What is it about the Most Dim of the Democrats (whom I’ve taken to calling Dimocrats) and religion?
They just could not stand the idea of the Branch Davidians, so they had to slaughter them all in order to save them.
Now they are attacking the Amish. Guns drawn, raiding those horrid Criminal Cow Milkers….
It seems that the Looney Side Of Left can sort of barely tolerate Catholics, Jews, and Muslims (one supposes because there are so many of them, and with enough money to matter), but when it comes to Protestants, they seem to have, er, “selective listening skills” about that “make no law respecting an establishment of religion” thing…. and the “free practice thereof”…
But: They seem to want to pick on the smaller sects first, one presumes so as to establish precedent that can be used later for others.
So the Davidians were not exactly the most clueful folks on the planet. They had started as a normal enough splinter off of the Seventh Day Adventists and were profoundly anti-violence. Somewhere along the way, Koresh managed to take over and saw a way to make money selling guns. They got a Federal Firearms Licence and did all the paperwork. But somewhere in the The Feds under the Clintons, the idea of “religious nuts with guns” just stuck in someone’s craw. And despite the fact that Koresh regularly just drove into town in a truck and could have been picked up by the town cops with No Trouble At ALL; The Feds wanted a “show”; so went in guns drawn in full SWAT regalia. Well, we all know how that ended. The Feds effectively murdered them in order to save them. (Yes, partially ‘by their own hand”, but anyone with 1/2 a brain would not have sent an army toward a semi-paranoid group of isolationists with a religious zeal… No, there were much easier and much better ways to have done that… but Janet Reno wanted her “macho chops”… so in went The Armed Raid.)
Why bring this up? Well, if you take a look at some history here:
you find that much of what set the Branch Davidians apart from “us” is related more to issues of food and medical technology:
We are historically fundamentalist Seventh-Day Adventist, and we embrace the whole of the written counsels of Ellen White, 1844 through 1915, constituting the first sealing message of Revelation 3:12(a), plus the new light given by Ellet J. Waggoner and Alonzo T. Jones of the 1888 General Conference meeting in Minneapolis, the 1888 Message of the Righteousness of Messiah-Christ, wholly endorsed by Ellen White.
We further embrace the Spirit of Prophecy – new light advent revelations – of the Shepherd’s Rod Messenger, Victor Houteff, founder of the Davidian Seventh-Day Adventist Movement in 1930, preserving the Protestant Reformation (see prophecy chart at the end, below) according to the 430 year time prophecy of Ezekiel 4, constituting the second sealing message of Revelation 3:12(b).
The mother church would not permit the Davidian-SDA men, subject to the draft, to utilize their church membership benefit of conscientious objector status in time of war, long established by the SDA church. Seventh-day Adventist and Davidian Seventh-day Adventist young men were typically inducted into wartime service as combat medics and other non-combatant troop support.
Not exactly your ultra-violent type of ideation here…
We further embrace the Spirit of Prophecy
Representing the third phase of the Advent Movement, The Branch Message fully restored the Leviticus 23 Festivals of Israel, within a providential “core gathering” of the Tribes of Joseph (Ephraim and Manasseh) in the latter days. “The Branch” publications, under Ben Roden, also restored the Torah New Covenant observance of “the Daily” (ha Tamid), known as “the hour(s) of prayer” (and the Emblems of Messiah, the sacraments of His Body and Blood) twice daily (Acts 3:1 ; Num. 28:2-10 ; Dan. 8-11 “the daily” ; Mark 15:34-38 ; Acts 2:15 ; Rom. 12:1 ; summarized in the book Patriarchs and Prophets p.352 by E. G. White).
