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Al Bawaba: Just when it seemed relations between the US and Pakistan couldn’t get worse, a new wrinkle has developed, this time over US sponsorship of a gay pride event in Islamabad. Conservative religious groups in Pakistan have sharply criticized the US Embassy in Islamabad for sponsoring the country’s first ever gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender pride celebration on June 26.
ADF President and General Counsel Alan E. Sears at the American Thinker: It’s a telling fact that the tallest structures in towns across this land used to be church spires. Now they’re often eclipsed by banks or government buildings. While this isn’t to say that money or government is a bad thing, it is to say that our focus, our evaluation of what’s most important in this life, has taken a dramatic turn, and churches seem to be getting the worst of it.
AFP: Plans to introduce Islamic banking as one of the models of non-interest financial services has touched off intense controversy in religiously divided Nigeria.
Joel Oster at the Speak Up Movement Church Blog: In Bronx Household of Faith v. Board of Education of the City of New York, the Second Circuit issued an opinion that directly contradicts the last thirty years of Supreme Court precedent, takes away a vast amount of legal protection for religious speech, and I guarantee will make every Christian scratch his or her head, and mutter, “What in the world were they thinking?” Let me give you a little context . . .
The Hill: What we need is real privatization of security, but not phony privatization with the same TSA screeners in private security firm uniforms still operating under the “guidance” of the federal government. Real security will be achieved when the airlines are once again in charge of protecting their property and their passengers. In the meantime, this week I am introducing the American Traveler Dignity Act . . .
Fox News: he people who packed onto the grounds were pastors and lawmakers, war vets, moms who lost children in battle, and just regular everyday Americans. Americans like Kimberly Walker who are not happy with the cemetery’s director.
Fr. John Flynn at Zenit: In 2005, French demographer Christophe Guilmoto calculated that if Asia’s birth ratio had remained at its natural level the continent should have an additional 163 million females. This is more than the entire female population of the United States, Hvistendahl noted.
Boston.com: Ray Sullivan, campaign director for the group Marriage Equality Rhode Island, tells The Associated Press on Tuesday that his group is looking ahead to next year’s legislative session to pass gay marriage in the Ocean State.
Christian Concern: THE UK’s leading professional body for counsellors and psychotherapists has declared its full support for an amendment to the Health and Social Care Bill, tabled by Nadine Dorries MP and Rt Hon Frank Field MP. If passed, women considering abortion would have a legal right to independent, non-compulsory counselling.
LifeSiteNews.com: Thursday’s debate on a citizens’ bill to totally ban abortion in Poland saw over 40 Polish parliamentarians from numerous parties take to the floor to support the measure, giving powerful, and often extremely personal statements.
LifeNews.com: The Planned Parenthood abortion business is suing the state of Kansas over the passage of a new law that re-directs taxpayer funding from it to local health departments. But that hasn’t stopped the state from sending most of its funding elsewhere. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has already shifted $204,000 . . .
Jonathan Adler at The Volokh Conspiracy: The Honorable Michael McConnell responds to claims that the debt ceiling is unconstitutional and that Section 4 of the 14th Amendment authorizes the President to issue additional debt if necessary to meet existing debt obligations. Here’s a taste . . .
Dissenting in a free-speech ruling about violent video games, Justice Clarence Thomas said the First Amendment was written at a time when parents were understood to exercise complete control over minor children.
UPI.com: The U.S. Supreme Court term that ended last week will go down in the history books as a triumph for the First Amendment, sometimes at the cost of genuine pain for grieving families, and the ongoing emergence of Justice Anthony Kennedy as one of the most powerful people in U.S. government.
Latimes.com: Conservative scholars who admire Thomas say he, more than any justice, exemplifies the legal theory of “originalism” — the idea that the Constitution must be interpreted solely as its words would have been understood by those who approved it 222 years ago. “He looks to how the Constitution was understood at the time of the ratification. He goes to first principles. And he is willing to challenge precedents that deviate from the original understanding,” said John Eastman, a Chapman University law professor and former Thomas clerk.
