Thursday, April 29, 2021

This Burleson Cousin Disagrees About Uncle Rufus

My name is Wade Burleson. I share a great-grandparent (4x) with Dr. Rufus C. Burleson, the two-time President of Baylor University (1851-1861, 1886-1897) and the man responsible for moving Baylor University to Waco, Texas.

Recently, Baylor University’s Commission on Historic Campus Representations recommended that the Baylor campus statue of Rufus Burleson be relocated and the name of Burleson Quadrangle be changed. Baylor has succumbed to the "cancel culture" Marxist movement of Intersectionality and Critical Race Theory. My wife and I met while attending Baylor University, and we would often sit on the benches positioned in Burleson Quadrangle in the evenings talking. 

Two of my distant cousins, Blake and Burt Burleson, both affiliated with Baylor University and the Board of Contributors, wrote "a letter to Uncle Rufus" defending Baylor's decision. I respect my cousins and know they have Christian pastoral hearts and wish to do what is best for the school and for people in general, but I believe affirming the "cancel culture" movement is like a doctor who cuts off the leg of his only child because his brother's child is an amputee and the doctor wishes to be sympathetic with family.

God made peoples from all nations of one blood. We are family. Racism is wrong. But to "remove statues," and "erase the past" because of the sins of our fathers, while consenting to the systemic deconstruction of America's political, religious, and educational institutions, is similar to the citizens of Troy welcoming the Trojan Horse within their walls. What seems innocent, peaceable, and just, is in reality the means by which our nation will be destroyed from within. 

In a friendly spirit of familial love and respect, I disagree with my Burleson cousins' letter affirming canceling Rufus C. Burleson's existence at Baylor University. Their letter is in italics, one paragraph at a time, with my response below each paragraph.


(Burt and Blake write): For nearly 50 years now, we have walked past your statue in Burleson Quadrangle with pride in your providential role (and that of Aunt Georgia) in leading Baylor University and the State of Texas in its early days. Because of your visionary leadership in establishing higher education west of the Mississippi, hundreds of thousands of men and women have graduated from this, the oldest university in continuous existence in Texas. For 176 years Baylor graduates have served church and state as doctors, lawyers, nurses, educators, mayors, legislators, pastors, social workers, entrepreneurs, artists and scientists, and through hundreds of other professions. When Texas hero Sam Houston became a Christian, he asked you — his friend and pastor — to baptize him. In our Baylor offices hangs a painting of that auspicious occasion, undertaken by Dallas artist Erwin Hearne, whose work often focused on Baptists and their quest for religious liberty in America. As we pray daily with our students, staff, faculty and parents beneath that painting, we are often aware of your presence. When the State of Texas honored you and Aunt Georgia with historical markers in 2009, we had the privilege to unveil those tributes.

(Wade Burleson writes): Uncle Rufus, I echo all that my two cousins have written. I and am grateful for your visionary leadership in establishing higher education in Texas, as well as your personal ministry to General Sam Houston. The State of Texas was right in honoring you and Aunt Georgia with historical markers in 2009, and my cousins were also right in unveiling those tributes. What’s happened during these last twelve years?

(Burt and Blake write): With you as our beacon, we were inspired to become Baptist pastors, chaplains, missionaries and educators. Today, we can see your statue through our office windows. When we preach from the Bible in Waco Hall’s chapel services and teach about it in Tidwell Bible Building classrooms, we are reminded that that book — proclaiming that God cares equally for all — is held in the hand of your statue in Burleson Quadrangle. We’ve drawn inspiration from you and Aunt Georgia for your commitment to the education of women. Thank you for admitting women to Baylor during a time when they were not even allowed to vote. Each day when we walk by Georgia Burleson Hall and read the words “Dedicated to Female Education and Piety” inscribed on the cornerstone, we are reminded to treat all of our students with dignity and equality.

