All Star Panelist Carol Swain Shut Down on Critical Race Theory at Southern Baptist Convention

All Star Panelist Carol Swain Shut Down on Critical Race Theory at Southern Baptist Convention

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist, Dr. Carol Swain, to the newsmakers line to talk about her experience at the Southern Baptist Convention where she and other minority messengers were prevented from speaking up on Critical Race Theory.

Leahy: We are joined on the newsmaker line right now by our good friend All-Star panelist, Carol Swain. Good morning, Carol.

Swain: Good morning, Michael. How are you? I’ve missed you.

Leahy: Well, you’ve been so busy on the national airwaves every time I turned Fox News, there she is. Carol Swain, articulately making the conservative case. Carol, you were at the Southern Baptist Convention. And I guess there was a bit of skullduggery afoot there. Fill us in, please.

Swain: Yes, it is my first time attending a Southern Baptist Convention. And I arranged my life to give two days to this convention because I wanted to participate. And I was most interested in the Critical Race Theory issue and a resolution that the Conservative Baptist Network crafted and put forward.

And I am on the steering committee of that network. Our resolution was killed by the resolutions committee. And they put forth a substitute that was vaguely worded and did not mention intersexuality or Critical Race Theory itself.

It did have scripture in it, but it was put forth and then they shut down any debate about how the issue was handled. And so Conservative Baptist Network, I never got to speak.

And I was there to try to explain to people how dangerous Critical Race Theory is and how it manifests itself and how it is destroying churches. I never got to speak during the time of the business meeting. And they used parliamentarian rules to control what it’s about, I guess, at meetings.

But two people were allowed to speak for their resolution. One person spoke briefly against it and then someone called for the vote. And this was after someone from the stage had given this impassioned plead that we don’t want to look bad to the world and all of this stuff like that.

And had really attacked and mocked the whole idea that Critical Race Theory was an issue. So it was ugly politics as far as I’m concerned. Not just on that issue but on numerous issues.

Leahy: Carol, are you telling me that the Southern Baptist Convention refused to allow a Black woman to speak about Critical Race Theory?

Swain: The process is they have microphones scattered. I spoke at a breakfast for the Conservative Baptist Network. So I did speak at that breakfast. But when it came to the business meeting, I was not able to speak.

And the process was they had a microphone set up so I was there at my microphone. I would have been the next speaker if someone had not called for the vote. And it was my understanding, and this is what I was told, was that some Black pastors and churches had threatened to leave the convention if the Critical Race Theory issue was addressed.

And the people that did speak for the resolution committee’s substitute amendment, the ones that spoke for it made it seem like Critical Race Theory was not an issue. And that there was this controversy over nothing.

And they really distorted what was going on. The real crime was there were people from all over the country and all over the world that had come because of that issue. People were there. They had 16,000 messengers to vote on the issue, but they never got to vote on the important Critical Race Theory issue.

And you may recall, in 2019, the Southern Baptist Convention approved Resolution Nine that says that Critical Race Theory and intersectionality could be used as analytical tools to understand race.

Leahy: Well, what’s the bottom line here, Carol? If your church is part of the Southern Baptist Convention, how should you respond to this?

Swain: Pretty much proponents of critical theory, they are controlling the agenda of the Southern Baptist Convention. And it’s very top-down. A lot of elitism.

And I think average people from the churches don’t have influence because the leadership structure is controlled by people that are able because of that power to control what comes to the floor, who gets to speak, and they can shut down debate.

And in our case, a resolution was not presented. It was 1,500 people.

Leahy: Not only is it unfair, but it seems very un-Christian to me, Carol.

Swain: Well, I was very troubling, and I know that there were other racial and ethnic minorities. We had people at six microphones lined up to speak, not just me. And some of them were racial and ethnic minorities.

No minority got to speak on that issue. One White man spoke against that resolution and pointed out that it was discrimination. And he got blasted by someone from the stage by the chair of the resolutions committee.

And then another person in the audience immediately called for the vote. And at that point, no one could speak against it. And so I was standing there. I’ve been there for a while, and no one on our side got to speak.

No one from the Conservative Baptist Network was there to address the issue put forth by the resolution. We were not allowed to speak. And so I was very disheartened. My immediate reaction was that I was ready to go home.

I am a messenger, meaning that I’m representing my church to participate. And I will be back there today.

Leahy: Well, look, go get ’em, Carol. And thanks so much for joining us today.

