NOM BLOG

U.S. Supreme Court Justices Signal Willingness to Reverse Ruling Imposing Gay ‘Marriage’

In a surprising and virtually unprecedented commentary issued on Monday, two US Supreme Court justices publicly signaled that they are willing to reverse the Court’s narrow 5-4 ruling in 2015 imposing same-sex ‘marriage’ on the nation in the Obergefell v Hodges case. In a procedural opinion issued this week in a different case, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote for himself and Justice Samuel Alito that the “right to same-sex marriage…is found nowhere in the text [of the Constitution].” He called it “an alteration to the Constitution” and said that the decision whether or not to change the definition of marriage should be left up to the states.

The declaration sent shock waves throughout the homosexual community. A pro-gay writer at Slate magazine minced no words about the importance of this development: “If Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed [same-sex marriage] is likely doomed.”

The news was welcomed by pro-family groups such as the National Organization for Marriage (NOM). NOM’s president, Brian Brown (who also is the publisher of iFamNews.com) said, “For many months, NOM has pointed out that we are approaching – if not already at – the point where the Supreme Court’s illegitimate, anti-constitutional imposition of gay ‘marriage’ on the nation in the Obergefell ruling could be reversed. Now two Supreme Court justices, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, have given voice to that very point. Make no mistake about it – the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court is essential to our continuing efforts to overturn Obergefell and restore marriage to our nation’s laws.”

It would be one thing if recognition for same-sex marriage had been debated and adopted through the democratic process…it is quite another when the Court forces that choice upon society…

Justice Clarence Thomas

Here’s what went down this past Monday: In a written explanation of their decision in a procedural ruling on a case, Justice Clarence Thomas took the highly unusual step of issuing a statement on behalf of himself and Justice Alito that by improperly reading a right to same-sex ‘marriage’ into the US Constitution, the Supreme Court “threaten[s] the religious liberty of the many Americans who believe that marriage is a sacred institution between one man and one woman.” The Obergefell decision, Justice Thomas wrote, casts people of faith as “bigots,” “demeaning to gays and lesbians,” “imposing stigma and injury” and “disrespectful to gays and lesbians.” But none of those things are true, he said. Instead, the issue of same-sex ‘marriage’ is one that properly belongs to the states, where policymakers could debate the matter including any accommodations they might wish to afford people of faith. That debate was short-circuited, Justice Thomas lamented, by the ill-advised, narrow 5-4 majority that decided Obergefell , Justice Thomas said “It would be one thing if recognition for same-sex marriage had been debated and adopted through the democratic process…[b]ut it is quite another when the Court forces that choice upon society through its creation of atextual constitutional rights and its ungenerous interpretation of the Free Exercise Clause, leaving those with religious objections in the lurch.”

It is highly unusual for Supreme Court justices to make any comments on a procedural ruling, let alone signal their desire to overturn a major decision such as Obergefell . So where do pro-family advocates stand in terms of being able to secure a majority of votes on the Court to overturn the illegitimate, anti-constitutional Obergefell ruling?

It’s always speculation to predict how a justice might vote on a future case, but here’s how things line up to me:

It takes five votes to secure a majority on the Supreme Court. So we start with Thomas + Alito = 2.

Fellow conservatives Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh both strongly believe that the Constitution should be interpreted as written and, thus, are thought to be reliable votes against the imposition of same-sex marriage. That results in Thomas + Alito + Gorsuch + Kavanaugh = 4.

Chief Justice John Roberts strongly objected to the majority ruling in Obergefell, but he can be fickle and certainly cannot be counted on to cast the deciding vote to reverse Obergefel l. So, that leaves us still at 4 votes to reverse Obergefell , with a question mark, among the current justices.

This brings us to Judge Amy Coney Barrett who has a long record of personal support for traditional marriage and has been sharply critical of Supreme Court rulings that articulate so-called “rights” that are found nowhere in the text of the Constitution. If past is prelude, then we have Thomas + Alito + Gorsuch + Kavanaugh + Barrett = 5. With Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court, her deciding vote to restore marriage could well be enough to persuade Chief Justice Roberts to stick with his original opinion and vote to overturn Obergefell as well.

Add this all together and you get a formula that, regardless of Justice Roberts’ vote, would spell the end of court-imposed same-sex marriage, and return the issue to the states where over 50 million Americans have already cast ballots to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Now, there are a lot of ‘ifs’ in this scenario and admittedly it involves a good deal of speculation. Still, it seems clear to me that the issue of the imposition of same-sex ‘marriage’ on this nation is now front and center once again, a development that makes the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett all the more important for conservatives and pro-family advocates.

