On January 13, 1984, then-President Ronald Reagan issued a proclamation for the first National Sanctity of Human Life Sunday. He concluded his official statement with these words:22, 1984, as National Sanctity of Human Life Day. I call upon the citizens of this blessed land to gather on that day in homes and places of worship to give thanks for the gift of life, and to reaffirm our commitment to the dignity of every human being and the sanctity of each human life.” Thirty-eight years later churches and pro-life citizens continue to observe the National Sanctity of human Life Day. More significantly, almost 50 years following Roe v. Wade, we are closer to seeing this dastardly ruling overturned than we ever have been. That is why this year churches may observe the National Sanctity of Human Life Day on the traditional 3rd Sunday of the month — January 16 — or the 4th — January 23 — which is exactly one day after the anniversary of the life-taking ruling of Roe v. Wade, on January 22, 1973. Perhaps this year more than any other we need Christians and our Bible-believing churches observing Sanctity of Human Life Day, with preaching and teaching that clearly proclaims that God has created and designed human life and praying that the scourge of abortion will be ended and challenging us to do our own sanctity of human life proclamations to our families, our neighbors, to all in our sphere of influence. Such proclamations may not be presidential, but they will be very powerful. Read Ronald Regan’s complete speech HERE. Listen to Julaine Appling’s complete commentary on the National Sanctity of Human Life Day HERE or read it HERE.“I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Sunday, January
BY SISI ROOSE
On July 21 the Senate Armed Services Committee approved legislation that we consider unacceptable because it would amend the Military Selective Service Act (MSSA) to require young women to register with Selective Service for a possible future draft.
We believe this legislation is not only unacceptable but also unnecessary for three reasons. First of all, there are enough male citizens in the United States to more than double the U.S. Armed Forces. Secondly, data overwhelmingly shows that the most effective units are male units, not coed units. And third, subjecting women to the same draft as men does not promote equality.
Before we go further you should know that two of my close female friends serve in the military. I am beyond proud of them and grateful for their service. I realize that they willingly and regularly put themselves through things that I never want to experience so that they are effectively equipped to protect my freedom. This is their voluntary choice.
In my opinion, they are nothing short of inspiring.
That being said, there is a significant difference between appreciating the service of my female friends who voluntarily joined the military and requiring women to join the military. With the rest of this post I hope to clarify why our nation is better served by rejecting this amendment requiring women to register for the draft.
America Has Enough Able-Bodied Men to Fill a Draft
According to the Family Research Council America has enough able-bodied men to double the size of our Armed Forces by requiring only 2.5% of the male population to serve.
“If our armed services needed to be more than doubled to five million (and we maintained the current 16.5 percent of service members who are female), that would only require roughly 2.5 percent of the male population to serve. Since approximately 1.1 percent of the male population is currently serving, this means that only an additional 1.4 percent would be needed.”
One of the most significant reasons that women should not be required to enlist ahead of able-bodied men is that it slows down the drafting process when we need able-bodies the most.
According to a letter called Special Message To The 117th Congress: Don’t Draft Our Daughters that Wisconsin Family Action president, Julaine Appling, signed, the U.S. Supreme Court, “has recognized, the purpose of a draft is not to fill various noncombat billets, it is to quickly provide qualified replacements for combat casualties.”
In other words, a draft is initiated to quickly put capable bodies on the battlefield. Data shows that requiring women to register for the draft would actually slow down the drafting process; therefore, coming in direct conflict with the purpose of a draft.
A study conducted by Naval Health Research found that most men can pass the combat arms standards while most women can’t. In this same letter Carrie Lukas and Jennifer C. Braceras pointed out that this natural difference between men and women would severely and detrimentally slow the drafting process.
“‘Gender-neutral’ call-ups of both men and women would jam the induction pipeline and slow mobilization at the worst possible time – when our soldiers are fighting and dying on the battlefield.”
