: Gay Christians are ‘children of the devil’

by Nick Duffy

Christian Concern want LGBT rights rolled back

Christian Concern want LGBT rights rolled back

 

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As the Church of England holds its ‘shared conversations’ on the future of LGBT rights within the church, one Synod member has called for ‘Satanic’ gay priests to be expelled.

The Church this month sought to tackle a rift on teachings on homosexuality at a General Synod meeting at York University.

The process follows a years-long impasse on issues that equal marriage legislation brought to a head, including a hastily-adopted ban on gay priests getting married

Though discussions were largely progressive, anti-LGBT evangelical group Christian Concern took the opportunity to urge the Church to expel all gay priests.

Andrea Williams said in a statement: “The attempt on the church’s part to pretend that same-sex relations and LGBTI arguments have any biblically-rooted validity or might be the result of the ‘leading of the Spirit’ is not only farcical, it is disgraceful and arguably blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.”

She bemoaned: “A homosexual priest in a relationship for nineteen years and in a civil partnership addressed the whole of synod from the platform. Shouldn’t he be lovingly disciplined and removed from his position?”

“Another senior LGBTI activist with a prominent and official position on synod, who has been in a homosexual relationship for many years, dared ‘the conservatives’ to tell him to his face ‘you are not a Christian’.

“One thing that he can be told very clearly is that he is not living in obedience to Jesus and His commands. Shouldn’t he be lovingly disciplined and removed from his position?”

She cited a Biblical passage that says: “Whoever practises righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning.

“No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practise righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.”

Christian Concern added: “The habitual practice and promotion of sin in the life of the church is surely a mark of the same kind of heresy that the apostle John was addressing in this letter.

“It is time for the bishops in the church to make a clear stand with Christ and with Scripture, or a godly separation is the only course that would not grieve the Holy Spirit, for it is He who the revisionists are truly offended by.

“One vocal group in synod call what is sin, holiness. Of course, we can and we must relate to one another in our shared humanity, but we can’t stay together if the church wants to bless what is not holy.

“The fundamental question at stake is whether the church belongs to Jesus Christ or whether it belongs to the revisionists who would reshape it in the image of today’s cultural moods.

“If the church is to flourish and be a true blessing to society, she must repent and rededicate herself to Jesus Christ, trusting his teaching, example and the rescue from sin that he freely offers.”

 

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Inside extremist Christian sect the Exclusive Brethren – who are accused of covering up child sex abuse and ‘making secret donations to the Liberal Party

  • Exclusive Brethren is a Protestant sect with 15,000 Australian members
  • Reports have surfaced they covered up child sex abuse in regional NSW 
  • Said to pressure their young female out of exposing the abuse
  • Group also made $67,000 donations to the Liberal Party in December 2010

 

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Harrowing revelations of child abuse have come to light about the Australian branch of an extremist Christian sect known as the Exclusive Brethren.

Sydney Morning Herald report has told of the sordid inner workings of the group, who are believed to cover up cases of child sex abuse as well as make secret donations to the Liberal Party.

An unnamed young victim from regional NSW claimed she revealed to her mother she was being molested by a high-ranking church member before being pressured out of exposing the abuse.

A Christian sect known as the Exclusive Brethren is said to be covering up cases of child sex abuse in Australia

A Christian sect known as the Exclusive Brethren is said to be covering up cases of child sex abuse in Australia

The victim’s mother took the girl to the house of Lindsay Jensen – who was allegedly abusing her – in mid-2002.

After a thorough interrogation from Mr Jensen she signed a note saying she had lied about the abuse.

‘I have always thought of the relationship between Lindsay and I as a father/daughter relationship…And I was glad for it because I needed some sort of father,’ she wrote in the note.

‘The things that I said that happened, I don’t believe they happened at all.’

The girl’s sister later claimed she too was abused by Mr Jensen, before being subjected to the same silencing tactics.

A recent study from UK psychologist Jill Mytton found 27 per cent of 264 former members reported being sexually abused as children.

