Tag Archives: religious freedom

Marine court-martialed for displaying Biblical verses

Fascists: Claiming “significant damage could be caused by forcing military employees to work in the presence of a religious quotation,” a Marine was court-martialed when she refused to remove the verses displayed at her work place.

The case centers on an incident two years ago, in which Sterling was stationed at Camp Lejune in North Carolina. A devout Christian, she chose to place at her workstation three slips of paper with the words, “No weapon formed against me shall prosper,” a modification of the Bible verse Isaiah 54:17. Sterling taped the Bible verse in three different places to emulate the Holy Trinity, according to her lawyers.

When her immediate supervisor – Staff Sergeant Alexander – saw the verses, she ordered Sterling to remove them, saying that she did not like the tone. Sterling refused, according to her lawyers, citing First Amendment freedoms and the fact that others in her unit were allowed to have personal items in their workstations. The following day, Sterling found the Bible verses in the garbage. She then reprinted and posted the verses, but found them in the trash again the next day.

On February 1, 2014, Sterling was court-martialed.

She lost the case, but is now appealing to the military’s highest court.

The absurdity of this knows no bounds. No one ever complained about the verses. More importantly, it is her right to express them, even as a display.

Fund-raising campaign to help bakery threatened by gay fascists

Defiance: The Colorado baker who is threatened with bankruptcy and even psychatric evaluation because he refuses to bake same-sex wedding cakes due to his religious beliefs has begun a fund-raising campaign to support his fight.

There are those who think I am being unkind by describing the attackers of this baker as fascists. Well, consider this tidbit from the above story:

He declined to provide a wedding cake for a gay couple in July 2012, citing his Christian beliefs, after which the bakery in Lakewood, Colorado, became the target of protests and angry phone calls. “The calls were so vile, Jack would not allow the employees to answer the phone for weeks. The second day, a caller threatened to kill Jack as well as anyone in the bakery,” said the Continue to Give write-up.

It is important to note that no one is oppressing any homosexuals here. They are still free to practice their lifestyle. The only one being oppressed is the Christian, who is being threatened and denied the right to practice his lifestyle.

The future roadmap of religious persecution in America

The article describes the inevitable legal consequences of the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage. Some key quotes:

The first attacks will be on small churches that don’t have the wherewithal to mount a legal defense against the IRS and against civil lawsuits. They will be confronted with a loss of their tax exempt status and the personal bankruptcy of their corporate officers if they do not allow homosexual weddings. The effect this will have on small congregations will be profound. Some will become “house churches”, much like what you see in Communist China. Many, however, will fall in line. The larger Protestant denominations will toe the line. Some, like the Episcopalians, are only nominally Christian as is. The Lutherans (ELCA variety) have had actively homosexual clergy for some time as have the Methodists. The two big targets for the government will be the Southern Baptist Convention — which is a voluntary association of independent churches — and the Roman Catholic Church. The pressure will ratchet up on them until they are confronted with confiscation of property or “discovering” hidden meanings in Scripture that reveal homosexual marriage has always been allowed.

Churches won’t disappear but the churches that you will see on Main Street will be peddling a warmed over and watered down version of Christianity that is a combination soup kitchen and twelve step program sans belief in a higher power. Real Christian churches will go underground but it will be a rearguard action. Christianity that chooses to ignore the very Word of God is not a religion, it is a cultural artifact.

The real price will be paid by those of us who are not actually employed by our churches. Organizing to resist homosexual marriage will bring down the FBI upon you as surely as if you were organizing a KKK chapter and with more alacrity than if you were an al Qaeda cell or blocking a polling station in Philadelphia. If you work for a large corporation or are in the military you can look forward to having your affirmatively support of homosexual marriage becoming an item on your performance appraisal. [emphasis mine]

And then there’s this:

Rather consistently local judges and others have said that religious liberty does not prevail for individuals who own businesses or engage in commerce. In effect, you can have religious liberty, so long as you don’t own a business. Here too there are legal nuances, but the fundamental trajectory is clear: Anyone who opposes the celebration of same-sex unions and lifestyle are going to be increasingly entangled in the courts and face more and more charges. [emphasis mine]

Read it all. If you don’t believe it will happen you are living in a fool’s paradise. Either Americans stand up now and defy the tyrannical strain that is beginning to dominate our society, or we will find all of our remaining but shrinking freedoms gone.

