Election Wrap-up: Being part of the solution in Wisconsin

If you voted yesterday, you are deserving of thanks. You are part of the solution, not part of the problem. If you took seriously our frequent admonition to use your influence to get at least ten other citizens to join you in voting, you deserve a double thank you. A quick look at the numbers in many of the races here in Wisconsin shows that indeed every vote matters.  If you are a pastor and you distributed our materials or showed our video or from the pulpit you reminded your people to vote, thank you! You have no idea how influential your voice is when it comes to people voting. The historic turnout yesterday indicates get-out-the-vote efforts were pretty successful for all sides in our state. WFA’s  and WFC’s get-out-the-vote efforts, in partnership with you, were definitely part of the reason for the high voter-turnout.

One quick take on the election: it’s becoming harder and harder to overcome the liberal progressive numbers in Madison and Milwaukee. Their votes in these areas for their candidates this past Tuesday were incredibly strong. For conservatives to win statewide elections, the numbers voting for conservative candidates outside of these major population centers are going to have to be stronger than they were in this election.

Admittedly, with a Democrat governor and both houses of our state legislature controlled by Republicans, we might see a lot of gridlock. Assembly Republicans enjoy a 63-36 majority (a loss of 1 seat), while Senate Republicans hold a 19-14 majority (a gain of 1 seat). Republicans, in our opinion, need to be aggressive in forwarding a conservative, pro-family, pro-life, pro-liberty agenda and not fall prey to the temptation to just go-along-to-get-along and make deep, principled compromises with a governor who is likely to want a vastly different agenda pushed.

We will keep you posted as we learn more about how this session will start. Both Democrats and Republicans are caucusing today to determine their party and house leadership. Inauguration of the governor will be in early January, followed very shortly thereafter with the beginning of the new legislative session.

For more details on the election results and encouragement for a Christian response, listen to Julaine’s “Home Front” program from yesterday afternoon.

UW-La Crosse gives aging porn star $5K for presentation

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Chancellor Joe Gow said that giving an aging porn star $5000 for a 90-minute presentation to 70 students recently was “a real value” and offered a “rare perspective [students] don’t hear every day.” The topic was supposedly to help students like and be comfortable with their sexuality, including how they view pornography. The event was not advertised openly to the public on the school’s website or elsewhere, only on digital signs on campus. Money for the event came either from student fees or from the Chancellor’s office fund. Read the story HERE.

We’re covering this because it’s important that parents who have students at any UW school or any other publicly-funded university know what’s going on, at least in part. At a minimum, parents should talk with their young adults about the assault they will likely experience on these campuses regarding morality and decency and certainly on Christianity and biblical truth.

Kids are not lifelong projects to be “managed,” or burdens

Writing for the gospelcoalition.com, Cameron Cole urges parents not to see their kids as lifelong projects that must be managed to successful living or burdens that will one day be lessened when they leave the home.  Cole, who lost his firstborn son before he was 4 years old, reminds parents children are gifts from a gracious God—gifts to be responsibly cared for but to also be held loosely with gratitude.  Even when a child is especially challenging, remembering that child is a gift helps ease the frustration and helps parents learn the lessons God is teaching with this “hard gift.”

READ MORE HERE

The Bible tells us “children are a heritage from the LORD” and that the man who has children is blessed. Seeing children as gifts is difficult on those especially trying days, but taking just a few quiet moments to thank God for His gracious gift to you in your children and to ask for patience, strength and wisdom will go a long ways to a happier household.

Trump looking at giving dangerous transgender policy the boot

According to the online Daily Signal, the Department of Health and Human Services is reportedly considering scrapping Obama-era executive actions tying federal school funding to recognizing gender as a choice. The report this past Sunday in the New York Times on the proposed change referenced a leaked memo. Currently the federal government is operating, as it relates to Title X funding and schools, according to a recent lawsuit that undid what the Obama administration had done with defining sex to mean something other than one’s biological sex.

