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Help Us Protect People of Faith By Enacting the First Amendment Defense Act



Dear Marriage Supporter,

Now that the US Supreme Court has illegitimately redefined marriage, it's open season on Christians and other people of faith who continue to believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.

Supporters of marriage across the country have been charged by governmental entities with "discrimination" and subsequently fined, shamed and punished. In Washington, the state Attorney General is suing a 70-year old grandmother simply because she didn't want to personally participate in arranging flowers for a gay 'wedding' because doing so violates her religious beliefs. He has threatened her with financial ruin unless she agrees to apologize, change her ways and pay a fine. Across the border in Oregon, the state has fined two Christian bakers $135,000 because they did not want to bake a cake celebrating a gay 'wedding' even though same-sex 'marriage' was illegal in Oregon at the time.

These are not isolated incidents. Photographers, inn keepers, printers and others have similarly been hit with charges of "discrimination," then hauled before governmental entities and hit with large fines and punishments.

As bad as these things are at the state level, the biggest potential for abuse lies with the federal government which can exercise phenomenal power to attempt to force marriage supporters to abandon their viewpoints or risk punitive measures. Nonprofit groups like NOM or charities representing religious groups could be stripped of their tax exemption. Religious schools could be denied accreditation. Adoption agencies could have their licenses revoked. Charitable and social welfare groups could be put out of business unless they change their polices and positions. The potential ways that the Obama Administration could punish supporters of marriage are virtually limitless.

That is why it is critical that Congress enact the First Amendment Defense Act (S. 1598, HR 2802) which prohibits the federal government from taking any adverse action against any individual or organization for their support of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. For example, it would prohibit the government from going after a minister or church for refusing to officiate a same-sex 'wedding.'

Please help us enact this critical legislation by making a contribution of $15, $25, $35, $50, $75 or $100 or more.

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Public opinion polls show that the American public overwhelmingly agrees with us that nobody should be forced against their will to support same-sex 'marriage'. They agree that it is wrong for government to punish people simply for believing that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.

We have a limited amount of time to pass this important legislation before partisan politics results in gridlock in Washington. Fortunately, we have already made great progress in advancing the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA).

The Senate version of FADA, S. 1598 authored by Utah Senator Mike Lee, has 36 Senate cosponsors. The House version, HR 2802 authored by Idaho Representative Raul Labrador, currently has 142 cosponsors. That means that over 40% of the entire Congress is officially supporting this critical legislation — an impressive accomplishment!

Despite this high degree of Congressional support, enactment of FADA will take a fierce fight. NOM must raise $100,000 immediately to mount a full court blitz to pass this legislation.

We are counting on your help!

Fortunately, several of our best supporters have recognized the importance of protecting people of faith and they have joined together to match your donation to NOM dollar for dollar up to $250,000. They realize that we must capitalize on the momentum we have built and ensure once and for all that nobody will be targeted by the federal government ever again simply because they support traditional marriage. That means there has never been a better time to support NOM. Not only will we put your donation immediately to use in defense of religious liberty by pushing for enactment of the First Amendment Defense Act, but every dollar you give will be doubled!

I'll make a quick donation of $15 which will be matched dollar for dollar.

I'll make a quick donation of $25 which will be matched dollar for dollar.

I'll make a quick donation of $35 which will be matched dollar for dollar.

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I'll make a quick donation of $75 which will be matched dollar for dollar.

I'll make a quick donation of $100 or more which will be matched dollar for dollar.

Back when the US Supreme Court issued a similarly illegitimate decision when they forced abortion on the nation in their infamous Roe v Wade ruling, at least the government did not attempt to force every American to support abortion or risk punishment. In fact, Congress enacted the Hyde Amendment which for decades protected those who oppose abortion by preventing taxpayer money to be used to fund abortions.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of the illegitimate ruling redefining marriage. Today, powerful governmental officials are prepared to wield all the levers of government to force every American, charity and religious group to support same-sex 'marriage' or risk their livelihood.

The First Amendment Defense Act is the Hyde Amendment of the marriage issue. It will protect people of faith from being forced to be involved in supporting this illegitimate attempt by the Supreme Court to redefine marriage.

