Friends, The new Alliance Alert Daily Digest is finally here! You can subscribe to the daily e-mail here: Subscribe to our mailing list * indicates required Email Address * First Name * Last Name *
The Hill: It pains me to say this as a veteran, but the American military is engaged in a terrible double standard. It claims to want to respect people for who they are, but in reality, it is involved in an almost cult-like determination to advance the hyper-homosexualization of the military, and as a result, it is tearing apart the good order and discipline which holds our armed forces together.
The Gospel Coalition: We’re continuing our series through several of this year’s notable Commencement speeches. Last week, we looked at Stephen Colbert’s address to Wake Forest University. Today, we’re hearing from Ian McEwan, an acclaimed English novelist and screenwriter, who delivered a message to the graduates at Dickinson College.
The New York Times: According to the prisoners’ rights group Freedom for the Brave, 163 people have been forcibly disappeared in Egypt since April.
One News Now: Samantha Harris of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, or FIRE, says the policy suffers from a “common defect” among colleges and universities, which is conflicting definitions within the same set of rules.
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.
The Daily Signal: Later this month The Supreme Court is expected to issue its ruling on state marriage laws. Here are the three most important things you need to know about the case, and what to do after the Court rules.
The Christian Institute: The Church is facing “an ever increasing intolerance”, the new Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland has said, as he called for Christians to speak out boldly in the public square.
BR Now: The same month, the NAACP sent a letter to Bomberger and LifeNews demanding they remove the parody in seven days. Bomberger, represented by attorneys with Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), filed for declaratory judgment, and the NAACP filed a trademark infringement counter suit.
The College Fix: David Hacker, senior legal counsel at Alliance Defending Freedom, accused the campus of “viewpoint discrimination” and violating the pro-life students’ First Amendment rights.
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.
One News Now: Alliance Defending Freedom appealed to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which reversed the lower court’s decision. That reversal essentially protects people who would criticize an organization or company; unless, of course, the NAACP files another appeal and wins.
Religion News Service: Evangelist Franklin Graham has taken to Facebook to plead for prayers on behalf of each U.S. Supreme Court justices as they prepare to rule on gay marriage.
The Patriot Post: Much to the Left’s displeasure, free speech doesn’t have to be popular to be protected. In this case, it’s both. A federal judge disagreed — unleashing a wild opinion that banned Ryan from “even mentioning the parodied name or parodying the NAACP’s name in the future.” With the help of Alliance Defending Freedom, Bomberger appealed to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which wasted no time rebuking the lower court’s logic. In a huge victory for free speech (and the millions of children who could be saved by Bomberger’s), the three-judge panel blew apart the Left’s arguments, ruling 3-0 in Radiance’s favor.
Headline “NAACP: National Association for the Abortion of Colored People” does not infringe the NAACP’s trademark
The Washington Post: I’m happy to report that the Fourth Circuit has just handed down Radiance Foundation v. NAACP, which holds that trademark law should be read narrowly in cases involving speech (other than commercial advertising).
Townhall: Fortunately, Bomberger and his foundation didn’t stop there but took the case, which was defended by Alliance Defending Freedom, before the Fourth Circuit of Appeals. Today, more than two years after the whole ordeal began, Bomberger, The Radiance Foundation and the First Amendment, won a decisive victory in federal court.
World Magazine: In a ruling issued late Tuesday, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided unanimously with the pro-life Radiance Foundation in its trademark infringement fight with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
The Washington Times: Radiance appealed with the help of an attorney affiliated with the Alliance Defending Freedom, and the appellate panel overturned Judge Jackson’s ruling, saying the NAACP did “not have actionable claims for trademark infringement.”
Life Dynamics: The Radiance Foundation, represented by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) , then filed a declaratory judgment action in federal court, and in return, the NAACP filed counter-claims of “trademark infringement, dilution and confusion” for parodying the organization’s name in what the group describes as, “the NAACP’s documented pro-abortion position and actions.”
http://www.adfmedia.org/News/PRDetail/9640 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled Tuesday that a non-profit organization did not violate trademark infringement after posting an article online that parodied the name of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
Life News: Alliance Defending Freedom allied attorney Charles M. Allen with the Glen Allen, Va. firm Goodman, Allen & Filetti PLLC is defending Bomberger and Radiance in U.S. District Court in The Radiance Foundation v. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People for the Eastern District of Virginia, Norfolk Division.
