Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Oklahoma Couple Wins Fight Over Bible Signs

click to read full story from News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- A Tulsa couple says it does pay to fight Tulsa City Hall. They were told signs at their business violated city ordinance, but they appealed and won Tuesday.

They say it was never about a city ordinance for them, it was about religious freedom.

The sign squabble started because the couple, who sell mobile homes, wrapped the ends of some of them with large pictures that contained a Bible verse and a picture of a family reading a Bible.

The city didn't get complaints, but sign inspectors told the couple the signs required a permit. The city of Tulsa Board of Adjustment didn't agree.

Mobile homes need plastic around the ends to keep them protected from the weather. Over time, that plastic can rip and tear and looks pretty ugly.

So, Mike and Brenda Harrison decided to replace it with wraps, as a way to make it more attractive and to share their Christian beliefs.

"The intent was to promote what I feel is important. I mentioned to a lot of folks that if someone saw a picture of a family reading a Bible, they might think, I want to sit down and do that," said Mike Harrison, LifeWay Mobile Homes.

City sign inspectors say the wraps were promotional business signs that draw attention to the business, so require a permit.

The Harrisons' attorney argued the wraps don't promote the business because there's no company logo, no price, no anything about the mobile home business on them.

"It's simply a photograph promoting Mr. Harrison's belief in God, nothing else," said Brad Barron, Harrisons' Attorney.

The inspectors argued even signs promoting non-commercial items must meet size limitations. After an hour long discussion, it boiled down to an exemption in Tulsa's sign ordinance that says if it's a work of art or if it's a symbol of a religious organization, the sign doesn't need a permit and doesn't have a size limitation.

Three of the four board members agreed the wraps fall under those exemptions. Mike says it's more than a legal victory to him.

School Teachers In Uproar Over New Rap, Hip Hop Program Saying It's Offensive

click to read full story from News9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Some Oklahoma City teachers said their latest teaching tools are inappropriate and offensive.

It's a program called Flocabulary, and a small group of teachers is calling the content into question. However, it's not just the content that is in question, but how funds were approved and spent.

In Oklahoma City, the program is used for at-risk students.The alternative students can be anyone from a hospitalized student to a student in juvenile detention. It serves students in alternative educations from grades 3 to 12.

The idea behind Flocabulary is using hip hop and rap music to help students learn facts. The method is something educators agree on, but there are concerns about how the material is written. The idea of a program that will grab the attention of students is positive.

"Kids learn differently. One thing we definitely want to do as a school district is use different techniques," said Oklahoma City School Board Chairperson Angela Monson.

The Flocabulary system features vocabulary books, math books and social studies. It cost the Oklahoma City School District $95,000 in federal funds.

A concerned teacher spoke out about the books because of his concerns over content. He is worried for his job and wished to remain anonymous.

"The public has been cheated. The students have been cheated. Teachers have been cheated," he said.

One of the chapters in the U.S. history book is called O.D.W.M., which stands for Old Dead White Men. It's a section that aims to teach students about past presidents.

"Our founding fathers deserve a little more respect than that," said the concerned educator.

Each section of the textbooks comes along with an original rap that centers on the chapter's subject. One about pilgrims refers to "Sipping Henny." The phrase is later defined as sipping Hennesey Cognac.

"I just don't think it's appropriate. I don't think any parent would want their child looking at that material," the anonymous teacher added.

The vocabulary books quote real rap songs. Other books reference rap artists like Tupac and his song "Hit Em' Up." The quotes used in the material are clean but come from lyrics full of profanity, sex, and violence. Some of the raps referenced use incorrect grammar.

"I think some of it is very questionable, and when the district hears or someone brings something like this to our attention we respond immediately," said Angela Monson, Oklahoma City School Board Chairperson, who first heard about the Flocabulary concerns on Tuesday.

Monson said an investigation will soon be underway.

"We need to find out to what extent it is being used, how it's being used, and make sure any inappropriate use stops," she said.

While the school board commented on the issue, district officials did not have any comment.

Flocabulary is based in New York. The founders said it's being used and is successful in around 10,000 schools across the county, but critics in Oklahoma said they don't want it here.

McDonalds Happy Meals On Trial In San Francisco

McDonalds Happy Meals are put on trial in San Francisco Saying that they entice children to eat bad food through offering them prizes and toys with their meals. So does this mean San Francisco Will also be taking Cereal Companies to Court for putting prizes in cereal boxes too? This whole thing is nothing but a socialist movement to gain more and more control over the American People and what we can and can't eat and buy to eat.

