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Pew Research: Immigrants to the U.S. are increasingly identifying themselves as religiously unaffiliated, that is, atheist, agnostic or having “no religion in particular,” according to a new Pew Research Center study of America’s religious composition. Indeed, recent immigrants (those who have arrived since 2000) are as likely to have no religious affiliation as the country’s overall adult population.
Daily Signal: A Republican senator from Oklahoma pressed Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson at a hearing Wednesday about why the U.S. is “misrepresenting” Americans’ First Amendment right to freedom of religion to immigrants who are applying to become U.S. citizens.
Vox: The real issue here is whether a religious organization taking federal money needs to abide by the laws of the government or of its faith. From the ACLU’s perspective, Catholic Charities is taking millions of dollars in federal contracts to care for migrant children and teenagers, and it’s the nonprofit’s job to carry out what the government wants — including abortion access. From the Catholic perspective, the government is yet again putting new requirements on existing contracts, and following those requirements would facilitate women getting abortions, in contravention of their faith and their organizational policy.
Fox News (AP): The Supreme Court has denied an appeal from former California high school students who were ordered to turn their American flag T-shirts inside out during a celebration of the Cinco de Mayo holiday at school.
WND: “American students shouldn’t be censored just because government officials think someone might be offended,” said Senior Legal Counsel Jeremy Tedesco of the Alliance Defending Freedom, one of the legal teams filing friend-of-the-court briefs in support of overturning the ruling.
Alliance Defending Freedom: What is this strange obsession so many in our nation have with silencing opinions they disagree with? It’s not like there aren’t other options – open and reasonable debate, the verdict of the ballot box, the simple option of ignoring those with whom one doesn’t see eye to eye.
ADF Media: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys filed a friend-of-the-court brief Tuesday with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of students at Morgan Hill Unified School District in California who were prohibited from wearing American flag T-shirts to express their patriotism.
Family Studies: Amid all the changing family structures we’re seeing in the U.S. today, middle-class immigrants arguably paint one of the more familiar icons of a traditional ideal, at least on their statistical face. Asian Americans are more likely than the average American to get and stay married; just 5 percent of Asian-American adults are divorced, versus 10 percent of the general population. Eighty-three percent of Asian kids live in two-parent homes. Hispanics, while marrying less than the population at large, also split up less frequently than the general population (8 percent of them are divorced).
Emma Margolin at MSNBC: “On Monday, 39 years to the day after the two were married, Anthony Sullivan asked the Los Angeles Field Office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to reopen his late-husband’s petition for a marriage-based green card. The 72-year-old has lived in the shadows without lawful status for years – unable to travel outside the country, and always with the threat of deportation hanging over his head. But now, Sullivan is requesting that USCIS retroactively approve his green card application and automatically convert it to a widower’s petition, allowing him the opportunity to live out the rest of his life legally in the place he calls home.”
AFP: “Nineteen people were arrested in raids Tuesday targeting a suspected immigration scam where people are brought from India to Britain as religious ministers and then disappear.”
Telegraph: More than a third of the increase, 38 per cent or 148,700 people, was accounted for by immigration with the rest accounted for by “natural change”, the fact that 243,900 more babies were born than people that died.
The Hill: President Obama on Wednesday rallied faith leaders to pressure Republicans to pursue comprehensive immigration reform during a morning meeting at the White House.
Lambda Legal: Last April, the Immigration Judge concluded that Anthony had not proved he was gay, pointing to the children, to Anthony’s earlier relationships with women, and to testimony that Anthony had not told his children or their mothers that he is gay. However, in their friend-of-the-court brief, Lambda Legal and CHLP cited several studies documenting that for many LGB individuals, acknowledging that one is lesbian, gay or bisexual is often a prolonged process.
Betsy Woodruff at National Review: The lesson of all of this should be that any sentence that says “Evangelicals believe [fill in the blank] regarding immigration [or just about any other political issue]” is seriously fraught. There are approximately 90 to 100 million Evangelical Christians in America (per Wheaton College’s Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals). That number is big, and one might expect a certain diversity.
