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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.”

<div>Please enable Javascript to watch this video</div>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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Kansas Governor Brownback Issues Order Protecting Beliefs of Clergy About Same-Sex “Marriage”


waving flagWritten by  , Friday, 10 July 2015 

URL of the original posting site: http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/constitution/item/21236-kansas-gov-brownback-issues-order-protecting-beliefs-of-clergy-about-same-sex-marriage

Kansas Governor Brownback Issues Order Protecting Beliefs of Clergy About Same-Sex “Marriage”

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback issued an executive order on July 7 that prohibits the state government from taking any action against any individual clergy, religious leader, or religious organization that “acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman.” The governor said his order protects “Kansas clergy and religious organizations from being forced to participate in activities that violate their sincerely and deeply held beliefs.”

Brownback issued the executive order, entitled “Preservation and Protection of Religious Freedom,” in response to last month’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, mandating recognition of same-sex “marriage” in all 50 states. In the order, he cited the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, Section Seven of the Bill of Rights of the Kansas Constitution, and the Kansas Preservation of Religious Freedom Act (which he signed in 2013), all of which protect the religious liberty of Kansans. He quoted from the latter, which provides that state government shall not “substantially burden a person’s civil right to exercise of religion.”

Building on that legal foundation, Brown noted that “the recent imposition of same sex marriage by the United States Supreme Court poses potential infringements on the civil right of religious liberty” and that “government actions and laws that protect the free exercise of religious beliefs about marriage will encourage private citizens and institutions to demonstrate tolerance for those beliefs and convictions and therefore contribute to a more respectful, diverse, and peaceful society.”burke

Getting down to specifics, Brownback ordered:

The State Government shall not take any discriminatory action against any individual clergy or religious leader on the basis that such individual declines or will decline to perform, solemnize, or facilitate any marriage, based upon or consistent with the individual’s sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction

The four Catholic bishops in Kansas issued a joint statement urging state officials to make the enactment of new legal protections for those who are opposed in conscience to same-sex marriage a top priority in coming months. The bishops praised Brownback’s order and said in a statement: “Generations of Americans have taken freedom of conscience for granted. We, sadly, do not have that luxury anymore.”It HasNever Been About Marriage

Texas Governor Greg Abbott recently issued a similar memo to all agency heads in his state, granting state employees who object on moral grounds to same-sex marriage some protection against the ruling. Abbott’s memo stated: “All state agency heads should ensure that no one acting on behalf of their agency takes any adverse action against any person, as defined in Chapter 311 of the Texas Government Code, on account of the person’s act or refusal to act that is substantially motivated by sincere religious belief.”Big Gay Hate Machine

While orders such as Brownback’s and Abbott’s mitigate some of the most harmful effects of the Supreme Court’s overreaching decision on same-sex “marriage” — about which Justice Samuel Alito said in his dissent, “The Constitution leaves that question to be decided by the people of each State” — they fall far short of other remedies available to the states. One such remedy is nullification, a little-used technique in recent history, but a viable one nevertheless. As Joe Wolverton noted in a recent article for The New American on the prospect of states using nullification to resist the application of Obergefell v. Hodges within their borders:Leftist Giant called Tyranny

Nullification, whether through active acts passed by the legislatures or the simple refusal to obey unconstitutional directives, is the “rightful remedy” for the ill of federal usurpation of authority. Americans committed to the Constitution must walk the fences separating the federal and state governments and they must keep the former from crossing into the territory of the latter.

Wolverton cited no less an authority on the Constitution than Thomas Jefferson to support the legitimacy of nullification, quoting from the Founding Father’s statement in the Kentucky Resolutions:

That the several states who formed that instrument [the Constitution], being sovereign and independent, have the unquestionable right to judge of its infraction; and that a nullification, by those sovereignties, of all unauthorized acts done under colour [sic] of that instrument, is the rightful remedy.

Though nullification is a valid, constitutional option, no state has thus far made an attempt to apply the principal to Obergefell v. Hodges. Granted, it has been only a few weeks since the decision was made, and such matters take time. However, that is all the more reason why serious discussions to consider that possibility should now be taking place.SCOTUS GIANT

One of the strongest statements suggesting nullification came from former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas), who said on Newsmax TV’s The Steve Malzberg Show shortly before the High Court handed down its decision that the states should ignore any Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage. “A ruling by the Supreme Court is nothing but an opinion if the legislative branch and the executive branch do not enforce it,” said DeLay. “Not only that, if the states would just invoke the 10th Amendment and assert their sovereignty, they can defy a ruling by the Supreme Court. It’s in the Constitution. We can tell the court what cases they can hear.”

What DeLay described regarding telling the federal courts which cases they can hear is governed not by the 10th Amendment, which protects the sovereignty of the states, but by Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution, which gives Congress the power to make exceptions to and regulate the jurisdiction of the federal courts. Former Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) attempted to utilize this power when he introduced his We the People Act in 2004 and 2009. The bill, if it had passed, would have removed jurisdiction of federal courts from cases involving the establishment of religion, sexual orientation, abortion, and marriage.

Invoking such power made more practical sense when DeLay mentioned it prior to Obergefell v. Hodges being decided. Since the court has now ruled, it would be difficult to rescind its jurisdiction to decide on marriage cases retroactively. However it is not too late to use the other tool that DeLay recommended, the 10th Amendment, to which Justice Alito alluded when he said, “The Constitution leaves that question to be decided by the people of each State.”

If the decision should be decided by the states, then the states must declare that the power usurped by the Supreme Court in rendering that decision is null. Leftist Giant called Tyranny

Related articles:

Political Leaders Voice Discontent With Supreme Court Marriage Ruling

Catholic Leaders Vow to Stand Against Contraception Mandate, Same-sex Marriage

Texas AG: “Reach of Court’s Opinion Stops at the Door of the First Amendment”

Supreme Court Rubber Stamps Same-sex “Marriage” — Time for Nullification

Rome: Hundreds of Thousands Protest Against Same-sex Unions

Marriage Can’t Be Redefined

Sen. Lee and Rep. Labrador Propose Protection for Religious Liberty

Southern Baptist Leader: Prepare for Civil Disobedience Over Gay Marriage Ruling

As Gov. of Texas, Would Abbott Continue to Stand for States’ Rights?

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