Conservatism is the antithesis of the kind of ideological fanaticism that has brought so much horror and destruction to the world. The common sense and common decency of ordinary men and women, working out their own lives in their own way—this is the heart of American conservatism today. Conservative wisdom and principles are derived from willingness to learn, not just from what is going on now, but from what has happened before. — Ronald Reagan, 1977 CPAC speech


The Left: Distorting History, Distorting Conservatives, Distorting the Truth

March 16, 2014   ·   By   ·   7 Comments

South Dakota Senator Phil Jensen

South Dakota Senator Phil Jensen

The Rapid City Journal has a hit piece out on one of our best, most conservative legislators in South Dakota, and of course, the RINO caucus of the “Republican” Party is overjoyed.  They’ve wanted to get rid of the object of the hit piece, Senator Phil Jensen, for some time now (and they failed in their last attempt a couple of years ago).

Leftist “news” organizations like the Journal go out of their way to ask the most controversial questions possible in order to provide themselves with the best opportunity possible to twist and distort what conservatives believe…and this news story hit piece is no exception. They know that, after having been coached by the “mainstream” media for decades to loathe “out of touch” conservatives, the average low-information voter member of the public who doesn’t bother to learn the truth will be taken in by their propaganda. And since the liberal usurpers within the Republican Party are now in an open, all-out war against those who still believe in the documented values of the GOP, this serves their purposes as well.

It doesn’t take long in the Journal article to get down to the stuff that makes enemies of conservatives like Dennis Daugaard want to get rid of Jensen. You see, Jensen exposes, with both words and deeds, the rank hypocrisy of liberals within the GOP who claim they are Republicans (some even dare to call themselves conservatives) while working against the documented values and goals of the Republican Party-goals that are clearly and decidedly conservative in nature. He doesn’t go out of his way to expose their hypocrisy; merely by standing for what is right and against what is wrong, he cannot help but expose their betrayals.

From the article:

While he doesn’t like to point fingers — “you’re going to get me in trouble” — Jensen believes too many members of his party are Republicans in name only…

…He still struggles to understand why more Republicans aren’t fighting with him.

“It’s unbelievable,” he said. “Some are Republicans because that’s the only way they can get elected in their district.”

You see, Jensen doesn’t just mouth platitudes about being conservative and being a Republican. He actually behaves like a Republican. He opposes federal encroachment in areas like education and energy production. He opposes liberal efforts to quash freedom. He believes in the U.S. Constitution and state’s rights, and isn’t afraid to back up that belief with legislation.

One of those ways was a bill to protect religious freedom that he sponsored in the 2014 session, and it was the examination of this bill that also brings us to our first example of Leftist media bias in this article:

Jensen’s strong views occasionally draw heat from his colleagues. This session, Jensen sponsored Senate Bill 128, which would have allowed businesses to deny service to people based on their sexual orientation and not fear a lawsuit.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocates, and even some Republicans, decried the legislation as discriminatory. Sen. Mark Kirkeby, R-Rapid City, called it “a mean, nasty, hateful, vindictive bill.” It was killed in committee.

Notice how the “mainstream” media portrays this not as a bill to protect religious freedom-which is precisely what it was-but rather a bill to “allow businesses to deny service to people based on their sexual orientation.”

Notice also that it is Jensen who has “strong views,” not the liberals who want to force business owners to violate their conscience and their religious convictions, not those who insist on discussing their sodomy in public, not those who refer to efforts to protect religious freedom as “mean, nasty, hateful, vindictive.” No, they don’t have “strong views;” only conservatives have “strong views.”

This bill-and others like it, this session-was brought in response to the very real and ongoing threat to religious liberty being perpetrated by homosexual activists in places like ColoradoWashingtonOregon, and New Mexico. And now that the legislative session is practically over with no legislation to protect Christian business owners, an assault on South Dakota’s marriage protection act is being waged by homosexual activists in Rapid City.

And the part that really has the RINOs squawking in mock indignation today is this excerpt from the article:

Jensen goes so far as to say that businesses should have the right to deny service based on a customer’s race or religion – whether that’s right or wrong, he says, can be fairly addressed by the free market, not the government.

“If someone was a member of the Ku Klux Klan, and they were running a little bakery for instance, the majority of us would find it detestable that they refuse to serve blacks, and guess what? In a matter of weeks or so that business would shut down because no one is going to patronize them,” he said.

Why, the Journal even featured a quote from a pro-homosexual group to back up how “deeply flawed” Jensen’s commitment to freedom is, so it must be wrong, then.

But is it “deeply flawed”…or is the common liberal-distorted understanding of history and the nature of freedom what is deeply flawed? It is the latter.

The way South Dakota’s premier RINO website, the South Dakota War on Conservatives, frames it, Jensen “advocates bringing back Jim Crow laws.”

So what were “Jim Crow laws”?  They were racist laws created by Democrats (not evil Republicans, as the “mainstream” media and other liberals would have you think) to institutionalize racism and discrimination in government, and to force private businesses to discriminate against black Americans-whether that business wanted to discriminate or not. These Democrat-passed laws ensured that government services would be denied or restricted to black Americans based on their skin color, and forced businesses to either not serve black Americans, or treat them as second class citizens if they were going to provide goods and services to them.