(Wade Burleson writes): I, too, honor all that you did for women in education. Your understanding that leadership is based on gifting, not gender, and that women should be provided every educational opportunity afforded to men, though novel in your day, is now standard practice in our day. Thank you.

(Burt and Blake write): While no black student graduated from Baylor until 1968, long after you had left us (in 1901), we thought that you must have led the way in a campaign to lift African Americans out of an intellectual wasteland imposed on them by slavery since, after the Civil War, you rode on horseback all over Texas giving speeches to encourage towns to support free public education that included the children of newly freed slaves. And you helped raise money to establish Marshall-based Bishop College for African Americans in 1881. Bishop College provided many African Americans — whose parents and grandparents had been forbidden under slavery laws to even read the very Bible in your statue’s hand — with a post-secondary education. So, it is with profound sadness that we write you today — you who are now beyond the veil — having recently learned more about your time on our campus and your role in Texas politics after the Civil War.

(Wade Burleson writes): My cousins, Uncle Rufus, rightly acknowledge the effort you put into ensuring the educational opportunities for freed slaves. Though a product of your time, you rose above the prevailing prejudice and did all you could to assist our black brothers and sisters. Again, "Thank you!" I, too, have known of your role in Texas politics after the Civil War, but unlike my cousins, I am not as perturbed about politics in the 1860s and 1870s. As Washington Irving once said, "The idol of today pushes the hero of yesterday out of our recollection; and will, in turn, be supplanted by his successor of tomorrow." 

(Burt and Black write):  We were born in the 1950s into a family and an East Texas city that held racist views about African Americans, views that we now know you intentionally and systematically helped to advance in Waco and beyond. As we grew into adults and read the Bible more carefully, we abandoned the racist views that we had been taught from family members, friends, neighbors, schoolteachers, pastors, business leaders and elected officials. Now we know that through your sermons, writings and public statements you helped to ensure that generations of African Americans were relegated to second-class citizenship. You carried your Bible with you as you traveled as chaplain for the Fifteenth Texas Infantry Regiment, Company B, during the Civil War. And you encouraged Baylor students and alumni to join the Confederacy in that bloody fight. More than 250 Baylor Bears heeded your call and joined the South’s campaign to keep human beings enslaved, presumably forever. And we now know that your efforts to raise money for Bishop College were done so that once black students were educated, they could be sent back to Africa! Furthermore, it is documented that you owned a slave, a man named Elias.

(Wade Burleson writes): I would ask that you forgive your nephews for their unintentional impertinence. George Washington owned slaves. Thomas Jefferson owned slaves. 17 of the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention owned a total of about 1,400 slaves. Of the first 12 U.S. presidents, eight were slave owners. These men are our nation's heroes. Do we do remove and hide the Constitution for the sins of our Founding Fathers? Do we demolish the Republic? Do we call for the overthrow of the Supreme Court? Yes, our Founding Fathers and our fathers made awful mistakes, but the system established by our Founding Fathers made the United States "The Land of Opportunity" for all people. Yes, Uncle Rufus, you fought a Civil War that ended slavery, and you were on the losing side (as an aside, I thank the Good Lord for that point). People ought to be taught your sins but to hold people today accountable for your sins of 170 years ago is an act being used by neo-Marxists to tear apart our country and remove our foundations. To divide and conquer is part of the art of war, and our enemies look on the United States with glee as they watch citizens seek to destroy the United States' culture and heritage.  My cousins mean well, but they don't see that when we "erase America's past," we "destroy America's future." Teach the past and learn from it. 

(Blake and Burt write): Forgive us, dear Uncle, but we must ask you how you could have used the Bible to humiliate and to subjugate fellow human beings. How could you promote the “Lost Cause” — the concept of divinely inspired white nationalism — once the war ended? Because of your revisionist history, we were taught in school in the 1970s that the war had nothing to do with slavery. We read in state-sanctioned textbooks that the Civil War was fought over “states’ rights.” Regrettably, some schoolbooks in the South still indoctrinate our children with these lies. By your hand and others like you, millions of African Americans were held in educational, political and economic bondage for much of the 20th century. Forgive us, dear Uncle, but we must ask: How could you have read the same Bible as we read, yet preach what you did?

