We're not in moral decline

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I’m sick and tired of hearing all this moral decline rhetoric recently. For the sake of argument, I’m choosing to take a positive perspective.

In light of the recent gun debate, I want to point out that gun deaths are down overall. They have been in relative decline for the past 20 years – not to mention that gun deaths against children are down as well. If we’re becoming so immoral, then why aren’t the numbers going up overall?

Even though there is a much more public display of atheism, the majority of Americans still identify as Christian – an estimated 75-80 percent. No country on Earth, that I’m aware of, has that high a percentage of professed Christians. If we’re becoming so ungodly, then why is that number so high? This isn’t to say that all atheists are immoral, but I figured I’d point out the fact that Christianity still has an overwhelming majority.

Divorce rates also have been in steady decline since the 1970s. Current statistics say that actually 70 percent of all first-time marriages in this country stay together.

By the way, didn’t America once support racial persecution and segregation? Was society more moral back then? Ask an older black person who was around when they were treated like second-class citizens and see what he has to say. I don’t think that’s the kind of moral society in which we need to be living.

I also don’t think it was very moral when we committed Native American genocide at the beginning of our history. We love to forget about that little nugget!

People love to throw around the term “moral decline” like America used to be this utopian society, but this just isn’t true. There are many things that have improved and are continuing to improve, so at least consider that next time you think we’re just going down the drain. This doesn’t mean we can’t do better in current times, but there are plenty of positives to point out as well. It’s not all negative, folks!

Dallas Duff

Evans

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faithson
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faithson 01/03/13 - 01:17 am
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pearls of wisdom

thanks Mr. Duff, I too see a wonderful and troublesome future for our 6 children and their families, but not negative.

myfather15
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myfather15 01/03/13 - 02:25 am
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I would respectfully

I would respectfully disagree, somewhat. I do agree that people in general are NOT as barbaric as they use to be. Human beings thought process has evolved. We are more compassionate, sensitive people as a whole, for the most part. We understand every human being should be treated with unalienable rights, not just certain races.

But we are also a society who legalizes the intentional murder of unborn children, which I believe even the barbaric people of old times would have thought vile. We live with people who will use whatever they can to get what they want. The gay community claims they are treated the same as the slaves and Native Americans, just to get their way. The ol "If your not for us, you're oppressing us."

Just do a quick google search, you will find Christians being fined and arrested for holding Bible studies in their own homes. Christ isn't supposed to be mentioned in public, especially in schools.

Criminals can break into your home, step on a knife, get cut and then sue you because you didn't have the knife secured. People can trespass on your property and swim in your pool, drowned or get hurt then sue you because you didn't cover your pool or have a fence to protect people from it. The examples could go on and on. No, it isn't just a moral decline but it's a decline of SANITY!! Want a classic example of the decline of sanity and common sense, look at our elected representatives, we are definately in decline. ENOUGH SAID!!

carcraft
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carcraft 01/03/13 - 06:40 am
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I also would disagree. Look

I also would disagree. Look at the achievement tests and the numbers of teacher caught having students cheat or cheating by altering the papers. Look at how acceptable it is for a politician to lie, even under oath like Bill Clinton! Look at our newspapers and the lengths they go to distort the news such as the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shootings. More people are killed by hands and feet than by rifles (yes even assault weapons) yet the press distorts this to the point people think our rights need to be removed! Hefner of playboy fame is getting married again, to a twenty something. A man who provided sperm for a lesbian couple is being sued for child support. The moral decay and insanity is abundant and evident everywhere I look.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 01/03/13 - 07:29 am
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"Even though there is a much

"Even though there is a much more public display of atheism, the majority of Americans still identify as Christian – an estimated 75-80 percent. "

I'd venture to say that approximately 50% of those who you say identify as Christians, do so in word only. That answers your question "If we’re becoming so ungodly, then why is that number so high? Until your heart has a change, you can call yourself a Christian all year long but your actions do not produce the fruit of the spirit necessary to be Christ-like.

If someone see a bright and troublesome future, evidently someone has blinders on. We have millions of unborn children killed, our jails and youth detention centers are overflowing, and people in general are more openly immoral and don't care. Just take for example the way Kathy Griffin conducted herself on the Anderson Cooper show New Years Eve......if this is the morality of our society, then I'd have to say the future doesn't look real bright.

Techfan
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Techfan 01/03/13 - 08:56 am
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An ex-con turned

An ex-con turned controversial pastor was indicted Wednesday on charges of defrauding the state's Medicaid system.

