You must pay union fees to get & keep a govt job? Your money supports political views you disagree with. That’s question Supreme Court will answer

You must pay union fees to get & keep a govt job? Your money  spent to  support political views you  fundamentally disagree with? That’s wrong.  This violates your freedom of speech rights.

For example, the SEIU  supported Obama in 2008 & 2012   and supported Hillary Clinton in 2016.   The SEIU pours millions of dollars into the Democrat Party each election cycle.   Why should  union dues you must  pay to keep your job be spent  for  politics you disagree with?

The Supreme Court hears a case on this issue starting Monday, February 26.  This is from the Wall Street Journal:

“Across the U.S., more than 500,000 state and local workers have objected to funding union advocacy but are nonetheless required by law to pay “fair share” fees to labor unions they have refused to join. The Supreme Court upheld the practice in a 1977 case, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, reasoning that otherwise workers could “free ride” on the union’s collective bargaining. Prohibiting unions from charging nonmembers directly for political speech, it believed, would protect their First Amendment rights.

“On Monday the justices will hear oral arguments in a challenge to that 1977 decision brought by Mr. Janus. They should heed Justice Felix Frankfurter’s observation, in an earlier case on mandatory union fees, that it is “rather naive” to assume “that economic and political concerns are separable.” As Mr. Janus argues, bargaining over wages, pensions and benefits in the public sector involves issues of intense public concern and thus core First Amendment-protected speech. A state law that forces public employees to fund that speech violates their rights, no less than compelling them to speak. ( Janus v. Afscme doesn’t consider these questions for unions in the private sector.)

 “Other unions that held pro-Clinton rallies include the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the Service Employees International Union, which represents about one million public workers. The SEIU convention passed a resolution that the union will “elect Hillary Clinton” as president “by mobilizing millions of voters.” Unions and state governments maintain that nonmembers can be charged for these conventions because they are where the unions adopt bargaining strategies and representational policies.
Aptos Psychologist: Stop taking money from government workers’ paychecks.  People are smart and can decide for themselves what politics they want to support.

Freedom from Google’s censorship of ideas? PragerU hopes so … See PragerU’s video on War on Boys…

Google censors ideas it dislikes – which include videos put out by PragerU.

Infringing on free speech seems to be a growth business. The latest twist comes in complaints that Google and its YouTube subsidiary—which thoroughly dominate public circulation of videos on the Internet—are arbitrarily and unfairly making it harder for viewers to find and experience some viewpoints than others.

Educational charities like PragerU have recently gotten good at producing short videos that educate the public on policy and current-affairs issues. Many of PragerU’s five-minute productions—on topics like “Why Did America Fight the Korean War?,” “Is the Death Penalty Ever Moral?,” “What’s Wrong With E-Cigarettes?,” and “Are the Police Racist?”—have been viewed a million or more times online. Since its inception as a 501c3 producer, PragerU videos have been watched a total of 998 million times, and 70 percent of viewers say they have changed their mind on an important issue after taking in PragerU content.


Now PragerU has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Ninth Circuit federal court, alleging that the nonprofit’s content has been discriminated against since Summer 2016 because of its (center-right) political identity. The plaintiff says this happens in two ways.

“Demonetizing” a video means that Google won’t place ads on your video’s viewing page, resulting in loss of the revenue stream that other videos enjoy. Google says it does this because content is too extreme, hateful, graphic, or controversial.

“Restricting” a video prevents it from appearing on the computers of families, libraries, schools, universities, and employers that have turned on Google’s “Restricted Mode” setting to block nudity, profanity, gratuitous violence, and other unsafe content.


Aptos Psychologist: Sign up for PragerU’s videos?  Tell Google to ‘stuff it’?  Yes – let’s protect freedom of speech …


who receives the Body & Blood? Who can vote? Aptos CA Catholics & Episcopalians tighten their rules — very differently

rules tighten differently  at Episcopalian & Catholic churches in Aptos, CA

Aptos CA Catholics and Episcopalians tighten  their rules — in quite different ways.