Listen to the full second hour:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nashville’s Fifth Congressional GOP Candidate Robby Starbuck on Growing Up and First Job Out of High School

Nashville’s Fifth Congressional GOP Candidate Robby Starbuck on Growing Up and First Job Out of High School

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed GOP candidate for Nashville’s Fifth District, Robby Starbuck in studio to discuss his bringing with Cuban immigrant parents and his first job at MySpace.

Leahy: In studio, Robby Starbuck is with us. Good morning, Robby.

Starbuck: Good morning. Thank you for having me.

Leahy: We just ran up the stairs.

Starbuck: We sure did.

Scooter: You guys need a little time to catch your breath? I got some perfect music.

Leahy: Robby needs less time than I do.

Scooter: I got here specifically at this time to make sure we got our exercise. It was one of those things, you know, where you hit every red light, every single red light on the way here.

Leahy: I do that some mornings.

Scooter: It happens. But in the nick time.

Leahy: Scooter goes 30 seconds. 15 seconds!

Scooter: I’m looking over and I’m in the last element in our thing here. And I’m like, uh oh, they’re not back. This is going to get weird.

Leahy: Robby Starbuck. Robby welcome to The Tennessee Star Report.

Starbuck: Thank you for having me. I’m very excited to be here. I know that pretty much all of my neighbors are in love with this show. The where they were very excited.

Leahy: Your neighbors have very good taste.

Starbuck: They do. They’re smart people.

Leahy: This is your first time in studio.

Starbuck: It is. It is. So I’ve been on a couple of times, but this is the first time I made it here for the full show.

Leahy: It’s totally more fun to be in studio.

Starbuck: It is.

Leahy: Even if we have to race up the stairs.

Starbuck: That makes it more fun.

Leahy: So that Scooter doesn’t have dead air when he opens up the show.

Scooter: There will be something on the air. I don’t necessarily want to know me, but there will be something. (Leahy laughs)

Starbuck: Well, tell me it’s not memorable. We’ll never forget the first time I was in studio.

Leahy: We will remember that. So Robby Starbuck, you have announced that you’re running for Congress in the Fifth Congressional District. Tell our listeners a little bit about yourself.

Starbuck: So if you don’t know me already, I started out sort of making my name in Hollywood as a director, producer. I directed and produced some of the biggest stars. Oscar-winning actors, actresses.

Leahy: See that’s kind of cool, right? Making a name in Hollywood?

Starbuck: Yeah. It’s not as cool as it sounds. That was where I had to make that decision to come out as a conservative. And it was a no-brainer for me because my family came from Cuba.

Leahy: Where in Cuba is your family from?

Starbuck: Ciego de Avila? It’s kind of a rural area. It’s not by the beach.

Leahy: And when did they come out of Cuba?

Starbuck: It was in the 60s. They all came at different times. So I can give you, like, one year, because the nature of it was like, say, like my grandpa. My mom came first, but my grandpa was held for a few years.

And the State Department had to get him out. So it was all in different stages, and some of my family members never got to leave. Some of them have died in Cuba, and some of them are still stuck there.

Leahy: Now, did your father come from Cuba?

Starbuck: No. My dad didn’t come from Cuba.

Leahy: Where’s your dad from?

Starbuck: I think he was born in Oklahoma.

Leahy: So your mom came here in the 60s? Where did she live when she first came here?

Starbuck: Florida. So my family started over completely. I mean, they lost everything. Even my great-grandpa started over as a janitor working two jobs.

Leahy: So they came with nothing. They had assets in Cuba.

Starbuck: They had their home stolen, their car stolen, every possession they had. I mean, for people that don’t know the history of Cuba, I mean, they took everything at gunpoint, and that’s it. You get to come with your shirt on your back. There was a legal process for it. They follow that process.

Leahy: A legal process for stealing your property.

Starbuck: Exactly. A legal process for stealing your property and then kicking you out basically.

Leahy: That could never happen here.

Starbuck: Oh, yeah. You know what? That’s the reason why I came out because I saw that there were all these steps that my grandparents, my mom had warned me about my entire life, about how this happened. How did we get to that place?

Leahy: How old was your mom when she came here?

Starbuck: She was 17.

Leahy: In 1962.

Starbuck: It was like 60, 63, 64.

Leahy: That was after the revolution. So she was probably 13 during the revolution. 59, 60.

Starbuck: And so for them, it was one of those things where they were far enough away, where nobody had really pushed up on them. And I think this is one of the things people can kind of relate to now is if you feel like it’s not at your front doorstep yet and you see the stuff happening right now in society.

Leahy: First they came for the. Then they came for the. Then they came from you.

Starbuck: One of the biggest regrets you’ll hear from Venezuelans and Cubans is that not enough people stood up. They kept waiting, thinking it’s not going to hit my doorstep.