Historically, we further maintain the vegetarian and Scriptural kosher dietary standards according to the book Counsels on Diet and Foods by Ellen White, further upheld in the various written counsels of Victor Houteff (in The Shepherd’s Rod Message) and Benjamin Roden (Seven Letters to SDA), also in the counsels of Lois Roden, further restricting from our diet the use of animal based additives or derivatives common in many commercial foods today. This, we understand as the Genesis 1 diet, the pre-flood diet of Noah and his family, and of the prophets, such as Daniel. Also, the use of tobacco products is not permitted, plus the avoidance of caffeine products such as coffee, tea, and caffeinated soft drinks, and the abstinence of alcoholic beverages is a historical requirement in the SDA, DSDA and BDSDA organizations. It should be noted however, that the continued consumption of (kosher) meat products by the membership of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, particularly of those new in the faith, has never been a test a fellowship. […]
New members in the faith were carefully taught the principles of Scriptural kosher lifestyle, based upon the Torah, the Law of Moses, for the use of animal products, very much upheld in the early New Covenant faith under the Apostles, including the strict avoidance of any animal products with blood still present, the strict abstinence from any pork/swine products, strict abstinence from unclean seafood, such as shellfish, crab, lobster, fish without fins and scales etc., and, as Brother Roden taught, that even a vegetarian sandwich that is made, cut with the same knife that is used to cut a sandwich made with unclean meat, is also rendered treif, unclean, not kosher, and should be carefully avoided.
You learn a lot about folks in a small town restaurant. There was a Seventh Day Adventist group living just a ways outside of town. We had to know how to cook food for them. There was a Jewish family or two in town as well. While we weren’t a kosher restaurant, we could assure that no horrible sin was done… (pan fry his steak instead of using the grill that had bacon cooked on it in the morning, for example). And we had a strong awareness of what had caffeine and what did not. There was also a Christian Scientist group in town. Nice folks. Didn’t go to the Jewish Doctor much ;-)
At any rate, between the Mormons, Seventh Day Adventists, Jews, Christian Scientists, Jehovah Witness, Southern Baptist (no alcohol), Catholics (no meat on Fridays back then), etc. etc. you got a pretty good introduction to how much different folks can read different things in the same books.
(BTW, you will find The Feds from time to time persecuting Christian Scientists for not having medical procedures done to their kids, on the thesis that you can’t apply a Religion to a child just because they were born into it and must have The Feds be “en loco parentis” as any religious parent is already too “loco” to be “parentis”… )
So there is a well established pattern of The Feds (especially under Dimocrats, who can’t STAND anyone thinking something other than what they think) forcing itself down the throats of various religious groups against their will. (One presumes that Religious Rape is ok, when practiced by the Federal Government…)
But I digress…
We strive to keep informed with the latest corroborated health information and healthy lifestyle trends today, such as herbal medicine, food enzymes, water purification technology, along with many alternative diagnostic modalities now available. By following these counsels and Torah kosher practices we are able to avoid the diseases common today in production livestock (cancer, BSE-Creutzfelt-Jakob Disease/Mad Cow Syndrome, tuberculosis etc.) carried in the blood, plus avoiding the synthetic growth hormones and antibiotics used in commercial livestock universally. With this dietary practice, as a group, we typically enjoy life extension averages of ten years with overall quality of life, typically free from all degenerative disease, exceeding other mainstream religious groups and the American mainstream lifespan in general.
Oh, so those “Religious Nuts” live a longer and more healthy life? Well… Can’t have that, might set a bad example…
So here’s the point of bringing up the Branch Davidians: As a part of the Seventh Day Adventists, they are a “divergent” religious group that mostly “clings to their Bibles” and, horror of horrors, thinks you ought to do what it says. Rather like the Jews. (As noted above where they have ‘restored’ many of the Jewish practices into Christianity).
Is there another group that thinks maybe you ought to do what The Book says, without a whole lot of embellishment and re-interpretation?
Why yes, several, but in this case in particular, The Amish. I’m rather partial to The Amish, as my Grandmother was one. While I am not (being more of the computers, cars, and coffee with whiskey American Irish tradition… AKA Granddad) I can still honor the right of that part of my family to practice their religion without The Feds making laws that interfere with it.