ABA Journal: In a case that pits First Amendment rights of young Americans to display pride in their country against the power of high school administrators to take reasonable measures to promote student safety, a federal appellate panel heard oral arguments Thursday about whether to revive a lawsuit brought by former students who wanted to wear T-shirts featuring the U.S. flag.
AP: Racial tensions and gang problems were plaguing a Northern California high school when three students arrived for classes in 2010 wearing American flag T-shirts on Cinco de Mayo.
LifeSiteNews: Today the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is filing a petition with the United States Supreme Court to hear Romeike v. Holder, the German homeschooling asylum case.
BBC: Thousands of Islamist extremists in the UK see the British public as a legitimate target for attacks, the director general of MI5 has warned.
AZ Central: In a ruling today, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to lift an injunction against a piece of SB 1070, Arizona’s immigration law, that makes it a crime to transport or harbor illegal immigrants. | Valle Del Sol Incorporated v. State of Arizona
Maricopa Monitor: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said earlier this month it will determine someone’s marital status by the place they were wed, not where they are now living. That means the agency will consider the partner a spouse despite Arizona law.
AP: After their efforts to legalize gay marriage fizzled in Illinois this year, advocates gave their campaign a serious makeover: They called on unions, focused longer-term and recalibrated their message by using personal stories instead of civil rights comparisons.
Pravda: France’s Interior Minister Manuel Valls said that there was a need to review the country’s migration policy in relation to Africans and questioned the compatibility of Islam and democracy.
CNSNews: Asked Thursday if the Affordable Care Act will help “undocumented individuals,” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said no — and that’s why immigration reform is so important . . .
Dallas News: Democratic Dallas County commissioners narrowly agreed this afternoon to join a lawsuit against Republican Texas Gov. Rick Perry over state efforts to enforce a controversial voter identification law.
NewsObserver: Kansas and Arizona officials have filed a federal lawsuit in an attempt to force a federal elections agency to change its voter registration forms to compel proof of citizenship.
AP: Civil liberties advocates said Wednesday they have uncovered a government program to screen immigrants for national security concerns that has blacklisted some Muslims and put their U.S. citizenship applications on hold for years.
CNSNews: Panelists in a Google+ hangout hosted by the U.S. Department of State encouraged foreigners in civil partnerships to get married in order to obtain a U.S visa more quickly. – See more at: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/state-dept-panel-advises-gay-foreigners-civil-unions-get-married#sthash.J9YYITx8.dpuf
The Longer Hispanics Experience U.S. Culture, The Less Socially Conservative they Become | Barna Group
Barna Group: While on the whole, Hispanics are more conservative than might be expected, one of the key findings of the research is a significant gap between U.S.-born Hispanics and foreign-born Hispanics. On almost all counts, U.S.-born Hispanics (including those born in Puerto Rico) are much less conservative in their social views than are those born elsewhere.
LifeSiteNews: Canada’s newly appointed immigration minister said that Russia is wrong in restricting homosexual propaganda aimed at youth and indicated that refugee claims by Russian homosexuals will be given serious consideration by the Conservative government.
Legal Insurrection: I’ll have to leave the next questions to the immigration law experts: Would the Romeikes have been better off under the Gang of 8 bill and/or Obama administrative policy if they did not apply for asylum, which is a legal route to permanent residency, but instead came here illegally?
Art Leonard Observations: On July 17, the administrative body whose opinion on this would be crucial also opted for the “place of celebration rule,” as the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), a body within the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review, ruled on a pending petition by a U.S. citizen seeking lawful resident status for his same-sex spouse. Serge Polajenko . . .
Patrick J. Buchanan at Human Events: “No longer committed to a particular place, people, country or culture, our largest public companies have turned globalist, while abdicating the responsibility they once assumed to America and its workers.” . . . Silicon Valley demands hundreds of thousands more H-1Bs — foreign graduate students who can be hired for half what an American engineer might need to support his family.
