The World and Everything In It — April 1, 2021

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Good morning!

A special document called a vaccine passport may soon be required before you can go back to the things you used to do. We’ll hear the latest.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Also a professor wins a court battle for free speech over which pronouns to use.

Plus how one couple is helping Chinese adoptees find their birth families.

And commentator Cal Thomas on ensuring fair and honest elections.

REICHARD: It’s Thursday, April 1st. This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.

BASHAM: And I’m Megan Basham. Good morning!

Time now for the news with Kent Covington.

KENT COVINGTON, NEWS ANCHOR: Biden unveils new $2.3T spending plan » Speaking in Pittsburgh Wednesday, President Biden pitched his plan for another multi-trillion-dollar spending package.

BIDEN: It’s not a plan that tinkers around the edges. It’s a once-in-a-generation investment in America, unlike anything we’ve seen or done since we built the interstate highway system and the space race decades ago. 

The price tag: roughly $2.3 trillion dollars.

The proposal, billed as an infrastructure investment would devote about $620 billion dollars to transportation-related upgrades. But critics say much of the proposal has little to do with infrastructure.

The plan sets aside $400 billion for caregiving initiatives for the disabled and the elderly. More than $200 billion is devoted to affordable housing.

It also calls for an array of environmental and green economy initiatives that the president says will create millions of good union jobs.

He proposes paying for the plan, in part, by raising the corporate tax on foreign earnings from 21 to 28 percent.

Republicans are not impressed. Texas Congressman Kevin Brady:

BRADY: No president has ever raised business taxes trying to rebuild an economy from an economic crisis. I think at the end of the day, this will be the biggest economic blunder, frankly, of our lifetimes. 

Democrats on Capitol Hill are signaling that they’re once again prepared to use a process called budget reconciliation to pass the plan without any Republican support.

The president is expected to unveil yet another huge spending plan later this month centered on child care, healthcare, and education. Together the plans could cost up to $4 trillion dollars.

Pfizer says COVID vaccine protects younger teens » Pfizer announced Wednesday that its COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective in kids as young as 12.

The announcement could be one more step toward beginning shots in this age group before they head back to school in the fall.

Pfizer’s announcement came after a study of more than 2,000 U.S. volunteers between the ages of 12 and 15 including 12-year-old Caleb Chung.

CHUNG: Participating in this trial and potentially helping other kids to feel safe and want to get the vaccine in the future when it becomes publicly available was some way that I could actually help out. 

The study showed no cases of COVID-19 among fully vaccinated adolescents.

Some of the kids reported side effects were similar to young adults such as pain, fever, chills and fatigue. The study will continue to track participants for two years to collect data on long-term protection and safety.

Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech in the coming weeks plan to ask the FDA and European regulators to allow emergency use of the shots starting at age 12.

Capitol Hill police officers sue Trump over riot injuries » Two Capitol Police officers injured during the Jan. 6th Capitol riot are suing former President Donald Trump. WORLD’s Paul Butler reports.

PAUL BUTLER, REPORTER: Officers James Blassingame and Sidney Hemby sustained injuries in hand-to-hand combat as they tried to hold off Capitol intruders.

And in a 40-page lawsuit, they say Trump is directly to blame for spawning the violent siege. Both officers are asking for unspecified compensation along with damages of more than $75,000 dollars each.

Hemby said he’s still receiving medical care for hand and knee injuries. Blassingame said rioters shoved him into a stone column and some hurled racial slurs at him. Both said they’re still suffering emotional trauma.

More than 100 officers sustained injuries during the riot and one officer died the next day.

Trump attorneys have maintained that the former president called only for a peaceful gathering and was not responsible for the Capitol siege.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Paul Butler.

Biden administration reverses Trump transgender military polices »

The Biden administration on Wednesday reversed Trump-era restrictions on transgender people serving in the military.

Speaking at the Pentagon Defense Dept. spokesman John Kirby announced newly revised policies.

KIRBY: They prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity of an individuals identification as transgender. They provide a means by which to access into the military in one’s self-identified gender. 

Transgender service members will also receive what the administration calls medically necessary transition-related care.

The changes come after a two-month Pentagon review, which President Biden announced just days after taking office.

The new policies are largely a reset to Obama era policies. They will be effective in 30 days.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has also called for a reexamination of the records of service members who were discharged or denied reenlistment under the previous policy.

