Gay parents shouldn’t both be on child’s birth certificate, Indiana AG argues

https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/gay-parents-shouldn-t-both-be-child-s-birth-certificate-n1249358

The state’s attorney general wants the Supreme Court to reverse a lower court ruling that found Indiana laws limiting who can be called a parent were unconstitutional.

 

Image: Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill

Indiana’s attorney general submitted a brief to the U.S. Supreme Court arguing that it should reverse a federal appeals court’s ruling that allowed both members of same-sex couples in Indiana to be listed as parents on the birth certificates of their children.

The petition from Attorney General Curtis Hill follows a January decision by the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals that affirmed a decision by judges in Indiana’s federal southern district court who found that Indiana laws limiting who can be called the parent of a child were unconstitutional.

 

Hill filed also filed a request in June asking the court to review the appellate court’s decision.

The original case involved Ashlee and Ruby Henderson, a gay married couple from Lafayette who filed a federal lawsuit in 2015 challenging Indiana’s birth records law. They sued the state health commissioner and Tippecanoe County officials because county officials would not list both of them as parents on the birth certificate of their son, who Ruby conceived through artificial insemination.

The case is among the first dealing with same-sex marriage for the Supreme Court since the confirmation of Justice Amy Coney Barrett, the Journal & Courier and The Indianapolis Star reported.

Karen Celestino-Horseman, the Hendersons’ Indianapolis-based attorney, said Wednesday that she expects Hill’s brief will be discussed during a Dec. 11 conference the high court has set on the matter.

“We are hopeful the court will follow the precedent in ‘Pavan,’” Celestino-Horseman said, referring to the high court’s 2017 ruling in the Pavan v. Smith case, which involved Arkansas married couples who conceive through artificial insemination. In that case, the court ruled that the “constellation of benefits that the states have linked to marriage” extended to having the names of same-sex parents on a birth certificate.

In their federal suit, the Hendersons contended that leaving one mother’s name off the birth certificate presented legal issues when it came to health insurance coverage, who could speak for a child at a doctor’s appointment and enrolling in school. They argued that it was unfair to force one mother from a same-sex marriage to spend $4,000 to $5,000 to legally adopt the couple’s child.

The Hendersons won their initial case in 2016. Seven additional couples joined the suit as plaintiffs after Indiana appealed up to the Chicago-based 7th Circuit, which ruled in January that under Indiana law, “a husband is presumed to be a child’s biological father, so that both spouses are listed as parents on the birth certificate and the child is deemed to be born in wedlock.”

“There’s no similar presumption with respect to an all-female married couple — or for that matter an all-male married couple,” the judges wrote, adding that requiring both women in a same-sex marriage to be listed as parents would prevent any discrimination.

In his petition to the court, Hill argues that upholding that decision would violate common sense and throw into jeopardy parental rights based on biology.

“A birth mother’s wife will never be the biological father of the child, meaning that, whenever a birth-mother’s wife gains presumptive ‘parentage’ status, a biological father’s rights and obligations to the child have necessarily been undermined without proper adjudication,” Hill wrote.

Again bigotry on display.  Why does this man so desperately want to take a parent from a child?  He clearly has a ax to grind, as this affects him personally  in no way.  Could he be someone with deeply held religious beliefs that to people of the same gender on a child’s birth certificate makes his god sad.  Makes his god cry?  Is he on a religious crusade to earn his place in his gods afterlife by making the icky gays lives harder?    Please read the next story on this he has an issue with consent also.   Hugs

Indiana AG Asks SCOTUS To Reverse Ruling Allowing Same-Sex Parents To Be Listed On Birth Certificates

Read the full article. Curtis Hill last appeared on JMG earlier this year when he temporarily lost his law license over allegations that he had drunkenly groped several women at a party. Since then Hill has fought against COVID-related restrictions in his state.

 

Biden plans swift moves to protect and advance LGBTQ rights

https://apnews.com/article/joe-biden-donald-trump-barack-obama-discrimination-marriage-fbdd826a46b3c77c265967c73b7ff6e0

As vice president in 2012, Joe Biden endeared himself to many LGBTQ Americans by endorsing same-sex marriage even before his boss, President Barack Obama.

