Tennis legend Margaret Court speaks out against transgender athletes, says LGBTQ agenda is “of the devil”

Thursday, January 02, 2020 by: Ethan Huff

(Natural News) While it’s becoming increasingly rare for self-proclaiming pastors and ministers to speak out against the LGBTQ agenda, one fiery preacher from Australia who’s also a former professional tennis player is boldly telling it like it is, no matter the consequences.

Margaret Court, who heads up Victory Life Church in Perth, recently delivered a message to her congregation about the transgender athlete trend, warning that it and the “LGBT rights” movement are both “of the devil.”

The 77-year-old tennis legend, who won a record 24 Grand Slam singles titles during her heyday, told her audience that athletes, both male and female, only stand to be harmed by their acceptance of this onslaught of perversion that’s washing over society like a tidal wave of wickedness.

“You know with that LGBT, they’ll wish they never put the T on the end of it because, particularly in women’s sports, they’re going to have so many problems,” Court proclaimed.

Court also specifically addressed the transgender targeting of children, warning that children as young as seven are being “transitioned” into “other” genders by child-abusing “parents” and “medical professionals.”

“It’s so wrong at that age because a lot of things are planted in this thought realm and they start to question, ‘what am I?’” Court stated from her pulpit.

LGBT is “not of God,” Court says

In the past, Court has delivered sermons condemning homosexuality as well, including loud-and-proud lesbian tennis players whom she says have a negative and corrupting influence on younger tennis players, not to mention their younger fans.

“You know, even that LGBT in the schools, it’s of the devil, it’s not of God,” Court is quoted as having stated, earning her plenty of condemnation from the Cult of LGBTQ and its “allies.”

Billie Jean King, a 12-time Grand Slam tennis champion, last year called for Court’s name to be removed from the Australian Open Show Court in Melbourne simply because she finds Court’s viewpoints on homosexuality and LGBTQ “offensive.”

But none of this phases Court, who’s repeatedly doubled down on her convictions and even become bolder in the face of persecution from the LGBTQ mafia.

“You have got young people taking hormones and having changes, by the time they are 17 they are thinking, ‘Now I’m a boy and really I was a girl.’ Because you know what, God made us that way,” Court has stated about transgender regret.

And the reason why the media, academia, and governments are going along with this perversion is because “the devil” controls these institutions, Court has further pointed out.

“The devil gets in and the media and the political, the education, TV – he wants to control a nation so he can affect people’s minds and mouths,” Court contends.

“I can go on television and if I say, ‘well, this is what the Bible says,’ well, it’s like opening a can of worms,” she further notes. “My goodness, you’ve let a torpedo off or something. No, it’s true, because they hate the word of God.”

Amazingly, Court has still been invited to attend the 2020 Australian Open as a special guest. Were she an American making such statements as an American legend, you can be sure she would not only be uninvited to such an event, but probably blacklisted for all participation in society, period.

“Evil-minded adults are trying to impose gender change on children as they are more easily persuaded without having the ability to understand the consequences,” noted one Breitbart News commenter in response to this news.

“Those promoting and enabling this to happen will be held to account once the damage they have done comes to light.”

To keep up with the latest news about what the Cult of LGBTQ is up to, be sure to check out Evil.news. (Click to Source)

Sources for this article include:

Breitbart.com

NaturalNews.com


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Prominent Italian intellectual accuses Pope of hating the West, aspiring to destroy it and Christian tradition

  BY 

Jihad Watch has frequently addressed concerns about Pope Francis and his efforts to ally with unsavory Islamic leaders and push for more Muslim migrants in the West. It is fortunate that not all Catholic leaders see eye to eye with the Pope.

For example, Cardinal Robert Sarah — prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments — compared “the modern influx of Muslim migrants to the invasions of barbarian tribes that ultimately brought down the Roman Empire in a.d. 475.” Sarah also issued a warning which contradicts the Pope. He cautioned that “it is a false exegesis [interpretation of scriptural text] to use the Word of God to promote migration. God never wanted these rifts.” But this is precisely what Pope Francis has been doing: acting as a blind guide in preaching that it is un-Christian to oppose mass Muslim migration into Europe. Meanwhile, the Vatican remains walled up, and the Pope remains surrounded by security.

A prominent Italian intellectual has now kicked criticism of the Pope up a notch regarding his views about mass Muslim migration and much more. Marcello Pera, a non-believer and a “philosopher of science, former president of the Italian Senate, and close friend of Pope Benedict XVI,” asserted that the Pope “hates the West, he aspires to destroy it. … as he aspires to destroy the Christian tradition.”

Given the globalist views of the Pope and his Islamic supremacist associates (which prompted Robert Spencer to refer to him as The Grand Sheikh Francis of al-Vatican), as well as his push for more Muslim migration, Pera makes a compelling case.

“Time for Pope Francis and the Vatican to wake up about Islam,” by William Kilpatrick, Lifesite News, January 7, 2020:

January 7, 2019 (The Catholic Thing) — In comments last year, Marcello Pera, a prominent Italian intellectual and non-believer, criticized Pope Francis for “openly going against tradition, doctrine, and introducing inexplicable innovations, behaviors and gestures.”

A philosopher of science, former president of the Italian Senate, and close friend of Pope Benedict XVI, Pera asserted that Francis had turned Catholicism into “a Church so outgoing that it can no longer be found anywhere.”

In an earlier 2017 interview with Il Mattino, Pera was even more outspoken. In answer to a question about “indiscriminate” welcoming of migrants to Europe, he replied: “Frankly, I do not get this pope, whatever he says is beyond any rational understanding. It’s evident to all that an indiscriminate welcoming is not possible: there is a critical point that can’t be reached.”

He continued: “If the pope … insists in a massive and total welcoming, I ask myself: why does he say it? … Why does he lack a minimum of realism, that very little that is requested of anyone? The answer I can give myself is only one: The Pope does it because he hates the West, he aspires to destroy it. … As he aspires to destroy the Christian tradition.”

Two years ago, most Catholics would have found that hard to swallow. But now, the idea that Pope Francis hates the West is beginning to seem plausible. It would explain much of what he says and does — his criticism of capitalism and colonialism, Amazonian initiative and, above all, encouragement of mass Muslim migration into Europe.

Does he also aspire to destroy the Christian tradition? Well, he rarely misses an opportunity to criticize traditional Catholics. At the same time, he seems intent on introducing exotic and decidedly non-traditional practices into the life of the Church.

The key word, of course, is “aspires.” Does Francis consciously desire to “destroy” the West and traditional Christianity (aka Christianity)? Or is he simply a well-intentioned do-gooder who doesn’t understand the consequences of his experiments?

That’s a serious question, but it’s unnecessary to know the answer in order to raise a related question: Whatever the intention, do his policies and programs actually tend toward the destruction of the West and of Christianity?

I would say, “Yes, they do.” And I would argue, as Professor Pera does, that they “lack a minimum of realism.” Future historians may well look back upon our era as the Age of Unreality. And many in the Church have embraced this unreality as though it were a newly revealed Gospel.