Justice Dept. probing allegations against GOP Rep. Gaetz » The Department of Justice is investigating GOP Congressman Matt Gaetz over a former relationship.

The DOJ is probing allegations that Florida lawmaker had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl.

Gaetz emphatically denies any criminal wrongdoing, and said he is the victim of an extortion scheme involving a former Justice Department official.

GAETZ: On March 16th, my father got a text message demanding a meeting wherein a person demanded $25 million dollars in exchange for making horrible sex trafficking allegations against me go away.

He said his family has been cooperating with the FBI and said his father was wearing a recording device, at the FBI’s direction, to “catch these criminals.” He demanded the Justice Department release the recordings.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told reporters Wednesday that it’s too soon to make any determinations about the case.

MCCARTHY: I just read the story. Those are serious implications. If it comes out to be true, yes, we would remove him if that was the case. But right now Matt Gaetz says it’s not true, and we don’t have any information, so let’s get all the information. 

Gaetz went public about the investigation shortly after The New York Times first reported it. He said—quoting here—“No part of the allegations against me are true.”

I’m Kent Covington.

Straight ahead: vaccine passports offer pandemic freedom.

Plus, Cal Thomas on Georgia’s controversial voting reforms.

This is The World and Everything in It.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: It’s Thursday, the first day of April, 2021.

Thanks for joining us for today’s edition of The World and Everything in It. Good morning, I’m Mary Reichard.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: And I’m Megan Basham.

First up: vaccine passports.

AUDIO: I’ve got a golden ticket.

It’s not a golden ticket that lets you into a mythic chocolate factory. But it may give you access to activities like international travel or indoor concerts. Remember those?  So what’s the catch?

WORLD’s Anna Johansen Brown has our story.

ANNA JOHANSEN BROWN, REPORTER: People keep wishing things would “get back to normal.” Unrestricted travel. Indoor dining without seating limits. Dragging yourself to a gym.

Israel has already rolled out part of its solution: The Green Pass. If you’ve been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, or you can prove you’ve had COVID and are now immune, you get a stamp of approval that gives you exclusive access to gyms, hotels, theaters, pools, and concerts.

    AUDIO: [song]

This is the first “back to normal” concert in Tel Aviv. Everyone still wore masks, but they had access to a pre-pandemic luxury that most people have only dreamt about for the last year.

Whether for international travel or a trip to the pub, vaccine certificates are fast becoming part of the new normal. Although if you think about it, they’ve already been around for a while.

HODGE: Will vaccine passports become kind of standard fare? They already are. Period. They already are. 

James Hodge is a professor at Arizona State University. He specializes in vaccine law.

HODGE: Health care workers in the United States every year gotta get vaccinated for influenza. School kids going back to school, gotta get vaccinated, college, universities, you’re not arriving on campus if you’re not vaccinated for measles, mumps and rubella. You don’t get to go to certain countries right now unless you’re vaccinated for specific conditions.

For example, you can’t go to some parts of Africa unless you’ve had the Yellow Fever vaccine. Hodge says international travel is pretty clear cut.

HODGE: Yeah, no, your constitutional rights kind of stop at the door. As you arrive at the EU, they could set their own conditions for whatever passport they feel is necessary to welcome you into the United Kingdom, France…Canada or Mexico could do it. If you want to enter you will enter under their specific guidance.

But when businesses or states place restrictions, it gets a little more complicated. Especially in the United States.

Art Caplan directs the medical ethics division at the NYU School of Medicine. He doesn’t think the U.S. government will start issuing vaccine mandates. At least, not yet. But businesses? Absolutely.

CAPLAN: Because of private business in the free market can require whatever the heck it wants. I can say, you can’t come into this hotel unless you wear a 10 foot turban. It’s the equivalent of saying no shoes no shirt no service, they can set conditions for coming in. 

New York state recently announced that it would roll out an app called the Excelsior Pass. It lets people log their vaccination or negative test status. Then, if you want to go somewhere like Madison Square Garden, you have to present the pass to get in.

CAPLAN: Remember, nobody has a right to go to Madison Square Garden, nobody has a right to go on a cruise. I know people sometimes get their backs up and say you can’t make me do this. Well, it’s true. Nobody can make you do it. But they can certainly say, you can’t come in here, you can’t go there. And they might even be able to say, I’m not going to hire you, unless you show me that you’re vaccinated.