Now, as president-elect, Biden is making sweeping promises to LGBTQ activists, proposing to carry out virtually every major proposal on their wish lists. Among them: Lifting the Trump administration’s near-total ban on military service for transgender people, barring federal contractors from anti-LGBTQ job discrimination, and creating high-level LGBTQ-rights positions at the State Department, the National Security Council and other federal agencies.

In many cases the measures would reverse executive actions by President Donald Trump, whose administration took numerous steps to weaken protections for transgender people and create more leeway for discrimination against LGBTQ people, ostensibly based on religious grounds.

In a policy document, the Biden campaign said Trump and Vice President Mike Pence “have given hate against LGBTQ+ individuals safe harbor and rolled back critical protections.”

Beyond executive actions he can take unilaterally, Biden says his top legislative priority for LGBTQ issues is the Equality Act, passed by the House of Representatives last year but stalled in the Senate. It would extend to all 50 states the comprehensive anti-bias protections already afforded to LGBTQ people in 21 mostly Democratic-governed states, covering such sectors as housing, public accommodations and public services.

Biden says he wants the act to become law within 100 days of taking office, but its future remains uncertain. Assuming the bill passes again in the House, it would need support from several Republicans in the Senate, even if the Democrats gain control by winning two runoff races in Georgia. For now, Susan Collins of Maine is the only GOP co-sponsor in the Senate.

Critics, including prominent religious conservatives, say the bill raises religious freedom concerns and could require some faith-based organizations to operate against their beliefs.

The Equality Act “is a dangerous game changer” in its potential federal threat to religious liberty, said the Rev. Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.

Rep. Chris Stewart, a Utah Republican, tried to strike a compromise last year that would have expanded LGBTQ rights nationwide while allowing exemptions for religious groups to act on beliefs that could exclude LGBTQ people. His proposal won support from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Seventh-day Adventist Church but was panned by liberal and civil rights groups.

“Anti-equality forces are trying to use the framework of religious liberty to strip away individual rights,” said Alphonso David, president of the Human Rights Campaign, a national LGBTQ-rights organization.

Among the actions that Biden pledges to take unilaterally, scrapping Trump’s transgender military ban would be among the most notable.

Jennifer Levi, a Massachusetts-based transgender-rights lawyer, said it’s clear Biden has the authority to do so after taking office.

Nicolas Talbott, a transgender man whom Levi has represented in a lawsuit seeking to overturn the ban, called that “a huge relief.”

“I look forward to being allowed to re-enroll in ROTC so I can continue to train, keep up my fitness to serve, and become the best Army officer I can possibly be,” Talbott said via email.

Some of Biden’s other promises:

— Appoint an array of LGBTQ people to federal government positions. There’s wide expectation that Biden will nominate an LGBTQ person to a Cabinet post, with former presidential contender Pete Buttigieg among the possibilities.

— Reverse Trump administration policies carving out religious exemptions allowing discrimination against LGBTQ people by social service agencies, health care providers, adoption and foster care agencies and other entities.

— Reinstate Obama administration guidance directing public schools to allow transgender students to access bathrooms, locker rooms and sports teams in accordance with their gender identity. The Trump administration revoked this guidance.

— Allocate federal resources to help curtail violence against transgender people, particularly transgender women of color. Rights groups say at least 38 transgender or gender-nonconforming people have been killed in the U.S. this year.

— Support legislative efforts to ban so-called conversion therapy for LGBTQ minors.

— Bolster federal efforts to collect comprehensive data about LGBTQ people in the U.S. by adding questions about sexual orientation and gender identity to national surveys.

— Ensure that LGBTQ rights are a priority for U.S. foreign policy and be prepared to use pressure tactics, including sanctions, against foreign governments violating those rights.

Whatever happens in Washington, some activists worry that Republican-controlled state legislatures may push anti-LGBTQ bills, such as curtailing the ability of transgender youth to access certain medical treatments or participate in school sports. They are also concerned that an influx of conservative federal judges appointed by Trump might lead to rulings allowing religious exemptions.

Earlier this month the Supreme Court — now with a solid conservative majority — heard arguments on whether a Catholic social services agency in Philadelphia should be able to turn away same-sex couples who want to be foster parents, while still receiving local government funding.