(Wade Burleson writes): Forgive me, dear Uncle, but I think I know the answer on how you could use the Bible to "subjugate fellow human beings" (eg 'condone slavery') and how you could promote the "Lost Cause." I don't mean to presume, but I think after the LORD called you home in death, He probably showed you the mistake you made in interpreting the Bible. Nowhere in the Bible does Jesus Christ or the prophets call for "white" or "Jewish" supremacy. On the contrary, Jesus is "the Savior of the world," and the prophets remind us that the LORD declares: "Are you not all as children of the Ethiopians unto me. Have not I brought up Israel out of the land of Egypt? and the Philistines from Caphtor, and the Syrians from Kir?" (Amos 9:7). God establishes the boundaries of the nations, and all the nations are His. Racism is wrong, but America's national identity built on our shared values, culture, and pride in "God and country" is something we ought never to take for granted. I cannot - I will not - stand by as people attempt to destroy America and our political, religious, and educational institutions. Yes, Uncle Rufus, you made mistakes. But we have learned from those mistakes and made progress. I apologize to you for the errors being made by this generation. My hope is that we awake to our errors before it is too late.

(Blake and Burt write): Our hearts are heavy as we write what we now know to be a more complete truth about our family’s past. Perhaps we should have taken the time long ago to explore fully our history and Baylor’s history. We pray it’s not too late to make amends to our African American brothers and sisters and to all who have suffered from this sinful scourge of slavery, racism, segregation and discrimination.

(Wade Burleson writes:) Uncle Rufus, though my cousins mean well, please forgive them for not practicing Christian grace. If we removed the photograph of all our loved ones who have caused hurt in us and others, there would be no family photos left on the wall. Our generation is soft.  I'm concerned that soon the United States of America could be at war with outside enemies who want nothing more than to divide us from within before they seek to conquer us from without. I'm doing all I can to wake up the citizens of the United States before it's too late. Blessings, Uncle Rufus, and we Burleson cousins look forward to seeing you again and being as transparent about our sins as we are about yours. 

17 Tweets that Teach How to Resist CRT Activists

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand: Oklahoma HB 1775 to Ban Critical Race Theory

On June 16, 1858, Abraham Lincoln gave his famous House Divided Speech. Lincoln, running for the United States Senate against incumbent Senator Stephen A. Douglas, argued that the only way the United States could remain in union with each other was for there to be only one position on slavery - its abolishment. The southern States wished to keep slavery and the northern states wished to abolish it. The United States was divided. Lincoln famously said, "A house divided against itself cannot stand." 

It is this Lincoln speech that is remembered most. Reflecting on it years later, Lincoln's law partner William Herndon  said:

"Lincoln as a statesman, and political philosopher, announced an eternal truth -- not only as broad as America, but one that covers the world."

Jesus, the Eternal truth-teller, originally taught us that "a house cannot be divided and stand" (Matthew 12:22-28; Mark 3:25 Luke 11:14-18). 

Critical Race Theory seeks to divide the United States of America. With the premise that "race is not biologically real but is socially constructed," CRT advocates wish to tear down all American institutions that were established by our Founding Fathers. This de-construction includes the judicial system (The Supreme Court), police and law enforcement agencies, religious institutions, and the Republic itself (e.g. the Electoral College, the separation of powers, etc.).

As Ben Shapiro recently tweeted

We no longer have a culture and a counter-culture. We have an anti-culture, designed at tearing down all traditions and institutions.

On April 20, 2021, members of the Oklahoma Senate, by a vote of 38-9, overwhelmingly approved House Bill 1775, which prevents schools in Oklahoma from "mandating coursework based on Marxist-derived critical race theory." 