But Caplan admits that is going to create friction. Some people don’t have access to the vaccine, and won’t for a long time, especially in poorer countries that don’t have stockpiles to distribute. And some people, for health reasons or on religious grounds, don’t want the vaccine. And those groups of people will be at odds.

CAPLAN: You could have a two class situation for a while, the vaccinated and the unvaccinated with the vaccinated having a lot more liberty, freedom, movement to go where they want, easier to get employment. 

There are dozens of apps and systems in development right now, and that means a whole lot of unknowns. What counts as “vaccinated” or “immune”? What if this app or this business allows the AstraZeneca vaccine, but this state or this organization doesn’t? What about China’s vaccine, or Russia’s—do those count? Do you have to be vaccinated two weeks prior to the concert you want to go to, or only 10 days? What if vaccine immunity doesn’t last forever, or it turns out you can still spread COVID even after you’ve been vaccinated?

Art Caplan says because of those unanswered questions, it might be jumping the gun just a bit to start requiring vaccine passports this early in the game.

But businesses are desperate for anything that will allow them to return to normal. Dorit Reiss teaches law at the University of California.

REISS: Businesses want to do two things. One is they want to avoid having to close down again or having to reduce activity again, and two, they want to signal we’re good actors, you don’t have to hit us on the head with public health measures again.

Reiss says it’s important to have some kind of standards across the board. But maybe those should be up to trade organizations instead of governments.

Art Caplan says businesses should also keep in mind people who choose not to be vaccinated or who can’t be vaccinated.

CAPLAN: One way to accommodate is to say, well I don’t want to get vaccinated on religious grounds or even personal grounds or health grounds, but what I will do is get a COVID test every day.

That’s not practical right now. Not everyone has access to a COVID test every day, but Caplan thinks that could be where we’re headed.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Anna Johansen Brown.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Up next, reigning in university thought police.

A federal appeals court waded into the debate over gender pronouns last Friday.

A unanimous panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit upheld a Christian professor’s right to not address students by their preferred pronouns.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Five years ago, Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio, disciplined Professor Nicholas Meriwether for declining to address a male student with feminine pronouns.

That sparked a years-long legal battle over Meriwether’s First Amendment rights.  That battle has seen a few twists and turns. Here to fill us in on the case is Steve West.

He’s an attorney and writes about religious liberty issues for WORLD Digital. Good morning, Steve!

STEVE WEST, GUEST: Good morning, Mary.

REICHARD: Well, we touched on the origin of this case a moment ago, but fill us in here on what happened. A biologically male student wanted to be addressed as a female, and Professor Meriwether said what?

WEST: He said no, I can’t do that. Picture this interaction: The student who by appearance is male demands to be addressed with feminine pronouns, is openly hostile, profane, and tells Meriwether that he’ll have him fired. Yet he held firm and reported the incident to school administrators.

What he told them was that he believes “God created human beings as either male or female, that this sex is fixed in each person from the moment of conception, and that it cannot be changed, regardless of an individual’s feelings or desires.” He also believes that he cannot “affirm as true ideas and concepts that are not true.”

REICHARD: Was that it? It’s either my way or the student’s way?

WEST: No, he offered a couple of alternatives. He said, “look, I’ll just use the students last name and no pronoun,” and initially that was accepted. But the student complained again.

REICHARD: Okay, what was the university’s response then?

WEST: School administrators gave him an ultimatum: address the student with feminine pronouns or else be disciplined. Once again, Meriwether suggested an accommodation. He said, “What if I use the requested feminine pronouns but place a disclaimer in the course syllabus explaining my views?

REICHARD: I take it that wasn’t good enough for the school?

WEST: No, it wasn’t. The provost of the school laughed at him. The department head told him Christianity was based on fear and shouldn’t be taught about at the school. In the end, a letter of reprimand was placed in the professor’s file finding that he had created a hostile environment in the classroom with a warning that further action would be taken.

MR: Alright, so at that point, Meriwether sued to assert his First Amendment rights. And that case bounced around in federal courts for a while?

WEST: Right.  Long process, but he lost in the trial court, then appealed.

MR: What was Meriwether’s legal argument? And what did the school argue?

WEST: He said this is about my right to free speech and free exercise of religion. He said that while I can’t say everything I want, as I work for the government, when I am speaking on a matter of public concern and in an environment that should be encouraging intellectual debate, I should be able to speak freely and consistent with my religious beliefs. He said the university was trying to compel him to speak words he disagreed with.