AP: Pivotal developments on two cultural issues – immigration reform and gay marriage – offer an early preview of potential fault lines among Republicans weighing White House bids in 2016.
AP: A Bulgarian graduate student and his American husband are the first gay couple in the nation to have their green card petition approved after the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriages, their lawyer says.
Washington Times: The Supreme Court’s ruling that the federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional should immediately open up immigration benefits to same-sex partners in states where their unions are recognized as marriages.
The Hill: The Senate voted Monday to advance a border security amendment to bipartisan immigration legislation, building momentum for a final vote later this week. The vote stood at 66-26 at 6:30 Monday evening and was being held open to allow more senators to return to Washington to vote
Ken Klukowski at Breitbart: Conservatives are launching a multi-track strategy in the wake of the Supreme Court’s major election law case this week.
AP: Republican lawmakers have a message for those who want the party to soften its emphasis on social conservatism in hopes of reaching a wider national audience: Not so fast.
The Hill: “This hole in federal statutory law allows non-citizens to register and thereby encourages voter fraud,” Cruz wrote on his Facebook page. “I will file a commonsense amendment to the immigration bill that permits states to require I.D. before registering voters.”
The Hill: “If this bill has in it something that gives gay couples immigration rights and so forth, it kills the bill,” Rubio said Thursday on the “Andrea Tantaros Show.” “I’m gone, I’m off it, and I’ve said that repeatedly. I don’t think that’s going to happen, and it shouldn’t happen, this is already a difficult enough issue as it is.”
RT.com: Youth gang riots in the Swedish capital Stockholm have entered fifth straight night. Hundreds of mostly immigrant teenagers tore through the suburbs, smashing windows and burning cars in the country’s worst outbreak of violence in years.
AP: Two people familiar with the Senate immigration deliberations say the White House has suggested to Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy that it would be best to put off a controversy over gay marriage until a bill goes before the full Senate.
The Independent: report published by the Office for National Statistics revealed that the percentage of people following a Christian faith dropped from 71.7 per cent in 2001 to 59.3 per cent in 2011. More than one in 10 under 25s in the UK now describe themselves as Muslim.
Globe and Mail: While the Christian faith continues to dominate Canada’s immigrant profile, its proportion has been steadily fading. Where more than 78 per cent of immigrants to Canada prior to 1971 identified themselves as Christians, that proportion has dropped to 47.5 per cent among those who arrived over the past five years, the survey found.
Politico: Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) proposed two amendments to the Gang of Eight immigration legislation to extend legal rights to gay couples, one of whom is foreign born.
AP: Richard Land, a leader of the Southern Baptist Convention, told reporters on a conference call Wednesday that evangelicals are hopeful the bill will remain focused on immigration and steer clear of gay rights.
Wall Street Journal (access via Google): Senators began laying the groundwork Sunday for formal debate on immigration-overhaul legislation, including a provision that would extend immigration rights for same-sex couples.
Patrick Buchanan at The American Conservative: What benefit do we derive as a people to justify the risks we take by opening up America to mass migration from a world aflame with hatred and hostility over race, ethnicity, culture, history and faith? Why are we bringing all of the world’s quarrelsome minorities, and all the world’s quarrels with them, into our home? What we saw in Boston was the dark side of diversity.
WorldNetDaily: U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, in remarks that largely have escaped notice, has claimed that “creating a mechanism for [illegal aliens] to earn citizenship and move out of the shadows… is a matter of civil and human rights.”
AP: Frustrated at being left out of an immigration overhaul, gay rights groups are pushing to adjust a bipartisan Senate bill to include gay couples.
Washington Post: The story suggests immigration reform could “cripple Republican prospects in many states they now win easily.” Assuming all 11 million illegal immigrants could vote and that 71 percent supported President Obama in 2012 (his share of the Hispanic vote last fall) the article says that he would have significantly narrowed the GOP’s margin in Arizona, Georgia and Texas.