Please help us protect American families and the religious and charitable institutions they treasure by making a generous financial contribution to NOM today.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown


PS — Please don't forget that your contribution will be doubled as a result of a much-needed matching program offered by some of our best donors. Your gift of $25 will result in a $50 donation; your gift of $50 will mean that NOM receives $100, money that will immediately go to fighting for the religious liberty rights of individuals and groups who support marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

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Urge Your Congressmen to Support FADA

A recent letter from the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention to the Senate Majority Leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Speaker of the House, John Boehner, implores the Congress to pass the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA) immediately. With the imposition of same-sex ‘marriage’ by the US Supreme Court, religious freedom has come under fire. The letter succinctly characterizes the need for this act:

ThinkstockPhotos-89614910The First Amendment Defense Act will help to ensure the protection of the core American value of religious freedom. The bill bars the federal government from taking “any discriminatory action against a person, wholly or partially on the basis that such person believes or as in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union between one man and one woman, or that sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.” Such adverse action includes federal government discrimination in such areas as programs, grants, contracts, and tax treatment against individuals and organizations that believe on religious grounds that marriage is between a man and a woman. The bill also provides crucial protection for our nation’s faith-based institutions.

Governmental discrimination on the basis of religious belief and practice about marriage will have devastating effect on people of faith, their institutions, and the communities they serve. Millions of law-abiding, faithful people are likely to be suddenly deemed bigots and social outcasts. Their institutions will be crippled and many may cease to exist. Most distressing, millions of people will lose the safety net and affirming services they depend on each and every day, from daycare to meals to job training to adoption.

Failure to pass FADA will result in the alienation of millions of Americans, and will render the United States fundamentally unjust. Urge your congressmen to support FADA and to support religious freedom.

The Pendulum Is Moving

David French writes at National Review that three national polls show Americans rejecting the ruling of the US Supreme Court that purported to redefine marriage, and that support for same-sex ‘marriage’ is dropping. He attributes this in part to the behavior of same-sex ‘marriage’ supporters – “social justice warriors”– whom he says in the wake of the Supreme Court decision “proceeded to act like hectoring, condescending, arrogant scolds — loudly and publicly, day after day.” As published in National Review:

ThinkstockPhotos-186354183The Social Justice Warriors forgot that most Americans just don’t like mean people. And in one two-week span of American life, millions of SJWs helpfully and unmistakably labeled themselves with their rainbow profile pictures, then proceeded to act like hectoring, condescending, arrogant scolds — loudly and publicly, day after day. They were mean. They mocked Christians, celebrated the plight of a Christian baker’s family as it faced financial ruin for refusing to facilitate a gay wedding, and kept pointing at the Supreme Court and the White House as if they represented some sort of cosmic scoreboard — as if the only response for conservatives was to take their ball, slink away, and go home.

. . .

A generation ago, the social-justice Left tried its best to silence the pro-life movement — to treat the very utterance of pro-life sentiment as an affront against women. They failed, utterly. Pro-life speech is still of course constitutionally protected, and the pro-life movement is arguably stronger than it’s ever been. Indeed, it’s just received an incalculable boost through videos that show Planned Parenthood being Planned Parenthood. Unable to learn, the social-justice Left is going back to the old, failed playbook of the 1990s — trying its best to silence cultural conservatives on marriage – and in so doing they are once again showing their totalitarian colors. Once again, they’re being mean. Americans don’t like mean.

The mere act of engaging the Social Justice Warriors is a win. Your words have the chance to persuade, and their overreaction has a chance to repel. So speak merrily, conservative friends, and reap the benefits of liberal rage.

When honest people see the anti-marriage agenda exposed for its foulness, they will flock even faster to the side of truth. As the polls indicate, this is already happening. Clearly, the fight is not over; we must continue to stand and fight for the truth about marriage: the union of one man and one woman.

Please see National Review for the full article.

Groups Urge Alabama Supreme Court to Stand Strong for Marriage

The Constitution is the highest law in the land, not the Supreme Court. When the courts err by issuing an illegitimate decision that lacks constitutional basis, local and state governments are not required to broadly apply them. For this reason, two additional groups are calling for the Alabama Supreme Court to resist the United States Supreme Court’s illegitimate ruling declaring traditional marriage laws to be unconstitutional and purportedly ordering every state to issue ‘marriage’ licenses to same-sex couples.

The groups compare disregarding the ruling to the way that the Wisconsin Supreme court disregarded the mandates of the Fugitive Slave Act and the infamous Dred Scott decision of the Supreme Court. President Lincoln also refused to abide by that decision. These new filings are in addition to a filing by Liberty Counsel which similarly urged the state high court to ignore the Obergefell ruling. SFGATE reports on the situation:

ThinkstockPhotos-467245683The Alabama Policy Institute and the Alabama Citizens Action Program did not recommend what the court should do to resist the gay marriage decision.

At a minimum, the groups urged the Alabama justices to try to protect probate judges and their employees who don't want to issue the licenses on religious grounds.