AP: Democrats and liberals have a nightmare vision of the Supreme Court’s future: President Barack Obama is defeated for re-election next year and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, at 78 the oldest justice, soon finds her health will not allow her to continue on the bench.
Detroit Free Press: A federal appeals court today struck down Proposal 2, the 2006 Michigan referendum that banned affirmative action in college admissions, employment and contracting, setting up another U.S. Supreme Court showdown on the issue.
Rasmussen Reports: A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that two-out-of-three American Adults (67%) believe states should be allowed to prohibit the sale or rental of violent video games to minors. Just 28% disagree.
God and Country Blog: The Department of Defense Inspector General recently issued a report of its investigation into the improper “leak” last fall of the DoD survey on the policy most often known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” (Ironically, the publicized IG report — available on a public website — is also annotated “For Official Use Only,” as was the leaked survey.)
Strasser, Mark, Equal Protection, Same-Sex Marriage, and Classifying on the Basis of Sex (January 6, 2011). Pepperdine Law Review, Vol. 38, pp. 1021-1052, 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1735989
Hat tip: Religion Clause Blog Rosas Martinez, Alejandro , Algunas Implicaciones Jurídicas Del Matrimonio Entre Personas Del Mismo Sexo En La Ciudad De México (Some Juridical Implications of the Same Sex Persons Marriage at México City) (June 29, 2011). Revista …
Religion Clause: This week end, the Philippine Star, the Manila Sun Star, and the Philippine Daily Inquirer are all reporting on disclosures by new management of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office that six Catholic dioceses and another Catholic organization in 2008 and 2009 received the equivalent of over $175,000 (US) from the government-run lottery agency that supports health and general welfare activities.
Ken Blackwell and Ken Klukowski at The Huffington Post: Time magazine’s cover story shows the U.S. Constitution and asks, “Does it still matter?” Reading this story, we kept waiting for Emmanuel Goldstein to show up for the Two Minutes of Hate. It was difficult to discern whether we were reading Time, or Orwells’ 1984.
Religion Clause: Contradicting an AKI report on Friday that was noted on Religion Clause, Christian News Today reported yesterday that Iran’s Supreme Court has overturned the death sentence for apostasy imposed by a lower court on Christian pastor Yousef Nadarkhani.
AP: India’s health minister has derided homosexuality as an unnatural “disease” from the West, drawing outrage Tuesday from activists who said the comments set back the country’s campaign for gay rights and its fight against HIV.
SCOTUSblog: The Obama Administration takes the rare step of urging the Court to block temporarily a state from executing a convicted individual — in this case, a Mexican national who contends that Texas violated his rights under an international treaty, the Vienna Convention.
OneNewsNow.com: Jeremy Tedesco of the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) says this aggressive tactic is inappropriate. “It’s not needed. What’s needed is [for] the school…to stop bullying…for everyone because the bully is an equal opportunist,” he contends. “It doesn’t matter the reason; they’re going to bully you anyway.”
Chicagotribune.com: Same-sex marriage supporters, however, will denounce the poll as bogus because it was sponsored by the Alliance Defense Fund, a group that defends religious liberty, and Public Opinion Strategies, a polling firm that serves Republican clients.
Familiokratos Coalition on the Christian Newswire: Roger Kiska, legal counsel Alliance Defense Fund, talked on the Sovereignty of Member States and the Legal aspects of Hungary’s new Constitution, which protects life from the moment of conception and enshrines the concept of the natural family.
Rev. Austin Miles at Examiner.com: That is only a few of the cases this year. Other Christian law firms who are funded by Christinas and can represent defendants free of charge, include Thomas More Law Center, Alliance Defense Fund headed by Alan Sears, and American Center of Law and Justice (ACLJ) headed by Jay Sekulow . . .