Parents Express Their Anger and Concerns About School Wanting To Teach Sex Ed To Children As Young As 5 yrs old

Parents of Helena School Students Express Their Concerns About new Sex-Ed Classes the school wants to teach to children as young as 5 years old.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Georgia Teen Banned From Libraries For Proselytizing

COLUMBUS, Ga. — A 16-year-old boy has been banned from all branches of the Chattahoochee Valley Regional Library system for six months for proselytizing.

According to a letter from Kirsten Edwards, acting manager of the North Columbus Public Library, Caleb Hanson repeatedly asked patrons "about their religious faith and to offer biblical advice."

Caleb received the letter through his parents, Tim and Elizabeth Hanson, who are in Columbus on furlough from mission work.

He said he was given several warnings, since June, from the library on Britt David Road.

"At first (library employees) warned me not to do it," he said. "Then they took me into an office and told me not to do it."

He said he then began talking to people outside the library, and patrons continued to complain.

Claudya Muller, the director of the Chattahoochee Valley Regional Library system, said the ban "had nothing to do with what he was saying, but he was warned multiple times. ... As people came in, he would approach them. He prevented people from simply using the library."

In addition to the North Columbus branch, the system includes the Columbus, South Columbus, Mildred L. Terry, Cusseta-Chattahoochee, Lumpkin, Marion County and Parks Memorial public libraries. The ban was effective Aug. 28.

Jury Acquits 4 Missionaries Of Inciting Crowd At Muslim Festival

click to read full story from

A jury acquitted on Friday four Christian missionaries who were accused of inciting a crowd while videotaping themselves proselytizing to Muslims at the Dearborn Arab International Festival in June.

Nabeel Qureshi of Virginia, Negeen Mayel of California and Paul Rezkalla and David Wood, both of New York, were acquitted of breach of peace, 19th District Court officials in Dearborn said after the verdict. Mayel was found guilty of failure to obey a police officer's order.

The four are members of a Christian group called Acts 17 Apologetics, who, according to the group's Web site, "refute the arguments of those who oppose the true gospel, most commonly the arguments of Muslims and atheists." They maintain that Islam is a false religion and inherently violent.

They were charged in July with disorderly conduct after police said they received a complaint from a Christian volunteer working at the festival who said he was harassed by the group.

Dearborn Mayor Jack O'Reilly Jr. said Friday night that he respects the decision, but the missionaries were anti-Muslim bigots pulling a publicity stunt to gain attention on YouTube in order to raise money.

ACLU Court Order Criminalizes Christianity

click to read full story from World Net Daily

By Bob Unruh
© 2010 WorldNetDaily

The Florida dispute over a "Consent Decree" adopted by school officials that critics charge violates the First Amendment and abridges the rights of teachers and students alike has been escalated to the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, where a petition is asking the judges to strike it down.

The newest filing in the long-running dispute over complaints of prayers at some off-campus events in the Santa Rosa County School District was filed by Liberty Counsel.

The document is on behalf of efforts by the Christian Educators Association International to intervene in the case. The organization has interests in the outcome and had tried to enter at the trial court level, but was rejected by the judge.

The case originated when two high school seniors in 2008 brought the complaint under the pseudonym of "Doe." The solution adopted by the school board was a "Consent Decree" crafted by the American Civil Liberties Union which since then has been used to threaten employees with fines and jail time for something as personal as praying over a meal.

For example, Liberty Counsel was successful in 2009 defending Michelle Winkler on contempt charges brought by the ACLU after her husband, who is not employed by the district, offered a meal prayer at a private event in a neighboring county.

Also, on Constitution Day, Liberty Counsel successfully defended Pace High School Principal Frank Lay and Athletic Director Robert Freeman on criminal contempt charges. The ACLU complained that Freeman offered a blessing for a lunch for some 20 adult booster club members.

According to Liberty Counsel, under the decree and the official district guidelines, "teachers are always considered to be acting in their 'official capacity' whenever a student is present, even at private functions off campus. Teachers cannot pray, bow their heads, or fold their hands to show agreement with anyone who does pray. Teachers and staff cannot 'Reply' to an e-mail sent by a parent if the parent's e-mail refers to God or Scripture. Teachers either have to delete such references from the original e-mail or reply by initiating a new e-mail. Teachers and staff are also required to stop students from praying in their own private club meetings. During witness testimony, Winkler cried as she described how she and a coworker, who had recently lost a child, had to hide in a closet to pray."

