Last week, the Supreme Court chose not to take up a case brought to them by former Rowan County (Kentucky) Clerk Kim Davis, the anti-gay government official who wouldn’t issue same-sex marriage licenses even though that was her job. But that wasn’t the big news.
The headlines focused on how two justices, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, issued a statement saying that, while they agreed it was the right move not to hear this particular case, they believed the Obergefell ruling that legalized marriage equality nationwide needed to be overturned.
That was especially disturbing because Chief Justice John Roberts dissented in Obergefell, two new justices have been appointed to the court by Donald Trump, and another vehemently anti-LGBTQ judge will likely join them within weeks. There’s a very strong chance that, like abortion rights, marriage equality will soon be overturned.
Because this is obviously a matter centered around religion and “religious freedom” (i.e. faith-based bigotry), the leaders of the Congressional Freethought Caucus have issued a statement denouncing that possibility.
Representatives Jared Huffman and Jamie Raskin sent this along in an email:
Suggesting reversal of this landmark ruling is a dramatic attack on the LGBTQ+ community that turns religious liberty into a weapon against other people’s fundamental rights. Religious freedom isn’t the right to compel the government to deny the equal rights of other citizens. But, as members of the Congressional Freethought Caucus, we see right-wing forces on the Court and in Congress trying to twist religious free exercise into a bizarre new right to make the state discriminate against disfavored groups.
Any government that can turn the clock back to discriminate against same-sex couples can also turn it back to discriminate against interracial and interfaith couples. Nothing could be more deeply at odds with our principles of constitutional freedom and equality for all Americans.
That right there is alarming. The congressmen are saying that if marriage equality can be overturned, there’s really nothing that could prevent Christians from making the same argument in other ways.
What happens if a county clerk refuses to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple using the same justification as Kim Davis? What happens if a baker refuses to sell a wedding cake to an interfaith couple? If religion becomes a legal excuse to avoid following the law, it would be a disaster.
This is not a slippery slope fallacy. While fewer Christians have a problem with interracial/interfaith couples, those bigots exist. It’s up to our courts — and our legislators — to make sure bigotry has no place in the public square. With a conservative supermajority on the Supreme Court, that protection could be out the window.
I feel so loved. I have long wondered what happened in this man’s life that he hates gay people so much. Some have said he is just using it to grift, to get money from people. But I think it is more than that. He has gone to other countries to try to get laws enacted against gay people, he really does hate LGBTQ+ people.
Via email from hate group leader Brian Brown:
It is absolutely imperative that we mount an unprecedented effort to ensure that this justice is confirmed without delay.
I’m asking you to make a sacrificial financial gift to NOM right now so that we can immediately deploy a comprehensive pressure campaign aimed at holding Republican Senate votes to confirm President Trump’s pick to the Supreme Court.
This is a moment that could pay decades of dividends for all the issues we care about. We’ve never had a bigger opportunity to advance our cause. Will you be with us at this historic moment?
The left has gone absolutely berserk at the prospect of President Trump naming another justice to the Supreme Court. They are threatening the country with total chaos, including violence. Already they’ve gathered their allies with Antifa to harangue GOP Senators at home. They’ve threatened arson attacks on Congress.
This is the Supreme Court nomination that could finally bring us a reversal of Roe v Wade and usher in a pro-life majority on the Court. It could also pave the way for the restoration of marriage to our laws and scrapping the illegitimate, anti-constitutional imposition of same-sex ‘marriage’ on the nation.
It will mean that religious liberty will be restored to its rightful place as a foundational constitutional right, and that the fake “rights” that are constantly demanded by the left – including special rules for homosexuals and the so-called transgendered – will no longer see the light of day.
You can be certain that LGBT extremists will be doing everything in their power to block this confirmation. It’s imperative that we be on the front lines fighting for control of the Supreme Court by demanding that Republicans support President Trump’s nominee.
History is counting on us at this critical moment. I pray with all I have that you will help make this moment the point in time where the direction of our nation was forever changed back to the “one nation under God” that has been so blessed throughout our country’s existence.
Please donate generously. I pray that every NOM supporter will discuss with their spouse and family what financial sacrifice they can make to help ensure that we meet this momentous moment in time. It’s that important.
Pompeo is speaking on the invitation of FPPC president John Stemberger, who once famously said that it was “worth dying” to stop same-sex marriage. Earlier this month Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed one of Stemberger’s proteges to the Florida Supreme Court. His group is separate from the Florida Family Association, which is best known here for flying anti-gay banners over Disney World during the annual Gay Days events.
More at the link above. Worth dying to stop same sex marriage says the guy who it doesn’t effect at all and whose marriage no one threatens. White Christian Privilege on parade. Hugs
Five years after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriages around the U.S., more than a half million households are made up of married same-sex couples, according to figures the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday.
Since 2014, the year before the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same sex marriages, the number of married same-sex households has increased by almost 70%, rising to 568,110 couples in 2019, according to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.
Of the 980,000 same-sex couple households reported in 2019, 58% were married couples and 42% were unmarried partners, the survey showed.
There were slightly more female couple households than male couple households.
