Are Obama And Democrats Now Targeting Lawful Businesses?

U.S. Department of Commerce (Flickr)

 

Is the Obama Administration now targeting lawful businesses?

Mike Hawkins, owner of Hawkins Guns, LLC, received a notice from his bank on November 13, telling him his business account was going to be closed because he was a gun dealer. Upon visiting the bank, he was able to record a conversation with the bank official who said: “We don’t do firearms, ammunition, Uhm, (unintelligible), (unintelligible), auctioneers and check cashing companies.”

Hawkins also owns a private investigative business and, as a result, was able to look deeper into the matter and was shocked by what he found. He said:

There are many Americans across the country that have been affected by this. They may not have come forward yet, but the US Consumer Federation is getting numerous calls since my story broke and hopefully more people will come to the table with what has happened to them.

The Department of Justice released the following statement: “We do not target businesses operating within the bounds of the law and we have no interest in pursuing/discouraging lawful conduct.”

The Wall Street Journal published an article saying:

When you become a banker, no one issues you a badge, nor are you fitted for a judicial robe. So why is the Justice Department telling bankers to behave like policemen and judges? Justice’s new probe, known as “Operation Choke Point,” is asking banks to identify customers who may be breaking the law or simply doing something government officials don’t like. Banks must then “choke off” those customers’ access to financial services, shutting down their accounts.

The industries that seem to be targeted include 22 categories of business including, but not limited to: firework sales, tobacco sales, coin dealers, pawn brokers, pharmaceutical sales, and home-based charities and even “As Seen on TV” businesses.

It is true that some businesses within these categories can have questionable ethics and practices, which is true in any business. However, should banks be the judge in determining whether a business is operating within the law? Can the Obama Administration and the Department of Justice force the closing of businesses with which they disagree by shutting off their access to credit and banking services, without giving them their day in court?

Also, says the Wall Street Journal:

Unfortunately, the strategy is legally dubious. Justice is pressuring banks to shut down accounts without pressing charges against a merchant or even establishing that the merchant broke the law. It’s clear enough that there’s fraud to shut down the account, Justice asserts, but apparently not clear enough for the highest law-enforcement agency in the land to prosecute.

Alden Abbott of the Heritage Foundation describes Operation Choke Point:

Banks receive notifications from federal regulators, including the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (the agency responsible for insuring bank deposits), that the government considers certain types of businesses “high risk.” Banks then are pressured, though the implied threat of government investigations, to sever ties with customers engaged in those enterprises.

In the past, banks have always worked hand in hand with law enforcement by reporting suspicious banking behavior to combat identity fraud, counterfeit debt and credit cards, and tax evasion and wire transfer fraud. However, law enforcement agencies are responsible for deciding whether suspicious activity represents actual criminal violations, not the banks. When these suspicions are realized, those accused have their day in court, as mandated by our Constitution. Now, the Justice department is punishing banks that refuse to shut down unpopular but legal industries–by threatening penalties.

Despite your political leanings, or your opinions about the businesses allegedly targeted by the Administration, we should all be concerned that a President or one political party can make decisions that affect the constitutional rights of all Americans without our input or the input of our elected officials. One day, you or your business could be targeted as well, regardless of which political party you support. Is this the United State of America, or Obama’s Nation?

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Woman In Custody After Throwing Molotov Cocktail At People Praying For Life In Front Of Planned Parenthood

Photo Credit: Planetrussell (Creative Commons)

Image for representational purposes only.

A woman is in custody Monday after hurling a molotov cocktail at three women who were praying peacefully in front of the local Planned Parenthood.

03252015_Molotov Tweet_Twitter

The executive director of Central Texas Coalition for Life told KXAN Monday they were able to record part of the suspect’s license plate number before she fled the the scene. Melanie Toney has been charged with aggravated assault.

The group has been praying outside the facility that provides abortions as part of a ‘40 Days for Life’ campaign.

“I don’t know what it was, I thought it was a firecracker, but I saw a person toss out something out of her vehicle,” explained Faviola Hidalgo to KXAN right after her prayer session. She saw Toney flee in a white BMW SUV and dialed 911. “My heart just sank, I got so scared, I said, ‘Oh my God, that is fire!.”

“This is definitely the first time that something of this nature has been thrown at us that’s actually threatened and put people in danger, so it’s obviously very alarming,” said Heather Garner, executive director of Central Texas Coalition for Life.

Garner’s organization took to Facebook after the incident Tuesday, noting, “This is not the first time people have thrown objects at pro-lifers but clearly this instance was a more direct threat, and we always want to exercise caution.

The safety of our volunteers is of utmost importance which is why it is necessary to have at least 2 people praying at all times. Our approach has always been that we have a peaceful prayerful attitude and be aware of our surroundings, which is what these volunteers exemplified. Let us pray for all involved.

This is one of the stories they promoted:

Facebook

Facebook

h/t: The Daily Caller

Share this if you are pro-life and are against throwing Molotov cocktails at peaceful, prayerful people

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

SHOCKING: Ex-Teachers Convicted Of Sex Crimes Against Kids Get Benefits You Won’t Believe

Image Credit: Fox News

Imagine — an ex-teacher collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in pension benefits — far more than what he paid into the retirement system — even after being found guilty of raping 10- and 11-year-old girls he once taught.