In the end, drafting women is unnecessary. The United States has enough able-bodied male citizens to more than double our armed forces while only calling on 2.5% of the male population. Furthermore, drafting women would be a time-consuming detriment to our national security and those already on the front lines.
Male Units are the Most Effective Units
In Women Should Not Be Drafted into Selective Service Family Research Council reported on a study performed by the U.S. Marine Corps from April 2012 through August 2015 to test the hypothesis that men and women could perform equally well in all-male and co-ed units. Of the participants in this test, the men had average capabilities, while the women were above-average graduates of infantry training.
FRC’s summary of the collected data explained that all-male teams outperformed co-ed units in 69 percent of ground combat tasks and sex-related physical differences negatively affected co-ed units’ performance.
“In tasks resembling requirements of infantry, armor, and artillery units, all-male teams outperformed co-ed units in 69 percent of ground combat tasks. … Sex-related physical differences negatively affected co-ed units’ speed and effectiveness in simulated battle tasks, including marching under heavy loads, casualty evacuations, and marksmanship.”
Besides having lower performance, coed units also require accommodations that are not needed for an all-male unit. Mary Beth Waddell, J.D., writing for Family Research Council, said that these concerns take away from the Armed Forces singular focus needed on the battlefield.
“Co-ed units would either require special privacy concerns to be accommodated in the most austere of circumstances or sacrifice the privacy needs of servicemen and women. In addition, coed units can contribute to increased levels of sexual trauma and rape. These considerations hinder the singular focus that is needed on the battlefield to defeat the enemy.”
If the goal of the United States Armed Forces is to effectively defend and protect the freedom and rights of the American people on the battlefield drafting women compromises that goal.
Drafting Women Does not Establish Equality
The government’s attempt at promoting equality by requiring women to register for the draft is anything but that. Research shows that because so many women do not naturally meet the physical standards required such tests are “dumbed-down.”
“Officials have adjusted test requirements and scoring systems to reduce initial failure rates (84% for women, 30% for men), but equivocal ‘percentile’ scoring systems still will not disguise immutable physical disparities that the battlefield will expose without mercy.”
In other words, when the lives of women and those they serve alongside as well as our freedoms are on the line is not the time to blur readiness standards. A scoring system may make allowances but carrying a 45-pound ruck-sack through the desert and facing enemy fire will offer no leniency.
Equality is not achieved by creating two sets of standards.
Furthermore, Lukas and Braceras point out that requiring women to register for draft is not “equal” because “women in uniform suffer unequal rates of health problems, including infertility and higher risks of suicide.”
A woman’s equality and worth are not established by subjecting her to the same draft as men, instead, it places women, the individuals they serve alongside and our freedoms in greater danger.
What This Means for YOU
In conclusion we want to re-iterate that we are grateful and inspired by the patriotic women who sacrifice so much to protect the values we hold dear. However, voluntary service is quite different from required service which would compromise the effectiveness of our armed forces.
Throughout every national emergency women have been quick to volunteer and support our armed forces. Why would we assume that women would not do so again by requiring them to register for the draft?
Moving forward it is critically important that we, as citizens, do these three things:
- Stay informed. If we do not know what legislation is proposed we will not be able to tell our representatives what we do and do not want. Furthermore, if we do not stay informed with the way our representatives vote, we will not be able to elect representatives who serve us well.
- Communicate your desires. Staying informed empowers us to advocate for what we do and do not want. Call, email or visit your legislator; let them know what issues you care about and how you hope they will vote on them.
- Raise engaged daughters. There are countless stories in the Bible of women who diligently sought God, were full of courage and stood up for what they believed in. Their actions powerfully and positively impacted the lives of many. They weren’t drafted into the military, but that didn’t stop them from protecting and providing for what they valued. Those are the kinds of daughters we need!
We are thankful for organizations like Family Research Council and Independent Women’s Forum for their thorough research and communication. You can support further educational materials created by Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council by investing HERE.
