Jason Hayes

Libertarian thought, policy, religion, the environment, tech, coffee, and Tabasco – the stuff of life
This is my personal blog - the thoughts and ideas expressed here are posted on my own time and are mine and mine alone.

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Not the law of the land

“[S]hould Congress, under the pretext of executing its powers, pass laws for the accomplishment of objects not entrusted to the government, such [acts are] not the law of the land.”

–John Marshall, McCulloch v. Maryland, 1819

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Trey Gowdy on IRS scandal

Difficult to say who is better in this video – Trey Gowdy or Jay Sekulow.

This investigation MUST HAVE an independent special prosecutor appointed. The possibility of corruption and scandal here is inescapable and, if the charges of corruption are found to be true—despite the President’s confident assertion that there is “not a smidgen of corruption” in the IRS—it would be far worse than Watergate or Iran Contra.

This situation needs to be properly and fully investigated.

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On the handling of scandals

christie_scandal

No further comment necessary.

Update: Apparently I was wrong. Bernard Goldberg‘s thoughts on this are worth reading.

It’s good to know that President Obama’s most loyal followers – the so-called mainstream media – have their priorities straight.  As reported by the (conservative) Media Research Center:
“In less than 24 hours, the big three networks have devoted 17 times more coverage to a traffic scandal involving Chris Christie than they’ve allowed in the last six months to Barack Obama’s Internal Revenue Service controversy. Since the story broke on Wednesday that aides to the New Jersey governor punished a local mayor’s lack of endorsement with a massive traffic jam, ABC, CBS and NBC have responded with 34 minutes and 28 seconds of coverage. Since July 1, these same networks managed a scant two minutes and eight seconds for the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups.”
Read the full article and consider the media’s stunning hypocrisy on this issue.

I am also consistently amazed that various “isms” are considered appropriate and funny when viewed from the political left. From the ‘in’ group at MSNBC laughing at Mitt Romney’s African-American grandson, to this cartoon depicting a grossly over-inflated Chris Christie sitting on a bridge and blocking traffic. To the political left, it is all funny and open for attack because it attacks an ostensibly conservative politician.

Christie

However, a similar cartoon that targeted a physical disability, weight issues, sexual orientation, religious views, etc. of a left-wing politician would be loudly and universally condemned throughout the media as proof of the inhumanity and insensitivity of the political right.

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44 years ago today

Today and tomorrow will mark the 44th anniversary of Senator Ted Kennedy’s very active and personal role in the death of Mary Jane Kopechne. Although I haven’t posted this in a few years, I believe it is still worthwhile remembering how the senior Senator from Massachusetts did everything in his power to cover up the facts and to protect himself, after having fled the scene of the accident that he had caused, abandoning Kopechne to die a horrific and prolonged death in his overturned car.

In this post we also continue to recognize how money, power, and the family name allowed Senator Kennedy to avoid any responsibility for his actions. Any other person involved in a similar accident would have been charged with numerous crimes and would have spent several years in jail. Senator Kennedy, however, not only remained free, he continued to posses — over several decades — a level of influence and power that many can only imagine. When he passed, he was remembered as “a champion for those who had none; the soul of the Democratic Party; and the lion of the U.S. Senate.”

So we don’t forget how this revered and respected “Lion of the Senate” was able to escape culpability for his role in the death of Mary Jo Kopechne, here once again, is the text of my original post from nine years ago.

35 years ago today, Ted Kennedy’s self-absorbed and self-protective actions ensured that the life of one Mary Jo Kopechne was ended. Ted Kennedy fled the scene of an accident that he caused. and in doing so, he left that woman to drown.

Ted Kennedy was too great a coward to help her. He was more worried about his political career and his reputation, so he helped himself, ran away and tried to cover up his actions while she struggled to stay alive by breathing from the rapidly dwindling air pocket in the backseat of the car.