Today, April 28, 2021, members of the Oklahoma House of Representatives will have an opportunity to vote on House Bill 1775 to make it law. However, Speaker of the House Charles McCall is receiving pressure to not let House Bill 1775 make it to the floor for a House vote. There's murmuring that McCall and other Oklahoma House Leadership may be caving to outside (of Oklahoma) forces.

This is a moral issue for the United States of America. Our nation's future is at stake. We cannot be the land of opportunity and the land of the free with Marxism being taught in our public schools. 

Contact Speaker Charles McCall and let your voice be heard - Speaker McCall's office number is (405) 557-7412

Monday, April 26, 2021

Courage Is the Mother of All Other Virtues in Life

Last night Rachelle and I watched national news for the first time in a long time. The lead story was about "the anxiety and fear Americans feel returning to work after Covid-19." After we watched the story, my wife turned to me and said, "This nation is full of cupcakes."

I believe there is a correlation in our nation between courage and tyranny: Tyranny accentuates as courage dissipates. 

Only when a nation's people are renowned for their courage (think, The Greatest Generation) will that nation be strong enough to rebuff government tyranny.

Aristotle said that courage is the mother of the virtues because it makes all the other virtues possible.  C.S. Lewis wrote
“Courage is not just one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point.”
Living in a free country, not at war with other nations, is of enormous value. However, living in such a country is not something that happens on its own. A country's government cannot declare its people free and at peace.  The citizens must each be dedicated to defending the principles of freedom in both small and large ways with personal courage, even if that means placing ourselves in personal danger, as did the Greatest Generation when fighting the Nazis. 

This current pandemic, in the grand scheme of world history, is insignificant. If that upsets you, you should familiarize yourself with past generations and the trials they faced with individual courage and valor. For example, for those who lived in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the expectation was the total annihilation of the populace through nuclear war. 

That makes Covid-19 look like a common cold. 

C.S. Lewis lived his adult life under the threat of nuclear annihilation. In his 1948 essay, “On Living in an Atomic Age,” Lewis wrote some wisdom for America's cupcakes in 2020:
 “If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things – praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts – not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about bombs. They may break our bodies but they need not dominate our minds.”

 "Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid" (Deuteronomy 31:6).

Courage is an essential virtue for a free society.

Perhaps this explains why cowardice seems so prevalent in our country right now. 

Yes, there is a possibility that Covid-19 will kill you or a family member. Yes, you may die. But take C.S. Lewis' advice. Don't huddle like frightened sheep and think about dying. Covid may break your body, but it need not dominate your mind.

Get on with your life. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Universities Are Battlegrounds for America's Future - Oklahoma University and Mandatory Conformity

 "Conformity is the enemy of conscience" - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr

This week, the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma, the university near and dear to my family, received an appropriate "hand slap" from The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) and the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.

The Higher Learning Commission may choose harsher treatment for Oklahoma University in the future. 

OU is accused of forcing conformity of staff and students to certain moral, political, and cultural positions that the individual staff member or student could not support. Further, the administration of OU is accused of attempting to cover up the forcible attempts to program the thinking of students and faculty by refusing to share its "diversity training materials" with the press.

German national officials went before international tribunals at Nuremberg from 1945-1949 for their attempts to program the German populace "to think a certain way" during the 1930s. These German government officials were convicted for their efforts to punish individual Germans who refused to affirm and acquiesce to German nationalist "group think." 

The atmosphere at the University of Oklahoma  - as well as other colleges and universities around the United States - is beginning to look a great deal like Germany did in the 1930s. 

According to an editorial written by Jonathan Small, President of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, the University of Oklahoma crossed the line of "mandatory diversity training" by enforcing students or staff to endorse specific viewpoints during the university's mandatory diversity training program.

For example, in one part of the training ('re-education?'), a student is shown a video of a fellow student saying that he is "tired of all this transgender stuff." The student watching the video is then given various choices to express his or her feelings including, "I agree. Political correctness can be so tiring." 