Valencia College sonography students allege retaliation for objecting to transvaginal ultrasounds by classmates
FIRE: Two former students of Valencia College, a public institution in Orlando, Florida, have accused college officials of violating their First Amendment rights after they were allegedly punished for complaining about Valencia’s practice of having female students repeatedly undergo transvaginal ultrasounds at the hands of their classmates. The unnamed students filed a complaint in federal court last week, claiming that faculty members threatened their academic standing and future careers in retaliation for their speech.
The New York Times: Former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida hardened his position against same-sex marriage in an interview that aired on Sunday, making clear he did not believe in constitutional protection for gay marriages — an issue now before the United States Supreme Court — and leaving out his past call for “respect” for gay couples.
The New York Times: No one was sure if she was emphasizing her own beliefs or giving a hint to the outcome of the case the Supreme Court is considering whether to decide if same-sex marriage is constitutional.
North Jersey: “In most of these cases when a teacher is operating on their private Facebook page, it’s very clear they’re speaking in their personal capacity and not as an employee,” said Rory Gray, legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom.
Legal Times (Access via Google): Protesters arrested for disrupting the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year argue the law prohibiting a “harangue or oration” or other “loud” language at the high court violates the First Amendment.
Religion Clause: Religion News Service reported yesterday that as the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage nears, legislation has been introduced in several states to block the effect of a ruling in favor of marriage equality.
First Things: Recent arguments at the Supreme Court revealed deep confusion about the nature of dignity. Arguing that “the marriage institution did not develop to deny dignity or to give second class status to anyone,” but rather “to serve purposes that, by their nature, arise from biology,” attorney James J. Bursch described the push to legalize same-sex marriage as the desire to “take an institution that was never intended to be dignity-bestowing, and make it dignity-bestowing.”
Religion News Service: The U.S. Supreme Court is now weighing arguments in the same-sex marriage case it heard on April 28 that could lead to a landmark decision requiring all states to acknowledge the unions.
Religion News Service: A teenage blogger from Singapore has been found guilty of insulting Christians and of distributing an obscene image of the country’s founding father, Lee Kuan Yew, and former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
Public Discourse: We need offensive cartoons, obnoxious cartoonists, and offended sensibilities. Without them, society stagnates and tyranny reigns.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Katy Faust was raised by her mom and her mom’s same-sex partner after her mom and dad divorced. She co-wrote an amicus brief for the Supreme Court marriage cases, and in it, she called for the Justices to consider the needs of children, including their natural desire to know both their mom and dad.
The Washington Post: I keep hearing about a supposed “hate speech” exception to the First Amendment, or statements such as, “This isn’t free speech, it’s hate speech,” or “When does free speech stop and hate speech begin?” But there is no hate speech exception to the First Amendment.
Nathan Cherry: The Supreme Court is the highest court in the United States. Once they make a decision it is binding on all 50 states and there is little (if any) recourse for anyone opposed to the ruling. For this reason the pending decision regarding marriage is more than important, it is potentially historic.
Forbes: A worldwide debate has emerged over religion and freedom of speech. And who, by example, has become America’s best advocate for free speech? The surprising answer may be the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
First Things: After all, I explained, there were serious issues at stake, not only for Christians or even religious people, but issues of human rights and social justice. First of all, I noted, we were marching because every child has the basic, inalienable human right to a mother and a father. She made the point that there are plenty of children who already exist outside the boundaries of this right: children in broken families, with deceased or absent parents, and those with same-sex families. I agreed. Many people are tragically deprived of many inalienable human rights: life and liberty being among them. But should the Supreme Court vote that the freedom to deprive a child of basic human rights is protected under the Constitution?
AZ Central: But true freedom is neither kind nor gentle. Forcing the guarantees of the First Amendment to abide by good manners would make them meaningless.
World Magazine (Subscription Required): Marriage as it has always been understood had its day in court. But throughout the 2 1/2-hour oral arguments over same-sex marriage last week at the Supreme Court, neither side of the debate seemed to understand the real meaning of marriage, nor the Court’s role in defining it.