As a result, Liberty Counsel also initiated a separate lawsuit against the district on behalf of faculty, staff and students whose rights "are infringed" by the decree.

Mathew Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel, said, "Public schools are not religion-free zones, yet this ACLU-crafted court order criminalizes Christianity and censors religious expression, even outside of school time. We will not rest until this unconstitutional order is overturned."

The appeal brief argues that the district court was mistaken, because the "Consent Decree" involved resolution of a case involving those two students alone, and it was not a class action case. Therefore, when they graduated and separated from the school, the case should have ended.

"The Consent Decree must be vacated as moot and the action dismissed for want of jurisdiction," the brief contends. "It is well-settled that graduation moots the interest of former students in declaratory or injunctive relief against their former schools.

"It is now undisputed that both plaintiffs graduated on May 30, 2009, and have 'no continuing contacts [with] Pace High School and/or the school district,'" it says.

WND reported weeks ago when Florida lawmakers got involved in the case. They adopted a new law that reads, "District school boards, administrative personnel, and instructional personnel are prohibited from taking affirmative action, including, but not limited to, the entry into any agreement, that infringes or waives the rights or freedoms afforded to instructional personnel, school staff, or students by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, in the absence of the express written consent of any individual whose constitutional rights would be impacted by such infringement or waiver."

Staver called the Consent Decree "the most unconstitutional order I have ever read."

"It was written as though the First Amendment does not exist. It is only a matter of time before this Consent Decree is overturned," he said.

The claims against Santa Rosa County School District began in August 2008 when two anonymous students sued with the help of the ACLU over longstanding practices at the school allowing prayer at some off-campus events. The school's separate counsel had agreed to a Consent Decree that "essentially bans all Santa Rosa County School District employees from engaging in prayer or religious activities," Liberty Counsel reported.

Liberty Counsel lawyers said they volunteered to work for free for the school to protect the First Amendment rights at issue.

"But the school district decided instead to shake hands with the ACLU, pay the ACLU $200,000 in legal fees and voluntarily enter into the consent decree that obliterates religious freedom and makes a mockery of the First Amendment," Liberty Counsel said in its description of the conflict.

White Decendents Of 1st U.S African American Doctor Gather To Put Tombstone On His Unmarked Grave

White descendants of the nation's first professionally trained African-American doctor gathered in a cemetery on Sunday to dedicate a tombstone at the unmarked grave where he was buried in 1865.

"Right now I feel so connected in a new way, to actually be here," said Antoinette Martignoni, the 91-year-old great-granddaughter of James McCune Smith. "I take a deep breath, and I thank God, I really do. I am so glad to have lived this long."

Smith, born in New York City in 1813, wanted to be a doctor but was denied entry to medical schools in the United States. He earned a degree from the University of Glasgow in Scotland, then returned to New York to practice. Besides being a doctor, he was celebrated in his lifetime as a writer and an anti-slavery leader.

Although scholars have written books about Smith, who set up a medical practice in lower Manhattan and became the resident physician at an orphanage, his descendants knew nothing about him until recently.

The story of why Smith was nearly overlooked by history and buried in an unmarked grave is in part due to the centuries-old practice of light-skinned blacks passing as white to escape racial prejudice. Smith's mother had been a slave; his father was white. Three of his children lived to adulthood, and they all apparently passed as white, scholars say.

Greta Blau, Smith's great-great-great-granddaughter, made the connection after she took a course at Hunter College on the history of blacks in New York. She did some research and realized that James McCune Smith the trailblazing black doctor was the same James McCune Smith whose name was inscribed in a family Bible belonging to Martignoni, her grandmother.

Her first response was, "But he was black. I'm white."

Blau, of New Haven, Conn., concluded that after Smith's death, his surviving children must have passed as white, and their children and grandchildren never knew they had a black forbear, let alone such an illustrious one.

Blau contacted all the Smith descendants she could find and invited them to join her Sunday for a ceremony dedicating a handsome tombstone at Smith's grave at Brooklyn's Cypress Hills Cemetery.

Eleven of Smith's descendants went to lay flowers at the cemetery, the final resting place of other notables including baseball player Jackie Robinson and actress Mae West.

