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Christian Post: Bart Barper, who pastors First Baptist Church in Farmersville, Texas, spoke about religious freedom and sexuality at last month’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission’s annual leadership summit that was held in Nashville, Tennesse.
KOAM: “U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) and U.S. Representative Randy Forbes (Va.) led an effort today to fight for Americans’ First Amendment rights by filing an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court regarding Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius.”
B.C. Catholic: The Alliance Defending Freedom – which is handling several religious freedom lawsuits challenging the regulation – explained that the “new exemption is simpler than before but continues to cover only a sliver of religious organizations.”
Brian Walsh at National Review: Today, a bipartisan group of over 100 legislators in nine states is announcing the nation’s first state legislative caucuses focused solely on religious freedom. These working groups of legislative leaders are being established in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, and Tennessee. This is the first installment in a national plan to form state religious-freedom caucuses in all 50 states by the end of 2013.
LJWorld: Claiming religious freedom is under assault, 120 legislators in nine states, including Kansas, announced on Tuesday the formation of caucuses that they said would be dedicated to protecting religion from government intrusion.
NC Register: The University of Dallas, for example, provides links on its politics department’s Web pages to 58 national or international lobby groups and think tanks offering internships, such as the American Conservative Union and the Alliance Defense Fund, and some targeting specific issues such as National Right to Life. As well, there are links to Republican members of Congress. Democratic politicians are named, but not linked.
EPPC: The Ethics and Public Policy Center takes pleasure in announcing the inaugural event of its American Religious Freedom Program. President Washington’s vision for religious freedom and church-state relations established enduring precedents to guide American political life and civil society. His Thanksgiving Day Proclamation, Letter to the Newport Synagogue, Farewell Address, and similar acts and statements set the stage for America’s history of protecting robust religious rights and freedoms for persons of all faiths.
LifeNews.com: Edward Whelan, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center and a National Review writer, wrote an essay for Public Discourse as part of its 2012 Election Symposium. The article has Whelan saying the GOP nominee should “welcome the battle over the Supreme Court, determine to fight hard for high-quality justices, frame the argument for why abortion policy should be restored to the democratic processes and commit to select senior legal leaders who fully embrace their goals and priorities.”
San Francisco Bay Times: Austin Nimocks of the Alliance Defense Fund; Tom Minnery of Focus on the Family; and Ed Whelan from the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Rep. Steve King, (R-Iowa) cited a 1947 Supreme Court case that declared, “Marriage and procreation are fundamental to the very existence and survival of the race.” King said sanctioning same-sex marriage could lead to marriages between “fathers and daughters … mothers and sons” and “poly-amorous relationships.”
EPPC: EPPC seeks outstanding candidates for new position of Executive Director of forthcoming EPPC program on domestic religious freedom. Executive Director will be responsible for developing all aspects of program, including working with Congress and state legislators to protect religious freedom, building an online repository of information on ongoing threats to religious freedom in the United States, and educating policymakers and the public. Candidates should have excellent communication, organizational, and leadership skills and at least 10 years of experience. Some work history with Congress is desirable. Salary competitive and commensurate with experience. Full benefits. Send cover letter, resume, and any other supporting material to email@example.com.
Federalist Society: “Speakers: Jonathan Adler, Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University; Mark Strasser, Professor of Law, Capital University Law School; Edward Whelan, President of the Ethics and Public Policy Center . . . Does the Fourteenth Amendment require states to recognize same-sex marriages? A recent California federal district court case said that it does. Now the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is taking up the question, and the U.S. Supreme Court might do so in the near future, too. Our panel of experts will consider what the Constitution requires with respect to this controversial issue.”
Pew Forum: “Christopher Hitchens: ‘There used to be a word which could be used unironically, and it was used, really, until not much more than a century, a century-and-a-half ago. People could say, and mean what they said when they said the word, Christendom. There was a Christian world. It had been partly evolved, partly carved out by the sword, partly defended by the sword, at some points giving way, at other times expanding. But it was a meaningful name for a community of belief and value that endured for many, many centuries — and has many splendors to its name. And it’s all gone . . . It destroyed itself, Christendom, and it destroyed itself by the tremendous criminal act of urging its members to kill each other in the outbreak of the great war — as it was then known, but it wasn’t known that it would lead to a huge and even worse part two — in 1914, where the king-emperor of the British empire, who was also the head of the Church of England, and the Russian czar, who was also the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, and you follow the road . . .’”
A follow-up comment from Peter Hitchens is here.
Edward Whelan has posted the Ethics and Public Policy Center amicus brief in Prop. 8 appeal online here.
Washington Post: “As polls show that growing numbers of Americans back greater rights for gay men and lesbians, some well-known Republican figures, such as former party chairman Ken Mehlman,who recently came out, are calling for the party to shift its stances on such issues. But Christian conservatives warn that the GOP could lose its base if it endorses same-sex marriage or takes other pro-gay-rights stands.”
California Catholic Daily: “‘What’s at stake in this case is bigger than California and bigger even than marriage,’ said ADF senior counsel [Brian Raum]. ‘These briefs demonstrate the wide-ranging concerns about marriage, voter rights, judicial activism, religious liberty, and other issues and how they will be affected nationwide if this lawsuit is allowed to prevail. A diverse number of Americans understand that this lawsuit seeks to impose — through a San Francisco court — an agenda that America has repeatedly rejected.’”
Worthy News: “‘It makes no sense to impose a radical change in marriage on the people of California before all appeals on their behalf are heard,’ according to a statement released by the Alliance Defense Fund. ‘If the trial’s court’s decision is eventually reversed, refusing to the stay the decision will senselessly create legal uncertainty surrounding any same-sex unions entered while the appeal is pending.’”
‘Judge Walker makes little or no reference to the fact that nearly all of plaintiffs’ “experts” are political activists for gay causes and that many or most are in same-sex relationships. They’re just neutral experts.’”
The Christian Post: “Newt Gingrich, a Republican former Speaker of the House, wrote on his blog last week that there should be no mosque near Ground Zero if there are no churches or synagogues in Saudi Arabia.The term Cordoba, Gingrich stressed, refers to Cordoba, Spain, ‘the capital of Muslim conquerors who symbolized their victory over the Christian Spaniards by transforming a church there into the world’s third-largest mosque complex.’” | Newt Gingrich statement on the proposed “Cordoba House” mosque near Ground Zero