"To require those individuals to participate in the solemnization and celebration of same-sex marriage is repugnant and antithetical to their religious convictions and conscience,” lawyers wrote.

Obergefell violates the First Amendment by forcing officials to act against their consciences. It is an illicit attack on the American way of life and it must be overturned.

Redefining Marriage Puts All Children at Risk

Our culture has become one focused on satisfying adult desires, no matter the cost. The recent Planned Parenthood scandal reinforces this fact, but its existence is not the cause. Of course, selling baby body parts is disgusting and an egregious offense against humanity, but it can only exist if people want it to exist. And we, as a culture, do.

ThinkstockPhotos-79072286American culture has left chastity by the wayside, thus endangering the lives of the unborn. This first surfaced in the divorce culture, then in the acceptance of abortion, and now in the legalization of same-sex marriage. Ryan T. Anderson explains this progression:

Adults must have what they want, including children. If those children cannot be conceived through a natural act of love, they must be manufactured. Far more children will be destroyed than will be born, of course, but we have decided that adult desires come first.

Giving people the right to get what they want, even a baby, sounds like an expansion of freedom. But it’s not. Activities that were once prohibited are now acceptable, protected, and even privileged. The Supreme Court ensured the legalization of contraception and abortion, for example. And now the government mandates that other people promote them. Obamacare requires employers to provide free contraception and abortifacients, and the State of California and the District of Columbia are attempting to require insurance coverage of elective surgical abortion.

ThinkstockPhotos-100614973Children should be conceived within a relationship that will provide them with the love and care of the man and woman who gave them life. The unborn child has a right to life, yes, but also deserves a mother and father, and where possible the mother and father who brought the child into being. Because of human frailty, it isn’t always possible for a child to be raised in his natural family, but that should be the ideal to which our policy aspires. And we should never intentionally deprive a child of such an upbringing. And yet redefining marriage does precisely that. That’s another reason why Justice Kennedy got the case so wrong.

The only way to ensure the safety of our children is to give them a family--a mother and a father, to love and care for them.

To read Ryan Anderson’s full article, please visit Town Hall.

NOM President Brian Brown Speaks at The FAMiLY Leadership Summit

Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, recently joined Republican presidential candidates and conservative luminaries in addressing the 2,500 activists who attended the FAMiLY LEADER’s Family Leadership Summit, which NOM was proud to co-sponsor. In his interview, Brown discussed the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision, and counseled conservatives on what to do next.

Brian-Brown (1)Speaking out against the current judicial tyranny ruling America, Brown outlined four key points of action for conservatives in the wake of the Supreme Court’s unjust decision:

1. We must affirm that marriage is the lifelong bond between one man and one woman for the purposes of procreation.

2. We must reject the Supreme Court’s decision vehemently in the public square. Pastors must speak out against gay marriage, average people must discuss traditional marriage at the workplace, and lawmakers must fight to repeal the Court’s decision.

3. We must overturn this decision. This point is a particularly daunting task. In the upcoming election we need to elect a president who will champion the cause for the family, and work to overturn this decision within the next election cycle.

4. Until we overturn Obergefell, we must contain the effects of the decision. There are a number of ways to contain the effects of the ruling, including FADA, a bill that guarantees first amendment rights.

Brown ended on an optimistic note, saying never to give up hope; all things are possible with God. He then said that we should be glad that we are to be persecuted—for we have an extraordinary opportunity to stand up for truth.

Watch Brian Brown’s full video interview below:

FLS15-Brown from The Family Leadership Summit on Vimeo.

After Obergefell, Support for Same-sex "Marriage" Drops

As a recent AP-GFK polls shows, 41% of Americans now disapprove of the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize gay marriage, while only 39% support the decision. As Brietbart reports, when it comes to same-sex marriage conflicting with religious liberty, the numbers are of an even greater difference:

The AP poll reveals that 42% of Americans favor legal gay marriage, while a similar poll carried out last April showed 48% in favor. Moreover, in conflicts between the interests of same-sex couples and those of religious liberty, a majority of Americans (56%) believe that government should rule in favor of religious freedom.

ThinkstockPhotos-521108245The issue of religious freedom seems to be the deciding factor in this turn in opinion. Americans do not like to see their fellow citizens mistreated and harassed by the government for committing no wrong save the crime of having moral convictions. In the past months, wedding related businesses and judges have suffered for holding to their belief in traditional marriage, causing outrage across the country. The AP’s report reflects this fact:

Specifically, more Americans believe that local officials with religious objections should be exempted from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, with 49% siding with the exemption and 47% saying they should be obliged to comply with the law. Moreover, an increasing number of U.S. citizens believe that wedding-related businesses with religious objections should be allowed to refuse service to gay and lesbian couples. Whereas in April 52% thought they should be accorded this option, the number was up to 59% in the recent poll.