Supreme Court voids local sign ordiance

Some good news: In a 9-0 ruling the Supreme Court struck down a local Arizona town’s ordiance that restricted a church’s right to post signs about its upcoming events.

What is most encouraging about this ruling is that all nine justices agreed to it. This suggests that there is a strong majority on the court that supports freedom of speech, and will not look kindly at the Obama administration’s effort to impose its will on the speech and activity of religious and conservative organizations.

It’s National Hate Week!

Link here.

Today, we’re all hating on Indiana. Who will be the left’s Emmanuel Goldstein next week?

Evidently, the sole function of the media these days is to subject the public to a steady stream of manufactured events: “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot”; nuclear power kills; Lena Dunham’s rape by a college conservative at Oberlin; the “mattress girl” raped at Columbia University; Jon Stewart is funny; a fraternity gang-rape at the University of Virginia; and a law protecting religious freedom will lead to separate water fountains for gays in Indiana.

The whole country has to keep being dragged through these liberal hate campaigns, but as soon as the precipitating event turns out to be a gigantic hoax, the truth is revealed like a bedtime story being read to a child: The ending is whispered and the narrator tiptoes out of the room.

Read it all. It will help you distinguish between real news and modern leftwing propaganda, based on lies, being promoted by our modern mainstream press.

Meanwhile, that pizzeria whose owner said they wouldn’t cater a same-sex wedding, though they’d be glad to sell pizzas to homosexuals, has been forced to close because of death threats, including one threat on twitter from a high school coach who thought it a good idea to get together and burn the place down. She has since been suspended from her job.

Three future targets of the same-sex fascists

Link here. First Shapiro outlines how these gay advocates have been lying to us repeatedly over the decades:

Gay activists and their leftist allies told us decades ago that same-sex marriage wasn’t on the agenda. All homosexuals wanted was the benefits of marriage, but not the title. That, of course, was a lie.

Next, gay activists and their leftist allies told us that same-sex marriage would not threaten anyone; it was simply a matter of equal rights. “How will it affect anyone else if two men choose to get married?” they said. That, of course, was a lie. The same-sex marriage agenda includes with it the desire to force individual religious Americans to accept same-sex marriage. Hence the current attempt to leverage same-sex marriage into legislation forcing religious business owners to participate in activities, like same-sex weddings, that they consider sinful.

So, what’s next on the agenda?

He then outlines their next three targets: the churches, private religious universities, and private religious schools. Read it all. Based on history it is logical that these are the next targets. This quote from the article however especially stood out to me, based on the recent legal effort to punish Christian businesses who refuse to endorse and participate in gay marriages:

Once non-profit status is revoked for churches on the basis of supposed discrimination against homosexuals, those churches become private institutions engaged in commerce. Which means that they are regulated as common businesses under anti-discrimination law. Which means they can be shut down or fined for failure to perform same-sex weddings. The left says this will never happen. Which means we are a few years away from it happening. [emphasis mine]

Anyone who thinks this fascist oppression — to force Christian and Jewish religious institutions to perform same-sex marriages — is not on the agenda is living in a dream world. This movement has already succeeded in redefining discrimination and bigotry as anyone who even hints that they consider gay behavior wrong. They have moved to McCarthyite tactics to destroy such people. Next comes the institutions that disagree with them.

Once again, my disagreement here is not with the gay lifestyle. It isn’t for me, but I have no problem if someone else wishes to live that way. Just don’t force me or anyone else to endorse your choices. Just as you deserve the right to liberty of conscience, so does everyone else.

Christian florist tells her side of the story

Watch the video of her television interview below the fold. As she says,

It’s not about the money. It’s about freedom. It’s about my eight kids and our 23 grandchildren and the future. There’s not a price on freedom. You can’t buy my freedom. It’s me now, but tomorrow it’s going to be you. You gotta wake up. [emphasis mine]

She added,

They are talking about bullying me into doing something that is against my faith. They can’t do that.

