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Matthew J. Franck at National Review: Far be it from me to suggest that the Supreme Court look to foreign sources or opinions to guide its deliberations in the two cases now pending on same-sex marriage. But the shape of things in the current French debate over this issue is instructive indeed.
Catholic Culture: In “Queering Schools, GSAs and the Law: Taking on God”–an excerpt from the book The Gay Agenda: Claiming Space, Identity & Justice–a law professor at the University of Manitoba calls for changes in “state-issued law and policy approaches” to ensure that Canadian schools, including Catholic schools, become “queered.”
Obama admin. continues attempt to force Bible publisher to violate its beliefs | Alliance Defending Freedom
“For the government to say that a Bible publisher isn’t religious is startling. We will continue to argue on appeal that the administration cannot disregard the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom to achieve certain political purposes.”
NPR (includes audio): One-fifth of Americans are religiously unaffiliated — higher than at any time in recent U.S. history — and those younger than 30 especially seem to be drifting from organized religion. A third of young Americans say they don’t belong to any religion. NPR Morning Edition co-host David Greene wanted to understand why, so he gathered a roundtable of young people . . .
ACLU of Massachusetts v. USCCB, Nos. 12-1466, 12-1658 (1st Cir. Jan. 15, 2013) (Lynch, Chief Judge, Torruella, Circuit Judge, and DiClerico, District Judge.) LYNCH, Chief Judge. The American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts (ACLUM), asserting taxpayer standing on behalf of …
LifeNews: As a result, the number of U.S. infant adoptions (about 90,000 in 1971) has fallen from 22,291 in 2002 to 18,078 in 2007, according to the most recent five-year tally from the private National Council for Adoption.
San Francisco Chronicle: Abortion foes, coming off a successful ballot initiative campaign requiring parental notification before teens undergo the procedure, launched into their legislative requests Tuesday with a renewed proposal to criminalize the killing of a fetus.
LifeSiteNews: Twin brothers, 45, who were born deaf, were euthanized in Belgium last month after they learned that they would soon go blind.
Wall Street Journal: If you retire single and childless, that means you’re living off the labor of other people’s children. Why shouldn’t you get a smaller benefit check than those who accepted the personal and financial burdens of raising those workers?
AZ Central: The Arizona Legislature has been told by an appeals court that it cannot pick and choose which parts of a voter-approved school funding initiative it wants to pay.
Judge Halts Illinois Mandate of Contraceptives and Abortifacients Coverage in HHS Lawsuit Thomas More Society Says Triune Health Group’s Religious Liberty Protected WHEATON, Ill., Jan. 15, 2013 / Today, Judge Terence M. Sheen of the DuPage County Circuit Court granted …
ACLU press release: The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Utah have filed a lawsuit against the Davis School District after elementary schools in the district were instructed to remove a children’s book about a family with same-sex parents from library shelves . . . Status: Victory! The Davis School District has agreed to return In Our Mothers’ House to its library shelves.
LifeNews: The Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the last remaining abortion clinic in Mississippi, failed to meet a Friday deadline for compliance with a new law that requires abortionists to maintain local hospital privileges.
LifeNews: It sounds like the best news we could possibly hear: Media reports claim that China is going to phase out its One Child Policy and allow parents to have two children. Within eight years, the government will allow parents to have as many children as they want.
Oregonian: She brought her partner, Aimee Wilson, to stand beside her as she was sworn in as speaker — thereby making national publicity as the first openly lesbian to serve in that position in the nation.
Jackson Hole Daily: For the first time in his career, Jackson Republican Rep. Keith Gingery is backing a gay marriage bill. After eight years in the Legislature, Gingery has signed on as a co-sponsor of two measures sanctioning same-sex unions.
Washington Post: Virginia’s General Assembly appears poised to put an openly gay judge on the bench Tuesday, reversing itself on one of the most contentious issues of last year’s session.
Oregon, California: Insurance companies must pay for transgender person hormone therapy, breast reduction, cancer screening etc. . .
Washington Post: Regulators in Oregon and California have quietly directed some health insurance companies to stop denying coverage for transgender patients because of their gender identity.
TIME: Until late last week one of Europe’s most progressive nations had one of the continent’s most repressive policies on transgender people. Swedish law had required all transgender people to undergo sterilization if they want to legally change their sex.
National Journal: Which statement comes closest to your political views on gay marriage?
“Conservatives Expect Rhode Island To Protect Their Right To Discriminate Against Same-Sex Marriages” | Think Progress
Think Progress: It seems conservatives will not be holding back in their assault on the rights of same-sex couples, as demonstrated by the testimony Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Kellie Fiedorek will offer at today’s meeting: FIEDOREK: Religious freedom belongs to everyone, not just a handful of people. The government cannot limit constitutionally protected religious liberties in a way that’s foreign to our Constitution. This bill fails to ensure that those liberties of every Rhode Island citizen will be respected. The First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom for all Americans is not limited to the four walls of a church.