Four Resources for Responding to Employers Mandating the COVID Vaccine (or making it a condition of employment)
*Updated September 20, 2021
As the COVID numbers seem to be rising and government, business and employers respond, we have received more and more inquiries from people whose jobs are at least potentially being impacted by COVID vaccine mandates.
Below represents the best knowledge and resource recommendations we have at this time regarding employers and the vaccine.
NOTE: We are not attorneys. We are relying on the best legal advice we have as we give the following, but it does NOT constitute legal guidance on this issue.
WFA’s Organizational Position on Vaccines (including COVID vaccines)
We do not take a position on whether anyone should take any vaccine. We believe that is a personal matter. That said, we firmly believe in and have acted numerous times to protect the right of people to make their own decision about any vaccine.
We believe vaccinations are a personal and medical freedom that must be maintained. We also believe that any vaccine that has used tissues or cells from aborted babies comes with major concerns for anyone who is pro-life.
Wisconsin’s Current Vaccine Laws and Exemptions
Wisconsin law provides for three exemptions for vaccines; however, these exemptions apply — as written in the state statutes (252.04(3)) — to parents making decisions about vaccinations for their children going to school. The three exemptions are health, religion or personal conviction.
The question is, will the courts uphold the exemptions in situations that are not about parents exempting their children from vaccinations required for school? Right now, we just don’t know.
What Resources Do We Offer?
The following are resources from four organizations, three of which are legal groups, that we respect and have shared information regarding employees invoking a religious exemption for the COVID vaccine.
RESOURCE ONE: Alliance Defending Freedom
We highly recommend you begin by reading this article from Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), one of our frontline partners: “Summary Guidance for Religious Accommodations and Exemptions from COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates” The included FAQ section is also quite beneficial.
On ADF’s Facebook page you can read this helpful summary titled, “Can You Get a Religious Exemption from a COVID Vaccine Mandate?”
In essence, ADF recommends if you run into a problem with your employer that you engage a lawyer and ask the lawyer to contact ADF directly for more specific legal information and help.
Liberty Counsel Action has a page that is filled with current information about the COVID vaccine in general.
RESOURCE THREE: The Rutherford Institute
The Rutherford Institute (RI) has been around since 1982 focused on civil liberties and human rights. RI has supplied more specific details than ADF on this employment vaccination issue, including a model letter.
**NEW! RESOURCE FOUR: Family Research Council’s “PrayVoteStand”
Family Research Council (FRC) is one of Wisconsin Family Action’s frontline national partners. FRC recently launched a new program, PrayVoteStand, that includes some additional resources on the vaccine mandate issue. Those resources are available HERE.
Family Research Council has also shared this advice from Alliance Defending Freedom.
We hope the above is helpful. Please let us know if we can be of further help — and feel free to share this information with others.
What we have given is certainly not exhaustive, but we consider these to be reputable organizations offering reliable legal guidance on this important issue. We offer this out of a sincere desire to assist those who are in the terribly difficult position of having to choose between having a job or getting the vaccine.
LEAD Wisconsin was a dream carried in Julaine Appling’s heart for well over a decade. As she poured her heart and soul into defending God’s plan for marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin through WFA and WFC, she knew it was her God-given responsibility to someday intentionally equip the next generation to do the same.
In 2019, with the hiring of SharaLee Nichols as the LEAD WI director, Julaine’s heart-cry to invest in the youth of Wisconsin came into focus. SharaLee not only had a background in event planning, but she also had previous experience working with a faith-based civics program for youth and most importantly a fervent desire to see the young men and women of Wisconsin become effective godly leaders who engage the culture from a biblical perspective.
Together, with the support of the WFA and WFC staff, Julaine and SharaLee researched, booked speakers, gathered registrations, developed policies, raised money and prayed. Finally all those years of persistent prayer and extraordinary effort culminated in LEAD Wisconsin this summer, August 1-6, on the campus of Maranatha Baptist University in Watertown.