Tim Schultz, a religious freedom advocate, outlined two potential paths for the debate over the Equality Act: “ongoing legislative gridlock, regulatory trench warfare and judicial decisions, which will happen independently of what the president does,” or active engagement by Biden for a new strategy that can win bipartisan support in the Senate.

The first path would provide only “temporary satisfaction,” given that regulatory moves can be undone by future presidents, said Schultz, president of the nonprofit 1st Amendment Partnership.

Nathan Diament, executive director of the Orthodox Union Advocacy Center, cited Biden’s campaign-trail appeals for unity — and his commitment to faith outreach — as positive signs for more engagement on the issue next year.

“He and his team will be very well-positioned to broker compromise if they want to, to get this done,” said Diament, who has advised both the Trump and Obama administrations.

Christian couple who said they would try to “cure” a gay kid sues foster agency for denying them

https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2020/11/christian-couple-said-try-cure-gay-kid-sues-foster-agency-denying/

Byron and Keira Hordyk, an Australian evangelical Christian couple who applied to be foster parents, are suing for “religious discrimination” after they were denied. They say the foster agency’s decision wasn’t based on whether or not they can provide a loving home to a child but instead on their anti-LGBTQ religious beliefs.

The couple told an employee from the Wanslea Family Services that they would not accept an LGBTQ kid and would subject the child to traumatizing “conversion therapy” meant to turn them straight or cisgender. The Hordyks were denied because their home wouldn’t be a safe environment for the child.

Related: Classy foster kid says he ‘went red’ when his teacher berated him for having two dads

The American Psychiatric Association has long opposed conversion therapy and has called on lawmakers to ban what they call a “harmful and discriminatory practice.”

Even conversion therapy that doesn’t use abusive or violent techniques can harm a child’s mental health by teaching them that they are fundamentally broken because of their identity. According to HRC, the practice has been linked to an increased risk of “depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide.”

Garden State Equality, an LGBTQ organization, says simply, “Conversion therapy is child abuse.”

So it is not surprising that the Hordyks got rejected. The couple said they got a letter from the foster agency saying that they did not meet the requirement of “providing a safe living environment.”

“We do feel we have been discriminated against and also we felt that if we were quiet about this and didn’t say anything about it, it could potentially harm or limit any people with the same Christian values as ours from fostering,” the couple told The West Australian. “We hold traditional Christian views on how the Bible teaches us on sexuality and marriage.”

“We stated it from the beginning. We are not here to hide behind it. Everyone — particularly with a divisive issue — is afraid of being put into the realm of public opinion in a negative light. And my beliefs are strong enough that this might be my cross to bear.”

In the United States, foster agencies run by religious organizations have sued to demand their “right” to deny LGBTQ people as potential foster parents. The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, a case brought by a Catholic adoption agency seeking the right to discriminate against potential LGBTQ foster and adoptive parents, shortly after the election.

Catholic Social Services sued after the city of Philadelphia ended a contract with the service after finding out the agency wouldn’t serve gay couples. Lower court rulings have sided with the city, pointing out that religious beliefs are not grounds for violating general civil rights laws.

The Supreme Court ruled in 1990 that religious groups are not exempt from general local, state, and federal laws, but the current makeup of the court has caused concern among civil rights advocates.

This was the first major case that new Justice Amy Coney Barrett heard. The far-right anti-LGBTQ Justice’s confirmation tilted the court with a 6-3 conservative bias.

The Pilgrims Were Queer

I really hope this is true.   I have not investigated it yet, but hope springs eternal.   Hugs

https://www.vice.com/en/article/vb3w7a/the-pilgrims-were-queer

Matt Baume

Dig into the history and you’ll see plenty of early American colonizers were super gay—and their compatriots had views of it that were complicated, to say the least.

As you sit down for turkey, corn, and arguments with relatives at Thanksgiving this year, take a moment to give thanks to Thomas Morton, who founded what could be considered America’s first queer hippie colony in 1625.

Today, Merrymount is a quiet neighborhood of Quincy, Massachusetts; residents explain that the name is an English translation of its original name, Passonagessit. But, bless their hearts, the truth may be more exciting. According to historians and original records, the pilgrims founded an unusually queer society—one that wasn’t straight-up accepting of all that queerness, per se, but had a more complicated relationship with it than you might think. In fact, as historians note, the name “Merrymount” can also refer to a Latin phrase meaning “erect phallus”—quite a coincidence, given the men erected an 80-foot pole in the center of town.