Read the full article HERE.

Julaine Appling, president of WFA, weighs in, “In Wisconsin, public schools have hidden behind Obama’s “dear colleague” memo on this subject, telling parents if they don’t give special rights and protections to students who claim to be transgender, then they will lose federal funding. The court case—and now hopefully a more definitive action by the Trump administration—will rip away this excuse for endangering students.”

Comparison of Major Party Platforms

As the major parties increasingly disagree on a number of foundational issues, knowing what the parties stand for is an important part of being an educated voter. 

Before you go to the polls, make sure you know the major tenets of each party platform by using our Comparison of Major Party Platforms.  Made in cooperation with the Salt & Light Council, it’s another key resource from iVoterGuide to help you be a good steward of your citizenship.

5 Myths: Gender Identity — What NOT To Believe

Adapted from remarks by Peter Sprigg, Senior Fellow for Policy Studies, Family Research Council to World Congress of Families – Chisinau, Moldova (Panel Discussion on “Gender Ideology—The Latest Attack on the Family and the Legal Challenges It Poses”) Friday, September 14, 2018

Mr. Sprigg discusses five myths about gender identity that may or may not be a surprise to you. For instance, Myth #5 states “The transgender movement is not a progressive movement.” The media and academic elites are doing everything they can to convince kids gender is essentially whatever they want it to be. That’s a lie. Parents should be a child’s very best defense against these potentially dangerous lies. To do that, they need to know the truth about this issue so they can counter the deceitful messages their children are regularly hearing.

Read about these 5 myths and the real truths about them HERE.

If you haven’t already done so, check out more helpful information and links for your family HERE on Wisconsin Family Action’s website — your go-to resource for marriage, family, life    and religious freedom.

Parents, Be Aware of Transgender Policy at Your Local School District

From The Daily Caller:
“The U.S. Department of Education is assessing whether a school’s transgender bathroom policy contributed to the sexual assault of a five-year-old girl. As Politico reports, Oakhurst Elementary School in Decatur, Georgia, allowed students who identified as transgender to use either male or female bathrooms.

“The department’s investigation could indicate that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is seriously examining whether school transgender policies are enforcing or endangering student safety.”

Read the rest of the article HERE.

Julaine Appling, WFC president, speaks to parents, “I am not at all surprised by this investigation. Frankly, I believe there will be others soon, as schools reap the consequences of enacting policies giving special rights and protections to students who claim they are the opposite gender. Parents need to be very aware of the policy in their children’s schools and should make sure they talk often about what they are encountering in the restroom or locker room.”

November 6 Election Information – What you need to know!

Election Day, Tuesday, November 6, should be a high priority item on your “to do” list. Your vote in this election is your voice and represents your values.

DID YOU KNOW? This election is for Governor, Lt. Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, U.S. Senator, all 8 Representatives in Congress, half of our state senators (odd-numbered districts), and all 99 representatives to the Assembly.  County offices up for election include Sheriff, Clerk of Circuit Court and Coroner (where applicable).

Churches and Church Leadership!
Click HERE to watch, share and/or download the powerful one-minute video “Honoring God.” We strongly encourage churches to share this video with their congregations.
Click HERE to share the free, downloadable bulletin insert with your pastor and church leadership that explains why Christians should care about voting. Printed copies have been mailed to about 700 churches. If your church would like some, call 800-378-7395.

Voting Information Just For YOU; It’s as Easy as 1, 2, 3!

1. If you have not registered yet, you can do so by clicking HERE.
2. If you need information on how to vote early in person or by absentee ballot, click HERE.
3. If you would like to know where your polling place is located, click HERE.

Check out your sample ballot HERE.

You may also visit our Election Central located HERE on the Wisconsin Family Action website for all of your election needs.