Leahy: And then it did.

Starbuck: And then it did.

Leahy: Venezuela. I’ve been to Venezuela before.

Starbuck: It was awful.

Leahy: It was a great, beautiful place way back. Way back in 1972, 73. I guess it was a long time ago. You weren’t even born then. (Laughs) So where did your mom and dad meet?

Starbuck: They met in California. So part of my family still lives in Florida, part in Cuba and then part in California. So my mom and her great grandparents, I’m sorry. Her grandparents, my great grandparents, and her parents moved to California to start over there because one of them had gotten a job there. She met him I want to say, is West Covina was where they met.

Leahy: Southern California. And now what did your mom and her parents do for a living in California?

Starbuck: My grandpa ended up doing insurance. Super exciting. He was in insurance sales.

Leahy: We have a lot of insurance people listening to us.

Starbuck: I was being serious. It is super exciting. I mean, the stories that he has about his time and insurance is actually some exciting about that. For instance, a lot of people don’t know there are tornadoes in California. That was something that most people have no idea about. But there are tornadoes.

Leahy: I didn’t know that.

Starbuck: And so there’s a certain amount of tornado damage every year. I always found that interesting. So he got a job in insurance.

Leahy: What did your mom do? Did she go to college?

Starbuck: She was in real estate. Was actually the first person to go to college.

Leahy: So your mom’s in real estate and your dad in a meet and West Covina? And they get married. Where did you grow up? I grew up partially in Temecula.  So my childhood is a little interesting. I graduated at 16.

Leahy: From high school.

Starbuck: So I actually left home and had simultaneously finished my first year of College in a gifted program in California.

Leahy: Are you gifted Robby?

Starbuck: Here’s what’s interesting about that program.

Leahy: We have a gifted person in here.

Starbuck: What’s really interesting about it is that the program is now being trashed in California because they say that program is a racist because there are too many Asians in the program.

Leahy: And so your mom is Cuban. And that program, from what you graduated, is now being trashed as racist.

Starbuck: It’s being trashed as racist. And another kid, let’s say, who has sort of accelerated learning and is ready to move ahead faster, won’t be able to anymore. They’re gonna be pushed back.

Leahy: They got to move it back. Dumb it down right?

Starbuck: I mean, I thought we were supposed to celebrate exceptionalism and like wanting to push ahead.

Leahy: America traditionally celebrates exceptionalism.

Starbuck: We should. We always should.

Leahy: I don’t know what this thing is we’re in right now.

Starbuck: It’s definitely not that. It’s the antithesis of it. So I left at 16 and essentially started my life.

Leahy: So let’s go back. What did your dad do for a living? He was also real estate.

Leahy: Real estate. And so you grew up in which said you grew up in?

Starbuck: Temecula was the initial place.

Leahy: And Temecula is where in Southern California?

Starbuck: It’s kind of about an hour, 15 minutes north of San Diego.

Leahy: So is it Orange County?

Starbuck: No, not Orange County. No, it’s Riverside County.

Leahy: Riverside County. A little deserty?

Starbuck: It’s bigger now. There’s an Indian casino there.

Leahy: Where was the special program?

Starbuck: It was all over the state of California so you could qualify for it.

Leahy: You graduate from high school at 16 Temecula, and you’ve got your first year of college. What happens then?

Starbuck: I went to work while doing college for a guy named Brad Greenspan. He started a site called MySpace.

Leahy: So you were working for MySpace.

Starbuck: Not only that, but he had a website called Live Video. It was the first video streaming website on the Internet. And everybody thought this was a crazy idea.

Leahy: So you were going to college where I was going at the time.

Starbuck: I ended up switching to Saddleback, which was a college where I was able to work and then go to school.

Leahy: Where did you start?

Starbuck: Saddleback, Orange County. And I was able to work there like it was my work.

Leahy: So you were in Orange County working for the MySpace folks, working for Brad. And he had a couple of different websites. So did you work just for MySpace or for other websites,

Starbuck: It was a whole company. A bunch of different things. So we produced original content, original shows.

Leahy: I mean, when you say you work for him, did you write code?

Starbuck: No, I was producing shows.

Leahy: How old are you?

Starbuck: 16. So how do you monetize all this stuff on the Internet?

Leahy: How do you connect with Brad.

Starbuck: Through a recruiter. Actually, a guy named Trent, who I’m still really good friends with today, who I flipped from being a Bernie Bro to being a Trump voter. He was my recruiter. He recruited me there.

Leahy: How did you connect with this guy?

Starbuck: He found me. Honestly, I’ve never asked him how he found me, but he found me.

