- The Washington Times - Friday, December 31, 1999

'Vile' hit
"The world's most controversial hit single of 1999 is a recording of the Lord's Prayer. Veteran singer Cliff Richard … released a song called 'Millennium Prayer,' which is 'Our Father' set to a synth-orchestral rendition of 'Auld Lang Syne.' …
"Critics trashed both the song and the singer, and many radio stations refused to play it but it still hit No. 1 on the British charts at the start of December.
"George Michael, the bisexual pop star who recorded the immortal 'I Want Your Sex,' took to the airwaves, calling the song 'vile' ….
"A century of rock 'n' roll rebellion in pop music closes off with the Lord's Prayer."
Chris Stamper, writing on "The Lord's Prayer, Counter-Cultural in Britain," in the Dec. 25 issue of World

Shotgun weddings
"Few Americans would dispute a father's obligation to provide for his children. Throughout American history, any man who bore the title father bore also the title of provider… . Fathers thus counted this obligation to provide for their wife and children as the most important and ennobling duty (next to conjugal fidelity) accepted through the vows pronounced at marriage.
"It was because of this perceived link between wedlock and a man's obligation to act as a provider that in the case of an out-of-wedlock pregnancy, the extended family and local community often pressured the responsible young man into a shotgun wedding. Marriage made the young man publicly take upon himself the duty to provide for the unborn child and its mother… . The traditional horror of illegitimacy sprang in large part from a deep anxiety about the fate of an infant who was, in social identity, no man's child. Since no man had ever pledged to provide for that child by entering into wedding vows, the future of the child and its mother teetered in uncertainty."
Bryce Christensen, writing on "Deadbeat Dads or Fleeced Fathers?" in the January issue of the Family in America

President Nero
"[Joe] Lockhart, the official White House spokesman, stated … that the evangelical Christian notion of carrying out the Great Commission and spreading Christianity … equates with perpetuating 'ancient religious hatred.'
"In effect, the Clinton administration is now on record as believing that the practice of biblical Christianity is tantamount to a 'hate crime.'
"It might surprise some people to learn that this is not a new idea. Americans are not noted for their historical memory. But Christians were among the Roman Empire's most persecuted victims. It's interesting to know why … .
"The first-century Roman historian Cornelius Tacitus provides some insight in his classic work, 'Annals.'
"Here's a translated excerpt … describing Emperor Nero's reaction to the burning of Rome:
" 'But all human efforts, all the lavish gifts of the emperor, and the propitations of the gods, did not banish the sinister belief that the conflagration was the result of an order. Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace… . Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths… .'
"Notice that the Christians were charged with 'hatred of mankind.' Isn't that interesting? They were executed for a 'hate crime.' This is where it all began. And look who's talking about picking up the torch of persecution today the Clinton administration."
Joseph Farah, writing on "Clinton and Nero," a Wednesday posting on www.worldnetdaily.com

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