LifeNews: Enroll America, a newly formed advocacy group run by supporters of Obamacare, announced a new campaign today to sign up people for the government-run health care plan that contains no safeguards preventing taxpayer dollars from paying for abortions or going to abortion companies like Planned Parenthood.
Manila Standard Today: Piero Tozzi of Alliance Defending Freedom complained that the ruling turned the right to life on its head and subordinated it to so many other secondary rights.
One News Now: ADF attorney Kellie Fiedorek is taking a role in testifying today before the Rhode Island House Committee on Judiciary. “Religious freedom belongs to everyone, not just a handful of people,” she offers in a statement provided to OneNewsNow. “The government cannot limit constitutionally protected religious liberties in a way that’s foreign to our Constitution. This bill fails to ensure that those liberties of every Rhode Island citizen will be respected. The First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom for all Americans is not limited to the four walls of a church.”
43 HHS Lawsuits and the Fight for Religious Liberty | Matt Bowman and Emily Hardman on Breakpoint Radio
Breakpoint Radio (links to audio – 25:30 mins): John Stonestreet interviews Matt Bowman and Emily Hardman, two experts on the front line of the fight for religious liberty.
One News Now: “The military unfortunately has been yielding to a radical agenda to the point of even allowing same-sex marriage at the historic West Point Chapel,” Col. Crews laments. “But yet they are unsure, it appears, that allowing prayers at official events can be continued.” David Hacker, senior legal counsel for ADF, cites the Constitution. “The First Amendment allows public officials to acknowledge our nation’s religious heritage,” he notes. “Anti-religious groups with misguided ideas about the First Amendment should not be allowed to destroy a time-honored, perfectly constitutional American custom.”
FRC: Signed by 49 Members of Congress, including the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, the document makes a convincing argument that prayers before government meetings are constitutional and a matter of religious liberty for all Americans. You can read the brief in its entirety here. FRC filed the brief on behalf of the Members to support the Alliance Defending Freedom’s petition to the U.S. Supreme Court in the case Town of Greece v. Galloway . . . FRC’s friends at the Alliance Defending Freedom have compiled a list of all relevant briefs, including FRC’s and that of a group of distinguished theologians.
Adam McLeod at Public Discourse: To its detriment, Howard Ball’s new book on end-of-life law focuses more on the emotions and biases of the law’s defenders than on law’s history and content.
Huffington Post: House Republican leaders have signed on to spend up to $3 million to keep defending the Defense of Marriage Act in court, according to a copy of their newly revised legal contract obtained by The Huffington Post.
Religion Clause Blog: As the new semester begins at American law schools, here is a guide to in-print casebooks and materials for teaching of law school courses on religious liberty or law and religion. Books are listed by date of publication, most recent first . . .
AP: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer said Monday she plans to push for an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program under the federal health care law, a surprising decision that could have an impact on other Republican governors weighing a similar decision.
Heritage Foundation: The U.S. is not going to default on its interest payments, Foster said, and “this assurancerests not on congressional action to raise the debt ceiling, but on the simple fact that the Treasury has far more than enough funds to pay all interest as it comes due.”
ObamaCare a drain on freedom: plumbing supply co.’s suit enters pipeline | Alliance Defending Freedom
AP: For U.S. troops, less combat is not translating to less stress. Members of the military committed suicide at a record pace in 2012 – almost one per day – and some experts think the trend will grow worse this year.
AP: Sri Lanka’s president on Tuesday swore in a trusted aide to replace the chief justice he fired, a move that could lead to a judicial crisis if lawyers and judges who say the move was illegal refuse to cooperate with the new head judge.
Steve Aden at Townhall: But no matter how many times Planned Parenthood repeats their “Big Lie,” there’s a problem they can’t sweep under the rug with soothing rhetoric: taking life is not part of promoting health.
This post may be updated. Catholic Culture: Mixed religious-freedom rulings at European Court of Human Rights The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that British Airways violated the European Convention of Human Rights in telling an employee in 2006 …
Stephan Dinan at Washington Times: Each of them takes an oath to defend the Constitution, but many House lawmakers either don’t understand the founding document or don’t take its precepts seriously, according to an analysis by The Washington Times that studied the constitutional backing that representatives submitted for each of the more than 3,000 bills they introduced in 2011.
AP: Supporters of same-sex marriage rights plan to assemble at the Rhode Island Statehouse to urge lawmakers to make the smallest state the 10th to allow gay and lesbian couples to wed – and the last to do so in New England.
West Point Prayer Battle Sparks Church Vs. State Debate Over U.S. Military ‘religious Coercion | The Blaze
The Blaze: “Since the Revolution, the U.S. Army has offered soldiers the opportunity to hear invocations. West Point has continued this tradition since its founding in 1802,” wrote David Hacker, Alliance Defending Freedom’s senior legal counsel. “Anti-religious groups with misguided ideas about the First Amendment should not be allowed to destroy a time-honored and perfectly constitutional American custom.”