How many private business owners would have denied service to black Americans if they had not been required to deny service by the Democrats’ Jim Crow laws?  Some, to be sure. There have been plenty of racists in the past, and sadly there are still some around today.

But it seems clear that since there have been many white people since colonial times (like John Adams) who have recognized the equal dignity and worth of people of all skin colors, and since many white people began the abolitionist movement shortly after the American Revolution, and many white people died in the Civil War to set all black Americans free (remember the fifth verse of the Battle Hymn of the Republic: “As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,While God is marching on“), and since many white people worked alongside black Americans after the Civil War to see full equality for ALL Americans, that obviously far from all white Americans would have denied black Americans goods and services from their privately owned businesses.

But what if some did?

Walter E. Williams

Walter E. Williams

Many people would probably be surprised to learn that economist Walter E. Williams, a black man, also believes a private business should be free to serve or not serve whomever they want.

From Williams’ 2010 column, recognizing that a private business is the property of the owner, that the business owner has property rights, that it is the business owner who owns the business, not the public and not the government:

Should people have the right to discriminate by race, sex, religion and other attributes? In a free society, I say yes. Let’s look at it. When I was selecting a marriage partner, I systematically discriminated against white women, Asian women and women of other ethnicities that I found less preferable. The Nation of Islam discriminates against white members. The Aryan Brotherhood discriminates against having black members. The Ku Klux Klan discriminates against having Catholic and Jewish members. The NFL discriminates against hiring female quarterbacks. The NAACP National Board of Directors, at least according to the photo on their Web page, has no white members.

You say, Williams, that’s different. It’s not like public transportation, restaurants and hotel service in which Title II of the 1964 Civil Rights Act “prohibits discrimination because of race, color, religion, or national origin in certain places of public accommodation, such as hotels, restaurants, and places of entertainment.” While there are many places that serve the public, it doesn’t change the fact that they are privately owned, and who is admitted, under what conditions, should be up to the owner.


One does not have to be a racist to recognize that the federal government has no constitutional authority to prohibit racial or any other kind of discrimination by private parties. Moreover, the true test of one’s commitment to freedom of association doesn’t come when he permits people to associate in ways he deems appropriate. It comes when he permits people to voluntarily associate in ways he deems offensive.

So is black economist Walter E. Williams a racist who hates black people? Sure, he is-just like Phil Jensen. Obviously Williams and Jensen just want to discriminate against black Americans. Uh huh. Now go pull my other leg.

Like every rational person, Williams recognizes that discrimination based on innate, physical characteristics is stupid and reprehensible (while discrimination based on behavior-especially immoral behavior-is another matter entirely). But he also realizes that people are free to be stupid if they want, and business owners are free to accept what commerce they want…and to pass up what business they want-just as the consumer is free to make the same choices.

Freedom and property rights cuts both ways, too. Should a black business restaurant owner be forced to cater a KKK event?  Should a homosexual restaurant owner be forced to cater a National Organization for Marriage event, or a homosexual photographer be forced to photograph a Family Research Council event educating people about the dangers of the homosexual agenda?

It should also be pointed out that, as both Williams and Jensen allude to, most people who disagree with the public discriminatory stance (whether the discrimination is appropriate or inappropriate) of a particular business will not enrich that business with their patronage dollars. Why would a black person want to enrich a racist business owner with his money, just as there is no reason why a homosexual activist should want to enrich with his money a Christian business owner who believes the Bible and believes in protecting real marriage from being counterfeited?

There is only one reason why one person would want to force a business relationship upon another unwilling person: the desire to have supremacy over that person’s point of view. In other words, the only reason why someone would want to force another person to do business with them would be to win a public relations victory over that person, demeaning and devaluing the idea with which they disagree in the process.  To put it simply, the homosexual activist wants to gain the impression of credibility for his homosexual behavior by gaining a legal victory over a Christian.

What’s more, homosexual activists and their “useful idiot” allies in government want to not only discriminate against Christian business owners by mandating business relationships  (something that should be the decision of all parties involved), the Leftists actually intend to up the ante on their discrimination and force the Christian business owner to perform an act the business owner finds morally reprehensible.-a violation of their right of conscience and their God-given religious freedom.

Do people who cherish freedom-let alone cherish what is morally right-really want to reward this kind of petty, narcissistic vindictiveness with the power of government?

If we’re going to be consistent in employing the twisted “logic” of these liberals, then it follows that if a Christian business owner should be forced to make a wedding cake or take photographs for a counterfeit wedding of two homosexuals, then a homosexual baker should be forced to make a cake for a pro-marriage organization which says “Marriage is only between a man and a woman,” and a black baker should be forced to make a cake for a KKK gathering which says something like “Blacks should remember their place-and stay there!”  After all, if we’re going to be consistent in forcing people to associate with one another against their will and provide goods and services which violate their beliefs, then liberals should proudly proclaim that such things are a-okay. But even liberals can figure out that this would be wrong; they just aren’t interested in being consistent…or fair to Christians.