Some Church leaders have been flirting with the idea of same-sex marriage, and some seem willing to believe that females can transition to males and males to females. Others, including the pope himself, seem to believe in the fantasy idea that the lot of the poor can be improved by getting rid of fossil-fuels — which may be the reason that they have also revived the fantasy of the Noble Savage. Because, minus the benefits of electric power, much of the world will be quickly reduced to a primitive level. In which case, we may all find ourselves praying to Pachamama and the rain gods for a good harvest.

The most dangerous fantasy, however, is the one that Church leaders have created about Islam. We are told that it’s a religion of peace, that it shares much common ground with Christianity, that Muslims venerate Jesus just as Catholics do, that terrorism has nothing to do with Islam, and that the slaughter of Christians by Muslims can be attributed to a tiny minority who “misunderstand” their religion.

At the same time, we are taught that “Islamophobia” — an irrational fear of Islam — is a far greater danger than Islamic aggression.

Pera’s point is that these supposedly “irrational” fears are actually quite reasonable. He is mainly concerned with the fantasy that Europe can successfully absorb millions of Muslim migrants who don’t want to assimilate…. (Click to Source)


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TEPCO says new leak has spilt 20,000 litres of radioactive coolant at the stricken Fukushima Nuclear Plant: It is now almost 7 years since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declared everything is “under control,”

Friday, 17 January 2020

Radiation-contaminated debris and soil are stockpiled for disposal near the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s embattled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. (Photo: Christopher Furlong / Getty Images)

Tokyo Electric Power Company says coolant has seeped out from an underground frozen soil wall built around its crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. The frozen soil wall came into operation four years ago. It was built to keep groundwater from flowing into reactor buildings. They were damaged by the March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear meltdowns.

The utility firm, TEPCO, says it found coolant leaking at three locations from components that connect pipes in the wall. The company had noticed a reduction in coolant in its tank earlier this month and was searching for the cause. TEPCO says it believes 20,000 of 1.1 million litres of the coolant has leaked, but that this will not affect the operation of the wall. The company says it will replace the components in the wall and repair another leak that was found in December. nhk.org

Almost six years after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe famously declared the contaminated water problem at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant “under control,” today it remains anything but.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) continues to face difficulties in dealing with water contaminated with radioactive substances at its crippled plant. About 18,000 tons of highly contaminated water remains accumulated in reactor buildings and other places. Abe made the  “under control,” declaration in September 2013 while Tokyo was bidding to win the 2020 Summer Games.
In reality, however, the situation is not under control even now.

In a meeting of the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) in June, one of its members, Nobuhiko Ban, told TEPCO officials, “I want you to show whether you have a prospect (for the reduction of contaminated water) or you have given up.” The water level did not fall as planned in an area of a basement floor at the No. 3 reactor building for two months. Asked why the level did not drop, TEPCO officials offered only vague explanations in the meeting. Ban made the remark out of irritation. Highly contaminated water that has accumulated in reactor buildings and turbine buildings is a major concern at the Fukushima plant. In addition to water that was used to cool melted nuclear fuel at the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 reactors, groundwater also has flowed into those buildings through cracks. The concentration of radioactive substances in highly contaminated water is about 100 million times that of the contaminated water that has been processed and stored in tanks.

Immediately after the nuclear accident at the Fukushima plant in March 2011, highly contaminated water leaked into the sea through underground tunnels. As a result, radioactive substances whose concentrations were higher than allowable standards were detected in fish and other seafood. After the nuclear accident, about 100,000 tons of water initially accumulated in the basement portions of buildings that housed the No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 reactors and buildings that accommodated turbines. TEPCO has removed groundwater through wells.

It also created “frozen walls” in the ground by freezing soil around the buildings.
Using those methods, the company has decreased the flow of groundwater into the buildings and, as a result, the level of highly contaminated water has dropped there. Nine years since the nuclear accident occurred, the volume of highly contaminated water in the buildings has fallen to 18,000 tons. TEPCO aims to reduce the volume further to 6,000 tons by the end of fiscal 2020. Fairwinds.org

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China Just Escalated Their Brutal Persecution Of Christians To An Entirely New Level

 

Be very thankful that you don’t live in China.  Approximately one out of every seven people on the entire planet lives in China, and it has become one of the most dystopian societies that the world has ever seen.  Surveillance cameras, government spies and facial recognition scanners are everywhere, and the totalitarian “social credit score” system that is currently being rolled out is an absolute nightmare.  And the Chinese government is not content to simply control how people behave.  They also want to literally control what people believe, and the ongoing crackdown on the Christian faith has been absolutely brutal.  Over the past several years, scores of pastors have been arrested, countless underground churches have been shut down, and thousands of Bibles have been burned.  Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough for Chinese officials, and so they have now taken things to an entirely new level.

When the communists first came to power in China, it was a very dark time for Christians.  But underground churches started blossoming even in the midst of the persecution, and eventually there were a few decades where the national government more or less tolerated unsanctioned gatherings.  Today, it has been estimated that there are more than 100 million Christians in China, and it is being projected that China may actually have more Christians that any other nation on the planet by the year 2030.

Needless to say, the communists don’t like any threats to their power, and they see this underground movement as a very serious threat.

Under the leadership of Chinese President Xi Jinping, the persecution of unofficial churches has steadily escalated.  This year they actually tried to ban Christians from gathering on Christmas, and a series of new regulations has just been introduced that requires “total submission to the Chinese Communist Party at all times”…

A new mandate entitled “Administrative Measures for Religious Groups” has been approved by the CPC and is comprised of six chapters and 41 articles dealing with the organization, functions, offices, supervision, projects and economic administration of religious communities.

The new rules also seek to ensure that religious leaders support, promote and implement total submission to the Chinese Communist Party at all times.

So what does that sort of “submission” look like?

Well, in some cases officials have required churches to take down pictures of Jesus and replace them with pictures of President Xi Jinping.

Yes, this is how twisted things have become in China.

The new regulations also require all churches to “spread the principles and policies of the Chinese Communist Party” in all of their activities…

According to International Christian Concern, Article 5 of the new ordinance reads that “religious organizations must adhere to the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, observe the constitution, laws, regulations, ordinances and policies, adhere to the principle of independence and self-government, adhere to the directives on religions in China, implementing the values ​​of socialism …”

In addition, Article 17 specifies that all religious organizations “must spread the principles and policies of the Chinese Communist Party” in everything they do.

Any church that does not go along is likely to be raided and shut down at any time.

For example, Pastor Wang Yi once led one of the most important underground churches in all of China, but his church was raided and he was arrested.

And now we have learned that he has just been sentenced to nine years in prison…

Wang Yi, a leader in one of the most well-known Christian congregations in China, has been quietly sentenced to nine years in prison, according to a statement on the website of the Intermediate People’s Court of Chengdu Municipality.

The sentencing is the latest incident in an ongoing crackdown on organized religion in China. Early Rain Covenant Church, which Wang founded in 2008, attracted about 500 followers and was considered one of the most influential “underground churches” in China, operating independently of the state.

