Monday, June 30, 2014
Legal groups which advocate for LGBT rights have criticized a Supreme Court ruling declaring that some for-profit companies may block their employees' access to certain birth control methods.
Several companies challenged the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) requirement that insurance health plans include coverage for FDA-approved contraception. The companies equated such methods with abortion and asserted that the First Amendment protects their religious freedom.
In a split 5-4 decision, the justices struck a blow to President Barack Obama's health care law.
Analysts noted that the ruling was not as sweeping as it could have been. It applies only to closely-held corporations and is based on a law approved by Congress, not a constitutional right to exercise religion.
Writing for the majority, Justice Samuel Alito ruled that the religious protections found in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 apply to for-profit corporations.
“A corporation is simply a form of organization used by human beings to achieve desired ends” Alito said. “Protecting the free-exercise rights of corporations like Hobby Lobby, Conestoga and Mardel protects the religious liberty of the humans who own and control those companies.”
Jennifer C. Pizer, senior legal counsel and director at Lambda Legal's Law and Policy Project, called the ruling “radically dangerous.”
The ruling “invites more misguided actions contrary to essential protections for employees, customers and the public,” she said in a statement. “It is imperative that the U.S. Congress amend the federal Religious Restoration Act to withdraw the blessing the Court mistakenly has given these companies to impose their beliefs on working women.”
“[R]ecent mistreatment of LGBT people in employment and other commercial settings still makes this extremely troubling. A business owner's religious objection to a worker's same-sex spouse or a customer's LGBT identity is not acceptable grounds for discrimination. It is more important than ever that states and Congress enact strong, clear nondiscrimination protections for LGBT people,” she added.
Gary Busek, interim executive director at GLAD, said that while the court's decision “makes clear that there is no opening for demands to be exempt from non-discrimination laws, we are very aware of the need to be vigilant.”
“Attempts to discriminate against LGBT people are increasingly being articulated as religious expression,” he added.
Shannon Minter, legal director at the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), echoed the sentiment.
“Thankfully … the majority recognized that even under its sweeping new rule, corporations cannot rely on claims of religious liberty to evade non-discrimination laws,” Minter said. “That limitation is extremely important and means that employers cannot exploit today's decision to justify non-compliance with laws that prohibit discrimination against LGBT people and other vulnerable groups, but we will need to be vigilant to make sure that principle is respected and enforced.”
Even though the court was rather specific that this doesn't allow for open discrimination based on religious belief, you know as well as I do, anti-gay Christians are going to try their damnedest to push the envelope on this one.
Sunday, June 29, 2014
The Vatican on Thursday released a document which stated that the Roman Catholic Church must be less judgmental of gay men and lesbians.
The document – called an “instrumentum laboris” – is a working paper for a planned October gathering of Catholic bishops to discuss family issues, Reuters reported.
In preparing for the synod, the Vatican asked bishops to widely distribute a 39-question survey. The 75-page document was based on responses to the survey.
The document states that while bishops remain opposed to marriage equality, the Church must adopt a “respectful, non-judgmental attitude towards people living in such unions.”
The Vatican has previously described being gay as a “disorder” and part of “an intrinsic moral evil.”
Pope Francis would decide on any recommendations arising from the paper after it is formally introduced in October.
And if you believe the Catholic church or the Pope is softening on homosexuality, all you have to do is be able to read.
This document doesn't soften the Catholic mandate against homosexuals, it just calls for the church to be more inclusive of children who have gay parents and it ain't out of love or respect, nor is it because the Pope wants us treated with dignity.
The real reason is because they believe children are being damaged by having gay parents and want to have a foot in the door to teach those kids Catholic dogma and anti-gay hate.
He said: “[America's] strength lies in our unity. And there are so many forces that are there to try to destroy that unity —the only way to bring America down.
“If you look in a lot of writings of the Neo-Marxists when they talk about the New World Order, they say there’s only one stick in the mud: how do you get them out of the way and how do you change them?
“They said there were two things: their Judeo-Christian faith, and their strong families. Those were the things that had to be attacked, and those things have been systematically attacked.
“There’s a book called the Naked Communist… it lays out the whole agenda of how to attack the family and the Judeo-Christian values, to weaken the structure of America.
“This stuff is not secret, you can read about it. You can see all the things that are happening in America today.”
He continued later: “When we talk about liberty and justice for all, doesn't that mean that people can be left alone, that no-one else gets to change definitions on them and change life for them?”
“They have no right to say to me that I must change the way I think in order to accommodate what they believe.
“That’s where the injustice comes from, and we have to understand that.”
And exactly what part of your cognitive dissidence doesn't grasp that gay's are people and US citizens as well and deserving of the exact same liberties heterosexuals have?
If your marriages and families are so weak, take some responsibility and fix YOUR problems, quit trying to blame a minority for your own lack of faith, love and compassion.
...and they let you operate on people?
Friday, June 27, 2014
After a lengthy campaign, the latest bid to legislate for same-sex marriage has foundered once again at the Finnish Parliaments's Legal Affairs committee. The committee, which also rejected a previous bill on the issue, voted 10-6 to push the law back to the whole legislature. Three of the four National Coalition Party MPs on the committee voted against the bill.
The bill will now be considered by a full sitting of parliament in the autumn. Finland is the only Nordic country not to have introduced a gender-neutral marriage law.
After the previous attempt failed, campaigners launched a Citizens' Initiative on the matter that gathered more than 166,000 signatures.
Christian Post blogger Michael Bresciani chided the Obama administration's support for LGBT rights, comparing it to calling a hamburger a hot dog.
Bresciani said he was “disgusted” and “saddened” to see the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv raise the rainbow flag during Pride Month.
“Facebook recently sported a picture of the gay rainbow flag flying alongside the Stars and Stripes outside the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv,” Bresciani wrote. “It is hard to imagine the flag of a minority whose preference is perversion flying next to the very banner of freedom that cost so many Americans their lives to defend, but this is Obama's idea of a righteous war.”
“Obama is no Alexander the Great or Norman Schwarzkopf and his chosen battle is the moral equivalent of sending armies into the backyard barbecues of other nations to insure the rights of hamburgers to be called hot dogs.”
Bresciani went on to compare increasing support for gay rights to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
“Nearly fifty years in prophecy and fully knowing that these days of decline were well prophesied does little to keep the feelings of great disgust and deep sadness from creeping in like the first waters of a great flood. Having been through Hurricane Katrina and losing everything, I know what is left after the flood waters recede. You don’t want to see this!”
To that I would say..."Woe unto those who think themselves righteous..."
Jesus despised self righteous people and this guy, couldn't be more self righteous.
Perhaps Christians should take into consideration the fact, we know we were born homosexual, despite that you would try and make us believe otherwise and Christ never spoke against homosexuality, not once!
He did say however, "as you do unto the least of these, you do unto me" and by quoting your own words: “It is hard to imagine the flag of a minority whose preference is perversion flying next to the very banner of freedom that cost so many Americans their lives to defend, but this is Obama's idea of a righteous war.”
You yourself declare we are "the least of these" by dubbing us a minority.
I might also add, homosexuals died defending your freedom asshole and did so while being persecuted by dipshit numbnuts like you.
The real test of a true Christian is in how they treat others and in this case your treatment is whats disgusting and deplorable.
The fact that your God saw fit to bereft you of everything in hurricane Katrina should be evidence enough, that you need to get your head screwed on right...maybe you could start by working with homeless LGTB youth!