Anyone else would have been jailed for this crime, but thanks to the Kennedy fortune and friends in high places, Teddy not only stayed out of jail, he has been re-elected several times since then.

Teddy’s question a few years later seems especially pertinent at this time

Do we operate under a system of equal justice under law? Or is there one system for the average citizen and another for the high and mighty?

– Senator Ted Kennedy, 1973
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Trey Gowdy questioning Former IRS Commissioner Shulman

Trey Gowdy is rocking the questioning in this video.

Former IRS Commissioner Shulman demonstrates clearly that he is at the (very) best a completely incompetent moron and at worst was criminally negligent in the performance of his duties at the IRS.

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No ordinary scandal

Peggy Noonan‘s latest WSJ blog post is a blistering attack on the Obama administration’s use of the IRS as a bludgeon to intimidate, censor, and silence political opponents. It is an essential read for anyone interested in policy and politics.

The IRS scandal has two parts. The first is the obviously deliberate and targeted abuse, harassment and attempted suppression of conservative groups. The second is the auditing of the taxes of political activists. …

This is not about the usual partisan slugfest. This is about the integrity of our system of government and our ability to trust, which is to say our ability to function.

Check it out.

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Axelrod has (accidentally) sided with the Tea Party

This video is classic Chicago-style politics. Pass the buck, blame someone else, don’t look behind the curtain, just focus on the spin and everything will be fine.

Sad thing for David Axelrod is that he apparently doesn’t even realize he has just given the Libertarians and the Tea Party their winning 2014 election soundbite. Watch the video; you’ll see.

Yes, you did just hear Axelrod argue that that President Obama can’t possibly be to blame for the IRS scandal (and by logical extension – Benghazi, Fast & Furious, the Justice Department seizing two months of AP phone records, the brewing EPA scandal, etc., etc., etc.) because the government is “so vast” that it is impossible to track what happens in these diverse and sundry bureaucracies.

“So vast” were his words – e’nuf said.

But for those who might have missed the obvious … THAT”S THE WHOLE POINT!!! That’s exactly why supporters of limited government are pushing to have all of this addressed, taxes cut, the bureaucracy limited. Government has passed the point of accountability and effective, efficient, Constitutional service to “we the people.” By Axelrod’s own admission government has become a massive, gaping hole, where responsibility and accountability go to die – along with multiple trillions of our tax dollars.

When pro-big government socialists like Axelrod are openly admitting government is “so vast” that no one can know what it is doing, it really is time to cut budgets on a massive scale.

Via Chicks on the Right

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Perjury in defense of tyranny

“Those who are capable of tyranny are capable of perjury to sustain it.”
–Lysander Spooner

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A seismic shift in the burden of proof from “tinfoil behatted” to the government

I posted yesterday about the gross miscarriages of justice by the “Justice” Department, the IRS, and the State Department. (Of course, I forgot to include the even more overt criminal acts carried out by the Justice Department as part of their Fast and Furious scandal where the federal government effectively supplied thousands of firearms to drug cartels. Those firearms were then directly involved in the death of US Border Guard, Brian Terry and hundreds of Mexican citizens.)

Today we are learning that the EPA routinely played politics in their handling of fee waivers for environmental groups and politically conservative groups. The Competitive Enterprise Institute noted today that,

It’s not just the IRS that treats groups on the right differently from the rest. According to documents obtained by the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the Environmental Protection Agency is in on it too.

Public records produced by EPA in response to a lawsuit filed by CEI under the Freedom of Information Act illustrate a pattern of making it far more difficult for limited-government groups – in particular those who argue for more freedom and less EPA – to access public records. …

EPA routinely grants … fee waivers to its favored left-wing groups who demand a more intrusive and powerful EPA, but systematically denies waivers for groups on the right, according to research compiled by CEI Senior Fellow Christopher Horner, author of “The Liberal War on Transparency.”

