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Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Godelieva De Troyer is dead now. The man who killed her says she wanted it that way.
National Review: In Reed v. Town of Gilbert, the road to content discrimination was paved with good intentions.
AZ Central: The government’s innocent or good intentions do not provide First Amendment cover for laws that play free speech favorites, according to the Supreme Court decision in Reed v. Town of Gilbert.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Since 1993, Jack Phillips has created custom cakes at his bakery, Masterpiece Cakeshop, in Lakewood, Colorado. From kid’s birthday cakes in the shape of tractors and penguins to multi-tiered wedding cakes covered in fondant flowers and bows, Jack uses his creativity and artistic talent to create edible works of art that help celebrate the most special occasions.
National Review: Christianity is in decline. The “Nones” are ascendant. And Millennials are the driving force for the entire demographic disruption. So says the prevailing coverage of the latest Pew Research Center survey released in May.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Today, the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to review a federal appeals court decision that tossed out the North Carolina Women’s Right to Know Act, which required abortionists to show a mother the ultrasound image of her baby before an abortion and to offer her the opportunity to hear the baby’s heartbeat.
Alliance Defending Freedom: For 10 years, officials in “the city of big shoulders” (Carl Sandburg) has been giving the cold shoulder to World Outreach, a Christian ministry that asks only for the freedom – and the space – to serve the most hurting people of the city.
Red State: As the U.S. Senate takes up the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, abortion advocates and their friends in Congress will undoubtedly predict serious consequences for women’s health.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Opponents of traditional marriage have reassured us that redefining marriage to include same-sex couples won’t impact traditional marriage views or those who hold those beliefs. They propose that redefining marriage is simply about love, dignity, and equality.
Townhall: The Texas Legislature has recently passed, and the governor is expected to sign, abudget proposal which will give priority in funding of the Texas Breast and Cervical Cancer Screenings program to health care providers that provide comprehensive health care services. Funding will first go to state, county, and local community health clinics and federally qualified health centers, and then to non-public entities which provide breast and cervical cancer screenings as part of comprehensive primary and preventative health care.
Spiked-Online: Ireland’s recent decision to legalise same-sex marriage has been heralded by some as a turning point in history. In one way, the Irish vote was historic. It was the first time a country ushered in a redefinition of marriage by the process of referendum, as opposed to a parliamentary vote or judicial interpretation.
CNS News: As the nation waits for the U.S. Supreme Court’s highly anticipated marriage decision in Obergefell v. Hodges this month, one thing is clearly true: The proverbial cat has officially been let out of the bag in terms of what some people have in mind if the high court does not allow states to affirm the definitions of marriage they have always had.
Legatus Magazine: The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments inObergefell v. Hodges on April 28. As the arguments progressed, countless court watchers, politicos, lawyers, and others (myself included) were glued to their computer screens, eagerly awaiting live-blogged updates on the proceedings from inside the courtroom.
The Gazette: Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s most recent annual report reveals the abortion giant performed 327,653 abortions during the last fiscal year (2013-2014). During that same period, Planned Parenthood reported that it had received over $528 million in taxpayer funding. Those taxpayers will be shocked to learn what their money is funding, especially in Colorado.
The New York Sun: Within hours of the United States Supreme Court declining on March 30 to review the Bronx Household of Faith case, a lawsuit challenging New York City’s ban on private worship services in empty school buildings, Mayor Bill de Blasio responded with what appears to be a decisive move of reconciliation.
Citizen Times: Opponents of laws like North Carolina’s proposed Religious Freedom Restoration Act, currently being considered by the state Senate, often declare that business owners have no place incorporating their values into their businesses. Instead, they must leave their religious beliefs and their consciences at home.
Daily Caller: North Carolina would do well to pass a religious freedom law similar to laws in numerous other states and the federal government.
The College Fix: Unlike the iconic Las Vegas advertising slogan, “What happens here, stays here,” history is revealing that the hypersensitivity to political correctness, tolerance, and hurt feelings on college campuses is affecting society as a whole. And the news isn’t good.
CNS News: Public discourse is often marked by sweeping statements, loose analogies, and vague generalities. To some extent, this is the byproduct of our sound-bite culture.
