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Posts tagged ‘Religious Freedom’

Newsom Shuts Down California Churches Indefinitely


Reported By Mary Margaret Olohan | Published July 14, 2020 at 2:05pm

URL of the originating web site: https://www.westernjournal.com/newsom-shuts-california-churches-indefinitely/

“We’re going back into modification mode of our original stay at home order,” Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom said, according to The New York Times. “This continues to be a deadly disease.”

The DCNF pressed both the governor’s office and the California Department of Health on when Californians may attend indoor religious services again, and what punishments Californians face if they do attempt to attend banned services. Newsom’s office referred the DCNF to the California Department of Health. CDPH referred the DCNF to a news release on the matter, noting that the order went into effect immediately and that it will remain in effect indefinitely until the State Public Health Officer decides to lift it.

CDPH did not provide an end date.

CDPH would not directly address what punishments Californians might face if they continue to gather for indoor religious services.

“The Governor has consistently said that asking people to do the right thing is the most powerful enforcement tool we have,” spokeswoman Ali Bay told the DCNF.

“We all have a shared responsibility to do the right thing to not only protect ourselves, but those around us.”

“This is a statewide requirement and flows from the same legal authority as all of the other state orders,” she added.

“Californians have done incredible work following those orders — saving lives in the process. We expect that will continue to be the case.”

The new guidance comes after months of outrage from Californians who have been prevented from attending religious services. The Department of Justice intervened in May, warning the governor that California’s reopening plan discriminates against houses of worship.

“Simply put, there is no pandemic exception to the U.S. Constitution and its Bill of Rights,” Eric S. Dreiband, the head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, said in May.

Dreiband also reminded Newsom that Attorney General William Barr recently issued a statement in which Barr emphasized that “even in times of emergency … federal statutory law prohibits discrimination against religious institutions and religious believers.”

“Government may not impose special restrictions on religious activity that do not also apply to similar nonreligious activity,” Barr said.

“For example, if a government allows movie theaters, restaurants, concert halls, and other comparable places of assembly to remain open and unrestricted, it may not order houses of worship to close, limit their congregation size, or otherwise impede religious gatherings.”

The Justice Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.

Trump Signs Religious Freedom Executive Order


Reported By Jack Davis | Published June 2, 2020 at 5:22pm

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday to promote religious freedom for oppressed religious minorities around the world.

“Religious freedom, America’s first freedom, is a moral and national security imperative,” the order read, according to a text posted on the White House website. “Religious freedom for all people worldwide is a foreign policy priority of the United States, and the United States will respect and vigorously promote this freedom.”

Trump signed the order privately, without any media present.

The president’s action came on the same day he and first lady Melania Trump visited the Saint John Paul II National Shrine, where they laid a wreath at the statue of the former pope, according to Fox News.


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President Trump signed an executive order that seeks to promote international religious freedom and stop religious persecution overseas after visiting @JP2Shrine. One of the items in the EO calls for spending millions of dollars to assist programs that advance religious freedom.

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Washington Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory lashed out at the visit, which came a day after Trump visited St. John’s Episcopal Church across from the White House, which had been damaged Sunday by rioters.

“I find it baffling and reprehensible that any Catholic facility would allow itself to be so egregiously misused and manipulated in a fashion that violates our religious principles, which call us to defend the rights of all people even those with whom we might disagree,” Gregory said in a statement.

“Saint Pope John Paul II was an ardent defender of the rights and dignity of human beings. His legacy bears vivid witness to that truth. He certainly would not condone the use of tear gas and other deterrents to silence, scatter or intimidate them for a photo opportunity in front of a place of worship and peace,” Gregory said, repeating an apparently false report that protesters were tear-gassed after scuffling with police so that the president could have a photo opportunity.

In his order, Trump said religious freedom is essential.

“[O]ur Founders understood religious freedom not as a creation of the state, but as a gift of God to every person and a right that is fundamental for the flourishing of our society,” the order read.

“Religious communities and organizations, and other institutions of civil society, are vital partners in United States Government efforts to advance religious freedom around the world. It is the policy of the United States to engage robustly and continually with civil society organizations — including those in foreign countries — to inform United States Government policies, programs, and activities related to international religious freedom.”

The order requires the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development to “prioritize international religious freedom in the planning and implementation of United States foreign policy and in the foreign assistance programs of the Department of State and USAID.”

In addition, the order requires than $50 million per year be spent on programs “intended to anticipate, prevent, and respond to attacks against individuals and groups on the basis of their religion, including programs designed to help ensure that such groups can persevere as distinct communities; to promote accountability for the perpetrators of such attacks; to ensure equal rights and legal protections for individuals and groups regardless of belief; to improve the safety and security of houses of worship and public spaces for all faiths; and to protect and preserve the cultural heritages of religious communities.”

“Yet again, President Trump is taking a decisive action to keep his promise to people of faith around the world,” White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said of the order, according to Fox.

“This executive order fully integrates the president’s vision – a vigorous defense of international religious freedom rights for all – into key aspects of United States foreign policy.”

Trump’s order was praised on Twitter.


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“People are attacked for their faith, not just me, but Christian men and women across this country. It’s unfortunate, but I think we found a real voice in President Trump who stood for religious freedom and pro-life and [has] given us this boldness.” https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2020/may/i-believe-god-put-me-in-this-place-for-a-purpose-new-wh-press-secretary-on-faith-love-of-country-and-overcoming-adversity 

‘I Believe God Put Me in This Place for a Purpose’: New WH Press Secretary on Faith, Love of…

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Murad Ismael

@murad_ismael

We welcome President Trump’s executive order promoting global religious freedom. The United States role in supporting religious freedom is critical to fight injustice practiced today against religious minorities worldwide. https://nypost.com/2020/06/02/trump-to-sign-executive-order-promoting-global-religious-freedom/ 

Trump to sign executive order promoting global religious freedom

President Trump on Tuesday will sign an executive order to promote religious freedom overseas. Trump is scheduled to sign the order after a visit to the Saint John Paul II National Shrine in

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The order calls for the State Department to work with nations that have been identified by the Commission on International Religious Freedom as those where religious freedom is either absent or under siege.

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Trump DOE Promotes School Prayer on National Religious Freedom Day


Written by Penny Starr | 

URL of the original posting site: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/01/16/trump-doe-promotes-school-prayer-on-national-religious-freedom-day/

Girl closed her eyes and folded her hand in prayer on a Holy Bible / Sasiistock/Getty Images

President Donald Trump is marking National Religious Freedom Day with a ceremony at the White House on Thursday and is also issuing a guidance letter to educational institutions and the public on students’ Constitutional right to prayer.

The guidance will be posted in the Federal Register on January 21, 2020 and it states, in part:

Section 8524(a) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act and codified at 20 U.S.C. 7904(a), requires the Secretary to issue guidance to State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational agencies (LEAs), and the public on constitutionally protected prayer in public elementary and secondary schools. In addition, section 8524(b) requires that, as a condition of receiving ESEA funds, an LEA must certify in writing to its SEA that it has no policy that prevents, or otherwise denies participation in, constitutionally protected prayer in public schools as detailed in this updated guidance.

Education Week’s report on the guidance noted precedent for the Trump administration’s move:

The Elementary and Secondary Education Act, in its current and past versions, requires the U.S. Department of Education to provide guidance on prayer in schools every two years, but that guidance hasn’t been updated since 2003, a senior administration official said.

“President Trump is committed to making sure that people of faith, particularly children,” are not discouraged from constitutionally protected rights to pray, an administration official said in a conference call with reporters.

The new school prayer guidance, which will be published in the Federal Register Thursday Jan. 21, reiterates requirements under existing law that school districts must annually certify to their state departments of education that they have “no policy prohibiting participation in constitutionally protected prayer,” officials said. State education departments must have a process for fielding complaints the right to prayer has been violated, and they must report any complaints or lawsuits over school prayer to the federal Education Department, the guidance says.

The guidance also states that student religious groups should have the same access to school facilities as secular groups, which has been in place since 1998, Education Week reports.

The Trump administration will also issue a directive on Thursday that states religiously affiliated groups can get federal grants even if the group is located in a state that prohibits public funding of such groups.

“Those laws, known as Blaine amendments, are the subject of a case on tax-credit scholarships for private schools that will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court next week,” Education Week notes in its report.

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Republican Lawmaker’s Jesus-Focused Prayer Slammed by Dems as ‘Offensive’ and Islamophobic


Reported By Randy DeSoto | Published March 27, 2019 at 12:08pm | Modified March 27, 2019 at 9:40pm

Pennsylvania Democrats, including the state’s governor, chastised a freshman Republican representative for an “offensive” and “Islamophobic” opening prayer at the state capitol in Harrisburg on Monday, during which she mentioned Jesus numerous times.

In her prayer, Rep. Stephanie Borowicz — an associate pastor’s wife representing a district in the center of the Keystone State — also thanked President Donald Trump specifically for “unequivocally” supporting Israel.

The lawmaker began the invocation, “Jesus, I thank you for this privilege Lord of letting me pray. I Jesus am your ambassador here today representing you, the King of kings, the Lord of lords. The great I am.”

Borowicz referenced the tradition of leaders praying for the country, including George Washington at Valley Forge, Abraham Lincoln at Gettysburg, as well as the members of the Continental Congress in Philadelphia who “fasted and prayed for this nation to be founded on Your principles and Your words and Your truths.”

“God forgive us — Jesus — we’ve lost sight of you, we’ve forgotten you, God, in our country, and we’re asking you to forgive us,” she said.

Borowicz then paraphrased the Bible passage 2 Chronicles 7:14, saying, “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek Your face, and turn from their wicked ways, that you’ll heal our land.”

The verse has often been quoted by political and religious leaders, including Ronald Reagan who had his family Bible opened to it when he was sworn as the 40th president of the United States in 1981, CBN News reported. Mike Pence used the same Bible, opened to the same passage when he took the oath as vice president.

Borowicz further prayed, “thank you that we’re blessed because we stand by Israel,” a clear reference to the Bible’s Genesis 12:3.

The representative concluded her invocation: “I claim all these things in the powerful, mighty name of Jesus, the one who, at the name of Jesus, every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess, Jesus, that you are Lord, in Jesus’ name.”

Someone, apparently a representative, yelled out as Borowicz was finishing, prompting Republican House Speaker Mike Turzai, who had looked uncomfortable at various points throughout, to nudge her arm indicating it was time to wrap it up.

Borowicz’s prayer came before Pennsylvania’s first Muslim-American female representative, Movita Johnson-Harrell, was sworn in. Johnson-Harrell recently won a special election to fill a vacant seat for a Philadelphia district.

Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf said on Tuesday that he apologized to Johnson-Harrell for Borowicz’s prayer, Fox News reported.

“I was horrified. I grew up in Pennsylvania,” Wolf said. “Pennsylvania was founded by William Penn on the basis of freedom of conscience. I have a strong spiritual sense. This is not a reflection of the religion I grew up in.”

Johnson-Harrell told reporters she thought pretty much the “entire invocation was offensive,” describing it as a weaponization of Jesus and the Israeli – Palestinian issue.

“It blatantly represented the Islamophobia that exists among some leaders — leaders that are supposed to represent the people,”she added in an interview with the Pennsylvania Capital Star.

Democratic Leader Frank Dermody called Borowicz’s invocation “beneath the dignity of this House,” The Associated Press reported.

Majority Leader Bryan Cutler did not find fault with his Republican colleague.

“I, for one, understand that everybody has sincerely held beliefs and I would never ask any one of us as an individual to go against that,” Cutler said.

Borowicz was unapologetic, according to state house reporter Andrew Bahl.

“That’s how I pray every day,” she said, adding, “Oh no, I don’t apologize ever for praying.”

Michael Geer, president of the Pennsylvania Family Institute, said that individuals offering the opening prayers “should be free to pray as their faith and conscience dictates.” He said he would hope their words would not be censored.

“A Christian praying out loud to Jesus and speaking his name should not be a surprise to anyone, nor viewed as offensive,” Geer said. “From the days of William Penn and Benjamin Franklin, prayer is at the centerpiece of Pennsylvania’s founding and flourishing, and we must never abandon it.”

Harrisburg-based conservative radio talk show host Marc Scaringi agreed.

“State Rep. Stephanie Borowicz’s prayer wasn’t offensive,” he contended. “It was a beautiful invocation for the blessings of Jesus Christ. What’s offensive is Governor’s Wolf’s apology — that he was ‘horrified’ by the prayer.

“Strangely, Wolf invoked Pennsylvania’s founder, William Penn, in rebuke of Borowicz and her prayer. Yet, Penn founded Pennsylvania to be a peaceful refuge for members of all religious beliefs — and yes, that includes Christians too! Pennsylvanians should be horrified by our Governor’s apparent rebuke of the blessing of Jesus Christ.”

Rep. Jason Dawkins, a Muslim lawmaker, opened Tuesday’s Pennsylvania House session by reading from the Quran, prompting applause in the chamber, Fox News reported.

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Randy DeSoto is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book “We Hold These Truths” and screenwriter of the political documentary “I Want Your Money.”

State Demands Christian US Filmmakers Make Same-Sex Films or Face Jail Time


Reported By Randy DeSoto | October 18, 2018 at 1:51pm

A Christian couple who owns a media company is suing the state of Minnesota after being threatened with fines and imprisonment if they refuse to make films involving same-sex marriage.