Blau's aunt Elizabeth Strazar said she had grown up believing her ethnic heritage was English, Irish, Scottish and French.

"Now I can say I'm English, Irish, African-American and French, which I feel very proud of," she said.

Joanne Edey-Rhodes, the professor whose course led Blau to discover her ancestor, said Blau had written about Smith in her paper for the course.

"She was writing about this person and didn't realize that that was her very own ancestor," Edey-Rhodes said.

Edey-Rhodes, who's black, said that to be black in America in Smith's time "was a horrible condition."

"Black people were a despised group, and to many we still are a despised group in the world," she said. "I think that it is so important that at this time in history, that a family that is classified as white can say, 'I have this African-American ancestor,' and be able to do it without any shame, without having to hide it."

The tombstone dedication was followed by a panel discussion at St. Philip's Episcopal Church in Harlem. Smith was an active member of the church, which was at another location in his lifetime.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Parents Worried About Game "Are You Nervous" That Their Children Are Playing

Link To Original Story

MIDWAY(September 22, 2010)--A Central Texas school district is investigating after the father of a middle school student complained that his daughter was the victim of a popular, but inappropriate game.

The game is called, "Are You Nervous?" and it involves at least two people.
One person lays their hand on a benign place on the other’s body, like the knee, while slowly moving it towards the person's private parts.

While doing that, the person touching the other’s body repeatedly asks, "Are You Nervous?"

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Government Stating That Recession Is Over In U.S While Unemployment Rates Still Sore Higher In 27 States

click to read full story

NEW YORK ( -- The national unemployment rate may have only ticked up slightly in August, but on a state-by-state basis, the jobs picture continues to look a lot more grim in places like Nevada, Michigan and California.

A total of 27 states reported higher unemployment rates in August, nearly double the 14 that saw increases in July, the Labor Department said in its monthly report on state unemployment Tuesday.

While the rate remained at 9.6% for the country as a whole, Nevada, Michigan and California have consistently racked up rates above 12%.

Nevada had the worst rate for the fourth month in a row, at a record high of 14.4%, up from 14.3% in July. Michigan followed with 13.1% unemployment, unchanged from the prior rate, and California was third with a 12.4% rate, an increase from 12.3% in July.

Mother Passes Out Condoms At School Dance

LONGMONT, Colo. - The mother of a male student at Skyline High School in Longmont is under fire for allegedly passing out condoms to students during the school's homecoming dance.

It happened on the evening of September 11th.

Both parents and students tell FOX31 News the mother was attending the dance and began distributing the condoms while telling students, "Condoms are cheaper than babies."

One parent, who just found out about the incident on Monday was angry and contacted FOX31 News by email.

We contacted the St. Vrain School District which said administrators were angry and disturbed as well.

A district spokesperson told us the news came as a complete surprise to them and they had no idea it happened until Monday.

"This is a gross violation of school policy and something we will not tolerate,” says John Poynton, spokesperson for the St. Vrain School District. "If we do find that this parent was handing out condoms to students on school property, we will take the appropriate action and she will not be allowed on campus again."

Atlanta Georgia Has Health Day For Homeless

Click to read full story

In downtown Atlanta today, an entire block on Ellis Street was sectioned off for Lazarus Ministries’ fourth annual Health Day with the homeless men and women of the city. The street was packed with volunteers and local homeless people talking, eating, and playing games together. Scores of clothes, sack lunches, and health-related services were offered to people, as well as entertainment and opportunities for conversation. A collaborative effort between Lazarus Ministries and SafeHouse Outreach, Health Day is a chance for the homeless to be overwhelmed by abundance, not need.

The event featured complimentary blood pressure checks, dental examinations, haircuts, manicures, coffee, and entertainment for all who participated. Homeless men, women, and children - many living in and out of local shelters - filled the street where tables were set up for health and hygiene screenings, clothes donations, and job readiness counseling. Volunteers at these stations included doctors and other health professionals, beauticians, and counselors. Groups from local churches and shelters also helped with the event, facilitating entertainment through karaoke, face painting, board games, and a dunk-tank.

Scientists Say The Story Of Moses Parting The Red Sea Is True

click to read full story

The parting of the waters described in the book of Exodus that enabled Moses and the Israelites to escape the pharaoh's army is possible, computer simulations run by researchers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and the University of Colorado at Boulder show.