Townhall: The ACLU and Planned Parenthood are pursuing a surprising new agenda in Illinois: banning women’s reproductive choices.
The Christian Post: According to Nick’s complaint filed with the Los Angeles County court, it’s not a matter of Sofia or Nick arguing over who gets the kids during future holidays, it’s whether these two children should be even given a chance to live at all.
The Washington Post: My relationship with God trumps my connection to anyone on Earth. And now I’m getting sued.
CNS News: Imagine a news story that announces that the government has enacted non-discrimination legislation that restricts freedom of the press. The law gives the government approval authority over the content of every news piece to ensure that it presents a view that the government thinks is “fair.”
The evolution of the contraceptive mandate and the ‘accommodations’ that failed to respect protected conscience rights
Constituting America: At issue in these cases were HHS regulations drafted under the Affordable Care Act of 2010, popularly known as “Obamacare.” In that act, Congress generally requires employers with 50 or more full-time employees to offer group health insurance coverage that provides a minimum level of essential coverage. Heavy fines may be levied on an employer that fails to comply with the law’s coverage requirements, including “preventive care and screenings” for women to be provided at no cost to employees.
The Federalist: The ideology that denies the meaningfulness of biological ties for human identity is called same-sex marriage.
Red State: Last week in Sacramento, California, legislators and abortion advocates finally explained how they square the state’s new abortion insurance mandate with a federal law prohibiting it. They believe they can count on the Obama administration not to enforce the law.
CNS News: The U.S. Supreme Court will soon decide whether the people of our republic will be permitted to continue to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.
NOLA: For well over a decade, many have raised concerns that redefining marriage would impact the ability of churches, pastors, religious ministries and individual people of faith to maintain their religious freedom. And during that same time, activists have repeatedly given their assurance that religious entities and individuals will remain free to conduct their business in accordance with their deeply held religious beliefs.
Catholic News Agency: As our brief turn came we shared the work of our global legal ministry, Alliance Defending Freedom, Pope Francis presented an almost laser-like focus, asked a thoughtful question, giving generously of his very limited time to really hear and understand what we were saying, and offering his encouragement and blessing.
Red State: Today, Congress will take up House Joint Resolution 43 to disapprove of the D.C. Reproductive Health Nondiscrimination Amendment Act. Under the Constitution, the Congress has authority to govern the District. And under the Home Rule Act, the federal government retains the authority to effectively veto any act of the DC Council. While Congress has historically shown deference to the District, rarely disapproving its laws, the Reproductive Health Nondiscrimination Amendment Act betrays Congress’s patience and challenges Congress’s authority over the District. Congress should intervene and disapprove of this egregiously illegal law.
The Washington Examiner: As we contemplate these historic arguments and attempt to navigate the frenzy surrounding them, let’s do our best to listen carefully to all of the voices that have spoken to the nine justices.
USA Today: My mother has been in a committed relationship with another woman for nearly 30 years. And I am the co-author of a Supreme Court amicus brief in favor of allowing states to affirm marriage as the union of one man and one woman in their laws.
Aciprensa (Translated by Google): Alan Sears is a former US federal prosecutor who has held various positions in the departments of Justice and Home Affairs under President Ronald Reagan. He is currently the President and CEO of Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal nonprofit organization, construction of alliances, defending the right of people to freely live out their faith.
Journal Star: Nebraskans should know that the right to “exercise” their religion is vulnerable in this state. And our legislators should be discouraged from passing laws in the name of nondiscrimination that, simultaneously, work a discrimination against an emerging religious minority. We must establish a more appropriate balance.
The Hill: The issue pertinent here is not whether the death penalty for convicted murderers is moral or not. The issue is whether the state should be able to force people to help facilitate an execution against their will. And it raises the greater question of when the government, in general, can compel people to act against their beliefs.
Rhino Times: A poem, a Christmas tree and a T-shirt: three innocuous, seemingly unrelated items that nonetheless share a common bond. All three were censored by North Carolina educators who made bad decisions that could have been prevented if the state had a religious freedom law like the one North Carolina legislators are currently considering.