Carl and Angel Larsen, through their company Telescope Media Group, want to enter the wedding industry, but due to their religious beliefs do not want to create films celebrating same-sex marriages.

Minnesota’s Human Rights Act stipulates that if the owners produce films about traditional Christian marriages between one man and one woman, they must also produce films about unions that violate their Christian views, CBN News reported.

The religious liberty law firm Alliance Defending Freedom, which is representing the Larsens in the suit, said in a Tuesday news release that the couple faces steep fines, including compensatory and punitive damages of up to $25,000, and up to 90 days in prison if they fail to comply with Minnesota’s public accommodation law.

ADF filed suit at the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday challenging the constitutionality of Minnesota’s law, arguing it “illegally controls artistic expression — violating the Larsens’ freedom to choose which messages they will express, and refrain from expressing, through their films.”

In 2017, federal district court Judge John Tunheim, a Clinton appointee, dismissed the Larsens’ suit challenging the application of Minnesota’s Human’s Rights Act in their case.

ADF senior counsel Jeremy Tedesco, who represented the couple at the district court, filed Tuesday’s appeal at the 8th Circuit.

“The government shouldn’t threaten filmmakers with fines and jail time to force them to create films that violate their beliefs,” Tedesco said in a news release announcing the suit.

“Carl and Angel are storytellers — they script, stage, conduct interviews, capture footage, select music, edit and more — all to tell compelling stories through film that promote their religious beliefs,” he added.

ADF successfully sued the state of Colorado on behalf of Christian baker Jack Phillips, securing his right to decline to make custom wedding cakes celebrating same-sex marriages. In a 7-2 ruling, the Supreme Court found Phillips had a legitimate claim “that using his artistic skills to make an expressive statement, a wedding endorsement in his own voice and of his own creation, has a significant First Amendment speech component and implicates his deep and sincere religious beliefs.”

The Court went on to note, “That consideration was compromised, however, by the (Colorado Civil Rights) Commission’s treatment of Phillips’ case, which showed elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs motivating his objection.”

ADF is arguing, like Phillips, the Larsens gladly serve people of all backgrounds, but as creative professionals they decline business which requires them to produce films containing messages they find objectionable. ADF reported that the 8th Circuit received a friend-of-the-court brief from 10 states supporting the Christian filmmakers’ right to artistic expression earlier this year.

The states joining in the brief include: Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and West Virginia.

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Randy DeSoto is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book “We Hold These Truths” and screenwriter of the political documentary “I Want Your Money.”

How Religious Freedom Erodes, One Step at a Time


Religious liberty faces new threats both in the United States and abroad. (Photo: kharps/Getty Images)

Last week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the formation of a new Task Force on Religious Liberty at the Department of Justice. The action came on the heels of a ministerial summit on religious freedom, which explored how religious freedom is under attack around the globe.

At the summit, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Sam Brownback, U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, highlighted the problems that arise when governments try to enforce conformity to a single view of what is sacred. Governments do far better, they argued, to honor every individual’s freedom to determine that for themselves. That is the path to pluralism—and peace.

Increasingly, however, that is the path less traveled. Too many nations are following paths leading to the decline of religious freedom.

That awful journey often begins with the social ostracization of religious minorities. In Saudi Arabia, for example, official textbooks teach students to compare Christians and Jews to dogs and pigs.

The next step economically disenfranchises religious minorities, denying them employment and education. In Egypt, for instance, Coptic Christians face extreme prejudice when looking for work—be it with the police force or the military, or even a professional soccer team.

Next comes the criminalization of minority religious beliefs. In Pakistan, for example, a Catholic woman named Asia Bibi currently sits on death row for allegedly blaspheming Muhammad.

Ultimately, the path away from religious freedom ends in violence, which may come from either the state or civil society groups. Last year in India, Hindu vigilantes killed a 12-year-old Muslim boy for allegedly slaughtering a cow that they consider sacred.

These ugly doings can occur anywhere that activists promote the punishment of nonconformists, the government does not intervene to protect minorities, and the majority of citizens stay silent. And recent developments in America suggest it can happen here.

In Colorado, Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, gladly served gay customers for two decades. But when his religious beliefs led him to decline creating a custom cake to celebrate a same-sex wedding, the state’s civil rights commissioners compared him to a Nazi and slaveholder.

Tim Gill, the multimillionaire Rolling Stone calls the “megadonor behind the LGBTQ rights movement,” announced he would bankroll a push to add sexual orientation to nondiscrimination laws in states across the country. His professed goal: to “punish the wicked,” that is, those who don’t conform to the new cultural orthodoxy.

Indeed, America is moving rapidly from the “social marginalization of nonconformists” stage to the next stage: excluding them from economic opportunities. When hearing the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor seemed to endorse economic disenfranchisement when she told Phillips: “Then don’t participate in weddings.”

In a growing number of cases, firefighters, military pilots, farmers, entertainers, and tech CEOs have lost jobs, promotions, and access to markets because they refused to bow to the new orthodoxy. And at least three states and two cities have terminated the contracts of religious adoption agencies because the agencies believe every child deserves both a mom and a dad.

Those who believe in the value of religious freedom must teach new generations how to defend it. These efforts should be bipartisan and ecumenical, including people from both sides of the same-sex marriage issue.

To be effective, we must defend the right of those with whom we disagree to express their beliefs. At the same time, both government and civil society must oppose demonizing religious minorities, speaking out against the rising volume of anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim acts of violence reported by the Justice Department.

The courts should continue to protect dissent from orthodoxies, be they religious or secular. This includes respecting each individual’s freedom to decide what is sacred to them.

One of the greatest American legal and political traditions is that those on both sides of controversial issues may live out their views. And, while government may have a position on each of these issues, our courts have never forced anyone to affirm those positions in violation of their conscience.

Congress can also help uphold religious freedom—for instance, by passing legislation that protects adoption agencies who believe every child deserves both a mom and a dad and to shield those who hold traditional views on marriage from federal sanctions.

America’s Founders resisted the temptation to determine what is sacred for us and to force conformity to a single orthodoxy. They enshrined religious freedom in our Constitution.

Yet today, that freedom is under assault. All Americans must respond by standing up for one another’s freedoms to think, to speak, and to act according to what each of us finds sacred. This is how to ensure our country stays on the path of religious freedom that leads to peaceful pluralism.

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Emilie Kao is director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation.

Canada’s Supreme Court Relegates Religious Beliefs to Second-Tier Status. America, Be Warned


Reported By Emilie Kao and Spencer McCloy | July 3,

2018 at 2:57pm

Canada’s Supreme Court recently ruled 7-2 against Trinity Western University, prioritizing sexual orientation over the free exercise of religion. This ruling should serve as a warning flag to U.S. citizens. Canada was only nine years ahead of the United States in redefining marriage. If the U.S. does not change direction, we could follow in Canada’s footsteps, sacrificing religious liberty for faux-equality and faux-diversity.

Trinity Western University, in Langley, British Columbia, is a Christian university that hoped to establish a Christian law program. The Law Society of British Columbia refused to grant Trinity Western accreditation, claiming that the university’s community covenant agreement discriminates against LGBT students.

The covenant establishes a Christian community that abstains from violence, acknowledges the inherent worth of every person, prohibits cheating, and bans alcohol. The offending clause in this case is Section 4, titled “Healthy Sexuality.” It states: “Further, according to the Bible, sexual intimacy is reserved for marriage between one man and one woman, and within that marriage bond, it is God’s intention that it be enjoyed as a means for marital intimacy and procreation.”

The dispute over the marriage clause resulted in split rulings in Ontario and British Columbia, forcing the case to the Supreme Court, which decided that the law society possesses “an overarching interest in protecting the values of equality and human rights.”

Although the seven judges in the majority admitted that denying Trinity Western an accredited law school because of its covenant violated its religious freedom, the judges reasoned that the school’s religious belief was of “minor significance” and that the covenant “optional” to the school’s ability to fulfill its purpose. The court decided that any student who attended Trinity Western’s proposed law school would be so influenced by the covenant that they would be rendered unfit for legal practice.

The two dissenting judges argued that preventing Trinity Western from forming an accredited law school would undermine true diversity in the public square, contrary to the Law Society of British Columbia’s stated mission. They rightly stated, “The purpose of TWU’s admissions policy is not to exclude LGBTQ persons, or anybody else, but to establish a code of conduct which ensures the vitality of its religious community.”

Instead of recognizing that religious liberty should protect Trinity Western’s right to build a community that reflects its religious beliefs, the Supreme Court relegated religious freedom and religious students to second-tier status.

As Brett Harvey, senior counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom, notes, the U.S. Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms are inherently different. Whereas the U.S. Constitution places religious freedom in a pre-eminent position among rights, Canada’s Charter does not secure rights at all. Instead, as Harvey points out, it merely acts as a set of “guidelines” that judges interpret, based on their preferences.

The judges who ruled against Trinity Western did so in the name of “diversity.” In reality, the decision stifles true diversity, creating a counterfeit diversity that attacks differences of thought and religious conviction. In the name of this faux-diversity, Canada has trampled religious freedom and pushed religious believers to the outskirts of the public square unless they conform to the state’s view of sexuality.

All citizens lose when the government restricts the number of choices in the marketplace of ideas. The practical effect of Canada’s so-called “diversity is economic discrimination against those who hold religious convictions that support marriage between one man and one woman.

Students from Christian schools like Trinity Western who are exceptionally qualified for legal practice will be forced to choose between their dreams of practicing law or their religious beliefs. They won’t be allowed to enjoy both.

The Trinity Western case is strikingly similar to recent cases in the U.S. court system. Fortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission allowed Christian baker Jack Phillips to work in his chosen profession without sacrificing his beliefs.  But florists, photographers, videographers, and people who work outside the wedding industry face the same cultural tide that led to the abridgment of Trinity Western’s religious freedom.

Lawyers in the U.S. face a similar threat. Like the Law Society of British Columbia in Canada, the American Bar Association (ABA) is the governing body that accredits law schools and sets ethics standards for practicing lawyers. Like in Canada, the ABA passed Model Rule 8.4(g) in the name of protecting equality and diversity, but it will actually function as a speech code.

As Amy E. Swearer, a legal-policy analyst with the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation, warned American law students, the rule could become a tool to discipline lawyers who disagree with the ABA’s views on sexuality and the family.

The U.S. Constitution accords a unique status to religious freedom, but the specter of Trinity Western should give all Americans pause. Voters, legislators, and judges should heed the signal from our neighbor to the north that in the wake of marriage redefinition, religious freedom must be robustly protected to ensure that true diversity of thought flourishes in the public square.

Emilie Kao is director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation.

Spencer McCloy is a member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation.

A version of this Op-Ed previously appeared on The Daily Signal website under the headline, “Canada’s Supreme Court Relegates Religious Beliefs to Second-Tier Status. America, Be Warned.”

Former Trump Enemy Ted Cruz Pushes 7 Major Trump Victories for Faith, Family and Life



Reported By Joshua Gill | June 7, 2018 at 2:42pm

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournal.com/former-trump-enemy-ted-cruz-pushes-7-major-trump-victories-for-faith-family-and-life/

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas praised the Trump administration Thursday for seven major victories he said it accomplished “for faith, for family — for the values that we share.” Cruz made the remarks at the 2018 Road to Majority conference hosted by the Faith & Freedom Coalition.

He lauded the current presidential administration for making significant advances for the protection of religious liberty, individual rights concerning education and family, the defense of the unborn and foreign policy that reversed Obama-era deals.

“Let’s start with number one — judges,” Cruz said. “Principled, constitutionalist judges.”

Cruz mentioned the Trump administration’s victory concerning the nation’s courts with the appointment of Justice Neil Gorsuch, as well as the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in the Colorado bakery case.

“The so-called Colorado Civil Rights Commission demonstrated an antipathy, an animosity to faith that was visceral,” Cruz said. The Supreme Court, however, ruled that “you cannot discriminate against religious faith,” he added, instead of ruling they must be forced to violate their consciences.

“That is not narrow,” Cruz added. “That is a bedrock principle of our First Amendment and of our nation.”

“A second victory concerns life,” Cruz continued, lauding the Trump administration’s “return of the Mexico City rules,” which prevented the U.S. from providing foreign aid to fund abortions in other countries.

Other facets of the administration’s victory for life, according to Cruz, include the new Health and Human Services rules preventing tax funding for health clinics that provide abortions, as well as the dismissal of the litigation against the Little Sisters of the Poor and the repeal of the “abhorrent so-called contraceptive mandate in Obamacare.”

“Here’s a really good rule of thumb,” Cruz said. “If you’re litigating against nuns, you’ve probably done something wrong. It’s a wonderfully reliable checklist.”

The third victory for Cruz was the historic tax cut Congress passed in December, which he said provided more money for the majority of American citizens by “cutting taxes on small businesses, cutting taxes on farmers, cutting taxes on families.”

Cruz then advocated for the implementation of a flat tax and declared Americans “should abolish the IRS.”

The Trump administration scored a fourth victory, according to Cruz, with the repeal of the Obamacare individual mandate. He acknowledged, however, that the repeal of the Affordable Care Act was “the Republican Party’s biggest unkept promise” and urged the party to keep fighting for that outcome.

The final three victories Cruz said the Trump administration achieved for the nation and its values were the passage of “school choice” legislation, Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and Trump’s “right decision to withdraw from the disastrous Obama Iran nuclear deal.”

“Seven victories and more to come,” Cruz said in closing.

