Note; This column was co-authored by Andrew Walker.
No one in American life is more committed to religious liberty for all than the Latter-day Saints. We disagree strongly on crucial matters of faith—including the question of what the gospel is and what the church is, even over the question of who and what God is. But we work together for religious liberty, because we can have those debates while simultaneously agreeing that we ought to have the freedom to have them without government interference. We don't have to agree on whether Joseph Smith was right about golden plates to agree that Thomas Jefferson was right about inalienable rights.
A few weeks back, LDS officials announced their intention to craft first-of-its-kinds legislation that would attempt to balance the concerns of the LGBT community with the concerns of religious liberty advocates. The much-anticipated bill has finally been unveiled. So the question remains why we—and our Roman Catholic religious liberty allies—don't sign on to this strategy as well. We can't speak for the Catholic bishops, of course, but here's how we see it. more >>
Fans of the hit reality series "Bringing Up Bates" will be happy to know that the show has been renewed for a second season by UP TV.
The show features the Bates which is a larger-than-life family similar to the Duggars of TLC's "19 Kids & Counting." The family resides in Tennessee and explores the dynamics of marriage between Gil and Kelly Jo Bates, along with their 19 children, one grandchild, and two more on the way. The series was an immediate sensation, becoming UP TV's most popular original series.
"Since its premiere in January, 'Bringing Up Bates' has been a major success story for us," Amy Winter, EVP/GM of UP TV said in an email. "The series has grown steadily each week as more and more viewers, along with other family members, tune in to see the daily lifestyle of this uncommon, unimaginable, ever expanding but totally relatable, loving family. It's a show that entertains the whole family which makes it perfectly suited for our brand. We are very happy to bring it back for another season and look forward to sharing the new trials, new triumphs and new grandbabies in the upcoming season." more >>
It has been called "The History-Making Gay Kiss," as "The Fosters" TV show, which airs during prime time on the ABC Family network, featured the "Youngest Same-Sex TV Kiss Ever." Yes, on a so-called "family friendly" network, two 13-year-old boys locked lips, and gay activists and their allies are celebrating the moment.
GLAAD, formally known as the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, stated that, "ABC Family's 'The Fosters' breaks new ground with Jude and Connor kiss." For those who are not familiar with the show, Jude is raised by two lesbians, his adoptive parents.
Gabe Bergado, writing for The Daily Beast, claimed that the kiss set "a fantastic standard," one that "reassures all the real-life Judes and Connors out there that their feelings of self-discovery during those middle school and junior high years are valid." more >>
The city council of Charlotte, N.C., the hometown of world-renowned Evangelist Billy Graham, narrowly voted on Monday to reject a proposed expansion to the town's non-discrimination law that would have made it legal for transgender persons to use bathrooms and other public facilities designated for the opposite sex.
After hearing four hours of public input from supporters and opponents of the proposal Monday evening, the council voted, 6-5, after an hour of discussion, to throw out the entire ordinance bill.
The proposal would not just have given transgenders the right to use the opposite gender's restrooms but would have also made it illegal for Charlotte business owners to decline service in order to uphold their Christian beliefs that same-sex marriages is wrong. more >>
The father of Mohammed Emwazi, the former British citizen alleged to be the infamous masked executioner in the Islamic State's publicized beheading videos known as "Jihadi John," has labeled his own son as a "terrorist" and hopes that he dies and goes straight "to hell"
The Telegraph reports that since Emwazi was identified as "Jihadi John" last week, his 51-year-old father, Jassem Emwazi, has been so ashamed of his son that he's largely remained out of the public eye and has even failed to return to work at a supermarket 12 miles near the Iraqi border in Kuwait.
Abu Meshaal, a 40-year-old colleague of Jassem Emwazi, told The Telegraph about a recent conversation that he had with Emwazi, where Emwazi described the emotional distress he's had since his son first informed him that he was going to join the jihadi movement in 2013. more >>
Pastor Donnie McClurkin's family is mourning the loss of their sibling Cheryl "Cheri" McClurkin who passed away Tuesday.
Cheryl died from a heart attack at 4 p.m. on March 3, according to the pastor and gospel singer's representatives.
"The McClurkin Family gathered together today to say farewell to their sibling, Cheryl "Cheri" McClurkin who died from complications of a massive coronary heart attack," Donnie's representative said in a statement obtained by The Christian Post. more >>