Liberty Counsel: Appeals court upholds “In God We Trust”

by D. Bennett

The Liberty Counsel reports that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the nation’s motto, “In God We Trust,” does not violate the United States Constitution.

The Liberty Counsel filed an amicus brief with the court in support of the motto’s constitutionality.

The challenge was brought by Michael Newdow, who made headlines after his unsuccessful suit to get the words “Under God” out of the Pledge of Allegiance.

Liberty Counsel: Support the privacy of marriage petition signers

by D. Bennett

The Liberty Counsel has announced that it has filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking the Court to keep private the names of individuals who signed a petition that allowed a ballot measure which struck down gay marriage legislation in Washington state.

“If the Court allows release of information about the petition signers, those individuals would face the same persecution experienced by supporters of Proposition 8 in California”, the Counsel writes. “There, when records were made public by a local judge, marriage supporters received death threats, envelopes with white powder, property damage, harassing calls and emails from same-sex marriage activists and were forced to resign their jobs.”

ADF: Fla. library bans meeting rooms for ‘religious use’

by D. Bennett

The Alliance Defense Fund announced that it has filed a lawsuit against the New Smyrna Beach Public Library on behalf of a man who was refused access to a public meeting room for a “Religion in America” seminar.

ADF: Major SCOTUS ruling praised

by D. Bennett

The Alliance Defense Fund issued a press release praising the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizen’s United v. FEC, which will allow corporations to engage in political speech and advertising. The ADF cited the ruling as a victory for the First Amendment and for the “common folk.”

“Gone is the notion,” the ADF stated, “that just because citizens incorporate they lose First Amendment rights.

“Today’s decision is a step toward returning to the day when any citizen can stand and speak her mind—without a second thought about complying with some maze of opaque regulations—because she is an American.”

ADF: “Hartford officials agree to stop silencing constitutionally-protected speech”

by D. Bennett

The Alliance Defense Fund reports that its attorneys have reach a settlement with the city of Hartford, Conn., “that will ensure the protection of citizens’ free speech rights in public areas.”

The court case goes back to 2006, when a Christian man was arrested for “sharing his Christian message in public.” The city will now cease enforcing two statutes which ADF attorneys argued violated his free speech rights.

“Christians shouldn’t be penalized for their beliefs,” says ADF counsel Jon Scruggs. “The First Amendment protects all speech, including speech with which others may disagree.”

ADF: Supreme Court to hear Wash. state R-71 signature case

by D. Bennett

The Alliance Defense Fund notes (referencing a Bloomberg story) that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case involving R-71, the Washington state referendum which essentially upheld an “everything but marriage” approach to homosexual unions.

The case in question asks whether the Constitution bars the release of the signatories of a ballot referendum. Opponents of same-sex marriage, who gathered enough signatures to get R-71 on the ballot but failed to pass the referendum, argue that the release of names of signatories would open those people up to “harassment and intimidation.”

ADF: Montana law allows euthanasia

by D. Bennett

The Alliance Defense Fund reports that the Montana Supreme Court has ruled that “nothing in state law prevents patients from seeking physician-assisted suicide.”

The ruling paves the way for Montana to be the third state to allow doctor-assisted suicide for the terminally ill, following Oregon and Washington.