Saturday, June 4, 2011

GOP congressional candidate Ilario Pantano attracts supportive crowds at N.C. Republican Convention.

Click here to find out more!
By Verne Strickland / Saturday, June 4, 2011

"There is real excitement for the conservative movement and the Republican Party here in North Carolina," said GOP congressional candidate Ilario Pantano of Wilmington today.

Pantano was interviewed as the NCGOP convention moved into its second day at the impressive new Wilmington Convention Center. The state Republican event is in Wilmington "for the first time in recent memory," according to GOP leaders here.

"President Obama has helped to accelerate the urgency we feel by his choice of Democrat convention being in Charlotte," said Pantano. "The result is Republicans are not wasting any time, and they’re mobilizing with great speed. The turnout here at our 2011 convention feels more energized than it did in the convention prior to the recent election."

This Republican State convention has drawn over 1,650 Republican faithful -- an all-time attendance record, said NCGOP State Chairman Robin Hayes, who won re-election to the post today.

Pantano, who is steadily gearing up his re-election effort, is enjoying enthusiastic attention at the meeting, which has provided considerable opportunity to address the crowds on hand.

"This convention in an off-year is more amped even than in the last election, and its exciting to see. It's taking place in our congressional district, so there's a great crowd of our supporters here," Pantano said. 

He shared the stage during the opening night banquet on Friday with popular conservative Congressman Allen West of Florida, and noted that West "was very supportive of my candidacy in his speech."

During his own turn at the podium, Pantano said his remarks were devoted to honoring U.S. military men and women serving in harm's way.

"We need to remember the principles they are fighting for, and to protect those principles, because they’re giving their energies and their lives, dying and bleeding everyday for principle. We must honor those same principles here at home in our belief system, and that starts with our trust and love of the Lord. If we abandon that, we abandon jeopardize the social fabric of this country that has made America exceptional."

In closing, Pantano said American citizens "should put men and women in office who are worthy of leading our fighting forces. These young people are America's sacred treasure. We fail them if we don't have strong, honest leadership at all levels of government."

The 2011 North Carolina Republican State Convention concludes on Sunday.

NC Republican State Convention continues in Wilmington with enthusiasm, resolve, and unity.

By Verne Strickland
Saturday, June 4, 2011

WILMINGTON, NC -- The first North Carolina Republican State Convention in memory rolls into its second day today with enthusiasm, intensity and a commitment to hard work and organization at every level of the Party.

A estimated turn-out of over 1,300 delegates and party faithful is gathered at the sparkling new Wilmington Convention Center for the event.

It is clear enough that the GOP does not intend to let moss gather on its stunning victories in the U.S. Congress, the State Legislature and at virtually every level of government.

In a series of interviews by USA DOT COM, the drumbeat was clear – capture the White House, the Governor’s office, and the Council of State, and install Republicans with high values and respect for the Constitution.

Robin Hayes, NCGOP chairman, showed a flinty resolve in an interview for USA DOT COM on Friday evening at the Riverside Hilton.

We had a great day. A lot of people with enthusiasm, with commitment to a one-term presidency for Obama, and for Governor Perdue. We are focused on the mission and how to accomplish the task – preparation, inspiration, perspiration. We have to do the work, knock on the doors, make the calls, put up the signs. 

VS: The main goals I hear you and your fellow Republicans talk about is capturing the White House, Governor’s Mansion, and Council of State. 

Each of these offices is so important. The White House is obviously the big prize. President Obama has done more damage in three years as it relates to debt than all of the previous presidents put together! That’s astounding – astonishing! And in spite of the very clear message from the American people to stop spending, he continues to spend, and our debt increases by about $4.3 billion per day. Somehow he feels that if you tax oil companies and rich people he is free to keep on spending. That’s inherently wrong and it will not balance the budget. 

VS: And what about in North Carolina? What are the main problems we face here?

You know, we’ve had a hiring freeze. The only outfit hiring in North Carolina is the State Government. That's a big problem. We’ve got to understand that we don’t spend what we don’t have. That’s what Allen West made clear tonight, that’s what people who are voting understand more than ever, and that’s what’s going to take back North Carolina in 2012, in spite of the unlimited money and hired people that President Obama already has in the State.