To test the theory that the biblical account may have depicted actual events, the researchers studied maps of the region, archaeological records and satellite measurements to find a topographical feature where such an event might have been possible. They settled on an area south of the Mediterranean Sea where some oceanographers say a branch of the Nile River drained into what was called the Lake of Tanis, a coastal lagoon 3,000 years ago.

The computer model shows a 63 mph east wind blowing across the area and its 6-feet-deep waters for 12 hours. In the scenario, the wind pushed back the waters into both the lake and the channel of the river, exposing a mud flat 2 to 2.5 miles long and 3 miles wide for four hours. As the winds died down, the waters quickly flowed back in and in theory would have drowned anyone on the mud flat.

“The simulations match fairly closely with the account in Exodus,” said Carl Drews of NCAR, the lead author of the study published in the online journal PLoS ONE. (Read the full study)

“The parting of the waters can be understood through fluid dynamics. The wind moves the water in a way that’s in accordance with physical laws, creating a safe passage with water on two sides and then abruptly allowing the water to rush back in.”

YouTube: Parting the waters, Part 1: The physics of a land bridge

Parting the waters, Part 2: Carl Drews on wind setdown research

Greatest Baseball Play, Rick Monday Saves U.S. Flag From Being Burned

On April 25, 1976 at Dodger Stadium, Rick Monday of the Chicago Cubs, grabbed and secured the American flag from two Men attempting to burn our flag in the middle of the playing field. It was an outstanding display of American Patriotism. Our Question Is Why Aren't More American's like this today. We see people in America allowed to trample, and burn our flag and we are just standing by and not stopping it. There are some debates whether it is against the law or not to desecrate our Nations Flag. But what this man did was the greatest baseball play in history we need more Americans like him today to stand up and just run and take the flag back.

UK: Govt. Trying To Pass Law That All Pay Checks Go To Them First

The UK's tax collection agency is putting forth a proposal that all employers send employee paychecks to the government, after which the government would deduct what it deems as the appropriate tax and pay the employees by bank transfer.

The proposal by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) stresses the need for employers to provide real-time information to the government so that it can monitor all payments and make a better assessment of whether the correct tax is being paid.

Currently employers withhold tax and pay the government, providing information at the end of the year, a system know as Pay as You Earn (PAYE). There is no option for those employees to refuse withholding and individually file a tax return at the end of the year.

If the real-time information plan works, it further proposes that employers hand over employee salaries to the government first.

"The next step could be to use (real-time) information as the basis for centralizing the calculation and deduction of tax," HMRC said in a July discussion paper.

HMRC described the plan as "radical" as it would be a huge change from the current system that has been largely unchanged for 66 years.

Even though the centralized deductions proposal would provide much-needed oversight, there are some major concerns, George Bull, head of Tax at Baker Tilly, told

"If HMRC has direct access to employees' bank accounts and makes a mistake, people are going to feel very exposed and vulnerable," Bull said.

And the chance of widespread mistakes could be high, according to Bull. HMRC does not have a good track record of handling large computer systems and has suffered high-profile errors with data, he said.

The system would be massive in terms of data management, larger than a recent attempt to centralize the National Health Service's data, which was later scrapped, Bull said.

If there's a mistake and the HMRC collects too much money, the difficulty of getting it back could be high with repayments of tax taking weeks or months, he said.

"There has to be some very clear understanding of how quickly repayments were made if there was a mistake," Bull said.

HMRC estimated the potential savings to employers from the introduction of the concept would be about £500 million ($780 million).

But the cost of implementing the new system would be "phenomenal," Bull pointed out.

Friday, September 17, 2010

U.S School Students Taken To Islamic Mosque On Field Trip And Pray To Allah

A Massachusetts school district has apologized to parents after a group of schoolchildren participated in midday Muslim prayers during a field trip to a Boston-area mosque.

The incident occurred in May when a social studies class from Wellesley Middle School toured the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, one of the largest mosques in the Northeast.

Parents were told their children would be learning about the architecture of a mosque and they would be allowed to observe a prayer service. But the students wound up being given a lecture on the Prophet Muhammad, and some boys participated in a midday prayer service.

The field trip was videotaped by a parent whose child was on the trip. At one point, the video shows a spokeswoman for the mosque telling students, “You have to believe in Allah, and Allah is the one God, the only one worthy of worship, all forgiving, all merciful."

Attorney Rob Meltzer represents the parent, who asked not to be identified. He’s launched an investigation into the incident and says he may consider filing a lawsuit or complaint against the school district.