If the student chooses, "I agree. Political correctness can be so tiring," then that student is not allowed to proceed in the course. A personal message is sent instead: "You seem upset. What's the matter?" After answering a few more questions, the university will then take the student back to the beginning of the diversity training course and REPEAT the video that the student has already watched. The course cannot be completed until the student gives those answers deemed "appropriate" by the university.

In other words, the University of Oklahoma is telling students how they should feel about transgender advocacy, as well as other current cultural issues.

The question that every Oklahoman should be asking is simple: 

"Why is OU telling students and faculty the 'correct' or 'right' way to feel about moral issues?"

As Jonathan Small writes: 

"It's one thing for college to be a place where students are exposed to opinions different than those held by their families, and something else altogether to force students to embrace beliefs they do not hold."  

Attempts to suppress free thought, free speech, and free choice at America's public universities are real.

A secularist will tell a Chrisitan: "Go to a private university and pay tuition if you want to be taught Christian values." Very well and good. But this Christian will tell a secularist: "I will not stand by as my tax dollars are used at my state public university to demand that everyone believe a certain way." There is more than one religion, and demands that my kids conform to yours is unacceptable.

Our state's public university's attempt for all its faculty and students to affirm an amoral, atheistic philosophy must be - and is being - challenged legally.  For when diversity training turns into a conformity test, the university has become the enemy of conscience and culture. 

Monday, April 12, 2021

The Underground Church Coming to America Soon

Over 200 law enforcement officers in dozens of police vehicles blocked entrances to the parking lot of GraceLife Church in Edmonton, Canada, on Wednesday morning, April 7, 2021, building a fence around the building. The congregation has met normally since summer 2020, despite requirements that church gatherings limit capacity, require masks, and practice social distancing.

Over the last eleven months, the Canadian provincial health department conducted 18 inspections and fined the church dozens of times for their refusal to comply with various government orders, including limited seating and no singing. Pastor James Coates was arrested and spent a month in jail. He steadfastly refused to sign a document stating he would obey the government's compulsory health regulations.

The church has issued a statement giving its rationale for disobeying the government:
"We are gravely concerned that COVID-19 is being used to fundamentally alter society and strip us all of our civil liberties. By the time the so-called “pandemic” is over, if it is ever permitted to be over, Albertans will be utterly reliant on government, instead of free, prosperous, and independent. As such, we believe love for our neighbor demands that we exercise our civil liberties... Many Albertans are afraid and are convinced of the efficacy of government lockdowns for two reasons: misinformation and fearmongering. The media has so pounded the COVID-19 drum since the “pandemic” began, almost exclusively emphasizing caseload and deaths, that people are fearful. So fearful, in fact, they have been convinced that yielding up their civil liberties to the government is in their best interests. It is difficult to have not lost confidence in the mainstream media. It would seem as though journalism is on life-support in our province. The media should be made up of the most thorough, discerning, and investigative people in our society. Instead, many of them seem to be serving an ideological agenda. Now more than ever, it is vital that Albertans exercise discernment when listening to the mainstream media.

What do we believe people should do? We believe they should responsibly return to their lives. Churches should open, businesses should open, families and friends should come together around meals, and people should begin to exercise their civil liberties again. Otherwise, we may not get them back. In fact, some say we are on the cusp of reaching the point of no return. Protect the vulnerable, exercise reasonable precautions, but begin to live your lives again."

Regardless of one's agreement with the position of the church, every single Christian should be concerned over the heavy-handedness of the Canadian government. 

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, which represents GraceLife and its pastor James Coates, said the move to barricade private church property prevents citizens from “exercising their Charter freedoms of peaceful assembly, association, and worship.”

If Americans don't sit up and pay attention to what is happening to our neighbors to the north, we may end up finding ourselves worshiping in the underground church in the United States sooner than we could ever imagine.

The video below is last Sunday's message from Pastor Coates. He preached in an undisclosed location and streamed it LIVE with 'faces in the congregation blurred out' to keep them from being identified by the state police. 