Keynoting the evening banquet was celebrated conservative and patriot Congressman Allen West, who hails from the 22nd Congressional District of Florida.

His appearance created considerable excitement, and he did not disappoint. We interviewed him after the Friday evening convention program.

VS: What would you cite as the main theme of your presentation to our Republicans at the opening banquet?

The high point was talking about the history of this great State going back to the Revolutionary War, the battle fought at Guilford County Courthouse, and bringing us up to today where we have the battle that is being waged in ideological ideas. 

I was just drawing a parallel between the sacrifices and the service that our men and women give that come from this State. From Fort Bragg, from Seymour Johnson, Camp Lejeune, Cherry Point – this is a great military State, and now they need to incorporate that same hope and commitment as the continue the fight to save this country. 

VS: But you remind us that it’s not all guns and glory. What precautions are you challenging your fellow Republicans to keep in view?

I think the main thing is not to lose sight of your principles and your values, not allow the liberal media to select your candidates or your platforms. As Ronald Reagan so vividly demonstrated, he was not going to be compromised on those principles, and I think that’s what the United States of America is looking for.


On tap for the Saturday convention agenda are consideration of resolutions by the voting delegates, elections for the office of Party chairman and vice chairman, and speeches by a roster of GOP gatekeepers, including Pat McCrory, Thom Tillis, Dr. Ada Fisher, Andrew Breitbart, Mick Mulvaney, Jessica Innis, Frank Williams, and others.

The Saturday evening gala honors Tom Fetzer, former NCGOP chairman, and features U.S. Congressman Tim Scott from the First District of Florida.

USA DOT COM coverage of this historic N.C. Republic Party convention will continue with subsequent news posts showcasing information from a series of exclusive interviews gathered at the event.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

'If you attack President Obama, you will be called a racist,' says black NCGOP official. 'If I attack him I'll be called a Republican.'

By Verne Strickland, June 2, 2011

“If you attack President Obama, you will be called a racist. If I attack him, I'll be called a Republican.”

Speaking was Dr. Timothy Johnson, vice chairman of the N.C. Republican Party, who keynoted the June meeting of the Lower Cape Fear Republican Women’s Club.

While Johnson is black, his audience was white. Johnson had made his point.

He spoke to a small but keenly interested audience which gathered Thursday at the Mai Tai Restaurant on Wilmington’s Oleander Drive. 

Confident and direct, Johnson is running for re-election to the office he holds. He is being challenged by Wayne King of King's Mountain, NC. King was unable to attend the LCFRWC session. The election will take place at the NCGOP convention June 3-5 in Wilmington.

Here are some of his comments to the Republican women:

“We want to move forward to reclaim the White House, the governor’s mansion, the Council of State, and make sure that we hold onto the General Assembly. We have a lot of work to do, and we have to be serious about getting it right.

“We’ve got to recognize that the Democratic National Convention is coming to Charlotte. This indicates that we are not just a place on the U.S. map anymore, we live in a true battleground state. 

“We will be in the national spotlight.We don’t want to allow Obama to use this occasion as part of his agenda to get re-elected.”

 Johnson’s personal biography is truly impressive. These are but a few of the highlights:

Retired Major Timothy Johnson, Ph.D. made history on June 13, 2009, when he was elected Vice Chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, becoming the first Black American to hold the position since the party’s inception March 27, 1867. 
Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Dr. Johnson graduated from Benedictine High School and was a member of two state championship football teams. It was there he got the bug to get involved with politics. 
In preparation, Timothy earned the Boy Scouts of America’s highest rank, the Eagle Scout Award, at the age of 14; he has continued to be a servant leader throughout his adult life. He is also Founder and National Chairman, The Frederick Douglass Foundation. 
Dr. Johnson completed 21 years of military service and received numerous military honors on Active, Reserve and National Guard duties with the United States Army, serving as an enlisted soldier and commissioned officer (attaining the rank of Major).
Twice elected Chairman of the Buncombe County, NC Republican Party, Dr. Johnson was a delegate to the 2008 Republican National Convention, as well as a panelist at the 2008 Black Republican Forum held in New York.   
For more on Dr. Timothy Johnson and The Frederick Douglass Foundation, please go to:

 Dr. Johnson had some friends in the audience when he arrived at the GOP luncheon in Wilmington, and it is certain that he added a few more.