“What the Supreme Court did is jeopardize our religious freedoms,” said Michael Boehm, 61, an industrial controls engineer from the Detroit area who describes himself as a conservative-leaning independent.

“You’re going to see a conflict between civil law and people who want to live their lives according to their faiths,” Boehm said.

The poll was conducted in the aftermath of the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges decision, in which the Supreme Court erasing state laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman, effectively making same-sex marriage the law of the land.

Americans will not let the forces of injustice trample upon them. We must never compromise our core beliefs. We must always stand up for truth. The Obergefell decision attacks among other things, the institution of the family, marriage, and religious freedom; the Obergefell decision will not stand.

See Breitbart for more.

Brian Brown: America Needs a Leader Who Will Protect the Family

In the coming election, America needs a candidate willing to stand up for truth. The DNC has failed America in this respect; the Supreme Court’s legalization of gay marriage under the Obama administration has incontrovertibly proved that.

When we turn to the GOP though, we are met with an alarming lack of leadership on social issues. Two top presidential candidates, Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, have both remained relatively silent on the marriage decision. Brian Brown, The National Organization for Marriage’s president, reflects:

ThinkstockPhotos-532747033The battle against abortion and same-sex marriage has turned into an all out war for the soul of the country, between those who believe in religious liberty and those who want to trample it.

With this Supreme Court decision, many in the movement, including pastors and priests, believe they will be forced to risk their personal freedom with persecution, possible jail time, or even martyrdom.

The 2016 presidential campaign will be long and difficult. This decision by two of the top-tier candidates to duck one of the most controversial and important issues of our time shows they are not ready to fight for the principles conservatives expect and demand of their candidates.

In the 2016 presidential election, the National Organization for Marriage will only support a leader, someone who will fight for marriage, in spite of a court’s decision.

See Fox News for Brian Brown’s full analysis.

Iowa is Key



Dear Marriage Supporter,

Hopefully by now you have read NOM's five-point plan to protect supporters of traditional marriage from being punished by the government while we work to reverse the illegitimate and outrageous decision of the US Supreme Court redefining marriage.

The first point of our Plan is arguably the most important one — to elect a pro-marriage champion as President of the United States — and we are hard at work to do so. Iowa is key to our strategy.

Please help us ensure that the next president is a pro-marriage champion by making a donation of $10, $20, $50, $100 or $250 or more.

Donate Today for a Pro-Marriage Champion President

Iowa is a small state where politicians are expected to actively seek votes through personal campaigning. In 2012, Sen. Rick Santorum won the state in part because he personally campaigned in every one of the 99 counties in Iowa. Because Iowa's citizens are able to approach the candidates directly to ask questions and look them in the eye, the state is the preeminent example of the importance of "retail politics." And since it is the first state in the nation to vote it holds enormous importance in the nominating process.

NOM has thousands of supporters in Iowa with whom we are in communication to ensure that they are actively pressing the candidates on their positions regarding marriage, and asking for specifics of what they would do as president.

That is also the purpose of the Presidential Marriage Pledge that we have asked each Republican candidate for president to sign. The pledge is not just a philosophical statement, but a promise to the American people about specific actions they will take as president to restore marriage in the law and to protect supporters of natural marriage from punishment and retaliation for holding true to marriage.

We're also mobilizing thousands of supporters to sign The People's Marriage Pledge so that the candidates know that the American people have their back when it comes to marriage.

But our plan includes much more, including making a very substantial investment in Iowa to educate voters about which candidates will be pro-marriage champions, and identify those who cannot be counted upon to fight to restore marriage. We are planning on running television, radio, newspaper and online ads across the state and also communicating with voters through direct mail and other means.

We need to raise several hundred thousand dollars to implement our plan in Iowa, and we need your support for this critical undertaking. Can we count on you?

