The United States Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a Christian college in Illinois is not required to cover emergency contraceptives it believes lead to the early termination of a pregnancy.
The 6-3 split vote, released late Thursday, gives Wheaton College temporary relief from the HHS' birth control mandate (while its case is pending), which it said violates the institution's religious beliefs.
During this time, the college cannot be fined by the IRS for opting to not cover emergency contraceptives, such as Plan B and Ella One, which can be taken up to 72 hours and five days after unprotected sex, respectively. more >>
Sudanese Christian mother Meriam Ibrahim is facing a new lawsuit after her Islamic relatives submitted a case on Thursday trying to prove that she is a Muslim, which would make her marriage to a Christian man illegal under Islamic Shariah Law. The lawsuit could further delay Ibrahim's hopes to travel with her husband and children to the U.S. and seek refuge.
Abdel Rahman Malek, the lawyer hired by Ibrahim's Muslim family, said that the Khartoum Religious Court will be reviewing their case "asking to prove that Meriam Ibrahim belongs to her (Muslim) father and family," according to Reuters.
The 27-year-old woman was spared the death penalty after an appeals court overturned the sentence in June, which was originally imposed on her for marrying a Christian South Sudanese-American. Ibrahim was briefly detained last week following her release from prison, with Sudan's government accusing her of attempting to travel with falsified South Sudanese documents. more >>
After reaching a lawsuit settlement, the Port Authority of Allegheny, Pennsylvania, has agreed to pay $20,000 plus $40,000 in legal fees to an atheist group that wanted to advertise one of its affiliates on local buses, but was banned from doing so.
According to federal court documents made public on Wednesday, the Port Authority of Allegheny agreed to pay the $60,000 the Washington, D.C.-based United Coalition of Reason. The atheist group had filed a U.S. district court lawsuit against the Port Authority last November, alleging the mass transit agency had violated the group's constitutional rights to free speech when they refused to carry bus advertisements that read: "Don't believe in God? You are not alone." The advertisements were meant to promote the newly-founded Pittsburg Coalition of Reason.
In their lawsuit, the atheist group, with the help of the American Humanist Association's legal arm, argued that the Port Authority had violated their First Amendment rights to free speech by denying the bus advertisements. According to the Tribune Review, the Port Authority had cited its 1998 policy that prohibited noncommercial advertisements from being shown on its buses, but the plaintiffs argued that the bus had previously allowed advertisements for churches, public issue groups and hospitals soliciting volunteers. more >>
Christian law group Alliance Defending Freedom has filed an appeal over a federal judge's ruling that a Texas school district is right in its decision to bar the Jesus tattoo ad from its jumbotron during high school football games.
"Having a viewpoint that school officials don't favor isn't grounds for censorship," ADF Legal Counsel Matt Sharp said on Wednesday. "When a public school opens up a venue for community advertising, it cannot single out religious messages that it doesn't like. The First Amendment protects freedom of speech for all Americans, regardless of their religious beliefs."
The Lubbock Independent School District has refused to allow the religious ad to play at football games, denying last year the request of David L. Miller, founder of Little Pencil, LLC, an organization that promotes biblical teachings. more >>
Christian hip hop artists from St. Louis, Missouri, have filed a federal lawsuit against pop artist Katy Perry, arguing her song "Dark Horse" is a copyright infringement of their 2008 gospel song "Joyful Noise."
The Christian group filing the lawsuit includes Marcus Gray, who goes by the stage name "Flame," and his producers Chike Ojukwu, Lecrae Moore and Emanuel Lambert. The plaintiffs argue that Katy Perry, along with Capitol Records, rapper Juicy J, and the producers and songwriters behind the 2013 pop hit are guilty of copyright infringement.
Along with profiting off of the original song, the lawsuit accuses Perry and her production team of changing the reputation of the gospel song. "Dark Horse's" lyrics have been criticized by some as referencing dark magic. more >>
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton suggested that the Supreme Court's Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby decision makes the United States akin to extremist authoritarian and theocratic nations that restrict women's rights.
When asked Monday about the Court's decision, Clinton, who may run for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, said, "it is a disturbing trend that you see in a lot of societies that are very unstable, anti-democratic, and frankly prone to extremism, where women and women's bodies are used as the defining and unifying issue to bring together people, men, to get them to behave in ways that are disadvantageous to women but which prop up them because of their religion, their sect, their tribe, whatever."
"Way over the top," responded Kirsten Powers Tuesday after hearing a clip of Clinton's remarks on Fox News' "Special Report." more >>