  Episcopalians pay to pray before voting:

The laying on of hands by an Episcopalian bishop  and the payment of identifiable  money to the church are two of a number of   requirements for members  at St. John’s in Aptos, CA who want to vote Dec. 10, 2017.

  The Rector, Mother Tracy, writes in an email 12/07/2017  that  in order to be “technically” an Episcopalian,   sometime in the past an Episcopalian bishop laid hands in a church service  on the person.   All  who meet various  requirements can vote Dec. 10 for elections to the church board.

Aptos Catholic  christians also tighten their rules:  The last to receive will be first now. Different housekeeping rules will  be  enforced at  Resurrection Catholic Community. The order of who gets served  first is one change.

  Remember  the bible verse,    “The  last will be first —  and the first will be last”? [Matthew 20:16] It’s an apt summary.

   The Eucharistic Ministers at  Resurrection Catholic Community   who assist with the service  — these people  who used to be the  last persons  to receive — will now be first persons   to receive.   Each Eucharistic Minister will  receive from the  Catholic priest prior to   serving others.

It was stated that this is an “old”  Catholic rule  — one of many “shoulds” that need to  be done — that  now  goes into effect at Resurrection Catholic Community in Aptos, CA.    Further,   the tender  care with which any remaining Body and Blood is handled after everyone has received, those rules are tightened.

 So — are there any  Aptos Catholic christians who want to receive directly from their priest?   Ask to serve and be trained  as an Eucharistic Minister. The last to receive will now be first to receive at Resurrection Catholic Community in Aptos.

 At St. John’s episcopal church all attendees standing in a circle  receive the Body from the priest and then they receive the  Blood from an assisting Eucharistic Minister.

Of most importance is participation as the Body of Christ.  All are welcome at St. John’s episcopal and Resurrection catholic community.

Below are photos taken 12/10 on Voting Day at St. John’s episcopal. Great coffee! 

written by Cameron Jackson

Monerey Bay Forum

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Speak up about what you know? On Monterey Bay Fourm write about freedom & what you love


write about freedom and what you know

Can you write? Know something about freedom?   Know  something about Santa Cruz or Monterey?  You are welcome to join Monterey Bay Forum and write what you think about what you love and know.

cultural warfare issues about Moore underlie letter by 50 Alabama pastors?

Cultural warfare  issues  going on?    Of note, roughly 2/3  of the  50  Alabama pastors signing the letter opposing Moore are United Methodist (22)  and Episcopalian (8).

Whether same sex marriage is OK is a  a major  issue dividing conservative and progressive United Methodists.  Many Episcopalian churches typically  are on ‘the cutting edge’ of cultural warfare issues.  Both of these  denominations are losing members year after year in the U.S. while their  numbers increase in other parts of the world  which do not support same sex marriage.

Another cultural warfare issue is possible sharia/  Muslim influence on U.S.  legal institutions.   Moore has made many controversial statements, i.e. that the influence of sharia law is growing  in the U.S. and that Ellison   should not serve in Congress related to donations he has received  and comments that he  has made.

Here’s the letter that the Alabama pastors   signed — should you want to sign it.

“Under ordinary circumstances, we clergy refrain from speaking directly about political candidates, and only speak to issues. But these are not ordinary circumstances.

“Even before the recent allegations of sexual abuse, Roy Moore demonstrated that his extremist values and actions are not consistent with traditional Christian values or good Christian character. He and politicians like him have cynically used Christianity for their own goals. But Roy Moore does not speak for Christianity, and he acts in ways that are contrary to our faith.

“Christianity affirms God’s love for the neighbor and care for the most vulnerable in society: the widow, the foreigner, and the orphan. But he has denigrated people from other countries and other faiths. He seeks to deny the most basic civil rights of our fellow citizens. He has used racial slurs and casually referred to state-sponsored violence against lesbian and gay families. He has sought to deny children without parents access to loving families on the basis of sexual orientation. Kindness and justice toward widows, orphans, and foreigners are priorities in the Bible but they are not priorities for him.