This is happening in Canada.

Tuesday, April 06, 2021

Baylor Wins and I Remember Coach Dave Bliss

Guest Speaker: Dave Bliss – Fall To Grace from Emmanuel Enid on Vimeo.

Last night, the Baylor Bears won the NCAA Men's Basketball National Championship.

Rachelle and I met when we were students at Baylor University, just before the fall semester on Friday, August 21, 1981, on a blind date in the cafeteria of Collins Hall

One of my ancestors, Rufus C. Burleson (1823-1901), was the first President of Baylor University and he moved Baylor from Independence, Texas, to Waco, Texas. Rufus also baptized General Sam Houston, the man after whom the city of Houston (Tx) is named,  in the "living waters" of Little Rocky Creek near Independence Baptist Church where Rufus served as pastor. 

I can tell you all kinds of stories about Baylor - anecdotal, personal, and ancestral. 

But after the Baylor Bears won the national championship last night, my thoughts were directed toward the Coach of the Baylor Bears just prior to their superb current coach, Scott Drew

That coach's name is David Bliss

David made all kinds of mistakes at Baylor University. He was fired because of his moral transgressions, including lying, covering up facts about the murder of one of his players, and a host of other unethical behaviors. 

David Bliss's name is not spoken with admiration by most.

But I consider Coach Bliss a friend. He's spoken at Emmanuel Enid (see above video). Rachelle and I had a private lunch with him at our favorite Mexican restaurant, and we sensed humility and grace from a man ridiculed by all who don't know him.

Dave is the real deal. 

David Bliss has written a book called Fall to Grace. It's an excellent biography of how sin breaks us, but God's grace delivers us. 

SHOWTIME has a documentary on the Baylor basketball scandal during Dave Bliss's tenure as coach. The documentary is called DISGRACED.  

Dave's book is called FALL TO GRACE

Someone left a Review on David's book that said:
 "Anyone who watches the Showtime documentary, "Disgraced," would know what an odious and contemptible liar Dave Bliss is. And it wasn't just "one mistake." Google the man and you will see that lies and dishonesty follow him wherever he goes. He is a repulsive individual who, I'm sure, is lying and trying to pull the wool over someone's eyes as we speak, including anyone stupid enough to buy this book. Dave Bliss is an abomination."

I propose that until you understand failure, you'll never comprehend grace. Until you are DISGRACED, you'll never FALL TO GRACE.

Succeeding on the court of basketball or the court of public opinion is not the end-all. 

Discovering God's grace in Jesus Christ is. A.W. Tozer once said.

"The man who is elated by success and is cast down by failure is still a carnal man. At best his fruit will have a worm in it."

Last night I thought of former Coach Dave Bliss because God has taken the worm out of Dave's apple. 

God's grace has a way of putting success and failure into perspective. 

Friday, April 02, 2021

Buck vs. Bell, Forced Vaccinations, and Social Hell

Henning Jacobson
I have a close friend with whom I work out every morning. He's a medical doctor, Ph.D. research scientist, and a fellow at the National Institutes of Health. He and Dr. Faucci are friends and co-workers. My friend has had his vaccination for Covid-19, has convinced me that the new RNA vaccinations are safe, and has been the reason I encourage all my senior adult friends to get a vaccination. 

I will not be vaccinated for Covid-19.

And my refusal has nothing to do with fear, safety, or concerns over my physical well-being (or yours). I've had Covid. I have developed natural immunity. I will probably have it again (as will you). If I get sick ("ill-at-ease," the definition of dis-ease), I will do my part to keep my distance from you. I also, as always, respect your decision to vaccinate. I am not an anti-vaccination person.

But I am against forcible vaccinations, mandated by the government, with punishments for those who refuse. 

Allow me to tell you why I am convicted to say "No!" to government-mandated vaccinations. 

In 1902, a Swedish American pastor named Henning Jacobson refused to get the smallpox vaccine and he also refused to pay the $5.00 fine (equivalent to $100 today). 