In a review of letters granting or denying fee waivers granted at the “initial determination” stage from January 2012 to this Spring, Horner found green groups, such as the National Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility and EarthJustice, had their fees waived in 75 out of 82 cases. Meanwhile, EPA effectively or expressly denied Horner’s request for fee waivers in 14 of 15 FOIA requests over this same time.

It seems that many of the federal government bureaucracies are now infested with career employees who feel quite comfortable playing political games with citizens and taxpayers. The actions of these government employees necessarily lead reasonable people to believe that government is working hand in glove with left-wing political and environmental groups to further so-called progressive world views.

When even John Stewart is saying that the partisan, corrupt, and possibly even criminal behavior of these government employees is encouraging the very anti-government mindset that so many progressives have derided as lunatic fringe, you know that it is well past time for Congress to step in and clear up this mess.

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Trek: Into Darkness
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Indecision Political Humor The Daily Show on Facebook

Investigations, firings, fines/loss of pensions, and jail time need to become real possibilities for government employees and managers that refuse to follow the Constitution, legislation, and regulations.

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Justice Department seizes AP phone records

I don’t care who you are, who you voted for, what you believe … etc. When you start adding these reports together, it’s time for reasonable people to start asking some serious questions about what is going on in our federal government.

The IRS has admitted to targeting conservative non-profits, and now this article indicates that the IRS may have released the unapproved applications from conservative groups to Propublica, a generally left-leaning news organization. Propublica admits to having published redacted examples of those applications.

Furthermore, the Obama administration abandoned consulate staff in Benghazi and then repeatedly edited their reports and talking points about the Benghazi attack for several weeks, prompting House investigations into their actions. Those investigations are ongoing, while the Obama administration claims they are politically motivated “circus.

To top off the questionable performance of this current administration, we learned today that the Justice Department secretly collected two months of phone records for more than 20 separate Associated Press telephone lines last year.

The Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative’s top executive called a “massive and unprecedented intrusion” into how news organizations gather the news.

The records obtained by the Justice Department listed outgoing calls for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, for general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and for the main number for the AP in the House of Representatives press gallery, according to attorneys for the AP. It was not clear if the records also included incoming calls or the duration of the calls.

In all, the government seized the records for more than 20 separate telephone lines assigned to AP and its journalists in April and May of 2012. The exact number of journalists who used the phone lines during that period is unknown, but more than 100 journalists work in the offices where phone records were targeted, on a wide array of stories about government and other matters.

Of course no one should miss the sick irony of this all coming to light a short time after the President told Ohio State students that they should “reject the voices” that warn of government tyranny.

Unfortunately, you’ve grown up hearing voices that incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some separate, sinister entity that’s at the root of all our problems. Some of these same voices also do their best to gum up the works. They’ll warn that tyranny always lurking just around the corner. You should reject these voices.

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This Young Lady Gets It

Amazing that this young lady can be so well versed in basic civics and statistics when the so-called leaders of our country can’t seem to grasp even the most basic aspects of either.

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The reality is that firearms save lives

It’s honestly grotesque that Mayor Bloomberg and others of his anti-gun ilk have rushed so quickly to politicize the horrific mass murder in Aurora today.

However, it is essential that we remember that “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” Therefore, as Mayor Bloomberg et al have opened the discussion, people of reason and good conscience must respond. In that vein …

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Obama on immigration-related executive orders

In March 2011, Obama clearly stated that he could not just go around Congress on the issue of immigration-related executive orders. He took great pains to explain the roles and responsibilities of each branch of government to the people listening to this speech. But last week, he just ignored those sentiments and did the very thing he said was illegal, just 15 months ago.

So … I’m left wondering what changed over the past year?

Of course it appears that the electoral ‘love’ he might have gained from ignoring his own words with his Dream Act-related executive order, has been effectively quashed with this little number.

¡Cuidado! No Forks Allowed at Obama’s Latino Luncheon

Judging from Obama’s actions at this years National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) luncheon, Obama’s newest fear is Latinos with forks. Obama had the Secret Service confiscate all the dinner forks from the participants at the June 22 event held in Orlando, Florida.

