Las Vegas Update
The investigation into Sunday's mass murder at a Las Vegas concert continues. Here are some updates.
- Marilou Danley, Stephen Paddock's girlfriend, returned to the United States late last night. She was in the Philippines when the shooting took place.
- While Danley is reportedly cooperating with the FBI, law enforcement authorities have again identified her as "a person of interest." While it may not be relevant, several sources have noted that her previous husband was a far-left activist.
- Sources in the Las Vegas police department have told Fox News that they are concerned about significant inconsistencies in the public statements made by Paddock's brother.
- Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo said yesterday that Paddock's attack "was preplanned extensively." Lombardo said he was "absolutely" confident that investigators would determine Paddock's motivation for the attack.
- Lombardo also raised eyebrows when he said this: "I want to understand the motivation. . . you know, did this person get radicalized unbeknownst to us? And we want to identify that source."
The FBI has seized a computer at Paddock's home. It will be thoroughly examined. Paddock was a regular at casinos and hotels. There are hundreds of hours of video tape that will be analyzed. Bartenders and casino workers will be interviewed to see if they can shed any light on his character and interests.
All this is to say that it is still much too early to draw conclusions. As a reminder, it took seven months for the government to indict Noor Salman, wife of the Orlando Pulse shooter, for her role in that attack. And her trial is just getting started. Conclusions in the Las Vegas case will take time.
"Gotta Serve Somebody"
"Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." --John 15:13
"Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." -- 1 Peter 5:8
He liked to "hang out" and had "no religious affiliation." -- Eric Paddock, describing his brother, Stephen, who murdered 59 people in Las Vegas.
"You may be an ambassador to England or France. You may like to gamble, you may like to dance. You may be the heavyweight champion of the world. You may be a socialite with a long string of pearls.
"But you're gonna have to serve somebody, yes. Indeed you're gonna have to serve somebody. Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord. But you're gonna have to serve somebody." -- Bob Dylan
Twenty-two thousand people in Las Vegas were happily listening to country music three nights ago as one man peered down at them from the 32nd floor of a hotel. Stephen Paddock, who would soon murder 59 people and wound more than 500, had no interest in religion, according to family members.
Among the thousands in the crowd, there were no doubt people of strong faith and of no faith at all. Before the night ended, everyone would "serve somebody."
The killer served Satan, who scripture tells us prowls around like a lion looking to devour someone. Many in the crowd chose to serve God. They gave their lives to save others.
Seldom is the choice between good and evil as stark as it was that horrible night. But every day, whether we are fully aware or not, we are all serving somebody. We will either serve the Lamb or the prowling lion seeking to devour us. In the end, the Lamb of God wins.
House Votes For Life
Late yesterday afternoon, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 36, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The bill, sponsored by my friend Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), prohibits late-term abortions, those performed at 20 weeks or later due to medical evidence indicating that babies at that stage in pregnancy can feel pain.
The bill passed on a vote of 237-to-189. Two Republicans -- Dent (PA) and Frelinghuysen (NJ) -- voted against the bill. Three Democrats -- Cuellar (TX), Lipinski (IL) and Peterson (MN) -- voted for the bill.
Sadly, the United States has some of the most lax abortion laws in the world. We are among a very small number of nations -- seven -- that permit elective abortions after 20 weeks or well into the second trimester of pregnancy.
While the bill faces a much tougher road in the Senate, I can't think of a more appropriate time to be debating this legislation. When we are mourning 59 fellow Americans, the overwhelming majority of the House voted to show mercy to unborn defenseless babies who can feel pain.
Meanwhile, the hypocrisy of the left was on full display. Many progressives have politicized the shooting in Las Vegas. Some have even gone so far as to suggest that conservatives have blood on their hands for supporting the Second Amendment.
Not-so-funny man Jimmy Kimmel said that conservatives should pray that God will forgive them for supporting the NRA.
I would suggest that many of these progressives should be standing up to NARAL -- the National Abortion Rights Action League. Perhaps they should be praying that God will forgive them for the carnage of thousands of innocent babies every day.
Bring Your Bible
In yesterday's report, I wrote about the need for a revival in America, for our society to turn back to God and to seek His blessing. I lamented how daily prayer and Bible readings had been purged from our public schools.
Well, here's some "good news." Tomorrow is Bring Your Bible To School Day. This annual event, sponsored by our friends at Focus On The Family, is voluntary and student led. It is an opportunity for students to exercise their First Amendment rights and to share their faith with friends.
And in today's culture, which is afflicted by so many negative images and influences, I can't think of a better influence on our children than the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule.
After all, as Noah Webster, "the father of American scholarship and education," once wrote: "The Bible is the chief moral cause of all that is good and the best corrector of all that is evil in human society; the best book for regulating the . . . concerns of men."
"Season of our Rejoicing!"
Carol and I wish all of our Jewish friends and supporters a blessed Sukkot as they celebrate God's providence.