Personhood Referendum Tuesday in Mississippi

While a number of elections throughout the nation are set to take place on Tuesday, a major focus is on Mississippi, where voters will be deciding on the definition of a “person.” Proposition 26, otherwise known as a personhood amendment, declares that a person is a human at the moment of fertilization. And as the vote approaches, Les Riley, the director of Personhood Mississippi who launched the Yes on 26 drive, is encouraging supporters to utilize a major weapon: prayer. He asks believers to request that God would glorify himself and work in a way that is far beyond “what we’ve even got the sense to ask for.We would just ask that God would work in a way that would astonish the whole world and that it would be clear that he was the one working and not us,” Riley says. “This will be the first time in history that a state has recognized the humanity of the unborn and their God-given right to life,” he points out. “It would make abortion illegal within our borders.

Faith is No. 1 Reason for Teens’ Abstinence

A recent study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows the most frequent reason teenagers give for abstaining from sex is that the behavior goes against their religion or morals, Baptist Press reports. Among the 57 percent of girls and 58 percent of boys ages 15-19 who said they had never had sex, 41 percent of girls and 31 percent of boys chose “against religion or morals” as their main reason for not being sexually active. The least-chosen option was “don’t want to get a sexually transmitted disease.” Researchers also found that the rate of teenagers having sex has declined slightly from the last report, which was released in 2002; however, the percent of sexually active teen females has decreased dramatically since 1988 — down from 51 percent to 43 percent. Valerie Huber, executive director of the National Abstinence Education Association, said the study showed the abstinence movement and message were “not only resonating, but also making a difference in the lives of youth.”

Thousands Protest at White House over Oil Pipeline

Thousands of activists opposed to a plan to build a 1,700-mile oil pipeline that cuts through the heart of the United States descended on the White House on Sunday to ratchet up the pressure on President Obama to scrap the project. The protest of TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline came exactly one year before the 2012 election and was designed to send a message to Obama that failure to act will lead to a drop-off in enthusiasm from the environmentalists who backed him in 2008. Backers of the project say the pipeline will create thousands of jobs and help reduce U.S. dependence on Middle Eastern oil. Opponents of the project say the pipeline is risky for the environment and public health and runs counter to Obama’s call during his run for the White House to work to end the “tyranny of oil.”

  • The ‘tyranny of oil’ actually lies in the hands of OPEC, largely Muslim, oil-producing nations who can use our dependency on their oil against us

Police Arrest Protesters in Atlanta, Honolulu, Riverside

Police arrested 20 people after an Occupy Atlanta protest rally in a city park spilled onto the streets and officers converged on them on motorcycles, riding horseback and in riot gear. Meanwhile, police in Honolulu arrested a dozen protesters after organizers of the Occupy Honolulu movement attempted to establish an encampment at a local park. Protesters were seeking donations Sunday to recoup $1,700 in bail money after eight people were arrested during a sit-in at Thomas Square, one of Honolulu’s oldest community parks, a day earlier. Riverside California police arrested 11 people Sunday after a group of about 40 demonstrators formed a human chain to prevent officers from pulling down tents near City Hall.

Sexual Harassment a School Epidemic

It can be a malicious rumor whispered in the hallway, a lewd photo arriving by cellphone, hands groping where they shouldn’t. Added up, it’s an epidemic – student-on-student sexual harassment that is pervasive in America’s middle and high schools. During the 2010-11 school year, 48 percent of students in Grades 7-12 experienced some form of sexual harassment in person or electronically via texting, e-mail or social media, according to a major national survey released Monday by the American Association of University Women. The harassers often thought they were being funny, but the consequences for their targets can be wrenching, according to the survey. Nearly a third of the victims said the harassment made them feel sick to their stomach, affected their study habits or fueled reluctance to go to school at all.

  • The sexual liberation launched in the 1950s has spawned an era of perversion that now extends its evil tentacles down to our youngest and most vulnerable. The liberal media is most at fault.

Most U.S. Unemployed No Longer Receive Benefits

The jobs crisis has left so many people out of work for so long that most of America’s unemployed are no longer receiving unemployment benefits. Early last year, 75 percent of the unemployed were receiving checks. The figure is now 48 percent — a shift that points to a growing crisis of long-term unemployment. Nearly one-third of America’s 14 million unemployed have had no job for a year or more. Congress is expected to decide by year’s end whether to continue providing emergency unemployment benefits for up to 99 weeks in the hardest-hit states.