According to Chinese officials, Pastor Yi received such a harsh sentence for “subverting state power”.

Of course it isn’t just pastors that are being arrested.  Countless numbers of ordinary Chinese citizens have been swept up during the raids, and many are never seen or heard from again.

One Chinese Christian woman told the Los Angeles Times what happened to her when she was interrogated…

Li Chengju glared at her prison interrogator as he pressed her to renounce her Christian church and condemn her pastor.

Her captor warned she would not be so lucky as the pastor, who was locked in secret detention but at least might get a day in court.

“Look at you. You sweep the floors at church,” the interrogator said. “You think you’re getting a trial like your pastor? You don’t qualify.”

The way that the Chinese are treating their citizens is absolutely reprehensible, and unless they completely change course we should not be conducting any trade with them at all.

Sadly, the “five-year plan” that was launched in 2018 to indoctrinate churches all over China is not even halfway done…

The government calls its campaign “Sinicization” — a euphemism for turning faith into a tool for indoctrination in Chinese Communist Party ideology. The official five-year plan, issued in 2018, calls for inserting “patriotic education” and “socialist core values” into churches, revising the Bible and using church sermons to enforce party leadership and reject foreign influences.

The persecution of Christians is likely to get even worse in China, and this comes at a time when Christian persecution is on the rise all over the world.  This is something that many of us have been anticipating because of the times in which we live, but it is still horrifying to actually watch it happen.

As I close this article, I would like to share a message from Pastor Wang Yi that was posted on Facebook after he was arrested.  May his words inspire all of us to live every moment and to be the people that we were created to be…

“I hope God uses me, by means of first losing my personal freedom, to tell those who have deprived me of my personal freedom that there is an authority higher than their authority, and that there is a freedom that they cannot restrain, a freedom that fills the church of the crucified and risen Jesus Christ.”

“Regardless of what crime the government charges me with, whatever filth they fling at me, as long as this charge is related to my faith, my writings, my comments, and my teachings, it is merely a lie and temptation of demons. I categorically deny it. I will serve my sentence, but I will not serve the law. I will be executed, but I will not plead guilty.”

“Those who lock me up will one day be locked up by angels. Those who interrogate me will finally be questioned and judged by Christ. When I think of this, the Lord fills me with a natural compassion and grief toward those who are attempting to and actively imprisoning me. Pray that the Lord would use me, that he would grant me patience and wisdom, that I might take the gospel to them.”

“Separate me from my wife and children, ruin my reputation, destroy my life and my family – the authorities are capable of doing all of these things. However, no one in this world can force me to renounce my faith; no one can make me change my life; and no one can raise me from the dead.”

“Jesus is the Christ, son of the eternal, living God. He died for sinners and rose to life for us. He is my king and the king of the whole earth yesterday, today, and forever. I am his servant, and I am imprisoned because of this. I will resist in meekness those who resist God, and I will joyfully violate all laws that violate God’s laws.”

– Pastor Wang Yi, “My Declaration of Faithful Disobedience” (Click to Source)


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Your Daily Readings – Verse of the Day -John 14:6 – Restored Name King James Version – January 19, 2020

John 14

Christ comforts his disciples with the hope of heaven
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in יהוה(Yahweh), believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.
professes himself the way, the truth, and the life, and one with the Father
Thomas saith unto him, Rabbi, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?
Yahushua saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
Philip saith unto him, Rabbi, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
Yahushua saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
assures their prayers to be effectual
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
requires obedience
If ye love me, keep my commandments.
promises the Comforter
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Rabbi, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?
Yahushua answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.
These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh), whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
and leaves his peace with them
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.
Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

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Poland defends itself against LGBT insanity while America surrenders its children to mentally ill perverts and pedophiles

Sunday, January 05, 2020 by: Ethan Huff

(Natural News) More than 80 different localities throughout the great nation of Poland have declared themselves to be “LGBTQ-free zones,” according to reports, and the rainbow brigade is not happy about it.

Disgusted with the continued spread of gross perversions like “Drag Queen Story Hour” coming out of the West, Poland is being forced to either accept or reject it – and the consensus seems to be to reject it.

Unlike the United States, where even the so-called “churches” are either ignoring, or in many cases promoting, society’s swirl down the toilet, Poland is actually trying to preserve its religious, cultural and moral heritage and set itself apart from Mystery Babylon and its doctrines of demons.

Since the LGBTQ mafia is showing no signs of letting up with its child-indoctrinating agenda, Poland, or at least parts of Poland, are taking a bold stand that’s already being condemned by the beast system that surrounds it.

The European Parliament, which is dominated by godless globalists, recently voted 463 to 107 in condemnation of Poland for its “discrimination against LGBTQ people.” A resolution also calls on the Polish government “to revoke discriminatory measures such as the ‘LGBTQ-free zones.’”

But Poland remains unphased as its government, which is controlled by “the ruling right-wing populist Law and Justice [Party],” is solidly committed to preserving a strong nationalist identity that includes total opposition to “LGBTQ ideology.”

Law and Justice chairman Jaros?aw Kaczy?ski, in fact, warned back in April of an “imported” LGBTQ movement that “threatens our identity, our nation … and therefore the Polish state.”

Homosexual activists admit their strategies for forced societal conversion include “planned psychological attacks” and media “propaganda”

As you may recall, Poland aggressively cracked down on so-called “pride” marches that tried to takeover Polish streets back in the summer, condemning them as “unwelcome.” Poland has also gone against the prevailing cultural tides in other regards, including with its rejection of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs).

But none of this is going over well with the Cult of LGBTQ, which demands that all nations and people groups capitulate to its demands, whether that be to expose young children to salacious adult entertainment at will, or instruct them in the ways of anal sex at taxpayer-funded public schools.

Poland is having none of this, and we laud this morally rooted country for not being a collective spineless coward like the United States has become. Apparently, there are still real men in Poland who aren’t afraid to stand up for what’s right and unilaterally reject the assault of LGBTQ whenever it rears its ugly head.

Keep in mind that all of this was outlined in the 1989 book After the Ball, in which authors and homosexual activists Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen revealed their strategies for converting America into a godless cesspool of total LGBTQ perversion and corruption.

In the book, Kirk and Madsen called for a “conversion of the average American’s emotions, mind, and will” on the subject of LGBTQ. They explained how this could be accomplished “through a planned psychological attack in the form of propaganda fed to the nation via the media.”

This homo-duo went on to predict that if they could successfully “produce a major realignment solidly in favour of gay rights, the intransigents (like the racists of twenty years ago) will eventually be effectively silenced by both law and police society” – and as we can all see, this strategy has been largely successfully.

Now that the U.S. has been conquered by LGBTQ, the next step for these homo-activists is to conquer the remaining holdouts, which obviously includes Poland as well as Russia.