Michael Salman, 39; his wife, Suzanne Salman, 34; and his brother, Frank Salman, 37, are accused of misrepresenting their income and bilking the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System out of $118,000.

This is the latest legal trouble for the self-styled preacher, whose fight with the city over zoning laws has fueled a debate on conservative news shows and websites over religious freedom.

Authorities say that for four years beginning in 2008, Michael and Suzanne Salman received $73,000 in free health services for themselves and their children.

Frank Salman received $43,000 in coverage for himself and his children.

"It is unacceptable for anyone who does not legitimately need AHCCCS assistance to devise this kind of scheme that ultimately rips off taxpayers and depletes badly-needed resources for the truly needy," Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne said in a statement Wednesday.

According to authorities, the Salmans lied about their household income to qualify for state assistance. At the same time the Salmans were receiving state Medicaid, they were employees of a national credit-card-processing company.

Authorities said Suzanne is currently the registered agent for the National Bureau of Merchant Services and that both she and Michael were sole board members of the company when it was formed in 2004.

Horne said the couple earned $6,000 to $8,000 per month while claiming they made $1,600.

Neither Michael nor Suzanne Salman could be reached for comment Wednesday.

The Salmans face multiple individual charges of fraud, theft, forgery and perjury.

Frank Salman said Wednesday that he could not speak about the charges. In a brief interview, he indicated the charges were likely a form of retaliation for Michael's ongoing legal battle with the city of Phoenix.

"I wish I could tell you. I wish I could speak," Frank said.

Michael Salman is currently serving a 60-day jail sentence following a 2010 conviction on 67 misdemeanor zoning charges related to his backyard church.

Michael, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship Community Church, fought the city for years, claiming that zoning laws were restricting his First Amendment rights.

The zoning charges stem from the construction of a 2,000-square-foot building behind his house. When seeking a permit from the city of Phoenix, Salman indicated it would be used as a game room. That designation prohibited using the structure to hold church services due to fire-safety and occupancy regulations.

But the city said Michael used the building to conduct services attended by dozens of people who paid tithes to Michael each week. County-assessor records classify the property as a church. Michael Salman and his wife have not paid property taxes since 2008.

Michael Salman's supporters claim he is being persecuted for attempting to hold Bible study meetings.

Lawyers with the Rutherford Institute, a Virginia civil-liberties organization representing Michael in the case against the city, could not comment on the fraud charges.

They said they are continuing to fight for Michael's release from the Lower Buckeye Jail on the zoning violations and are waiting for the court to rule on a habeus corpus motion.

In 1993, Michael Salman was convicted of aggravated assault stemming from a drive-by shooting. He served three years.

Frank Salman in 1992 was arrested on second-degree-murder charges after he and his cousin shot and killed an 18-year-old shoplifter who had stolen several six-packs of beer from the family convenience store.

At the time, Frank told police the shoplifter pointed a gun at him inside the store and again during a chase across Camelback Road. Police said there was no evidence the teenager was armed. He was shot in the back of the head.

Frank was acquitted on the charges.

Call 12 for Action reporter Veronica Sanchez and Republic reporter JJ Hensley contributed to this article.

Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/business/call12foraction/articles/20120829indic...

Techfan
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Techfan 01/03/13 - 09:26 am
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Rule of thumb:

If a story sounds fishy, check it out.
Just do a quick google search, you will find Bat Boy attacked a fifth-grader in an Orlando, Florida, park, and quite a few stories about alien crash landings. They might be fishy as well.

faithson
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faithson 01/03/13 - 09:37 am
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anyway

“People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest anyway.
If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway.
For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.”

― Mother Teresa

GiantsAllDay
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GiantsAllDay 01/03/13 - 09:39 am
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Mr. duff

Hey Mr. Duff, if we are not in a moral decline, what do the crazy Christians have left to talk about? If Satan is out of work, so are the churches, right?

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 01/03/13 - 09:57 am
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Institutionalized social evil may SEEM to be down, somewhat...

however, personal moral responsibility and a general sense of there being external standards to guide personal choices is way, way down. People who have highly developed civic and moral standards for living their lives and raising their children DO NOT NEED all the absurd and intrusive laws that are being foisted upon us.

We are having our personal freedoms limited today because so many of us don't know how to be responsible human beings, much less adequate citizens. An alarming number no long believe we should restrain ourselves from anti-social or even disgusting behavior toward our fellow man unless it is expressly against the law.