He was charged with a crime and his case went all the way to the United States Supreme Court where the Jacobson v. Massachusetts decision became a landmark case. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the government stating that the government could mandate vaccination because "the collective good sometimes outweighs individual rights."

So far, so good.

Carrie Buck and Her Mother
However, nearly two decades later, the United States Supreme Court issued a ruling in Buck vs. Bell that declared the government has the right and ability to forcibly sterilize women for the public good. 

Buck v. Bell revolved around a woman named Carrie Buck. Born in 1906, one year after the Supreme Court ruled on the Henning Jacobson vaccination case, Carrie Buck was just 3 years old when her mom, Emma Buck, was institutionalized for being “feeble-minded” and “sexually promiscuous.”

Carrie's dad was absent, so child welfare government officials put Carrie in foster care with a family called Dobbs. Carrie stayed with the Dobbs for 14 years until, one day, she learned that she was pregnant. Carrie told welfare workers that the Dobbses’ nephew had raped her. 

But the Dodd's family argued that Carrie was mentally unstable, just like her birth mother, and so the Dobbs put Carrie in an institution—the same one where her mom was.

Carrie's baby, named Vivian, was born in 1924.

In the year that baby Vivian was born, the state of Virginia passed a law that allowed the government to forcibly sterilize people who were "afflicted with hereditary forms of insanity that are recurrent.”

The Virginia institution that housed Carrie and Emma Buck chose Carrie as the first woman to be forcibly sterilized by the government. Carrie sued to protect herself. The Buck vs. Bell case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. 

Oliver Wendell Holmes
Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
 ruled in favor of the government's forcible sterilization of women by famously saying: 
“Three generations of imbeciles are enough.”

The ONLY case cited in the majority opinion of Buck vs. Bell was the ruling against Pastor Henning Jaccobson's liberty to refuse vaccination in Jacobson v. Massachusetts

Give the government an inch of your physical liberty and the government may take a eugenics mile of your life. Ask the Jews who lived in Germany during the 1930s and 1940s or the Muslims who live in China today. 

I freely support your decision to be vaccinated and encourage all my friends to do so. But I state clearly to you, "Be careful that you do not judge or condemn me or anyone else for refusing to be vaccinated. We may actually be saving the lives of your children and grandchildren in a generation."

My reason to refuse a forced vaccination is not fear, nor a lack of scientific knowledge, nor a belief that vaccinations are evil.

I am refusing a Covid-19 vaccination in honor of a young lady named Carrie Buck who was raped and then forced by the government to be sterilized for the public good. I'll determine for myself what the "public good" actually is, and in my view, the liberty of individuals to stand against government mandates is a much more courageous and prescient act than acquiescence to government overreach.

Once you hand to the government control of your body,  you place the government in the position of God. Everyone should feel free to choose a vaccination because it is an individual choice for one's own health. But we must safeguard liberty to dissent against government forces or you'll be Carrie Buck one day.

Government isn't God, and nobody should trust its powers, its purpose, or its provisions. A limited state keeps our liberty safe.

I respect your right to vaccinate. Please respect my right to refuse. 

It's for the public good. 

Thursday, April 01, 2021

I'm a Numbers Guy and 02.02.2022 Is My Number

Istoria's Ministry Headquarters, Enid, Oklahoma
Several weeks ago I announced my intention to retire as Lead Pastor of Emmanuel Enid on February 2, 2022 (next year).

I believe in God's sovereignty and providence so much that I intentionally use the phrase "intention to retire." The LORD could call me home in death before I reach the retirement date. Nuclear war with Korea, a pulse bomb from China, or a societal collapse in the United States may shut the doors of the 501(c)-3 called Emmanuel Enid before I retire in February 2022.

My wife will tell you, "Wade is absolutely the most positive person you will ever meet." In fact, I confess, I am "over-the-top" positive. I have very strong feelings about what is coming for our country (a collapse), but in my mind, it is the "best thing that could ever happen to the United States." 