The university said this is no more than calling roll—a perfunctory kind of thing—and we have a right to tell you how to do it.

REICHARD: So what did the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals have to say in its ruling last week?

WEST: The judges were unanimous in overruling the trial court. They said a professor doesn’t lose his or her First Amendment protection when they step into the classroom. They emphasized how gender identity is a hotly contested issue of public concern and one on which professors have a right to freely speak or, as in this case, not be forced to adopt a position by their speech that they disagree with.

Judge Thapar said, “If professors lacked free-speech protections when teaching, a university would wield alarming power to compel ideological conformity.”

REICHARD: So is the battle over? Has Meriwether won?

WEST: Not yet. The case goes back to the trial court so that Meriwether can actually prove what he has said—all of which, at this point, the court has assumed. The school could also ask the full appeals court to hear it, or ask the Supreme Court to review it.  But the odds are against either court taking it up. School administrators may also want to find a way to diffuse this, but in the hyper-charged climate we are in, they face a lot of pressure to dig in and fight.

REICHARD: What does this ruling tell us? Does this help to define the free speech and religious rights of educators across the country?

WEST: In the university context, it’ll signal strong protection for faculty to express their viewpoint on matters of public concern—whether in teaching, research, or writing, even outside the classroom, like in social media and blog posts. Yet it will percolate through other areas like student speech in the university setting, where administrators have also adopted restrictive speech codes.

And I think it recognizes that pronouns signal a deeper issue: an ideological battle is being waged between transgender ideology and long-established views of sexuality and marriage and, at very least, as this court recognized, those topics need a robust debate.

REICHARD: You’ve thought about this for some time, Steve.  Any final thoughts on this case?

WEST: Just one: This case also shows what can happen when one person stands up for what they believe and yet does so with respect and with grace. Professor Meriwether lived out Colossians 4:6, where Paul says “Let your speech be always gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer each person.” That’s a challenge to all of us.

REICHARD: Steve West writes about religious liberties for WORLD Digital. You can read his work at You can also subscribe to his free weekly newsletter on First Amendment issues, Liberties. Steve, always good to have you on. Thank you!

WEST: Always a pleasure, Mary.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Well, here’s a story of perseverance for you.

Seventeen years ago, a 50-year-old Polish man took Poland’s driver’s license test for the first time. Unfortunately, he didn’t pass.

Undeterred, he tried again and again and again.

And he still hasn’t passed. He’s now taken the test 192 times, according to state media outlet TVP. He’s spent more than $1,500 dollars in testing fees.

Perhaps history contains a lesson for him, though.

In 2009, a 68-year-old South Korean woman passed her driver’s license exam after taking it more than 900 times!

It’s The World and Everything in It.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Today is Thursday, April 1st.

We’re glad you’ve turned to WORLD Radio to help start your day.

Good morning. I’m Mary Reichard.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: And I’m Megan Basham.

Coming next on The World and Everything in It: international adoption.

For almost 40 years, China’s Communist party enforced its One Child Policy to curb the country’s growing population. The Chinese government says the policy prevented 400 million births through abortions and forced sterilizations.

REICHARD: The policy had many consequences, including so-called “excess” children filling Chinese orphanages. So in 1991, China began allowing international families to adopt thousands of Chinese children. Over the next 25 years, Americans took home more than 80,000 of those children.

Now, some of them are trying to find their Chinese birth families. But that’s no easy task. WORLD’s Sarah Schweinsberg met up with a couple in Utah trying to help.

BRIAN: I started scrapbooking, the old fashioned way. Early on, when there was just one kid, it was quite easy.

SARAH SCHWEINSBERG, REPORTER: Brian Stuy and his wife, Longlan, sit at their kitchen table, stacks of scrap books spread between them.

These picture books tell the birth stories of the couple’s three daughters: Meikina, Meigon, and Meilan. Each of them adopted from China as toddlers.

BRIAN: I would put their you know, their stories, and try to kind of give them an idea of where they were from.

At least, Brian and Longlan scrapbooked what they thought were their daughters’ stories.

In the 90s, Brain Stuy began seeing news stories about how under the One Child Policy, Chinese families were abandoning baby girls on the sides of roads. He wanted to help.

So in 1998, with his first wife, he adopted Meikina from a Chinese orphanage.

BRIAN: It was such an amazing experience on so many levels.