Sondra North, a retired Wilmington school teacher, voted for him when he successfully ran for the N.C. Republican Party vice chairmanship in 2009.

"I think he is a very qualified person for this job and I am going to vote for him again," she said. "Tim made a comment here today that really impressed me. He said that we need to refrain from being politically correct, and learn how to be politically direct. I think he practices what he preaches."

Parents upset (surprise, surprise) after school yearbook lists George W. Bush, Dick Cheney as worst people of all time.

Verne Strickland Blogmaster, June 2, 2011


Cutest couple. Most likely to succeed. Class Clown. Top 5 Worst People of All Time.

OK, so that last list probably isn't seen in most school yearbooks, but it's raising the ire of parents and community members in Arkansas. The Fox affiliate in Little Rock reports the names in the Russellville Middle School yearbook include, in order, Adolph Hitler, Osama bin Laden, Charles Manson, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

Parents were outraged when they discovered the list, according to the station, and, in reaction, the school district had the list with black duct tape.

Superintendent Randall Williams says the printing of the list was "an oversight," Fox 16 reports, and said he was disappointed to learn the tape could simply be peeled off the page.

"I'm furious as a parent and as a board member and as a tax payer and as a resident of Russellville," School Board Member Chris Cloud, who has two children in the district, tells the station. "It's wrong."

Williams tells Fox 16 the yearbook sponsor -- a teacher -- is "very, very, very" upset that she didn't pay more attention the page with the list, and that the yearbook editing process is being reviewed.

"I think she maybe just scanned the whole page and went on," he tells the station, adding that he can't talk about disciplinary action.


Obama mocks Jesus Christ and the Holy Bible. (If we knew then what we know now!)

Verne Strickland Blogmaster
June 1, 2011

Video & article uploaded by on Oct 12, 2008 
(Reported as 'not available' at this time)

A top U.S. evangelical leader is accusing Sen. Barack Obama of deliberately distorting the meaning of the Holy Bible. 

In comments aired on his radio show, Focus on the Family founder James Dobson criticized the Democratic presidential nominee for comments he made in a June 2006 speech to the liberal Christian group Call to Renewal. 

In the speech, Obama suggested that it would be impractical to govern based solely on the word of the Bible, noting that some passages suggest slavery is permissible and eating shellfish is disgraceful. "Which passages of scripture should guide our public policy?"

Obama asked in the speech. "Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is OK and that eating shellfish is an abomination? Or we could go with Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith? Or should we just stick to the Sermon on the Mount?"

Obama continued, to cheers from his followers: "So before we get carried away, let's read our Bible now," Folks haven't been reading their Bible." 

He also called Jesus' Sermon on the Mount "a passage that is so radical that it's doubtful that our Defense Department would survive its application."

Dobson said Obama should not be referencing antiquated dietary codes and passages from the Old Testament that are no longer relevant to the teachings of the New Testament. "I think he's deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own world view, his own confused theology," Dobson said, adding that Obama is "dragging biblical understanding through the gutter." 

Obama asksk: "Am I required in a democracy to conform my efforts in the political arena to his bloody notion of what is right with regard to the lives of tiny babies?"  

Dobson said the suggestion is an attempt to lead by the lowest common denominator of morality:"What he's trying to say here is, unless everybody agrees, we have no right to fight for what we believe.What the senator is saying there, in essence, is that 'I can't seek to pass legislation, for example, that bans partial-birth abortion, because there are people in the culture who don't see that as a moral issue,' 

 Dobson continued: "And if I can't get everyone to agree with me, than it is undemocratic to try to pass legislation that I find offensive to the Scripture. Now, that is a fruitcake interpretation of the Constitution." 

In a stunning display of ignorance- and in a speech you will NOT see in the mainstream media, because even they apparently understand how ignorant Obama was on the issue, Obama exposes his disdain for Christians, and exposes his disdain for the word of God, by taking the typical, petty, ignorant position, that the bible advocated slavery and the stoning of children, apparently implying that Christians should live their faith by reinstating customs that were obviously secular laws that were in place in a time long ago. 