There is something about national poverty, international wars, and societal desolation that drives people to trust God and not the government. A revival of faith in YHWH occurred in Assyria (Ninevah) during the 9th century B.C. through the collapse of Assyrian culture and the prophetic preaching of Jonah. A revival dawned on the people of Judah in 701 B.C. after the collapse of Judean wealth in the face of national calamity accompanied by the preaching of Isaiah. A revival enlivened God's people in Babylon when they found a renewed faith in YHWH while they served Nebuchadnezzar and the mighty Babylonians as their slaves for 70 years (586 B.C. - 516 B.C.). 

Bad things happen to good people in order that bad people might trust a good God and become His people.

Let's never waste our national sorrows. Bad things are coming for the United States of America, but I've never been more excited to be alive than I am right now in 2021.  I am stepping down next year from "pastoral ministry" in the institutional church so that I might concentrate on cultural and societal ministry in a collapsing nation. 

Wade and Rachelle Burleson
The people of Emmanuel Enid called me to be their "Lead Servant (Pastor)" on Sunday, 02.02.1992. They have elected a stellar Pastor Search Committee that intends to have a new Lead Pastor at Emmanuel Enid by 02.02.2022. Thirty years is a long time to serve a church, but any success we've had at Emmanuel Enid is due to the people of Emmanuel. Last Sunday's Enid News and Eagle article expressed well my feelings for the people of Emmanuel Enid. They are like family to Rachelle and me, and Emmanuel Enid will continue to be our church home. 

My ministry will continue beyond 2022. In 2012, Rachelle and I and a group of friends founded a non-profit called Istoria Ministries. Istoria is a Greek word that means "inquiry" and it is the root word from which we get our English word "history." I believe we must inquire into our historical and biblical past for potent answers to the problems we face today. Rachelle and I are spending the next several months working on the new website, the new building, and the new path the LORD has placed before us. 

After 02.02.2022, I will shift focus. My primary goal will be to write books and to produce weekly video/audio podcasts. Rachelle and I will also continue to periodically teach and upload to the Internet special series on marriage, family, and the Scriptures. My intention is to spotlight issues that are typically never addressed through an institutional church.  I will clearly and transparently address the cultural, moral, and social pitfalls we face as Christians in the United States of America. Of course, one might say that addressing those issues is "the role of the pastor," but in my experience, today's culture dismisses pastors as "irrelevant." 

The message of the church of Jesus Christ is foundational to our society, but our society has fundamentally turned away from the church of Jesus Christ.  Istoria will have a broader social media platform that will allow me to be "unchained" so to speak. That is probably an uncomfortable thought to some who already think I am "unchained." To be candid, I've held back. After 02.02.2022, there will be no "holding back." 

Rachelle and I have purchased a building on the historic U.S. Highway 81 that runs through the heart of Enid, Oklahoma. U.S. Highway 81 is the route of the First Secret Mission of the Civil War, and the old historic Chisholm Trail, which actually should be called Black Beaver's Trail. It is called Van Buren Street in Enid, in honor of United States President Martin Van Buren. The building's address is 801 S. Van Buren. Our friend Darrel Bundy has stepped up big time in coordinating all the remodeling. Brad Classen (KC Electric), David Lawrence and Jason Tyman (Dense Mechanical), Chad Forbeck (E-Towne Properties), Kenny Walker (friend and carpenter deluxe), Clint Watkins (Design), Kyle and Carol Williams (Istoria board members), and a host of other friends have been invaluable encouragement to Rachelle and me in helping us get this project underway.

This is a huge step of faith for Rachelle and me. We are going from "two salaries" to just one (Rachelle's). However, playing it safe solves nothing. We sense God's call and we have said "Yes!" to His purpose for our lives as we live out the last quarter of our lives on this earth. 

All the people of Emmanuel (and Enid) know of my decision, but this little post is to make readers of my blog aware of the changes that will be coming on 02.02.2022.