Leahy: Had you done some video stuff?

Starbuck: I had done some video stuff, and I had sort of large social media already then. And I think that’s how he found me. That’d be my guess. That was my assumption.

Leahy: Was there a MySpace office or did you work out of your house?

Starbuck: There were multiple. So there was an office for E Universe, which was the parent company. And then you could work from home, work from the studio if you were shooting stuff. It was very free.

Leahy: Where was the universe located?

Starbuck: There was an office in LA. and then there was a satellite office in Orange County.

Leahy: Did you work in the satellite office?

Starbuck: I did both. It was depending on what we were doing.

Leahy: How old were you when you did this?

Starbuck: 16.

Leahy: Are you thinking, how did this happen?

Starbuck: Not really.

Leahy: Was it because you were gifted? (Laughs)

Starbuck: No. You’re never going to forget that.

Leahy: Yes. Every time we introduce you, ladies and gentlemen, the gifted Robby Starbuck. (Laughs)

Starbuck: No, no, actually, I wish they had a different word for those programs.

Leahy: I’m just teasing.

Starbuck: No, I know. It was really funny the first time I met with Brad was like, look, the weird thing for me here is like, don’t talk about your age with people because they’re gonna feel really weird answering to a 16-year-old. So you just look young. It was like this thing at work that you just didn’t talk about.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Robby Starbuck” by Robby Starbuck.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Network of Enlightened Women’s University of Florida Co-President Ophelie Jacobson Talks About Her Recent Op-Ed and Being a Conservative on College Campus

Network of Enlightened Women’s University of Florida Co-President Ophelie Jacobson Talks About Her Recent Op-Ed and Being a Conservative on College Campus

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed the Co-President of the (NeW) Network of Enlightened Women at the University of Florida, Ophelie Jacobson to the newsmakers line to discuss her recent op-ed on cancel culture and being a conservative student in college today.

Leahy: We are joined now on our newsmaker line by Ophelie Jacobson. She’s a University of Florida sophomore studying journalism and political science. She’s co-president of the Network of Enlightened Women chapter at the University of Florida.

She penned an op-ed that was first published at the Sarasota Herald Tribune. That’s a Gateway-Gannett publication in Sarasota on March 7. The title is, Can We Just Cancel the Cancel Culture? Good morning over Ophelie.

Jacobson: Good morning. Thank you so much for having me on.

Leahy: Are you in Gainesville today or are you at home?

Jacobson: I’m currently at home in Orlando, Florida.

Leahy: Do you go back to classes in the fall and will they be regular? Will you have to wear masks and will you be in dorms?

Jacobson: So I attend the University of Florida. I’ll be back in person. I was in person for the past year, actually staying in a dorm for my sophomore year. A lot of my classes were online over Zoom, but just recently, actually, on Monday, the university sent out an email saying that masks will not be required on campus for those who are vaccinated, and they’ll be strongly suggested for those who are not vaccinated yet. I’m really excited to see a return to normal on campus in the fall.

Leahy: How weird is it to go to college and do most stuff online and have to wear these dopey masks? What was that year like for you?

Jacobson: It’s definitely different. It definitely has its ups and downs. But with online classes you can wake up 10 minutes before your class, roll out of bed and hop on Zoom. But with in person classes you have to get up, get ready.

But I’m really looking forward to going back to in-person classes because you really get that connection with your professors, with your fellow peers, and students. And you’re also able to concentrate more when you’re in a classroom setting rather than just staring at your computer for hours on end.

Leahy: Let me read the first few lines of your op-ed. It was excellent by the way.

Jacobson: Thank you.

Leahy: Florida State University removed a statue of Francis Epps VII, the former Mayor of Tallahassee and grandson of Thomas Jefferson. Protesters in Chicago tried to tear down a statue of Christopher Columbus. A statue of President George Washington was vandalized and knocked down by seven people in Los Angeles. All of this during the year 2020 alone. What was their sin?

Jacobson: I think their sin was definitely the cancellation of America. Cancel culture, as we’ve seen in the past year, it ceased to destroy a person or a company’s image based solely on personal disagreement. So I would argue in the year 2020 alone, we saw a direct attack on America and American history.

And so the canceling of America is very concerning in our country because if we’re not able to have statues that just simply represent our past as a nation, that yes maybe it has negative parts in American history, but it’s our history nonetheless.

And we should be upholding those basic principles of our history in order to teach our future generations. If you just think about what we’re going to teach the next generation of leaders, they’re not going to have anything to base their history off of if they walk down the street and all the statues are torn down.