Politico: The immigration proposal pending in Congress would transform the nation’s political landscape for a generation or more — pumping as many as 11 million new Hispanic voters into the electorate a decade from now in ways that, if current trends hold, would produce an electoral bonanza for Democrats and cripple Republican prospects in many states they now win easily.
MyDesert.com: A lesbian couple facing immigration troubles has the standing to challenge the federal Defense of Marriage Act because it violates the constitutional rights of immigrants in same-sex marriages, a federal judge has ruled. | Aranas v. Napalitono, Order Granting in Part and Denying in Part Motions to Dismiss | Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law Case Information Page
New Yorker: Last week, a young man came to the doors of the Seventy-Two, a shelter for migrants in Tenosique, Mexico, to deliver a message from a local offshoot of the Zetas, Mexico’s most vicious organized-crime group. “What we want is the head of the friar who is in charge of all this,” the man said. “We are going to the shelter today to get all of them.”
Pat Buchanan at Human Events: What killed the New Majority? First, there was mass immigration . . . Second came party acquiescence in dropping half the nation off the income tax rolls, while making half dependent on government . . . Third, to accommodate its K Street bundlers, the GOP embraced globalism, empowering Corporate America to shed its U.S. labor force . . . Fourth, rather than bringing the troops home after our Cold War triumph and telling our allies the free rides were over, Bush I and II went crusading for a “New World Order” to “end tyranny in our world.” . . .
The Australian: As revealed in The Australian, the report released yesterday recommends that the government promote the message that “multiculturalism entails both a respect for cultural diversity” and a commitment “to the framework of Australian laws and values which underpin social cohesion”.
AP on Google: “The idea that a major political party must accept the practice of homosexuality as normal so as to remain relevant will prove the contrary and lead to disaster,” said John Horvat II, a Catholic scholar. And Jenny Beth Martin, national coordinator for the Tea Party Patriots, faulted Washington GOP establishment leaders for the November losses, saying they strayed from the conservative message. “Americans and those in the tea party movement don’t need an ‘autopsy’ report from RNC to know they failed to promote our principles and lost because of it,” she said.
Washington Post: O’Connor was in the panel majority that said Arizona’s requirement of proof of citizenship when registering to vote in federal elections conflicted with federal law.
AP: Justice Anthony Kennedy says he is concerned that the U.S. Supreme Court is increasingly the venue for deciding politically charged issues such as gay marriage, health care and immigration.
NPR: A panel of the the San Francisco-based U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals stood with a lower court, ruling that a ban on drivers soliciting day laborers violates the constitution’s free speech guarantee.
Baptist Press: A family homeschooling safely in rural Tennessee may be forced to return to their native Germany, where the parents likely face huge fines and criminal penalties, and could lose custody of their five school-age children. Uwe and Hannelore Romeike are looking to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to give them permanent refugee status. But Attorney General Eric Holder is disputing their case, arguing Germany’s ban on homeschooling fails to violate the family’s fundamental rights.
MLive.com: U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga has introduced legislation that would prohibit federal dollars allocated to the Department of Homeland Security from being used for abortions.
Religion Clause Blog: Christian Churches Together, an organization of over 40 Christian church groups (Catholic, Orthodox, evangelical and main-line Protestant) last week issued a press release and Statement (full text) calling for comprehensive immigration law reform.
The Hill: Since then, he has offered an immigration proposal that would give the same benefits to heterosexual and same-sex couples, called on the Boy Scouts to open its membership to gays, and seen the Pentagon announce it would offer certain benefits to same-sex couples.
Mario H. Lopez at Human Life Review: But a lesser-known story is that over the last 40 years in the United States, many leaders of this movement have hijacked concerns over immigration to advance their agenda. Population-control advocates have built, operated, and funded much of the anti-immigration movement in the United States. What follows helps explain how this has happened and sheds light on the pervasive connections between the population- control movement and the principal proponents of immigration restrictions.
AP: The nation’s Roman Catholic bishops are in a difficult position as the debate over immigration reform gets underway: The immigrant-built American church, known for advocating a broad welcome for migrants and refugees, could end up opposing reform because it would recognize same-sex partners.