Obama not so subtly implied that Christians are hypocrites because they dont agree to put themselves back under the laws of Moses that are no logner relevent to Christians today! The laws of Moses were a Jewish-only set of laws. 

Barack Obama claims he found the Lord, whatever that means to him, but his obvious contempt for Gods word exposes the fact that Christ is not the one in control of his heart. His speech was a blatant misrepresentation of Christianity, and it was a speech whose intent was to malign and denigrate Christians, and to denigrate this great nation of ours. 

Stoning children for blatant disrespect of parents and of God, was a Jewish-only commandment meant to purge evil from among Gods elected people. Nowhere in the bible does God command anyone other than His own elected people, the Jews, to purge evil in such a manner. 

Barack Obama however is apparently too ignorant of biblical truth to realize this fact, and apparently he feels that he is big enough to call God's commandments toward the Jews into question. 

Obama is also apparently too ignorant of God's word to understand that Christians today are not under the law of Moses, and that many edicts in the bible were meant to tell the people that they needed to obey ALL laws, even the secular laws which included laws that allowed slaves, and that the Jews were not just bound to the laws that God instated, but also to the cultural laws at that time.
Obama may not like that- because it completely refutes his petty attempt at maligning God, God's Word, Christians and this great nation of ours. Obama may claim to be a Christian, and he may even succeed in fooling a couple of people, but to those who know better, we see very clearly that his words betray what he claims his heart stands for. 

Obama again declares June 'Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month'.

Verne Strickland Blogmaster   June 1, 2011

President Barack Obama has proclaimed June 2011 “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month,” painting the LGBT experience as the “story about the struggle to realize that all people can live with dignity and fairness under the law,”

Obama highlighted the steps his administration has taken for gay rights, including passing the repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” legislation and giving the LGBT community more access to federal housing programs.

Obama made the same proclamation in June 2010, picking up where President Bill Clinton left off in 2000, when he marked the month “Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.”

President George W. Bush angered many gay rights activists by saying no to the June celebration, and then-Attorney General John Ashcroft’s Justice Department barred a group of employees from celebrating the month.

June was chosen in honor the 1969 Greenwich Village riots at the Stonewall Inn where gay rights advocates clashed with New York City police over alleged discrimination.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

GOP's Ilario Pantano says Congressman McIntyre violated election law. Oh, my!

Verne Strickland Blogmaster   May 31, 2011

StarNews file photos

Ilario Pantano (left) and Mike McIntyre ran a contentious congressional race in 2008.
Published: Tuesday, May 31, 2011 at 6:19 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, May 31, 2011 at 6:19 p.m.

Columbus County Department of Aging Director Ed Worley shot a video last year as part of Rep. Mike McIntyre's "Mike Works for Me" campaign.

The spot highlights several issues that McIntyre, a Democrat, was championing for Worley and senior citizens, including federal funding for a new building for seniors. While "Mike" might be working for him, when Worley worked for Mike by shooting the video, he may have violated federal law.

It is illegal to have a state employee to use "... his official authority for the purpose of interfering with, or affecting, the nomination or the election of any candidate...," according to page 126 of the Federal Election Campaign Laws.

McIntyre's opponent, GOP hopeful Ilario Pantano, accused the congressman last week of violating the law during an anti-corruption rally in Columbus County.

"Mr. Worley appeared in Congressman McIntyre's video, in his office, with his name badge on, using his position as a public official to affect the outcome of an election," Pantano said.

Worley confirmed in a phone interview Tuesday that McIntyre's campaign visited the Columbus County senior center in June 2010 and shot the video in his office. He declined to comment on the legality of the video, but did say that McIntyre visited the senior center several times and helped get the county $450,000 for the new building.

"We could not find help nowhere else," Worley said.

Officials with McInytre's office said campaign workers were looking into the allegations but as of 6 p.m. Tuesday the StarNews had not received a response.

Federal Elections Commission spokeswoman Julia Queen said the agency investigates elections violations on a complaint basis. She said the agency had not received any complaints about the McIntyre video. 

She also said the state board of elections could be the agency to handle the alleged violation since it involved a state employee. 

State law prohibits public employees from doing campaign activities while at work or using state equipment or resources for political purposes. Violating the campaign law is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Officials with the state board of elections could not be reached for comment. 

