In what many are already deeming a landmark decision, Canada's highest court has ruled that laws placing legal limits on inflammatory speech will remain on the books.
The Supreme Court of Canada ruled unanimously Wednesday that "hate speech" laws are a constitutionally valid limitation on free speech in the country albeit with the proper process in place.
Don Hutchinson, vice president and General Legal Counsel with The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, intervened on the case, known as Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission v. William Whatcott. more >>
Actor Clint Eastwood has reportedly signed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to overturn California's Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in the state.
The brief, which is due to be released later this evening, was also signed by a group of lesser-known Republicans, most of whom identify as moderate or liberal and who currently do not hold a political office.
In a rare instance in Pakistan, a judge granted bail to a pastor accused of blaspheming Islam because the complainant admitted that he had mistakenly accused him, attorneys said.
Karma Patras, a 55-year-old pastor of Bado Malhi, Sangla Hill, had been languishing in Sheikhupura District Jail since October after preaching on Christ's sacrifice at a funeral attended manly by Christians. Some Muslims present thought he was speaking against the Islamic animal slaughter ritual observed at the time, and Patras was confused when police showed up at his home later that day (Oct. 13) and arrested him on charges of defaming Islam.
Victims of false accusations of blasphemy in Pakistan usually spend months in jail without trial, and then many more months after conviction; if charges are dismissed, it does not usually happen until cases reach appeal, as most trial judges cannot withstand the pressure of furious Islamic extremists. Retraction of an accusation is also rare in Pakistan. more >>
A Colorado school district is standing by its decision to have a 6-year-old transgender student, who was born with male genitalia but identifies as a female, barred from using female restrooms at school, in spite of a discrimination complaint filed by the student's parents.
In December 2011, Colorado's Fountain-Fort Carson School District told the parents of Coy Mathis, who identifies with the female gender, that their child would not be allowed to use the girls' restroom upon returning from winter break at Eagleside Elementary School, located in Fountain, Colo.
Rather, Mathis would be allowed to use the boys' bathroom, gender-neutral faculty bathrooms or the nurse's bathroom. more >>
California Baptist University has been sued by a transgender student who was expelled by the academic institute for inaccurately stating that he was female.
Domaine Javier filed suit against the University on Monday in the Superior Court of California in Riverside County.
"CBU suspended her, excluded her from campus, and expelled her for one reason: she is transgender," reads the suit. "As a result of the suspension, exclusion, and expulsion, Ms. Javier has suffered economic damages, including loss of the honors scholarships CBU awarded and loss of wages." more >>
The Australian High Court has banned a controversial church from public preaching without a permit, arguing that such a ruling does not constitute as infringement of freedom of speech.
"It's obviously disappointing to hear the judges deny freedom of political communication," said Samuel Corneloup, who along with his brother Caleb preaches at the Street Church in Adelaide, Australia.
"We've always wanted to be law-abiding citizens. What we always wanted were permits to preach in the mall, and the council repeatedly denied us," Corneloup continued, according to The Australian. "We're happy that, with this ruling, the council can't reject us (for permits) because of our content, they can only reject us for obstructing people." more >>