The Multiplied Power of One in Fond du Lac County

Daniel Degner, a student from Eldorado in Fond du Lac county, has launched a petition drive asking the state to remove a home in that community from the state’s Chapter 980 sex offender housing system.  Recently a violent repeat sex offender was placed in the home, a mere 1000 feet, with just one house between the sex offender house and a family home with four children ages one to nine. Current state law requires a 1500-foot placement restriction on Chapter 980 sex offenders; however, it is only applicable if the properties are adjacent to one another.

Read article from the FDL Reporter HERE

“This is a great example of the multiplied power of one,” says Julaine Appling, WFA president, “One citizen becomes informed and actively involved in his community and begins engaging others. Real change almost always happens from the grassroots up. In this instance asking legislators to address a law that puts repeat sex offenders in close proximity to young children is certainly a worthy effort.”

Those wanting to sign the petition should go to protectingwifamilies.com or email [email protected] or contact Degner at 920-204-4447.78 Nitschke Road Van Dyne.

How to ruin your life in your 20’s

Writing for desiringgod.org, Jonathan Pokluda urges young people to realize they are becoming what they will be. He offers seven lies too many believe, along with countering healthy resolutions. The lies are do whatever you want, live outside your means, feed an addiction, run with fools, believe it’s all about you, live for immediate gratification, and avoid accountability. The countering godly resolutions are do what God wants you to do, live below your means, starve your addictions, walk with the wise, serve others, hold out for God’s best, and don’t go it alone.
Read the article “How to ruin your life in your 20’s” HERE.

WFA president Julaine Appling says, “Helping young people understand this basic truth is one of the most important lessons parents can teach their children. They are becoming who they will be. The decisions they make while young will often have long-lasting and sometimes lifelong consequences. Acknowledging the lies and reinforcing the godly resolutions should be a top priority for every parent.”

Wisconsin: Vote early because…

Vote Early Because….

Allow us to finish this sentence for you….
Vote early because:

  • you could become ill on Election Day (Tuesday, Nov. 6) and unable to leave your home.
  • an unforeseen emergency could come up.
  • you could forget. (It’s been known to happen.)
  • your work schedule could change and prohibit you from getting to the polls in time.

There are so many more reasons we could give as to why voting early is a smart move such as inclement weather, lack of transportation, etc. The bottom line is we cannot know the future and, well, things do happen that are out of our control. Read this week’s Wisconsin Family Connection “Preparing to Vote” by clicking HERE.
Learn how you can vote early by clicking HERE.
Click HERE to register, if you haven’t already done so.
Click HERE to visit your Election Central to learn more about the upcoming November 6 election.
Be a responsible friend and share this information with others!

Eau Claire, Wisconsin, City Council introduces ban on conversion therapy for minors

On Tuesday, September 25, 2018, Eau Claire City Council introduced a proposal to ban conversion therapy for minors. The proposal says counseling involving a fee and designed to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, including efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same gender, is not allowed. However, counseling supporting gender transition or same-sex attraction is encouraged.  What constitutes a “fee” is not defined. The council will vote on the proposal October 9.

“So Eau Claire is going to be the next city to follow Milwaukee’s bad lead,” states Julaine Appling, WFA president, ” This ban usurps parents’ rights and keeps them from getting help for their children struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction or unwanted gender identity issues. It also trounces on counselors’ religious freedom. This won’t stop in Eau Claire. Citizens need to be aware this proposal will be in their backyard sooner or later.”

What you can do:

Contact your Eau Claire city council members and voice your opinion. CLICK HERE for contact information (phone and email).

Attend the October 9, 2018, City Council meeting and share your thoughts during the public speaking time before the Council members take a vote. The meeting will be held in the Board Room at 721 Oxford Avenue at 4 p.m.