Count on me for a critical donation of $10

Count on me for a critical donation of $20

Count on me for a critical donation of $50

Count on me for a critical donation of $100

Count on me for a critical donation of $250

Another important element in our plan is to rebuild a thriving marriage culture in America through grassroots education and engagement. In that regard, an important new book has been published today that we highly recommend to you. Authored by Ryan Anderson, a great friend of NOM's and a scholar at The Heritage Foundation, the book "Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom" is a tour-de-force examination of the issues in the marriage debate and an enlightening reflection on what is at stake. Please consider purchasing a copy today. And if you agree with us that the book is extraordinary, please write a favorable review. As you might imagine, the "haters" among our opponents are busy trolling the Internet to criticize the book because they realize that it is a powerful, principled witness to the truth of preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Thank you for all you are doing to advance the cause of marriage. We are grateful for your prayers, words of encouragement and of course for your financial support, which is vital to our work.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown


PS — NOM is co-sponsoring a major pro-family forum this coming Saturday in Ames, Iowa. The Family Leadership Summit on July 18th will feature remarks by many prominent conservative leaders including Dr. Ben Carson, Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Governor Mike Huckabee, Governor Bobby Jindal, Governor Rick Perry, Sen. Marco Rubio, Sen. Rick Santorum, Governor Scott Walker and businessman Donald Trump. I will be appearing as a speaker and look forward to interacting with the 2,500 activists who are expected to attend.


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The Nation Refuses to Accept Supreme Redefinition of Marriage



Marriage Supporter,

Not Accepted

Ruther Bader Ginsburg was wrong. Justice Ginsburg violated judicial ethics when she gave a media interview presaging her vote to redefine marriage (even before the case was briefed or argued) in which she outrageously predicted that the Supreme Court decision imposing same-sex 'marriage' would be readily accepted by the country. The evidence that the country is not embracing this ruling mounts every day.

A nationwide survey of voters conducted by Reuters found that only 51% of Americans support same-sex 'marriage' following the Supreme Court ruling — a considerably smaller percentage than many national polls found prior to the ruling — and nearly two thirds of Republicans oppose the Supreme Court decision. Reuters noted that this will likely ensure that opposition to the Supreme Court ruling will be a pivotal issue in the selection of the Republican presidential nominee.

GOP Presidential Hopefuls Solidly Reject SCOTUS Ruling

Almost without exception, the Republican candidates running for president have roundly criticized the Supreme Court for its ruling imposing same-sex 'marriage.' Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, Scott Walker and Rick Santorum have been particularly critical, and have called for a constitutional amendment to preserve traditional marriage. Even moderates like Governor Chris Christie have taken the Court to task for their illegitimate ruling imposing same-sex 'marriage' on the nation.

Santorum Keynotes NOM Gala; Signs Presidential Marriage Pledge

Sen. Rick Santorum gave the keynote address to NOM's Second Annual Marriage Gala in Washington, DC on July 2nd. Sen. Santorum ripped the US Supreme Court for their illegitimate ruling and pledged as president to work to reverse it, saying "this will not stand," bringing the crowd of nearly 400 people to their feet.

NOM's Marriage Gala is an opportunity to bring together many of our strongest supporters from throughout the country to hear from NOM's team of leaders, including our Chairman, John Eastman, and Co-Founder, Professor Robert George. In addition to hearing from Senator Santorum, who received NOM's prestigious Marriage Champion Award in recognition of his steadfast support for traditional marriage and his work helping NOM in its earliest days, NOM also honored Sherif Girgis with the Public Square Leadership Award. Mr. Girgis, a Rhodes Scholar, is the co-author (with Robby George and Ryan Anderson) of the book "What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense."

It was announced at the Gala that Sen. Santorum has become the first 2016 presidential candidate to sign NOM's Presidential Marriage Pledge, promising to take specific actions as president to restore traditional marriage and protect supporters of marriage against attempts to marginalize and punish them.

Sign the People's Marriage Pledge Today!

NOM expects a number of other candidates to join Sen. Santorum as signatories of the Presidential Marriage Pledge in coming days.

NOM Unveils Five Point Plan

The Marriage Gala also served as the venue for NOM to unveil our five-part plan to mitigate the damage of the Supreme Court ruling and to work to reverse it. Our plan includes:

  1. Elect a pro-marriage President of the United States in 2016.
  2. Hold the Republican Party and its representatives accountable to the American people when it comes to marriage.
  3. Ensure Congress and state Legislatures move swiftly to pass the First Amendment Defense Act to prevent any government agency from discriminating against people or institutions that believe that marriage is a union between one man and one woman.
  4. Build and strengthen a grassroots pro-marriage movement.
  5. Support actions to amend the Constitution to repeal this illegitimate decision by a bare majority of justices.