“Christianity thrives in religious freedom from government interference, and a government impartial toward people of all faith traditions. But instead he has sought to entangle government with religion. He has preached vehemently against Islamic religious law but he has sought government affirmation of his religious extremism and nationalism. He has claimed civil rights only apply to Christians.

Christianity rejoices in the truth and affirms the rights of abuse survivors to tell their stories without silencing. Christianity abhors sexual coercion and violence. We acknowledge that many people have been victims of sexual assault and abuse in our own places of worship. Clergy misconduct has done real and lasting harm, both physically and spiritually. We repudiate the actions of religious and political leaders like Roy Moore who have sought to silence, to cover up, and to be complicit in the sexual abuse. These actions reopen the wounds of anyone who has been abused by leaders who should have been committed to compassion, to justice, and to healing God’s world.

Why is this important?

We clergy write and sign this letter not as representatives of our own congregations but as individual faith leaders compelled by conscience to speak.

Our intent is not to tell anyone how to vote, but to urge the people of Alabama to vote their conscience, regardless of political affiliation. Roy Moore has done harm to our government; he has done harm to our Christian witness, and he has done harm to vulnerable people.

We do not make this statement lightly. We do so with much prayer and discernment. We believe no follower of Jesus Christ should be silent while the words of our Lord and Savior are perverted for partisan power, while our Bible is appropriated as a weapon for a false “culture war,” and while the name of our God is blasphemed by the hypocrisy of those who claim the name of Christ


Dr. Dave Barnhart, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev Angie Wright, United Church of Christ, Birmingham
Rev. Matt Lacey, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Jennifer Sanders, United Church of Christ, Birmingham
Rev. Ramone R. Billingsley, Baptist, Birmingham
Rev. Cat Goodrich, Presbyterian Church (USA), Birmingham
Minister Cara McClure, Non Denominational, Birmingham
Rev. Jaime Pangman, United Methodist, Cullman
Rev. Eva R. Melton, Baptist, Birmingham
The Rev Tyler C Richards, Episcopalian, Birmingham
Rev. Laura Stephens-Reed, Baptist, Northport
Rev. Sally G. Harris, Lutheran ( ELCA), Bessemer
Rev. Wayne McLaughlin, Presbyterian, Homewood
Rev. Matt Reed, United Methodist, Northport
Rev. Emily Freeman Penfield, United Methodist, Birmingham
The Rev. Kelley Hudlow, Deacon, Episcopal Church, Birmingham
Pastor Adam Mixon, Baptist, Birmingham
Rev. Eric Hall, Baptist, Birmingham
Rev. Carolyn Foster, Episcopal, Birmingham
Rev. Raul Dominguez, United Methodist, Cullman
Rev. R.G. Wilson-Lyons, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Dr. R. Lawton Higgs Sr., United Methodist, Hueytown
Rev. E. Tramaine Solomon, Baptist, Lineville
Rev Steven W. Barber, United Methodist, Haleyville
Rev. Paul Eknes-Tucker, United Church of Christ, Birmingham
Rev. Sonya Gravlee, United Church of Christ, Trussville
Rev. Daniel Stallings, Baptist, Montevallo
Rev. Malcolm Marler, Episcopal, Birmingham
The Reverend Pamela A. Canzater, United Church of Christ, Birmingham
Rev. Horace Blount, United Methodist, Birmingham
Bishop Antwon B. Womack, Non-Demonational, Birmingham
Rev. Charles Perry, Unity, Birmingham
Rev. Dollie Howell Pankey, Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Birmingham
Joe Elmore, United Methodist, Vestavia Hills
Rev Bud Precise, United Methodist/United Church of Christ, Birmingham
Herb Williamson, United Methodist, Bagley
The Rev. Louie Skipper, Episcopal Church, Hoover
Dr. Everett B. Kelley, Baptist, Lincoln
Dr. Kevin Higgs, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Stephanie York Arnold, United Methodist, Birmingham
The Rev. Tom Duley, United Methodist, Vestavia Hills
John Gregory, Chaplain, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Leeds
Pastor Marcus Singleton, United Methodist Church, Huntsville
Rev. Katy Smith, Episcopal Church, Birmingham
Rev. Tommy Morgan, Christian Church (DOC), Alabaster
Rev. Joe Genau, Presbyterian Church (USA), Homewood
Ava Rozelle, Associate Pastor, United Methodist, Pell City
The Reverend Lawrence Willson, PhD, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Thomas Osborne, Episcopal, Florence
Rev. Elizabeth Cole Goodrich, Presbyterian, Birmingham
The Rev. Mikah Hudson, United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Baxter Chism United Methodist, Pinson
Carolyn Garner, Christian, Philadelphia
Rev. Deborah Gibson, Epley United Methodist, Birmingham
Rev. Lydia Casey, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Birmingham
Rev. Dale Capron, United Methodist, Gurley
Rev. J. Shannon Webster, Presbyterian, Birmingham
Shelaine Bird, Presbyterian (USA), Mountain Brook
Rev. Cathy C. Hoop, Presbyterian Church (USA), Tuscaloosa
Rev. Doreen McGoldrick Duley, United Methodist, Vestavia
Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, Pastor, Greenleaf Christian Church; President & Sr. Lecturer, Repairers of the Breach; National Co-Chair, Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call For Moral Revival
Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis, Co-Director, the Kairos Center for Religion, Rights, and Social Justice; National Co-Chair, Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call For Moral Revival