Sept. 9-15 Celebrating Christian Heritage Week in Wisconsin

Late last month Governor Scott Walker issued a formal proclamation declaring this week Christian Heritage Week in Wisconsin. The idea of this week is compelling. Sponsored by Christian Heritage Ministries the annual recognition is intended to remind people of the truth of our nation’s beginning and much of our history—we were founded on Christian principles and have had many Christian leaders, who as Governor Walker says in the proclamation, “were statesmen of caliber and integrity who did not hesitate to express their faith.”

Since the mainstream media have ignored this proclamation and the public schools won’t cover it, the best way for people to know about Christian Heritage Week is one family at a time. This week is an excellent opportunity for families to spend some time talking about some of our country’s Christian Heritage. Visit wifamilycouncil.org for helpful information and ideas.

Racine Taxpayer/Parent Alert: Common Council Meeting tonight 9/4 at 7 pm

ATTENTION RACINE TAXPAYERS, PARENTS, RESIDENTS

Tonight the Racine Common Council will consider proposed changes to the city’s nondiscrimination ordinances.  In this series of proposals from Alderman Melissa Lemke they will add the words, “gender identity” to multiple areas of the municipal code.  They define gender identity as “the actual or perceived gender-related identity, expression, appearance or mannerisms, or other gender-related characteristics of an individual, regardless of the individual’s designated sex at birth.”  They also expand in the city’s municipal code definitions to “bisexual” “gay” “lesbian”, “queer” “questioning” sexual orientation” “transgender”.  The proposed language would also require that the mayor appoint one who identifies as a member of the LGBTQ community to the commission on affirmative action and human rights.

DANGER: This municipal code would impact housing, employment, and other areas as well.  The agenda tonight seeks to advance this proposal to the Finance and Personnel Committee.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Attend the Common Council meeting TONIGHT, 9/4, at 7 pm in Room 205 at the Racine City Hall, 730 Washington Avenue. Bring friends with you!

To contact your Alderman with your views you may call (262) 636-9171.  

Drag Queen Story Hour a real drag for families in Wisconsin

Public libraries all across the country, including in Wisconsin, have been having Drag Queen Story Hour. The group’s website says it “is just what it sounds like—drag queens reading stories to children in libraries, schools, and bookstores.” The goal is to “[capture] the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and [give] kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models. In spaces like this, kids are able to see people who defy rigid gender restrictions and imagine a world where people can present as they wish, where dress up is real.”

Wisconsin Family Action’s president, Julaine Appling, weighs in, “This is outrageous. A number of Wisconsin libraries held these events earlier this summer and others are likely making plans to host one. Parents, especially those who use the public library, need to find out if their library has held such a story hour or if they are planning to—and then get with other citizens to register an appropriate complaint with the library director and board. It’s time to speak up.”

The Target is on Jack’s Back Again

From our allies at Alliance Defending Freedom:

Jack Phillips, the Colorado cake artist who recently won a big victory at the U.S. Supreme Court, is being targeted. . . AGAIN.

The government’s actions against Jack are simply outrageous.

Here’s what happened . . .

On the very day that the Supreme Court of the United States agreed to hear the Masterpiece Cakeshop case in June 2017, an attorney from Denver called Jack’s shop asking for a custom cake.

The attorney wanted a cake that would be blue on the outside and pink on the inside in order to celebrate what the attorney described as his transition from male to female.

It’s not hard to figure out what happened next: Jack’s shop politely declined the request. The attorney filed a complaint. Government with anti-religious bias took action against Jack.

The State of Colorado has obviously learned nothing.

Just a few months ago, the U.S. Supreme Court condemned the government’s treatment of Jack. The anti-religious bigotry, unequal treatment, and egregious violation of Jack’s religious freedom were all rebuked by the high court.

And yet, the state has now doubled down on its unconstitutional effort to punish people of faith! They want to make an example out of Jack.

Jack has been incredibly patient. He and his family have endured a lot at the hands of the government. But they’ve had enough.

The bullies must not win.

We’ve filed a lawsuit on Jack’s behalf to put an end to the harassment.