 

Though our modern understanding of sexuality would have been completely foreign to them, early European immigrants experienced same-sex attraction just as we do today, and they had queer sex, entered queer relationships, and formed queer households in ways that are surprisingly familiar.

And though early laws called for the death penalty for “sodomy” and “buggery,” the Pilgrims had a more complicated attitude about homosexuality than you might think. Despite the prohibition on same-sex encounters, there were circumstances where they were tolerated—or at least ignored—and penalties gradually weakened over the course of the 1600s, in part out of necessity because such encounters were so common, according to Michael Bronski, a Professor of Practice in Media and Activism in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard. In other words, yes, many of the pilgrims in whose honor we celebrate Thanksgiving were queer.

When they arrived in what they called the Americas, colonizers sought a “city upon a hill”—that is, an example of religious purity. But the inhabitants of that land certainly didn’t meet their Biblical expectations, particularly when it came to gender roles.

“[Indigenous] gender roles—not all the time, but a considerable amount—were completely foreign to the Europeans,” said Bronski. “Every tribe had their own word for it, but there was a considerable amount of gender fluidity.”

 

Among the Mamitaree tribe, the journals of Lewis and Clark recorded men allowed to wear women’s clothes and marry other men. Among the Crow, men were honored for expressing feminine roles.

“The Europeans [were] totally scandalized,” said Bronski.

Despite their heterosexual aspirations, the Pilgrims found that sodomy just refused to stop happening among their ilk. Though they passed laws to encourage heterosexual marriage and reproduction, Bronski said, “clearly, they were fucking before they were married.”

In a 1978 paper entitled “Things Fearful to Name,” historian Robert F. Oaks described colonists who were what we would today call queer. For example, there was the 1629 arrival of the ship Talbot, carrying “5 beastly Sodomitical boys [who] confessed their wickedness not to be named.” They were sent back to England for trial.

In 1637, John Allexander and Thomas Roberts were accused of “lude behavior and uncleane carriage one w[ith] another, by often spendinge their seede one vpon another.” Alexander was beaten, branded, and exiled; Roberts was whipped and returned to indentured servitude. In 1649, Mary Hammon and Sara Norman were accused of “lewd behavior each with other upon a bed” and “divers Lasivious speeches.” Norman was sentenced “to make a publick acknowlidgment, so fare as conveniently may bee, of her vnchast beahuior.”

There exists little record of queer life in the colonies, since criminal complaints were generally the only occasion on which they were detailed. Thomas Morton’s founding of Merrymount remains among the most vivid: Merrymount denziens are described as having rejected the strict rules of the Puritans, declaring all servants and slaves to be free and encouraging intermingling with indigenous Algonquin people. Morton declared himself “Lord of Misrule” and his people were described by Nathaniel Hawthorne as a “crew of Comus,” a reference to a mythological figure during whose ceremonies men and women exchanged clothing.

 

Hawthorne’s description of Merrymounters, written two centuries later, could refer to a Pride parade today: “One was a youth in glistening apparel, with a scarf of the rainbow pattern crosswise on his breast. … There was the likeness of a bear erect, brute in all but his hind legs, which were adorned with pink silk stockings.”

On one particularly exciting occasion, the residents of Merrymount erected a maypole and danced in a manner described as evoking Ganymede and Zeus—figures that often symbolized same-sex couplings. This proto-Pride proved a bit too much for the neighbors, who arrested Morton, chopped down the pole, and scattered the residents.

But Puritan objections to homosexuality were not entirely rooted in what we would call gender normativity. “The earliest sodomy laws are not prohibiting homsexual sex per se,” said Bronski. “They’re prohibiting non-reproductive sex. So if you had anal sex with your wife, that would be a crime. The most important thing was to reproduce, because half the children died when they were infants.”

Indeed, the Puritans often avoided applying prescribed punishments for queer sex. Nicholas Sension, for example, was brought before a court in 1672 having propositioned numerous men over the preceding thirty years. “He took me and threw me on the chest and took hold on my privy parts,” testified one man. Sension was merely admonished at least twice during those decades before finally being whipped, fined, and shamed. It was yet another case, historian Linda Bissell wrote, of authorities using the law “to enforce obedience only when other means had failed and violations of norms were flagrant.”