Four years later, and after a divorce, he adopted his second daughter, Meigon.

Brian adopted Meikina and Meigon from two different orphanages. But both places told him similar stories. The girls’ families abandoned them along a road or under a tree. That was a common story.

But Brian wanted to be able to tell his daughters more specifics.

So, he returned to China. A Chinese shopkeeper named Longlan offered to help Brian do research. Together, Longlan and Brian tracked down Meigon’s newspaper finding ad. That’s a picture of each child the Chinese government publishes in a newspaper. It lets the public know the state has custody.

BRIAN: I adopted Meigon at 18 months old. The earliest photo I had of her was 14 months. And the finding ad was when she was four months old, and seeing that was like, a color, it was full color ad. I was like, This is amazing. 

Brian decided other adoptive American families would also want their child’s ad.

BRIAN: So we just loaded up as many of these newspapers as we could carry them home.

In a closet, they still have stacks of newspapers with thousands of pictures of babies.

LONGLAN: Those are all the finding ads.

Longlan reads Meigan’s ad.

LONGLAN: It says she was find on July 14, 2000. At the hivju house hospital Guangzhou City. 

After that first research trip, Brian Stuy and Longlan decided to take many others. They got married, adopted their third daughter, Meilan, and created, a service to help connect Chinese adoptees with their birth families. The Stuys visited orphanages all over China.

BRIAN: The families were primarily just interested in Hey, go take a picture where my daughter was found and get some, an outline of her history before I adopted her.

But as they interviewed orphanage directors and studied data, the Stuys began to doubt the stories about how the children had been abandoned.

They noticed odd patterns.

BRIAN: They would use the same location, finding locations over and over and over again…the Civil Affairs Bureau or the school or the hospital. 

Their suspicions were confirmed in 2010 when Longlan returned to Meikina’s orphanage. She tracked down the two women listed in Meikina’s paperwork as her “finders.” That’s who finds an abandoned baby and brings it to an orphanage.

Longlan says one of the women made a startling admission.

LONGLAN: Be honest with you, I never find your daughter because for your daughter’s adoption, they just needed a name to put down on the paperwork. That’s it. 

They also discovered Meigan’s finding story was made up as well as Meilan’s.

The One Child Policy had created the perfect opportunity for child trafficking.

The Stuys say the government’s family planning services would pressure and threaten families to give up children, especially baby girls. Then officials would lie to the Chinese families saying the child would be adopted by someone in a nearby village.

Orphanages would also pay traffickers and officials for these babies.

BRIAN: And instead of going to a family in the next village, they go to the orphanage and they receive 2000 Yen and then the child is adopted internationally. 

Then orphanages would lie to the international families telling them the babies were unwanted. Then, families would pay up to $40,000 in today’s dollars to adopt a Chinese baby.

These revelations made the Stuys’ work feel even more significant. Now, it was about bringing peace to both adopted kids and birth families looking for their children.

In their basement office, Brian and Longlan work side-by-side behind computers.

BRIAN: We’ve created this huge spreadsheet,

From the finding ads, they’ve built spreadsheets of Chinese children who were put up for adoption. One province alone had 30,000 children.

Longlan is also creating a database of Chinese birth families looking for their kids.

LONGLAN: If you look at how many birth family I got in touch with, it’s more than that. Like 1000s, oh yeah. Most of them ask, hey, have you find my daughter?

The Stuys then ask the birth families and adopted children to submit DNA samples.

BRIAN: We have decided the best way to search for a birth family is just to test as many birth families as possible.

When they find a DNA match, they link the family back together. So far, they’ve connected more than 80 adopted Chinese children with their birth families.

BRIAN: When you get that match, and the adoptee is excited and the birth family is overjoyed. And their birth family is crying because they know that their child is alive and healthy and happy. That is a rush like nothing else.

For many adopted children, it’s also healing to learn that they were loved.

LONGLAN: I think the moment somebody know their story, they are happy that they never abandoned.

Brian and Langlan Stuy are still looking for Meikina and Meigon’s birth families. So, they’ll keep collecting DNA, one birth family at a time.