“Opponents of marriage equality frequently argued that same-sex couples really weren’t all that interested in marriage. But the large increase in marriages among same-sex couples since marriage equality became legal nationwide offers evidence of the clear desire for marriage among same-sex couples,” said Gary Gates, a demographer specializing in LGBT issues.
The survey revealed noticeable economic differences between male couples and female couples, as well as same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples.
Same-sex married couples had a higher median income than opposite-sex married couples, $107,210 compared to $96,932. In same-sex marriages, though, male couples earned more than female couples, $123,646 versus $87,690.
In the survey, the average age of a respondent in a same-sex marriage was 48, and the average age of the spouse was 47. Of those who responded to the survey as being in a same-sex married household, 82% identified as white, almost 7% identified themselves as Black and almost 4% were Asian. More than 13% were Hispanic.
More than 16% of same-sex married households were interracial couples, double the rate for opposite-sex married couples.
The U.S. had 122 million households in 2019. The number of gays and lesbian households in the U.S. is greater than 980,000 since that figure only reflected same-sex couples living together.
There is more information at the link above. For years the evangelical profesional haters have cried the gays were were going to destroy marriage. Has not happened. For years these same groups have cried the gays are going to destroy the US, sorry but that seems to be tRump and his cults job. I am 57 years old, and been out almost all of my life. Really even in the military I was in a progressive unit and even way back then it was semi OK. The higher ups protected the gay jr enlisted from the senior enlisted if there was a problem. But I am tired of this ongoing hate / bigotry inspired by religious people who don’t even understand the book they think the probitions come from. I am tired of some people wanting the right to hurt others. Really holy there. I am just wondering if they will ever see the truth. Other countries have had same sex marriage for over 20 years, and their people have better lives than the people in the US. Hugs
Again religious people wanting special privilege to advertise their religious beliefs by not wearing the store uniform. Really it is about their wanting others to know how holy they are. It has little to do with the LGBTQ+ because the heart is not a rainbow. The US government is joining the side of two people who want the god given right to be assholes to a segment of the population, to disregard laws and discriminate freely against those they dislike. Can we say 1950 amem. Hugs
NBC News reports:
The complaint was filed Monday by the EEOC on behalf of Brenda Lawson, 72, and Trudy Rickerd, 57, who both worked at a Kroger store in Conway, Arkansas, for several years before being fired last spring.
The two women were allegedly disciplined and eventually terminated after they refused to wear new aprons issued last April that featured an embroidered rainbow heart on the top left portion of the bib.
The lawsuit states that both women “believe in the literal interpretation of the Bible” and “hold a sincerely held religious belief that homosexuality is a sin.” Lawson and Rickerd both, it continued, each “believed wearing the logo showed her advocacy of the [LGBTQ] community, which she could not do.”
There is more at the link above and I think it is time we worry about the white supremacist Christian takeover of the US government. Hugs
Jamie R. Grosshans, the last-minute choice of Gov. Ron DeSantis to the Florida Supreme Court, is an anti-abortion defender who has been active in a number of Christian legal groups, including a powerful national organization whose mission is to “spread the Gospel by transforming the legal system.”
Both times Grosshans applied to the state’s high court, she left out some details on her application: specifically her membership in the Alliance Defending Freedom, her work as a Blackstone Fellow, a prestigious but secretive national award that trains rising star lawyers in the conservative teachings of the Alliance Defending Freedom, and her 2011 work with Orlando attorney John Stemberger to prevent a young woman from having an abortion.
The Alliance Defending Freedom is a national organization that, according to its website “exists to keep the doors open for the Gospel by advocating for religious liberty, the sanctity of human life, freedom of speech, and marriage and family.”
It trains lawyers and funds cases on abortion, religion, tuition tax credits, and LGBTQ issues. Notably, the group represented the petitioner in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case where a Colorado baker refused to serve a gay couple, and the petitioner in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the landmark case in which the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the birth control mandate in employee-funded health plans was unconstitutional.
Its web site declares: “Marriage has always been a union between one man and one woman” and, “Opponents of marriage will not stop at removing the foundation of civilization.”
Grosshans’ background and affiliation with the Christian-based organizations may not have been spelled out on her application, but wereno surprise to the legal community that promoted her, said William Large, president of the Florida Justice Reform Institute, an organization that advocates for tort reform.
“Judge Grosshans is known as a member of the school-choice, home-school, pro-life community and is thought of very highly in those communities,” he said.
According to the Alliance Defense Fund’s promotional material, the national organization’s mission is “to keep the door open for the spread of the Gospel by transforming the legal system.”
The group’s federal 990 tax form says: “The Blackstone Legal Fellowship equips these students to adhere to the practice of their faith in the legal profession, an arena often hostile to Christianity.”
It has also stated that the goal of the program is “to train a new generation of lawyers who will rise to positions of influence and leadership as legal scholars, litigators, judges — perhaps even Supreme Court Justices — who will work to ensure that justice is carried out in America’s courtrooms.” The Alliance Defense Fund conceals the names of its fellows.