“The moral of this story is that unmoored from Truth, tastes can lead to turpitude, fun to social failure, and hearts to Hell – and that ideas, truly, do have consequences,” writes Selwyn Duke for The New American. (Click to Source)

For more related news about the LGBTQ takeover, subversion, and destruction of society, be sure to check out Evil.news.

Sources for this article include:

TheNewAmerican.com

NaturalNews.com

NaturalNews.com


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Christians Beheaded for Christmas, The West Goes Back to Sleep

by Giulio Meotti –

  • How much bigger and more extended must this war on Christians become before the West considers it a “genocide” and acts to prevent it?
  • The day after Christians were beheaded in Nigeria, Pope Francis admonished Western society. About beheaded Christians? No. “Put down your phones, talk during meals”, the Pope said. He did not speak a single word about the horrific execution of his Christian brothers and sisters. A few days before that, Pope Francis hung a cross encircled by a life jacket in memory of migrants who lost their lives in the Mediterranean Sea. He did not commemorate the lives of Christians killed by Islamic extremists with even a mention.
  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that her priority will be fighting climate change. She did not mention persecuted Christians. Meanwhile The Economist wrote that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, a passionate defender of persecuted Christians, politically “exploits” the issue.
  • “The United Nations has held inquiries and focuses its anger on Israel for defending itself against that same terrorist organization [Hamas]. But the barbarous slaughter of thousands upon thousands of Christians is met with relative indifference”. — Ambassador Ronald S. Lauder, President of the World Jewish Congress, The New York Times, August 19, 2014.

Martha Bulus, a Nigerian Catholic woman, was going to her bridal party when she was abducted by Islamic extremists of Boko Haram. Martha and her companions were beheaded and their execution filmed. The video of the brutal murders of these 11 Christians was released on December 26 to coincide with Christmas celebrations. It is reminiscent of the images of other Christians dressed in orange jumpsuits bent on their knees on a beach, each being held by a masked, black-clad jihadist holding a knife at their throats. Their bodies were discovered in a mass grave in Libya.

On the scale of Nigeria’s anti-Christian persecution, Martha was less fortunate than another abducted girl, Leah Sharibu, who has now been in captivity nearly two years and just spent her second Christmas in the hands of Boko Haram. The reason? Leah refused to convert to Islam and deny her Christianity. Nigerian Christian leaders are also protesting the “continuous abduction of under-aged Christian girls by Muslim youths…”. These girls “are forcefully converted to Islam and taken in for marriage without the consent of their parents”.

Nigeria is experiencing an Islamist war of the extermination of Christians. So far, 900 churches in northern Nigeria have been destroyed by Boko Haram. U.S. President Donald J. Trump was informed that at least 16,000 Christians have been killed there since 2015. In one single Nigerian Catholic diocese, Maiduguri, 5,000 Christians were murdered. How much bigger and more extended must this war on Christians become before the West considers it a “genocide” and acts to prevent it?

The day after Christians were beheaded in Nigeria, Pope Francis admonished Western society. About beheaded Christians? No. “Put down your phones, talk during meals”, the Pope said. He did not speak a single word about the horrific execution of his Christian brothers and sisters. A few days before that, Pope Francis hung a cross encircled by a life jacket in memory of migrants who lost their lives in the Mediterranean Sea. Last September, the Pope unveiled a monument to migrants in St. Peter’s Square, but he did not commemorate the lives of Christians killed by Islamic extremists with even a mention.

Cardinal Robert Sarah, one of the very few Catholic Church leaders who mentioned the Islamic character of this massacre, wrote, “In Nigeria, the murder of 11 Christians by mad Islamists is a reminder of how many of my African brothers in Christ live faith at the risk of their own lives.”

It is not only the Vatican that is silent. Not a single Western government found time to express horror and indignation at the beheading of Christians. “Where is the moral revulsion at this tragedy?”, asked Nigerian Bishop Matthew Kukah after the Christmas massacre. “This is part of a much wider drama we are living with on a daily basis”.

European leaders should follow the example of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who, in his first Christmas message to the nation said:

“Today of all days, I want us to remember those Christians around the world who are facing persecution. For them, Christmas Day will be marked in private, in secret, perhaps even in a prison cell”.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that her priority will be fighting climate change. She did not mention persecuted Christians. French President Emmanuel Macron in his mid-winter speech was not even able to say “Merry Christmas”.

Meanwhile, The Economist wrote that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, a passionate defender of persecuted Christians, politically “exploits” the issue.

Europe’s leaders failed to condemn the barbaric execution of Christians on Christmas Day: political correctness is corroding Western society from within.

At the beginning of December, another African bishop, Justin Kientega of Burkina Faso, said: “Nobody is listening to us. Evidently, the West are more concerned with protecting their own interests”.

“Why is the world silent while Christians are being slaughtered in the Middle East and Africa?”, wrote Ronald S. Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress.

“In Europe and in the United States, we have witnessed demonstrations over the tragic deaths of Palestinians who have been used as human shields by Hamas, the terrorist organization that controls Gaza. The United Nations has held inquiries and focuses its anger on Israel for defending itself against that same terrorist organization. But the barbarous slaughter of thousands upon thousands of Christians is met with relative indifference”.

Where were the Western governments when thousands of young Muslims entered Syria and Iraq to hunt and kill Christians and destroy their churches and communities? The West did nothing and suffered for its inaction. The Islamists started with Christians in the East and continued with “post-Christians” in the West. As the French medievalist Rémi Brague said, “The forces that want to drive Christians out of their ancestral lands would ask themselves, why not continue in the West a work so well begun in the East?”.

There has been no outrage in the West about cutting off Christian heads, only silence, interrupted by “Allahu Akbar”, gunshots and bombs. The history books of the future will not look kindly this Western betrayal — depending on who writes them. The end of the Christians of the East will be a disaster for the Church in the West. They will no longer have anyone living in their own cradle of civilization.

What would we be reading if, for instance, Christian terrorists had stopped a bus, separated the passengers according to their faith, ordered the Muslims to convert to Christianity and then murdered 11 of them? The opposite just happened in Kenya. What did we read? Nothing. On December 10, the Islamic terrorist group Al Shabaab stopped a bus in northern Kenya, then murdered only those who were not Muslims. We Westerners are usually moved by the persecution of this or that minority; why never for our Christians?

The Christianophobia of the Muslim extremists who massacre Christians in Middle East and Africa is central to a totalitarian ideology that aims to unify the Muslims of the ummah (the Islamic community) into a Caliphate, after destroying the borders of national states and liquidating “unbelievers” — Jews, Christians, and other minorities as well as “Muslim apostates”. Nigeria is now at the forefront of that drama.

“Nigeria is now the deadliest place in the world to be a Christian”, noted Emmanuel Ogebe, an attorney.

“What we have is a genocide. They are trying to displace the Christians, they are trying to possess their land and they are trying to impose their religion on the so-called infidels and pagans who they consider Christians to be”.

The West goes back to sleep. “The West opened its borders without hesitation to refugees from Muslim countries fleeing war”, wrote the economist Nathalie Elgrably-Lévy. “This seemingly virtuous Western solidarity is nevertheless selective and discriminatory”. Persecuted Christians have been abandoned by the Western governments and public squares.