A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Christian Baker Who Refused To Bake Cake for Same-Sex Wedding



disclaimerReported By Jack Davis | June 4, 2018 at 8:19am

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that a Christian Colorado baker cannot be forced to make a cake for a same-sex marriage when the ceremony violates his religious principles.praise-the-lord-png

Monday’s 7-2 decision reversed a Colorado court’s ruling against baker Jack Phillips, who in 2012 refused to bake a cake for gay couple Charlie Craig and David Mullins. The decision focused on the initial ruling against Phillips from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, and left untouched the broader issue of whether professionals who oppose same-sex marriage can be compelled to provide goods and services for those ceremonies, USA Today reported.

“The outcome of cases like this in other circumstances must await further elaboration in the courts,” the majority opinion said, noting the broader battle in which this case was one part. “These disputes must be resolved with tolerance, without undue disrespect to sincere religious beliefs, and without subjecting gay persons to indignities when they seek goods and services in an open market.”

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority decision, while Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor dissented.

“The laws and the Constitution can, and in some instances must, protect gay persons and gay couples in the exercise of their civil rights, but religious and philosophical objections to gay marriage are protected views and in some instances protected forms of expression,” Kennedy wrote, according to The Hill.

“While it is unexceptional that Colorado law can protect gay persons in acquiring products and services on the same terms and conditions as are offered to other member of the public, the law must be applied in a manner that is neutral toward religion.”

The case presented “difficult questions as to the proper reconciliation of at least two principles. The first is the authority of a State and its governmental entities to protect the rights and dignity of gay persons who are, or wish to be, married but who face discrimination when they seek goods or services,” Kennedy wrote.

“The second is the right of all persons to exercise fundamental freedoms under the First Amendment,” he wrote. 

Kennedy said Colorado failed that test.

“Whatever the confluence of speech and free exercise principles might be in some cases, the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s consideration of this case was inconsistent with the State’s obligation of religious neutrality. The reason and motive for the baker’s refusal were based on his sincere religious beliefs and convictions,” Kennedy wrote.

Kennedy noted that the case does represent a collision of rights, according to The Washington Post.

“The Court’s precedents make clear that the baker, in his capacity as the owner of a business serving the public, might have his right to the free exercise of religion limited by generally applicable laws, he wrote. “Still, the delicate question of when the free exercise of his religion must yield to an otherwise valid exercise of state power needed to be determined in an adjudication in which religious hostility on the part of the State itself would not be a factor in the balance the State sought to reach. That requirement, however, was not met here.”

Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan voted with the majority along with Justices Kennedy, Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, as well as Chief Justice John Roberts.

Phillips had lost every round of his lengthy legal fight until Monday. Phillips said the question was not about the customers but rather about violating his own principles.

“It’s not about turning away these customers, it’s about doing a cake for an event — a religious sacred event — that conflicts with my conscience,” he said, according to Fox News.

The Trump administration supported Phillips’ legal claims.
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Dem Lawmakers Move To Restrict Christians’ Right To Oppose Homosexuality



disclaimerReported By Cillian Zeal | May 29, 2018 at 11:13am

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournal.com/ct/dem-lawmakers-move-to-restrict-christians-right-to-oppose-homosexuality/

A new bill being proposed by Democrats would amend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act from “being used to justify discrimination against people, including gay, lesbian and transgender citizens,” The Washington Post reports, leading to fears that religious organizations could be restricted from opposing homosexuality.

Church under attackThe new law would be called the Do No Harm Act, and its purported aim is to amend the 25-year-old RFRA so that religious injunctions on homosexuality could not be considered under it.

“The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, commonly referred to as RFRA, was popular among  lawmakers in both parties when it was enacted in 1993. Initially, it was usually referenced in cases involving practitioners of minority religions, such as Sikhs and Muslims seeking the right to wear their religious headgear in their driver’s license photos,” The Post reported last Tuesday. 

“But in recent years, it has become a favorite law among conservative Christians, who say that it protects their rights to abstain from practices they disavow.”

The RFRA was part of the legal argument used by Christian-based chain Hobby Lobby when it successfully argued before the Supreme Court that it should not be mandated to provide certain types of contraception to their employees in their health care plans under Obamacare.

The same law is being used by a Christian baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple for their wedding. 

“While our country was founded on the value of religious liberty, that freedom cannot come at the expense of others’ civil rights,” Democrat Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii said in a statement.

The bill is unlikely to pass, given that the GOP controls the House, Senate and 1600 Pennsylvania, but it gives a disturbing glimpse into how the Democrats plan to attack the First Amendment and religion in the courts.

At least speaking as a Christian, the Bible is fairly clear on homosexuality and transgender issues. Whether or not you yourself as a believer choose to follow those strictures is your own choice, but there’s no denying that they are in there and they’re constitutionally-protected.Yes I am a Christian

The Do No Harm Act has zero chance of passing at the moment, but it would arguably be a key initiative that the Democrats would look to pursue were they to regain power, which should worry constitutionally-minded Americans endlessly.

The problems with the Do No Harm Act start with the very name: It is meant to do irreparable harm to religious liberty in this country. Only certain types of religious liberty are now allowed — the ones preordained as being OK by the Democrat Party. 

Keep in mind that the RFRA already doesn’t abrogate the civil rights of any individual. In the Hobby Lobby decision, the court specifically noted that there were other alternatives available to the employees wishing to seek contraception under Obamacare. Rather, the point would be to force religious organizations to provide certain services that go against their belief systems even if other alternatives existed for those services to be fulfilled.

This isn’t a blank check against religious liberty, but it certainly comes close. Could church organizations be forced to fund sex changes or the Catholic church to fund abortions? Could congregations be forced to perform gay weddings? Under the right set of state laws, yes, that could be seen as a legal possibility, no matter what the legitimate beliefs of the religious organization may be.

The great irony here is that those who are proposing it decided to name it the Do No Harm Act because apparently, those who are harmed by it are non-entities in their book.

Rainbow jihad

The religious, inasmuch as they actually believe in their religion and practice it, have of late been met with unalloyed enmity by the Democrats. The idea seems to be that your beliefs in God are perfectly fine, just so long as they don’t get in the way of someone getting contraception in the most expedient manner possible, even if that means violating the First Amendment. 

This is a bill that ought to scare every American, no matter what their belief in God may be.

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Gay Couple Lawyers Up Against Christian Baker, Then Trump Steps in


Reported 

URL of the original posting site: https://conservativetribune.com/gay-couple-lawyers-up/?

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A Christian baker from Colorado received an unexpected blessing from the administration of President Donald Trump last week when the Justice Department filed a brief on his behalf to the Supreme Court, which is slated to hear his religious liberty case upon returning to the bench next month.

For Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips, the trouble started five years ago when he politely refused to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple. Although he only meant to protect his religious beliefs, he wound up triggering a chain reaction of undeserved backlash.

It included death threats from angry activists, character assassinations from the liberal media, a judgment of illegal discrimination from a Colorado civil rights commission and an affirmation of the commission’s ruling by a lower court.

The tide finally began to turn in Phillips’ favor in late June when the Supreme Court agreed to hear his appeal and decide whether he actually discriminated against the gay couple when he refused to bake their cake over his religious objections.

And just on Thursday, he won yet another “huge” victory when Trump’s DOJ filed an amicus brief defending his decision five years earlier to not bake the gay couple’s wedding cake. In the brief, acting Solicitor General Jeffrey B. Wall specifically argued that allowing the lower court’s ruling against Phillips to stand would create a violation of the First Amendment “where public accommodations law compels someone to create expression for a particular person or entity and to participate, literally or figuratively, in a ceremony or other expressive event.”

“When Phillips designs and creates a custom wedding cake for a specific couple and a specific wedding, he plays an active role in enabling that ritual, and he associates himself with the celebratory message conveyed,” he added. “Forcing Phillips to create expression for and participate in a ceremony that violates his sincerely held religious beliefs invades his First Amendment rights.”

This is good. Very good, in fact.

And according to The Washington Times, the DOJ’s surprising decision to file a brief in Phillips’ case “raises the possibility that the government will also ask for time to argue in front of the justices when the case goes for oral argument.”

That would be even better.

During the administration of former President Barack Hussein Obama, a man who loved sitting idly by as Christians were persecuted, the DOJ said nothing about Phillips, instead choosing to allow him to suffer the indignity of being persecuted for his Christian beliefs. But with Trump in the White House, it appears those days are finally behind us. Thank God.

H/T Informed Folks

Supreme Court to Review Case of a Baker Told He Must Bake Gay Wedding Cake


Reported by  Ryan T. Anderson / / June 26, 2017 /

URL of the original posting site: http://dailysignal.com/2017/06/26/supreme-court-review-case-baker-fined-not-baking-gay-wedding-cake/

A lower court ruling had forced Jack Phillips to choose between obeying the government and following his religious beliefs. (Photo: iStock Photos)

Today was a good day for religious freedom at the Supreme Court. In a 7-2 decision, the court upheld religious liberty by saying that a state cannot exclude a church from a public program just because it’s a church. That was the big case at the court.

In a less-noted move, the court also agreed to review (“granted cert” in the legal jargon) a case about religious liberty, free speech, and government coercion to support gay marriage. The case involves Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, and whether he must create wedding cakes for same-sex weddings, even if doing so violates his beliefs. 

The case goes back to 2012, when a same-sex couple received a marriage license in Massachusetts and asked Phillips to bake a cake for a reception back home in Colorado, a state that in 2006 constitutionally defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

Phillips declined to create a wedding cake, citing his faith: “I don’t feel like I should participate in their wedding, and when I do a cake, I feel like I am participating in the ceremony or the event or the celebration that the cake is for,” he said.

The couple later obtained a wedding cake with rainbow-colored filling (illustrating the expressive nature of event cake-baking) from another bakery.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint against Masterpiece Cakeshop with the state, alleging violations of Colorado’s public accommodation law.

Administrative Law Judge Robert N. Spencer ruled against the bakery on Dec. 6, 2013, concluding that Phillips violated the law by declining service to the couple “because of their sexual orientation.”

Phillips objected to this characterization and responded that he would happily sell the couple his baked goods for any number of occasions, but creating a wedding cake would force him to express something that he does not believe, thereby violating his freedom to run his business in accordance with his faith.

Phillips is right. As Sherif Girgis and I explain in our new book from Oxford University Press, “Debating Religious Liberty and Discrimination,” acting on the belief that marriage is the union of husband and wife does not in itself entail “discriminating” on the basis of sexual orientation. Indeed, part of the problem is that liberals are simply calling anything they disagree with “discrimination.”

This overbroad definition of “discrimination” is part of what creates the problems for the free exercise of religion and free speech. And here a pattern holds: Legally coercing professionals serves no serious need, but works serious harms.

Conservative wedding providers are few and dwindling due to market pressures—and most important, they don’t refuse to serve LGBT patrons. In case after case, bakers have had no problem designing cakes for gay customers for every other occasion. It’s just that an exceedingly small number can’t in good conscience use their talents to help celebrate same-sex weddings by baking a cake topped with two grooms or two brides—or, as in this case, with rainbow filling.

Coercing these cultural dissidents has vanishingly small effects on the supply of products for any given couple, but it impinges seriously on particular vendors’ freedoms of speech, conscience, and religion. If any harm remains in leaving these wedding professionals free, it is only the tension we all face in living with people who disagree with us on the most personal matters.

As Girgis and I explain in our new book, America is in a time of transition. The Supreme Court has redefined marriage, and beliefs about human sexuality are changing. Now, the Supreme Court has the chance to protect the right to dissent and the civil liberties of those who speak and act in accord with what Americans had always previously believed about marriage—that it is the union of husband and wife.

Such a ruling would help achieve civil peace amid disagreement. It would protect pluralism and the rights of all Americans, regardless of what faith they may practice.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ryan T. Anderson/

Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D., is the William E. Simon Senior Research Fellow in American Principles and Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation, where he researches and writes about marriage, bioethics, religious liberty and political philosophy. Anderson is the author of several books and his research has been cited by two U.S. Supreme Court justices in two separate cases. Read his Heritage research.

Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoons from TOWNHALL.COM


Meet the New Leader of One of the Biggest Religious Liberty Organizations


waving flagAuthored by Rachel del Guidice / / February 16, 2017

Michael Farris, a veteran of the conservative movement, is the new president of Alliance Defending Freedom. (Photo: Alliance Defending Freedom)

“I am the guy that runs to the fight.”

For Michael Farris, the decision to lead one of the biggest organizations advocating religious liberty was motivated by thinking that threats to religious liberty were reaching a crisis point in America.

“If religious freedom falls, then other rights [will fall],” Farris tells The Daily Signal. “Free speech is going to fall, free press is going to fall, parents’ rights are going to fall.”

Farris has been named the new president, CEO, and general counsel of Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal defense organization launched in 1994 that works to safeguard religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and marriage and family, according to its website.

Farris is no stranger to working for conservative causes. He was the founding president of both the Home School Legal Defense Association, a homeschooling advocate, and Patrick Henry College, a Christian college that promotes classical education.

Former Attorney General Edwin Meese III says he is “excited” about what Farris will do at ADF.

“He has done an outstanding job for the homeschool movement and education,” Meese, who serves as the Ronald Reagan distinguished fellow emeritus at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal in a phone interview. “As an educator and an innovator, he has been in the forefront of the successes in conservatism and building a civil society.”