That unimaginable circumstance is actually what’s happening in Washington state, where a new study has found many such cases of former teachers who are now felons continuing to collect pension checks totaling into the millions of dollars.

An investigative report by Seattle TV station KING reveals: “In Washington, public employees who commit a crime don’t lose their taxpayer guaranteed retirements, and teachers can earn the right to a lifetime retirement after working for as little as five years.” That includes teachers convicted of sex crimes against students.

Despite numerous examples of convicted child sex offenders still enjoying their taxpayer-funded teacher pensions, Washington state lawmakers trying to cut off such lucrative benefits to known pedophiles are reportedly facing an uphill climb in the legislature.

According to a Fox News report, opposition to implementing what’s known as a pension forfeiture law is being mounted by a teachers’ union with heavy political clout.

You can watch the shocking Fox News coverage of this pedophile controversy by clicking on the video above.

h/t: Fox News

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Obama Admin Releases 166,000 Criminal Illegal Aliens

Creative Commons/Public Domain - Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Judicial Watch obtained documents proving that, to date, the Obama administration has released 165,950 illegal aliens with criminal convictions back into the population. The watchdog organization released 76 pages of Homeland Security documents on Friday, retrieved through FOIA request, showing that many of the criminals were found guilty of violent crimes, including homicide, sexual assault, kidnapping, and aggravated assault.

According to a report published by the Center for Immigration Services in May 2014, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) freed 36,007 convicted criminal aliens who had nearly 88,000 convictions, including 193 homicide convictions, 426 sexual assault convictions, and 303 kidnapping convictions in the year 2013 alone.

Immediately following the release of the CIS report, former Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, issued a statement terming the action “the worst prison break in American history.” He added that “President Obama’s lax immigration policies have put the lives of Americans at risk.”

The documents obtained by Judicial Watch include an email from House Homeland Security Subcommittee Counsel Valerie Baldwin to the Executive Associate Director of ICE Thomas Homan last May expressing the subcommittee’s frustration over ICE’s stonewalling of information concerning the criminal alien release policies:

At the ICE hearing and throughout the data call on ICE’s budget request, we’ve requested data on the make-up of the non-detained ATD [Alternatives to Detention] docket, specifically as it relates to violent crimes. I’m wondering why the Washington Times and Washington Post have more information on the ATD population than the Chairman and the other members of the subcommittee. Please respond with an answer today.

Western Journalism reported on a high profile ICE nationwide sweep for criminal illegal aliens (called “Operation Cross Check”) which occurred in the first week of March, 2015. ICE touted that it had rounded up over 2,000 criminal illegal aliens who “will be processed administratively for removal from the United States.” According to an ICE press release, the agency had gone after:

Priority 1 targets [which] include threats to national security, criminal street gang members, convicted felons, and aggravated felons. Priority 2 targets [which] have convictions for three or more misdemeanors or convictions for significant misdemeanors, including DUIs.

The documents obtained by Judicial Watch call into question the seriousness of ICE’s efforts in executing its own stated priorities. Judicial Watch’s president, Tom Fitton, said:

It’s appalling that we’ve had to sue in federal court to get key information about the Obama administration’s release of 165,950 convicted criminal aliens. These documents show the Obama administration is lying when it says that its ‘enforcement priorities’ include deporting illegal aliens who have committed heinous crimes…Where do the innocent victims of the illegal alien criminals this president’s appointees have set free go for justice?

h/t: Breitbart

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Shock Report: Prison Had No Bibles For Distraught Inmate, Gave Him Porno Mag Instead

Photo credit: shutterstock.com

According to a disturbing report on sex behind bars in the United Kingdom, the prevalence of ostensibly banned activities and paraphernalia is high despite efforts to limit them. The Howard League for Penal Reform released its findings earlier this month, each based on expert interviews with more than two dozen former inmates.

Sex – whether consensual, through rape, or in exchange for some benefit – is a common occurrence in British prisons, the study found. Nevertheless, one former inmate who shared his experience as the victim of a gang rape by five other prisoners said condoms are in short supply.

Prison guards are often little help for rape victims, the report found. One individual expressed dismay that officers largely disregard sexual activity among inmates.

“Most officers just want a quiet life,” the former prisoner explained, adding that, as long as those engaging in sex “caused no trouble and weren’t too in your face with it, they just, you know, ignored it.”

Another study participant confirmed that prison guards are well aware of what goes on during their shifts but will “turn a blind eye” to sex behind bars “as long as you don’t push it.”

Perhaps the most shocking revelation came from one man who recalled his first night as an inmate. Hoping to find solace in God’s word, he said he requested a Bible from prison staff. Informed there were none available, he said he was offered access to several pornographic magazines instead.

U.S. studies have shown similarly common instances of sexual victimization in prison, with one study showing nearly half of all cases reported in 2011 – the most recent year for which data was available – involved a prison staff member.

Share this article on Facebook if you’d rather grant prisoners access to a Bible than pornographic material.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom