The Engage Family Blog

Official Blog of The Family Policy Council of West Virginia

Posts Tagged ‘Liberty Counsel

Christians = Hate Criminals

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But, don’t take my word for it:

House Democrats have announced a vote could come as early as tomorrow on a “hate crimes” bill that supporters admit might allow federal officials to prosecute Christians who speak out against homosexual behavior.

. . . 

When a nearly identical plan was developed in the last Congress, Rep. Artur Davis, D-Ala., admitted during a hearing on the bill it could be used to prosecute pastors merely for preaching against homosexuality under the premise that they could be “inducing” violence in someone.

. . . 

WND reported previously that the plan was introduced by Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., who said, “The bill only applies to bias-motivated violent crimes and does not impinge public speech or writing in any way.”

. . . 

However, critics cite United States Code Title 18, Section 2, as evidence of how the legislation could be used against people who merely speak out against homosexuality. It states: Whoever commits an offense against the United States or aids, abets, counsels, commands, induces or procures its commission, is punishable as a principal.

via Urgent, full-court press for ‘hate crimes’ bill.


Written by Jeremy Dys

April 29, 2009 at 12:59 am

FL: More Former Lesbians Embroiled in Court Custody Battle.

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It’s a story that will begin sounding more familiar as our society and judicial system continues to steer away from moral absolutes and toward opinion based lifestyles and legislation.


The names Lisa Miller and her daughter Isabella and their custody battle are all-too familiar to us. Now you can add Kimberly Ryan to the list of names we will continue to follow in the news as she fights for her daughter.


Ryan, formerly a lesbian involved in a domestic partnership in Seattle Washington with a woman named Lara Embry, is now a born-again Christian engaged to marry a man. That’s where her court troubles began since previously she had an agreement with Embry for visitation of her 9-year old daughter after the couple split up in 2004.


When Ryan became concerned about her daughter’s visits with Embry she discontinued them. Embry then “demanded that a Florida court enforce the Washington adoption decree and allow her to continue visiting Ryan’s daughter,” according to the story on World Net Daily.


But one Florida court has already dismissed Embry’s petition, citing Statute 63.042, the states DOMA law, and other court precedent. Now Embry is taking her case to the Second District Court of Appeals in Florida.


Matt Staver, founder of the Liberty Counsel said, “The state should be allowed to abide by its current guidelines and consider the best interest of the child. Florida has the authority to establish its own policy regarding marriage and the definition of family. Florida protects its children by preferring they be placed in an optimal environment with a mom and a dad.”


And here is the point I want to make clear in this case and other such cases: individual states should always be allowed to make laws and then abide by those laws based on the will of that states people. If laws from any state can be enforced in any other state, what is the point in even having the law? This idea that the law from one state is enforceable in another state leans toward a socialistic government where sovereignty does not exist at all; which also means the will of the people does not exist.


Staver was right in saying, “The state of Washington cannot rewrite Florida adoption law and commandeer the state to enforce its contrary policy.”


This trend of judges overstepping their bounds to enforce out-of-state laws is nothing more than a hijacking of state sovereignty in favor of big government control. This is entirely against the Constitution which allows for states to hold to individual laws based on the voting will of its residents. It’s what makes each state and ultimately this country great


Stories such as those of Lisa Miller and Kimberly Ryan are destined to be more frequent in light of our nation’s current moral and political climate. We have attempted to remove all absolutes and the concrete foundation of family based on a father and mother from our society. Did we really think there would be no consequences?


Further Food for Thought:
A Matter of Time: What the same-sex marriage crowd isn’t telling us. « Family Voice

Same-Sex Adoption Case – Media Redux « Family Voice


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Written by Nathan Cherry

March 20, 2009 at 2:57 pm

Free Speech is Going to Cost You

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The intended understanding of “free speech” is nearly non-existent in America today.


Is free speech, as intended in the First Amendment a reality in America today? In my opinion it is perhaps the most misused, misunderstood freedom we have. And, incidentally, if we are not careful, it could very well disappear altogether.


The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States says that we do indeed have the “freedom of speech.” (Click here to view the Amendments to the Constitution.) Now, I am certainly no English scholar but, in my understanding that means I am allowed to say what I want to say without fear of retribution. That does not means that people have to like what I say, nor do they have to agree with what I say, but I am nonetheless free to say what I want to say.


So, for example, if I am preparing to graduate from school, whether high-school or college, and I want to thank Jesus for helping me to get through my studies and helping me to achieve academic success I am free to do so. Or, if I am at work and I share my opinion that homosexuality and the civil rights struggles of African Americans are in no way similar, I should once again be free to do so.