That kind of formation and training has to come very early in life, and it just isn't happening in the daycare settings, not in the way a mother would handle it if she was at home with her babies and toddlers. There are too many children to deal with effectively in daycare. The result is the learning of successful predatory behavior, which is exactly what we are seeing more and more in our society, from gang and thug behavior right on up to the more socially appealing denizens of business and industry who have all the moral scruples of reptiles.

This assessment doesn't even consider what our nation's overwhelming willingness to slaughter our own unborn children says about what kind of people we are. To have that totally optional slaughter written down a law is not just chilling, but abominable and evil beyond words. And then to be militantly, mindlessly sentimental about baby seals, whales, dolphins and domestic pets tests the boundaries of sanity and even humanity.

If you think the future looks bright with that trending future of our social order, you aren't seeing the whole picture very clearly. I have trust and confidence in God's providence and mercy, but I am not encouraged about our society direction at all.

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 01/03/13 - 10:02 am
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Perfect quote, Faithson

Blind eyes and deaf ears. It's desperately sad, but so many simply don't believe that anyone is there except "them".

rebellious
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rebellious 01/03/13 - 10:06 am
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Rose Colored Glasses

It seems each generation has their apocalyptic myopia. When I was a child, The USSR and it's threats to bury America prompted films on how to get under your school desk in case of a nuclear blast. Hippies burned draft cards and women burnt bras. Our nation was caught up in a war where we could not identify the enemy, drugs were rampant and Madeline O'Hare clamored for the removal of prayer from the schools.

The generation before me saw the Dust Bowl and a financial depression which makes todays recession look like a boontime.

The world will always be filled with problems, conflict, strife and discontent. With time it morphs and manifest itself differently, but is driven by the same "good vs evil" struggle first documented with Cain and Abel.

Each individual must decide how they will deal with the worry and stress of their days problems. Somewhere between the eternal optimist and Chicken Little is where we should be. Able to appreciate the freshness of each spring's blooms and resurgence of new life, yet ever cogniscent of the dangers and evils lurking.

It is up to you how you walk each day.

RMSHEFF
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RMSHEFF 01/03/13 - 10:13 am
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Where did Dallas get his information?

There are so many untruths in this letter it is hard to know where to begin. In 1948, 91% of Americans identified themselves as Christian and in 1989 it was 82%. Today, 2012, it is 78%. These numbers have little meaning because as our Lord said in Matthew 7:21, the profession of belief in Him means nothing: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ If you use this statement to determine who is a true Christian you will come to a different conclusion as to how many are Christians.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 01/03/13 - 10:17 am
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Can't Help Declining

Divorce rates also have been in steady decline since the 1970s. Current statistics say that actually 70 percent of all first-time marriages in this country stay together.

With marriages declining, wouldn't divorce rate decline also?

CobaltGeorge
164336
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CobaltGeorge 01/03/13 - 10:28 am
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OK

If We're not in moral decline, Why does everybody now lock their doors?

Back in my early times, nobody knew what a house key was.

RMSHEFF
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RMSHEFF 01/03/13 - 10:38 am
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Divorce rates

The writer states that divorce rates have declined since 1970. He is a perfect example of those that voted for President Obama, ie "low information voter." He most like red this headline on the front of a National Inquirer and just took it as fact. His statement is correct on the surface but if you look into the statistics you will find that while the divorce rate has declined 10% the marriage rate has declined 18%. People between the ages or 18 and 28 are choosing "cohabitation" instead of marriage. This age group accounted for the majority of divorces. This leads to another statistic: Today more than half of all births to American women under 30 are born out of wedlock and this is the primary driver of poverty and increases the probability that the child will not grow up productive citizen.

R

InChristLove
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InChristLove 01/03/13 - 10:50 am
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Rule of Thumb.... Do not

Rule of Thumb....

Do not assume a poster is discussing a certain incident when no names have been provided.

Techfan, although you posted a lengthy post concerning Michael Salman, I fail to see where his name or this incident has been mentioned. (Just for some added facts...another article quotes the attendance to be only 15-20 people meeting, not "dozens of people" and since him and his wife have 6 children I would say that almost half in attendance is his own family).

The only comment made was "you will find Christians being fined and arrested for holding Bible studies in their own homes" you naturally assumed the commenter was speaking of Mr. Salman. If fact, there are several others.

What about the family that was fined in San Juan Capistrano, California, for hosting a Bible study without a permit (a situation that was inevitably amended, with the city changing its code).

