Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
MI: “Christian call to prayer riles Muslims: Mosques get warned to up security ahead of Ford Field event”
The Detroit News: The local head of a national Muslim civil rights group says a Christian prayer summit to be held at Ford Field next week promotes anti-Muslim sentiment and is warning local mosques to step up their security
Christian Post: Ron Baker, pastor at Russell Baptist Church in Green Cove Springs, said that he would continue to pray no matter what happens. The flagpole, which is the site where the prayers have been taken place, is at the center of an ideological standoff between the school board and those who wish to pray.
Religion Clause: The complaint (full text) in Corporation of the Presiding Bishop of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints v. City of Mission, (SD TX, filed 10/31/2011), alleges that the city arbitrarily imposed a super-majority City Council voting requirement for approval of the permit . . .
LifeNews.com: Governor John Kasich of Ohio has signed into law a bill meant to strengthen the parental consent law in place that prohibits teens from getting an abortion without their parents’ consent is moving along in the legislative process.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi led 130 fellow Democrats in filing a friend-of-the-court brief Thursday challenging the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, arguing that Republicans defending the law, which denies all federal benefits to married same-sex couples, do not represent the full House.
LifeNews.com: The chair of the national Democratic Party has issued a statement on a vote taking place next week in Mississippi on an amendment saying human life begins at conception or fertilization. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Florida Democratic congresswoman chosen by President Barack Obama to head the party, called making such a statement “an extreme and radical step,” according to a new CNS News report.
LifeNews.com: Yesterday,the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has delivered its final judgment in the case of S. H. and others v. Austria (application no. 57813/00), reversing a prior judgment, and deciding that the Austrian ban on using sperm and ova donations for in vitro fertilisation (heterologous IVF) respects the European Convention on Human Rights, and in particular is not in breach of the right to respect for private and family life (Article 8 of the Convention).
Kelly Boggs at Baptist Press: Mississippi has become ground zero in the debate over the legal status of the preborn. Citizens in the Magnolia State will go to the polls Tuesday to vote on Measure 26, a ballot initiative that if passed will amend the state constitution and ascribe the status of person to “every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent thereof.”
Baptist Press: Southern Baptist ethics leader Richard Land has urged Mississippi voters to support an amendment to their state constitution that will protect human life from the moment of conception.
Daily Mail: Plans to deny fathers and grandparents the legal right to see children after a family break-up will fuel an ‘epidemic of fatherlessness’ in Britain, it was claimed yesterday.
The Christian Institute: The Scottish National Party (SNP) yesterday forced forward its controversial sectarianism legislation in the face of a united opposition from the other main parties.
Courthouse News Service: A class action alleging that the U.S. government gave a fraction of the severance pay due to an Air Force staff sergeant honorably discharged under the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy will play out in the Court of Federal Claims.
Fox News: Republican lawmakers and conservative activists are expressing outrage after the Obama administration announced its objection to adding President Franklin Roosevelt’s D-Day prayer to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
MSNBC.com: A top U.S. general in Afghanistan was relieved of duty Friday for “inappropriate public comments” after calling the Afghan government “isolated from reality” and President Hamid Karzai “erratic.”
Catholic Culture: Researchers at the Arizona State University have linked the hormone in Depo Provera to memory loss. The birth-control shot can act as an abortifacient as well as a contraceptive.
Federation for Children: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker today signed legislation that reaffirms Wisconsin’s commitment to providing quality educational options to low-income students by enacting legislation that clarifies school choice language included in the state’s 2011-13 budget and increases accountability in the Milwaukee and Racine Parental Choice Programs.
News from The Associated Press: The satirical French newspaper whose offices were firebombed this week fought back Friday against efforts to interrupt its operations, starting a blog and publishing more copies of a controversial edition.
Andrew Haines at Public Discourse: Bryan Caplan’s latest book argues that we don’t need to over-invest time and money on our kids, because our lasting influence on their characters is negligible, while their contribution to our material well-being is significant.
KTUL.com: The gay Catholics group DignityUSA says the column was outrageous and inflicted “tremendous damage on the souls” of gay people.
America Magazine: A policy adviser to the U.S. bishops has resigned following a controversy over an opinion piece he wrote suggesting that same-sex attraction could be the work of the devil. | Text of the Avila article in question here.
Federal prosecutors have worked out a deal with an American missionary in Nicaragua that may help them find a woman who fled the country in a custody dispute with her former lesbian partner, court documents show.
Odessa American Online: It is the first time the City of Odessa has responded to such a request from Rock the Desert, Zentner said. Some find giving city money to a religious organization problematic.
KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings: ACLU Nebraska (American Civil Liberties Union of Nebraska) Thursday demanded that school officials at Lakeview High School in Columbus stop holding a high school graduation ceremony that subjects students to “unconstitutional religious messages,” a press release from ACLU says.
San Francisco Chronicle: A California lawmaker from the Central Valley has revealed that she is gay, making her one of eight openly gay members of the Legislature. Assemblywoman Cathleen Galgiani . . .
