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“The rights of free speech and free exercise… are not limited to soft murmurings behind the doors of a person’s home or church…
These guarantees protect the right of every American to express their beliefs in public. This includes the right to create and sell words, paintings, and art that express a person’s sincere religious beliefs.”
So said the majority of the Arizona Supreme Court earlier this week.
With this win, artistic printers Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski of Phoenix were freed up to conduct their business according to their deeply held convictions.
SOGI policies we’ve seen elsewhere were turned on these two who had—respectfully—opted not to create wedding invitations for same-sex weddings.
Attorneys with Alliance Defending Freedom stepped in—and religious liberty prevailed.
This is a big win for First Amendment freedom.
We should never have to murmur our convictions.
We should never be compelled to express views at odds with those convictions.Read More »
Facebook has removed seven people identified as “extremists.”
The New York Times reported it this way:
After years of wavering about how to handle the extreme voices populating its platform, Facebook … evicted seven of its most controversial users, many of whom are conservatives, immediately inflaming the debate about the power and accountability of large technology companies.
But the Times made a point of identifying them as “conservative.”
Are we looking at a more ominous threat?
The question is: Is this the beginning of excising all unwanted speech from Facebook?
We don’t have any assurances that this is not the case.
And we know well the political and cultural climate at Facebook. When you consider the fact that 2.4 billion people on the planet use Facebook, we have every reason to be concerned.Read More »
SCOTUS 2018 is shaping up as the “free speech” session of the court.
Masterpiece Cake ruling upheld the free speech rights of a cake decorator who did not want to decorate a cake celebrating a same-sex marriage.
The court sent a case back to a lower court involving a florist who did not want to create a floral display doing the same thing. Then there was the NIFLA decision—regarding the pro-life crisis pregnancy centers—where the court overturned a California law which compelled them to essentially advertise for abortion.
In Justice Kennedy’s opinion, the law forced them to “convey a message contrary to their deepest convictions.”
Each one of these cases was litigated by the Alliance Defending Freedom, which has emerged as the most important First Amendment group in the nation.
It’s a banner session for the First Amendment.Read More »
The best way to overhaul a culture is to change the way it thinks. Here’s one major way to change cultural thinking: stifle the free exchange of ideas.
This is what’s happening in California right now. Assembly Bill 2943 would make it an “unlawful business practice” to engage in “a transaction” aimed at promoting “sexual orientation change efforts with an individual.”
This pernicious bill is an attempt to silence those who want to help people with unwanted sexual feelings. Many religious and non-religious people agree that we flourish when we honor the basic design of our bodies for both sexual practice and personal identity. This bill is Orwellian: Silencing those who seek to provide help and wholeness to people who are reaching out.
California legislators ought to do what the people have elected them to do: protect free speech and enable people to live a free life.
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I’m a huge admirer of Poland. I love the way they have embraced their national identity, including their Christian heritage.
As an investor in Poland, I have admired their embrace of human productivity which helped to make Poland the best performing market in the world last year.
But this wonderful nation may be on the verge of a big mistake. It has passed a law which would illegalize speech about the small role which Polish collaborators played in the holocaust. Israeli leaders have reached out and officials from both nations are meeting in Jerusalem to discuss it, while Poland reconsiders this law.
Pope John Paul II, perhaps Poland’s greatest gift to the world, probably did more than any Pope in history to heal the relationship between Catholicism and Judaism. His compatriots should follow his great example.Read More »