Comments:   About cultural warfare issues:   Why not call a spade a spade.   Let’s ask that these 50   progressive pastors  — and others who oppose Moore based on these issues —  state up front where they stand  on  cultural warfare issues.  One of the hot issues of the 2016 elections was amnesty versus control of U.S. borders.

For progressive pastors,  does  the Biblical  ‘care for the  stranger’ standard  translate into support for  ‘open borders’ and sanctuary protection  for all those  who somehow can  get in?

Instead of support for open borders, why not do what America can so people elsewhere have the freedoms that are available here.     Cameron Jackson

Man overboard! opps, person overboard? Or,’he-she’ fell overboard? Lord only knows what’s next

Man overboard? name of  God the Father overboard?

Man overboard?   Name of God the  Father goes overboard? Oh Lord, what’s next!

The Church of Sweden now encourages  its clergy to use the gender-neutral term “God” .  And they suggest that clergy stop referring to the deity as “he” or “the Lord”.

The decision was made on Thursday, wrapping up an eight-day meeting of the church’s 251-member decision-making body. The decision will take effect on May 20 during Pentecost.

It is the latest move by the national Evangelical Lutheran church to modernise its 31-year-old handbook setting out how services should be conducted.

Opps   — which of the following  might you have mistakenly  used this past year? Which other ones do you want to add to the list?

                                            Gender-neutral terms —

Garbage man …  how about  garbage truck driver?

Man hole …  person cover hole? 

Forefathers – ancestors, forebears   ….   how about our ‘foremothers’ begot  …?

Gentleman’s agreement – unwritten agreement, agreement based on trust …. three women splitting a lunch bill ?  

Girls (for adults) – women

Housewife – shopper, consumer, homemaker (depends on context)  …   shall we use, he is such a good house-husband?

Manpower – human resources, labour force, staff, personnel, workers, workforce

Man or mankind – humanity, humankind, human race, people

Man-made – artificial, manufactured, synthetic

Man in the street, common man – average/ordinary/typical citizen/person

Right-hand man – chief assistant

Sportsmanship – fairmess, good humour, sense of fair play

Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Guide to Inclusive Language


Comment:   Is this more political correctness than we need?  Fathers are different than mothers.  Thank God  for that!    And children need fathers in the home and in their lives.  So what say you?     Cameron Jackson

Episcopal church a haven of hope for abused Catholic priest

Former  Catholic priest Fr. Ryan, abused by his mentor and family priest Father Lott,    finds   haven of hope through an Episcopal church in Albany, New York.