The Christian Century: (RNS) Is legalized abortion akin to the Nazi Holocaust? The analogy is a standard talking point among abortion opponents, and a new half-hour video by a prominent Christian apologist has gone viral by making the comparison more explicit and graphic than any anti-abortion sound bite on the evening news.
The Michigan Senate passed an anti-bullying bill Wednesday over strong objections from Democrats and even the father of the bullying victim after whom the bill is named. “Matt’s Safe School Law” passed 26-11 with all Democrats voting against it.
The ACLU blog on the topic is here. Congressional testimony given by ACLJ Attorney Colby May is cited if the ACLU post.
WORLDmag.com : ADF legal counsel Matt Bowman said that the hospital’s directive was “flatly illegal.” The Christian Post also reports that the ADF is handling a similar case involving Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. This seems like a straightforward case of a hospital breaking the law, and perhaps there will be a happy ending. I’m grateful the ADF is on the case, and for the temporary restraining order
OneNewsNow.com (includes photo of Jonathan): Jonathan Scruggs is litigation staff counsel for ADF. “Christians shouldn’t be punished for expressing their beliefs, so the city’s done the right thing here in eliminating a law that allowed that to happen,” says the attorney.
Judge halts plans to force nurses to do abortions: Hearing on case brought by 12 caregivers scheduled for Nov. 18 | WND
WorldNetDaily: “These 12 nurses,” said ADF legal counsel Matt Bowman, “have encountered threats to their jobs at this hospital ever since a policy change required them to participate in the abortion cases regardless of their religious and moral objections. The court’s order prevents that until the Nov. 18 hearing, but it is disturbing that the hospital may fight to continue violating laws that clearly protect conscience rights.”
NRL News Today: The ADF filed suit in U.S. District Court in New Jersey, on behalf of the nurses who “possess strongly held religious and moral beliefs that she may not participate in the process of an abortion that causes the death of a preborn child,” according to ADF Legal Counsel Matt Bowman. “No less than 12 nurses have encountered threats to their jobs at this hospital ever since a policy change required them to participate in the abortions regardless of their religious objections,” he said. “That is flatly illegal.”
LifeNews.com: ADF Legal Counsel Matt Bowman told LifeNews . . . “Pro-life nurses shouldn’t be forced to assist or train in services related to abortions. Federal and state law both prohibit this,” he said. “These 12 nurses have encountered threats to their jobs at this hospital ever since a policy change required them to participate in the abortion cases regardless of their religious and moral objections. The court’s order prevents that until the Nov. 18 hearing, but it is disturbing that the hospital may fight to continue violating laws that clearly protect conscience rights.”
The New American: ADF Senior Counsel Byron Babione expressed his disappointment in the High Court’s refusal. “One atheist group’s agenda shouldn’t diminish the sacrifice made by highway patrol officers and their families,” he said. “Thirteen heroic men fell, leaving their survivors to mourn and memorialize their loved ones, and now those widows, children, parents, colleagues, and many more must suffer through losing the very memorials that honored those heroes. Justice is not well served when unhappy atheists can use the law to mow down memorial crosses and renew the suffering for the survivors.” [more]
Examiner.com (includes photo of ADF Attorney Jon Scruggs): The Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) reports today that in Atlantic City you no longer have to fear the enforcement of an unconstitutional city ordinance that police had used to stop a man from engaging in religious speech on the city’s boardwalk.
Fox News: ADF officials contacted city officials in September after a police officer ordered Pat Donlevy to stop talking to people on the boardwalk about his religious beliefs.
Todd Starnes at FOX News & Commentary: The Air Force Academy apologized Thursday night after it was accused of religious intolerance for promoting Operation Christmas Child – a program designed to send holiday gifts to impoverished children around the world.
Businessweek: For insurance companies nervously watching the legal fight over the constitutionality of the President’s health-care law, it would be the unthinkable: The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down the law’s so-called individual mandate, which requires millions of young, healthy people to buy coverage—but leaves intact rules compelling insurers to cover sick people, who are likely to cost far more in benefits than they pay in premiums. Congress is then left to fix the problem.
SCOTUSblog: The following post is a summary taken from Judicial Ghostwriting: Authorship on the Supreme Court, an article written by University of Toronto Professors Jeffrey Rosenthal and Albert Yoon published in the Cornell Law Review.
Federation for Children: The Indiana Department of Education (DOE) announced that the state’s new voucher program approved nearly 4,000 students for participation in 2011-12, making the Choice Scholarship Program the biggest first-year voucher program ever.
CNBC: While Greece’s teetering government continued to debate whether to stay in the euro on Thursday, European leaders talked for the first time of a possible Greek exit to preserve the single currency.
A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order Thursday that prohibits a New Jersey hospital from forcing any of 12 nurses that sued the facility to participate in training or services related to abortions. The order, which the hospital agreed to, is in effect until the court decides whether to issue any additional order at a Nov. 18 hearing.