“Personally, I was appalled,” Meltzer told FOX News Radio. “We are obviously very concerned about how much control parents were given and the lack of informed consent.”

The sixth graders were also reportedly told that jihad is a personal spiritual struggle that has nothing to do with holy war, and girls on the field trip were told that Islam is pro-women.

click to read full story from Fox News

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Ohio Township Judge Makes A Way For Tea Party Constitution Day Rally

Thursday, September 16, 2010
Ohio Tea Party

Ohio Tea Party rally at the Cuyahoga County Fairground, Berea, Ohio, Sunday, April 11, 2010. (AP photo)

( – A district court judge in Northern Ohio ruled late Wednesday that Tea Party activists will be able to celebrate Constitution Day on Sept. 17 with a rally in tiny Andover Township, Ohio, despite the fact that the township initially tried to block the event because it was too political.

As previously reported, the trustees of Andover Township denied the Andover Tea Party chapter use of the public square at the center of town based on the group’s “political affiliation.”

The group wanted to use the square for a rally with patriotic singers to commemorate Sept. 17, 1787, the day the U.S. Constitution was implemented.

But on Aug. 25, the trustees sent a letter saying: “Due to your group’s political affiliation, in our opinion as a case by case option we are denying your request to use Andover Township Park.”

The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law, a libertarian legal group in Ohio, filed a request in federal court for a temporary restraining order on Sept. 10. The center’s executive director, Maurice Thompson, pointed out the irony in the Tea Party’s First Amendment rights being infringed upon as they sought to celebrate the same document in which it is contained.

“The first thing you note is the extreme irony of the unconstitutional prohibition of the commemoration of the Constitution,” Thompson told

“(A)nd the second thing that’s notable is either the extreme arrogance or ignorance of many local government officals," said Thompson. "There’s so much focus on federal government, yet some of the worst actors are at the ground level.”

Thompson described the case as “pretty straightforward,” and said he expected a ruling in his clients’ favor before the event, citing a call with the judge in which the judge told the township they were “not in a very strong position here.”

Indeed, Judge Donald F. Nugent granted a “preliminary injunction that shall remain in effect until further notice,” allowing the Andover Tea Party group to go ahead with their planned rally.

At a later date, Nugent said he will determine the case on the merits, deciding whether the authority cited by the trustees violates the First Amendment rights of the Tea Partiers to peacefully assemble.

In their letter, the trustees cited a 2006 resolution, Andover Resolution 06-104, which “prohibit(s) any for-profit advertising or political signs on the Andover Square” and that permission to use the square would be made by the trustees “on case by case bases.”

“You know, the First Amendment is something that everybody knows enough about to make this an easy issue,” Thompson said. “These people again are either ill-intentioned or thoughtless -- we really don’t know which. Either is bad government.”

Members of the Andover Township board of trustees did not respond to’s requests for an interview.

IHOP Restaurant Takes On IHOP Prayer Group

Click to read full story

(CNN) -- IHOP has filed a lawsuit against a church group called the International House of Prayer claiming that the group is illegally using the pancake house's famous acronym.

The legal flap started earlier this month when the International House of Pancakes filed the lawsuit in a federal court in California.

The Kansas City, Missouri-based church group "selected and adopted the International House of Prayer name, knowing it would be abbreviated IHOP. IHOP-KC intended to misappropriate the fame and notoriety of the household name IHOP to help promote and make recognizable their religious organization," the lawsuit says.

Lawyers from the pancake restaurant say the odds are stacked against the church group and provided the court with pages and pages of documentation of websites, newsletters and signs on buildings where the prayer group allegedly used the IHOP acronym.

The use of the acronym infringes on the restaurant's trademark, the restaurant contends.

So, IHOP, the pancake house, is asking a judge to get IHOP, the church group, to stop using the letters IHOP.

The restaurant says it has used the acronym for more than 30 years


JMC Ministries Response

Written By: Miranda Caverley

To be quite Honest we are not surprised that IHop (pancakes) Is sueing IHop (prayer) We follow the International House of Prayer and I commented once saying, "I just don't see how they can use IHOP when the Pancake Restaurant is using it as well. I bet there will be a lawsuit in the near future." We ourselves have seen other ministries have to either shut down a website or even a facebook group because they used the name of someone elses already existing business or organization.