On this, I am in complete agreement with pro-gay advocates and leftist publications like Slate magazine.

The post U.S. Supreme Court Justices Signal Willingness to Reverse Ruling Imposing Gay ‘Marriage’ appeared first on IFN .

New Video Makes It Clear Why Amy Coney Barrett Must Be Confirmed

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), a key ally of iFamNews.com, has launched a powerful new video highlighting the fact that confirming Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the US Supreme Court is critical for social conservatives. “All our issues are at stake,” the ad warns viewers, including marriage, life and religious liberty.

The NOM video powerfully shows how the left is reacting to the nomination of Judge Coney Barrett to underscore the importance of this battle. One leftist activist urged Democrats to take to the streets and “physically attack GOP Senators” if necessary. The activist goes on to say “THIS IS WAR!” The ad shows an angry mob surrounding Senator Rand Paul and his wife to show how real this type of threat has become. A tweet by former CNN television host Reza Aslan is shown with his warning to the country: “If they even TRY to replace [Ruth Bader Ginsburg] we burn the entire f*&%ing thing down.” Another activist wrote that if the GOP attempted to confirm President Trump’s nominee “we’re shutting this country down.” After showing a clip of Senator Kamala Harris, the Democrats’ vice presidential nominee, officiating a gay “wedding” in California, the ad urges Americans to contact their US Senators to urge the confirmation of Judge Coney Barrett.

Sources tell iFamNews.com that there may be an effort underway by social media giants to suppress distribution of the video. Many people have complained to NOM that they could not reach the video on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Readers can use the links in this article to watch the video directly.

The post New Video Makes It Clear Why Amy Coney Barrett Must Be Confirmed appeared first on IFN .

it’s going to be brutal




Dear Friend — Amy Coney Barrett is a perfect pick for the US Supreme Court. A devout Catholic, mom of seven and a gifted intellectual, she shares our beliefs on the issues most important to us – marriage, life and religious liberty. That is why the left hates her so much.

Help Us Confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett

NOM is all in for the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the US Supreme Court. Make no mistake that this battle will be brutal, but it also could be one of the most consequential efforts of our lifetimes. With Amy Barrett on the Supreme Court, we will have a solid pro-marriage, pro-life, pro-religious majority of justices. For the first time, there is a real possibility that horrific, anti-constitutional decisions of the past will be reversed. Marriage could be restored to our national laws. Roe v. Wade could be reversed. The possibilities are truly stunning.

NOM is launching two major efforts today to support the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett:

  1. We have produced a powerful new video letting Americans know what is at stake with this appointment in terms of our issues and calling on them to get involved in confirming Judge Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Please watch our video and then share it with all your friends and contacts.
  2. We are also launching a limited time 100% match of up to $10,000 in donations to the NOM Education Fund during the confirmation process. These critically-needed funds will be put to immediate use in this momentous Supreme Court confirmation battle, and are also fully tax-deductible.

WATCH OUR NEW VIDEO TODAY:

We’ve never had a bigger opportunity to advance our cause. That is why I am asking you and every faithful NOM supporter to make a sacrificial donation to help us fight for this supremely qualified judge whose confirmation could pay dividends on our issues for decades to come. Will you be with us at this historic moment?

>>> I’ll contribute $25 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $50 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $100 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $250 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $500 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $1,000 to transform the Supreme Court

>>> I’ll contribute $1,500 or more to transform the Supreme Court

The confirmation battle is already shaping up to be even more brutal than the Brett Kavanaugh fight. As our video makes clear, the left is going after her in the vilest terms, attacking her religious beliefs and even her family. They say she’s part of a cult, calling her a “Christofascist.” One activist even said on Twitter, “I hate her kids.” Another called for GOP Senators to be physically assaulted if necessary to stop her confirmation. I fully expect violent riots to erupt in major cities as we get closer to the confirmation hearings.

Help Us In This Historic Fight

As difficult as this fight is going to be, the next few weeks are among the most important we’ll face in years, maybe ever. I pray you will be with us to take advantage of this historic opportunity.

I know many of you have already contributed to NOM this year, but this opportunity is so momentous that I respectfully turn to you for help again. It is critical that we hit the ground immediately to shore up key Senate votes. Already RINO Republicans like Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski have signaled that they will abandon us and refuse to confirm Judge Coney Barrett. We could be down to one or two votes that will change the course of history. Will you help us capitalize on this moment with an immediate, tax-deductible contribution?