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has recently been besieged by Muslims protesting a new law that would offer citizenship to neighboring non-Muslims fleeing persecution. Tarek Fatah explained in the Toronto Sun that the Muslim outrage on the new Indian law comes from the fear “that allowing citizenship to persecuted Pakistani Christians, Hindus and Sikhs would increase the non-Muslim population of the country and thus dilute their veto power they’ve exercised in India for the last 70 years”.

Where are the squares filled with Londoners or New Yorkers for the Christian refugees discriminated by the West? In the parts of Syria occupied by Islamists, Christians just spent a “special Christmas” — without chime bells or lights and with many of their churches turned into stables.

The Khabour, the Syrian region where Assyrian Christians lived, is now called “dead valley”. The former Archbishop of Canterbury, George Carey, recently wrote:

“War in Syria has reignited. Once again refugees fill its roads in need of our compassion. Yet those from the ‘wrong faith’ won’t find it from the British Government. The UK’s resettlement of 16,000 refugees from the earlier conflict saw hardly any from the most brutalised minorities reach safety in our land. Of the refugees who came here in 2015 under the Vulnerable Persons Scheme, only 1.6 per cent were Christians. That’s despite this group being 10 per cent of the Syrian population”.

Muslims fill Western squares for their own; but for our persecuted Christian brothers, these squares remain vacant. (Click to Source)

Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.


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Marketing Psychiatric Drugs to Jailers and Judges

Drug companies are courting jails and judges through sophisticated marketing efforts.

 
On a rainy Monday morning in April, more than a hundred sheriffs, doctors, nurses, and jail guards from around the country sat in a ballroom on the outskirts of Nashville, sipping on coffees and listening to Daniel Potenza, a psychiatrist from New Hampshire, describe one of their most vexing problems: treating schizophrenia.

The conference, on medical care inside America’s jails and prisons, had been put on by an organization that sets standards for treatment in correctional facilities. Potenza paced the stage, talking animatedly about a national mental-health epidemic that had burdened jails and prisons. He flipped to a presentation slide showing that nearly half of all inmates diagnosed with schizophrenia were “non-adherent,” meaning that they weren’t taking their daily medications as prescribed.

Then, Potenza suggested a solution: a single shot of long-acting antipsychotic medicine, whose effects last for as long as three months, administered to patients while they’re still incarcerated. To show how this might help, Potenza presented a hypothetical scenario in which an inmate with schizophrenia becomes eligible for release but is denied parole because a medical provider describes the person as non-adherent. Parole-board members might be willing to reconsider if they could ensure that the person would receive his or her medications as prescribed ahead of release. In some cases, a “treatment resistant” patient who is simply forgetful might agree to the shot. However, in some cases, a judge might order a shot to be administered without the patient’s permission.

Potenza didn’t recommend a specific drug, and he was presenting at the conference at his employer’s expense, having been invited by its organizers.  But if you looked inside the conference program, you would learn that the keynote address on schizophrenia had been underwritten by Alkermes, an Irish company that manufactures one of the long-acting medicines, Aristada. If you walked through the exhibit hall, you would see Alkermes banners hanging from the rafters, along with a booth of salespeople expounding on the benefits of the antipsychotic drug. An Aristada flyer they passed out featured two buildings—a guard tower surrounded by a razor-wire fence, and a community health center—with the slogan “Transition of care takes time.”

For most of the twentieth century, pharmaceutical companies expressed little interest in inmates. People in need of mental-health treatment often received it at state-run psychiatric hospitals. But in the 1950s and ’60s, states began shuttering many of America’s psychiatric hospitals, pushing patients toward treatment in their communities. Then, in the 1980s and ’90s, lawmakers passed “tough on crime” policies that dramatically expanded the nation’s corrections population. Taken together, those developments had the unintended consequence of turning jails and prisons into warehouses for the mentally ill. By 2005, more than a million adults behind bars had some form of mental illness, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

The dramatic shift in American mental-health care presented new opportunities for pharmaceutical companies. Correctional officials are required by law to provide adequate health care, including prescription drugs, to inmates. They also have an imperative to try to make sure people have enough medication when they are released to tide them over until they can seek care on their own. Federal researchers have found that releasing inmates with a supply of medication, and connecting them to community-based treatment, has lowered the odds of recidivism. But by the turn of the millennium, psychiatric-drug prices were rising. As early as the 2000s, to help mitigate costs, local officials in some states, including Washington and Ohio, sought free samples of antipsychotic medications from pharmaceutical companies.

Since then, the relationship between drug companies and the criminal-justice system seems to have intensified: free samples to detention facilities; comped lunches during which jail and prison doctors learn about medications; and payments to physicians to tout certain medications at conferences for criminal-justice professionals, including those without health-care licenses such as sheriffs and drug-court judges. At recent conferences about correctional health care, Merck, Gilead, AbbVie, and other big pharmaceutical companies have staged “product theaters” or “education luncheons” that show how their products could help treat inmates. The criminal-justice system isn’t just a lucrative market because of current inmates; it also introduces incarcerated people to medication that they might continue using after they’re released. (The full cash price of Aristada is about $1,300 for a four-week shot. The drug is covered by Medicaid and Medicare but can still require hefty copays.)

Dr. Joseph Penn, the director of mental-health services for the Correctional Managed Care division of the University of Texas Medical Branch, which oversees treatment in many of the state’s jails and prisons, says drug companies have awakened to the potential market behind bars. “No other country incarcerates as many people as we do, and they realized, ‘Hey, that’s a whole market we haven’t tapped,’” Penn said.

Long-acting schizophrenia drugs, in particular, can be an effective medication for inmates who might otherwise resist treatment, potentially leading to a safer and more predictable environment for them and for the correctional officers on shift. Potenza, the doctor who presented at the Tennessee conference, told me that meetings with drug companies allow doctors like him “to understand the benefits, despite the amplification”—of a particular drug’s merits—“from the company reps.” And free samples of these drugs can make them more accessible.

But despite having benefits for detention facilities and prisoners—free drugs, more information about new treatments—these marketing efforts have raised worries among criminal-justice advocates that drug companies could influence both the prescribing habits of correctional doctors and the choices of non-health-care professionals such as sheriffs and drug-court judges. A recent ProPublica analysis found that doctors who accepted money from pharmaceutical companies for top brand-name drugs were more likely to prescribe those companies’ medicines than doctors who did not. And Dominic Sisti, a medical-ethics professor at the University of Pennsylvania, worries that nonmedical professionals might not be able to analyze drug companies’ marketing messages the way doctors can. “It’s a sales pitch,” Sisti said.

Potenza said that audiences should “apply a keen eye as to anything that is biased.” Dr. Brent Gibson, the chief health officer for the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, which organized the conference at which Potenza presented, said in an email that Alkermes and other sponsoring companies do not have input into presentations like Potenza’s. “We do reserve the right to not accept financial support from a corporate entity that is in conflict with our mission, but we do not feel that is the case with pharmaceutical companies that offer medications that can be useful in the correctional setting,” he wrote.