We [Alliance Defending Freedom] are challenging the anti-religious bias of the government agency that is targeting Jack. And we are challenging the state’s war against the First Amendment.

Colorado is in for a serious fight.

Julaine Appling, WFA president, weighs in, “This news makes it very clear that those pushing the LGBTQ agenda will not stop until there is no impediment whatsoever pushing back against their dangerous, destructive agenda. To them, religious freedom that gets in their way—that is biblical Christianity—must be destroyed. This begs the question: is religious freedom worth fighting for? We definitely believe it is.”

VCY to air special Primary Election Report with guest WFA president Julaine Appling

A special Primary Election Report will air on VCY America Wisconsin stations at noon on Monday, August 6 and at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 7.

WFA president Julaine Appling will talk about the upcoming Fall Partisan Primary Election coming up on Tuesday, August 14, our convenient voter guide and much more. Tune in and be informed!

CLICK HERE to listen live online.

CLICK HERE to access your iVoterGuide for the August 14 election.

CLICK HERE to find out about endorsements, polling locations, absentee voting and much more!

Wisconsin Family Action Releases NEW Voter Guide before Aug 14 Primary Partisan Election

Is your candidate truly a reflection of your convictions and vision for America and  Wisconsin? iVoterGuide will be your biggest asset and tool that will guide you through the next election, answering every question that is important to you.

Wisconsin’s 2018 Fall Partisan Primary election is Tuesday, August 14—that’s only weeks away!  Your guide covers contested races for U.S. Senate, U.S. House districts, state Senate and Assembly districts and the critical gubernatorial race for Wisconsin’s Governor.

Compare candidates’ answers on over 20 survey questions.  Look at who has endorsed them.  You can see facts on the issues that are the most important to you, like religious liberty, life, immigration, defense, and more.

>>>>>Click HERE to learn more about and access your FREE, DOWNLOADABLE Fall Partisan Primary 2018 Voter Information Publication.

May we ask a favor? Would you take a moment to share this email with friends, family and neighbors so that they, too, may have this vital information before election day on August 14? Better yet, download, print and share!

JUST IN! Wisconsin Family Action PAC (Political Action Committee) has just released the first round of endorsements for the Fall 2018 Partisan Primary Election on August 14!  CLICK HERE to view the endorsements.

Not sure where to vote or who is on your ballot? Click HERE and type in your home address to find out the answers to these questions so you can vote your values!  We’ve also created a Voter Q&A resource guide for all of your questions regarding Election Day. Access your Voter Q&A HERE.

REMEMBER to bring a valid form of photo identification. Click HERE to learn what forms of ID are acceptable. If you haven’t already registered to vote, you may also register on the day of the election at the polls.

Wisconsin Family Action also stands ready to help you if you have any questions. We can be reached at 866-849-2536 (toll free) or 608-268-5074 (Madison).

Wisconsin Tax Holiday Runs from Wed. 8/1 to Sunday 8/5: Plan to buy school supplies to save $$

Do you need school supplies for your children? Take note that this year the Wisconsin Sales Tax Holiday runs from Wednesday, August 1, 2018 – Sunday, August 5, 2018.

A sales tax holiday is when sales of certain items are tax exempt for a specific time. During the Wisconsin Sales Tax Holiday, the following items are not taxable:

–Clothing, if the sales price of any single item is $75 or less
–A computer purchased by a consumer for the consumer’s personal use, if the sales price of the computer is $750 or less
–School computer supplies purchased by the consumer for the consumer’s personal use, if the sales price of any single item is $250 or less
–School supplies, if the sales price of any single item is $75 or less

WFA president: Conversion Therapy Ban “a bad idea for Milwaukee – or any other Wisconsin City”

On Wednesday, July 11, 2018, the Madison Common Council made a decision to usurp parental authority and call into question parental rights to raise children according to their own standards – including those who encourage their children to follow a traditional biblical sexual ethic by banning conversion therapy.