So, what have they done now?
The Cow, The Horrible Evil Cow
The Amish have a tradition of keeping cows. They then milk the cows. They then drink the milk (and make cheese out of it). All without the application of “modern machines” not found in The Bible. One of their beliefs is that if it’s not in The Bible, you ought not to do it / use it. No guns. No electricity. No TV. No tractors. No borrowed money.
So the Old Order Amish live a simple life, close to the land, as God made it. As God told them to live it. Not dependent on banks. Not dependent on Monsanto for seeds. Not dependent on OPEC for gasoline. Not buying any GM cars. And not running their milk through computer controlled electrically driven milk pasteurizers…
Yes, those horrid Amish drink Raw Milk.
At this point, I must confess, that I, too, am a Hardened Criminal (by that definition). At about 6 years of age, while visiting my Uncle in Oregon, we ran out of milk just before dinner. My sister was sent out to the barn with a pail. I followed to watch, so can attest to the exact source of the milk. We took milk directly from the cow, into the milking pail. It was brought into the house, cooled just a bit, and then, horror of horrors! We drank it!
I still have very fond memories of that milk. Vaguely warm. Foamy top with cream still in it. Unlike any other.
So now you know my bias. Just as on the farm where my Dad grew up, drinking only Raw Milk his entire life until he left the farm, I, too, have consumed milk ‘right from the cow”. (As, I might add, does every calf…) In the farm town where I grew up there were many families with “a cow for the kids”. The Irish Dexter cow was bread to be of small size so as to make just about the amount of milk a family would need each day. (A regular dairy cow makes so much milk that it is impossible to use it all, even with cheese making).
The Feds have raided an Amish Milk Operation. Per news reports, they entered with guns drawn (in case the Amish might attack them with milk pails, one presumes). The Crime of selling milk that had not been cooked in modern devices not in The Bible being unacceptable…
I found this rather interesting video clip. It is not of the latest raid, but it does do a nice job of giving a flavor for the events:
It looks like they have been at this for a while, given the date on this article:
Feds raid Amish dairy and threaten action over raw milk sales
Friday, July 30, 2010 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
(NaturalNews) The U.S. government gestapo is at it again in its crusade against raw milk. Recently, the jackboots swarmed a Pennsylvania Amish man’s private dairy farm for the second time, falsely accusing him of violating the ridiculous prohibition on selling raw milk across state lines.
Farmer Dan Allgyer’s farm was raided by the same agents who paid him a visit back in February, telling him both times that they were there for an “inspection”. Just like last time, the agents drove flagrantly past “No Trespassing” and “Private Property”, this time arriving around 4:30 a.m. when Allgyer’s family was still asleep and as he was preparing to milk his cows.
The group began to interrogate Allgyer, and served him a warrant claiming they had “credible evidence” that he was involved in interstate commerce involving raw milk. According to Allgyer’s personal account, upon being questioned as to why the agents were at the farm so early when the warrant clearly stated that it was valid only at “reasonable times during ordinary business hours”, one of them retorted that “ordinary business hours for agriculture start at 5 a.m.”
After scouring farm equipment and taking a bunch of pictures, the agents eventually left. But the next morning, Allgyer received an overnight, urgent letter from officials about “regulatory action” that would be taken if he failed to take “corrective action”.
That link also does a good job of describing how “not selling anything” got translated into “interstate commerce” by that Great Progressive FDR:
Some people might not know this, but according to the precedent set by the Wickard v. Filburn case, practically everything can now be considered to affect “interstate commerce” and thus fall under federal jurisdiction. In the little-known case, then President Franklin Roosevelt coerced the Supreme Court into supporting certain New Deal proposals that revolutionized the definition of “interstate commerce”.
Wickard v. Filburn had to do with a farmer who was growing too much wheat during a time when there were wheat quotas. To make a long story short, the courts established that even growing your own wheat and feeding it to your cattle falls under the banner of “interstate commerce” because there is the potential to affect interstate commerce.