Leahy: I learned something from your piece about this fellow, Francis Epps VII. He was a grandson of Thomas Jefferson, born in Monticello and moved down to Tallahassee when he was, I don’t know, 27, 28. A young man when there wasn’t much there in Tallahassee.

Turns out he was a slave owner. But also he donated the buildings and land upon which Florida State University was built. Did they have a list of his sins when they removed his statue? What was the controversy in Tallahassee surrounding that?

Jacobson: The main controversy was that he was a slave owner. And that, for them, that was enough. They said, “We have a long history of addressing difficult racism and inclusion issues on this campus and we know there is so much work to do as the nation faces great unrest and an urgent call for change. We as a University will continue to listen, learn, and evolve.”

And that was said by President John Thrasher of FSU. So that was one of their ways, I guess, of evolving in the wake of everything that was happening in 2020 was to remove this statue, which is unfortunate because like you said, he donated a lot to the University.

I think the students at the University owe him a lot as well for studying there and for using the buildings that he donated. It’s unfortunate to see that just because he was a slave owner in the past, that’s enough for him to get canceled and for a statue to be torn down.

And we saw that again, as I mentioned with Christopher Columbus, President George Washington. It’s super sad to see the cancellation of tangible reminders of those aspects of American history, which, according to these people, are deemed offensive and derogatory.

And by doing that, we actually cancel the opportunity for like I mentioned, future generations to learn about our country and to learn from our past. People always say history repeats itself. How are we supposed to learn from our past if we cancel all tangible reminders of it? And we can’t really learn from our past in order to prevent history from repeating itself in the future.

Leahy: Did you go to attend public schools in Orlando before you went to the University of Florida?

Jacobson: I was actually born in Boston. I attended some public schools there. I lived in San Diego, California, for nine years. I attended some public schools there. And in my last two years of high school, were in Melbourne, Florida.

Leahy: How was American history taught in these public schools that you attended?

Jacobson: For the most part, American history was pretty basic. We learned a wide variety of topics. Everything from the Civil War up until the late 20th century. I think it was pretty basic. But now what we’re seeing with critical race theory, the 1619 Project is a direct attack on our American history.

And again, every single country has its flaws but that doesn’t mean we should exclude that from the history that is taught in classrooms.

Leahy: You’re finishing your second year at the University of Florida. A beautiful campus, by the way, I’ve been down there. I like the University of Florida. When you get to be there I’m sure you’re enjoying the campus there, I would imagine.

Jacobson: Yes, it’s beautiful.

Leahy: What’s it like being a traditional American who likes to study American history? What’s it like at the University of Florida with your peers and the professors there over the past? What has your experience been?

Jacobson: It’s definitely a challenge that has its ups and downs. Being a journalism student as well definitely has its personal challenges. Just last year, I was in a reporting class, and I had a Professor and one of the first assignments that we had to do was to write a profile story about ourselves, our goals and aspirations, and what we wanted to do in the future.

And in that profile story, I’d mentioned that I want to work at a conservative media organization such as One American News or Newsmax. And two days after I submitted the assignment, I got a lengthy email from the professor criticizing my career goals and saying that OANN was fake news. I shouldn’t aspire to work there.

And it was really disheartening to see. Normally, you see professors attack students for their political beliefs. But for a professor to attack my career goals, that was something that I’d never really experienced. I found myself I wasn’t defending my political belief at that moment, I was just defending again my career goals.

But because those goals happened to relate to conservative media outlets, I was automatically targeted. So what I did was I compiled a list of lawsuits that CNN and MSNBC have faced. And I sent that back to him. And I said, if we want to talk about fake news, let’s talk about CNN. Let’s talk about MSNBC.

And so he sent me an email back saying that oh actually, you’re a great journalist now, and I’m looking forward to seeing your work. (Leahy chuckles) And the rest of the semester, I worked really hard to prove him wrong. I gave 100 percent of my all my assignments, so he didn’t have anything to dock me for simply for being a conservative.

This is just one of the many examples. I know I’m not alone. A lot of the girls in our organization have shared similar experiences. So it’s just really unfortunate to see that Conservatives are being targeted on our campuses.

Leahy: What grade you get in that class?

Jacobson: I got over 100 percent. (Chuckles)

Leahy: Well, very good. He was biased, to begin with, but at least you showed him through fact and hard work, and they couldn’t give you a bad grade.

Jacobson: Exactly.

Leahy: I like that. When we come back, I want to talk a little bit more about what’s going on on campuses. Critical race theory and what it’s like to be a conservative in college today.

Listen to the full first hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Ophelie Jacobson” by Ophelie Jacobson. Background Photo “Florida Campus” by WillMcC. CC BY-SA 3.0.