The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments Tuesday for a case challenging California's Proposition 8, a referendum in which voters chose to ban same-sex couples from being able to obtain a marriage license from the state.
Before Proposition 8, same-sex couples were allowed to marry because the California Supreme Court declared in 2008 that the California Constitution granted them that right, essentially overturning another California referendum defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. California voters amended their Constitution with Proposition 8 in 2008 to undo that court decision and clarify that marriage can only be the union of one man and one woman.
In the case, Hollingsworth vs. Perry, the plaintiffs, two same-sex couples who want to get married, sued the state, arguing that Proposition 8 violated their due process and equal protection rights. A lower court and U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled in favor of the plaintiffs. more >>
A London judge upheld a ban last week against ads on city buses that suggest that homosexuality can be overcome.
British-based Christian group Core Issues Trust had hoped to run the slogan "Not gay! Ex-gay, post-gay and proud. Get over it!" on the sides of London's famous double-decker buses, but in a 35-page ruling, High Court Judge Beverley Lang argued that the ad could be used to promote homophobic attacks, which trumps the group's freedom of expression.
Massachusetts' highest court will consider a suit against a state school district by an atheist family who protests the usage of "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance.
The Massachusetts Supreme Court recently announced that it would hear arguments against Acton-Boxboro Regional School District regarding usage of the phrase "under God" in the Pledge in early May. One of the plaintiffs in the case is the American Humanist Association, with its legal arm the Appignani Humanist Legal Center helping to bring the suit forward.
Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the AHA, told The Christian Post that this case will be "markedly different" from past failed efforts to get "under God" taken out of the Pledge. "Instead of arguing that 'under God' in the pledge is a violation of the rule of church-state separation, it is explained as a specific infringement on the right of nontheists to equal protection under the law," said Speckhardt. more >>
The U.S. Supreme Court will review two major gay marriage laws on Tuesday and Wednesday and the court's decisions have the potential to change the entire landscape of marriage in America.
When the Supreme Court takes on the federal Defense of Marriage Act and California's 2008 Proposition 8 which upheld traditional marriage, the justices will be tasked with making some very important decisions. The justices can uphold traditional marriage on a federal level, they can block the ban on gay marriage across state levels, or they can keep the decision in the hands of voters in each individual state.
"There aren't many Supreme Court decisions that have the potential to be as transformative," said Erwin Chemerinsky, founding dean of the University of California Irvine School of Law, according to Yahoo News. more >>
John and Charica Daugherty, youth pastors at the Victory Christian Center megachurch in Tulsa, pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor of waiting two weeks to report a rape crime, and were handed five-year deferred sentences and no jail time on Friday.
"We respect the judge's sentence and we look forward to helping other churches and organizations learn how to best protect their children and promptly report child abuse," the Daughertys said in a statement following the sentence. "We hope these actions will help in the healing process of all who were affected."
Special Judge Bill Hiddle explained that the son and daughter-in-law of Victory Senior Pastor Sharon Daugherty, who leads the 17,000-member congregation, did not carry as much blame for the incident as their three other co-workers who were sent to 30 days in jail last week on the same misdemeanor charges, The Associated Press reported. more >>
The feminists have ratcheted up the laws against men to such an outrageous level that paternity fraud is not just ignored, but routinely rubber stamped by the courts. Whether one agrees with the concept of child support or not, virtually everyone can agree that jailing men for child support over children who are not theirs is morally wrong. Men are routinely sent to jail for falling behind on paying child support, even though debtors' prisons in the U.S. were mostly eliminated in the mid-nineteenth century.
The family courts and laws are set up in such a way that makes it very easy for a mother to collect child support, and very difficult for a man to avoid it. If a couple was married, the default law is that the man will be required to pay child support for any child born while they were married. In order for a man who isn't the father to escape this outcome, he must obtain a paternity test and take a series of legal steps in court. Most states only allow a short window of time for a man to do this. If a man is not aware of the child, which he may not be if his wife or former wife doesn't notify him of the child right away, he loses all chance to fight the child support, and will be on the hook for hundreds of thousands of dollars for the next 18 years until the child becomes an adult.
Courts routinely order these judgments even if the man is unaware what is going on. A March 2003 Urban Institute study commissioned by the California Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) found that "most noncustodial parents appear to be served by 'substitute' service, rather than personal service, which suggests that noncustodial parents may not know that they have been served." more >>