LifeNews.com: The numbers reveal, thousands of babies victimized by abortion merely because they were mentally or physically disabled — including 500 abortions done on unborn children who have Down syndrome. In total, 2,290 abortions were done on disabled babies with 147 done after 24 weeks of pregnancy.
Newsmax: Almost 50 House members want the House Judiciary Committee to investigate Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan’s involvement in formulating President Barack Obama’s healthcare law while she was his solicitor general.
WNYC: We’re hoping that a higher court will change that,” said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, which represents the church. “Or maybe even the decision-makers themselves will realize how arbitrary it is to single out worship services out of all the myriad uses of things that go on in the public schools.”
Catholic Culture : The public spokesman of the Mexico City archdiocese has announced that he will appeal a July 1 court ruling that he engaged in illegal political activity when he said that Catholics should not vote for candidates who support same-sex marriage.
PennLive.com: The New York effort, widely acknowledged as groundbreaking and shrewd, was made possible by appealing to a select group of wealthy Wall Street Republicans with gay relatives, friends and business partners, or who are gay themselves . . . “There are at least 10 active cases in federal court challenging the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act,” said Austin R. Nimocks, senior legal counsel, at the Alliance Defense Fund, an Arizona-based national legal alliance advocating conservative views.
Christian Post: The Alliance Defense Fund sent a letter to Livingston, New Jersey officials and urged them to stop using ordinance laws to prohibit Racaniello from displaying the Christian cross in his yard . . . The ADF letter states . . .
Phyllis Schlafly at Townhall : The U.S. Supreme Court got it wrong in Brown v. Entertainment Merchant Association. This wasn’t a First Amendment case, it was a parents’ rights case — and only Justice Clarence Thomas understood that.
John Ransom at Townhall: While the rest of us were celebrating the 4th of July with BBQs and parades and recitations of the Declaration of Independence, teachers’ union “delegates” from the far left were giving Obama the thumbs up. Not coincidentally they also voted to levy a $10 tax on union teachers nationally to help support “messaging” in front of his reelection bid.
WSJ.com: School may be out for the summer, but school choice is in, as states across the nation have moved to expand education opportunities for disadvantaged kids. This year is shaping up as the best for reformers in a very long time.
Legal Periodical: Untangling the Knot: Finding a Forum for Same-Sex Divorces in the State of Celebration
Tarasen, Nick, Untangling the Knot: Finding a Forum for Same-Sex Divorces in the State of Celebration (2011). University of Chicago Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1872963
WORLDmag.com: “It is not surprising that Americans answered in the same way they answer [when voting],” said ADF spokesman Greg Scott. So far, no state has voted to define marriage differently than between a man and a woman.
Singh, Narendra Vikram, Patenting of the Stem Cell and Ethical Issue Involved (December 2, 2008). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1857432
Strasser, Mark, Same-Sex Marriage and the Right to Privacy (June, 24 2011). Journal of Law & Family Studies, Vol. 13, pp. 117-150, 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1872031
Legal Periodical: An Exemption for Sincere Believers: The Challenge of Alberta versus Hutterian Brethren of Wilson Colony (2011)
Weinrib, Sara, An Exemption for Sincere Believers: The Challenge of Alberta versus Hutterian Brethren of Wilson Colony (2011). McGill Law Journal, Vol. 56, No. 3, pp. 719-750, 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1874224
Bilchitz, David, Should Religious Associations Be Entitled to Discriminate? (June 10, 2011). South African Journal of Human Rights, Vol. 2, 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1874683
Legal Periodical: Calculations of Conscience: The Costs and Benefits of Religious and Conscientious Freedom
Kislowicz, Howard, Haigh, Richard and Ng, Adrienne, Calculations of Conscience: The Costs and Benefits of Religious and Conscientious Freedom (March 1, 2011). Alberta Law Review, Vol. 48, No. 3, 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1873489
Morrison, Adele M., Same-Sex Loving: Subverting White Supremacy Through Same-Sex Marriage (2007). Michigan Journal of Race & Law, Vol. 13, No. 1, 2007. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1872078