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Trump’s evangelical advisor: Make kids scared of Jesus again and stop teaching evolution to end mass shootings

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During an appearance on Fox News this Thursday alongside Ethan Bearman of Left Coast News, megachurch pastor and Trump evangelical advisor Robert Jeffress pushed back against skepticism over the “thoughts and prayers” response to mass shootings commonly echoed by religious conservatives, saying that the solution lies in teaching children that God will hold them accountable for their actions.

In the segment which he shared on the YouTube channel for his church, Jeffress argued against the claim that evangelicals aren’t willing to find real-world solutions to gun violence, but added that “if we depend upon legislation alone to solve the gun problem, we’re going to be sadly disappointed.”

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Speaking to Fox News host Shannon Bream, Jeffress, who is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, said “there is a spiritual component” to gun violence that should be addressed “not in place of legislation, but certainly alongside any proposed legislation.”

Bream then mentioned a recent op-ed by former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, who argued that mass shootings are “never going to end” unless America has a “reawakening of morality and values.”

Bearman responded that if that were the case, Western Europe, which is much more secular than the U.S., “would be suffering from far worse mass shootings that we are suffering.”

“It’s important that we remember that these weapons will kill dozens more people in the time that it took Cain to beat Abel to death with a stone,” Bearman said. “We need to remove those weapons from people’s hands so we’re not killing so rapidly.”

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Jeffress fired back, saying he’s “not arguing that we shouldn’t do anything.”

“I think we all understand that the Second Amendment has limits to it, just like the First Amendment with free speech does,” he continued. “We don’t believe everybody has a right to have a nuclear weapon. We don’t believe that four-year-olds ought to have guns. I’m not arguing against legislation, but I’m saying that one thing we can do is to quit this devaluation of human life in our society that is seen by the glorification of violence in our culture, by the mass slaughter of a whole class of citizens — the unborn, by teaching our children that they’re nothing but an evolutionary accident instead of teaching our children that they are created by God, they are of value to God, and they are accountable to God for their actions.”

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Trump aides desperately try to downplay ‘order’ to US companies to leave China

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Donald Trump's top aides on Sunday downplayed the idea of US companies being forced to abandon China any time soon, as an edict from the president ordering businesses to start looking for alternatives has been met with skepticism.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House economics advisor Larry Kudlow took to the airwaves from France, where Trump is participating in the G7 summit, to smooth out tensions in the business community prompted by Trump's Friday tweet.

Trump said he has "no plan now" to bring US companies in line, and his aides quickly reinforced the message.

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Trump sparks confusion at G7 before doubling down on China tariffs

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President Donald Trump doubled down Sunday on his hard line against China after sowing confusion with statements that he might be willing to soften a trade war G7 partners fear threatens the world economy.

At the G7 summit in Biarritz, France, Trump announced a major trade deal with Japan and promised more of the same with Britain, once Brexit is done.

But the positives were overshadowed by a mix-up over his apparent expression of regret for the latest escalation in the US-China dispute.

"I have second thoughts about everything," he conceded to reporters when asked if he regretted his decision on Friday to ramp up tariffs on all Chinese imports, worth some $550 billion, in retaliation for Beijing's earlier hike of levies on US goods.

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Persecuted Christians eye long-sought freedom in Sudan

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Sudan's Christians suffered decades of persecution under the regime of Islamist general Omar al-Bashir. Now they hope his downfall will give the religious freedom they have long prayed for.

Deep within the maze of dusty alleys that honeycomb Omdurman, Khartoum's sprawling twin city, Yousef Zamgila's church is not visible from the street.

It is hidden in the courtyard of a friend's home and consists of a few iron benches, a pulpit and crosses hastily painted on pillars holding a corrugated roof.

"The previous centre got destroyed because we didn't have the right papers. They always refused... So we use the land of our neighbours," says the Lutheran reverend.

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