>>> I’ll contribute $25 to change the course of history

>>> I’ll contribute $50 to change the course of history

>>> I’ll contribute $100 to change the course of history

>>> I’ll contribute $250 to change the course of history

>>> I’ll contribute $500 to change the course of history

>>>I’ll contribute $1,000 to change the course of history

>>> I’ll contribute $1,500 or more to change the course of history

The powerful video that we have produced is part of a massive grassroots movement to pressure Republican Senators to do the right thing and support President Trump’s nomination of Judge Coney Barrett. She is an extraordinary pick, with an impeccable professional background and an inspiring personal story. Senate Leader Mitch McConnell pledges a confirmation vote before the election. That means we have roughly one month to do everything in our power to mobilize NOM supporters to help confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett.

In addition to making a generous financial contribution to NOM to help us spread the word, there are two other things you can do today to help confirm this extraordinary nominee:

  1. Please watch our powerful new video explaining how high the stakes are in this Supreme Court confirmation battle.
  2. Please share the video by email and social media with all your friends and contacts. You can use the buttons below if you’d like.

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History is counting on us at this critical moment. I know that you will be there for us with your support, and your prayers.

Faithfully,
Brian S Brown
Brian S. Brown
President

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National Organization for Marriage
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All or part of your gift to the National Organization for Marriage Education Fund, a 501(c)(3) organization, may be tax deductible as a charitable contribution. Please check with your tax advisor. 


Stop Pelosi: Sign the Petition

View this Message Online.
Dear Friend—We’ve got an urgent situation. Nancy Pelosi remains fully committed to using the coronavirus crisis to impose elements of her extreme liberal agenda, which could include special “goodies” for the LGBT community. We’ve got to stop her.

Please sign our petition urging President Trump, Senate Leader Mitch McConnell and House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy to stop Nancy Pelosi from hijacking the coronavirus crisis to advance her extreme liberal agenda.

SIGN NOW
The “goodies” that the LGBT community are demanding are very bad for the rest of the country. LGBT lobby groups are pushing many extreme, dangerous ideas that strip Americans of their religious liberty rights, put a lawsuit target on people of faith, risk the safety and security of girls and women, allow biological males to compete against (and dominate) females in athletic competitions, give those who identify as LGBT special legal rights, and force people of faith to abandon their beliefs if they want to remain in business, participate in commerce, keep their jobs or pursue their ministry objectives.

Please sign our petition urging President Trump and Congressional Republican leaders to stop Pelosi’s dangerous gambit.

What Pelosi wants to do is weaponize “Rahm’s Rule,” the prescript advanced by former Obama Chief of Staff and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel that Democrats should use every crisis as an opportunity to pursue ideas that otherwise could not be enacted. This cynical, destructive, approach to the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis cannot be tolerated. Already, Pelosi has secured millions of dollars for pet projects such as the Kennedy Center only to see them lay off employees after receiving the taxpayer funding. It’s outrageous.

Sign Our Petition To Stop Pelosi
NOM has had a keen eye on Nancy Pelosi’s activities for several weeks now. We’ve worked hard to shine a public light on her desires to use the crisis to the advantage of her allies, including big donors in the LGBT community. We’ve scoured all the legislation that has been considered the moment we could gain access to it. So far, we’ve helped to prevent Pelosi from succeeding.

We are fortunate to have allies like President Donald Trump, Senate Leader Mitch McConnell and House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy. They have been alerted to Nancy Pelosi’s gambit, and they’ve helped make sure that she is not able to deploy Rahm’s Rule. But she is certainly not done trying, so we must keep up a public spotlight on her.

Sign Our Petition Today
We’ve launched this petition drive so that President Trump and our key allies in Congress hear from thousands of Americans that they demand that Pelosi’s attempts be stopped. We want them to know that the American people have their backs and are not going to tolerate Pelosi using the health and economic crisis posed by COVID-19 as a tool to advance her extreme agenda.

We’re asking all NOM supporters to sign the petition today. In doing so, an email in your name will go to the White House and the offices of Senator McConnell and Rep. McCarthy sending a powerful message that you stand with us, and the American people, in demanding that Nancy Pelosi’s desire to hijack the current crisis to advance her agenda be defeated.

Thank you for your help.

Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

PS – If you are able, please consider making a donation today, which will be instantly matched. This doubling of your contribution will help us get our petition in front of more Americans. Thank you.

It's Working


Our push to urge Members of Congress to introduce legislation to protect people of faith from governmental persecution for living out the truth of marriage in their daily lives and at work is working. Thousands of people have reached out to members of Congress urging them to introduce and support the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA). These patriots know that without the legal protections that FADA would provide, faith-based nonprofit groups, small businesses, churches, pastors and priests, schools, charities and individuals will continue to be subject to targeting by government officials whenever they do not embrace the extreme agenda of LGBT activists and the left.