She also makes it very clear that she and the gay couple are friends, and that she has provided flowers for them many times in the past. And when she declined to do arrangements for their marriage, she provided them alternative recommendations so they wouldn’t be deprived of service, though not from her. And it appears that this gay couple never sued her. It was the ACLU and the Washington attorney general that sued.
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Florist rejects attorney general’s deal to settle lawsuit over same-sex weddings

The Washington florist whose entire assets a judge has ruled can be confiscated because she refuses to participate in a same-sex wedding because of her Christian religion has rejected outright a settlement offered to her by the state’s attorney general.

Ms. Stutzman [the florist] rejected Friday a settlement agreement offered by Mr. Ferguson [the attorney general] that would have required her to pay $2,001 in damages and legal fees after a judge ruled last week that she violated state law by declining to provide services for a same-sex wedding. “My primary goal has always been to bring about an end to the Defendants’ unlawful conduct and to make clear that I will not tolerate discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation,” Mr. Ferguson said in a statement.

The agreement also would require Ms. Stutzman to agree “not to discriminate in the future,” which means she must provide custom floral arrangements for same-sex weddings or stop doing weddings altogether, said Peter LaVallee, a spokesman for the state attorney general’s office.

In rejecting the offer, Stutzman was very blunt about her reasons.

“Your offer reveals that you don’t really understand me or what this conflict is all about,” Ms. Stutzman said in a letter to Mr. Ferguson. “It’s about freedom, not money. I certainly don’t relish the idea of losing my business, my home, and everything else that your lawsuit threatens to take from my family, but my freedom to honor God in doing what I do best is more important.

“…I pray that you reconsider your position. … I kindly served Rob [the gay plaintiff] for nearly a decade and would gladly continue to do so. I truly want the best for my friend. I’ve also employed and served many members of the LGBT community, and I will continue to do so regardless of what happens with this case.”

She concluded, “You chose to attack my faith and pursue this not simply as a matter of law, but to threaten my very means of working, eating, and having a home. If you are serious about clarifying the law, then I urge you to drop your claims against my home, business, and other assets and pursue the legal claims through the appeal process.”

The mildness of the attorney general’s offer suggests to me that he is feeling some political heat. He looks like a tyrant and a bad guy who is trying to destroy this woman expressly because of her religious beliefs. He thus wants this case to end with a victory, but to end as quickly as possible.

Increasing hostility to religion in America

A yearly survey of incidents of religious discrimination in the U.S. has found a steady rise in the past three years.

For the last three years the Liberty Institute and the Family Research Council has published Undeniable: The Survey of Hostility to Religion in America. The legal group says they’re seeing cases of discrimination against those of faith rising rapidly. “The first time we did it, we collected about 600 cases,” Jeff Mateer, general counsel of the Texas-based Liberty Institute, told CBN News. “We went from 600 to 1,200. And this year we’re up to about 1,600. So, the threats are continuing to increase at a dramatic pace.”

The article outlines some specific stories that are quite horrifying. The worst was the case of a man fired from his job because of the sermons he gave during his free time. Sadly, that is only a sample.

Houston mayor withdrews sermon subpoenas

A partial victory for free speech: The lesbian mayor of Houston has withdrawn the subpoenas her administration had issued demanding that conservative pastors turn over to the government any sermons or communications which had discussed politics.

I call this a partial victory because the mayor, Annise Parker, is still in office, and was still unapologetic about the subpoenas.

“The goal of the subpoenas is to defend against the lawsuit and not to provoke a public debate,” Parker said. She is ordering the subpoenas removed for the sake of Houston, not because the request were in any way illegal or intended to intrude on religious liberties, Parker said. “I didn’t do this to satisfy them,” Parker said of critics. “I did it because it was not serving Houston.”

She still thinks it was perfectly okay to make this demand against her opponents. Such a person should never be allowed the power of any political office, including dog-catcher.

California orders churches to fund abortions

Fascists: In a sudden change to its health insurance regulations, leftwing California is now requiring churches to fund abortions.