Several participants Tweeted that butter knives were banned outright and forks were confiscated as soon as the diners finished eating and before the President entered the room to speak.

The attendees were elected officials and their staffs, not just the average Jose off the street. Nevertheless, Obama took away their forks as if they were inmates at a prison. Many of these elected officials are probably wondering why the president was concerned for his safety.

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An Imperial Presidency

Obama continues to ignore our Constitution and his own words as it suits him to do so. This Heritage Foundation article describes his most apparent and egregious actions to install himself as the modern day version of King George III.

By repeatedly enacting laws that have been rejected by a duly elected Congress and the voters, he is willfully damaging the office he currently holds and placing himself above the rule of law. Through executive and regulatory fiat he has unilaterally imposed his version of Cap-and-Trade, the Employee Free Choice Act, Internet regulation, and waivers to federal education laws. He has simply ignored immigration law (and actively attacked those who attempt to enforce it). He has thumbed his nose at existing narcotics laws, the DOMA, and other legislation as it suited him to do so. Most recently, his Attorney General has carried out a two year long campaign of stonewalling Congressional investigations, which Obama himself has now topped off by claiming executive privilege. He has effectively argued that his Department of Justice is exempt from responding to Congressional investigations.

As the Heritage article argues, although we currently have an imperial presidency, we don’t need a new Declaration of Independence from our modern day King George. We need a President that will humble himself and take up his proper role as a servant of the people. We need a President who will abide by the Constitution that he has sworn to “preserve, protect, and defend.”

Update: Reason magazine picks up on the same theme and adds to the list of Mr. Obama’s anti-Constitutional offenses. Worse, they are forced to explain to Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid, why not getting his own way does not justify trashing the Constitution.

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Obama’s “personal narrative” crumbling

As we learn more and more about Obama’s “composite” girlfriends, and self-stated place of birth, we begin to see that much of this life before Washington was a fabrication and marketing scheme.

Now, we’re also learning that his much shared story about the death of this mother is also false.

Throughout the 2008 campaign season, and later, in support of his massive overhaul of our medical system, Obama was widely quoted as saying his mother had been the victim of a greedy and vindictive insurance system. He claimed she spent her final days in the hospital, fighting with insurance companies over her medical coverage.

For my mother to die of cancer at the age of 53 and have to spend the last months of her life in the hospital room arguing with insurance companies because they’re saying that this may be a pre-existing condition and they don’t have to pay her treatment, there’s something fundamentally wrong about that.

In reality, we are now learning that there is something fundamentally wrong with a person spreading yet another false narrative about the evils of insurance companies, as a means of obtaining the most powerful political office on the planet.

The fables Obama seems to have told about his alienation, his girlfriends and the rest of his over-intellectualized voyage of self-discovery actually pale in comparison to the whopper he told when running for election in 2008 that his mother died because she had been denied coverage and treatment of her disease. Scott revealed that in fact the expenses relating to her cancer had been paid by her insurance. Though she had a separate and totally unrelated dispute relating to disability coverage, Scott’s research proved that Obama’s statement during the 2008 presidential debate was fiction [...]

It bears repeating that the president knew this account was false because he served as his mother’s attorney in all her dealings with the insurance company.

It is time for Obama’s many, varied, and colorful personal narratives to be brought out into the sunlight. That this man is serial liar and much of his life appears to be little more than marketing spin and fable has become increasingly clear. It’s time that the media did its job and the American people saw through the hype and PR. It’s time to finally vet this man’s career and credentials.

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Bill Whittle: Merchants of Despair

I’ve been away for awhile, but had to break the fast for this video. Bill Whittle is in fine form with this edition of Afterburner.

This quote captures the theme of the video perfectly.

There is a wide, and growing, sense of despair in America today. A cloud of dismay that makes Jimmy Carter’s malaise of the late-70′s look like an utterly joyous romp in the park.