It is under this faulty premise that federal and state agents are challenging Farmer Allgyer and others who may be selling raw milk products directly to consumers. Though Allgyer is running a private farm, federal agents are operating on illegitimate precedent by accusing him of being involved in interstate commerce.
But there is a lot of coverage of the latest raid too:
War Against Terror. War Against Drugs. War Against Raw Milk?
By Gilion Dumas
Published on Mon, 05/09/2011
On the heels of the spectacular attack on Bin Laden’s Pakistan compound, Feds closer to home sprung the trap on another major threat to our personal safety – Amish farmers selling raw milk to their neighbors.
In a year-long sting operation that culminated in a pre-dawn raid last week, the FDA captured an Amish farmer in Pennsylvania selling unpasteurized milk to willing purchasers in the Washington, D.C. area. It was a rare headline-grabbing event in the ongoing battle between natural food fans and the nanny state.
Raw milk advocates tout the health and flavor benefits of milk that hasn’t had the good stuff cooked out of it with high-heat pasteurization. Personally, I think raw milk tastes great – it has a lot more flavor than regular milk. It is also wonderful for baking. Raw cream sets up in seconds, making the richest, best whipped cream ever. And don’t even get me started on raw-milk cheese.
The FDA, on the other hand, wants to eliminate the option of unpasteurized dairy entirely. It is not enough to alert consumers to possible risks of unpasteurized products and let the consumers chose for themselves. “It is the FDA’s position that raw milk should never be consumed,” said Tamara N. Ward, spokeswoman for the FDA.
State regulations governing the sale of raw dairy products vary widely, from allowing unrestricted sales to prohibiting them entirely. According to consumer advocates, ten states, including Washington, Idaho, and California, allow retail sales of raw milk.
Oregon allows limited sales of raw milk. By state statute, customers can go to a farm to buy raw milk, but only if the farmer has no more than three cows. Farmers are not allowed to deliver, nor can they advertise their product. A list of Oregon suppliers is here.
So what brought Rainbow Acres Farms into the FDA’s crosshairs? Pennsylvania allows the retail sale of raw milk. But Washington, D.C., Maryland, and other neighboring states prohibit all raw milk sales. Once Rainbow Acres sold its milk across state lines, it violated the FDA’s prohibition against interstate commerce in unpasteurized milk. The lesson? If you want raw milk, buy local – really local – don’t cross any state lines. And if you are in Maryland, you are out of luck.
This article says that the most recent event did, in fact, involve the actual transport across state lines of product. (Though, in fact, it isn’t needed for something to be defined as ‘interstate commerce’… as that farmer growing wheat fed to his own cows demonstrated.)
Even the more general press has it:
A yearlong sting operation, including aliases, a 5 a.m. surprise inspection and surreptitious purchases from an Amish farm in Pennsylvania, culminated in the federal government announcing this week that it has gone to court to stop Rainbow Acres Farm from selling its contraband to willing customers in the Washington area.
The product in question: unpasteurized milk.
It’s a battle that’s been going on behind the scenes for years, with natural foods advocates arguing that raw milk, as it’s also known, is healthier than the pasteurized product, while the Food and Drug Administration says raw milk can carry harmful bacteria such as salmonella, E. coli and listeria.
“It is the FDA’s position that raw milk should never be consumed,” said Tamara N. Ward, spokeswoman for the FDA, whose investigators have been looking into Rainbow Acres for months, and who finally last week filed a 10-page complaint in federal court in Pennsylvania seeking an order to stop the farm from shipping across state lines any more raw milk or dairy products made from it.
The farm’s owner, Dan Allgyer, didn’t respond to a message seeking comment, but his customers in the District of Columbia and Maryland were furious at what they said was government overreach.