The News & Observer: As consideration of North Carolina’s religious freedom bill ramps up, North Carolinians should call on the many CEOs who have come out against such laws around the country to put their money where their mouths are.
Townhall: It seems the abortion industry never stops putting its positive spin on the bad news it continues to receive. Bad news for the abortion industry in recent years has been the fact that a growing number of Americans oppose abortion altogether or, if they support abortion, they want to see stricter limits on it.
Las Vegas Review Journal: The Nevada Student Physical Privacy Act maintains the longstanding practice of ensuring single-sex use of school restrooms and other intimate settings while providing accommodations for students struggling with sexual identity. What should be an uncontroversial bill has garnered significant national attention and has been the source of much misinformation.
Constituting America: Freedom of conscience is so important it is enshrined in the very first amendment to the United States Constitution. And our Founding Fathers thought freedom from government coercion so vital that they built it into the very structure of our government. Power is split between three coequal branches – legislative, executive, and judicial – to keep dictatorial officials like Herr Zeller in check.
Elko Daily Free Press: This is what AB 375 accomplishes. It accommodates students struggling with gender confusion while preserving the historic practice of having separate facilities based upon a person’s biological sex.
Crisis Magazine: In a recent Crisis magazine column, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse—a valued leader in the pro-marriage and family movement—contends that “religious liberty arguments aren’t working” in the effort to retain marriage as the union of one man and one woman. In fact, she says the religious liberty argument in the marriage arena “weakens our case.” Instead, Dr. Morse argues, we should “argue against the Sexual Revolution because it has hurt people.”
The Federalist: Here are five positions of the party and many of its leaders (even if not necessarily all those who continue to vote for Democrats) that are arguably even more extreme.
Times Record: Twenty-two years ago, President Bill Clinton signed into law the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. By signing Arkansas’ version of that law, Gov. Asa Hutchinson has brought Arkansas in line with the federal government and 20 other states that already ensure that every American is guaranteed the freedom to live and work consistent with their faith. This is a good day for Arkansas.
The Gospel Coalition: America is in the midst of a seismic cultural shift in matters of faith, family, and freedom.
Red State: A man tells you he wants you to be part of his religious service. You will participate in prayers, listen to sermons, and either join in or stand reverently as hymns are sung and religious rites are performed. But the service worships a different god from your own. In fact, the service blasphemes your God. The man offers to pay you, but you nevertheless respectfully decline to be involved in or participate in this religious service. So he goes to the authorities and demands that the government punish you for your resistance. If this religious service is a same-sex wedding don’t go to the ACLU looking for help.
The Federalist: Indiana’s ‘fix’ to its religious-freedom law will actively force private business owners to violate their consciences.
The Federalist: Not a single person who identifies as homosexual has been harmed by the federal or dozens of state religious freedom acts.
The Washington Examiner: Amid the current controversy over Indiana’s religious freedom law, it is important to understand just how important religious freedom has been in America’s legal history. By protecting religious beliefs and the free exercise of religion by its citizens, America has become a diverse society where people function successfully among others with whom we may not agree.
CNS News: Unfortunately, amidst many of today’s debates about the efficacy of religious freedom, such as the debate over Indiana’s religious freedom law, a pernicious underlying assumption exists that religious freedom is only for the religious. Such a belief is as dangerous as it is false. Religious freedom benefits all of us, though many unfortunately do not recognize it.
The Christian Post: To affirm these sacred rights, a national law virtually identical to Indiana’s new law was passed by a near unanimous Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993. Thirty-three states have adopted similar religious liberty protections. Indiana’s law makes it the thirty-fourth state to do so.
Catholic Conference of Kentucky: This past week Indiana adopted a state-level version of the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). This law imposes a higher standard of review when the state or a local government passes laws that interfere with the free exercise of religion. However, the law has unfairly been characterized as legislation that would authorize, or even encourage, unjust discrimination against homosexuals.
Townhall: There’s a secret underneath Boycott Indiana’s false rhetoric about that state’s new religious freedom law: some of those involved also want to force you to help purchase and perform abortions.