Michael Farris has worked in the conservative movement since 1982. (Photo: MIKE CARDEW/AKRON BEACON JOURNAL)

 

As president of ADF, Farris says he will defend religious liberty, something over time he had become “more and more concerned about.”

Farris has used his law degree to serve as a constitutional appellate litigator. He has argued before the Supreme Court, eight federal circuit courts, and appellate courts in 13 states. Alliance Defending Freedom has represented Supreme Court cases pertaining to religious liberty, including Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Burwell, which took issue with the Obamacare mandate for employers to provide abortion coverage and abortifacients. ADF won the case.

ADF also represented Barronelle Stutzman’s case at the Washington Supreme Court. She is the owner of a flower shop in Washington state and is facing fines for violating Washington’s anti-discrimination law by declining to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

The organization has additionally represented Kelvin Cochran, a fire chief who said he was dismissed from his job because of his faith. Cochran had written a religious book that included his beliefs about sexual morality.

“Alliance Defending Freedom is leading the fight to ensure that Americans remain free to live their faith, not just inside a church or on holy days, but in all aspects of life, including at work, school, and in the public square,” said Jim DeMint, a former South Carolina senator who now serves as the president of The Heritage Foundation.combined

‘Sitting Silently on the Sidelines … a Bad Idea’

Early in life, Farris developed the belief that he needed to be involved in preserving America’s traditional values.

“I read some articles about the start of the Moral Majority,” Farris said. “And I was very interested in that and really got involved in those days. I saw the evangelical Christians that I had grown up with sitting silently on the sidelines and I knew that was a bad idea.”

Farris graduated from Western Washington University in 1973 with a political science major and received his law degree from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, in 1976. He then moved to the District of Columbia in 1982 to help open the office for Concerned Women for America, an organization that has become the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization. It was through Farris’ work for Beverly LaHaye, the founder of Concerned Women for America, that he became inspired to start the Home School Legal Defense Association, a “nonprofit ministry to defend and advance the constitutional right of parents to direct the education of their children and to protect family freedoms.”

“When I was working for Concerned Women for America, the LaHayes had a television program for awhile and I was there with them at the studio,” Farris said. “One of the episodes was a guy talking about homeschooling. He cornered me … into homeschooling.”

Advocating Homeschooling

Farris said that he went home to talk to his wife, Vickie, about the possibility of homeschooling their children. She agreed, and the couple spent over three decades teaching their 10 children.

“Our youngest now is at [the] University of Virginia getting a physics degree, [and] his next older brother is at Notre Dame getting a Ph.D. in biochemistry,” Farris said.

Had it not been for his decision to homeschool, Farris said he would likely not have started the Home School Legal Defense Association in 1983.

“We started homeschooling, and given what I was doing in the public policy and religious liberty world, I started getting a lot of calls from homeschoolers,” Farris said.

He founded the Home School Legal Defense Association to help unite homeschool families and offer them legal services and a supportive community, anticipating it would work “like a teacher’s union for homeschoolers—that, if they came and attacked one of us, that the whole movement would stand up and fight back.”

‘A Great Coach and Teacher’

As Farris built a community of advocates for homeschoolers, parents began to ask him to recommend Christian colleges with high standards for their children. Not only did parents want a faith-based institution to send their children to, but they also wanted a college that would be intellectually stimulating with a focus on a classical education.

“They wanted [colleges] with real high academics,” Farris said.

Farris sought to meet that demand by founding Patrick Henry College in 2000.

“The first and only major originally was government and so getting people ready for law school, getting people ready for Capitol Hill was essentially the initial mission. But that quickly expanded once we saw all the benefits of the classical foundation, [and] it just blossomed into a whole bunch of other things over time,” Farris said.

Today, Patrick Henry College offers seven majors, including a major in strategic intelligence in national security, journalism, and history.

Farris founded Patrick Henry College in 2011. (Photo: MIKE CARDEW/AKRON BEACON JOURNAL)

Michael Farris founded Patrick Henry College in 2000. (Photo: Mike Cardrew/Akron Beacon Journal)

“Michael Farris was a great coach and teacher,” Megan Compton, a 2015 graduate of Patrick Henry College, told The Daily Signal in a statement.

“He led the school well and whenever he was on campus, he always took time to eat lunch with the students,” Compton said.

Greg Scott, the vice president of media communications for Alliance Defending Freedom, said Farris’  leadership will be well utilized as Alliance Defending Freedom enters “a time of dynamic growth under his leadership.” Scott said Farris’ past has equipped him for his new role.

“Michael has said that he has come here to win, and everything about what he has already accomplished indicates that he is [a] leader more than able to follow through,” Scott said.

Heritage Foundation’s DeMint is also optimistic about what Farris can do.

“ADF is a true American treasure and under the leadership of Michael Farris, it will continue to be an indispensable legal advocacy organization securing victories for our first freedom, as well as the sanctity of life, marriage, and families,” he said.

Farris said he will do all he can to protect religious liberty in his new position.

“When I was approached about applying for ADF …  I just said, ‘I want to do what I can do to save our religious freedom,’” he said. “And leading ADF was about the best possible option to do that.”

church-under-attack

Religious Freedom Advocates Urge Trump to Sign Executive Order


waving flagAuthored by Fred Lucas / / February 03, 2017

URL of the original posting site: http://dailysignal.com/2017/02/03/religious-freedom-advocates-urge-trump-to-sign-executive-order/

“I want to express clearly today to the American people that my administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty in our land,” President Trump said. (Photo: Aude Guerrucci /upi/Newscom)

<!– “I want to express clearly today to the American people that my administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty in our land,” President Trump said. (Photo: Aude Guerrucci
/upi/Newscom)
–>

Conservatives and religious groups are calling on President Donald Trump to stand firm on a draft executive order asserting the federal government recognize religious freedom as not only the right to worship but the right to express one’s religion.

The draft of the executive order, reportedly called “Establishing a Government-Wide Initiative to Respect Religious Freedom,” tells federal agencies to accommodate religious practices “to the greatest extent practicable and permitted by law,” would no longer require religious employers such as Little Sisters of the Poor to violate their beliefs by providing contraception and abortion-inducing drugs to employees, and prohibits penalizing employees because of personal religious views.picture7

But after the draft leaked, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told ABC News on Wednesday, “We do not have plans to sign anything at this time but will let you know when we have any updates.”

The Nation, a liberal magazine, first reported on a leaked version of the draft, prompting some liberal and LGBT groups to attack the order.

Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, wrote:

Let’s make it clear to President Trump: you were not elected by gay activists, you were elected by people of faith (81 percent support among evangelicals and 52 percent among Catholics). Do not throw people of faith under the bus in order to curry favor with LGBT groups and the leftist media …

President Trump seems focused on fixing the so-called Johnson Amendment that prevents pastors from endorsing candidates and preaching about partisan politics. That’s fine as far as it goes, but this is a much smaller concern than protecting actual religious liberty and preventing people from being discriminated against by the government simply because they are pro-marriage, pro-life and live out biblical principles in their daily lives. The Johnson Amendment has never been enforced, not even by President [Barack] Obama who was openly hostile to religious conservatives and is far less of a priority.


Gregory S. Baylor, the senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, a religious liberty legal group, strongly backs the draft order, noting that during the 2016 president campaign, Trump said that the “first priority of my administration will be to preserve and protect our religious liberty.”

Baylor said:

The president appears to be following through on that promise so that all Americans can exercise their constitutionally protected freedoms without fear of being maligned and discriminated against by the cultural and political elites. The executive order being discussed simply reaffirms the American commitment to the First Amendment and requires the government to respect its legal and constitutional obligation to ensure that Americans are free to peacefully live and work consistent with their beliefs without being punished by the government.picture8

Trump reiterated support for religious freedom during his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday.

“I want to express clearly today to the American people that my administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty in our land,” Trump said. “America must forever remain a tolerant society where all faiths are respected, and where all of our citizens can feel safe and secure. We have to feel safe and secure.”picture9

In a commentary earlier this week on The Daily Signal, Ryan T. Anderson, a senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, called for Trump not to give into “fearmongering” from the left. He wrote:

But the president should not cave. He should stand up to the liberal outrage and hostility to ordinary American values that fueled his rise in the first place.

The executive order is good, lawful public policy. And it makes good on several promises then-candidate Trump made to his supporters.

In a statement Friday, Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, said:

It properly recognizes that religion should not be confined to a home or house of worship alone, but to ‘all activities of life,’ such as those that involve social services, education, health care, employment, obtaining ‘grants or contracts,’ or otherwise participating in the ‘public square.’ Religious expression has every right to exist in the public square as do other forms of expression … The free exercise of religion has suffered greatly under the policies and orders of President Obama. I am confident that the Trump administration will protect this first and most fundamental freedom.

picture10

Trump delivers for religious right


waving flagAuthored

Religious conservatives’ gamble on President Trump is paying off.

The last several days have brought a slew of victories for evangelicals, many of whom set aside their reservations about Trump to back him during the presidential campaign.

From the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, to Trump’s affirmation of support for allowing tax-exempt churches to engage in politics, to the appointment of Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. to an education task force, evangelicals are seeing the new president quickly deliver on a number of fronts.

“I never doubted his sincerity or his commitment. There were, obviously, those who did. Not just in the evangelical community or in the faith community, but more broadly,” said Ralph Reed, the chairman of the Faith & Freedom Coalition.

“Certainly even for those doubters, this week has laid any of those concerns to rest.”

Trump, a thrice-married business mogul who once expressed support for abortion rights, hardly fit the mold of a conventional conservative candidate. Some evangelicals were hesitant to fully embrace Trump, particularly after a leaked “Access Hollywood” video showed him bragging about using his celebrity to get away with touching women without their consent. He dismissed the tape as mere “locker room talk.”

Yet Trump won the voting bloc decisively in the election, with 80 percent of white evangelicals supporting him over Hillary Clinton, according to an exit poll conducted by NBC News.

Trump is repaying their support in spades, with promises to repeal the Johnson amendment, which prevents tax-exempt religious organizations from engaging in political activity, and his nomination of a conservative jurist to the Supreme Court.

“I think if you really go back and you look at the campaign, it’s undeniable. He received an astonishing 81 percent of the evangelical vote in no small measure because of ironclad commitments he made that were explicit and unambiguous in areas of policy and personnel,” Reed said.

Religious conservatives in Congress are eager to capitalize on having an ally in the White House. On the same day Trump reaffirmed support for getting rid of the Johnson amendment, Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) introduced legislation to do just that.  While Trump declared he’d “totally destroy” the law, Hice and Scalise’s bill would allow only political activity by tax-exempt religious organizations in limited circumstances, though they would still be banned from giving to campaigns.  Hice told The Hill he expects his bill to come up for a vote in the House sometime in the near future, though a specific timeline hasn’t been finalized.

“We have great momentum,” Hice, a Southern Baptist pastor, said of Trump’s support. “I think that this is going to send a great, positive message to the evangelical community throughout the country that strongly supported him.”

It hasn’t been entirely smooth sailing, however. Trump this week announced he’d uphold an Obama-era executive order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against workers on the basis of sexual orientation.  Former President Obama’s 2014 order stirred fierce debate in the House last year when Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) offered amendments to annual spending bills to ensure the order’s enforcement. Its adoption caused one spending bill to collapse on the floor, in large part because of Republicans who opposed the amendment.

Trump, the first GOP presidential candidate to mention the LGBTQ community at a party nominating convention, made a point of emphasizing his support for gay rights when announcing he’d keep Obama’s order in place.

“President Trump continues to be respectful and supportive of LGBTQ rights, just as he was throughout the election,” the White House said in a statement.

Conservatives expressed disappointment in Trump’s move, though they are still hopeful he will sign an executive order to ban retaliation against religious groups and businesses opposed to gay marriage.

“Trump can and should protect all Americans from violence and oppression, but he should not go along with Obama’s policies of elevating ‘sexual orientation and gender identity’ to a protected class,” Heritage Foundation senior research fellow Ryan Anderson wrote.

But it’s Trump’s selection of Gorsuch for the Supreme Court that has generated the most excitement among religious conservatives.  One of Gorsuch’s most notable rulings was siding with Hobby Lobby and the Little Sisters of the Poor in 2013, when they challenged a provision in the healthcare law requiring them to include contraceptive coverage in their employees’ insurance plans. The Supreme Court eventually ruled in a 5-4 decision a year later that closely held for-profit corporations should be exempted for the contraceptive mandate if its owners have religious objections.

“Things that he promised, he followed through on. The biggest one being this past week with the Supreme Court,” said Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), another Southern Baptist pastor serving in Congress.

“I mean, when you look at that from all rounds and all sides, especially from the professional conservative point of view, the court pick was the one that I think helped voters come through [for] Trump.”

kick-em-out-of-office

Washington AG Claims that Religious Expression Must Remain Inside the Person


waving flagAuthored By Michael Ware November 18, 2016

URL of the original posting site: http://constitution.com/washington-ag-claims-religious-expression-must-remain-inside-person/

We have all lived under a delusion. Many if not all Americans CP 01thought that our First Amendment Right to freedom of religion covered the exercise of religion.

Apparently, we have all been wrong. Our freedom of religious expression must be contained within ourselves, and this freedom cuts off once you have a business.

We have found this to be the case as Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson argued his case before the Washington State Supreme Court. He was defending the verdict of the law suit against florist Baronelle Stutzman.