World Magazine (Subscription Required): I can say with 99 percent certainty I’ll never draw the Islamic prophet Muhammad as a parody or as a serious depiction, but I have criticized radical Islam and will continue to do so. I don’t go out of my way to offend, but, as a Christian and a conservative with published opinions, I end up offending someone.
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.”
National Law Journal: When Scott McLean wanted to sell his 2008 Chevrolet Malibu in 2012, he parked it on a street in Alexandria, Virginia, with “For Sale” signs in the windows. He was fined $40 for violating a city ordinance against such displays. When McLean wanted to sell his 2007 Dodge Ram truck in 2014, he took the city of Alexandria to court over the lawfulness of the ban on “for sale” signs.
The Federalist: When I was younger, it was popular for idealistic liberals to embrace some form of Voltaire’s (misattributed) “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it” to claim the high ground in a debate.
New Hampshire Union Leader: The Washington-based Alliance for Defending Freedom joined with Tierney in the appeal, which was filed Tuesday. – See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20150422/NEWS21/150429756#sthash.do1uZFqW.dpuf
Religion Clause: In Adams v. Scott, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 47928 (CD IL, April 10, 015), an Illinois federal district court permitted five non-denominational civil detainees to move ahead with their complaint that their RLUIPA and free exercise rights were infringed by refusal to create non-denominational religious services and by a policy that requires them to declare an affiliation with a denomination in order to attend services.
Charisma News: Ryan Bomberger: Our lawyers from Alliance Defending Freedom are very thorough. Chuck Allen, as a trademark attorney, understands the Lanham Act—which the NAACP is trying to use to crush our right to free speech.
Toledo Blade: It was no accident that the Founders enshrined religious freedom in the First Amendment to our Constitution. As James Madison wrote: “Conscience is the most sacred of all property.” The amendment bars Congress from establishing a national religion or enacting laws that unduly stifle the free exercise of religion.
Watchdog: Within a month of the ruling, Alliance Defending Freedom had prepared a lawsuit against the bill and secured a court order restricting enforcement.
The Global Dispatch: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys filed an appeal Thursday of a federal court’s decision that kept in place a Pittsburgh censorship zone ordinance. The ordinance allows the creation of hundreds of censorship zones throughout the city that ban leafleting and other free speech around the facilities of abortionists, eye doctors, dentists, and any “therapeutic,” “healing,” or “health-building” treatment services.
Townhall: We’re grateful Alliance Defending Freedom has been defending our civil rights in light of the NAACP’s efforts to censor us.
PR Newswire: The case is now before three justices at the Fourth Circuit. Oral arguments will be heard Wednesday, March 25th. Alliance Defending Freedom allied attorney Charles M. Allen of the law firm Goodman, Allen & Filetti PLLC is defending Bomberger and Radiance inRadiance Foundation v. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
One News Now: “The good news is the University of Georgia has revised their speech policies – so not just Young Americans for Liberty can speak more freely, but any campus group [can],” Kerri Kupec tells OneNewsNow. “They can host informational tables and displays, they can use handheld signs on campus without fear of punishment from university officials. So really this is a big win for free speech for everyone.”
One News Now: ADF attorney Steven Aden was present for arguments this week before the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Life News: ADF attorney Steven Aden was present for arguments this week before the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
ADF Media: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys filed an appeal Thursday of a federal court’s decision that kept in place a Pittsburgh censorship zone ordinance. The ordinance allows the creation of hundreds of censorship zones throughout the city that ban leafleting and other free speech around the facilities of abortionists, eye doctors, dentists, and any “therapeutic,” “healing,” or “health-building” treatment services.
The New York Times: Safe spaces are an expression of the conviction, increasingly prevalent among college students, that their schools should keep them from being “bombarded” by discomfiting or distressing viewpoints. Think of the safe space as the live-action version of the better-known trigger warning, a notice put on top of a syllabus or an assigned reading to alert students to the presence of potentially disturbing material.
Christian Legal Centre: A Christian street preacher has today (23 MAR) been convicted of a Public Order offence for using the ‘wrong Bible verse’ in a public conversation with a man who identifies as homosexual.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Perhaps, like me, you find it hard not to marvel at the determined effort by so many authorities throughout the U.S. to impose silence on any speech that might disagree with their policies, raise thoughtful questions, or simply provide information useful to voters, students, and other fellow citizens.