California’s Department of Managed Health Care has ordered all insurance plans in the state to immediately begin covering elective abortion. Not Plan B. Not contraceptives. Elective surgical dismemberment abortion. At the insistence of the American Civil Liberties Union, the DMHC concluded that a 40-year-old state law requiring health plans to cover “basic health services” had been misinterpreted all these decades. Every plan in the state was immediately ordered, effective August 22, to cover elective abortion. California had not even applied this test to its own state employee health plans (which covered only “medically necessary” abortions). But this novel reading was nevertheless quietly imposed on every plan in the state by fiat.

… Several other California churches have received similar notices from their insurers, and others will follow. While California (like the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, or HHS) exempts churches from its contraceptive mandate, there is no exception to this bureaucratic abortion mandate. This leaves California churches in the illogical and impossible position of being free to exclude contraceptives from their health plan for reasons of religious conscience but required to provide their employees with abortion coverage.

This is clear proof that the left’s long claim that it is the champion of freedom and religious liberty is quite hollow, and if any speech or religion happens to believe something different than the left, the left is going to aggressively move to deny it its freedom.

The Obamacare contraceptive mandate is struck down again, and here are six reasons why.

The Obamacare contraceptive mandate is struck down again, and here are six reasons why.

At the heart of this mandate is the amazing contempt the Obama administration and the left has for religious belief:

In an astonishing display of anti-religious sentiment, the administration argued that forcing religious organizations to designate a third party to provide contraception coverage to their employees isn’t a big deal (legally: de minimis) because it’s “just a form” to fill out, “a purely administrative task.” The district court rightly found that whether a violation of religious freedom is small or large isn’t for the courts to decide. It would be too easy to simply sweep away deeply-held religious beliefs under the claim that government action is merely “de minimis” infringement of rights.

I am not religious, but I will defend to the death the right of a religious person to practice their religion freely, even when we disagree, as long as they don’t act to limit me in my beliefs. Apparently, Obama believes it is okay to trample on those beliefs if they happen to contradict things he believes in.

Two Baptist chaplains are suing the Veterans Administration for demanding they stop naming “Jesus” in their prayers.

Freedom in Modern America: Two Baptist chaplains are suing the Veterans Administration for demanding they stop naming “Jesus” in their prayers.

Two Baptist chaplains said they were forced out of a Veterans Affairs chaplain training program after they refused orders to stop quoting the Bible and to stop praying in the name of Jesus. When the men objected to those demands they were subjected to ridicule and harassment that led to one of the chaplains leaving the program and the other being ejected, according to a federal lawsuit filed Friday.

A Catholic priest at a military base has been prohibited from even volunteering to run Mass and was told that if he violated that order he would be arrested.

Shutdown fascism: A Catholic priest at a military base has been prohibited from even volunteering to run Mass and was told that if he violated that order he would be arrested.

Even more amazing, “Protestant services continue to take place. Only Catholic services have been shutdown.”

A lawsuit has been filed.

A university supervisor orders a student at Sonoma State University in California to remove her cross necklace because “it might offend others.”

A university supervisor orders a student at Sonoma State University in California to remove her cross necklace because “it might offend others.”

The university has responded properly, apologizing and stating that the supervisor was “completely wrong.” However, it remains horrifying that there are individuals in power in a university that somehow don’t understand the very basics of religious liberty.

A judge has ruled that JPL had no right to displine five scientists for sending emails at work protesting the security measures taken by the Bush administration after 9/11.

A judge has ruled that JPL had no right to displine five scientists for sending emails at work, protesting the security measures taken by the Bush administration after 9/11.

I have no problem with this decision, and in fact I applaud it, as I think it completely inappropriate for JPL to discipline anyone for expressing their opinions about the politics of our time. I contrast this ruling however, which essentially celebrates the freedom of JPL employees to attack the policies of a Republican administration using government resources, with the case of David Coppedge, who was fired by JPL because he happened to express conservative religious opinions while working at JPL. In the case of Coppedge, the courts ruled that it was okay for JPL to fire him.

The contrast illustrates the double standard of our time. In modern America, you are always allowed to express liberal or Democratic Party values, anywhere, anytime, and with whatever resources you can take advantage of. Freedom insists that you have that right. Should you express conservative values, however, be careful. You can be punished for doing so. For some reason (political I suspect) freedom does not permit the expression of these ideas, in all circumstances.