Christian News reports

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson told the court that Baronelle Stutzman of Arlene’s Flowers may believe what she wishes in her heart and mind, but cannot live out her convictions when it comes to a public business.

“Ms. Stutzman for her religious expression is free to believe what she wishes,” he argued. “But when she engages in public accommodations and avails herself of the protections and benefits that come with being a business, there are of course responsibilities that flow from that.”words of another christian hater

Would this mean that a Muslim restaurant owner must sell pork if a customer wanted a Cuban sandwich? What about a Jewish deli? Would they be required to slaughter a pig if a customer asked?

No, this is foolish.

This same Attorney General would demand the opposite he has demanded of Stutzman. He would stand and say that this was an infringement of the Jew’s and the Muslim’s rights.

The point that is at issue is the fact that the left, including Ferguson, wants to punish those who disagree with them on this issue. Lawsuits are a means of coercion. It is the first step in moral and ethical conformity. You believe what they say, or you pay the price.

What’s next?free-speech definition-of-terms

House Panel Set To Consider Law Protecting Religious Americans From Discrimination


waving flagAuthored by Randy DeSoto June 30, 2016

Over a year after it was introduced, the First Amendment Defense Act, designed to protect Americans from being discriminated against by the federal government based on their religious beliefs, will soon get a hearing in the House of Representatives. The Daily Signal reports that the hearing is set for July 12 in the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.Happy Happy Joy Joy

The proposed legislation, H.R. 2802, prohibits;

“The federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that:

(1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or

(2) sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.”

 

H.R. 2802 lists specific discriminatory acts the federal government may not take, including:

  • Altering the federal tax treatment of, cause any tax, penalty, or payment to be assessed against, or deny, delay or revoke certain tax exemptions of any such person.

  • Disallowing a deduction of any charitable contribution made to or by such person.

  • Withholding, reducing, excluding, terminating, or otherwise denying any federal grant, contract, subcontract, cooperative agreement, loan, license, certification, accreditation, employment or similar position or status from or to such person.

  • Withholding, reducing, excluding, terminating or otherwise denying any benefit under a federal benefit program.

 

The bill currently has 171 co-sponsors, all of whom are Republican, save Rep. Daniel Lipsinski, D-Ill.

Dan Holler, with the conservative advocacy group Heritage Action for America, is encouraged that the committee is finally moving forward with a hearing and hopes the legislation will now be expedited. “Given the bill’s broad support, both on the committee and within the Republican conference as a whole, there is no reason for delay,” he said.

Sarah Warbelow, legal director for the pro-LGBT Human Rights Campaign, said of the bill when it was introduced, “Once again, House Republicans are pursuing an extreme agenda that is designed to harm LGBT families under the guise of religious freedom. The right to believe is fundamental. The right to use taxpayer dollars to discriminate is not.” Leftist Propagandist

Clearly, the organization would not be willing to accept the federal government denying a businesses or individuals contracts or tax benefits because they believed in or advocated for LGBT issues; however, it is supportive of allowing the federal government to do just that to people of faith.

A related issue came up in the House of Representatives in May when Rep. Sean Maloney, D-N.Y., offered legislation seeking to codify an executive order by President Obama barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers, with no exception for those with sincerely held religious beliefs.

The amendment passed with 40 Republicans joining the Democrats in a 223-195 win for Obama; however, the overall bill it was attached to was soundly defeated, so the amendment did not become law.

H.R. 2802 may be able to garner broader support because it zeroes in on specific discriminatory acts by the federal government against religious Americans. Liberal objections to religious liberty measures passed in certain states in recent years have centered on concerns that business owners, based on their religious beliefs, would be allowed to discriminate against LGBT customers.

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How the Gay Mafia Has Pushed the American Christian Into a Corner


waving flagBy Rob Knowles March 29, 2016

Since being introduced earlier this year, Georgia’s “religious protection” bill has has faced intense opposition from the loudest voices in the room, namely Hollywood elites, and liberal activists, who have threatened to economically boycott the state. Monday, quasi-Republican Governor Nathan Deal vetoed the legislation.

HB 757, aimed at protecting those who hold a sincere religious belief concerning same-sex marriage, wasn’t quite as clear as it should have been with regard to its definition of what constitutes a “religious institution.” However, all it would have taken was a few tweaks to craft a tighter piece of legislation.

That being said, the bill was designed to protect, not to enforce; it was a shield, not a sword. The activists didn’t see it that way.

Many referred to the legislation as an “anti-LGBT” bill, saying it would allow people to be fired for being gay. This isn’t the case per se. The pertinent text regarding the firing of employees whose behavior doesn’t line up with one’s religious beliefs reads:

“Except as provide by the Constitution of this state or the United States or federal law, no faith based organization shall be required to hire or retain as an employee any person whose religious beliefs or practices or lack of either are not in accord with the faith based organization’s sincerely held religious belief as demonstrated by practice, expression, or clearly articulated tenet of faith.”CP 01

For the purposes of the bill, the term “faith based organization” means:

“…a church, a religious school, an association or convention of churches, a convention mission agency, or an integrated auxiliary of a church or convention or association of churches when such entity is qualified as an exempt religious organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 as amended.”

So if someone works for a church or a Christian school and was living a lifestyle completely contrary to the teaching of the bible, the organizations would have been allowed to let them go. This is different from Missouri’s proposed bill, which protects Christian owned participatory businesses from similar discrimination.

This is the story in a nutshell. People, in good conscience, created a bill designed to protect religious organization from the increasingly litigious left. Hollywood, as well as every liberal activist this side of the Mississippi, freaked out. This placed enough pressure on Governor Deal to back down like an absolute coward. Big Gay Hate Machine

You may not know it, but we’re in a fight for the standing of the faithful. Over the last few years, multiple Christian-owned businesses have been decimated by the gay mafia.

In 2006, photographer Elaine Huguenin and her husband informed a lesbian couple that they only photographed “traditional weddings.” Despite the couple finding another wedding photographer, they filed a lawsuit anyway-and won.

Huguenin appealed, but according to The Washington Times:

“The U.S. Supreme Court declined her request for an appeal in 2014, leaving Ms. Huguenin with a $6,637.94 bill for the attorneys’ fees of Vanessa Willock, the woman who filed the complaint with the state Human Rights Commission.”Gaystopo logo

When a gay couple asked Washington state florist Barronelle Stutzman to participate in their wedding, Stutzman told them she couldn’t because it violated her religious beliefs. The couple sued, and won.

The Washington Times reports:

“The judge fined her $1,000 plus $1 to resolve the state’s case against her and ordered her to make sure any goods available for sale for opposite-sex couples were available to same-sex couples…Mrs. Stutzman’s attorneys at the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) believe that these damages could bankrupt her business and wipe out her assets and cp 11retirement.”

The Washington state Supreme Court has decided to hear the case.

Cynthia and Robert Gifford used to host weddings and receptions on their New York farm, but after being sued by a lesbian couple for refusing to host their wedding, they were fined $13,000. The Gifford’s even said they would host the reception, just not the wedding, as it violated their Christian beliefs. It wasn’t enough to satisfy the couple.

According to The Blaze, Cynthia and Robert Gifford have decided to stop holding wedding ceremonies on their property following the lawsuit.

This is just in America, by the way. It’s even worse abroad.

In 2013, Rob Hughes was arrested for street preaching in Essex. He was detained for 11 hours, interrogated and released with $3,800 in expenses and legal fees. That same year, Tony Miano met a similar fate. After street preaching, he was arrested and detained for 6 hours. This is all because of section five of the U.K.’s Public Order Act of 1986, which reads:

“A person is guilty of an offense if he uses threatening, abusive or insulting words or behavior, or disorderly behavior…within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress thereby.”Militent Radical liberalism socialism

We’re reaching a point in American society where religious freedom will be tested, and put under intense pressure. CombinedThey keep telling us that they won’t go after churches, but I know how this works. Once the glitter ball gets a’rolling, the gay mafia won’t stop. As we saw with photographer Elaine Huguenin, it doesn’t matter if there are other accommodations, the lesbian couple sued anyway.

The common argument goes like this: What if there aren’t any other caterers or bakeries in town? This is similar to the “life of the mother” argument from pro-abortionists. They take a minuscule exception, and use it as the prime model for the whole. It’s just a clever way taking a bat to religious freedom.

The left is full of hate; they hate like it’s their job. This hate cannot be contained for very long. It will expand until we begin to look like England. Christians will be arrested for reading the bible aloud on the street. We’re lucky that we have the First Amendment, but so long as activist judges are in control, it offers little comfort. After our freedoms are eroded, American Christians will face a choice they’ve been lucky enough to avoid in modern times: Compliance or Resistance?

Just wait. They tell us we’ll be fine; they tell us they won’t come after our churches, our religious schools, etc, but it’s coming down the pike. Hate is never satiated. They won’t stop until religious faith is completely and utterly gutted.

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Number ONE Socialism in America Story: “Something Sickening Was Just Done To Christian Bakers Who Refused To Make Lesbian Wedding Cake”


Reported by Melody Dareing December 30, 2015

URL of the original posting site: http://www.westernjournalism.com/something-sickening-was-just-done-to-christian-bakers-who-refused-to-make-lesbian-wedding-cake/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=ConservativeHeadlinesEmail&utm_campaign=PM1&utm_content=2015-12-30

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Tyranney AlertIt was not enough for bakery shop owners Melissa and Aaron Klein to pay more than $136,000 fine to the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries. The state has now wiped out all cash from all their bank accounts too – and did it right before Christmas.

Melissa Klein said was checking on their three bank accounts when she found out the government took every penny. The money was even taken from a separate account the couple uses to keep their church tithe. The amount totaled around $7,000.

“It was like my breath was taken away,” Melissa Klein said in a telephone interview. “I panicked. Everything was gone.”

The couple, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, faced the wrath of the state in 2013 after they would not bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple. While the Kleins will bake cakes for homosexuals for other events, like birthdays, Aaron Klein told the couple they could not support a lesbian commitment ceremony because of their Christian beliefs about marriage. Same-sex marriage was not yet legal in Oregon at the time. The couple held a commitment ceremony in June 2013 and were legally married on May 23, 2014, four days after same-sex marriage was legalized in Oregon.

Even though same-sex marriage was not yet legal in the state, the Kleins were hauled before the bureau on discrimination claims under the state’s public accommodations law. The government then ordered them to pay $136,927.07 judgment for causing “emotional suffering.” They paid it in full to avoid a state-mandated nine percent interest penalty, according to their attorney. The money was given to the Kleins through donations.

“The least expensive option to stay in compliance with the law was to pay the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries funds that will be kept in a separate account until they prevail in their court appeal,” said attorney Tyler Smith in a prepared statement regarding the case.

The couple had to shutter their retail shop and now work out of their home. They were also slapped with a gag order prohibiting them from speaking publicly about their decision to refuse baking a wedding cake for same-sex marriages.

Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian said in a 2013 interview that he was not trying to shut Sweet Cakes by Melissa down. He wanted them to change their views. “The goal is never to shut down a business. The goal is to rehabilitate.”Picture2

pure socialismStill, closing the business and issuing a gag order was not enough for Avakian, who actively supports gay rights in his social media posts and public comments. He authorized the move to wipe out the Kleins’ bank accounts, even the one meant for the church.

“We had three accounts,” Mrs. Klein said. “I have one account that’s labeled, ‘God’s money’ – our tithing. They just took it.”

The Kleins’ case is on appeal and Smith said they would continue to fight it even if it means taking it to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“Aaron and Melissa will continue to work to ensure that every American has the First Amendment right to express their faith-based beliefs, and to conduct their daily affairs according to their conscience,” Smith said.

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Feds go to bat for Muslim truckers fired for refusing to do their jobs


star transport

Last month, it was a Muslim flight attendant who sued her airline after it suspended her for refusing to serve booze. This month it’s two Muslim truck drivers, except in this case, handling booze — which is forbidden under Islamic law — was pretty much their entire job description.

The pair, Mahad Abass Mohamed and Abdkiarim Hassan Bulshale, had the backing of the federal government in their religious discrimination lawsuit against their former employer, who rightfully terminated them for refusing to make beer deliveries.Picture1

The Washington Examiner notes that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission won $240,000 in damages to the former drivers, both of Somali heritage, who were fired in 2009.

The EEOC said that Star Transport Inc., a trucking company based in Morton, Ill., violated their religious rights by refusing to accommodate their objections to delivering alcoholic beverages.

“EEOC is proud to support the rights of workers to equal treatment in the workplace without having to sacrifice their religious beliefs or practices,” EEOC General Counsel David Lopez announced Thursday. “This is fundamental to the American principles of religious freedom and tolerance.”

The EEOC argued that Star Transport could have easily reassigned the men to other jobs, but the reverse argument — that Mohamed and Bulshale could have just as easily sought employment in an area that doesn’t compromise their religious principles — is no less valid.

The jury awarded Mohamed and Bulshale $20,000 each in compensatory damages and $100,000 each in punitive damages. The judge awarded each about $1,500 in back pay.

Bulshale said following the judgment, “This case makes me proud to be American.” Really? What would he know about that?

4 Supremes alert America: ‘Trouble is coming’


Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts

America needs to prepare for a major governmental assault on religious liberty in the wake of the Supreme Court’s marriage ruling, but those standing against the tide can find plenty of inspiration from those who pioneered the concept of religious freedom at the American founding.