We need to keep the pressure up on Congress so that when they return to Washington after Labor Day they give us action, and not more empty promises. That's why I am asking you to please support the National Organization for Marriage with an immediate financial contribution. The plain fact is that we need to raise additional resources to push Congress and the Trump administration to provide the protection they have repeatedly promised.

Many NOM members have responded with help, and for that I am grateful. If you have not yet been able to make a contribution, I ask that you prayerfully consider one now.

If you have not yet contacted your member of Congress to ask him or her to introduce and support the First Amendment Defense Act, there's still time to act. You can click on this link to look up your Representative in Congress. (You'll have to enter your zip code).

The reality of the political situation in America today is that Republicans in Washington – from President Trump on down to the most junior member of the House of Representatives – owe their election to people of faith, who form the core base of political support that delivered both houses of Congress and the White House to the Republican Party. Despite this, we've heard little but talk from them since they were sworn into office this past January. We need them to stop talking and start doing. Introducing and passing the First Amendment Defense Act needs to happen now.

You can help NOM push for urgently needed legal protections by contributing to support NOM and by contacting your Representative in the House to urge action on the First Amendment Defense Act.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Donate Today!

Eleventh Hour Fight in Illinois

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

It's hard to believe that the legislature, facing issues like a $100 billion budget shortfall and the corresponding desperately needed pension reform, is spending hours of the taxpayers' time lobbying behind closed doors for same-sex 'marriage'!

But even if the legislature didn't have other pressing issues and higher priorities that they were ignoring, the proposal to redefine marriage would still be outrageous for two very simple reasons: it's bad policy and it's being pushed against the will of the people of the state.

Click here to contact your state representative today and let him or her know — in no uncertain terms — that the people of Illinois stand for marriage as the union of one man and one woman!

They didn't have the votes to pass this bad bill in the spring session. So gay 'marriage' activists poured MILLIONS of dollars into a lobbying campaign over the past few months trying to buy up the votes they need to impose their radical social agenda.

In spite of their efforts, right now it appears that a vote (if it is scheduled) could go either way. So it's absolutely critical that your representative hears from you right away.

Please act now to ensure that your opinion is heard in Springfield and that your representative voices and votes for your values in the House!

Unless we send this clear message to the legislature, they might think they can get away with sneaking the vote under the radar. They might think that people have become weary of tracking this long-fought-over bill and that this is their last opportunity. And if they pass that bill... well, I hardly need to remind you what the consequences would be.

We've seen how marriage redefinition leads to those who believe in traditional marriage being punished, labeled 'bigots' and 'haters' in the public square, and forced to be silent about their deeply held beliefs or face repercussions. And their children? They're taught in schools that the values planted in them at home are bigoted and outdated, the equivalent of racism!

We must not allow that to happen in Illinois! We cannot let the pro-marriage majority be relegated to a second-class citizenship status.

This is the 'eleventh hour' moment for this long fight. We can win a great victory, but only if you act right now to contact your state representative. Let the leaders in Springfield hear you loud and clear: the people of Illinois will not stand idly by and allow marriage to be redefined against their will.

Finally, after you have taken action today, please take a moment to forward this message to your family and friends throughout Illinois urging them to do the same.

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Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

Hawaii, Please Contact Your Legislators Today

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

We've all been incredibly moved to see the tremendous outpouring of support for marriage at the grassroots level all across the state of Hawaii. The rally last week at the statehouse was incredible — a reported 10,000 people attended! And thousands more have submitted testimony in opposition to SB 1, the proposed legislation that would redefine marriage.

Please contact your state House Representative to let him or her know to vote against SB 1 and oppose redefining marriage.

Several news articles over the weekend suggest that the House is considering amending the legislation to put in place enhanced religious liberty protections. While preserving religious liberty is certainly important, this points out the fundamental problem with redefining marriage — it creates a whole host of conflicts that tears our society apart.

Not only are people of faith punished for believing in marriage as the union of a man and a woman, but redefining marriage puts every citizen, especially our children squarely in the crosshairs. Anyone who refuses to support same-sex marriage will be labeled a bigot and a hater. For adults, that comes with severe consequences that could affect someone's ability to earn a living, practice a profession and even raise a family. And school children will be taught that they have the choice of marrying anyone regardless of sex, even if that teaching squarely conflicts with what the child is taught at home or in church.

You see, once marriage is redefined then true marriage as we've always known it ceases to exist. There would be only one institution of 'marriage' recognized by the law — and it would be this new genderless version. Everyone will be governed by this new construct of 'marriage,' whether you like it or not.