While drug companies have long marketed to people in a position to help patients make decisions, critics say their efforts in the criminal-justice sphere are particularly troubling because the patients involved, being incarcerated, may not feel that they have as much of a say in their own health-care decisions.

John Snook, the executive director of the Treatment Advocacy Center, a group that calls for better mental-health treatment, said, “If you’re a jailer, and someone says, ‘We’re going to provide you with a solution that gets regular levels of therapeutic medicine to a population that’s difficult for you to control’”—in the form of samples of psychiatric drugs—“that’s going to be extremely attractive.”

But David Fathi, director of the ACLU’s National Prison Project, expressed concern about whether this kind of marketing, aimed at jailers and judges rather than incarcerated people themselves, further diminishes the agency of prisoners, who are disempowered in nearly every facet of life behind bars. Even in cases where incarcerated patients elect to take a psychiatric drug, he said, it may be a choice made under duress, knowing that they may be medicated against their will if they refuse. “If you know you can be forcibly medicated, can you really make a free and noncoercive choice about medication?” he said.

Geoff Mogilner, a spokesman for Alkermes, said, “We expect healthcare professionals to utilize their independent clinical judgment to continually assess, with their patient’s input, how a medication is working and to recommend the medication that works best.”

Alkermes, which manufactures drugs for conditions that are disproportionately found behind bars—such as schizophrenia and alcohol and opioid addiction—is among several companies that have embraced the criminal-justice system as a source of customers. Starting in the early 2010s, Alkermes promoted Vivitrol, a treatment for opioid-use disorder, to correctional facilities. The treatment, generically known as naltrexone, had previously been used for alcohol-use disorder, but the drug floundered. When Alkermes recast it as a solution to the opioid epidemic, the company directly lobbied jailers and judges on the shot’s merits, selling the promise of the drug despite scant evidence of its effectiveness compared to competing treatments like buprenorphine, one of the active ingredients in the brand-name drug Suboxone. In closed-door meetings, Alkermes disparaged Suboxone as a “black market” drug that was illegally abused inside correctional facilities, according to a report from The New York Times. The company’s marketing practices received blowback. (Alkermes has pointed to studies it says offer further evidence for Vivitrol’s effectiveness. In some cases, the company has pushed back against criticisms. Earlier this month, in response to a warning letter from the Food and Drug Administration, the company responded that it was taking steps to be “fully compliant” with federal regulations.) Alkermes accomplished its goal: People received Vivitrol while behind bars, and kept using it once they were released. Today Vivitrol is widely available in treatment facilities across the country, in part thanks to this early push.

Drugmakers introduced long-acting schizophrenia shots more than 50 years ago as a way to infuse consistency into psychosis treatment. But some psychiatrists and mental-health advocates were skeptical because of concerns about extended exposure to side effects such as sleepiness and low blood pressure, and because the shots seemed like “an attempt by psychiatrists to impose their will on patients,” according to a paper by Ahsan Khan, a psychiatrist at Saint Louis University, and colleagues.

As long-acting antipsychotic drugs improved, along with their public image, drug companies thought they could reinvigorate the market. In July 2009, the Food and Drug Administration approved Invega Sustenna, a long-acting, injectable form of an earlier antipsychotic pill made by Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen brand. Abilify Maintena, from a Japanese company called Otsuka Pharmaceutical, followed four years later. Then came Aristada, green-lit in 2015.

Within the multibillion-dollar schizophrenia-drug market, the makers of all three drugs are seeking to cast long-acting injections as the future of schizophrenia treatment. A 2015 study by the University of California, Los Angeles, found that patients who were given such injections were more likely to adhere to treatment and see reduced symptoms over a 12-month period, compared to those taking the same medication orally. But there’s also a chance that side effects will last longer than with the pill form, and that’s one of the key reasons some psychiatrists still start with the pill.

Recognizing the importance of detention facilities in the mental-health market—approximately 15 percent of state prisoners experience serious mental illness, more than three times the rate found in the total U.S. adult population—drugmakers are, to varying degrees, marketing the long-acting drugs to criminal-justice audiences.

Janssen, whose schizophrenia drug leads the market, offers free samples and financially supports advocacy groups aimed at keeping individuals with mental illnesses out of jails. Last year, the company won approval from the FDA to market Invega Sustenna as a treatment that can keep schizophrenic patients out of jail. Before then, Janssen could market the drug’s ability to treat schizophrenia but not make further claims about how it might help incarcerated populations.

Once it got the additional approval, Janssen rolled out video testimonials of formerly incarcerated individuals receiving injections, including a 31-year-old woman identified only as “Tanara” who was incarcerated after a fight with a neighbor. Tanara explained that the injection allowed her to not worry about missing daily pills for schizophrenia and helped her get a steady job as a peer-support specialist after she was released.

Kaitlin Meiser, a Janssen spokeswoman, said free samples allow doctors to “familiarize themselves with the medicine and for patients to try the medicine and determine if it is the right fit for them.” But she noted that the company does not have any “concerted” efforts to specifically educate correctional doctors through the use of paid speakers or free meals.

Otsuka’s criminal-justice efforts appear more limited. Public records show that psychiatrists who have worked in corrections have received payments or perks from Otsuka, but Robert Murphy, a spokesman, said the company’s marketing does not specifically target the criminal-justice system. It has offered free samples of Abilify Maintena to just one correctional system, in Maricopa County, Arizona—and that was on request. He also said that Otsuka has not made “any payments for meals or speaking fees at any meetings or conferences where the audience was doctors or individuals who work with jails, prisons, or courts.”

Aristada, a relative newcomer in the antipsychotic-injection sector, trails behind Invega Sustenna and Abilify Maintena. As Alkermes seeks to catch up, it has provided the treatment in 40 correctional facilities in 18 states, offering free samples to many of them. And it has paid doctors to speak at criminal-justice conferences about its potential, as well as designing advertisements that depict people reentering society thanks to the shot. Two doctors told me Alkermes paid them to participate in focus-group panels where they were asked by company representatives about how to market the shot to criminal-justice officials.

Mogilner, the Alkermes spokesman, did not answer specific questions about the company’s marketing and sales tactics but noted that they are, to a large degree, no different from other companies’ efforts. He wrote in an email that Aristada can offer people leaving prison or jail “consistent and sustained” treatment during “the often-challenging transition back to the community.”

Corrections officials don’t have to exclusively prescribe Aristada in exchange for free samples, Mogilner added, or continue prescribing the shot after the samples run out. “We work to educate healthcare professionals and other stakeholders with whom they work about the treatment of schizophrenia in diverse settings of care, including criminal justice healthcare settings, community mental health centers, and hospitals,” he wrote. “No one medicine is right for every patient.”