We hope that IHOP and IHOP can get this worked out as easily as possible and they both can continue in their work, one feeding the body and one feeding the soul.

Team Of Americans Head To Chile' To Help Rescue 33 Men In Collapsed Mine

Link To Full Story

At the San Jose Mine, Chile (CNN) -- Brandon Fisher has the deep orange hue of someone who has a sunburn on top of a sunburn. The creases under his eyes are evidence of how little sleep he has had lately.

Fisher and a small crew of American drillers are the tip of the spear for Plan B, one of the three drilling teams racing to rescue 33 trapped miners buried 2,300 feet below the ground.

It's a high pressure assignment expected to continue for months in Chile's remote and unforgiving Atacama Desert.

Fisher's crew has been working around the clock for more than a week. Despite the grueling schedule, he said he's up for the challenge.

"We have got humans in the ground. It doesn't matter if they are Americans or Chileans," Fisher said Monday in his first interview since arriving in Chile eight days earlier.

"We have the ability to help them out, and that's the whole reason we are here. Miners are miners; it doesn't matter what country they are from."

Fisher is based in Berlin, Pennsylvania, in the heart of the state's mining country thousands of miles from Chile. His company, Center Rock Inc., aided in the rescue of nine miners who were trapped for more than four days after the 2002 collapse of the Quecreek Mine. He has drilled oil, gas and water holes and the foundations for the Trump Tower in Chicago, Illinois.But those assignments pale in comparison to the difficulties of rescuing 33 men who became trapped August 5 when the copper and gold mine they were working in collapsed around them.Fisher became involved in the rescue effort when the company that distributes his custom-made drills in Chile put the Chilean government in touch with him."They understood our plan," Fisher said of the Chilean government. "Hopefully we will get a hole in the ground successfully."Creating that "hole" -- as the drillers call it -- is as risky as a tightrope walk over a minefield as the drill attempts to widen a 5-inch opening previously drilled when rescuers were searching for the missing miners.Eventually Fisher's drill bits could widen the hole to a diameter where the miners would be rescued one at a time in a specially designed cage.

43.6 Million Americans Living In Poverty The Highest Since 1960''s

The number of people living in poverty has climbed to 14.3 percent of Americans, with the ranks of working-age poor reaching the highest level since at least 1965.

The Census Bureau says that about 43.6 million people, or 1 in 7, were in poverty last year. That's up from 39.8 million, or 13.2 percent, in 2008.

The number of people lacking health insurance rose from 46.3 million to 50.7 million, due mostly to the loss of employer-provided health insurance during the recession. Congress passed a health overhaul earlier this year to extend coverage to more people.

The statistics released Thursday cover President Barack Obama's first year in office, whenunemployment climbed to 10 percent in the months after the financial meltdown.

The median — or midpoint — household income was $49,777.

U.S Home Foreclosures Highest Since The Mortgage Crisis Began

Click to read full story from Fox News

LOS ANGELES -- Lenders took back more homes in August than in any month since the start of the U.S. mortgage crisis.

The increase in home repossessions came even as the number of properties entering the foreclosure process slowed for the seventh month in a row, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday.

In all, banks repossessed 95,364 properties last month, up 3 percent from July and an increase of 25 percent from August 2009, RealtyTrac said.

August makes the ninth month in a row that the pace of homes lost to foreclosure has increased on an annual basis. The previous high was in May.

Banks have been stepping up repossessions to clear out their backlog of bad loans with an eye on eventually placing the foreclosed properties on the market, but they can't afford to simply dump the properties on the market.

Concerns are growing that the housing market recovery could stumble amid stubbornly high unemployment, a sluggish economy and faltering consumer confidence. U.S. home sales have collapsed since federal homebuyer tax credits expired in April.

That's one reason fewer than one-third of homes repossessed by lenders are on the market, said Rick Sharga, a senior vice president at RealtyTrac.

"These (properties) are going to come to market, but very slowly because nobody wants to overwhelm a soft buyer's market with too much distressed inventory for fear of what it would do for house prices," he said.

As a result, lenders are putting off initiating the foreclosure process on homeowners who have missed payments, letting borrowers stay in their homes longer.

The number of properties receiving an initial default notice -- the first step in the foreclosure process -- slipped 1 percent last month from July, but was down 30 percent versus August last year, RealtyTrac said.

Initial defaults have fallen on an annual basis the past seven months. They peaked in April 2009.