Also, what about the Florida family. Shane and Marlen Roessiger, of Venice, are being held accountable for hosting weekly, Friday night home Bible study meetings that include as many as 10 participants.

“It is difficult to understand how it is illegal to have a prayer meeting on Friday night with a half dozen people but it is alright if I invited the same group on Monday evening to watch Monday night Football, Shane said in an interview "

The Roessiger family is also under fire for posting a small sign in their front yard. It reads, “Need Prayer (941) 484-4915.”

So we can put yard sale signs up or political signs up, but let someone advertise prayer assistance and you're stuck with a $250 a day fine. Guess my family is going to have to stop meeting every Sunday or start looking to be fined.....since we have 5 children, 4 spouses, and 6 grands in the house at one time.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 01/03/13 - 10:51 am
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I Really Glad

that are some on here that will fill in between the lines of my many One Liners. Thanks

soapy_725
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soapy_725 01/03/13 - 10:54 am
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Jewel of Wisdom. Look at the fruit.....
Unpublished

of this Christian Nation. We murder innocents at home and around the world for the sake of personal convenience and wealth. We worship at the temple of alcoholism. We worship at the alter of GREED. We lie, cheat and steal in the church. Our religious leaders molest children. Why not take a look at America from a Muslim or Hindu prospective.

RMSHEFF
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RMSHEFF 01/03/13 - 11:05 am
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Yes ColbaltGeorge

There is so much in the white spaces between the lines! We live in a world of headlines and few take time to discern the truth. President Obama and the main stream media know we have low information voters and take full advantage.

Jane18
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Jane18 01/03/13 - 11:05 am
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Morals Going Down

I'm sorry to tell you, Dallas Duff, it is Not rhetoric concerning the moral decline of our people. I don't know what and where you have been seeing and listening to, but you are missing the downfall of the once greatest, strongest and richest nation on this planet. And what would bring a downfall, the morals(distinguishing right and wrong, character, sexuality, feelings for our fellow man) that are not upheld by our people. Oh sure, some of us try, but all one has to do is listen to the news, watch television, listen to the music, play video games, watch our neighbors and friends even our own families, and it is so plain to see, something is missing. You know what is missing? Belief in GOD! Because of so much meaness, lying and deceiving reverends, crooked politicians, rich and want to be richer people, and especially one group of people that want to rule the world, it is a rough time, and going to get rougher. But, because there are some "righteous" people in America, we will get through the hard part, but only because we know WHO will be on our side! >As far as the ex-con turned pastor story, this guy was a crook, and LORD knows what else. When people are so foolish not to check someone out who professes to be something, or "a man of GOD", and find out they have been taken for a ride, maybe next time they will be smarter and check everything about that person!

OpenCurtain
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OpenCurtain 01/03/13 - 11:11 am
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Moral Decline Debated

Skewed facts.

One Example: 70 less divorces true.

Most people are shacking up holding off on amarriage and having babies then moving on.

Lets speak of the other Genocides in America while we are at it.
and estimated 14 million abortions. The interment and breeding camps of the 1950-90's called government housing projects.

Hotels that make more $$$ due to their porn movie channels.

Cable TV right into our homes that offer 100 Porn Channels

An Internet that created a whole new level of porn.

Victoria Secret model fashions show for the Christmas Holidays.

Kathy G. offering a to give CNN New Anchor Anderson a BJ on Live TV on New Years then going through the motions

City & PC police Approved GAY Parades with 3/4 naked people in S&M attire.

NAMBLA as a US Federally approved and recognized 501c

Girls Gone Wild - Spring Break Party Buses on campuses.

Repeated Attacks on the 10 commandments by those that hate moral remembers.

Just to name a few Moral Issues.

Are you blind?
No Morals aren't in decline,
they are practically DEAD.

Jane18
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Jane18 01/03/13 - 11:16 am
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RMSheff's " Low Information Voters"

You hit it dead on! Just look at all these oh-so-great men elected to be sheriff of their respective counties........................

Jane18
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Jane18 01/03/13 - 11:20 am
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Open Curtain's List

Thank you OC, I wish I could have thought of your list to add to my comment..................

Young Fred
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Young Fred 01/03/13 - 11:30 am
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Getting past the headline, I

Getting past the headline, I actually agreed with most of Mr./Mrs. Duff’s rant, despite my misgivings concerning the statistics quoted. At least until I got to this part:

“I also don’t think it was very moral when we committed Native American genocide at the beginning of our history. We love to forget about that little nugget!”