Alabama Supreme Court Asked To Reject SCOTUS Ruling

Prior to the Supreme Court ruling imposing same-sex 'marriage,' the Alabama Supreme Court was a forceful defender of its state's citizens, refusing to permit local clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite orders of a federal judge to do so. Lead by Chief Justice Roy Moore, the state's highest court ruled that a lower federal court judge lacked the authority to impose an order on the state since the US Supreme Court had previously ruled that there was no federal constitutional right to gay 'marriage.' Now that the SCOTUS ruling has been issued reversing their prior ruling and imposing gay 'marriage' on the nation, the Alabama Supreme Court has invited parties involved in the state marriage litigation to submit briefs advising the state how to respond.

In response to the request, Liberty Counsel has filed a brief with the state Supreme Court suggesting that they ignore the US Supreme Court ruling because it is unlawful and lacks constitutional legitimacy. Liberty Counsel's brief points out that the Wisconsin Supreme Court refused to follow the U.S. Supreme Court opinion in the Dred Scott case, which said that blacks were not entitled to full protection as citizens. The organization asked the Alabama Supreme Court to similarly resist compliance with the Supreme Court ruling on marriage, saying "A judicial opinion without constitutional basis is not law and should not be followed by any state or citizen."

Judges, Clerks and Citizens Resist SCOTUS Ruling

State judges and clerks across the country are refusing to participate in giving legitimacy to the US Supreme Court's lawless ruling. A state judge in Ohio, C. Allen McConnell, recently refused to participate in a same-sex 'marriage' because doing so violates his personal and religious beliefs.

Meanwhile, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has said that Texas must "act on multiple levels to further protect religious liberties for all Texans" and must "immediately do anything we can to help our County Clerks and public officials who now are forced with defending their religious beliefs against the Court's ruling."

Numerous County Clerks in Kentucky and other states have refused to issue licenses to same-sex couples, saying that doing so violates their religious beliefs.

Support Grows For First Amendment Defense Act

The proposed First Amendment Defense Act is generating significant support. Yesterday the House Freedom Caucus called on the House leadership to schedule a vote on the legislation before Congress leaves on its August recess. Currently, 98 members of the House of Representatives have co-sponsored HR 2802, authored by Rep. Raul Labrador, with more representatives signing up daily. In the Senate, 25 Senators have co-sponsored S. 1598, authored by Sen. Mike Lee, including nearly all the Senators who are presidential hopefuls (Cruz, Rubio, and Graham). Rand Paul has not yet co-sponsored the legislation.

Please contact your federal representatives and ask them to co-sponsor and support the First Amendment Defense Act, which will protect supporters of marriage from being punished by the government if they do not embrace the Supreme Court's illegitimate ruling.

Help NOM Today

Many people have written me asking how they can help fight the illegitimate ruling of the Supreme Court. While there are a number of actions that we urge people to take, including supporting the First Amendment Defense Act and signing The People's Marriage Pledge, perhaps the most important thing you can do is make a donation to NOM at this critical time. We are hard at work implementing our five-point plan, but we need to raise several hundred thousand dollars in the next few weeks to keep up our momentum. Please make a gift of $25, $50, $100, or $500 or more to show your support and help us undertake all the efforts that are needed. Working together, we will be successful!

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown


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Alabama Supreme Court Urged to Protect Religious Liberty

In a potentially significant development, Liberty Counsel has led a brief with the Alabama Supreme Court urging it to ignore the SCOTUS ruling on marriage, citing as precedent a state Supreme Court ruling in Wisconsin where that Court refused to follow the Supreme Court’s ruling in the infamous Dred Scott case.

The Alabama Supreme Court has been a staunch advocate for the decision of their elected officials and voters who overwhelmingly desire to preserve marriage as the union of one man and one woman. They refused to allow state clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite a federal judge’s order to do so. In the wake of the US Supreme Court’s illegitimate ruling imposing gay ‘marriage’ on the nation, the Alabama court asked for parties to their marriage litigation to file appropriate briefs advising the court what they should do in the wake of the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v Hodges.

Liberty Counsel’s brief filed in response to the request has decried the Obergefell ruling as an unlawful and illegal federal usurpation of power that is reserved to the states. In an accompanying press release the group said, “A judicial opinion without constitutional basis is not law and should not be followed by any state or citizen.”

Below is language from their Press Release:

ThinkstockPhotos-78632601Montgomery, AL—In a brief to the Alabama Supreme Court, Liberty Counsel presented legal arguments following the opinion in the marriage case at the U.S. Supreme Court. “When considering the Supreme Court’s Obergefell opinion, state Supreme Courts should contemplate the “decision’s substantial assault on the Rule of Law, Democracy, and Natural Law, and its necessary diminishment of the constitutional right to Free Exercise of Religion,” Liberty Counsel told the Alabama Supreme Court.