For six days 80 youth experienced what camper Josiah Scott called, “one of the best weeks of my year,” where they learned principles of a Christian worldview, public speaking skills and how a bill becomes a law. They also played tons of volleyball, ate some great meals and visited the capitol — twice!
Throughout the rest of this post, we’re going to discuss a few of the speakers who joined us, recap our legislative journey and highlight a few extra-circular activities from the week. So, keep reading!!
Of the many goals we had for LEAD Wisconsin, the one that out-ranked them all was for each camper to have a personal and active relationship with Jesus Christ. We realize (and take very seriously) that just because you grow up in a Christian home doesn’t mean you have a personal relationship with Christ. We are also critically aware that without this foundational and transformational relationship with the one true God anything good someone attempts will be empty and fall short of eternity.
With this in mind, we didn’t just invite good speakers, we invited speakers who were believers and whose messages would be seasoned with God’s truth.
Carl Kerby, founder of Reasons for Hope and deBUNKED, spent three days captivating the campers’ attention with humor and unapologetic apologetics videos hurled at breakneck speed. In his sessions campers learned that there is absolute truth, how media affects our culture and stand up for the hope that Christ has given us.
Having the founder of Turning Point USA, Charlie Kirk, join us was especially exciting. His presence was made possible by friends of our ministry who know Charlie. Charlie built on a short presentation on Biblical leadership given by Bob Vander Plaats, Julaine’s counterpart in Iowa. After his session he stayed for a meet-and-greet to take photos with the campers. (We think pretty much every camper had his/her pic taken with Charlie! Watch the time-lapse HERE.)
Toni McFadden, the founder of Relationships Matter, shared her personal experience with abortion and how she now advocates against abortion through sharing her story and talking about why relationships matter. Not only were Toni’s sessions heart-felt, powerful and full of truth, but she was also eager to interact with the campers. She lingered before and after her sessions, as well as during meals, so that campers could ask her questions or chat!
These speakers (and all the others such as former WI Supreme Court Justice Dan Kelly and former WI Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch) were a powerful facet of LEAD Wisconsin and shared an incredible amount of truth and insight.
Campers began their legislative journey for the week shortly after dropping their luggage off in their rooms Sunday evening. With one hand on the Bible and the other raised, they were sworn in as representatives. They met in assigned groups called a caucus throughout the week to discuss and create arguments for and against assigned bills.
All 10 bills discussed were real bills from the Wisconsin State legislature, one of which is now law.
On Wednesday, in the Wisconsin State Capitol building our teen representatives held their own public hearings, complete with lobbyists who presented statements in support of or in opposition to the bills. The teen representatives then asked the lobbyists and their own committee members questions about the bills. These hearings were presided over by state legislators, and many were attended by professional lobbyists.
The final day of camp found us in the Capitol again only this time we were on the floor of the State Assembly — this time to present and vote on their bills! Each camper addressed the body with a prepared speech advocating for their bill. (Watch the live replay HERE!)
We believe the mock legislature campers navigated throughout LEAD Wisconsin was important for them to better understand how government really works and to see how constituents have a say in the laws that are passed. We look forward to the day a camper will attend a real public hearing and advocate for their desires and rights where proposed laws are concerned—or maybe one day we might have one of our LEAD WI alumni elected to the state legislature!
Extra-Curricular Activities: Feats of Strength + Prayer Night
We couldn’t have six days without some fun competitive games and intentional prayer, could we? Of course not!
On Tuesday we had what we called “Feats of Strength.” Feats of Strength included three stations: relay races, minute-to-win-it and Micah’s station. Campers were divided into teams and took on the challenges together, including competing for taking the coolest team photo!
Points were calculated and at the end of the week three teams were awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze medals carefully and diligently created by the LEAD Wisconsin crew and put on the winners by Olympic Champion Ben Peterson who also spent the week with us!