Michael Farris is co-founder of the Home School Legal Defense Association and author of “The History of Religious Liberty.” The book details the fierce fight for the religious freedom provisions that eventually emerged in the First Amendment to the Constitution.

Farris said history is critical to understand in the wake of the marriage decision and the brand new threats to liberty being advocated on the political left.

The day after the Obergefell v. Hodges decision was handed down, Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wisc., told MSNBC she believed religious liberty was a much narrower concept than has been understood for centuries. “Certainly the First Amendment says that in institutions of faith that there is absolute power to, you know, to observe deeply held religious beliefs,” Baldwin said. “But I don’t think it extends far beyond that. We’ve seen the set of arguments play out in issues such as access to contraception.”More Evidence

She added, “Should it be the individual pharmacist whose religious beliefs guides whether a prescription is filled? In this context, they’re talking about expanding this far beyond our churches and synagogues to businesses and individuals across this country. I think there are clear limits that have been set in other contexts, and we ought to abide by those in this new context across America.”What did you say 05.jpg

Michael Farris’ “History of Religious Liberty” is a sweeping literary work that passionately traces the epic history of religious liberty across three centuries, from the turbulent days of medieval Europe to colonial America and the birth pangs of a new nation. 

Farris is dumbfounded at Baldwin’s reading of the First Amendment. “The ignorance of members of Congress and the U.S. Senate never ceases to baffle me. How did they get there in the first place without taking a basic civics course? Or maybe they have and they just don’t believe it,” Farris said. “This senator has just simply walked away from not only the text of the Constitution and the meaning of the Constitution but our great American traditions.”

In fact, Farris believes Baldwin’s concept of religious liberty is almost completely backward. “It is an institutional right,” he said. “Churches have religious freedom, but it’s primarily an individual right. The Supreme Court – back in the day when it used to think straight – would say things like it’s not up to the government or the courts to determine which individual within a faith has correctly understood the demands of that faith. You’re allowed to go your own way.”SCOTUS GIANT

In response to the court decision, Govs. Greg Abbott, R-Texas, and Sam Brownback, R-Kansas, have announced their states will vigorously protect the religious liberty of the people. Farris applauds the efforts but warns those policies won’t stop all government intrusion into Americans’ lives or the practices of religious institutions. “That’s a good thing. It limits the areas where a church or a school can expect an attack. But a Christian college residing in one of those states can still expect an attack from the IRS or from the accrediting association or from the U.S. Department of Education if they don’t go along with the federal edicts on this,” said Farris, who warned schools and churches would be wise to protect themselves legally now given the dire warnings offered in the dissents to the Obergefell decision. “We have four justices on the Supreme Court effectively warning all the religious institutions, ‘You better do something about this because trouble’s coming.’ I don’t think that’s an idle speculation,” he said. “That’s about as strong of a warning from about as high a source as you can possibly get.”

&amp;amp;lt;div&amp;amp;gt;Please enable Javascript to watch this video&amp;amp;lt;/div&amp;amp;gt;Farris expects the Religious Freedom Restoration Act to provide federal protection for Christian individuals and organizations, but only to the extent that Justice Anthony Kennedy acknowledges it.

In “The History of Religious Freedom,” Farris details the long, unlikely triumph of religious freedom in America’s founding. Just as in Europe, colonial America witnesses various denominations cracking down on others.

Modern history textbooks credit enlightenment thinking for the emergence of religious liberty in America. To Farris, that’s academic fantasy, cp 11and true scholars have actually debunked that notion. “It’s simply not true,” he said. “I lay out the historical evidence in great detail. One Harvard historian around the 1920s said the evidence that people who are indifferent to religion, that basically is the enlightenment crowd, were the cause of religious liberty is an unsustainable argument. There is simply no evidence for that point.” He added, “It was people who cared very deeply. It was grassroots kinds of Christians fighting establishment kind of Christians who gave us religious liberty for everybody. The battle for religious liberty wasn’t settled on the Mayflower.”

Protections for the free exercise of religion were anything but guaranteed in America. Farris said the colonial government of Virginia teamed with the Anglican Church to punish dissenters as late as the 1770s. In 1776, Virginia’s Declaration of Rights became the first declaration of religious liberty anywhere in the world.

In 1789, Congress approved the Bill of Rights and sent them to the states for approval. That same year, the French Revolution unfolded. The upheaval in the two countries has long been compared, especially as the U.S. moved forward with stability and France subsequently endured the Reign of Terror and the Napoleonic era.

Farris said there are key reasons for the very different results of revolutions rooted in freedom, including America’s much deeper respect for personal religious liberty and vastly different views about the nature of man.

“France believed that man was perfectable and that we could create our own utopia, whereas the American Revolution followed the Christian biblical idea that all men are sinners and that’s why you needed limited government, because you can’t trust any man in government to rule faithfully forever,” he explained.

According to Farris, the greatest parallel between the colonial struggle for religious freedom and today’s cultural battles is where the battle lines are drawn. Religious freedom was not championed by the ruling class. “It was a monumental battle,” he said. “It was the common people, who believed in Jesus, who believed the Bible was the authority for their faith and their life, who really fought the war and won. Many of them paid with their lives.”

Farris said the founding generation should serve as inspiration for the religious freedom fights of this century.

“Common people armed with bravery and faith in God can turn anything around,” he said. “I’ve seen it in my own life through the homeschooling movement. We were outnumbered and outgunned by the teachers’ unions day after day after day. We won battle after battle after battle because (we were) common people armed with the Constitution of the United States and belief in the Word of God.”

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Connecticut Dems dump Thomas Jefferson, urge rest of U.S. to follow suit


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The Connecticut Democratic Party has officially dumped both Thomas Jefferson’s and Andrew Jackson’s names from its annual fundraising dinner due to their ties to slavery. The move was made in response to demands from the state’s chapter of the NAACP.

Each fall, the state party holds a Jefferson-Jackson-Bailey dinner to raise money for the party. Similar Jefferson-Jackson dinners are held by Democrats around the country (the Bailey name is peculiar to Connecticut).

But now the first two names are gone, voted out unanimously by the party’s state board in just a few minutes with almost no discussion, according to the Hartford Courant.

“As members of the Democratic Party, we are proud of our history as the party of inclusion. Democrats have led the way on civil rights, LGBT equality and equal rights for women,” the board’s resolution declared. “It is only fitting that the name of the party’s most visible annual event reflects our dedication to diversity and forward-looking vision.”Picture4

A replacement name will be chosen later.

Jefferson is well-known to most Americans for writing the Declaration of Independence, serving as America’s third president, championing religious freedom, and being one of the nation’s leading intellectuals in its early years. He was also a key figure in the genesis of the Democratic-Republican party, which evolved into the modern Democratic Party, so throughout history Democrats have been happy to claim him as their own.More Evidence

Now, though, Democrats are souring on Jefferson due to his position as a slaveholder, as well as the belief that he fathered children with slave Sally Hemmings.

Andrew Jackson is even more vilified today. While his presidency was a key point in the rise of the “common man” as a major force in American politics, Jackson was also a slaveholder, and his policies toward American Indians have been characterized by some as genocidal.

Calls to change the name grew after the massacre of black churchgoers in Charleston, South Carolina last month.

Party chairman Nick Balletto said he hoped the rest of the country would join Connecticut in rejecting Jefferson’s legacy.

“I wasn’t looking to be a trailblazer or set off a trend that’s going to affect the rest of the country,” Balletto told the Connecticut Post. “Hopefully, they’ll follow suit when they see it’s the right thing to do.” Balletto added that the name simply had to go, because some people were offended by it. “When something offends someone, it’s beyond being politically correct,” Balletto said. “It just causes a need for change.” “You can’t change history, but you don’t have to honor it.”cause of death

This report, by Blake Neff, was cross-posted by arrangement with the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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Outrage! NEA Teachers’ Union to Vote Against RFRA


waving flagAuthored by avatar , on 2 July, 2015 at 17:00

NEA…Says Laws are A “License to Discriminate”

The National Education Association’s annual representative assembly, meeting this week in Orlando, will vote on Friday or Saturday to take a stand against religious freedom in America.

It’s just the latest in radical leftist political action by the nation’s largest union with approximately 3 million members. In many states, teachers are compelled to join the union in order to hold a job, so the NEA is already well acquainted with strong-arm tactics.

New Business Item A, submitted by the NEA Board of Directors itself, states:

“The NEA will develop educational materials for its state affiliates and members about the potential dangers of so-called ‘religious freedom restoration acts’ or RFRAs, which may license individuals and corporations to discriminate on the theory that their religious beliefs require such actions.

The materials will describe the current legal landscape at the federal and state level, provide model state legislative amendments to modify existing laws to prevent such discriminatory applications, provide talking points for advocacy, and link to existing resources for members and state affiliates to use in efforts to prevent the use of such laws as a license to discriminate.”Picture2

An accompanying rationale repeats the charge that First Amendment freedoms are a “license to discriminate,” and that this resolution is part of NEA’s efforts on “social justice.” It was submitted by a Michigan delegate, Paula Herbart, who can be contacted at pherbart@mea.orgTyranney Alert

Go HERE to read resolution online.

ACTION: Call your local school and leave this message: ” I am stunned and heartbroken that the National Education Association believes Americans don’t deserve religious freedom, and that we should be compelled to violate our consciences. How tragic that the millions of dollars in teachers’ dues are funding such anti-American, fascist policies here on Independence Day week-end. I suggest all of the teachers at our school disaffiliate from this destructive organization.”

And be sure to tell all the teachers and parents you know.

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Video Of The Day: Sharpening Your Traditional Marriage Argument


waving flagPosted by Rottdawg — June 29, 2015

URL of the Original Posting Site: http://joeforamerica.com/2015/06/votd-sharpening-your-traditional-marriage-argument

Big Gay Hate Machine

Here are a couple videos that will help strengthen your argument should you be in the traditional marriage camp. The Supremes really let the citizens of America down with their moronic argument supporting same-sex marriage.

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This one here is a bit NSFW, but Christopher Cantwell has a message for all of those that rainbowed up their Facebook profiles in celebration of the SCOTUS decision.

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Leftist Giant called Tyranny

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Freedom of Association Is Burned at the Stake in Indiana


 

by Deroy Murdock April 1, 2015

URL of the Original Posting Site: Http://www.nationalreview.com/article/416257/freedom-association-burned-stake-indiana-deroy-Murdock

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“Are we prepared to handcuff a feminist photographer who won’t take pictures at a strip club?”

The only identifiable victim of Indiana’s new Religious Freedom Restoration Act is the First Amendment’s Freedom of Association clause. Like Joan of Arc, it has been burned at the stake.

In the name of nondiscrimination, Republican governor Mike Pence has surrendered to the angry mobs that erupted like the Sandinistas’ turbinas divinas. Despite RFRA’s similarity to a 22-year-old federal statute and laws in 18 other states, liberal activists and journalists have distorted Indiana’s measure into an alleged anti-gay hit list.https://embed.reembed.com/conservativebyte.com/3lsEru0Rl9hG07r2f51zfi0nhttps://t.reembed.com/3lsEru0Rl9hG07r2f51zfi0n”&gt;Homosexual Bakers refuse to bake antihomosexual cake

It never helps that laws like this one focus solely on the rights of religious people. As vital as religious liberty is, what about the rights of the 25 percent of Americans who have no faith? The safe harbors that these laws attempt to dredge should not, themselves, discriminate against nonbelievers.

The sorts of freedoms shielded by Indiana’s new law — and nearly identical pieces of legislation heralded by the ACLU, signed by President Clinton, and supported by Obama in the Illinois state senate — should be protected for all Americans, be they religious, agnostic, atheist, confused, or otherwise. Freedom of Association belongs to all Americans, via the First Amendment, not only those who happen to be religious.

What if you are an atheist who really objects to gay marriage? Must you still bake cakes for gay weddings, or will pro-shariah Muslim bakers be the only ones who can walk into court and ask to be excused from doing so?

The oft-screamed battle cries of liberals, feminists, and gay-rights activists vividly illustrate the implications of what Pence’s critics demand. If every business in Indiana must do business with everyone who walks through the door because, as Pence said today, “this law does not give anyone the right to discriminate,” then:

  • Do we still respect a woman’s right to choose not to bake a cake for a gay couple?

  • Do we respect a woman’s right to choose not to take photographs at a Christmas party at a men’s club because she is a feminist who deeply loathes all-male establishments?

  • Do we respect the rights of groups of women to choose to enjoy the sisterhood of a women’s club where they need not cope with men?

  • Do we respect the Junior League’s right to choose to remain a female-only group, as it has been since 1901, or must they now accept male members?

  • Do we respect a lesbian bar owner’s right to choose to post a No Men Allowed sign in her window because her customers want to enjoy their all-female company in peace and don’t want to associate there with a bunch of hairy dudes with Adam’s apples, brawny shoulders, testosterone in their veins, and penises in their pants?

  • Do we respect a gay merchant’s decision to tell a heterosexual couple to stop making out inside his club full of gay men who could live without such a spectacle while meeting other gay men? “Bake this!” — Can a gay baker just say no?

  • Do we respect a gay baker’s right to choose not to bake a cake for the Westboro Baptist Church with icing that reads God Hates Fags?

  • Do we respect a fundamentalist Muslim baker’s choice not to bake a cake for a bar mitzvah because she really is not crazy about the Star of David?

  • Do we respect a black jazz band’s choice not to perform at a Ku Klux Klan chapter’s “Negro Minstrel Show”?