Consumer Debt Down, Government Debt Up

The sharp rise in federal borrowing is overwhelming efforts of consumers to reduce debt, leaving the economy deeper in debt than when the recession began in December 2007. he substitution of government debt for consumer debt helped end the recession and start a recovery, economists say, but it leaves the nation’s long-term economic health in peril. Households have reduced debt by $549 billion (10.6%) since 2007, mostly by cutting mortgages through defaults and paying down credit cards. During that time, the federal government has added more than $4 trillion in debt, pushing the country’s total borrowing to a record $36.5 trillion. Federal debt has risen from 36.9% of the nation’s gross domestic product when the recession began to 67.5% on Sept. 30.

  • Citizens have done their part, now it’s time to drastically reign in a government out of control

Super Committee to Defy Leadership and Go Big?

As the Super Committee butts against a hard and fast deadline for reducing the deficit, a Republican and a Democratic lawmaker on Sunday say they must be willing to buck their leadership and go big on both cutting spending and adding revenues. Reps. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Heath Shuler, D-N.C., are leading a group of 100 representatives who crafted a letter to the Super Committee calling for all options to be laid on the table in the quest to shave the federal debt. They are urging the panel to go past its mandate of $1.2 trillion over 10 years and find $4 trillion in debt reduction. The Super Committee has until Nov. 23 to come up with its recommendations or face automatic cuts in military and entitlement spending. The congressmen said they may have to subvert their party leaders to get a deal done.

Economic News

The wealth gap between younger and older Americans has stretched to the widest on record, worsened by a prolonged economic downturn that has wiped out job opportunities for young adults and saddled them with housing and college debt. The typical U.S. household headed by a person age 65 or older has a net worth 47 times greater than a household headed by someone under 35, according to an analysis of census data released Monday. This wealth gap is now more than double what it was in 2005 and nearly five times the 10-to-1 disparity a quarter-century ago, after adjusting for inflation.

Any chance that Toyota and Honda would be able to salvage a horrible 2011 appears to have been dashed by Thailand flooding. The two Japanese automakers had been running their Thai plants flat out in order to try to make up for lost production left over from Japan’s earthquake and tsunami in March. Now comes a double dose of bad luck from nature. Plants in Thailand may continue to see significant production delays through December.

Ford, stung by falling quality ratings because of its glitch-prone MyFord Touch system, is planning a major upgrade that it hopes will fix the problems — and repair its own reputation. The current confusing display that will be replaced with a simpler one. Early next year, Ford is sending flash drives with a software upgrade to approximately 250,000 U.S. customers with MyFord Touch systems. Owners can do the upgrade themselves in about 45 minutes, or dealers will do it for free.

Eurozone

In the last few weeks, Italy has become the new focus of the Eurozone debt crisis, as its debts are huge, its growth is slow, and its economy too large to bail out. Investors want the government to quickly pass measures to boost growth and cut debt. The ultimate fear is that Italy might need to ask for an international bailout to handle its enormous ($2.6 trillion) debt. That is too expensive for Europe to do, and could trigger a default that would break up the 17-nation Eurozone and drag down the global economy.

Greece’s prime minister and main opposition leader agreed Sunday to form an interim government to ensure the country’s new European debt deal. Prime Minister George Papandreou agreed to step down halfway through his four-year term The leaders of Greece’s two biggest parties are due to resume talks Monday to agree on who should be the country’s new prime minister, after reaching a historic power-sharing deal to push through a massive financial rescue deal and prevent imminent bankruptcy. Socialist Prime Minister George Papandreou and conservative leader Antonis Samaras are to hold fresh talks to hammer out the composition of the new 15-week government, which will be tasked with passing the $179 billion package from the country’s international creditors before elections.

Middle East

Intelligence provided to the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog agency shows that Iran has mastered the critical steps needed to build a nuclear weapon, The Washington Post reported Sunday. According to the intelligence, Iran appears to have received crucial technical assistance from foreign experts, the newspaper reported, citing Western diplomats and nuclear experts briefed on the findings by the International Atomic Energy Agency The IAEA report is its most detailed yet. The report sees Iran as gearing to developing atomic bombs and is expected to spur Western powers to press for more sanctions on Iran.

