Barrett Won’t Say If Rulings Decriminalizing Gay Sex, Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Were Rightly Decided

Barrett Won’t Say If Rulings Decriminalizing Gay Sex, Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Were Rightly Decided

The Washington Post reports:

Barrett said Wednesday that she believed two Supreme Court decisions outlawing racial discrimination were correctly decided but declined to say the same for other landmark opinions involving gay rights and access to contraceptives. Those responses came under questioning from Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who asked her whether Brown v. Board of Education, which outlawed the “separate but equal” doctrine, and Loving v. Virginia, which legalized interracial marriage, were correctly decided.

Then Blumenthal pressed Barrett on Griswold v. Connecticut, which allowed married couples to use birth control, as well as Lawrence v. Texas, which invalidated sodomy laws, and Obergefell v. Hodges, which legalized same-sex marriage. “Again, I’ve said throughout the hearing, I can’t grade precedent,” Barrett said. “I can’t give a yes or a no, and my declining to give an answer doesn’t suggest disagreement or an agreement.”

More at the link above. Hugs

Barrett confirmation hearing day three: Barrett declines to say whether it’s wrong to separate migrant children from parents

In her testimony, the conservative jurist declined to share her legal views on abortion rights, voting rights and the Affordable Care Act, seeking to separate her academic writings from how she might rule if confirmed.

She also declined to say whether she thought it was wrong to separate migrant children from their parents to deter immigration to the United States. “That’s a matter of hot political debate in which I can’t express a view or be drawn into as a judge,” Barrett said in response to a question from Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

Barrett said Wednesday that she believed two Supreme Court decisions outlawing racial discrimination were correctly decided but declined to say the same for other landmark opinions involving gay rights and access to contraceptives.

Those responses came under questioning from Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who asked her whether Brown v. Board of Education, which outlawed the “separate but equal” doctrine, and Loving v. Virginia, which legalized interracial marriage, were correctly decided.

Brown, in 1954, was “correctly decided, yes, I’ve said that,” Barrett said. As for Loving, that 1967 decision “follows directly from Brown, and Brown was correctly decided. Loving, as well.”

Then Blumenthal pressed Barrett on Griswold v. Connecticut, which allowed married couples to use birth control, as well as Lawrence v. Texas, which invalidated sodomy laws, and Obergefell v. Hodges, which legalized same-sex marriage.

“Again, I’ve said throughout the hearing, I can’t grade precedent,” Barrett said. “I can’t give a yes or a no, and my declining to give an answer doesn’t suggest disagreement or an agreement.”

She added: “You’re pushing me to try to violate the judicial canon of ethics … and I won’t do that.”

Blumenthal appeared frustrated at Barrett’s non-answers, noting that her predecessors, including Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., were able to say in their confirmation hearings that Griswold was correctly decided.

But as Blumenthal painted a portrait of America where people could face discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation, Barrett pushed back.

“To suggest that’s the kind of America that I want to create” is not based on any facts in her record, Barrett said.

There is no doubt if she could give her opinion on a race issue decided by the court, she could have given her opinion on same gender marriage issues the court ruled on.    But she wouldn’t.   It has become clear she is going to decide cases not on the law but on her religious biases.   She belongs to a cult that wants the US returned to the 1850’s as far as minority rights are concerned.    She has made it clear her religion is paramount in her views, and she has said she can not and shouldn’t separate her faith from her decisions.    She belongs to a cult that feels some people have the right to tell other people how to live and what to do including personal choices in life.  The higher levels of the cult assigns people to tell their adult charges what do to.   WTF.   She is clearly OK with telling consensual adults what sex they can have or not have.   She is OK with denying two same gender people the right to have consensual sexual relationships, she would vote to make it illegal.  She like the entire Republican party is a journey backward, to the past, regressive and restrictive.   Hugs  