 

Despite many settlements calling for the death penalty for sodomy, colonizers found that conditions were so harsh and the community so delicate that it was inadvisable to kill except in the most extreme cases. As a result, they often found reasons to forgive same-sex intercourse when it was discovered.

“There were always concerns about starvation of the entire colony,” said historian Carl Anthony. “So in the order of things that were important to them, that harsh Christian judgement about sex outside of marriage fell lower on the list.”

This “may have reflected economic realities in an area where labor was scarce, or it may have stemmed from a reluctance to apply capital punishment to crimes feared to be rather common,” wrote Oaks in 1978.

“My reading of this is that the Puritans were like, ‘people do this stuff, but it really shouldn’t be public,’” said Bronski. “‘We don’t want to go too far punishing them, because that would hurt the community.’ The most important thing is to keep the community stable.”

He added, “you kept the community together by keeping your emotions in.”

“Puritans became inured to sexual offenses,” wrote historian Edmund Morgan in 1942, “because there were so many.”

It’s an attitude that managed to stay with Americans over the intervening centuries, a tension between distaste for homosexuality and resignation that it will never go away. It’s only in the last few decades that the original spirit of Merrymount has returned, whether in the form of separatist radical faerie communities or queer enclaves within cities.

“I think Thomas Morton would have loved it,” Bronski said. “I’m rather fond of the Puritans. I wouldn’t want to live with them, but they totally understand that human beings are fallible. And what really matters is keeping the community together — which I can relate to as part of a gay community.”

Follow Matt Baume on Twitter.

Brian Brown Lays Out Path To Overturning Obergefell

 

Via email from hate group leader Brian Brown:

With the addition of Justice Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, we at NOM believe there is now a strong majority on the Court to overturn Obergefell if the right case is brought before it. We are determined to do just that, but we need your help.

The strategy behind trying to bring a case before the US Supreme Court to overturn the Obergefell gay ‘marriage’ ruling is complex. We can’t simply file a lawsuit and ask the Court to take it up.

First, we need to present a real and present controversy that requires a judicial ruling to resolve. What that issue might be requires a great deal of thought and coordination with allies and policymakers in several key states.

It could be a state law passed by a supportive Legislature, an executive order or regulation issued by a supportive Governor, or possibly even a law enacted directly by voters via a ballot measure. Our team is working hard to evaluate all the options.

We also must consider the judicial territory where the controversy arises and the path it would take to get before the Supreme Court.

Because lower courts are bound to follow the Supreme Court’s Obergefell precedent, we know that we will likely lose in the lower courts.

We will need a situation where an official party who has standing to appeal will be able to press the case forward to the Supreme Court.

Of course, we also need to consider the political and public opinion environment in which this sort of case will be debated, and the financial resources that can be devoted to supporting the effort. We have a lot of work to do, and we urgently need your help to be successful.

Thanks to the matching gift fund that has been made available to us through the end of the year, we can get a head start on this critical work if you will help with a generous donation that will immediately be 100% matched.

Can I count on you at this important time, knowing that your donation will DOUBLE in size and impact?

So how can a person be so happy to take rights and happiness from others? There is nothing about my marriage that harms Brown, yet his mission is to make my marriage illegal. Hugs

Trump-Appointed Federal Appeals Court Judges Strike Down Palm Beach County’s “Conversion Therapy” Ban

Via press release from Lambda Legal:

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit today reversed a lower court ruling and struck down local Palm Beach County. Florida, and City of Boca Raton ordinances banning so-called conversion therapy on minors. Lambda Legal CEO Kevin Jennings issued the following statement:

“The City of Boca Raton and Palm Beach County joined states and municipalities across the country who have properly banned the discredited and harmful practice of so-called ‘conversion therapy’ on minors in order to protect LGBTQ youth. Laws prohibiting this dangerous practice have withstood legal challenges in numerous courts. Today’s decision is a marked departure from precedent and an incredibly dangerous decision for our youth.