Israeli President Shimon Peres warned on Sunday that an attack on Iran is becoming increasingly likely, days before a report by the UN’s nuclear watchdog on Iran’s nuclear program is officially released. “The possibility of a military attack against Iran is now closer to being applied than the application of a diplomatic option,” Peres told the Israel Hayom daily. His comments came after he warned in an interview aired by Israel’s privately-owned Channel Two television on Saturday that an attack on Iran was becoming “more and more likely.” In France meanwhile, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe warned that an attack on Iran would be disastrous. “We have imposed sanctions that continue to expand, we can toughen them to put pressure on Iran,” Juppe told Europe 1 radio. “We will continue on this path because a military intervention could create a situation that completely destabilizes the region,” he said.

Specially trained teams of Hezbollah terrorists have been sent to Iran for logistical training to allow them to use the hundreds of millions of dollars in missiles, rockets, and other weapons Iran has provided to them. They boast of being able to fire ten thousand missiles at pre-selected targets inside Israel in one day. In addition to striking military targets like airfields and bases, they are expected to launch attacks against oil refineries and civilian population centers as well. This planned outbreak of violence could be released at any moment on Iran’s command, but even now rocket and missile attacks on Israel are a daily occurrence—and they are growing ever more frequent.

Libya

Some weapons depots in Libya have still not been secured properly, and “much has already gone missing” from unguarded sites, the top U.N. envoy in Libya said in an interview Sunday. Preventing more weapons from being smuggled out of country will be difficult, considering the nature of the vast desert nation’s borders, the envoy, Ian Martin, said. During the chaos of Libya’s 8-month civil war, human rights groups and reporters came across a number of weapons depots that were left unguarded and were looted after Moammar Gadhafi’s fighters fled. The weapons include shoulder-held missiles, land mines and ammunition. Martin noted progress concerning chemical weapons and nuclear material. Last week, Libyan officials said they discovered two new sites with chemical weapons that had not been declared by the Gadhafi regime when it vowed several years ago to stop pursuing non-conventional weapons. Officials also said they found about 7,000 drums of raw uranium.

Syria

Syrian troops stormed a defiant neighborhood of the embattled city of Homs on Monday, kicking in doors and making arrests after nearly a week of violence pitting soldiers against army defectors and protesters demanding the downfall of President Bashar Assad. More than 110 people have been reported killed in the past week in Homs, a city of about 800,000 that has turned into one of the main centers of protest and reprisal during the nearly 8-month-old revolt against President Bashar Assad. Security forces killed at least six people in central Syria as thousands of anti-government protesters called for the downfall of the Syrian regime Sunday, the first day of the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday. The violence added to fears that a peace plan brokered by the Arab League last week was unraveling only days after Damascus agreed to halt its crackdown on the 7-month old uprising that the U.N. says has left some 3,000 people dead.

Nigeria

Residents fearfully left their homes Saturday to bury their dead in northeast Nigeria following a series of coordinated attacks that killed over 100 people and left a new police headquarters in ruins, government offices burned and symbols of state power destroyed. A radical Muslim sect known locally as Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the attacks in Borno and Yobe states, with the worst damage done in and around the city of Damaturu. The group also promised to continue its bloody sectarian fight against Nigeria’s weak central government, with residents nervously moving through empty streets, waiting for the next attack. After a weekend of violence and fear, U.S. officials warned Sunday that luxury hotels frequented by foreigners and Nigeria’s elite may be bombed by a radical Muslim sect.

Earthquakes  There will be… earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. (Matt 24:7-8)

Oklahomans more accustomed to tornadoes than earthquakes suffered through a weekend of temblors that cracked buildings, buckled a highway and rattled nerves. One quake late Saturday was the state’s strongest ever and was followed early Sunday by a jarring aftershock. The magnitude 5.6 earthquake Saturday night was centered near Sparks, 44 miles northeast of Oklahoma City, and could be felt throughout the state and in Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, northern Texas and some parts of Illinois and Wisconsin. A magnitude 4.7 quake early Saturday was felt from Texas to Missouri.

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 3.2 has rattled part of the San Francisco Bay area. The U.S. Geological Survey says the quake hit at 2:52 p.m. Saturday about three miles southeast of downtown Berkeley. Police hadn’t received any reports of damage or injuries. The quake follows a series of similar-sized temblors that shook the area in recent weeks. Two quakes on Oct. 20 — one with a magnitude of 3.8 and another a magnitude 4.0 — hit the same day that many Californians took part in an annual earthquake preparedness drill.

Weather

The nationwide death toll from flooding in Thailand has climbed past 500, as the polluted black water continues its march through parts of the capital. Three months of intense rainfall have fueled Thailand’s worst flooding in half a century, swamping much of the country since July. The floods have affected more than a third of the country’s provinces, destroying millions of acres of crops and forcing thousands of factories to close.

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