The Wisconsin Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Doe v. Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) Tuesday. This is a critical parental rights case in which parents are rightfully challenging an absurd school policy that allows the school to majorly overstep its boundaries.
The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) and Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) brought the case to the Dane County Circuit Court in 2020 after MMSD implemented policies allowing students to use a different gender identity at school by changing their name and pronouns without consent from their parents. The district even instructed employees to hide the information from parents.
WILL argues that it is the right of parents to make healthcare decisions for their children, and gender confusion can significantly impact a child’s mental health. “Transitioning to a different gender identity is a significant psychotherapeutic intervention that requires parental notice or consent,” said WILL. MMSD is clearly violating parental rights by attempting to make this decision for them.
Dane County Circuit Court Judge Frank Remington issued a partial injunction in 2020 that prevents the school district from “applying or enforcing any policy, guideline, or practice” that “allows or requires District staff to conceal information or to answer untruthfully in response to any question that parents ask about their child at school, including information about the name and pronouns being used to address their child at school.”
This injunction is not enough, however. It still permits minors to “transition” at school without requiring schools to notify parents or ask for their consent. The parents challenging this rule also requested to remain anonymous, but Judge Remington partially denied this request.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court is now deliberating on the case and will determine whether the parents can proceed anonymously and whether the partial injunction goes far enough.
During oral arguments this past Tuesday (May 24), one of the attorneys for the school district struggled to admit parents have inherent rights regarding their children, saying that parents basically don’t have rights when it comes to the issue of their child’s gender identity at school.
When discussing the need for anonymity for the parents, WILL attorney Luke Berg asserted that disclosing the names could result in bullying and even harm to the parents and their children. Attorneys for the district refuted that idea and asked that the names be released to all the attorneys and everyone in their 3 large law firms, contending that these individuals (amounting at least 1000 attorneys alone) would not leak the names. Justice Rebecca G. Bradley spoke up and said essentially that she disputed the district’s assertion, noting that one of the groups that had filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the case in support of the parents had their office firebombed after the leaked US Supreme Court draft opinion. Obviously, Justice Bradley was referring to us. (I was in the court room for the oral arguments.)
This case has huge ramifications not just here in Wisconsin but nationwide since it’s the first case in the country dealing with this issue. It could either help enshrine parental rights or severely compromise them.
For the sake of children’s well-being, parents need to be their primary decision makers, especially when it comes to questions of healthcare. Reaffirming a child’s delusion can pose significant negative consequences to their psychological development. They need the protection of their parents.
Chief Justice Annette Ziegler indicated the court would issue a decision promptly, which means we should certainly have the court’s final decision no later than June or July. In the meantime, please pray that the court rules justly and upholds parental rights.
In spite of the fact that experts say time has expired on enshrining the so-called “Equal Rights Amendment” (ERA) as the 28th Amendment to our US Constitution, a number of Democrats are still working aggressively to that end.
The ERA allegedly aims to guarantee equal rights for men and women. It reads, “equality of rights under law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” Proponents of the ERA seems to overlook the 1964 Civil Rights Act which already prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, among other things, and the left is no longer hiding that the ERA is simply a vehicle to enshrine abortion on-demand and transgenderism into our federal laws.
Many Democrats, however, are today refusing to define the term “woman,” despite the fact that biology and common sense provide a clear definition. This, of course, begs the question: what’s the point of the ERA?
During this week’s confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, Sen. Marsha Blackburn asked the judge to define the word “woman.” “Can I provide a definition? No, I can’t,” responded Jackson. Throughout the course of the hearing, however, Jackson repeatedly used the word woman.
Blackburn pointed out the danger in the left’s unwillingness to differentiate the sexes. “Just last week, an entire generation of young girls watched as our taxpayer-funded institutions permitted a biological man to compete and beat a biological woman in the NCAA Swimming Championships,” said Blackburn.
The public is told not to trust their eyes, but to call a man with XY chromosomes a woman simply because the transgender revolutionaries say he’s a woman. “The case of this collegiate swimmer reveals nothing less than a deep insanity that is now gripping our culture…It is a communal act of mass delusion,” said Albert Mohler.
Further perpetuating this mass delusion, USA Today recently included Rachel Levine, a biological man, in its “women of the year” list. Along with the rest of the cultural elites, the outlet seems to not know what a woman is.
