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Sen. Chuck Grassley’s remarkable opening statement in today’s Senate hearing on a bill to repeal DOMA called attention to a very serious and growing intolerance directed at Americans who believe marriage is the union of husband and wife . . .
Rev. Stephen Wengam at GBC News: We must not condemn homosexuals but condemn the act and sin of homosexuality. We must be kind to them and help them to overcome this degrading tendency. We must assure them they can overcome it. There is no human moral failure that cannot be overcome. There are many in our societies, who were once rapists, armed robbers and homosexuals who upon acknowledging those tendencies as sin and evil sought help and they are now free from its addiction. We use this opportunity to call on civil society, organs of governments, NGOs, political and religious bodies to rise up against any call or attempt to legitimise homosexuality.
Jacksonville.com: The Florida Education Association, and religious leaders filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging a proposed constitutional amendment that would remove language from the Florida constitution banning public dollars for religious groups. | Links to the complaint in Shapiro v. Browning, 2011 CA 1892 (Fla. 2nd Cir. for Leon Co.)
CSMonitor.com: Births have surpassed immigration as the main driver of the dynamic growth in the US Hispanic population. This new trend is especially evident among the largest of all Hispanic groups-Mexican-Americans, according to a new analysis of US Census Bureau data by the Pew Hispanic Center. Click here for the summary of, and link to, the report.
Catholic Bishop Finn at The Catholic Key Blog: : At one time we might have insisted that China’s desires to be accepted and welcomed as a partner with the West must be met by an insistence that it respects this fundamental human right of religious expression and organization. Now we must be careful that our need to come, hat in hand, to China in the economic sphere doesn’t require us to be silent about such significant restraints on human dignity.
USCCB Spokesman Sr. Mary Ann Walsh at The Washington Post: It was more than 400 years ago when More said the government had gone beyond what his conscience could bear. The right to follow one’s conscience trumps other obligations, even rights claimed by the government. The message still stands today.
Politico: President Barack Obama intends on Wednesday to nominate the fourth openly gay judicial candidate of his administration to U.S. district court, according to a White House official.
Catholic Culture: The director of the Holy See Press Office has issued a statement in response to the recently published report on abuse in the Diocese of Cloyne.
Daniel Blomberg at the Speak Up Movement Church Blog: The President is using one time-honored preserver of our country—the military—to attack another—marriage. Defenders of marriage, though, should not be surprised. Marriage is so foundational an institution that it is related to most facets of life. Thus, for instance, defending marriage also means defending religious liberty. Now, due to the creativity of marriage’s attackers, it means defending the military itself.
Daniel Blomberg at the Speak Up Movement Church Blog: But the actual situation now is much worse than a regrettable tale of political shenanigans and hypocrisy. The military’s attempt to brace service members for repeal—via painfully inadequate PowerPoint training slides—still relies on DOMA’s existence to answer many controversial problems. Thus, our troops are having a radical change imposed on them during a time of war by a Commander-in-Chief who is training them to rely on a law that his administration is actively trying to subvert. This is wrong. Misleading Congress is one thing. Misleading the men and women in harm’s way who must follow his leadership is a wholly indefensible other thing and should not be tolerated. Congress should demand that the President explain his duplicity to it and stop his mistreatment of our troops.
Boston.com: The Texas State Board of Education meets this week for the first time under its conservative new chairwoman appointed by Gov. Rick Perry.
Reuters: The Federal Reserve is actively preparing for the possibility that the United States could default as a deadline for raising the government’s $14.3 trillion borrowing limit looms, a top Fed policymaker said on Wednesday.
NPR (includes audio): As thousands of gay and lesbian couples are planning weddings in New York — and celebrating their hard-fought right to marry — others around the nation are fighting for the right to divorce.
Jeff Schapiro at the Christian Post: Can Christians ever escape being labeled as “hateful” people while standing firmly on the pro-family side of the gay marriage issue?
“But humanity remains unchanged – a collection of men and women. And because of the fundamental truth that children are the product of sexual relationships between men and women, and that men and women each bring something important and unique to the table of parenting, this government maintains a compelling interest in protecting and preserving the institution of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.”
LifeSiteNews.com: Following a successful petition drive by pro-life groups, the Swiss government will be forced to hold a national referendum on the public funding of abortion, after deciding in April to continue paying for the deadly procedures.
LifeSiteNews.com: The archbishop of Baltimore is warning Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley that he will have a vigorous fight on his hands if he tries to legalize same-sex “marriage.” The governor had announced Friday that he is making gay “marriage” a legislative priority, following the success of gay activists in New York.
LifeSiteNews.com: After the Institute of Medicine (IOM) this week publicly backed government-mandated birth control coverage, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is standing in the breach as a lone major voice against what would prove a massive victory for abortion giant Planned Parenthood.
LifeNews.com: In Ohio, a woman can legally have an abortion up to and through her ninth month of pregnancy. With the passage of H.B. 78 and the ultimate signature by Kasich, babies who can live outside of their mother’s womb will no longer be subject to death via an abortion.
LifeNews.com: Former Kansas prosecutor Phill Kline is back for the second part of hearings on politically-motivated charges that he acted improperly during his investigations of abortion clinics.
