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Election Central

Cruz Names Fiorina His VP

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, joined by former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, waves during a rally in Indianapolis, Wednesday, April 27, 2016, when Cruz announced he has chosen Fiorina to serve as his running mate. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)Ted Cruz announced yesterday that Carly Fiorina will be his running mate if he wins the Republican presidential nomination. Donald Trump made a major foreign policy speech as well, outlining his priorities if he is elected president this November.

I am not writing today to comment on either announcement. Rather, I want to focus on those who are. Both stories were covered by news outlets around the world. In the same way, American reporters are covering global stories this morning.

For instance, this morning's Wall Street Journal reports on the stalled peace talks in Syria, a suicide bombing in Turkey, and a migrant detention center in New Guinea. The front page of today's New York Times tells us about efforts to end a half-century of fighting in Colombia.

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The transgender bathroom controversy

 FILE- In this Aug. 23, 2007 file photo, a sign marks the entrance to a gender neutral restroom at the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vt. For opponents of transgender rights, a favorite line of attack is to oppose policies that would allow people to choose whether to use a men's or women's bathroom based on gender identity.(AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)Time magazine calls the debate over transgender people and bathrooms "the latest civil rights fight". A year ago, this issue was unknown to most of us. Today it is dominating headlines across the country.

What are the issues involved? What does God's word say?

This controversy is complicated—the biological, psychological, social, and legal issues involved are still evolving and hotly contested. The following essay is intended to provide brief responses to the most common questions associated with the transgender debate.

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Clinton Says Unborn Person Doesn’t Have Rights

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a campaign rally, Wednesday, March 30, 2016, at the Apollo Theatre in the Harlem neighborhood of New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)On Sunday, Hillary Clinton told Chuck Todd of Meet the Press that no unborn child has constitutional rights. "The unborn person doesn't have constitutional rights," under our current laws, said Clinton. Oftentimes, those who align with the pro-choice movement will use terminology that suggests the unborn is not a person, but a "fetus." Clinton strayed from this tactic.

By humanizing the fetus, Clinton went on to add that "the woman's right to make decisions" is most important when it comes to abortion. "Now, that doesn't mean that we don't do everything we possibly can in the vast majority of instances to, you know, help a mother who is carrying a child and wants to make sure that child will be healthy, to have appropriate medical support." But in Clinton's framework, the subjectively determined health of the mother trumps the objective life of the child.

Diana Arellano of Planned Parenthood said Sunday that Mrs. Clinton's comments undermined the cause for abortion rights. She said via Twitter that Clinton's comment "further stigmatizes #abortion." Describing the fetus as a "person" or "child" has long been a poor word choice to the pro-choice movement, which argues the terms misleadingly imply a sense of humanity.

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The Art of the Deal vs. the Art of the Meal

Religiösche Figurengruppe: Das letzte Abendmahl (Credit: fotofrank via fotolia)One of Donald Trump's campaign mantras is that he'll "get things done". While many times there is no substantive explanation of exactly how he intends to do so, the way he constantly hearkens to his ability to broker deals points to one way in which he thinks he'll be able to get things done. The image of a boardroom meeting with powerful agents is the dominant metaphor Trump is using, and he's promising to be the man at the helm who will preside over it all.

Donald Trump's boardroom metaphor is representative of the way most people think of leadership. In this conception, power is the central force at play, and coercion is the way you use your power. So, whoever has the most power is the person that is most able to get things done, and, by extension, lead.

I'd like to contrast this conception of leadership to a model of leadership championed by Jesus. The boardroom metaphor of leadership is by no means exclusive to Trump, but instead represents something the general public truly believes about leadership. It can be summed up as the Art of the Deal versus the Art of the Meal.

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Georgia Governor Vetoes Religious Liberty

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal speaks during a press conference to announce he has vetoed legislation allowing clergy to refuse performing gay marriage and protecting people who refuse to attend the ceremonies Monday, March 28, 2016, in Atlanta. The Republican rejected the bill on Monday, saying, On Monday, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal announced he would veto a modified version of a religious liberty bill. Some said this bill would discriminate against the LGBT community. For others, House Bill 757 sought to safeguard church, religious schools, and "integrated auxiliaries," allowing them to work out their religion in the public square for the common good. One side cheered, as this was seen as another step towards equality and liberty for all. But the other side lamented because this was the perceived as the continuation of a forced march of intolerant tolerance.

House Bill 757 would have provided shelter for clergy from having to officiate same-sex weddings. It would have prevented faith-based organizations from being forced to hire someone who publicly undermines their mission. Also, it would have also prohibited the state government from discriminating against churches and their affiliated ministries because they believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. What is so striking it that this modified version of the original bill did not offer protections to bakers, florists, and other wedding service providers that have been in the news as oflate. Yet, even this watered down bill did not pass.

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