“So-called ‘conversion therapy’ is nothing less than child abuse. It poses documented and proven critical health risks, including depression, shame, decreased self-esteem, social withdrawal, substance abuse, self-harm and suicide. Youth are often subjected to these practices at the insistence of parents who don’t know or don’t believe that the efforts are harmful and doomed to fail: when these efforts predictably fail to produce the expected result, many LGBTQ children are kicked out of their homes.

“Both judges joining today’s decision were appointed by President Trump. We fear that today’s decision may be the tip of the iceberg in terms of the harm that may come from a federal judiciary that has been packed for the last four years with dangerous ideologues. The damage done by this misguided opinion is incalculable and puts young people in danger.”

Photo: Federalist Society’s Andrew Brasher, whose nomination to a lower federal court failed to advance in 2018, at his successful 11th Circuit Court nomination hearing before the US Senate in December 2019.

 

🚨11th Circuit rules that bans on anti-LGBTQ "conversion therapy" violate the First Amendment. 2–1 decision, both judges in the majority appointed by Trump. A really awful and frightening decision.

Note that these bans only apply to minors and licensed counselors. Not clergy or private citizens. And lawmakers found that trying to change a child's sexual orientation or gender identity is extremely harmful and dangerous. The 11th Circuit's Trump judges don't care.

This is what Rule By Trump Judges looks like: We are not allowed to shield LGBTQ youth from discredited "conversion therapy," even though it increases risk of suicide.

Trump judges won't let LGBTQ people protect our own communities, our own children, from harm. Sickening.

Today's decision from the 11th Circuit blocking bans on LGBTQ "conversion therapy" for minors creates a circuit split. There is thus a very good chance the Supreme Court will now take up the issue. I have no real doubt that SCOTUS will find these bans unconstitutional.

The Supreme Court's six conservative justices will likely (1) strike down laws barring licensed counselors from seeking to change a minor's sexual orientation or gender identity, and (2) continue to uphold laws that force physicians to recite anti-abortion propaganda to patients.

This is an important point from Martin's dissent. The majority claims there's not enough evidence that "conversion therapy" is harmful. But medical experts have said *it would be unethical* to conduct the research that the majority demands, because it would harm children.

One startling aspect of today's opinion: The majority discredits the opposition of *every mainstream medical organization* to "conversion therapy," claiming that these groups are simply trying to censor therapists who don't share "majority preferences."

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/11/trump-judges-conversion-therapy-lgbtq.html

Originally tweeted by Mark Joseph Stern (@mjs_DC) on November 20, 2020.

Alito Blasts LGBTQ Rights In Federalist Society Speech

Alito Blasts LGBTQ Rights In Federalist Society Speech

Politico reports:

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito delivered an unusually inflammatory public speech Thursday night, starkly warning about the threats he contends religious believers face from advocates for gay and abortion rights, as well as public officials responding to the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to a virtual conference of conservative lawyers, the George W. Bush appointee made no direct comment on the recent election, the political crisis relating to President Donald Trump’s refusal to acknowledge his defeat or litigation on the issue pending at the Supreme Court.

However, Alito didn’t hold back on other controversial subjects, even suggesting that the pressure Christians face surrounding their religious beliefs is akin to the strictures the U.S. placed on Germany and Japan after World War II.

Slate reports:

Alito abandoned any pretense of impartiality in his speech, a grievance-laden tirade against Democrats, the progressive movement, and the United States’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Alito’s targets included COVID-related restrictions, same-sex marriage, abortion, Plan B, the contraceptive mandate, LGBTQ non-discrimination laws, and five sitting Democratic senators.

Ironically, Alito began his pre-recorded address by condemning an effort by the U.S. Judicial Conference to forbid federal judges from being members of the Federalist Society. He then praised, by name, the four judges who spearheaded a successful effort to defeat the ban—or, as Alito put it, who “stood up to an attempt to hobble the debate that the Federalist Society fosters.”

Alito is delivering the keynote speech at this year’s Federalist Society convention. He’s using the occasion to defend the group, claiming its members face “harassment and retaliation for saying anything that departs from the law school orthodoxy.”

Alito attacks the Judicial Conference for attempting to forbid federal judges from being members of the Federalist Society, and praises the conservative judges who successfully fought the ban.