  • Do we respect a pro–gun control photographer’s right to choose not to snap pictures at a Sharpshooter of the Year banquet organized by the local chapter of the National Rifle Association?

  • Do we respect a vegan woman’s right to choose not to bake a cake for the Indiana Pork Farmers’ Man of the Year dinner?

  • Do we respect a Jewish calligrapher’s right to choose not to produce hand-written invitations for a Hitler Day brunch organized by a local neo-Nazi group?

If these examples sound absurd, are they really that much crazier than a gay couple’s demand that an evangelical Christian baker produce their wedding cake against her will, when other bakers are eager for their business? Also, it is crucial to remember that behind each of these scenarios lies something deadly serious: a gun.

Government equals force. Its ultimate authority stems from its ability to use coercion or blunt force to deprive lawbreakers of their freedom. Why, ultimately, do people pay their taxes? Funding schools, courts, and atomic submarines has its charms. So does staying out of jail. As George Washington reportedly said: “Government is not reason, it is not eloquence — it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”Master

So, the real question in each of these cases is:

  • Do you support the government’s use of coercive police power — up to and including fines, arrest by armed police officers, and imprisonment — because you reject a woman’s right to choose not to bake a cake for a gay couple? •

  • Do you support the government fining, handcuffing, or incarcerating a gay baker because he refuses to bake a cake that says God Hates Fags?

  • Etc.

In the public sector, the government must administer equal justice under the law and treat all Americans equally. Thus, the anti-gay discrimination of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” deserved to end. Likewise, conservatives such as Ted Olson and I believe that government should not discriminate against gay couples when handing out marriage licenses. (Obviously, other conservatives disagree.)

The private sector, such as it is, is something different. Private individuals on private property should be free to associate with whom and without whom they wish. Just because someone runs a business or is part of a private group or organization does not mean that she surrenders her rights or becomes a mere appendage of government.AMEN

At least that’s what the First Amendment says — such as it is.

Freed of most restraints against government action and populated by citizens increasingly oblivious to this nation’s founding principles, America is slouching into tyranny. Little by little. Day by day. This is incredibly depressing. And to see gay people lead this charge into bondage may be the saddest sight of all.Picture3

Tyrant Obama cropped-freedom-is-not-dictator-friendly.png Imperial President Obama kingobamafingerconstitution-300x204

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor and a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace at Stanford University.

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Religious Freedom on Trial


http://www.tpnn.com/2014/03/25/religious-freedom-on-trial/

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Arguments have begun before the Supreme Court today to determine whether religious freedom in America, under the First Amendment, is guaranteed or not. At the heart of this trial is the mandate by Obamacare requiring businesses that employ 50 employees or more to provide all levels of birth control to its employees and pay for this coverage. This includes not just traditional birth control such as pills and shots to prevent impregnation. It also includes abortifacient drugs, such as the ‘Morning After pill’ that induce abortions after impregnation has occurred.

The suit was brought forth by Hobby Lobby, the arts and crafts store owned by the Green family. The family does not hide their devout Christianity. In fact, service to the Lord by serving others is a part of the identity of Hobby Lobby. In honor of the Lord’s day, every store is closed on Sundays. In addition, their commitment and gratitude to the God is listed on their website.

At Hobby Lobby, we value our customers and employees and are committed to:

  • Honoring the Lord in all we do by operating the company in a manner consistent with biblical principles.
  • Offering our customers exceptional selection and value in the crafts and home decor market.
  • Serving our employees and their families by establishing a work environment and company policies that build character, strengthen individuals and nurture families.
  • Providing a return on the owner’s investment, sharing the Lord’s blessings with our employees, and investing in our community.

We believe that it is by God’s grace and provision that Hobby Lobby has endured. He has been faithful in the past, and we trust Him for our future.

A visit to the ‘Our Company’ section of their website reveals just how ingrained their religious convictions are within all aspects of their business model. Their donations and ministry projects all have one thing in common – a commitment to God and spreading his Word. Organizations such as Oral Roberts University, One Hope, and Every Home for Christ are but some of the organizations to which Hobby Lobby donates and supports.

The company was grown from a $600 start up to a multi-billion dollar corporate entity by David Green who openly gives thanks to God for His blessings and uses Hobby Lobby to spread God’s love and word with a focus on ‘operating the company in a manner consistent with biblical principles.

This strong commitment to God as a company is not something new from Hobby Lobby. They didn’t suddenly shift their business model to be biblically based following the partisan vote by the Democrat party to make Obamacare law. It is, and always has been, a part of who they are.

Complete Message

So, it should come as no surprise that the Green family and the Hobby Lobby corporation would see the Obamacare mandate forcing the company to cover abortion inducing drugs as an attack on their religious freedom. One of their attorneys, Lori Windham with the Becket Fund, had this to say about this case now being argued before the Supreme Court.

This is unquestionably a religious exercise, refusing to pay for something that could take a human life. And so the question here is not whether it’s the Green family or the corporation, both of whom are part of this case. The question is, is this a sincere religious exercise. The answer to that question is yes. So, it ought to be protected.

The left and the leftist media have gone out of their way to distort the reality of Hobby Lobby’s argument framing it as a direct attack on women’s rights in being able to access birth control. However, as previously stated, the objection at the heart of Hobby Lobby’s argument is the company being forced to fund abortions and abortion inducing drugs.

On FOX News with Martha MacCallum this morning, Judge Andrew Napolitano had much to say about this case, including placing blame squarely on the Supreme Court, and Chief Justice John Roberts, for allowing the entire Obamacare plan to go forward based upon the decision that the entire health care plan would levy a tax on you if you did not subscribe to it, rather than a fine. To this, Judge Napolitano said the following:

It really is a bizarre decision in this respect; the government argued it wasn’t a tax and the challengers argued it wasn’t a tax. Yet, the Supreme Court rejected all the arguments before it and found that it was a tax. It’s obvious that this was just a cobbled together compromise by people who otherwise disagree with each other on fundamental jurisprudential views, in order to salvage this legislation. As a result, we have these challenges coming back.

Judge Napolitano also talked about what is at stake with this Supreme Court decision. With government being able to tax whatever it wants, even failure to buy a mandated product or service according to the Supreme Court, can Congress pick and choose to whom or to which entities the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of religious applies.

This is about religious liberty and whether or not Congress can compel corporations to violate religious liberty of the shareholders of those corporations. There are a lot of subsidiary issues. Do corporations have religious liberty or just individuals. Can the owners of the corporation impose their own religious standards on the corporation itself? And, the big picture, can Congress do this to anybody; make you buy a product, contraceptive health care coverage, that goes against the very teaching of your religion from your heart.

This is not just traditional contraception. This is also euthanasia and abortion. It comes in one package in the federal government’s mind that orders the entities that employ 50 or more people to make this available to employees. Now, this is not to say that women are not entitled under the law to choose on their own to have this protection. It’s the flip-side. It’s, are employers free to choose not to pay for this protection if they find it morally and religiously repugnant?

Another favorite argument of the left is that individuals should not be subjected to certain denied coverage simply due to their place of employment. MacCallum played devil’s advocate with this argument. Judge Napolitano had a response to that argument which is, not surprisingly, based on the Constitution.

Martha MacCallum: An employee who exists and works in the United States of America under this law that says that everybody must be covered by a plan that is up to their (government’s) definition of what’s good enough for them should say, “If this is where I want to work, why shouldn’t I be covered by the same description of these plans that everyone else who works in places is covered under?”

Judge Napolitano: And, I’ll give that employee an answer. Because your wish to be covered by contraceptive coverage paid for by your employer is a good that the employer purchases for you. But, the employer’s wish to serve his or her heart and to follow his or her religious beliefs is a right that comes from our humanity and it is expressly given by the First Amendment.

MacCallum: So, you’ve gotta work somewhere else.

Judge: Yes! Or, go out and pay for it yourself or get the federal government, which subsidizes billions in these policies, to pay for it which is probably what will happen if the Supreme Court rules against the federal government. The federal government will offer to subsidize it which means we as taxpayers, you and I and our religious beliefs, with our tax dollars will be subsidizing these policies.

He again placed blame squarely on the Supreme Court for allowing Obamacare, now officially known as the Affordable Care Act, to move forward.

This is an unforeseen consequence of the Supreme Court’s ill-advised decision a year and a half ago, finding all of this constitutional on the grounds that, if you don’t do it, we can tax you and the government can tax anything it wants.

Complete Message

Will religious freedom, constitutionally protected in America by the First Amendment, prevail in America or will the assault on our liberty by an over-bloated big government win? This Supreme Court case will have wide-reaching ramifications on freedom in America if the court once again sides with the federal government and against the Constitution and rights of Americans.

Air Force: Christians’ Religious Speech Not Legally Protected Right


Bret BART

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2014/03/16/Air-Force-Christians-Religious-Speech-Not-Legally-Protected-Right

by 16 Mar 2014

Christians in the U.S. military are being told they must forfeit their First Amendment rights. Bible verses are being erased from cadets’ personal dorm-room white boards, and military lawyers claim that legal protections for religion only pertain to matters such as clothing and growing beards but do not extend to any religious expression such as talking about one’s faith or posting a Bible verse.

Last year Breitbart News broke the story of a campaign by anti-Christian extremists to suppress traditional Christian expression within the U.S. military. There were conflicting stories regarding the possible court martial of service members who share the gospel of Jesus Christ and confirmed reports of military chaplains being officially censored, as well as Bibles temporarily banned from the Walter Reed military hospital.

After these stories went viral on the Internet, Republicans in Congress launched an investigation, then introduced legislation to specify that religious expression is a protected right for men and women serving in uniform. Although President Obama originally threatened to veto the legislation, those protections were signed into law in December 2013.

Now these new protections are being put to their first test. Military officers at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs are saying that the Obama-Hagel Pentagon does not regard these new protections as encompassing religious speech or writing. As such, cadets are not allowed to post Bible verses on their personal white boards in their dorm rooms.Cadet,

This latest incident occurred when a cadet (whose identity we are not disclosing) posted Galatians 2:20 on his personal whiteboard, posted outside his living quarters in a residential dormitory. That verse reads, “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

According to media reports, several people at the academy contacted Mikey Weinstein and the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, the radical anti-Christian group that had been in communication with the Defense Department under President Obama regarding adopting new policies for religious expression in the military. Weinstein claimed that he called the Air Force Academy to complain about the Bible verse and further claims that two hours and nine minutes later, the verse was gone.

Sources quote Weinstein as saying that having this verse on the outside of the dorm room “clearly elevated one religious faith over all others at an already virulently hyper-fundamentalist Christian institution.” He is quoted as adding, “It massively poured fundamentalist Christian gasoline on an already raging out-of-control conflagration of fundamentalist Christian tyranny…”

Contrary to existing reports, Academy personnel did not erase the Bible verse or order the cadet to remove it.

Breitbart News spoke with Mike Berry, an attorney who is director of military affairs with Liberty Institute. Berry traveled to the Academy last week and met with cadets of different religions. These cadets say these personal messages are traditionally allowed on cadets’ whiteboards. A message might ask to meet for a basketball game or root for a favorite sports team. They claim it is a meaningful exercise in which many cadets include spiritual or inspirational quotes, whether Bible verses, a verse from the Quran, or from football legend Vince Lombardi.

Berry exclusively tells Breitbart News:

We met with Col. Paul Barzler, the Air Force Academy Staff Judge Advocate, to find out what really happened and to ask about the Academy’s policy on religious exercise. It turns out that, contrary to Mikey Weinstein’s claims, the cadet may have voluntarily removed the Bible verse from his white board. But I was stunned to find out that, had the cadet not removed the verse, Academy officials would have ordered him to do so. I asked why, and Col. Barzler explained that, because the cadet held a leadership position, it could create the perception that he was forcing his religious beliefs on subordinates. I pointed out that under the Constitution, federal law, and military regulations, cadets have the right to religious exercise. I was shocked when he responded that Air Force policy, from the Pentagon, is that the term “religious exercise” does not include written or verbal speech. [emphasis added]

Berry then reminded the colonel regarding the specific legal protections service members have, from the Constitution itself, to Acts of Congress, to military regulations. He says of the colonel’s response:

He went on to state that the Air Force interprets [Department of Defense] Instruction 1300.07 to only apply to religious grooming and apparel matters, but not writing a [Bible] verse on a white board or even verbally sharing a verse. This means that, under Air Force policy, cadets and airmen are not free to express their religious beliefs through words or writing. This policy appears to come from a March 2013 Air Force JAG memo that interpreted federal law in that way.

Last week, on Mar. 14, 2014, the Air Force Academy issued a press release regarding this situation. It says, “While we swear an oath to Support and Defend the Constitution of the United States, Airmen are also bound by [military policy].” It references Air Force Instruction 1-1, which was adopted several years ago once President Obama took office and is frequently used to suppress religious speech, especially by Christians. The press release then adds that “sometimes we must put the good of the entire unit before the good of any single individual.”

This press release only makes the situation more alarming to a legal analyst. An Air Force policy instruction carries some force of law, but it is trumped by a Defense Department regulation. Those regulations, in turn, are subordinate to federal statutes adopted by Congress, which for over three months now has expressly provided that religious expression is a protected right. All of those must follow the Constitution as the Supreme Law of the Land, where the First Amendment makes both free speech and free exercise of religion fundamental rights for all Americans.