Chief Justice John Roberts said it best: “[For] those who believe in a government of laws, not of men, the majority’s approach is deeply disheartening….Five lawyers have closed the debate and enacted their own vision of marriage as a matter of constitutional law.”

The Obergefell opinion is an assault on Democracy. Justice Antonin Scalia warned, “This practice of constitutional revision by an unelected committee of nine…robs the People of the most important liberty they asserted in the Declaration of Independence and won in the Revolution of 1776: the freedom to govern themselves.”

ThinkstockPhotos-106536180The decision from five lawyers ignored the natural order of marriage: the union of a man and a woman who complement each other biologically and socially, which union produces children, creates a family, and builds society.

“Aside from undermining the political processes that protect our liberty, the majority’s decision threatens the religious liberty our Nation has long sought to protect,” Justice Clarence Thomas put forth in his dissent.

The brief by Liberty Counsel points out that the Wisconsin Supreme Court refused to follow the U.S. Supreme Court opinion in the Dred Scott case, which said that blacks were not entitled to full protection as citizens. The Liberty Counsel brief also urged the Alabama Supreme Court to protect the religious freedom of its citizens.

“There is existing precedent for a state’s highest court to reject an unlawful mandate from the U.S. Supreme Court,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. Staver continued, “The hope of our Constitutional Republic rests upon state officials and American citizens who will refuse to allow five, black-robed judges to rob us of our free, representative form of government. A judicial opinion without constitutional basis is not law and should not be followed by any state or citizen.”

Liberty Counsel also asked Alabama’s High Court to ensure protection of the constitutional rights of Alabama probate judges and other Christian business owners. “Never before in America has a religious requirement been required to hold office or own a business, and it cannot begin now,” Staver cautioned. “To require Christians to pull out pages of their Bible in order to hold office or own a business is anti-American and it is unconstitutional, despite what any judge may say otherwise.”

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.

The Truth About Marriage Can't Be Changed

This past Monday, C. Allen McConnell, a Toledo judge, refused to perform a local couple’s same-sex wedding ceremony. After complaints and outcry from the both the couple and the pro-same-sex marriage community, Judge McConnell issued this statement:

ThinkstockPhotos-78026711The declination was based upon my personal and Christian beliefs established over many years. I apologize to the couple for the delay they experienced and wish them the best. The court has implemented a process whereby same-sex marriages will be accommodated. I will continue to perform traditional marriages during my duties assignment. I am also seeking advisory opinion from the Supreme Court of Ohio at this time as to whether or not I can opt out of the rotation. Upon receipt of the advisory opinion from Supreme Court, I will abide by its decision.

Though Judge McConnell respects the Supreme Court and the United States government at large, he refuses to make decisions that he feels would transgress his moral code. By adhering to his values, he has sparked controversy among his colleagues and acquaintances, who feel that his actions call into question his credibility as a judge. The Ohio ACLU called Judge McConnell’s convictions not only intolerant, but also unlawful in the following statement:

Public servants like Judge McConnell have an obligation to families who wish to marry in their courtrooms, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. The highest Court in the land decreed that people have a right to marry who they love, and judges have taken an oath to uphold those laws.

As if that were not enough, the ACLU went on to state that no judge has the right to place their own conscience above the law:

While we respect that judges have deeply held personal and religious beliefs, they should not interfere with the oath they took to uphold our Constitution. No judge has a right to deny a consenting adult couple the right to commit to their loving relationship through marriage.

Once again, the very proponents of “equal rights” are now denying them to anyone who refuses to comply. The hypocritical message of tolerance and equality emblazons headlines while honest people are repeatedly forced to lay aside their deeply held beliefs. This insanity must not continue. Judge McConnell deserves praise for refusing to perform an act against his own will.

See Toledonewsnow for more.

SCOTUS Marriage Ruling Has Left In Full Retreat on Religious Liberty

Robert Knight, a senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union, offers his informed opinion on what lies ahead for those who disagree with SCOTUS’s ruling regarding same-sex marriage: an end to their religious freedom.

ThinkstockPhotos-479616714Even before the U.S. Supreme Court announced the previously unknown constitutional “right” to impose same-sex “marriage” on all 50 states, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) was readying its next volley.

For two decades, the ACLU has cited the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) as a defense of religious liberty in various worthy and some not-so-worthy cases. No more.

The ACLU has decided that the unalienable right to religious freedom embodied in the First Amendment must give way to newly coined claims by newly empowered groups.