The only way to avoid the inevitable clash and impairment of civil rights is to reject redefining marriage. Any attempt to mitigate the damage through passage of "religious liberty protections" will inevitably leave most unprotected and eventually leave even those covered without the protections that were promised.

Please act today — use this link to send an urgent message to your representative about this very important issue. And even if you've already called your legislator, call again to remind him or her that you remain strongly opposed to SB 1 redefining marriage.

And after you have taken a minute or two to contact your legislators, please take just a moment more to forward this message to your family and friends so they can do the same.

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May God bless you and your family,

Brian S. Brown

Victory is Just Hours Away

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

In just a few hours, the polls will open in Virginia and voters will make their decision on electing their next Governor. The race is very close between Ken Cuccinelli, a principled pro-marriage, pro-life champion, and Terry McAuliffe, the discredited former chief of the Clinton Administration. Turnout is key and every vote counts.

Please vote tomorrow, and vote for Ken Cuccinelli, along with his running mate, E.W. Jackson for Lt. Governor.

The importance of this race goes far beyond the borders of the Commonwealth of Virginia. It will help set the tone for the 2014 midterm elections, and will be closely watched and analyzed by candidates, consultants and party leaders on both sides of the aisle.

Electing a pro-marriage champion like Ken Cuccinelli would be a great blessing. It would make it easier for other conservatives to attract support from national party leaders and donors. Though he appears to be narrowly behind, Cuccinelli could pull ahead with a strong turnout of conservatives.

Please do not let anything prevent you from getting out to vote tomorrow for Ken Cuccinelli and E.W. Jackson, and urge all your friends, neighbors and colleagues in Virginia to do the same.

Help get out the vote! Share this email:

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Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

Anderson: "The ENDA Agenda"

On Thursday at The National Review Online, Ryan T. Anderson from Heritage - and co-author of What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense - took on "The ENDA Agenda."

Ryan AndersonRyan points out a remarkable confluence where "conservatives and libertarians alike oppose this bill," explaining why:

Of course, employers should respect the intrinsic dignity of all their employees. But ENDA is bad public policy. Its threats to our freedoms unite civil libertarians concerned about free speech and religious liberty, free marketers concerned about freedom of contract and government interference in the marketplace, and social conservatives concerned about marriage and culture[.]

Ryan then spells out the connection between ENDA and threats to traditional marriage believers on the basis of precedents we've seen set by local and state legislation of a similar kind to ENDA:

It is hard to square ENDA’s basic purpose with any robust protection of citizens’ rights to speak freely of religious or moral convictions about marriage and sexuality. Indeed Americans are paying the price where their state or local governments have passed sexual-orientation and gender-identity statutes.

You can read the entire piece here.

Heritage Releases New Report on ENDA

In addition to the resources we shared earlier, our readers may want to check out The Heritage Foundation's new backgrounder report on the "Employee Non-Discrimination Act of 2013" (ENDA). [Click here to read our action alert about this bill.]

The new report from Heritageauthored by Ryan T. Anderson, is (like the "fact sheet" we posted earlier) entitled "ENDA Threatens Fundamental Civil Liberties."

Here's just an excerpt:

[ENDA] would further weaken the marriage culture and the ability of citizens and their associations to affirm that marriage is the union of a man and a woman and that sexual relations are reserved for marriage so understood.[14] ENDA would treat these convictions as if they were bigotry.

Furthermore, ENDA would ban decisions based on moral views common to the Abrahamic faith traditions and to great thinkers from Plato to Kant as unjust discrimination. Whether by religion, reason, or experience, many people of goodwill believe that our bodies are an essential part of who we are. On this view, maleness and femaleness are not arbitrary constructs but objective ways of being human to be valued and affirmed, not rejected or altered. Thus, our sexual embodiment as male and female goes to the heart of what marriage is: a union of sexually complementary spouses. Again, however, ENDA would deem such judgments irrational and unlawful.

You can click here to read or download the report and study it before contacting your legislators.

Crunch Time in Illinois: Vote to Redefine Marriage Reportedly to Be Scheduled for Next Week

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

Several news reports and discussions with Illinois pro-family leaders point to backers of same-sex marriage bringing the issue to the floor of the state House of Representatives for a vote next week.

This is crunch timeplease contact your state House Representative immediately to urge him or her to vote against redefining marriage.

The vote is too close to call and could go either way. Even backers of same-sex 'marriage' admit they don't yet have the votes. It's critically important that legislators hear from you right away.

Preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman is an incredibly important thing to do. Doing so keeps the focus of marriage on what's right for children, in addition to the benefits to the couple. The social science is crystal clear and confirms our own personal experience — children have the best chance of thriving when they experience the love of both a mother and a father.

Men and women make unique, irreplaceable, contributions to parenting. Both genders are needed for human flourishing. Backers of redefining marriage want to shift the purpose of marriage away from its central role in forming strong families and onto a public recognition of romantic relationships. That's a very slippery slope to travel.

Once we say that marriage simply is the state's recognition of a loving and committed relationship, we've lost any principled argument to limit it to two people, or to prevent other romantic entanglements from being called 'marriage' as well. This will be a very destabilizing force on society at a time when we should be working to strengthen families. Children have suffered decades of abandonment from absent fathers. Now with same-sex 'marriage' they are going to be told that fathers don't really matter after all. Or mothers for that matter, either.

That is the wrong message to deliver to our children and grandchildren.

Furthermore, whenever marriage is redefined people who believe in traditional marriage as God designed it are punished. Anyone who cannot accept this radical new idea of 'marriage' will soon find themselves in conflict with the law. Individuals have been sued and fined. Small businesses have been forced to close. Charities have shut down. The record is filled with examples of people being punished because their views about marriage come in conflict with the law. Tragically, it's religious freedom that is the loser.

Do you remember back to the controversy over Chick-Fil-A's CEO saying that he believed marriage should be the union of one man and one woman? The very thought sparked a furor among homosexual groups and their political allies. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel declared that Chick-Fil-A would never be allowed to do business in Chicago. All because their CEO supports traditional marriage!

So don't let anyone tell you otherwise — if marriage if redefined, there is going to be real harm inflicted on individuals, businesses and religious groups.

The future of marriage in Illinois hangs in the balance. We can win a great victory if you act right now to contact your state representative. If we fail to mobilize the faithful, we could well lose — and suffer the consequences for years to come.

Please, time is of the essence. I urge you to act today.

Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

The ENDA Rational Argument

Proponents of the Employee Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) which is approaching a vote in the Senate are quick to dismiss arguments that the bill may be a Trojan horse for the same-sex marriage agenda.

(This is a tactic with which those of us in the marriage debate are very familiar. When an argument for traditional marriage is first made, it is scoffed at and dismissed outright. When that argument is then proven to be valid and true, it is studiously ignored. It is the equivalent in public discourse of putting your fingers in your ears and humming.)

EmployeesBut the arguments for marriage will not go away simply by activists' pretending they don't exist.

And neither will arguments proving ENDA to be a threat to marriage.

A great resource outlining such arguments has just been released this week over at the website of The Heritage Foundation.

The factsheet entitled "ENDA Threatens Fundamental Civil Liberties" points out:

ENDA would further weaken the marriage culture and the ability of civil society to affirm that marriage is the union of a man and a woman, and that maleness and femaleness are not arbitrary constructs but objective ways of being human. ENDA would treat these moral convictions as if they were bigotry.

Download the factsheet for yourself here.

And while you're at Heritage, you can also check out some other resources on ENDA.

For example, there is a lengthy paper entitled ENDA and the Path to Same-Sex Marriage from back in 2009 which, along with its Executive Summary, demonstrates how even same-sex marriage activists themselves have claimed "legislation like ENDA as a key step on the 'incremental' path to same-sex marriage":

[L]aws like ENDA have already proved to be an important step toward legal recog­nition for homosexual unions in several states throughout the country. In states including Ver­mont, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Cali­fornia, Connecticut, and Iowa, courts have cited sexual orientation nondiscrimination laws in decisions mandating same-sex marriage or some other form of legal recognition for homosexual unions. And no state has legislatively redefined marriage without first enacting a sexual orientation nondiscrimination law [SOURCE].


Once you've gotten appraised of these arguments which are only the beginning of the rationale for why ENDA is such dangerous legislation, click here to find out how you can help make sure that this law is rejected and Americans' first amendment rights are protected.

Thomas Peters: "Reflections on my Time Away"

[Our dear friend and colleague Thomas Peters has offered us these reflections on his injury and recovery process, and asked that we share them with our readers. We're only too happy to do so. Please continue to pray with us for Thomas, his wife, and all his family and friends. - Eds.] 

Thomas PetersOn a Friday in July I awoke in the early morning hours to someone beating on my back with their fists. I was lying on a bed in a place I did not recognize and I was in excruciating pain. It was a kind of pain I had never experienced before and did not understand. There was a tube down my throat and my body felt incomplete, as if much of it was missing. I came to realize in the hours that followed, the man beating on my back with his fists was a nurse, and he was trying to dislodge some of the fluid that was filling up my lungs as the result of the diving accident I had sustained three days previously, an accident that had fractured my fifth vertebrae and had given me a severe spinal cord injury, an injury that has changed the course of my life forever.