UHHH, Alito seems to be criticizing governors for issuing “sweeping restrictions” in response to COVID-19. Also criticizes progressives and New Dealers for putting too much faith in scientists and experts.

Alito says this rule by executive fiat is “where the law has been going for some time—in the direction of government by executive officials who are thought to implement policies by scientific expertise.” Suggests this is a dangerous trend.

Whoa, Alito is VERY critical of COVID restrictions and “rule by experts.”

Then he says: “in certain corners, religious liberty is fast becoming a disfavored right.”

He condemns “the protracted campaign against the Little Sisters of the Poor.” Calls it an “unrelenting attack.”

Alito now condemns Washington State for requiring pharmacies to carry Plan B, “which destroys an embryo after fertilization.”

He also criticizes the Colorado civil rights commissioner in Masterpiece Cakeshop who said “freedom of religion” can be used for discrimination.

Alito criticizes Harvard Law Prof. Mark Tushnet for this notorious blog post, and quotes from it extensively. Says “it’s not dark yet but it’s getting there,” quoting Bob Dylan.

https://balkin.blogspot.com/2016/05/abandoning-defensive-crouch-liberal.html?m=1

Now Alito is criticizing the Nevada governor for giving casinos a higher COVID attendance cap than churches.

He moves onto criticizing the federal judge who suspended the rule that required people to pick up abortion pills in person.

Yikes. Alito condemns Obergefell, the same-sex marriage decision, and says it has led to censorship of people who believe marriage is “a union of one man and one woman.” Says freedom of speech is “falling out of favor in some circles.”

Alito brings up a brief filed with the Supreme Court by five Democratic senators in a gun case warning that the court is becoming too political. He calls the brief “an affront to the Constitution and the rule of law.”

Without saying the words “court-packing,” Alito warns about Democratic efforts to “bully” the court with threats to “restructure” it. Tells a story about a foreign judge threatened with death if he didn’t rule for the government.

Alito is done.

That was easily the most political speech I’ve ever seen delivered by a Supreme Court justice. Wow. Same-sex marriage, guns, abortion, contraception, persecution of the Federalist Society … he really squeezed it all in there. Yikes.

Probably the strangest aspect of Alito’s speech, other than his attack on COVID restrictions, was his claim that people who oppose same-sex marriage get called “bigots” and this somehow threatens freedom of speech. But how?! Public criticism is not censorship! He knows this!

Here is Justice Alito complaining that the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision has crushed the free speech of anti-LGBTQ advocates.

Here’s Justice Alito complaining about this amicus brief filed by @SenWhitehouse, @SenBlumenthal, @maziehirono, @SenatorDurbin, and @SenGillibrand, and warning of Democrats’ threats to “restructure” the Supreme Court.

And here is Justice Alito defending Masterpiece Cakeshop’s Jacks Phillips for refusing to bake a cake for a same-sex couple. Alito notes that the couple was offered a free cake elsewhere, then supported by “celebrity chefs.”

As @danepps pointed out, Alito inadvertently made a very strong argument for court reform this evening. https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/11/alito-federalist-society-speech-insane.html @Slate

Originally tweeted by Mark Joseph Stern (@mjs_DC) on November 13, 2020.

Fort Lauderdale’s Gay Mayor: Trump Cultists Called Me “Faggot And Pedophile” At My Voting Location [VIDEO]

Fort Lauderdale’s Gay Mayor: Trump Cultists Called Me “Faggot And Pedophile” At My Voting Location [VIDEO]

Miami’s CBS News affiliate reports:

With all the vitriol that has surrounded this election season, there’s another claim of harassment – this time from the mayor of Fort Lauderdale.  He recalled how homophobic slurs were hurled at him while he was at an early vote location at Coral Ridge Mall.  Trantalis is the city’s first openly gay mayor.

“I encountered a number of people who were there on behalf of the Trump campaign who immediately accosted me, calling me pedophile, started calling me a [homophobic slur] and thought it was fun,” he said. He called the people behind it a fringe element.

“I know it’s not the Republican Party. I know it’s just a lot of rabble rousers that are fringe elements of the Trump organization that felt they could come into our city,” he said. “Several were not from our city. They admitted they came from other parts of the state.”

As I reported earlier, that Coral Ridge Mall voting location has been the target of multiple Trump and anti-mask protests.