Pantano argued Tuesday that the $450,000 federal appropriation mentioned in the video was conveniently presented to Worley on Oct. 17, the first day of early voting. McIntyre was in attendance in what Pantano said was little more than a campaign stop.

"If $250 dollars in the economic threshold that triggers (Chief District Court Judge Jerry) Jolly to action, as it was in the case of his impugning of District Attorney Jon David's integrity, then surely he will be compelled to ferret out the details of a potential $450,000 ethical violation that happened under the Judge's nose and was reported in his local Whiteville paper," Pantano said.

Last month, Jolly nixed traffic court because of what he deemed an inappropriate campaign donation of about $250 to David's campaign. The donation was made by the operator of StreetSafe, a hands-on driving program that aims to teach young drivers the costs of risky behavior behind the wheel. Jolly stated in an administrative order he issued that he believed the donation relationship was inappropriate and could throw the court into "disrepute."

Pantano's accusations are the latest in what will likely be a nasty and contentious election season.

The 2010 race between McIntyre and Pantano became one of the most talked-about races in North Carolina. Pantano gave McIntyre his toughest re-election contest in seven tries.

McIntyre won with 54 percent of the votes, but Pantano garnered nearly 100,000 votes in the 7th Congressional District, which includes all or parts of 10 Southeastern North Carolina counties.

Shelby Sebens: 343-2076
On Twitter: @ShelbySebens

Sen. Hagan: 'I would like to be the Marines' advocate on the Hill." Cool -- which hill?

Verne Strickland Blogmaster

After spending half a day aboard local Marine Corps bases, Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC) praised the troops for the work they continue to do at home and overseas.
In a trip that coincided with Memorial Day, Hagan, who serves as chairwoman of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, spent Tuesday morning aboard Camp Lejeune and New River, meeting with top officials and receiving briefings on the state of the forces.
At Camp Lejeune, Hagan met with the commander of Marine Special Operations Command, Maj. Gen. Paul Lefebvre. Later, she was transported via V-22 Osprey to New River for her first visit to the air station, where she met with Col. Jeffrey Hewlett, the air station’s commanding officer, and with leadership from II Marine Expeditionary Force and Wounded Warrior Battalion East.
Hagan refrained from specifically addressing any topic in a brief question-and-answer session with local media but did note that much of her discussions with MarSOC and II MEF leadership focused on her work with the Emerging Threats subcommittee.
“The Emerging Threats subcommittee is really looking at those threats around the world, having to do with trying to figure out how we can keep the (improvised explosive devices) from exploding, looking at nuclear proliferation, looking at weapons of mass destruction, chemical weapons; and a lot of what we’ve actually talked about today is how to combat these emerging threats to our Marines and to the other branches,” she said.
Hagan said that she was a visual person, and being able to see firsthand the work of local Marines and the wounded troops at Wounded Warrior Battalion gave her new enthusiasm about supporting the work of the troops. 

While she declined to answer questions about whether she would return to Capitol Hill with specific action points in reference to local Marines, Hagan said she wanted to continue the tradition of support of the armed forces that made North Carolina the most military-friendly state in the country.
“I think our nation is incredibly proud and incredibly supportive of our Marines,” she said. “And I would like to be the Marines’ advocate on the hill. I want to be sure that we continue to equip our Marines with all the equipment and training that they need to get their mission done.”
Hewlett, who addressed the media with Hagan, said the troops appreciated her visit.
“I think MarSOC and the Wounded Warrior Regiment brought up some great points, and Senator Hagan was extremely receptive to that,” he said. “We’re coming up on our 10th year at war in about four months, and it’s been a tough slog for the young Marines and sailors and their families. I just thank God that we have elected representatives like the senator that really are doing everything they can to make that long hard slog as good as it can be.”
Hagan spent Memorial Day in Wilmington at the Battleship North Carolina, honoring veterans and commemorating the 50th anniversary of the ship’s arrival in North Carolina.

Contact military reporter Hope Hodge at 910-219-8453 or

Blood, sweat and tears is theme at special Memorial Day event at Crossfit Gym in Wilmington.

By Verne Strickland  May 31, 2011

It was not the original blood, sweat and tears, but it surely was one of the most touching and memorable.