BRIAN: If we stop, who will do it? That means that there’s going to be adoptees and birth families that will never be reunited. And so at this point, that has convinced us to continue to do it. It probably will convince us to always do it.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Sarah Schweinsberg in Lehi, Utah.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Coming up next, a preview of Listening In. This week, host Warren Smith talks to New York Times bestselling author Ellen Vaughn. Her latest project is a biography of missionary Elizabeth Elliot. Her husband, along with four other missionaries, were killed in 1956 by members of the Auca tribe in Ecuador. The media attention catapulted her to international prominence.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: For her biography, Ellen Vaughn had unparalleled access to Elizabeth Elliot’s journals and personal letters. Through this very private lens, Vaughn captures a very different side of one of the 20th century’s most well-loved evangelical authors.

ELLEN VAUGHN: But I think what I loved and what I related to was her journey from being a very dutiful, know all the right answers in your head, raised in the Christian home, knows all five verses of every hymn, every scripture verse, who also being very intellectual in her faith. That person who maybe had been living a bit in legalism, and then in Ecuador, all kinds of stuff breaks loose.

And it’s not just Jim Elliot’s violent death, it was other deaths that happened to Elizabeth Elliot in the jungle–that are mostly revealed again, in these journals. And the sense of “wait, God is not the picture I had in my head. He is far more mysterious.” This life is not just a matter of, “Oh, well, God did this. So A and B, and C and D could happen…” and it’s all tidy and we see the glorious triumphal ending for the kingdom.

She really bucked against that tide, that spinning of the story, that sadly, can be in human nature, and certainly was expressed a lot in in sort of the triumphal missionary stories of the 20th century. So what I loved–what surprised me–was her humanness. Her foibles, her weaknesses, and at the same time her, her liberating discovery of who God really is, apart from just the images.

BASHAM: That’s Ellen Vaughn talking to Warren Smith. To hear their complete conversation, look for Listening In tomorrow wherever you get your podcasts.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Today is Thursday, April 1st. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Megan Basham.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard.

Commentator Cal Thomas now on the effort to prevent voter fraud.

CAL THOMAS, COMMENTATOR: At his news conference last week, President Biden said Georgia’s new voting law “makes Jim Crow look like Jim Eagle.”

The term Jim Crow came from a song written by Thomas Dartmouth “Daddy” Rice. He was one of the first performers to wear blackface makeup and modeled his “Jim Crow” skit after an exaggerated, highly stereotypical black character. He first performed the skit in 1828. By 1832, the character was a staple in minstrel shows. According to the The Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia, “white audiences were receptive to the portrayals of blacks as singing, dancing, grinning fools.”

President Biden and other Democrats apparently want us to believe America has made no racial progress since then.

Democrats should display some humility when it comes to African-Americans and voting. It was members of their party who opposed civil rights legislation, defended slavery in the 19th century, and promoted “black codes” in Southern state legislatures that denied many rights to former slaves. Those were elected Democrats who stood in schoolhouse doors, denying access to black children. Democrat sheriffs clubbed people in the streets during demonstrations and sicced dogs on them, among other indignities. It was also the party that required “poll taxes” and “literacy tests” for blacks, violating their right to vote.

The Georgia law leaves in place many voting options, in addition to showing up on Election Day. It eliminates signature matching, which should appeal to both parties. Vote tabulators will no longer have to subjectively decide the authenticity of two signatures.

Instead, voters will receive an ID number with their mail-in ballots or applications. Those numbers must match. In-person voters who do not have an ID can easily obtain one.

How is it racist to do a better job of ensuring ballot integrity and boosting confidence in election outcomes?

The Georgia law seeks to prevent vote harvesting and voting by people who don’t exist, or who have moved out of state. And it’s now being duplicated in other states with Republican majority legislatures.

Today’s Democrats like to claim “voter suppression” when Republicans attempt to make sure every ballot is legitimate. But we can’t afford to repeat the claims of suspect voting behavior, miscounting, and questions about machines and illegal voters that Donald Trump lobbed at the 2020 presidential election.

Most people are willing to accept the defeat of their candidates if they believe the system was fair and the tabulations accurate. That’s what the new Georgia law aims to do. It has nothing to do with Jim Crow, or for that matter, “Jim Eagle.”

I’m Cal Thomas.

MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Tomorrow: Culture Friday.

And, I’ll review the new musical A Week Away, about a juvenile delinquent at a Christian youth camp.

That and more tomorrow.

I’m Megan Basham.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard.

The World and Everything in It comes to you from WORLD Radio.

WORLD’s mission is biblically objective journalism that informs, educates, and inspires.

“Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”

Go now in grace and peace.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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