And if I were to share my beliefs or my opinions on these or any number of other topics and someone were to threaten me, intimidate me, or in any way try to coerce me to change my view or recant what I said, I should reasonably expect to be outraged and be promptly defended by some great champion of civil rights like the ACLU…right?


Try telling that to Erica Corder, Ryan Dozier, or Crystal Dixon.


Erica Corder is the Colorado Springs Valedictorian who was told to issue a letter of apology for mentioning Jesus Christ in her graduation speech before she would receive her diploma. After being intimidated by school administrators to write the letter of apology, which included the words “I realize that, had I asked ahead of time, I would not have been allowed to say what I did…” Corder was “allowed” to graduate. The case has been taken up by the Liberty Counsel and is headed for appeals court.


Ryan Dozier is the Yuba College student who was disciplined for speaking to fellow students on campus about his faith in Jesus Christ. He was told that “free speech” was allowed only on Tuesday and Thursday between the hours of 12 and 1PM, and that if another incident occurred he could be expelled. The Alliance Defense Fund has taken up the case and a state court has ordered the college to suspend enforcement of the restrictions that are currently under challenge.


Crystal Dixon was an administrator at the University of Toledo before being fired for submitting an editorial to the local newspaper as a private citizen. Her article disagreed with a previous article that the struggles of homosexuals and the civil rights struggles faced by African Americans are at all similar. The university first suspended her, and then fired her for her article. Her case has been picked up by the Thomas More Law Center.


In each of these cases Christians are being harassed and persecuted for their personal beliefs. If you don’t think so then consider the following. Would Erica Corder have been forced to write a letter of apology if she would have mentioned Allah in her graduation speech? Would Ryan Dozier have been punished and threatened with expulsion for telling his fellow students about his faith in Islam? Would Crystal Dixon have been fired for writing an article sharing her support for the gay community? The answer is an obvious and deafening no!


So, essentially, what has happened is that each of these people have been punished for their own personal beliefs, which, whether anyone wants to admit it or not, are shared by a majority of Americans. And the message that has gone out with each of these cases is that we are certainly free to speak our minds…as long as what we say is “politically correct” and agrees with the mainstream thought on each topic. Forget personal opinion and diversity of thought, let’s just all say the same thing whether we agree or not.


But the ACLU did come to the rescue of one person whose first amendment rights were violated. Big Bear High School student Mariah Jimenez was ordered to change her t-shirt by her teacher and then her principle, or be forced to stay in the office all day. What did her shirt say that prompted the action? Her shirt read “Prop. 8 Equals Hate.” Mariah was expressing her opinions on a subject and was told she could not.


Now, for the record, I do not agree with Ms. Jimenez. But I will stand firmly by her side and defend her right to express herself. I will stand with the ACLU on the issue, though I disagree with much of what they do and what they stand for. Because, in the end, the fact is that Ms. Jimenez’s right of free speech was indeed infringed upon.


You see the idea behind free speech is that we are free to disagree. Why did the framers of our Constitution put that Amendment in there? Simply because they were tired of being told by the King of England what they had to believe and what they could and could not say. They knew that in order for a society to really thrive it must have a diversity of ideals. There must be the free exchange of ideas and conversation. Without this element all that exists is a society of robots who repeat everything they are told. What’s so great about that?


Why is it that the right to truly free speech seems available only to the rich and powerful? Anyone in Hollywood, in professional sports, or in a position of fame seems allowed to say anything they want with zero risk. And on top of that we are expected to fawn and slobber over every word simply because this person can act, or can dunk a basketball. Well whoop-de-do. Just because a guy can strap on a helmet and catch a football does not qualify him as an authority on social issues. And just because a woman can bare her soul and perhaps other parts of herself in front of a camera does not mean she is an expert at public policy.


But, if it is ok for these people to speak out and share their views then it should be ok for everyone. And the grand thing about free speech and democracy is that we do not have to agree. We simply have to respect the ideas and views of others in a civil way. I detest threatening and vandalizing churches for supporting Proposition 8 just as much as I detest “gay bashers.” I will stand and denounce the idea of murdering unborn children just as loudly as I will denounce murdering doctors for performing such procedures. Two wrongs never make a right, as my parents use to tell me.


I am disappointed that the ACLU would pick up the Jimenez case for being an egregious violation of free speech and choose to overlook the Corder, Dozier, and Dixon cases simply because they are religious in nature. Religious speech, much to the dismay of the politically correct crowd, is just as protected as any other speech in this country.


If you cherish the right to speak your mind every story in this article should outrage you.


Further Food for Thought:

Could Democracy Be Getting a Black Eye?


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