On Thursday night, Dave Gerry, owner of the Princeton Clubs, shared his story of following God and being an ambassador for Christ in the business sector. After his session Dave challenged the campers by asking them if they were building their own kingdoms or Christ’s. Then he invited campers to surrender their lives to Christ. Many campers joined each other at the front of the room to pray with Dave, a staff member and each other.
And the highlight of the week? Three campers gave their lives to Jesus for the first time! That right there made all the work, all the time, all the expense worth it.
We had a blast playing games on Tuesday, but it was the privilege of a lifetime to witness the work God did in so many campers hearts Thursday night. Yes, we prayed for Him to move in powerful ways, but we know what happened that night was because of God’s goodness and for His glory. We are humbled and rejoice that God found fit to make Himself real to campers at LEAD Wisconsin!
LEAD Wisconsin and YOU
Prayer, perseverance, and investors — that’s what made LEAD Wisconsin 2021 and everything that happened in those six days possible. As we look back on what God has done so that we can look forward to LEAD Wisconsin 2022, we would like to invite you to join us in one of four ways:
- Prayer. Please pray that what the teens who attended LEAD Wisconsin in 2021 learned would impact the rest of their lives for God’s glory. Pray for the staff as we recover, that God would renew our energy, health, and vision to breathe life into LEAD Wisconsin 2022. Lastly please pray that the Lord would show us which speakers to invite for LEAD Wisconsin 2022 and prepare the hearts of each camper to receive what God has for them.
- Financially investing. There’s no way around this — hosting LEAD Wisconsin is expensive. The registration fee each camper pays covers only half of what it actually costs for them to experience this week. Additionally, many campers attend because we can offer financial assistance, including full scholarships. When you give to Wisconsin Family Council, you are making it possible for us to equip youth, through LEAD Wisconsin, to become effecting godly leaders who engage the culture from a Biblical worldview.
- Spread the word. By God’s grace WFC’s LEAD WI is creating positive change in the lives of the campers who attended, and we don’t want anyone who needs this program to miss it in 2022. If you know of a church, youth group or homeschool co-op that would be willing to have us share about LEAD Wisconsin, please email SharaLee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Follow us on social media (Facebook, LEAD Wisconsin, and Instagram, @lead.wi). There you will find photos of campers, encouraging reminders and important updates!
Needless to say, we are grateful for the dream God put on Julaine’s heart and that she faithfully carried it for so many years until the timing was right. We are thankful for God uniquely equipping SharaLee to bring this vision to fruition. And we are humbled to have worked alongside a crew of volunteers who saw the value of equipping youth to be effective godly leaders who engage their culture from a biblical perspective and stewarded that mission with tenacity and intention!
In closing we would like to leave you with a few lines from our theme song from the week:
I have a destiny I know I shall fulfill
I have a destiny in that city on a hill
I have a destiny and it’s not an empty wish
For I know I was born for such a time as this
Long before the ages You predestined me
To walk in all the works You have prepared for me
You’ve given me a part to play history
To help prepare a bride for eternity
I did not choose You but You have chosen me
And appointed me for bearing fruit abundantly
I know You will complete the work begun in me
By the power of Your spirit working mightily
I have a destiny I know I shall fulfill
Earlier this week, Chrissy Clark, writing for DailyWire reported, “Students in a Wisconsin school district have access to a slew of ‘sexually explicit’ books via their school-provided computers, including content that dubs traditional views of marriage as ‘ignorant.’”
The article goes on to explain that this content teaches children, as young as third grade, how to use sex apps, “mysteriously” passes the filter Securely that the district uses to weed out sexual content and violates the state’s Sex Education Policy.
In response to this and on behalf of concerned parents Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL) issued a demand letter “urging immediate action to remove sexually explicit materials available through the district’s online library that violate state law and parents’ constitutional rights.”
Parents, this is a BIG deal, but we are not without hope. We can rejoice that the truth has come to light and that there are organizations such as WILL who fight for our constitutional rights. This is also a critical time for us to be proactive by voicing what we want for our children, teaching our children to think about whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, and lovely, and cultivating a relationship with our children such that they feel safe telling us what they are encountering at school. If you encounter any similar situations in your school district, we urge you to contact Attorney Dan Lennington at WILL at email@example.com.