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Scripted AZ news?

There’s an interesting discussion going on at AZ’s Espresso Pundit.

Short version of the post is that the so-called mainstream news media is squelching a story on the liberal state senate candidate Jerry Lewis. Lewis is running in the AZ LD 18 recall election. LD 18 is currently represented by State Senate President, Russel Pearce. The Espresso Pundit post cites a lawsuit brought by a former colleague of Lewis’. That lawsuit contends that 1) Lewis was involved in a a string of ethically suspect activities involving charitable donations to a Tempe school, and 2) When a colleague complained about Lewis’ questionable activities, she was terminated.

Even more interesting are the comments after the post. Some comments claim Lewis is a poor manager and was the cause of significant financial and morale troubles at the Tempe, AZ school where he served as Principal. Other comments claim Lewis is being unfairly treated and the colleague was terminated as a result of dwindling budgets.

Regardless of how the case is finally decided, the primary claim in the AZ Espresso Pundit post remains very valid. We have endured months of stories of Scott Bundgaard’s personal issues, we’ve been ceaselessly regaled with headline after headline of Russel Pearce’s failings, but we hear nothing more than the occasional cricket chirp when the Democrat liberal candidate opposing Pearce in the recall election is facing serious ethical and possibly criminal charges.

Where is the mainstream media on this story and why are they refusing to cover something this important to the voters in AZ LD 18?

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Canucks Fans Disgrace Their Team, Their City and Their Nation

In a show of utter stupidity, Vancouver Canucks fans upset at the shutout loss to the Boston Bruins tonight overturned police cars, lit them on fire, broke windows and looted downtown Vancouver stores.

The world got to see exactly how petty and shallow Vancouverites (and Canadians in general) are. To quote the Vancouver mayor, “This is disgraceful.”

Around the world we’ve witnessed incredible political upheaval, with riots across the middle east and beyond where citizens have tried to overthrow oppressive governments and dictators…. and here in British Columbia we’re rioting, lighting fires and looting stores all because a hockey team lost a game.

Greece is facing a national economic meltdown. The riots in that nation are over the events that affect the lives of millions of people.

Vancouver riots over a lost hockey game, a game of two teams of multi-millionaires who get to play their sport and make fortunes while they do.

How shallow and pathetic a nation are we? That seems to be answered loudly and clearly tonight as Vancouver Police Department (VPD), with help from police forces across the lower mainland, attempts to clear out the troublemakers.

We don’t have a Mouammar Kadhafi killing or torturing us on his whim-of-the-day. We don’t have famine, like so many nations in Africa suffer from.

We have a hockey team that lost a hockey game.

We cause a riot over that????

It’s a national disgrace.

Are we really this shallow and petty?

I don’t think I’ve been this disgusted with the actions of my fellow Canadians in a long, long time. This isn’t like the G20 where police over-reacted and violated the rights of thousands of people. This is our fellow citizens acting disgracefully, bringing shame upon the Vancouver Canucks, the City of Vancouver and Canada as a whole, and for all the world to see.

What an atrocious way for Vancouver to make the world news.

I’m used to being ashamed of the actions of some of our police during these sorts of events. I’m not used to being ashamed of my fellow Canadians over something as petty as losing a hockey game, Stanley Cup or not.

Given the events that have unfolded around the world this year, it shows just how pathetic and childish we Canadians can behave.

I have to commend the Vancouver Police Department on their incredible restraint when faced with such gross stupidity from such a large group of people.

While I’m sure we’ll hear of examples where the VPD will be accused of a heavy hand, but after watching the footage for the past three hours, I’ve seen nothing but restraint and unbelievable patience. I for one will be siding with the VPD on their actions until there is clear and compelling evidence to the contrary.

During the G20 summit we saw police forces acting like thugs from 3rd-world dictatorships. That’s not happening tonight in Vancouver, and that is very impressive.