While we’re here, I should also point out that, contrary to the assertions of big-government statist RINOs, there is nothing in the 14th Amendment which gives authority to the federal government to dictate to privately owned businesses who they must and must not provide goods and services to; if there were, then all the Jim Crow laws the Democrats so loved would have been unconstitutional all those years and would have been swept aside with ease and no need of additional legislation. The 14th Amendment was created by Republicans to counter the efforts of Democrats to leverage government to deny black Americans their full voting rights and equal protection under the law…rather like Democrats and other liberals today are trying to leverage the force of government to deny Christians their full religious and property rights under the law.

Go ahead; read the 14th Amendment for yourself, as well as the enumerated powers of the federal government under Article 1 Section 8. Under the limited government model of American government, the federal government has authority over itself, not privately owned businesses. In case it’s too difficult for big government tyrants to figure out, equal protection under the law (a function of government) has nothing to do with regulating the business relationships between a customer and a business. It just breaks the hearts of liberals (regardless of what party they’re in) when they can’t dictate the actions of free people.

It should further be pointed out that in blocking efforts to protect Christian business owners from the government-backed harassment and attacks of homosexual activists, liberals (in both parties) are seeking to create an atmosphere of “reverse Jim Crow laws” where once again we have government telling private businesses who they should serve and what services they should provide. What’s more, this modern-day “reverse Jim Crow law” of the Left goes even further in its trampling of freedom than the ones engineered by their Democrat ancestors by attacking the religious freedom of Christian business owners.

You see, this  modern-day “reverse Jim Crow law” doesn’t just deal with the opinions and beliefs of Christian business owners-it forces them, using the power of government to back it up, to with their very actions betray their consciences, their deeply held religious beliefs.

So it’s pretty obvious who really “advocates bringing back Jim Crow laws;” it’s not Phil Jensen, but the liberals in both parties who like to tell free people what to think and do.

In the examples we’ve already seen in the states mentioned above, homosexual activists are leveraging the force of government to force Christian business owners to provide wedding cakes for counterfeit weddings-when the business owner’s religious convictions based on what the Bible says about homosexual behavior and marriage sees this as immoral behavior-and in another case, seeks to force a Christian photographer to take “wedding” photos of a counterfeit wedding.

This isn’t simply a case of an effeminate-looking fellow walking into a convenience store and the store owner won’t sell him a Pepsi; these are cases where the very actions demanded by the homosexual activists would lend aid to a behavior and activity which the Christian business owner believes is immoral based on what the Bible says about that behavior.

This tyrannical behavior strikes at the very heart of both federal and state protections of religious expression and belief.  Our nation’s founders understood what these modern-day tyrants in both parties seem to have conveniently forgotten:

Government is instituted to protect property of every sort. . . . [and] conscience is the most sacred of all property. – James Madison

No provision in our Constitution ought to be dearer to man than that which protects the rights of conscience. – Thomas Jefferson

Consciences of men are not the objects of human legislation. – New Jersey Governor William Livingston, signer of the U.S. Constitution

Security under our constitution is given to the rights of conscience. – John Jay, First Chief of U.S. Supreme Court, author of the Federalist Papers

It is sufficiently obvious, that persons and property are the two great subjects on which Governments are to act; and that the rights of persons, and the rights of property, are the objects, for the protection of which Government was instituted. These rights cannot well be separated. – James Madison

Conscience is the most sacred of all property. – James Madison

The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If `Thou shalt not covet’ and `Thou shalt not steal’ were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society before it can be civilized or made free. – John Adams

The rights of conscience are, indeed, beyond the just reach of any human power. They are given by God, and cannot be encroached upon by human authority, without a criminal disobedience of the precepts of natural, as well as of revealed religion. — Justice Joseph Story, 1833, Commentaries on the Constitution 3:§§ 1870


Phil Jensen is doing the work the Republican Party claims in its state and national platforms that it stands for: protecting the interest of the taxpayer, promoting the free market, standing up for our nation’s rich religious heritage, defending marriage and family, and being an advocate for freedom. 

This Leftist hit-piece from the “mainstream” media is despicable enough in its own right.  But that despicableness pales in comparison to the betrayal being perpetrated against Jensen by some within his own party who not only killed this and other good bills by Jensen, but are now eagerly joining in the liberal smear campaign against one of our state’s very best legislators. People with a shred of a moral compass would, when their failure was pointed out to them, be ashamed and change their ways. These moral derelicts only become more belligerent in their war on what is good.

When the RINOs tried to get rid of Jensen two years ago, the people of Jensen’s district were wise enough to see through it by a healthy margin. Let’s hope they haven’t dropped their guard since then regarding the slick lies of liberals from both parties.

Walter E Williams - Freedom To Discriminate

Walter E Williams – Discrimination and Freedom

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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year veteran of the United States Air Force, a political writer for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for nearly 20 years, including a Tea Party leader and organizer since 2009. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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