Newsletter #63 – Tennessee’s Freedom Forum – Part IPosted: February 4, 2013
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This multi-part report examines the Freedom Forum and some of the “experts” representing the Forum’s programs, in particular Charles Haynes who heads the Religious Freedom Education Project. The report will also look at the Freedom Forum’s contribution to and endorsement of pro-Islamist media bias typically displayed in The Tennessean and other news sources.
Most importantly, the report will expose the hypocrisy of the Freedom Forum’s commitment to First Amendment freedoms and their unwavering promotion and support for the Islamist agenda in the U.S.
Knowing more about the Freedom Forum, its objectives and its partners is important for several reasons including the fact that they will be expanding their trainings in Tennessee public schools and convening more events like this one.
The Freedom Forum – the parent organization and its programs
The Freedom Forum is a non-profit foundation “that champions the First Amendment as a cornerstone of democracy.” It serves as the primary funding source for its three programs – The First Amendment Center and the Diversity Institute, both housed at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, and The Newseum in Washington, D.C.. The Newseum in turn supports the Religious Freedom Education Project directed by Charles Haynes who is also listed on the First Amendment Center’s website as one of its experts.
The First Amendment Center (the Center), was founded by Nashville native and former Tennessean newspaper journalist, editor, publisher and Board chairman, John Siegenthaler. The Center is a self-ordained voice of authority on First Amendment freedoms including free speech, press, religion, the right to assembly and to petition the government. Its website lays claim to being “one of the most authoritative sources of news, information and commentary in the nation on First Amendment issues.”
The Center states it is “non-partisan” but as will be shown, this in no way means that the Center is “non-biased.”
While the Freedom Forum initially pursued many goals with a focus on domestic and international free press, investigative journalist Russ Baker revealed a pattern of “self-serving generosity” by the Freedom Forum’s principals that ultimately caused a severe contraction and narrowing of the Freedom Forum’s operations and focus.
Baker alleges that investment ups and downs along with spending excesses of the Freedom Forum’s operators, changed programming priorities to enable Newseum, (described as the Forum’s “jewel”), to proceed. The Newseum is a museum about journalism, but with the addition of the Religious Freedom Education Project (the Project), it has in reality, become much more. To some extent, the Project has become a ever-ready abettor of the Islamist agenda in the U.S.
The Freedom Forum – doing their part to redefine our freedoms
The principals, individuals and organizations with whom the Freedom Forum collaborates, follow virtually in lockstep Recommendation 8 in the March 2010 report issued by President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships dictating “Inter-Religious Cooperation”:
“Utilize the expertise of faith – and community – based organizations to train education and media
professionals on Islam and Muslim communities.”
Out of 11 total recommendations in this report, 3 of them specifically address Muslims, with Islam being the only religion mentioned at all and included under its own heading “Engaging Muslim Communities”.
Perhaps the most ironic statement contained in the Recommendation include:
“….studies have shown what Muslims around the world most want from the West in order to improve relations – to be respected as equals.”
“We believe that citizen education – initiated and implemented by citizens –is the first step to engagement….Where American faith-based and community groups can best contribute is by educating their own constituents. The majority of Americans say they know little or nothing about Islam.”
Black letter Islamic doctrine is based on the Muslim “believer” and the kaffir “non-believer” each with different rights, – kind of a barrier to “respect as equals” and any education provided to Americans about Islam must parrot the scripts approved by government and media bureaucrats and groups like CAIR; any deviation will be labeled hate speech and evidence of Islamophobia.
Read the report for yourself – http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/microsites/ofbnp-council-final-report.pdf
Regardless of today’s Islamist propaganda, even if marketed under the moniker “American Muslim”, any and all assertions about Islam and/or the Quran being compatible with or having inspired First Amendment freedoms or the founding principles of this country, can never disguise Islam enough to make it the solution for any society that values individual rights and freedoms.
 “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.”