Monday, April 23, 2007

Currents Under the Surface

Legislative Update
  • Congress: Iraq Supplemental
  • House Judiciary Committee: Hate/Thought Crimes (a Religious Freedom issue)
  • House: Head Start Reauthorization (and Religious Freedom issue)
  • Senate: Medicare Prescription Drugs
Having passed the momentum of the first 100 days of the new Congress and the new majority, and not yet fully into appropriations season, we are in a period where a lot of the significant activity that will make for tomorrow's headlines is being worked out now behind the scenes in committees and subcommittees.

This makes these especially fruitful days for prayer as significant pieces of legislation are in their formative stages.

The big headlines from this week will likely be the Iraq supplemental bill that Congress sends to the President. The withdrawal timeline and whether or not that language will be binding are yet to be determined. (It was binding in the House version and not binding in the Senate version.)

Less noticed by the mainstream media, and noticed more in conservative circles is the "hate crimes" or "thought crimes" bill and its implications for religious freedom, and its overt references to "the actual or perceived" motivation for a crime. The bill makes reference to various "perceived" flags in a crime 11 times. Such subjective language is extremely dangerous and wide open to nearly any interpretation--some easily not even thought of today.