The blood was shed by two valiant American fighting men who died in service to their country. One a U.S. Navy Seal, the other a Green Beret, they were singled out for a special tribute on Memorial Day at Crossfit Wilmington gym on Market Street.

The sweat was poured out by over 250 grateful men and women –among them veterans of all ages – who turned out in serious heat and humidity for a grueling one-hour work-out – some wearing combat boots and body armor – as a show of support for the families of the fallen American heroes.

The tears were shed by the grieving family members of Master Sgt. Ben Bitner, and by many of the appreciative participating crowd on hand.  Sgt. Bitner was killed in action in Afghanistan on April 23, 2011 -- Easter week-end. 

CrossFit Wilmington owner Tony Cowden said the "Murph" workout is named after a fallen Navy SEAL named Michael Murphy. Cowden says the workout is intense and takes a lot of hard work.

The heartfelt support included not only energy and spirit, but also a generous sum of money raised to fund scholarships for the children of one of the servicemen killed in action.

Ilario Pantano, a former U.S. Marine officer with two combat tours under his belt, was one of the organizers and participants.

With a hoarse voice, still catching his breath, drenched in sweat, a drained but game Pantano consented to an interview moments are completing the grueling "Murph" course. He was moved and subdued as he talked about why he was there. Few congressmen or candidates today are likely to have had such a closeness to our Americans who serve in uniform. 


The run is a mile out, then we do 100 pull-ups, 200 push-up, 300 squats, then run a mile back. And it’s over 90 degrees right now in the heat of the day, and we did that on purpose because we wanted to make it as miserable as possible so people would know Lt. Michael Murphy was experiencing, and Sergeant Bitner was experiencing when he was killed in April of this year. 
We’re just doing it light today. Some of us have boots and 20-pound flak jackets on just to try and connect with our brothers and sisters. There were so many of them lost in this fight, over 7,000 patriotic young men and women, plus 40,000 veterans that are missing some part of themselves that you can see, and over a million missing some part of themselves that you can’t see. 
So we’re just here today to remember them. We’re here to live for them, as they would want us to live, and to celebrate, because as long as we remember them they’ll live forever.
VS: It was a wonderful event, with a really impressive turn-out.
You know, John 15:13 tells us, 'No greater love can a man have than to give his life for his brother.' That scripture means both men and women. But that’s what we’re here for – we can sweat, strain, bleed a little bit, donate a few bucks, so some kids can go to college. We can do that. How many are here today, would you guess? I figure over 200. They did sell out of 100 tee-shirts. It was a great event. We are grateful for all the help, for the wonderful turn-out, and the generosity of Tony and CrossFit.

This summary from the "Murph" fundraiser was tallied in Pantano for Congress:

Yesterday, over 250 people came to CrossFit Wilmington for the Memorial Day Fundraiser. They gave their time and sweat to honor the men and women who’ve made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms. The “unofficial” numbers tallied for the fundraiser are well over $11,000. Approximately $2,000 for The Wounded Warrior Project and $9,000 for the sons’ of MSG Ben Bitner, recently KIA. We cannot thank you enough.

WECT-TV6 Wilmington ran this news piece to promote the Memorial Day event:

Wilmington gym honors fallen soldiers; raises money for family

Posted: May 28, 2011 6:53 PM EDT Updated: May 28, 2011 7:06 PM EDT
Master Sergeant Benjamin Bitner with his son; Courtesy: Tony Cowden
Master Sergeant Benjamin Bitner with his son; Courtesy: Tony Cowden

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A Wilmington gym owner is remembering two of his fallen comrades with a Memorial Day fundraiser.

CrossFit Wilmington is hosting a "Murph on Memorial Day" fundraiser on Monday. The event is named after Lt. Michael Murphy, who was killed in action in Afghanistan.
Proceeds and donations go to the Wounded Warrior project and to the family of Master Sergeant Benjamin Bitner, a Green Beret, who was killed in April while serving in Afghanistan. He left behind a wife and two young boys. Money from the event will go to a college fund set up for the children.
Tony Cowden, who owns CrossFit, said the event will include a work-out named after Murphyn. The work-out, called 'Murph', requires participants to run one mile, do 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 body weight squats and then run one more mile.
If that isn't tough enough, some people will actually do that work out with a 30-pound flak vest.
There will be prizes for the three top finishing men and three top finishing women.
"While a lot of folks are going to be at barbecues and having a beer,we are going to be out here paying true honor to those who served their country with a little bit of sweat," said Cowden. "A small price for us to pay."