Alliance Defending Freedom: The campus of a college or university is supposed to be the “marketplace of ideas,” a breeding ground for ideas, debates, and discourse among students, professors, and faculty. But some universities seem to think that’s only true as long as this expression happens only within certain very small zones designated by the university and only if the university grants approval.
Forbes: Americans take religious liberty for granted. It is the First Freedom, guaranteed by the First Amendment. But four of five people around the world lack the freedom to worship and live faithfully. And the percentage of the world’s population lacking religious liberty recently edged upward. Attacks on Jews hit a recent peak. Even Americans cannot afford to take their freedoms for granted.
FIRE: Few argue that there are or should be no limits to freedom of expression. But too often, would-be censors who have nothing else with which to justify their efforts at silencing others fall back on that old standard: “You can’t shout ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.”
Forbes: By the end of 2014, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) had identified 221 journalists in prison across the world, the second highest number since the organization started recording these figures in 1990. China and Iran were the worst offenders, holding a third of all journalists jailed globally.
Christian Concern: Mike has been preaching the gospel on the streets of Taunton for over five years. But he’s faced real opposition — police even appealed to the public in a local newspaper to record him preaching so that they could get evidence of him making “offensive remarks”.
The Christian Post: Specifically, the goals of our suit – filed by Alliance Defending Freedom – were: 1) to hold GT accountable for selective enforcement of its speech codes, which resulted in mainstream conservative speech often being considered “hate speech” and “intolerant,” while politically-charged, far-out-of-the-mainstream Leftist speech was considered part of the “intellectual diversity” purportedly valued by the Institute…
Campus Reform: “Universities cannot function as a marketplace of ideas if free speech is limited to less than one percent of campus,” said ADF Legal Counsel Travis Barham. “We commend the University of Georgia for understanding this and revising its speech policy so that students can speak more freely throughout campus without fear of punishment.”
Christian News Network: A street preacher in the UK who is charged with making “homophobic” and “Islamophobic” remarks has just completed a two-day trial and awaits a verdict on whether or not biblical speech about the issues is considered a crime in the country.
Christian Legal Centre Press Release: Michael Overd faces trial for three offences under the Public Order Act. The CPS is bringing the case against Mr Overd, stating it to be “in the public interest”.
One News Now: Alliance Defending Freedom is representing the pro-lifers and will make a decision on whether or not to appeal.
Life Site News: ADF Litigation Counsel Elissa Graves said that “Americans, including those who are pro-life, have the freedom to speak with whomever they please on public sidewalks.” Graves also said that ADF may appeal the decision.
Christian Concern: Bpas, Britain’s largest abortion provider, has delivered a petition to Downing Street asking the government to introduce “buffer zones” around abortion clinics intended to stop the display of images that show the reality of abortion.
Christian Concern: Last month, the Government responded to concerns over the impact of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 on ‘freedom of expression’ in universities by introducing a new clause into the Act and promising to re-draft proposed guidance. However, media reports now suggest that the Government may be planning to back-track on its promise.
The Global Dispatch: “Universities cannot function as a marketplace of ideas if free speech is limited to less than one percent of campus,” said ADF Legal Counsel Travis Barham. “We commend the University of Georgia for understanding this and revising its speech policy so that students can speak more freely throughout campus without fear of punishment.”
Jurist: ADF counsel Elissa Graves stated: Americans, including those who are pro-life, have the freedom to speak with whomever they please on public sidewalks. As the [US] Supreme Court noted just last year, this freedom has been a foundational element in American life since the nation began. Because of this, we are considering appeal of the court’s decision, which allows enforcement of Pittsburgh’s unconstitutional censorship zones to continue.
TribLive: “Americans, including those who are pro-life, have the freedom to speak with whomever they please on public sidewalks,” said attorney Elissa Graves. “As the U.S. Supreme Court noted just last year, this freedom has been a foundational element in American life since the nation began.”
WFMJ (AP): The Alliance Defending Freedom, which represents the abortion protesters who brought the lawsuit, says in a news release that it’s considering appealing the judge’s decision.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Elissa Graves, an Alliance Defending Freedom lawyer, described the buffer zone as a “censorship zone,” and said her organization is considering an appeal.