As the Supreme Court's oral arguments on whether states should be constitutionally obligated to issue same-sex marriage licenses adjourned Tuesday afternoon, Heritage Foundation's Ryan Anderson said in a news conference outside the building that the likely swing vote justice, Anthony Kennedy, was "not persuaded" by LGBT arguments.
As many are predicting the Supreme Court's decision in June to come down to a narrow 5-4 vote, Justice Kennedy has been pegged again as the justice who is likely to decide which way the court leans in making the tough decision on whether the 14th Amendment requires states to uphold same-sex marriages and validate same-sex marriage licenses given out by other states.
Kennedy pointed out in the hearing that "one of the problems" in this case is that the traditional man-woman definition of marriage has been the norm for "millennia," while the LGBT definition of marriage as being a union between two loving and consenting adults has only existed inside the United States for a decade, as Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage in June 2004. more >>
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, considered by experts to be a "swing vote" in the gay marriage case that's expected to split the justices in a five to four decision, made statements both for and against same-sex marriage during Tuesday's oral arguments.
"The word that keeps coming back to me is 'millennia,'" Kennedy told Mary Bonauto, a lawyer for the same-sex couples challenging state laws that prohibit same-sex marriages. "This definition has been with us for millennia. It's very difficult for the court to say, 'Oh well, we know better.'"
Later in the day, however, Kennedy said that same-sex couples were seeking the same "dignity" and "ennoblement" as heterosexual couples. more >>
One line of questioning during Tuesday's oral arguments on gay marriage before the U.S. Supreme Court suggests a "wild card" compromise as one possible outcome.
While court watchers expect the usual five to four, liberal/conservative split on the court, with Justice Anthony Kennedy being the deciding vote, another possible outcome is a compromise led by Chief Justice John Roberts.
There are two questions before the Court in Obergefell v. Hodges: 1) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex? 2) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state? more >>
A Christian print shop owner who refused to print pro-LGBT T-shirts in 2012 has the constitutional right not to print messages that conflict with his Christian beliefs, a Kentucky court ruled on Monday.
After Blaine Adamson, the managing owner of a Lexington print shop called Hands on Originals, refused to print T-shirts for Lexington's 2012 gay pride festival, he was found to be guilty of discrimination by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission last year, even though doing so would have violated his religious conviction. Additionally, the print shop was ordered to serve future requests from LGBT activists.
The Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal advocacy group that defends the right of Christian expression, came to HOO's aid and filed an appeal of the decision. Fayette Circuit Court Judge James D. Ishmael Jr. reversed the Human Rights Commission's decision on Monday and stated the commission went above its statutory authority in siding with the LGBT legal group, the Gay and Lesbian Services Organization of Lexington. more >>
"19 Kids and Counting" star Josh Duggar spoke out recently to state that he believes there is "an agenda to silence people of faith, those who hold a dissenting opinion" about same sex marriage.
Josh, who works for the Family Research Council, addressed the issue of same sex marriage currently being debated in the Supreme Court, which could have national ramifications for the United States. Josh, who is married and currently expecting his fourth child with wife Anna, is firm in his belief that marriage is between one man and one woman, and that anyone who says otherwise is at risk of being silenced.
"Well, I think that right now in America there is an agenda to silence people of faith, those who hold a dissenting opinion. That's not what America was founded on. America was founded on respect, tolerance, and really not discriminating against people based on their religious convictions," Josh told CNSNews.com. more >>
Amidst the unrelenting bad news regarding freedom of conscience (see, for example, this report of an Oregon hearing officer imposing a ruinous $135,000 judgment on a Christian baker who refused to bake a cake for a gay wedding), it's refreshing to read a bit of constitutional sanity. My good friends at the Alliance Defending Freedom (full disclosure: I worked for ADF for a number of years and continue to speak at ADF events) just won a key decision in a Lexington, Kentucky trial court on behalf of "Hands On Originals," a custom printing company. Hands On Originals (HOO) refused to print t-shirts for a 2012 gay pride parade, and the organizers filed a complaint before the local human rights commission. HOO was one of three t-shirt companies the gay pride parade organizers contacted, and when HOO refused the order, the group was easily able to find an alternative vendor. The commission, however, ruled against the company, and the company appealed to the circuit court.
HOO is owned and operated by Christians who attempt to operate "consistently with the teachings of the Bible." In fact, the owners put in place a clear policy against printing messages that conflicted with their beliefs. The policy stated:
Hands On Originals both employs and conducts business with people of all genders, races, religions, sexual preferences, and national origins. However, due to the promotional nature of our products, it is the prerogative of Hands On Originals to refuse any order that would endorse positions that would conflict with the convictions of the ownership. more >>