I have no memory of the accident itself. By God's grace, someone spotted me floating face-down in the water and started dragging me to the shore. Had I not been seen, I would have surely died. By God's grace, I was injured on one of the only two days of the year when a group of EMTs gathered less than a mile away for training, so I received prompt medical care for my drowning damage. Had it not been that particular day, help would have been about twenty minutes away and I would have sustained brain damage. And by God's grace there was a field nearby large enough for a rescue helicopter to land and transport me to the University of Maryland Medical Center's Shock Trauma Center, the best unit of its kind in North America. Had I not received the benefit of the best possible care so soon, my recovery would have been unalterably impaired.

Recovery was, and is, hard. It took six weeks to patch me up to a medically stable position suitable enough to transfer me to a rehabilitation center in Washington, D.C. For six weeks in Baltimore, nurses and doctors battled infections and secretions to heal the damage my lungs had suffered from ingesting filthy water. I was placed in a metal halo in an effort to save my fractured vertebrae. And when that effort ultimately failed, I underwent a two-day surgery to replace the damaged vertebrae with a titanium cage. The surgeons also fused my fourth and sixth vertebrates to strengthen my neck. I was intubated, given a tracheotomy, re-intubated, and put back on the tracheotomy. A steady stream of friends and family visited me during this time to lift my spirits and to share tears and smiles. But no one was more faithful than my wife Natalie; she did not leave my side my entire time in the Intensive Care Unit.

A major accident is an invitation to both physical and spiritual recovery. I have never felt God's presence as much as I do since the accident. People will say that accidents like mine should call into question God's mercy or even His existence. But for me, the fact that I survived my injury is the greatest evidence I have ever experienced of God's mercy and providence. I believe God allowed my accident to happen and that He chose to help me survive that accident and every day gives me the opportunity to be blessed through it.

The accident has taught me the essential value defended by the principle of subsidiarity: the value of family and friends as the first line of defense when things go badly. My family and friends have come forward to help my wife and I in ways that have taken our breadth away. They brought us meals, helped pack and move our home, loaned us their cars, contributed their professional advice like how to plan our financial future and cover medical expenses, they have organized prayer groups for us, designed wristbands to help remind people to pray for us and offered us gifts so generous I have had to firmly say no because they are simply too much. The man is never poor or alone who has good friends. My wife and I simply could not gave survived this were it not for our dear family and friends.

The accident has taught me more about the incredible gift of marriage. My father, during his speech at my wedding reception, said the sacrament of marriage gives us the grace to do the impossible. I have met people during these months who think it is incredible, even impossible, that my wife and I survived a trauma like this having been married only three months. I tell them it helps to marry the right woman and get married the right way, the way the Church taught the two of us what marriage is and why it should be honored. People have told us that they are inspired and receive hope from the witness of our marriage – it inspires us too, I respond! We feel it is possible to face anything, even a future of me paralyzed, so long as we cling to each other, to God, and to our marriage vows.

The accident has taught me to be more humble and realistic about my own efforts and contributions. Before my accident I took pride in my self-reliance, and my ability to contribute to the causes I care about, and I still do, but since the accident I have gained a far greater appreciation for the fact that everything I do and am is because of the Lord. I certainly didn't bring myself back from the brink of death and, as a wise priest told me, my prayers and sacrifices these weeks and months have done more to aid the causes of life, marriage and religious freedom than anything I wrote, said or did to promote these prior to the accident.

But make no mistake, as soon as I am able, I am coming back to fight harder than ever for all of these things because I know now that it is prayer that makes the warrior his strongest.

The accident has taught me that I am a work still in progress and anything I do achieve is for God's glory. I completed my term of inpatient rehabilitation this week and the hard work of learning to live on my own again (with the tremendous help of my wife) has just begun, as has grueling outpatient therapy to regain more of the strength and muscle systems I have lost. The vast, vast majority of individuals with my injury never walk again, but there remain signs that I could beat these long odds, and I have been praying to St. Jude for such a miracle. The majority of individuals with an injury like mine never regain the use of their hands - I have had to write these reflections using a knuckle of my right pinky on a touchscreen, if you can believe it. But through the intercession of St. Francis, I am recovering some finger function in my left hand. There are troubling signs that my life will forever be plagued with neuropathic pain, but as I have learned, pain can be offered up and need not inhibit living a good and worthy life. In the coming months, I will be focusing on prayer, reflection and recovery, and then we will know more about what the future holds.