What, then, we ask again, is the point of an Equal Rights Amendment? If men can be women and women can be men, why do both sexes need distinct protections? Democrats are pretending that the line between men and women is blurred yet want to solidify the line when it suits them, like when there’s an opportunity to push their progressive agenda in other areas. The ERA is a perfect example of this opportunist flip-flopping; proponents of the ERA claim that its passage is absolutely necessary for “women’s rights,” which in this context, conveniently translates into the federal codification of Roe v. Wade.
History has demonstrated time and time again that when we subvert nature and God’s design, our actions end in disaster.
As we prepare for the upcoming spring and fall elections, we should consider this issue and vote in accordance with biblical principles. Our elected officials should, at the very least, be able to define the word woman. They should honor God’s creative design and recognize that men and women were created differently and distinctly, each with a unique purpose. God does not make mistakes, and no one gets to choose their gender.
The good news is that there are Christ-centered candidates who reject the lies of the left and are willing to stand up to the progressive mob. We have an opportunity this year to change the trajectory of our communities and state by electing leaders who value truth over ideology, leaders who haven’t fallen prey to the delusions of the day.
If you need a biblical worldview on this issue, we urge you to “put your ears on” and “gird up the loins of your mind” (I Peter 1:13, KJV)and listen to Dr. Mohler. Take 23 minutes to do so and you will be glad you did.
National Religious Freedom Day is this Sunday, January 16th. This day was established to celebrate our ability to freely exercise our religious liberty since our country’s inception. Unfortunately, this freedom is now under attack in America, even from our own government. Between tyrannical vaccine mandates and other discriminatory practices, our rights have been severely compromised. We are hopeful, however, that the US Supreme Court will make sound decisions in a couple of critical religious freedom cases.
Ironically, just two days after National Religious Freedom Day, on January 18, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Shurtleff v. Boston. The question at hand is whether the City of Boston violated a Christian organization’s right to free speech by disallowing Camp Constitution to temporarily raise its flag on the City Hall flagpoles. The City had previously allowed private organizations to raise 284 flags. The Commissioner of Boston’s Property Management Department claimed that the City’s policy was to avoid flying religious flags in adherence to the First Amendment’s prohibition of government-established religion. Religious freedom, however, was never meant to be interpreted as shielding the public from any mention of religion.
Generally, the government is supposed to be viewpoint neutral, which means if the flag represents the speech of Camp Constitution, then the Camp and religious freedom should prevail. If the court determines that the flags on the flagpole represent the City of Boston’s speech, then the outcome may be different. We are hopeful the Court will recognize and uphold Camp Constitution’s right to free speech.
Wisconsin Family Action is actively fighting for religious liberty. Just last week, we signed onto an amicus brief filed to the US Supreme Court with regard to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) nationwide vaccine mandate. The brief states that unelected administrative agencies such as OSHA tend to neglect religious freedom by viewing it as “an afterthought, an inconvenience that stands in the way of their desired policy.” Religious liberty is foundational to our nation – not an afterthought.
Further, the brief notes that OSHA bypassed the traditional lawmaking process through state legislatures. Unaccountable government agencies circumvent legislatures too often, as OSHA has done here. Ultimately, OSHA’s mandate causes “indirect coercion [that] contradicts fundamental religious autonomy principles.” The Court heard oral arguments for this case this past Friday, January 7th, and we are now awaiting their decision.
Religious freedom must be non-negotiable. This right is a bedrock of our country and a necessity for human flourishing. On Religious Freedom Sunday, let’s pray for the preservation of this essential right in the United States. Putting our prayer and faith to action, we must also continue doing everything we can in the culture and in every level of government to stand up, show up, and speak up for our “First Freedom.”
On Wednesday, March 31, 2021, the Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down Governor Tony Ever’s illegal mask mandate.
“The 4-3 ruling was issued in a 78-page decision Wednesday morning.
Republican lawmakers filed suit in October on the mandate.
They said the governor did not have the authority to extend the state’s public health emergency beyond 60 days without approval from the legislature.
The majority of justices agreed.”
Read more HERE
Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling says, “This long-awaited decision by the state’s high court is encouraging. The rule of law must be respected, most especially in a crisis. The judicial branch has exercised its appropriate authority to check the power of the executive branch. Governor Evers will now need to work within the lawful limits of his authority.”