While the process of changing one’s sexual identity is often a long and difficult journey, it is nevertheless possible for highly motivated individuals.

Competent religiously mediated counseling for unwanted same-sex attraction is not inherently harmful.

Wisconsin Family Action president says, “The ban on conversion therapy was bad for Milwaukee and is bad for Madison or any other Wisconsin city.”

From WPR:

In a unanimous vote, the Madison Common Council moved to ban conversion therapy in the capitol city.

The ordinance, passed Monday evening, was sponsored by alders Shiva Bidar-Sielaff, Amanda Hall and Arvina Martin.

The proposal prohibits the practice of conversion therapy on minors where those services are provided for a fee.

Read the rest of the article here.

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION RESPONDS TO PRESIDENT TRUMP’S NOMINATION OF JUDGE BRETT KAVANAUGH FOR SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

MADISON—Monday evening President Trump announced that Judge Brett Kavanaugh is his nominee to the US Supreme Court to fill the vacancy of retiring Justice Kennedy. Trump has said regarding this process that his “greatest responsibility is to select a Justice who will faithfully interpret the Constitution as written,” noting that “[j]udges are not supposed to re-write the law, re-invent the Constitution, or substitute their own opinions for the will of the people expressed through their laws.” President Trump believes Judge Kavanaugh, meets those requirements.

“The American people care deeply about strong originalists on the Supreme Court, as evidenced by the 2016 presidential election,” said Julaine Appling, Wisconsin Family Action president. “We appreciate President Trump’s continued transparency and principled process for choosing the next Supreme Court nominee and are hopeful that Judge Kavanaugh will uphold the First Amendment and the original public meaning of the Constitution.”

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide, not-for-profit organization actively strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious liberty in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

2 Days, 2 Victories

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court breathed new life into the Arlene’s Flowers case, sending the case back to the Washington State Supreme Court to review their disastrous opinion in light of the Court’s Masterpiece Cakeshop decision. Washington had ruled that Barronelle Stutzman unlawfully discriminated against Rob Ingersoll when she declined to create flowers for his same-sex wedding.

Barronelle, however, had created flowers for Rob for a variety of events throughout the years. She only declined to design flowers for his wedding – an event that violated her sincerely held beliefs that marriage is only the union of one man and one woman. In a lower court opinion, the judge actually likened Barronelle to a racist convenience store owner who had “a policy” of refusing “to serve any black[]” customers. We have high hopes for Barronelle to finally receive justice and have her right to exercise her religious beliefs protected. Read this month’s Wisconsin Family Connection HERE to learn more about this case and our involvement on your behalf for religious freedom

Then, today, in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra, the Court struck down a California law that forced pro-life pregnancy resource centers to advertise for abortion; a win that gives free speech life.

The California law is yet another example of why we say Don’t California My Wisconsin.

All three cases referenced above were argued by our friends at Alliance Defending Freedom.

ADF CEO Michael Farris issued the following statement about today’s NIFLA decision:

“No one should be forced by the government to express a message that violates their convictions, especially on deeply divisive subjects such as abortion. In this case, the government used its power to force pro-life pregnancy centers to provide free advertising for abortion. The Supreme Court said that the government can’t do that, and that it must respect pro-life beliefs. Tolerance and respect for good-faith differences of opinion are essential in a diverse society like ours. They enable us to coexist peacefully with one another. If we want to have freedom for ourselves, we have to extend it to others.”

Justice Clarence Thomas wrote the 5-4 majority opinion, stating, “the people lose when the government is the one deciding which ideas should prevail.”

In a concurring opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote, “Governments must not be allowed to force persons to express a message contrary to their deepest convictions. Read Justice Kennedy’s concurrence HERE. Freedom of speech secures freedom of thought and belief. This law imperils those liberties.”At Wisconsin Family Action, we joined 40 other family policy organizations in an amici curiae brief drafted by David French in support of the pregnancy centers. In the brief, French concluded:

“Compelled speech is not the answer to cultural conflict. This court must not render professionals second-class citizens with diminished constitutional rights. There are few state actions more repugnant to the consciences of sincere, pro-life citizens than demanding that they advertise free or low-cost access to the deadly procedure they work so mightily to oppose.”