An unnamed young victim from regional NSW was said to be pressured her out of exposing the abuse she suffered from highly-ranking members of the sect

An unnamed young victim from regional NSW was said to be pressured her out of exposing the abuse she suffered from highly-ranking members of the sect

Also recently coming to light are secret donations the group has made to the Liberal Party, reports Sydney Morning Herald.

Dozens of members of the group donated more than $67,000 to the Liberal Party in December 2010.

The donations were exposed in documents at the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption during an investigation into the Liberal Party’s funding.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull insisted on Saturday he had ‘no complaints’ about the Exclusive Brethren, after the group’s donations were made public.

Mr Turnbull told reporters in Melbourne on Saturday religious groups were entitled to donate, while insisting the coalition was being ‘massively outspent’ by Labor.

The Exclusive Brethren was thrust into the spotlight in 2006 after they dedicated $370,461 to contribute to the 2004 election on behalf of John Howard, whom they were closely aligned with.

The sect, who have since renamed themselves the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church, is a Protestant sect of 40,000 worldwide members and 15,000 in Australia

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Fictionally ‘preventing Sharia Law’ by actually imposing their own brand of Christo-fascist Sharia Law.
christian fascism_01-christian-fascism-e1281825747299
The Republican platform hates gays, puts women back in the kitchen, and insists on religious law
 NEW ORLEANS, LA - JUNE 18:  Family Research Council president Tony Perkins speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 18, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The 2011 Republican Leadership Conference features keynote addresses from most of the major republican candidates for president as well as numerous republican leaders from across the country.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  Tony Perkins, author of much of the 2016 Republican platform

Over the last week, as the Republican platform committee added planks to their ever growing platform a pattern established itself. Again and again, libertarian forces in the party raised objections to the parts of the platform that drove Republicans ever deeper into social extremism. Again and again, the libertarians lost.

Meanwhile, every time extremists on the right put forward a new idea, whether it was Bundy-esque demands on federal land or gratuitous attacks on President Obama, the plank was accepted. The result is a document that’s far to the right of the 2012 platform, decades out of sync with social reality, and enormously intolerant.

Republicans moved on Tuesday toward adopting a staunchly conservative platform that takes a strict, traditionalist view of the family and child rearing, bars military women from combat, describes coal as a “clean” energy source and declares pornography a “public health crisis.”

And while Republicans continue to warn about the non-existent threat of Sharia Law, their platform insists that religious law isn’t an option—it’s required.

The platform demands that lawmakers use religion as a guide when legislating, stipulating “that man-made law must be consistent with God-given, natural rights.”

It also encourages the teaching of the Bible in public schools because, the amendment said, a good understanding of its contents is “indispensable for the development of an educated citizenry.”

Who interprets God-given, natural rights? Conservatives, of course, and their interpretation presents an incredibly strict, incredibly narrow, and quite detailed picture of what it takes to be a Real American.

The Republicans: Preventing Sharia Law, by imposing Sharia Law.

Several of the issues added were in areas where the Supreme Court has already given a decision, such as the legality of gay marriage or the use of “religious freedom” laws to permit discrimination against gays. That they had lost on these issues only hardened the Republican positions.

Amendments were proposed that toned down the language on homosexuality. They failed. Amendments were proposed that recognized how LGBT people had been the targets of hate crimes. They failed. In fact, every proposal that tried to offer any so of inclusion was dismissed as “identity politics.”

Meanwhile …

But nearly every provision that expressed disapproval of homosexuality, same-sex marriage or transgender rights passed. The platform calls for overturning the Supreme Court marriage decision with a constitutional amendment and makes references to appointing judges “who respect traditional family values.”

Restricting bathroom access for transgender Americans? It’s in the Republican platform. “Conversion therapy” for parents who want to “cure” their gay children? It’s in the Republican platform. The idea that only a man and a woman together in marriage can properly raise children? It’s in the Republican platform. The Republican platform even has a statement against “cohabitation,” a fight that was lost some time while the Smothers Brothers was in its initial run.

Oh, and when it comes to immigration, Trump’s wall is now an official part of the platform. So is a statement that there should be no limit on the size of magazines for weapons.

The Republicans didn’t just take everything from the already hard-right 2012 platform. They took it all, and made it worse.

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