Townhall: On March 18, Lane allegedly lured Michelle Wilkins, seven months pregnant with a baby girl, to her home by posting an ad on Craigslist for baby clothes. It is believed that Lane then attacked Wilkins, forcibly cutting into her and removing the child from her womb. Wilkins, covered head-to-toe in blood, was left in Lane’s basement. Lane then allegedly presented herself and the baby girl at the hospital, claiming she had a miscarriage. The baby girl died shortly thereafter.
A First Amendment SCOTUS case could bring much-needed clarification as to what constitutes ‘Government Speech’
National Review: Monday morning’s Supreme Court docket features arguments in a First Amendment fight between the Sons of Confederate Veterans, who wish to display the Confederate battle flag on their specialty license plate, and the state of Texas, which excluded the Sons from its specialty-plate program because it thought their symbol violated its policy against “offensive” messages on specialty plates.
Pregnancy Help News: The federal government appears to care more about advancing its abortion agenda than it cares for the lives of sexually abused children.
The Wall Street Journal (access via Google): In Illinois, our law firm recently filed a lawsuit on behalf of three Bible colleges, with the backing of the nonprofit Alliance Defending Freedom, against the Illinois Board of Higher Education. The IBHE claims that the Bible colleges do not meet the state’s curriculum requirements, and therefore cannot issue degrees.
The Gospel Coalition: New York City churches are awaiting word from the U.S. Supreme Court about whether they can continue meeting for worship services in the city’s public school buildings outside of class time
National Review: On Monday, the Supreme Court reversed a 7th Circuit case concerning the HHS abortion-pill mandate. In so doing, it may also have reversed the narrative of the Obama administration’s defenders.
Red State: The D.C. Council’s nine-month quest to enact two anti-conscience laws appears to be coming to a close. After hearing concerns about violations of the First Amendment and federal law from outgoing Mayor Vincent Gray, the D.C. Attorney General’s office, members of Congress, and dozens of pro-life and religious organizations and schools in the District, the council has apparently rejected those concerns, effectively challenging Congress to intervene.
Townhall: Since August, California has been forcing churches and every other employer in the state to provide elective abortion coverage to their employees.
Red State: With abortion at stake, Arizona acknowledges that the legislature’s words matter.
Fox News: In 1962, in the middle of the Cold War between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, the State of New York required Harry Keyishian and four other employees of the University of Buffalo to certify they were not communists to keep their jobs. Fast forward to 2015. Apparently, the city of Atlanta thinks former Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran should be treated the same way because of his Christian beliefs.
CNS News: Religious freedom, and the right of every individual to follow the dictates of his or her conscience, is a principle so hallowed in the American soul that our nation’s courtrooms, classrooms, and most corners of the public square have honored and sustained it for more than 200 years.
Townhall: One of the best ways to torch your comment feed on social media is to post something about vaccines. But I believe common ground can exist on this issue—if people care more about solutions than about demonizing their opponents.
Zenit: Recently, the European Court of Human Rights issued a judgment in Paradiso and Campanelli v. Italy, which reveals a lot about the shady world of surrogacy. The court ruled that Italy was able to deny registering a child to an Italian couple because the child was born by a surrogate mother in Russia and had no biological genetic link to the couple.
Religion News Service: Cake artists, florists, photographers, and many others who operate businesses that create expressive products have First Amendment rights.
How the contraception mandate may spread measles: Politicizing preventative care increases public distrust
Town Hall: One of the best ways to cause distrust in public health experts is for the government to politicize science. This can be seen in contentious areas like climate change, embryo research, and the beginning of human life. Experts there have infused ideology into data and have even changed or redefined words to fit their agendas. Global warming has become “climate change,” embryos “pre-embryos,” and “conception” redefined to mean implantation.
Public Discourse: When conscience flirts with the idea of accommodating an unjust law, it must politely, yet firmly, reject the sirens of seduction.
The Federalist: Religious freedom usually leaves ample room for the government to achieve its goals while respecting faith. The Supreme Court recognized this again Tuesday, showing it was right when it did the same thing last summer in Hobby Lobby/Conestoga.