Liberty Counsel: We Will Petition SCOTUS On Obergefell

To these people somehow my marriage keeps them from worshiping their god.   My right to equal status under secular laws for marriage benefits violates their religious freedom while they can still go to their churches, do their rituals, pray their prayers, preach their myths, wear their religious symbols, and force their doctrines on the rest of us on medical decisions.   They are so filled with hate, with Christian privilege that not being able to deny me public services, to not be able to deny me equal rights under the laws, to not have the right to discriminate openly loudly, to not be able to oppress those they do not like is discrimination to them, and denying their rights.    This was a secular country, but those who want it run by their religion have worked very hard over the last few decades to turn it into a theocracy.  Ask yourself if any country that is a theocracy, that has forced religion with no dissent, ruled by the leaders of one sect of one religion is a country where the people have rights?   Look at the islamic countries, just replace Islam with Christianity.      Now replace Obergefell with Loving v. Virginia, is this still OK.  If you replace same sex marriage with different race marriage is it still religious freedom to deny the right to that marriage?  Or is it bigotry?    Clarence Thomas wants to overturn Obergefell based on religious grounds, but his marriage to a white woman was opposed by major religious groups based on their religious freedom.   Is his marriage going to be nullified to grant the bigots the right to deny him and his wife the right to marry.   If you replace denying public services based on religious freedom rights against  LGBTQ+  with the words black or jewish would it still be OK?  What about those who claim it is their religious right not to let black people eat at the lunch counter or ride in the front of the bus?   What is eating at me is how much these people have managed to do to chip away at women’s right, my rights, LGBTQ+ rights.    Nothing matters to them but their right to force all of us to obey their church doctrines.   Not the right to do them themselves their religious doctrines but the right to force the rest of us to live by them.   Their church forbids them from eating ice cream so I can not eat ice cream either?   Kim Davis was not asked to affirm the same sex marriage, not asked to go to the marriage, not asked to deny her god she was asked to do her job that she was paid to do for everyone one equally.      She has several marriages and committed adultery, would it be OK for someone like her to deny her a marriage licence because her lifestyle is against their religious beliefs?   If not, then it is not right to do so to same sex couples.     Hugs

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Liberty Counsel: We Will Petition SCOTUS On Obergefell

Via email from hate group leader Mat Staver:

Although the U.S. Supreme Court has declined to grant review of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals decision involving former Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis and regarding the legal doctrine known as qualified immunity, Justices Thomas and Alito appear to invite future challenges to the 2015 Obergefell marriage case.

Justice Clarence Thomas (joined by Justice Samuel Alito) wrote that the Supreme Court’s majority decision in Obergefell v. Hodges caused a collision with religious liberty and the Court must fix it. Four justices, including Chief Justice John Roberts, strongly dissented in Obergefell. Justice Alito predicted the opinion would cause significant problems for religious freedom.

Davis has continued to argue that she is not liable for damages because she was entitled to a religious accommodation (which former Governor Bevin and the legislature granted), and that her actions did not violate clearly established rights.

In 2016, Kentucky unanimously passed legislation to provide religious liberty accommodation for Kim Davis and other Kentucky clerks.

There has been no final ruling on whether Davis is liable for damages. Depending on how the case finally concludes at the lower court, Liberty Counsel will then file a petition to present the opportunity for the Supreme Court to address Obergefell.

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “Even though the High Court declined to take up qualified immunity, Justices Thomas and Alito are inviting future challenges regarding Obergefell and to fix the mess the Court created.”

tRump’s new SCOTUS nomination is a firm believer in a theocracy.   She is a firm believer in ruling based on her religion, not secular laws.   Like Clarence Thomas she doesn’t believe equal treatment under the law applies to everyone, and would gladly deny equality to women and LGBTQ+.  I listened to a breakdown of her beliefs and legal writings yesterday.  Remember she has only been a judge for three years.  Only three years, and now going to be on the highest court in the land making rulings the rest of us must live by.  This is what the goal of the religious fanatics have been for decades.  <blockquote>

The tweet’s mention of “build a ‘Kingdom of God’ in the United States” is an allusion to comments Barrett made in a 2006 commencement address at the University of Notre Dame Law School where Barrett was a faculty member from 2002 until 2017. Barrett told the graduating class:

“I’m just going to identify one way in which I hope that you, as graduates of Notre Dame, will fulfill the promise of being a different kind of lawyer. And that is this: that you will always keep in mind that your legal career is but a means to an end, and as Father Jenkins told you this morning, that end is building the kingdom of God. You know the same law, are charged with maintaining the same ethical standards, and will be entering the same kinds of legal jobs as your peers across the country. But if you can keep in mind that your fundamental purpose in life is not to be a lawyer, but to know, love, and serve God, you truly will be a different kind of lawyer.” </blockquote>

In four years tRump and McConnell have managed to fill the courts with people like her at all levels.   The only check was the SCOTUS.  Seems not for long.   Hugs

Eric Trump says his father ‘literally saved Christianity’

He didn’t give examples of how Trump managed to save the 2.4 billion people practicing the faith, or even what the president saved Christianity from. However, he did say that there was some kind of war going on between Democrats and Christians. Most of the elected Democrats in office are Christians. He didn’t provide any evidence, Christians aren’t being shot in the streets or thrown in jail. However, the first lady did complain she “doesn’t give a f*ck about Christmas decorations.”

Around the time the comments were made, allegations were surfacing that Trump openly mocked his Christian supporters as “full of sh*t.”

“They’re all hustlers,” Trump said, according to former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen.

“His view was ‘I’ve been talking to these people for years; I’ve let them stay at my hotels—they’re gonna endorse me. I played the game,’” a former campaign adviser to Trump said.