CrossFit is located at 6603 Market Street in Wilmington.

Contact Info:

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Federal Judge says National Cemetery can't prohibit Christian prayer at Memorial Day Event

Verne Strickland Blogmaster 
May 30, 2011

By Don Byrd / Baptist Joint Committee

When the Department of Veterans Affairs planned for its annual Memorial Day ceremony at the Houston National Cemetery, it naturally sought to include prayer for such a solemn event.

Just as naturally, it sought to keep the prayer non-sectarian. After all, soldiers of all faiths have given their lives in service to the country.  So, the cemetery director asked Pastor Scott Rainey not to include specific denominational mentions, to keep the invocation as open and inclusive as possible.

So, Rainey did what any self-respecting minister to all people would do when asked to consider the religious beliefs of his entire audience: he went to court. And a federal judge has now enjoined the VA from enforcing this non-sectarian standard, causing the government to back down entirely and allow the prayer to go on as planned.
Attorneys for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs informed a federal judge in Houston May 27th the agency has reconsidered its position on religious-specific prayer at Houston National Cemetery, agreeing a pastor can utter “Jesus Christ” during his Memorial Day prayer.
“(The agency) will let the prayer go on this Monday,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred Hindrichs told U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes.
Complicating this story from a legal perspective is the fact that apparently the invocation is sponsored by a private group, though it will be held on hallowed public land. 

But from a human perspective, this is not complicated. Americans of all faiths - and those of no faith - are honored on Memorial Day. Their family and friends will be visiting cemeteries to mourn their loss and celebrate their life. 

And they deserve to hear an invocation solemnizing the event that does its best to speak to them, regardless of particular religious perspective. Any minister whose sensibilities are offended by that notion should think twice about accepting an invitation to pray at such an inclusive, multi-faith event as a community's Memorial Day service, whether a government agency demands it, or not. 

For what it's worth, Rainey's proposed prayer strikes a respectful tone to all, as he explains that it is delivered in Jesus' name. But Judge Hughes' decision would seem to open the door to all manner of prayer in the future that would not be so respectful. 

If the VA has no jurisdiction over the event, then that single-faith reality may be permissible - and clearly they have decided not to fight the ruling - but it is not okay.

Murph on Memorial Day Tribute & Fundraiser -- Get Set to Sweat!

Verne Strickland Blogmaster May 29, 2011

CrossFit Wilmington is hosting a “Murph on Memorial Day” Fundraiser on Monday, May 30th

We will be honoring all the men and women who serve, have served, and particularly, those who’ve fallen while serving in the Armed Forces … with sweat and a little pain.

Donations and proceeds will go to the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) and to the College Funds of Gunnar and Rogue Bitner.  

Gunnar and Rogue are the sons of fallen Green Beret and close friend to CFW, MSG Ben Bitner.  KIA, 23 APR 2011 – Afghanistan.  “Murph” named in honor of Navy Seal and Medal of Honor recipient  Lt. Michael Murphy, KIA, 28 JUN 2005 – Afghanistan, is known as one of the most grueling workouts in the CrossFit and military communities.                          

SG Benjamin F. Bitner -                                                
KIA 23 APR 2011

Lt. Michael Murphy - KIA 28 JUN 2005 Afghanistan

The Workout “Murph” is:
Complete the following as fast as possible…

1-Mile Run
100 Pull Ups
200 Push Ups
300 Squats
1-Mile Run
*With body armor/weight vest if you so choose.

We can scale the workout to fit anyone’s fitness level.  We’ll run 1/2 Murph and 1/4 Murph workouts. Start times are 2:00pm, 2:30pm, and 3:00pm, and CFW will only be open during these designated times.

$10 to participate
$20 to participate and receive an event t-shirt
$10 – 1 raffle ticket for a chance to win items from sponsors below
$20 – 1 raffle ticket for Glock 26 pistol
$20 – 1 raffle ticket for Remington 870 shotgun


Pre-made, convenient Paleo