As Berry summarized, “This is a stunning development because it is now clear that the Air Force is interpreting federal law and military regulations in an unlawful way. And it is absolutely shameful because the brave men and women of the U.S. Air Force who make huge sacrifices for our religious freedom are having theirs stripped away.” Hinting at legal action that could be forthcoming, Berry concluded, “This is not only morally wrong, it’s illegal.”

Ken Klukowski is senior legal analyst for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.

Texas Takes Stand: 9 out of 10 Voters Want Obamacare Repealed and Welfare Recipients Drug Tested


FreedomOutpost_Masthead

http://freedomoutpost.com/2014/03/texas-takes-stand-9-10-voters-want-obamacare-repealed-welfare-recipients-drug-tested/#IHyw1WWQQLUQ5XO5.99

Posted by

Just because one part of the country has seemingly lost its mind and is willing to give up their freedom for the promise of more security doesn’t mean everyone is on board.

In Texas, where voters took to the polls Tuesday night, a completely different set of ideas is at play. And if nationwide sentiment is any indication, other conservative and libertarian leaning states will soon follow.

Though only about half of the votes have been tallied so far, the people of Texas have spoken. It’s a roar, in fact. Voters are standing in unison and have overwhelmingly approved a variety of propositions that may well send shivers down the spines of supporters of things like universal health care, rampant welfare dependency, special privileges and gun rights.

The following results speak for themselves.

First on the chopping block is the Patient Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare.  Apparently, 93% of Texans don’t take well to having the federal government mandate what they should or shouldn’t buy with the penalty for non-compliance being IRS harassment and prison time:

The Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare”, should be repealed.

texas-votes-obamacare

REMEMBER, AND NEVER FORGET, AND NEVER LET EVERYONE ELSE FORGET

Only Democrats

Death and Taxes

This one might be a little scary for those folks who spend their lives on their couches smoking weed or mainlining heroin while hard working Americans pay for their dope:

Texas recipients of taxpayer-funded public assistance should be subject to random drug testing as a condition of receiving benefits.

texas-votes-welfare

You’ll never see the U.S. Congress vote for this, because they’re way too special:

All elected officials and their staff should be subject to the same laws, rules, regulations, and ordinances as their constituents.

texas-votes-official

If you’re an anti-gunner this is where you should stop reading:

Texas should support Second Amendment liberties by expanding locations where concealed handgun license-holders may legally carry.

texas-votes-chl

It’s a sad state of affairs when the public has to actually vote on their right to pray in public places. Isn’t that covered by the First Amendment? Just in case it isn’t Texas will make sure you can worship and pray as you see fit:

Texans should be free to express their religious beliefs, including prayer, in public places.

texas-votes-religion

Silly Texans. Didn’t anyone tell you that it’s government, not businesses, that creates jobs and grows the economy?

Texas should abolish the state franchise tax, also known as the margins tax, to encourage business growth.

texas-votes-taxes2

Common sense laws and regulations. What a novel concept.

There’s a reason why Americans all over the country are flocking to Texas in the hopes of finding the American Dream that has been lost in so many other parts of the Union.

About Mac Slavo

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Obama Forces Christians to Violate Faith


http://lastresistance.com/3830/obama-forces-christians-violate-faith/#w2evQGqemsLT2dcg.99

Posted By on Nov 27, 2013

religious freedom matters

Plan B is considered by the Left as birth control—for that matter, so is  late-term abortion–but studies have indicated that many times, Plan B actually  terminates an already fertilized embryo. In that case, the contraceptive is not  in fact birth control, but abortion. Under Obamacare, many Catholic and other  religious businesses are being forced to provide their employees with coverage  for Plan B—something that violates their faith.

According to Fox:

The Supreme Court announced that it will hear  challenges to the mandate from a crafts chain, Hobby Lobby, and a  Mennonite-Owned furniture company, Conestoga Wood. Owners of the companies argue  that by being forced to comply with the federal regulation the feds are  violating their religious beliefs.”

Juan Williams criticizes the argument, saying:

They (Hobby Lobby) are willing to offer  contraceptive services…They object to the morning after pill. This seems to be  Willy Nilly. You’re opening the door to employers saying, well, you know we  don’t like this, but we like that.”

Moreover, this is an obvious violation of religious freedom. That is just  another step in the Leftist agenda against Christianity. Once one religious  freedom is erased, what’s stopping further damage? If religious organizations  are forced to violate their faith even once, or face consequences from the  government, is that not oppression? Is that not a restriction of freedom?

Once the definition of life is blurred even more than it already has been,  and once Christians are forced to obey either the government or their faith,  we’ve lost the moniker of a free society. We have lost our republic.

The following are comments already made about this article:

Juan Williams’ point of view has to be understood.  He sees everything through The Tyrant’s sphincter.  He’s a marxist sycophant.

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I will never deny Jesus Christ

 

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Please people, read HOSANNA-TABOR EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH AND SCHOOL v. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION ET AL… U.S. Supreme Court case, 2010, 9 to zero in favor of religious rights for all of us.  While this case was on a specific issue, the other opinions voiced in the decision expanded these religious rights far more than you might believe.  This is a key win for religious beliefs and practices.

 

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You can bet that Obama would not do something that is against Islam like he does Christians. Obama would  never do something his BFF in the Muslim world don’t like.

 

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DO NOT compromise your faith at any cost because the ones that are asking you to are not believes and will suffer the results of their foolish failure to stand with faith and God!   NO!  they can go to hell but I am sticking to the foundation of faith and the Bible!  Just ignore all that Obama says and does and when someone asks you why tell them you do to agree and  he is against the freedom of America.  If they hear that enough it will finally get back to O and he will might (?) finally get the message we do not want to trash our nation!
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24 million illegal s ignore our laws, so can the whole country!

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Christians need to stand strong against this mandate being enforced because we know there is only one correct answer to when life begins.

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Make muslims participate in o-care………wont happen….they are too delicate….

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Thats right! All or none! Let the geniuses figure something else out. What Obama is saying now is Muslims have religious rights, Christians have none. Kind of lets you know what side hes on, doesn’t it. Not only him but his staff and Congress. We Americans are a sad lot indeed!

 

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It really does not matter what Juan Williams believes, what matters is what the business owners believe.  They have the right to believe that some things are against their religion whether or not you, I or Juan Williams thinks it is logical or otherwise. That’s what the First Amendment is all about.

 

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We lost the republic when we voted the muslim illegal alien in without vetting him.  Thank the cretins in the democrat party and the traitors in the media.

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This is a very good point to make. Many liberal arguments use obfuscation and lump things together when they should not be. Either the statement by the left is ignorant, hasn’t thought it out, or it’s an intentional untrue statement.

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But not Muslims.

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“Religious Freedom Matters!” NO! What matters (at least to Yahweh, God of the Bible) is the First Commandment–Thou shalt have no other gods besides Him!

What’s described in this article is occurring because of the religious freedom, outside the bounds of Christianity and the Bible, provided by the framers via Amendment 1. It is inarguable that had the framers not failed to establish government and society upon Yahweh’s immutable morality and everlasting righteousness as reflected in His perfect law (Psalm 19:7-11), none of this would be occurring. Think about it: Obama wouldn’t even be President today, nor would anyone today in Congress be there to accomplish their dastardly deeds.

“…3. Every problem America faces today can be traced  back to the fact that the framers failed to expressly establish a government  upon Yahweh’s immutable morality as codified in His commandments, statutes, and  judgments. (Would infanticide and sodomy be tolerated, let alone financed by  the government, if Yahweh’s perfect law and altogether righteous judgments were  the law of the land? Would Islam be a looming threat to our peace and security if  the First Amendment had been replaced with the First Commandment? Would Americans  be in nearly as much debt if usury had been outlawed as a form of theft? Would  crime be as rampant if “cruel and unusual punishment” had not been outlawed and criminals were instead punished with Yahweh’s altogether righteous judgments?  Would we be on the fiscal cliff if we were taxed with a flat increase tax  rather than a graduated income tax?)….”

For more, see our Featured Blog Article “5 Reasons the Constitution is Our Cutting-Edge Issue.” Click on my name, then our website, and see our Featured Article near the top of the home page. Then take our Constitution Survey in the right-hand sidebar and receive a free copy of an 85-page book that examines the Constitution by the Bible.

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How about that hope and change?  Well I hope it changes….back to what the framers decided in 1776 !!!

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Since when did Juan Williams understand anything?

 

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“What Juan doesn’t seem to understand is that contraception and Plan B are  altogether different animals.” Juan DOES FULLY understand and that is the evil of his statement and position.  Jesus will judge EVERY IDLE WORD.  Did I just judge him?  No, he has judged himself.  The fact is, I didn’t make him state that lie and I didn’t request or coerce him into making that lie.  He did it on his own.  God will judge us both.  Only the blood of Jesus Christ makes a way out of punishment for BOTH of us.

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Are the Muslims having trouble with this also? If not then this is discrimination! As well as religious  persecution! Haven’t we Americans had enough yet? I guess most Americans do not care what this president does. They will care one day but too late!

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I no longer listen to anything Juan Williams has to say.  When he or Obama come on T.V. I change channels.  That goes for Biden, Holder, Pelosi also.  And the list goes on and on.

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meg Hotnike
JAUAN WILLIAM is a joke ITS LIKE LOOKING AT OVERMIT ON FOX IT is a joke to listen to this person  he is an obsloute idioute like the wel fare reciepts  trying to bring America to her knee s let see if we can change this false gov  lets take it down AS A mericans born in the USA

Craig James and the Loss of Religious Liberty


http://patriotupdate.com/articles/craig-james-loss-religious-liberty/#ehcFlYAUtRaK2uhr.99

Written on Monday, November 18, 2013 by

I have written more than once at this site about the loss of religious  liberty in America.  However, the term religious liberty is a bit of  a misnomer.  It isn’t really religion that is under attack in  America.  It is the Christian religion.  Practitioners of other  religions have experienced no decline in their religious liberty.  They are  free to profess and practice their religions openly and without fear of  harassment.  Ironically, it is Christianity—the religion of America’s  Founding Fathers—that secular humanists and atheists object most strenuously to  and it is Christianity they attack most frequently.  When it comes to the  standing of Christianity in the public square, it’s as if First Amendment was  never adopted.

Evidence of my contention that Christians in America are losing their  religious liberty is everywhere.  The Ten Commandments have been forcibly  removed from courthouses, public prayer has been eliminated before athletic  events, students are harassed or even disciplined for uttering Christian prayers  during graduation ceremonies, military chaplains are being pressured to guard  against offending atheists, secular humanists, and believers in other religions,  public schools have long since disposed of Bible reading and  prayer, and Christianity—the religion of Christ’s love—has even been labeled by  some humanists as a hate group.  Christians in America find themselves  forced to adjust to being treated like lepers in a country that was founded by  Christians and according to Christian principles.  But the latest evidence  that the religious liberty of Christians is on the wane comes from an unexpected  quarter.

Craig James, a former NFL Offensive Player of the Year, was recently fired  from his position as a football analyst for Fox Sports for expressing  Bible-based reservations about same-sex marriage.  What makes this case  especially significant is that James made his offending comment not while  broadcasting football for Fox Sports, but months before he was hired by  Fox.  He made the comment in question while running for the U.S. Senate  from Texas.  In other words, James was fired ex post facto for something he  said in a completely different setting and well before he was an employee of Fox  Sports.

In an interview with WORLD, James recounted what he actually said during his  Senate campaign as follows: “I said marriage is between a man and a woman.   I talked a little bit more about the moral fiber of our country, that we’re on a  slide and we need people who will stand boldly for their beliefs.”  According to James, a Fox Sports spokesperson told the Dallas Morning News that his Biblical beliefs concerning the definition of marriage would not  fly at Fox Sports.  Interestingly, 76 percent of Texans share Craig James  beliefs concerning what constitutes a marriage, and he was running for the  Senate from Texas when he made the now controversial comment.

In an interesting twist, even selected gay activists have spoken out on  James’ behalf.  In his interview with WORLD, James related that he had  received an email from a self-described gay activist who said: “It’s dead wrong  what has happened to you.  The gay community has got to stop bullying  people who have a different opinion.  We’ve got to respect their ability to  hold what’s dear to their hearts.  We want the same tolerance coming our  way.”  This gay activist hit the nail squarely on the head.  When  advocates for the homosexual agenda resort to  bullying those who disagree with them in an attempt to silence opposition, they  put their own rights to free speech at risk.  The First Amendment creates a  two-way street.  If I cannot say things that you disagree with then you  cannot say things that I disagree with. If homosexual advocates continue to try  to silence people like Craig James with bullying tactics, they run the risk of  losing their most important weapon in the battle for the conscience of America:  free speech. With the Constitution, there can be no double standard.  It  either applies to all of us equally or it applies to none of us.

Craig James plans to file a wrongful discharge lawsuit that will be based on  the First Amendment.  He was not fired for anything he said on the  air.  He was not fired for violating any written policies of Fox  Sports.  He was not fired for incompetence.  He was fired ex post  facto for simply responding to a question from a constituent who wanted to know  his views on same-sex marriage. If you would like to let Fox Sports know how you  feel about their questionable termination of Craig James, send an email to: dan.bell@fox.com.  It  is hard to believe that the same network that carries Bill O’Reilly, Sean  Hannity, and other standard bearers for conservative values would take such a  politically correct action at all, much less on an ex post facto  basis.

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