“I look at this as the FDA is in cahoots with the large milk producers,” said Karin Edgett, a D.C. resident who buys directly from Rainbow Acres. “I don’t want the FDA and my tax dollars to go to shut down a farm that hasn’t had any complaints against it. They’re producing good food, and the consumers are extremely happy with it.”
The FDA’s actions stand in contrast to other areas where the Obama administration has said it will take a hands-off approach to violations of the law, including the use of medical marijuana in states that have approved it, and illegal-immigrant students and youths, whom the administration said recently will not be targets of their enforcement efforts.
What can I say?
I think it’s a bit crazy to just swill any old animal product without killing the bugs in it first, if you can. I think most religious practices of the world verge on lunacy. I also respect the rights of other folks to think differently and I fully respect the rights of those folks who ARE of a religious bent to believe and practice what they believe. Heck, some marginal religions even cut off the end of “Mr. Happy” on their boy babies… talk about “child abuse”… /sarcoff>
Many Amish have had to move off of the farm. That is an essential consequence of having as many children “as God provides” while not having unlimited money with which to buy each young couple a large enough plot of farmable land to be productive and sustainable. They generally try to take jobs where they are reasonably close to their Amish beliefs. ( It is allowed, for example, to work in a cheese making factory that uses electric machinery and lighting as long as you are not the one owning it. So: many Amish work in “farm related” industries off of the farm. That, too, is how you can have video of an “Amish Dairy”, as the person who owns the place will not be Old Order Amish. Even if the workers are.)
So if I’ve been forced by economic circumstance to “live among the English”; am I also to be forced by legal circumstance to consume their foods, to forgo my beliefs in my non-work time, to drink only “cooked milk” as I don’t own my own cows?
At what point does a food regulation get to trump Freedom Of Religion? Was this country not founded by folks looking for a place to just be left alone to practice whatever religion they liked? Didn’t we put it in the First Amendment and as the very first thing as it was That Important?
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
And notice that it says “or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”. It does NOT say “unless the FDA doesn’t like it”.
The Bible contains very specific do’s and dont’s about food and diet. It is VERY clear that food and diet are clearly religious issues (just ask any Jew or Muslim). So if someone has a religious belief that they ought to do only what is stated in The Bible, is that to be “prohibited” if it is in conflict with the FDA? Janet Reno? Obama?
If the FDA finds that GMO plants and animals are just fine, does that mean that Pig Genes can be put in cows and you must be forced to eat them as your religious belief takes second place? What if you think GMO corn is an “abomination” due to it being the product of Man Playing God? Ought not you be able to choose what to eat?
FWIW, I have my reservations about GMO products. Mostly because we have no clue what we’re doing with them. You splatter the genetics all over the place then assume you didn’t screw anything up? Just wrong. Each gene codes for many things, it’s not ‘one gene one protein’ as the theory goes. So cram a gene in and “lock in the on position” that gene and anything else where it got crammed and what happens? Oh, we don’t know… but the plant didn’t die, so go ahead and feed it to everyone… Oh, and it was delivered with an antibiotic resistance gene as a ‘marker’ and done via some infective virus parts, but what could go wrong?…. Despite that, I eat GMO stuff if I don’t have a lot of choice…
But that is what this is all about CHOICE.
How can you have freedom without choice?
If someone else is choosing for you, you are a farmed animal, not a free person. By definition, freedom is the right to choose, even if you choose things with bad consequences. Saving folks from “bad decisions” is another phrase for Tyranny. It simply lets someone else make the bad choices for them. (Oh, do you really think some bureaucrat in DC or a paid party hack is going to make better decisions than you can make? Really? How about those military contracts? How about the way the banks have been ‘managed’? How about the great job they are doing on the border? How about our “energy strategy”? Oh, sorry, we don’t have one…)
So I don’t know why it is, but I can clearly see that it is: The Feds hate actual freedom, and the Dimocrats in particular can’t stand actual freedom of religion. There is an attack on any freedom that challenges their power to meddle in your life. Even if it takes guns drawn raids on minority religions to do it.