I don't quite remember how it began, but during one of the many sleepless nights spent in the Baltimore ICU, unsure of what that night and the next day would hold, I was inspired by the example of Samuel in the Old Testament, and began quietly saying to God, "Speak, Lord, your servant is listening." This remains my prayer. I do not know what the future holds. But I do know that as long as I have breadth, and with whatever limbs and muscles I can move, I will strive to serve the Lord and do His will. What else is a life for?

You can learn more about my ongoing recovery at tpetersrecovery.blogspot.com.

The Senate is Building a Trojan Horse

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

A bill coming up for a vote in the Senate next-week innocuously named the "Employee Non-Discrimination Act of 2013 (ENDA)" is nothing other than a Trojan horse built to attack the foundational institution of marriage between a man and a woman.

This disastrous piece of legislation is modeled on various local and state non-discrimination statutes that have already been used as tools in advancing the same-sex 'marriage' agenda around the nation. In the wake of Justice Kennedy's misguided opinion in the DOMA case (Windsor v. U.S.) it is certain that this federal ENDA bill will become a fulcrum used by same-sex 'marriage' activists to try to foist a marriage redefinition regime on the entire country.

Why is ENDA so dangerous? Because with the precedent set by this bill, courts in states around the country would soon find easy rationale for ruling that any organization or business that treats same-sex 'marriage' as different from man-woman marriage are discriminatory by definition. Under the law, individuals holding the common-sense belief that marriage is about giving kids a mom and a dad would be subject to punishment. Expressions of support for true marriage in the workplace would no longer be a fundamental right, but discriminatory, bigoted and an actionable offense!

I need you to contact the Senate right away and let them know where you stand on this egregiously flawed law. Urge them to reject ENDA and to preserve pro-marriage Americans' rights to speak, vote, donate, or act in defense of marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

In particular, there are eight senators who need to hear from you today. These senators are 'on the fence' and you can bet they'll be hearing from noisy same-sex 'marriage' lobbyists who want this legislation passed so that they can use it as a tool for forwarding their radical agenda.

Here is the contact information for these key legislators. Take some time today to call their offices and voice your opinion on ENDA using the recommended talking points below:

Senator John McCain (R.–AZ) —   202-224-2235
Senator Rob Portman (R.–OH) —   202-224-3353
Senator Orrin Hatch (R.–UT) —   202-224-5251
Senator Kelly Ayotte (R.–NH) —   202-224-3324
Senator Jeff Flake (R.–AZ) —   202-224-4521
Senator Dean Heller (R.–NV) —   202-224-6244
Senator Pat Toomey (R.–PA) —   202-224-4254
Senator John Barrasso (R.–WY) —   202-224-2946

 

Ask for a legislative staffer if you get through, or leave a voicemail to make sure these senators know where the majority of Americans stand on this dangerous bill. Here are some talking points to guide your discussion:

"I oppose ENDA because it is a threat to religious liberty, workplace civility, and traditional marriage."

"This bill will be used to bully and intimidate traditionally-minded citizens and organizations like we've already seen occurring in states that have passed they own ENDA-type laws."

"Believers in traditional marriage are already threatened with stigmatization by the reckless wording of Justice Kennedy's DOMA decision, and this bill will put them in even more danger of being labeled bigots or haters by those who disagree with them."

"Employees nationwide shouldn't feel that their workplaces are hostile environments just because of their belief in marriage."

"This bill will almost certainly be used as a tool for pushing a nationwide redefinition of marriage."

"I urge you to reject this bill and protect religious liberty and marriage."

After you've made your calls today, don't forget to use the NOM Action Center to send an email to your own senators and urge them to cast a vote for marriage and religious liberty next week.

And be sure to share this message with your family and friends, via email, or on Facebook and Twitter so that they can take action, too!

We need as many people as possible to become aware of the threat of this Trojan horse being built in the senate before it becomes a weapon in same-sex 'marriage' activists' arsenal.

Thank you for taking action today!

Faithfully,

Brian S. Brown

P.S.: If you'd like to learn more about ENDA or do more to stop this dangerous legislation, Family Research Council's legislative action arm, FRCAction, is leading the charge with a great online resource: www.FightENDA.org. Be sure to check it out!

The Ruth Institute

The National Organization for Marriage Education Fund is happy to announce that the Ruth Institute will be running as an independent organization effective November 1, 2013. The Ruth Institute has operated as a project of NOM's Education Fund over the last three years. NOM is proud of the great work that the Ruth Institute is doing and is happy that its work has grown to the point where it will operate independently.