Back in 1994 there wasn’t nearly as many video cameras capturing the looters and other morons. Vancouver’s mayor made it clear that he wants everyone held accountable for their atrocious and inexcusable behaviour tonight. I fully expect he will keep his word on that, and I’ll be watching as this unfolds to see exactly how he accomplishes that goal.

What a shameful way for our nation to be displayed to the world.

 

Christopher di Armani is a guest blogger who writes extensively on protecting our God-given rights and freedoms, and occasionally on gross human stupidity wherever he finds it.

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Egyptian cleric explains Islamic rules on beating one’s wife

There’s no other way to describe this than surreal. This animal actually believes that Islamic rules on beating one’s wife “honors” women and that this behavior recommends Islam as a political philosophy/religion worthy of the world’s acceptance. He believes that since he taught his followers to threaten first and then avoid hitting hit her “in the face” (which might “make her ugly”) or openly “curse” her, Mohammed has somehow helped women out. This learned religious leader believes that Islam actually “honored” the wife by smacking her around (no more than ten times).

Following are excerpts from an interview with Egyptian cleric Sa’d Arafat, which aired on Al-Nas TV (Egypt) on February 4, 2010:
Click here to view this clip on MEMRI TV.

Interviewer: “Would you believe that the European women in our times yearns for a husband who would be like a guardian to her. I would like to provide the viewers with some statistics. 90% of British women do not want to marry a weak man, who sits down and cries the moment there is a problem. They say: No, such a man looks more like a woman. We want a manly man. [...]

“Wife beating is a serious accusation [leveled against Islam]. Let us examine this matter bit by bit.”

Sa’d Arafat: “Allah honored wives by instating the punishment of beatings.”

Interviewer: “Honored them with beatings? How is this possible?!”

Sa’d Arafat: “The prophet Muhammad said: ‘Don’t beat her in the face, and do not make her ugly.’ See how she is honored. If the husband beats his wife, he must not beat her in the face. Even when he beats her, he must not curse her. This is incredible! He beats her in order to discipline her.

“In addition, there must not be more than ten beatings, and he must not break her bones, injure her, break her teeth, or poke her in the eye. There is a beating etiquette. If he beats to discipline her, he must not raise his hand high. He must beat her from chest level. All these things honor the woman.

“She is in need of discipline. How should the husband discipline her? Through admonishment. If she is not deterred, he should refuse to share the bed with her. If she is not repentant, he should beat her, but there are rules to the beating. It is forbidden to beat her in the face or make her ugly.

When you beat her, you must not curse her. Islam forbids this.”

Interviewer: “With what should be beat her? With his bare hand? With a rod?”

Sa’d Arafat: “If he beats her, the beatings should not be hard, so that they do not leave a mark. He can beat her with a short rod. He must avoid beating her in the face or in places in the head where it hurts. The beatings should be on the body and should not come one right after the other. These are all choices made during the process, but beatings are allowed only as a last resort. [...]

“The honoring of the wife in Islam is also evident in the fact that the punishment of beating is permissible in one case only: when she refuses to sleep with him.”

Interviewer: “When she refuses to sleep with him?”

Sa’d Arafat: “Yes, because where else could the husband go? He wants her, but she refuses. He should begin with admonishment and threats…”

Interviewer: “Allow me to repeat this. A man cannot beat his wife…”

Interviewer: “…over food or drink. Beatings are permitted only in this case, which the husband cannot do without.” [...]

Did you ever wonder why it is that the cult-like religions (those that refuse to allow their followers to openly question teachings, or respond violently to any form of questioning) always seem to be OK with smacking women around, having several wives at the same time, and making it extremely easy for the husband to drop one woman (or several woman) when he sees another one that strikes his fancy?

Did you ever wonder why the guys who try to sell themselves as “manly men” also feel some strange compulsion to lord their so-called manliness over women with threats and physical violence?

Do you think that their actions might have more to do with certain men justifying their sexual perversions than it does with growing closer to God or god(s).

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