Yesterday, Wisconsin Family Action’s Legislative Team, Julaine Appling and Micah Pearce, spent the day attending 3 different hearings in the capitol. Julaine provided testimony on four different bills in those hearings.
AB 195/SB 323 and AB 196/SB 322: These bills are the Protect Women’s Sports bills. The bills stop biological males from participating in girls’/women’s sports. AB 195/SB 323 prohibits this at the UW System schools and the technical training schools, both publicly funded institutions of higher learning. AB 196/SB322 does the same thing in Wisconsin’s public K-12 schools and private schools participating in a parental choice program. AB 195 was heard in the Assembly Committee on Colleges & Universities, and AB 196 was heard in the Assembly Education Committee. The Senate bills were heard in the Senate Committee on Human Services, Children and Families.
SB 260: This bill would close loopholes in the law to make it clear that the UW Madison and the UW Medical School cannot have any kind of funding relationship with Planned Parenthood to train residents to do abortions or to provide UW doctors to Planned Parenthood to do abortions.
SB 261: This bill would add additional information that would need to be tracked and reported after an induced abortion is performed. The additional information includes reporting the sex of the baby if that can be visually determined and if there is any fetal anomaly. The bill would also require reporting the identity of the facility where the induced abortion takes place. The author of the bill, Senator Jacque, offered an amendment on Tuesday with a number of additional points of information that would need to be determined and reported.
The above two pro-life bills were heard in the Senate Committee on Human Resources, Children and Families.
You can view recordings of two of the three hearings HERE. Wiseye will require you to have an account to see these archived recordings, but the account is FREE. We would urge you to have a Wiseye account because this is the stat\ government’s official partner for the video transmission of press conferences, legislative floor periods, committee meetings, State Supreme Court hearings and administrative meetings, and more.
Recordings of the hearings yesterday are available for AB 196 and SB 260, SB 261, SB 322, and SB 323 (these 4 bills were all heard in the same hearing). No recording is available for AB 195. Julaine speaks in the Assembly Education hearing on AB 195 at 2:14:40. She speaks in the Senate hearing on SB 260 at 3:07 and on SB 261, SB 322, and SB 323 at 3:59.
All of these bills are important to help protect our families here in Wisconsin. Watch for an email with information on contacting your elected officials on these bills! We’ll use our new action center for that communication.
Last week the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that the first chemical abortion pill can be prescribed via telehealth. This means that a pregnant woman can access an abortion-inducing drug without seeing a medical professional in-person and undergo this dangerous, life-taking procedure without a physician present.
In many states, including Wisconsin, chemical abortions must take place with a physician present because of the severe risk it presents to the mother. Thankfully, the FDA’s announcement does not override Wisconsin’s requirement for an in-person prescription and professional oversight of chemical abortions.
Abortion is wrong under any circumstance, but this policy significantly decreases the value of unborn life and the life of the mother by making a potent abortion-inducing medication so easy to attain. As believers, we should make it a point to intentionally celebrate life, encourage the next generation to consider children as a blessing from the Lord and delight in God’s ordination of the family unit.
Virginia recently became the first southern state to legalize recreational marijuana. Under this law an individual is permitted to have up to one ounce of marijuana in their possession, which is the equivalent of forty or eighty joints. Each household can have up to four cannabis plants. You can read more HERE.
In response to this news Julaine Appling, president of WFA, urges the constituents of Wisconsin to educate themselves on this matter.
“This battle [of legalizing or not legalizing marijuana] has come to our state, and we need to educate ourselves. Some Republicans in our legislature have introduced a bill to make possession of ten grams or less of marijuana a misdemeanor, not a felony. Ten grams of marijuana is about a third of an ounce, or about fifteen to twenty joints. Governor Evers’ budget calls for legalizing the recreational use of marijuana.”