What a convienient talking point this has become!!! I just wonder if most peeps actually realize how “Native Americans” treated each other? Not saying we (as in caucasian europeans) didn’t act badly, just saying we didn’t “act” any differently.

Of course with some, murder and maheim somehow magically transforms into a more henious act if the peeps are of a different race.

Lets see if I have this right – shooting a fellow human being through a scope is worse than twirling a child’s head against a tree. Because of the racial make-up of the perpetrators and victims I suppose?

Get a clue.

allhans
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allhans 01/03/13 - 11:31 am
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I hear that Kathy Griffin had

I hear that Kathy Griffin had great applause for her actions...

Did someone say "moral decay".

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 01/03/13 - 11:42 am
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TECHFAN - On the National Enquirer

But they sure have exposed many a political mess also that what some called Main Stream Media refused to touch because of political-media alliances.

Which ones did you support from the short list below?

The scandal of 2009, the John Edwards affair

Sen. Larry Craig's embarrassing escapade in a Minneapolis airport men's room.

1987, Gary Hart with Donna Rice on his lap on a boat called "Monkey Business.

1st to release that the law firm of Hillary Clinton's brother, Hugh Rodham, was paid $400,000 in fees by two convicted felons to lobby for pardons by his brother-in-law, President Clinton.

1st Exclusive account of Bristol Palin's pregnancy. Palin is the daughter of Sarah Palin,

1st release the salacious details of the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky affair.

YES they pander to Supermarket buyers with many junk stories.

BUT they sure have killed many a political career.

RMSHEFF
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RMSHEFF 01/03/13 - 11:51 am
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Jane18

I assume you are referring to the Richmond county sheriffs race. You are correct. There was no comparison between the qualifications and work history of the two candidates and the voters mad a poor choice. We must ask what was the basis of their choice if it was not qualifications. I don't think in this case it was a lack of knowledge between the two. The voters had all the information and made their choice and will have to live with, in my opinion, the least best man for the job. Time will tell.

RMSHEFF
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RMSHEFF 01/03/13 - 12:03 pm
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Opencurtian

All is required is a scandalous charge that makes headlines in the market of the "low information voter." It is next to impossible correct the falsehood or half truth. Rush correctly refers to these "headline" reporters as the "drive by media." They have no regard for the whole truth only to shape public opinion with a headline. This headline always benefits the liberal cause.

duffstuff
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duffstuff 01/03/13 - 06:10 pm
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missing the point

This is Dallas Duff, the writer of the editorial. I just want to add a few things. First off I submitted this article meaning it to be a provocative question about the moral state of society, not a statement saying that there is no moral decay. Sure there are aspects of moral decay but there are positives to point out as well. My point was that we focus so much on the negative but we completely ignore any of the positive. Almost nobody on here was willing to acknowledge any positives, which basically makes my point! And it really annoys me when people say that not everyone who professes to be christian are really christian. Ok, I'll give you the fact that not everyone acts like christians, but who's job is it to determine who's christian enough or not? Certainly not mans job. And when you say that probably only 50% of the population are true christians that is based upon what information? In the Bible it says that we are not to judge the hearts of others. This applies particularly to christians judging other christians. If someone says they accept Christ who are you to say that they arent truly christian?

Some of you say that the idea of marriage is declining in general. Maybe, but I sure know a heck of alot of people who are married. And I know for sure that people are getting married at later ages these days than they use to. If you think about the people you know who are over 40 I bet you're gonna find that most of those people are married. Don't take my word for it though. Test out the numbers in your own life and see what you find? I do however think that the number of babies born to single mothers today is a problem but there are many societies with much higher percentages of atheism with much lower rates of this, so I'm not sure its totally a moral thing as far as christian principals are concerned. There may be some other factors to look at as well. I'm not denying that christian teachings are good but I'm not sure that is the most direct connection between the problem when you look at the world as a whole.

Another thing I want to add is the fact that I didn't vote for Obama since I'm apparently being accused of that as well. I'm not a liberal despite what certain people may think, but that is beside the point. The point is some things get better and some things get worse. Somebody above mentioned pornography and Kathy Griffin making BJ jokes. Well I'm not gonna say that all this is overly moral but I would trade that for racial persecution any day of the week. (just sayin) We can talk about the negative all day long if you want, but for pete sake lets acknowledge the positive as well.

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