You DON’T know there is a god: Point 1 – Conflicting World Views

Great mythical gods I love this guys work.  I hate his taste in into and outro music, but I love his videos and I love his book.   His series on evolution for kids is phenomenal.   Total science done in understandable terms backed up by clear evidence.   There is no way to dispute it.  It is used in Science classrooms.   Hugs

Capitol Ministries’ Ralph Drollinger Expands Right-Wing Bible Studies Within Trump Administration

Capitol Ministries’ Ralph Drollinger Expands Right-Wing Bible Studies Within Trump Administration 

Earlier this week Right Wing Watch reported ​that Drollinger called elections a “spiritual battle” and said that only “mature” Christians are ideal candidates for public office. As RWW noted:

In previous writings, Drollinger has demonstrated little respect for Christians who interpret the Bible differently than he does. He has called the “social Gospel” that motivates millions of liberal American Christians “a perversion of scripture” and “not Christianity whatsoever!” He has called Catholicism “one of the primary false religions of the world.” He urges public officials not to take part in “syncretistic” events like the National Prayer Breakfast, arguing that by participating in events that combine different forms of belief, attendees invite God’s wrath rather than his blessing.

In “Oaks in Office,” his handbook for public officials, Drollinger wrote that “the critical and preeminent duty of the Church in an institutionally separated society” is “to evangelize and disciple—to Christianize—the leaders of the State and its citizenry.”

Trump administration officials have helped Drollinger raise money for the group, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has opened doors to help Drollinger set up shop in foreign governments.

Notice how they are now pushing this militant Christianity on not just department head leaders, but now on their subordinates.   The DOD just announced that officers can preach and share their faith with young enlisted, regardless of what the religious faith of the enlisted the officers are pushing Christianity on.   Do you see how Christian religious people have not only crept into government but are not happy unless they can force their doctrine on others.   It is not about their faith, their religious rights, it is about forcing others to worship the same god and obey the same religious rules they do.   Welcome to their golden dream, a theocracy.   I have read people calling them the US Taliban.    Hugs

DeSantis’ appointee to Florida Supreme Court belongs to Christian group using law to ‘spread the Gospel’

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

Florida Sheriff’s Office Punishes Deputy for Challenging Admins’ Proselytizing

Again Christian’s forcing their religion on others.   They do not respect anyone else’s religious beliefs, but insist on claiming extra special rights for their own beliefs.   I fear these people may get their way and the US will become more of a theocracy than it is.   Hugs

Florida Sheriff’s Office Punishes Deputy for Challenging Admins’ Proselytizing

But Harker’s letter was a problem in and of itself because it was peppered with Bible verses and Christian language. He even told the staff to “do as Scripture teaches.” Whether that was proselytizing is up for debate. Still, Harker’s Christianity was permitted in a way that would never be allowed for any other religion.

“I don’t want to be influenced any longer by this administration’s religious beliefs and religious fanaticism. I should not be forced to make quick, life and death decisions and possibly take away someone’s freedom based on biblical scriptures,” Holt wrote. “The thoughts that keep me up at night are ones that involve how I will conduct my lawful duties when I must juggle the U.S. Constitution, U.S. Bill of Rights, state statutes, Sheriff’s Office policies and now the Holy Bible.”

But in true Christian Nationalist form, Holt — the whistleblower, not the guy breaking the law — has been punished.

According to the Northwest Florida Daily News, Holt was “placed on paid administrative leave while an internal investigation is conducted related to his response.” By basically “replying all” to that email instead of privately raising his concerns to a boss who thinks law enforcement is a place to broadcast his religion, Holt violated department policy. He also raised a series of additional concerns with how the office is run — legitimate concerns that ought to be addressed.

But there’s been no public response to the problems raised by Holt. Not yet. After 25 years on the force, Holt is in trouble while the Christians running the place continue feeling justified in pushing their religion on everyone else.

There is more at the link above including more quotes from Holt’s letter.   Hugs

Again an authoritarian right wing leader tries to demonize a segment of the population to rally his base

Benjamin Netanyahu: “Israel Belongs To Jews Alone”

Benjamin Netanyahu: “Israel Belongs To Jews Alone”

Haaretz reports:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday the State of Israel belongs to the Jewish people alone, this in response to a comment by Israeli actress Rotem Sela, who wrote on social media that Israel is a country of all its citizens. Sela was commenting on an interview Culture Minister Miri Regev was giving on Channel 12’s “Meet the Press” program.

The Daily Sabah reports:

As the comments caused waves in Israel, Netanyahu again spoke of the issue at the start of a cabinet meeting, making similar comments. He called Israel a “Jewish, democratic state” with equal rights, but “the nation-state not of all its citizens, but only of the Jewish people”.