Victim-survivors want most of all to be listened to, believed and to hear ‘I’m sorry’ so says Ms Buros with The Independent Reconciliation and Compensation program. These men now 50 and 60 years old  are still crying when they speak of their  abuses says Ms Burros

Twenty years a Catholic  priest,  Steven Ryan-Vutto  left the priesthood  questioning his vocation because of  long term  sexual abuse he had experienced by his mentor and family priest.

He had to speak out as ‘it is something I had to do from the deepest core of my being.’   “I truly  believe  that although it’s going to sully the name of someone a lot of people look up to, it’s truthful… the truth will set you free.’

Abused from the age of 14 by his parish priest — acts of fondling and  sodomy — Steven Ryan-Vuotto  joined the priesthood.  Known as Father Ryan for 20 years, he recently spoke out against his abuser,

Rev. Robert V. Lott   who died in 2002 at the age of 63.  In the early 1990’s Steven Ryan-Vuotto confronted Rev. Lott as part of his therapy.



Cameron Jackson

The above is based on an  article in the New York Times, Monday, Oct. 30, 2017

video game lights replace candles in Aptos, CA catholic church


plastic candles

Video game plastic  lights replace  candles in an Aptos, CA catholic  church.

Will the pastoral candle be next?  How about recyclable  plastic wafers?

When heat is applied to a wick contained in wax a candle lights.  It emits smoke, light and heat.  The smoke rises to the heavens….symbolizing early sacrifices to God.

To replace candles with what amounts to a cheap video game ….  one wonders why?  Bean counters?  Cost? Saving money?

What to do:  Let the congregation decide.  Put the candles next to the video game lights and allow people to vote.

Ask people:   Do you want to punch a plastic button or light a candle?

The printing press solves problems — when you can’t understand your priest or the readers….


Pope Francis greets the crowd at the end of a weekly general audience at St Peter’s square.

What to do?   You can’t understand a word your  priest says? Or you can’t hear what the Readers of the Bible said?   

These problems matter.   Some people may stop attending your church. Or revenue may drop.

Face the problem directly.   There are simple solutions!

Use the printing press.  Print the Readings — so if the Reader cannot use a microphone properly  people in the pew  can still hear the message.  They can read it.

And print the sermon.  Yes I know that’s not done.  But it’s time to do it.     If your priest speaks a form of English that is hard to understand — put the sermon (or a short version of it) in the bulletin.  That way people can read the sermon then or later on.

Yes there is a growing problem of people in the pew not able to understand what the priest or readers say.

This is adapted from an article in the  Wall Street Journal titled   I Can’t Understand a Word My Priest Says  written by Marty Sherry, Oct. 05, 2017:

Today around a quarter of Catholic diocesan priests were born outside the U.S., and about 30% of priests ordained in America last year were foreign-born. Why and how did they come?  Some came after learning English as the language of commerce in their native land.  Many see opportunities for ministry in the U.S.  Some come as political refugees. Others find salaries are higher here, enabling them to send money home to support their families.  Still others find that life in the U.S. is just more comfortable.  Most see the U.S. as spiritually  needy — so privledged that its people no longer crave sacramental care.

Can’t understand the priest?   The Readers mumble or cannot use a microphone properly?  Solution:    The printing press!   Many Protestant churches routinely  print the Readings  — that way if a person is hard of hearing or the person reading does not speak clearly the congregation can still ‘read along’ and get the message.

Churches typically do not print the Sermon and include it as part of the Bulletin.  Why not do so?

Let people think about what was said on Sunday.  And for those who cannot understand the accent of the male or female  priest —  or just can’t follow along because of  the length  — there’s hope!  Use the copy  machine.  

written by Cameron Jackson