Why do I care about Amish Raw Milk? Because it is the more “fringy” folks who get smacked around first. They are the canary in this particular coal mine. What is being done to them, today, will be done to all, tomorrow. We need to defend the freedoms of those we find most “odd” if we are to have any freedoms of our own.
So be it Italian prosciutto ham (made the traditional way is banned in the USA, despite a few hundred years of experience in Italy that it is just fine…) or raw milk, or even “raw milk cheeses” ( many cheeses are made with raw milk, btw, but a recent Fed action has threatened to ban them, so the flavor of most of your cheeses would change…) or any of a hundred other foods, The Feds want to control what you have to choose, and are making noises about controlling how much of it too.
You can fully expect that once the Feds have your medical records, anyone with a “Body Mass Index” that is “out of line” will be having orders given to “get treatment or else”. There have already been folks threatened with having their kids stolen by the government for them being too fat. (Again, never mind that BMI just divides weight by height and makes no allowance for genetic variation where blacks have very long light legs while Germanic and Slavic whites have short legs and heavy bodies adapted to cold climates. Wrong numbers? No kids for you…)
We are not all blessed with the body of a “10” Model. I can eat like a pig, and get about 10 lbs added, then it just won’t budge. I can starve and drop about 5 lbs. Then the “thermostat” kicks in and the metabolism shuts down fuel burn and it just won’t budge. My BMI is usually on the “high side” even if I’m starved. Why? Big farmer hands, feet, bones. Very long body (with all that mass / length) and very short legs. BMI is just a broken number for me. Not enough legs… So since I can’t change my “body to leg ratio” and since my metabolic set point holds my weight about at a constant +/- 4% no matter what I eat or how much / little; I’m going to be deemed “unacceptable”. I already am under California guidelines for children in school… Think this is nutty? How about this Massachusetts paper on BMI screening for schools:
Never mind that if you work out a lot you may not “fit” the profile either:
The BMI may not apply to some individuals with more than normal muscle mass and acceptable levels of body fat. In some ethnic groups, such as Pacific Islanders, BMI overestimates fatness and risk. For children and the elderly, BMI may be misleading since the muscle and bone to height relationship is changing.
No, just because it’s a broken Procrustean Bed, that does not mean a Government Official can not be tasked to assure you are cut to fit it.
So I don’t know why, and I don’t know what pathology causes it; but I can clearly see that the Dimocrats in particular, but Government in general has a “Food Fetish”. It’s also clear that the fight begins with the most marginal among us. It starts with the genetically Fat Kid, and it starts with the Amish milk farm.
It’s time for a good pruning of The Federal Government (and most State Government too). Looks to me like we can start with eliminating the Federal Department of Education and giving the FDA a much more narrow mandate… (Or maybe just eliminate it and say “see the Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture” for guidelines…)
It is precisely the attacks on minority religions that make clear the threats to us all, and make clear exactly what to “cut” from the Federal Budget.
======== Cut Here =============
Department of Education (States can do it)
Department of Agriculture (States can do it)
Department of Health and Human Services (States)
War on Drugs
Department of Housing and Urban Development (States)
Department of Commerce (Doesn’t need a department)
Department of Labor (States can do it)
Department of Energy (do they actually DO anything? That works, I mean…)
Department of Transportations (give the highways to the states)
Department of Homeland Security (the “cop a feel” department..)
======== Pune Strongly ==========
Department of State (zero the “foreign aid” bribery budget)
Department of Treasury
Department of Defense (i.e. end the foreign wars)
Department of Interior (Give the Indians their freedom)
Department of Justice (end the war on drugs)
======== Assess ==============
Department of Veterans Affairs
I figure I could get the Federal Government down to about 25% of the present level, and with the major impact being that folks would have more freedom and better more local control. Oh, and you could eat what you wanted too. Even cream cheese and bagels… with or without prosciutto. Pasteurized or not… even two of them if you like it…