Several health-care officials and practitioners told me that free samples of long-acting antipsychotic shots have helped their patients in the criminal-justice system access helpful drugs that would otherwise be too expensive for them to offer. “Funding is always an issue,” Rachel Waddell, a nurse practitioner who treats inmates in a 662-bed jail in Rapid City, South Dakota, told me. The jail has provided samples of Aristada to 10 inmates but hasn’t accepted payments from drug companies, or perks such as free lunches. “With Alkermes, we don’t have to jump through hoops.”

Officials in Maricopa County, Arizona, have not taken perks or payments from drug companies, but they have accepted free samples of long-acting shots from Janssen, Otsuka, and Alkermes. Grant Phillips, the medical director of Maricopa County’s correctional-health services, said that nearly 120 inmates are on long-acting shots and that they work well. More than half of those are ordered by judges, he said, but judges leave it up to doctors to decide which product is best for their patients. The medication consumes a fifth of the total pharmacy budget for a jail population of about 7,500.

While some jail officials see mostly an upside in drug companies’ marketing efforts, others say it’s more complicated. Jeff Gromer, the former warden of the Minnehaha County Jail in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, said he hasn’t accepted perks or consulting payments, but he has given samples of Aristada to 16 patients since 2018; their symptoms stabilized while on the drug. “When you put someone with anxiety and paranoia in [a jail] environment, it gets hard for them to cope,” Gromer said. “When they can’t cope, there’s behavioral problems such as self-harm or aggression toward inmates or staff, or hiding in their cell.” Still, he’s wary of Alkermes’s efforts to reach patients by marketing to criminal-justice officials overseeing them. “Alkermes’s hope is that the prescription is continued once they’re out of custody, and they’re going to get paid for that,” he said. (Alkermes didn’t comment on Gromer’s characterization.)

Penn, the doctor working with Texas prisons, said his system does not accept samples from drug companies at all and restricts the perks or payments doctors receive. While patients in Texas prisons are sometimes prescribed long-acting antipsychotic drugs—typically as a last resort—Penn expressed concern, noting that “there’s not much literature” on them yet. Though more company-funded studies are emerging, he hasn’t seen enough “good head-to-head studies of the medications,” he said.

Alkermes and other drug companies have marketed not only to jailers but to judges as well. Earlier this year, at a conference for drug- and mental-health-court professionals in Maryland, Alkermes sponsored a closed-door promotional session about using long-acting shots in a court setting. Featured at the session was Richard Jackson, a former psychiatrist at the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility in Ypsilanti, Michigan, and Ernie Glenn, a magistrate in Bexar County, Texas, who had helped defendants in his court get access to long-acting antipsychotic shots. While Glenn had received no payments from Alkermes, the company had paid Jackson more than $250,000 between 2015 and 2018 for speeches, travel and lodging, and meals, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’s open payments database. (Jackson also received $252,608 in payments from Otsuka from 2015 to 2018, and said he has continued receiving payments from drug companies in 2019; it wasn’t immediately clear whether Alkermes was one of them.) The conference program, as in the conference in Nashville, directed people to learn about Aristada at Alkermes’s exhibit booth. “It wouldn’t matter to me if the info was sponsored by one company or all the companies, so long as the info about the medication gets out to the public,” Glenn later told me.

“A lot of people in corrections … they’re not even aware,” Jackson said of long-acting injections. “If you’re not getting educated, you’re not using them, there’s no way it’ll ever be afforded to those prisoners.”

Judge Robin Faber, who presides over a Miami-Dade County court division that aims to divert inmates into mental-health treatment, has not been the target of marketing by Alkermes or any other pharmaceutical firm but said he sees the potential of long-acting drugs in his sixth-floor courtroom. One sweltering afternoon in early September, a young man named Chris Sellers took off his orange cap and slouched into the back of Faber’s courtroom. (Sellers’s name has been changed; Faber, Sellers’s lawyer, and Sellers allowed The Atlantic to sit in the courtroom, which isn’t open to the public, on the condition that his real name not be used.) Faber was reviewing Sellers’s medical records.

“You look good,” Faber said. The first time Faber had met Sellers, several months earlier, Sellers had recently been arrested for stealing a $20 T-shirt. Having looked at his records, along with his initial health assessment from a doctor, Faber felt Sellers’s nonviolent offenses were linked to untreated mental illness, and decided to require treatment instead of incarceration. At the time, to ensure that Sellers received his medication, Faber ordered an involuntary shot for his schizophrenia. Faber believed that Sellers would reoffend without it—and hoped that it would break his cycle of incarceration. As Faber continued reviewing the records, he noticed that Sellers had since received another long-acting shot. “That’s probably helping a lot,” Faber said, agreeing to keep Sellers on the treatment regimen instead of sending him to the Dade County Jail.

After Sellers’s hearing, Faber told me he defers to doctors regarding which medications patients should get. Ernesto Grenier, a psychiatrist at Jackson Health, the medical provider for three of Miami-Dade County’s jails, is often the one choosing those drugs.

When I spoke with Grenier, he told me that Jackson Health prohibits free samples from pharmaceutical companies. But, on occasion, Grenier has listened to pitches from Otsuka, Janssen, and Alkermes. From 2016 to 2018, he accepted food or drinks from the three companies 22 times, for a total of $949.92. He said he does not typically prescribe Aristada—which he considers less proven than some other drugs because it is newer—and dismissed the notion that free lunches or drinks from any drugmaker might have influenced his care. “They all say theirs is the best,” Grenier said. “We choose medication based on the patient.” (Click to Source)


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Your Daily Readings – Verse of the Day – Jeremiah 29:11 – January 5, 2020