In a Washington Post column, ACLU Deputy Director Louise Melling called on Congress to make RFRA essentially toothless. Of course, that’s not the way she put. Here’s her signature sentence: “It’s time for Congress to amend the RFRA so that it cannot be used as a defense for discrimination. Religious freedom will be undermined only if we continue to tolerate and enable abuses in its name.”

. . .

Not missing a beat, atheist activist Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation has uncorked yet another call for the Pentagon to weed out conservative Christians. In a Daily Kos posting, he wrote that chaplains who teach biblical marriage “don’t belong in the military. At this stage, the only honorable thing that these losers can do is to fold up their uniforms, turn in their papers, and get the hell out of the American military chaplaincy. If they are unwilling or too cowardly to do so, then the Department of Defense must expeditiously cleanse itself of the intolerant filth that insists on lingering in the ranks of our armed forces.”

Given that this is what passes for tolerance, it’s not surprising that the ACLU and others on the left want to render meaningless the free exercise of religion guarantee of the First Amendment and any federal and state laws that fortify religious freedom.

Deploying the language of inevitability, such as “being on the wrong side of history,” they seek to persuade the vast majority of Americans that resistance is futile.

Are they right? The answer will depend on a vigorous, renewed fight for liberty in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

For the full article, please visit The Washington Times.

Bobby Jindal Knows Exactly What Marriage Is

While the Supreme Court’s recent decision regarding marriage exemplifies that the majority of the justices do not understand the cultural significance, biological requirements, or historical reasoning of marriage, Bobby Jindal assures everyone that he is not “evolving” on marriage:

Bobby-JindalGOP presidential candidate Bobby Jindal says he will not change his stance on marriage.

The Louisiana governor made that clear when he sat down for an interview with The Daily Signal earlier this year in Baton Rouge.

“My faith teaches me that marriage is between a man and a woman. I’m not changing,” Jindal says. “I know it’s politically fashionable to evolve. I’m not evolving and it doesn’t matter to me what the polls say…that is one of those issues that I’m not going to change on.”

Jindal has called the Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing gay marriage an “all-out assault against the religious freedom rights of Christians.”

While Jindal says his state will comply with the Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage, he has also stated that court clerks and state workers can’t be forced to support the ruling if they have religious objections.

Jindal says he will continue to push for a constitutional amendment that defines marriage between a man and a woman.

Original article and video can be found via The Daily Signal.

The Next Target in the Same-sex Marriage War

Now that the Supreme Court has failed the American people and are forcing states to accept same-sex marriage, what is the next target of same-sex marriage proponents? Dominic Lynch has the answer: after Obergefell, churches are next.

ThinkstockPhotos-122468669Chief Justice Roberts's Obergefell dissent lays the stakes on the table:

Today's decision, for example, creates serious questions about religious liberty. Many good and decent people oppose same-sex marriage as a tenet of faith, and their freedom to exercise religion is -- unlike the right imagined by the majority -- actually spelled out in the Constitution. Respect for sincere religious conviction has led voters and legislators in every State that has adopted same-sex marriage democratically to include accommodations for religious practice. The majority's decision imposing same-sex marriage cannot, of course, create any such accommodations. The majority graciously suggests that religious believers may continue to "advocate" and "teach" their views of marriage. The First Amendment guarantees, however, the freedom to "exercise" religion. Ominously, that is not a word the majority uses.

How do we get from "marriage equality" to churches forced into performing weddings that violate their teachings? Lawsuits.

Imagine a same sex couple who consider themselves deeply Catholic want to get married at the Catholic church of their choice. They approach the pastor and he declines to officiate the wedding or be a party to it. The spurned couple might then file a non-discrimination lawsuit against the pastor and his parish making the simple argument that because same-sex marriage is a right protected under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, a parish cannot discriminate in who it weds and who it doesn't.

The religious liberty protections of the First Amendment can only hold up so long when put under the scrutiny that drove Burwell. Play some mental gymnastics a la Roberts and suddenly a centuries-old protection of religious liberty fades away. "Prohibiting" could be construed to mean "Congress can't prohibit except when..." And "free exercise" could take a similar meaning: "Churches can practice their faith freely except when..." It's not a far stretch to suggest this can happen. If Burwell happened, this can happen.

Advocates of same sex marriage have avoided discussing religious liberty protections outside of some editorials that scoff at the idea that the free exercise of religion would ever be threatened by the gay marriage movement. Ultimately, our society is one step away from the previously unthinkable stage of government-coerced marriages in churches.

Unless Congress, governors, and state legislatures act immediately, government-coerced weddings are a matter of when, not if.