In 2016, she wrote an article for Christian Lawyer magazine and disclosed that she has done pro bono legal work for crisis pregnancy centers, often faith-based organizations that offer women pregnancy advice and counsel against abortion.
“As attorneys, it’s easy to feel like we are not on the mission field in the traditional sense,” Grosshans wrote in the magazine. “But we have a unique calling. The mission field comes to us. The mission field hires us. As the Apostle Paul encourages, ‘We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.’ “
Included in those principles, Smith noted, is Section 23 of the Florida Constitution, the “right of privacy,” which allows for freedom from governmental intrusion into one’s private life.
Florida abortion rights advocates have long pointed to the privacy section as evidence that access to abortion is guaranteed under state law. In Roe v. Wade, 1973′s landmark federal abortion rights case, the United States Supreme Court found that the U.S. Constitution guarantees a right to privacy, nullifying many state criminal penalties associated with abortion.
Florida conservatives have long argued that the privacy clause in the state Constitution shouldn’t apply to abortion. The new Supreme Court, with its three new justices appointed by DeSantis, who is conservative and anti-abortion, has the power to reshape abortion precedent for generations.
As for ushering in a conservative court, Thompson said she was resigned to the fact that no matter who DeSantis picked it would yield this result.
“Clearly there is an agenda to reshape the judiciary,” she said. “So you have people with these conservative views, and some very regressive views, with regard to the rights of women.”
There is more at the link above. Basically a highly religious woman left her work for extreme evangelical / fundamental Christian organizations to prevent people from exercising their constitutional rights and to block any rights for the LGBTQ+ communities. Sort of lying for god I guess. Hugs
I do not understand how any LGBTQ+ person could support the Republicans, any of them, but some sad self haters do. Hugs
Two months after a controversial State Department commission elevated religious freedom at the expense of LGBTQ equality and reproductive rights, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is planning to promote its findings at the United Nations, Mother Jones has learned.
During the UN General Assembly, which begins on September 15 in New York, Pompeo is expected to lead an event centered on human rights and, specifically, the report from the Commission on Unalienable Rights, which he formed last year. Meanwhile, on September 16, the commission’s chair and secretary are staging a virtual event with the US ambassador to the UN office in Geneva to present its report to the international community.
Since its formation, the commission has been a Pompeo project through and through, stacked with anti-LGBTQ scholars and headed by his former boss. Its ostensible purpose, which Pompeo outlined in a Wall Street Journal op-ed, was to distinguish between unalienable rights, which “are by nature universal,” and ad hoc rights created by “politicians and bureaucrats.” That argument—and the extremely public, anti-LGBTQ views held by its members—led the human rights advocacy community to disavow the commission and its report, which unsurprisingly turned out to prioritize religious freedom while labeling abortion and same-sex marriage as “divisive social and political controversies.”
The harsh response has not deterred Pompeo in the slightest. Within weeks of the draft report’s publication in July, it had been translated into six languages, including Farsi. (Given the Trump administration’s increasingly hostile stance toward Iran, that was certainly no accident.)
There is more at the link above. It is incredible the hate these people have for the LGBTQ+ community. I don’t understand it at all. We are not harming them, not taking their god away from them, we are people who deserve the same equal rights in society as they do. They want to take our rights away, they are the aggressors, they are causing the problems, they want special privileges to disregard the laws and rights of anyone they don’t like. Hugs
Via press release from Lambda Legal:
Today, the Trump Administration released a new list of dangerous, ultra-conservative ideologues as potential nominees for the highest court in the land. This list is teeming with individuals who have alarming anti-LGBTQ and anti-civil rights records, which should be disqualifying for any judicial nominee, let alone a nominee for the Supreme Court.
Notably, the President’s “litmus test” for SCOTUS nominees seems to have demanded zealous opposition to abortion and common sense gun control measures, as well as an unrelenting commitment to destroying the Affordable Care Act and a deep hostility to LGBTQ equality.
All of these positions are far outside of the mainstream, and threaten not only the legal rights but also the health and safety of LGBTQ people, everyone living with HIV, and other groups who rely on fair and impartial courts to vindicate their rights.
This troubling list includes some of the most anti-LGBTQ activists sitting on the bench today, including Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Judges Kyle Duncan and James Ho, as well as Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Lawrence Van Dyke, who was deemed “not qualified” by the American Bar Association due to specific concerns about his ability to treat LGBTQ litigants fairly.
Other nominees include elected officials, judges and attorneys whose careers have been marked by a hostility to civil rights, particularly those of the LGBTQ community. In sum, the number of nominees on this list whose records are replete with anti-LGBTQ bias is both staggering and terrifying.
President Trump’s unveiling of a list of extremists and ideologues as potential Supreme Court nominees should worry all who believe in the importance of a fair-minded judiciary. The impact that another anti-LGBTQ nominee could have on the Supreme Court would be catastrophic.
For over three years, this administration has pulled out all of the stops in its attempt to weaponize our federal courts in service of a dangerous right-wing agenda and at the expense of true justice and equal rights for all.
It is up to us to speak out against this assault on our system of justice, and be active participants rather than mere spectators in our democracy. We cannot count on the courts to protect us if we do not protect our courts.