Jeremiah 29

And these are the words of the letter which Yirmeyah the prophet sent from Yerushalayim to the rest of the elders of the exile, and to the priests, and to the prophets and to all the people whom Neḇuḵaḏnetstsar had exiled from Yerushalayim to Baḇel –
after Yeḵonyah the sovereign, and the sovereigness mother, and the eunuchs, and the heads of Yehuḏah and Yerushalayim, and the craftsmen, and the smiths had gone into exile from Yerushalayim –
by the hand of El‛asah son of Shaphan, and Gemaryah the son of Ḥilqiyah, whom Tsiḏqiyah sovereign of Yehuḏah sent to Baḇel, to Neḇuḵaḏnetstsar the sovereign of Baḇel, saying,
“Thus said יהוה (Yahweh)of hosts, Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, to all the exiles whom I exiled from Yerushalayim to Baḇel,
Build houses and dwell in them, plant gardens and eat their fruit.
Take wives and bring forth sons and daughters. And take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, and let them bear sons and daughters, and be increased there, and not diminished.
And seek the peace of the city where I have exiled you, and pray to יהוה (Yahweh)for it, for in its peace you have peace.’
“For thus said יהוה (Yahweh)of hosts, Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, ‘Let not your prophets and your diviners who are in your midst deceive you, neither listen to the dreams which you are dreaming.
For they are prophesying falsely to you in My Name. I have not sent them,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh).
“For thus said יהוה(Yahweh), ‘When seventy years are completed, at Baḇel I shall visit you and establish My good word toward you, to bring you back to this place.
For I know the plans I am planning for you,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh), ‘plans of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and an expectancy.
Then you shall call on Me, and shall come and pray to Me, and I shall listen to you.
And you shall seek Me, and shall find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
And I shall be found by you,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh), ’and I shall turn back your captivity, and shall gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, declares יהוה(Yahweh). And I shall bring you back to the place from which I have exiled you.’
“Because you have said, ‘יהוה(Yahweh) has raised up prophets for us in Baḇel’ –
thus said יהוה(Yahweh) concerning the sovereign who sits on the throne of Dawiḏ, concerning all the people who dwell in this city, and concerning your brothers who have not gone out with you into exile,
thus said יהוה(Yahweh) of hosts, ‘See, I am sending on them the sword, the scarcity of food, and the pestilence. And I shall make them like spoilt figs, so spoilt as to be uneatable.
And I shall pursue them with the sword, with scarcity of food, and with pestilence. And I shall make them a horror among all the reigns of the earth, to be a curse, and an astonishment, and a hissing, and a reproach among all the nations where I have driven them.
For they did not heed My words,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh), ‘which I sent to them by My servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them, yet you did not listen,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh).
“You, therefore, hear the word of יהוה(Yahweh), all you exiles whom I have sent from Yerushalayim to Baḇel.
“Thus said יהוה(Yahweh) of hosts, the Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, concerning Aḥaḇ son of Qolayah, and Tsiḏqiyahu son of Ma‛asĕyah, who are prophesying falsely to you in My Name, ‘See, I am giving them into the hand of Neḇuḵaḏretstsar sovereign of Baḇel, and he shall strike them before your eyes.
And because of them all the exiles of Yehuḏah who are in Baḇel shall use a curse, saying, “יהוה(Yahweh) make you like Tsiḏqiyahu and Aḥaḇ, whom the sovereign of Baḇel roasted in the fire,”
because they have done wickedness in Yisra’ĕl, and committed adultery with their neighbours’ wives, and have spoken a word in My Name falsely which I have not commanded them. And I am He who knows, and a witness,’ declares יהוה(Yahweh).
“And speak to Shemayahu the Neḥelamite, saying,
“Thus speaks יהוה(Yahweh) of hosts, the Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, saying, ‘Because you have sent letters in your name to all the people who are at Yerushalayim, to Tsephanyah son of Ma‛asĕyah the priest, and to all the priests, saying,
“יהוה(Yahweh) has made you priest instead of Yehoyaḏa the priest, so that there are overseers in the House of יהוה(Yahweh) over everyone who is mad and makes himself a prophet, that you should put him in the stocks and in the iron collar.
“So why have you not reproved Yirmeyahu of Anathoth who makes himself a prophet to you?
“For he has sent to us in Baḇel, saying, ‘This captivity is long – build houses and dwell in them, and plant gardens and eat their fruit.’ ” ’ ”
And Tsephanyah the priest read this letter in the hearing of Yirmeyahu the prophet.
Then the word of יהוה(Yahweh) came to Yirmeyahu, saying,
“Send to all those in exile, saying, ‘Thus said יהוה(Yahweh) concerning Shemayah the Neḥelamite, “Because Shemayah has prophesied to you, and I have not sent him, and he has made you to trust on falsehood,”
therefore thus said יהוה(Yahweh), “See, I am bringing punishment upon Shemayah the Neḥelamite and his seed: he shall have no one to dwell among this people, nor is he to see the good that I am about to do for My people,” declares יהוה(Yahweh), “because he has spoken apostasy against יהוה(Yahweh).” ’ ”

The Scriptures by Institute For Scripture Research – 2009 Edition


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Your Daily Readings – Verse of the Day – John 3:16 – January 1, 2020

John 3

Christ teaches Nicodemus the necessity of regeneration
And there was a man of the Pharisees, Naḵdimon was his name, a ruler of the Yehuḏim.  This one came to יהושע (Yeshua/Jesus) by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from Elohim, for no one is able to do these signs You do if Elohim is not with him.”
יהושע (Yeshua/Jesus) answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born from above, he is unable to seea the reign of Elohim.”
Naḵdimon said to Him, “How is a man able to be born when he is old? Is he able to enter into his mother’s womb a second time and be born?”
יהושע (Yeshua/Jesus)answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he is unable to enter into the reign of Elohim. “That which has been born of the flesh is flesh, and that which has been born of the Spirit is spirit.  “Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You have to be born from above.’  “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who has been born of the Spirit.”
Naḵdimon answered and said to Him, “How is it possible for this to take place?”
יהושע (Yeshua/Jesus)answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Yisra’ĕl, and do not know this? “Truly, truly, I say to you, We speak what We know and witness what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. “If you do not believe when I spoke to you about earthly matters, how are you going to believe when I speak to you about the heavenly matters?
“And no one has gone up into the heaven except He who came down from the heaven – the Son of Aḏam.
of faith in his death
“And as Mosheh lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so the Son of Aḏam has to be lifted up, so that whoever is believing in Him should not perish but possess everlasting life.
the great love of God towards the world
“For Elohim so loved the world that He gave His only brought-forth Son, so that everyone who believes in Him should not perish but possess everlasting life.  “For Elohim did not send His Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
and the condemnation for unbelief
“He who believes in Him is not judged, but he who does not believe is judged already, because he has not believed in the Name of the only brought-forth Son of Elohim. “And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light, for their works were wicked. “For everyone who is practising evil matters hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. “But the one doing the truth comes to the light, so that his works are clearly seen, that they have been wrought in Elohim.”
Jesus baptizes in Judea
After this, יהושע (Yeshua/Jesus)and His taught ones came into the land of Yehuḏah, and He remained there with them, and was immersing.
The baptism, witness, and doctrine of John concerning Christ
And Yoḥanan was also immersing in Ayin near Salim, because there was plenty of water there. And they were coming and were being immersed, for Yoḥanan had not yet been put into prison.
Then a dispute arose between some of Yoḥanan’s taught ones and the Yehuḏim about cleansing, and they came to Yoḥanan and said to him, “Rabbi, He who was with you beyond the Yardĕn, to whom you have witnessed, see, He is immersing, and all are coming to Him!”
Yoḥanan answered and said, “No man is able to receive any matter unless it is given to him from the heaven. “You yourselves are witnesses for me that I said, ‘I am not the Messiah but I am sent ahead of Him.’ “He that has the bride is the bridegroom, but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the voice of the bridegroom. So this joy of mine is complete. “It is right for Him to increase, but me to decrease.  “He who comes from above is over all, he who is from the earth is of the earth and speaks of the earth. He who comes from the heaven is over all. “And what He has seen and heard, that He witnesses. And no one receives His witness. “He who receives His witness has set his seal that Elohim is true. “For He whom Elohim has sent speaks the Words of Elohim, for Elohim does not give the Spirit by measure. “The Father loves the Son, and has given all into His hand. “He who believes in the Son possesses everlasting life, but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of Elohim remains on him.”

(The Scriptures by Institute For Scripture Research – 2009 Edition)


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