Hobby Lobby appears willing to face fines rather than bow to the Obamacare contraceptive mandate.

Hobby Lobby has decided to face millions in fines rather than bow to the Obamacare contraceptive mandate.

They will continue to provide their employees healthcare, but will refuse to include any payments for contraceptives as now required by Obamacare. For standing by their beliefs and doing this, it is very possible this company could end up going bankrupt, thereby putting 13,000 employees out of work. Not only will they lose the healthcare plans that Obama promised they could keep, they won’t even have jobs!

Thank you Obama for giving us Obamacare. And thank you the American voters who have decided to allow this disaster of a law to go forward. Sadly, the worst is yet to come.

A federal judge in Detroit has ruled that a Catholic-owned private business does not have to comply with the Obama administrations contraceptive mandate.

We’ve only just begun: A federal judge in Detroit has ruled that a Catholic-owned private business does not have to comply with the Obama administrations contraceptive mandate.

A pro-life Catholic group announced today it will openly defy the new pro-abortion mandate imposed by the Obama administration.

We’ve only just begun: A pro-life Catholic group announced today it will openly defy the new pro-abortion mandate imposed by the Obama administration.

“The unjust and unconstitutional HHS mandate, against which Priests for Life and 57 other plaintiffs have sued the federal government, takes effect today. We at Priests for Life do not qualify for the year that the government has offered certain groups to ‘adapt’ to the mandate. And we are not ‘religious’ enough for this Administration,” he explained. “But regardless of all that, we do not adapt to injustice; we oppose it.

“Therefore today, on behalf of our organization and on behalf of myself personally, I announce our conscientious objection to this mandate,” he said. “Priests for Life has the highest respect for civil government and advocates the observance of all just laws. But this policy is unjust, and today I reaffirm our intention to disobey it.”

The lawsuits fighting the Obama administration mandate that religious organizations fund contraceptives against their religious beliefs has now risen to more than 20 separate cases and nearly 60 individual plaintiffs,

We’ve only just begun: The lawsuits fighting the Obama administration requirement that religious organizations fund contraceptives against their religious beliefs has now risen to more than 20 separate cases and nearly 60 individual plaintiffs.

“So come and get me if you must, Mr. President. I will not bow to your wicked regulation.”

We’ve only just begun: “So come and get me if you must, Mr. President. I will not bow to your wicked regulation.”

James Dobson is not to be taken lightly. Under the Obamacare HHS contraceptive mandate, his organization, Focus on the Family, would not qualify for any exemption and would be required to pay for contraceptives and abortion drugs. And if Dobson’s organization defies the federal government here, expect very loud fireworks, as Focus is very large with a very large following.

“This is the most despicable violation of religious liberty that this nation has ever seen.”

“This is the most despicable violation of religious liberty that this nation has ever seen.”

Brought to you by Obamacare and the White House.

The trial of an ex-JPL computer specialist who claims he was fired for his Christian beliefs ended today.

The trial of an ex-JPL computer specialist who claims he was fired for his Christian beliefs ended today.

Closing arguments ended Monday after a five-week trial. The case will be decided by Superior Court Judge Ernest Hiroshige, who must first review written arguments from both sides and could take months before announcing a verdict. Both sides agreed to forgo a jury.

There is simply no time in American history we can recall where nearly the entire body of American Catholic bishops and priests have united to speak against a sitting president by name, and promised civil disobedience.

“There is simply no time in American history we can recall where nearly the entire body of American Catholic bishops and priests have united to speak against a sitting president by name, and promised civil disobedience.”

A rabbi speaks out in defense of the Catholic Church and against the Obama administration.

A rabbi speaks out in defense of the Catholic Church and against the Obama administration.

Therefore, as a Rabbi, an Orthodox Jew, and an American, I stand with the Catholic Church and its right to freedom of conscience. If President Obama can force Catholics to pay for abortions, then no religious belief is safe in America, and an America in which religious beliefs are not sacrosanct is an America that is unsafe not only for Jews but for all people of conscience — whether people of faith or secularists.

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