LifeNews.com: It’s official in Texas, as Governor Rick Perry, a pro-life Republican, on Monday ceremonially signed SB 7, a health care measure containing language that would revoke the taxpayer funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business.
Religion Clause: In Calvary Christian Center. v. City of Fredericksburg, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 77489 (ED VA, July 18, 2011), a Virginia federal district court refused to grant a preliminary injunction to a church that was denied a special use permit that it sought in order to lease space in the church to a for-profit school for disabled children.
Greenfield Reporter (AP): “It’s a very well-founded concern,” said Holly Carmichael of the Alliance Defense Fund, an Arizona-based firm that presses faith-based cases in court nationwide. “It conflicts with fundamental American religious freedoms.”
ACLU: To read the ACLU’s testimony, go to: www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/aclu-statement-judiciary-committee-hearing-s-598-respect-marriage-act-assessing-impact
GantDaily.com: Also on the witness list were Tom Minnery of Focus on the Family and Austin Nimocks, senior legal counsel of the Alliance Defense Fund and one of the lawyers for proponents of Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage.
The Advocate: McGuire and his group refer to a memo from the conservative Christian organization the Alliance Defense Fund, which is offering free legal advice to clerks who object to the marriage equality law. According to the memo, New York law requires employers to accommodate “sincerely held religious beliefs,” and a clerk’s duty to issue marriage licenses can be delegated to a deputy or other municipal employee.
CBN.com: New York law “explicitly allows a municipality to delegate a clerk’s duties concerning marriage licenses to a deputy clerk or any other municipal employee. A city or town should have no reason to deny a clerk’s request for an accommodation,” ADF noted in a memo. “Indeed, it is disturbing that public officials have so blithely dismissed New Yorkers’ sincerely held beliefs even though millions of New Yorkers believe that marriage is only between a man and a woman,” the ADF said.
Christian Post: “This move by the president and certain members of congress is disappointing in that it is attacking that fundamental building block for our society,” Blomberg told The Christian Post. “I see this as an attack on what 84 percent of Congress voted for in 1996 when they passed DOMA, and what 31 out of 31 states voted for when Americans had a chance to vote on this issue.” “Whether or not this is an endorsement [of gay marriage], which this seems to be very close to being, the fact is that the president is attacking what diverse cultures and faiths have recognized throughout history as the universal ideal, as the best way to promote healthy, natural families,” Blomberg said.
OneNewsNow.com: ADF attorney Dale Schowengerdt explains: “The use of violence, threats, and other criminal behavior to advance a political agenda should never be acceptable in America,” he states. “ADF filed suit on behalf of Mount Hope to stop Bash Back! from invading churches, disrupting worship, and terrifying adults and children who attend religious services. “The court’s orders accomplished that and send a message to any other groups contemplating such tactics that they will not succeed.”
Baptist Press: “It is disturbing that public officials have so blithely dismissed New Yorkers’ sincerely held beliefs even though millions of New Yorkers believe that marriage is only between a man and a woman,” said a legal memo ADF wrote for clerks throughout the state. “But New York law does protect an employee’s sincerely held religious beliefs.”
The Washington Post: Daniel Blomberg, an attorney for the conservative Alliance Defense Fund, denounced the administration’s decision. “Our perspective is that it’s not only incorrect, but deeply disappointing, to have a politician claim support for marriage between one man and one woman on the campaign trail, then actively undermine that once in office,” said Blomberg, whose organization will testify in support of DOMA during Wednesday’s Senate hearing. “We are confident Congress will make the right decision here.”
AP: The Vatican encouraged Catholic bishops not to tell police about suspected pedophile priests and flouted Irish law, Ireland’s lawmakers declared Wednesday in an unprecedented denunciation of the Holy See’s influence in this predominantly Catholic country.
Rebecca Hagelin at Townhall: Our present culture is steeped in moral relativism and a devaluation of the sexual intimacy that was designed to be reserved for marriage, thanks to a media culture that has been controlled largely by five large conglomerates. They have designed and scripted virtually everything we have seen, listened to on the radio, watched on television and in the movies, and read over the last several decades. Their influence is so complete that one can scarcely go through a day without having sex of every kind brought into our homes through seemingly innocent comedy shows, commercials, textbooks, music and even children’s fiction.
Rachel Alexander at Townhall: Child custody and support laws have become more onerous over the last 50 years due to fewer parents staying together and women becoming equally as capable as men at earning a living outside the home. Instead of reflecting these changes, the laws have lagged behind, continuing to favor mothers over fathers.
Guided by the “minimum government, maximum freedom” ethos, libertarians should realize where their support for same-sex marriage will lead. The society gay-rights activists envision would destroy the very values libertarians claim to extol.
Brian Raum at Human Events: Marriage supporters have warned for years that fabricating same-sex “marriage” will only serve to usher in more and more assaults on the foundational building block of society. And now, in a perfect yet appalling example of what’s been foretold, polygamist Kody Brown is chasing the success of the homosexual agenda in New York State by filing a lawsuit to strike down the laws against polygamy in an effort to save himself and his four “wives” from prosecution.
Research shows the positive economic effect of two-biological-parent families on our society. Single parenthood and other alternative family structures not only hurt our economy, they hurt our children, those who care for them, and those for whom our children will care later in life.