That’s why the work of Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) and our front line national partner Alliance Defending Freedom matters. WFA exists to promote public policy that ensures constitutional rights. In short – we advocate for you and your family in Wisconsin! ADF then goes after unjust laws like California’s in the courts to protect those same rights.

Look for our Wisconsin Family Connection, our 5-minute radio program that airs weekly on Mondays, to provide a more complete analysis of the meanings of these rulings moving forward. Click HERE to access this and other radio programs.

To help us further our advocacy work on your behalf, please consider taking advantage of our current matching grant opportunity (up to $25,000) right now. When you partner with us today, you’ll be lending DOUBLE HONOR to this momentous day for life and free speech! Click HEREto make a secure donation now!

 

BREAKING: #SCOTUS Hands Down Victory for Free Speech

Today the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled, 5-4, in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) v. Becerra, striking down a California state law that forced pro-life pregnancy centers to point the way to abortion.

Explanation: The Court turned back the state of California’s law forcing pro-life pregnancy centers to point the way to abortion. The Court ruled that the government was wrong to compel pro-life groups and individuals to express a message that conflicts with their beliefs.

Supporting the opinion of the court were Justices Thomas, Roberts, Kennedy, Alito and Gorsuch.

Dissenting were Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, Sotomayor and Kagan.

Justice Kennedy’s concurrence reads as follows:

And the history of the Act’s passage and its underinclusive application suggest a real possibility that these individuals were targeted because of their beliefs. The California Legislature included in its official history the congratulatory statement that the Act was part of California’s legacy of “forward thinking.” App. 38–39. But it is not forward thinking to force individuals to “be an instrument for fostering public adherence to an ideological point of view [they] fin[d] unacceptable.” Wooley v. Maynard, 430 U. S. 705, 715 (1977). It is forward thinking to begin by reading the First Amendment as ratified in 1791; to understand the history of authoritarian government as the Founders then knew it; to confirm that history since then shows how relentless authoritarian regimes are in their attempts to stifle free speech; and to carry those lessons onward as we seek to preserve and teach the necessity of freedom of speech for the generations to come. Governments must not be allowed to force persons to express a message contrary to their deepest convictions. Freedom of speech secures freedom of thought and belief. This law imperils those liberties.

Alliance Defending Freedom President, CEO, and General Counsel Michael Farris issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision today against government-compelled speech in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra:

“No one should be forced by the government to express a message that violates their convictions, especially on deeply divisive subjects such as abortion. In this case, the government used its power to force pro-life pregnancy centers to provide free advertising for abortion. The Supreme Court said that the government can’t do that, and that it must respect pro-life beliefs. Tolerance and respect for good-faith differences of opinion are essential in a diverse society like ours. They enable us to peacefully coexist with one another. If we want to have freedom for ourselves, we have to extend it to others.”

Justice and Compassion at the Border

Wisconsin Family Action concurs with our colleague, Vince Torres, president and executive director of Family Policy Alliance in New Mexico:

Any time politicians invoke the Scripture, my initial reaction is always to cringe—not because I believe our government officials should refrain from quoting God’s Word, but because they often misstate and/or misuse the Scripture out of context to promote their personal political agendas. Last week, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions had a cringeworthy moment when he cited Romans 13 to defend the administration’s forced separation of immigrant families at our southern border.

In Attorney General Sessions words:

“Illegal entry into the United States is a crime — as it should be. Persons who violate the law of our nation are subject to prosecution. I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained them for the purpose of order.”

For the record, I agree with the Attorney General that illegal entry into our country is and should be a crime, and that criminals who violate our laws should be subject to prosecution. I also agree with him that Romans 13 instructs us to obey the government as a God-ordained institution. However, I respectfully, though adamantly, disagree with the Attorney General that this passage or any other Scripture would lend support to or justify the separation of these children—some toddlers—from their parents.

Our immigration system is obviously broken and in dire need of fixing, but using family separation as a deterrent is not a moral solution, particularly for those of us committed to strengthening and defending the family. To those who disagree, I would respectfully ask you to consider this question: Are justice and compassion mutually exclusive? Biblical passages like Micah 6:8 tell us they are not, meaning it is possible to promote justice and, at the same time, extend compassion. In my opinion, the situation at our border calls for both and allows for both. We can simultaneously support enforcing our border laws and oppose small children being stripped away from their parents. It does not have to be one or the other.

If there is one thing we should all agree on, it is the fact that the children are suffering the most from this ordeal. Over the years, many have been stripped away from their parents. Many have been exploited by their own families to gain illegal entry into our country. Many have been victims of sex trafficking and abuse. And as I write this, many have now become “pawns” in a political chess game. As a nation, we can do better, and as Christian Americans, we should demand better from our government.

From a political perspective, this issue has become extremely complex due in large part to the spreading of misinformation, media spin, and political posturing by officials on both sides of the isle. However, let’s be frank—tweets and public statements will not resolve this problem. Our government—specifically, the President and Congress—need to get to work on a permanent solution that keeps our nation safe and keeps children with their parents.

Justice and compassion do not have to be mutually exclusive. As Christians, we know this truth well and we need only look to the cross to see this truth in action. The cross is the place where God’s wrath and mercy met—where God’s justice upon sin and God’s compassion upon mankind converged. So, in our efforts to be “just,” may we never forget the mercy and compassion we have received, and let us not neglect the opportunity we have to extend that mercy and compassion to others.

 

 

The Radical Truth About Pornography and How to Protect Your Kids

Too many parents are cavalier about porn and their children. The attitude that “it won’t happen to mine” is very dangerous. The concerned mom in the article we link to below calls for getting radical about protecting children. To be sure the porn industry is radical about exposing them to its vile corruption and making them addicts. We strongly urge parents to take this issue seriously and take action now.

Read “Protecting Our Kids From Pornography” HERE. (more…)

Take Action for LIFE: Tell President Trump to redirect Title X funds away from abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood

President Trump has indicated he is willing to redirect Title X “family planning” funds away from organizations that counsel in favor of, refer for or perform abortions—organizations like Planned Parenthood. The money would be redirected to federally qualified medical centers that do not counsel in favor of, refer for or perform abortions. In Wisconsin these medical centers vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin facilities and are located in urban, suburban and rural areas, while Planned Parenthood has just 20 facilities, with most of them being in the southeastern part of the state and in more urban areas.  Since Title X first became available in the 1970s, in The Badger State only Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin has received those funds.

The Department of Health and Human Services is taking comments from the public on these proposed rule changes.  Citizens have until July 31, 2018, to comment. Information on posting a comment is below. We urge you to take advantage of this opportunity to promote life and to promote these encouraging rule changes.

The link to the Federal Register is here: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=HHS-OS-2018-0008-0001

Please note this is a 60-day comment period, with comments due by July 31, 2018.

Written comments may be submitted to the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of Population Affairs, as specified below. Any comment that is submitted will also be made available to the public.

Warning: Please do not include any personally identifiable information (such as name, address, or other contact information) or confidential business information that you do not want publicly disclosed. All comments may be posted on the internet and can be retrieved by most internet search engines. No deletions, modifications, or redactions will be made to the comments received. Comments may be submitted anonymously.

Comments, identified by “Family Planning” may be submitted by one of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.  Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Mail or Hand Delivery: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of Population Affairs, Attention: Family Planning, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Hubert H. Humphrey Building, Room 716G, 200 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20201.

Comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.

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