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Category Archives: Maryland

Boys in the Girls' Room in Frederick County, MD?

 

The Board of Education of Frederick County, Maryland is considering a policy that endangers the privacy and safety of the county’s students by allowing "access to facilities, including rest rooms, locker rooms, or changing facilities, that correspond to their gender identity […] without question" [emphasis added].

Below are some important action items for you to consider, but first I'm including more information about this dangerous policy. You can read the policy in full here (PDF).

If you're already familiar with it, feel free to skip below to see how you can help today, or simply go online and sign our petition about this policy now:

Please take immediate action to defend students' privacy and safety in Frederick County today!


This ominous policy is far-reaching in its implications. If adopted, it would mandate that:

  • “All students [would] have access to facilities, including rest rooms, locker rooms, or changing facilities, that correspond to their gender identity. Access [would be] provided without question or additional complicating procedure. Students, including non-binary students, [would] determine which facilities are consistent with their gender identity."
  • “Under no circumstance [would] any student [be] required or directed to use a private use facility.”
    “Students [would be permitted to participate in sports and phys. ed. Classes] in a manner consistent with their gender identity” and “[t]he gender identity of student-athletes [would not be required] to be disclosed to coaches, teammates, opponent’s coaches, or anyone else….”
  • On “overnight field trips,” any student would have “the opportunity to room with others according to their gender identity,” and while efforts would be made to “accommodate any student who desires greater privacy… no student should be isolated.”
  • Students and all staff who work with students would be required to refer to students by their chosen name and pronouns, and be provided “a current and complete list of preferred names and pronouns for all students” to be used “in every interaction.” There would also be no dress code for events based on gender.
  • Finally, and most dangerously of all, the policy states: “Depending on privacy needs or a transgender student’s own personal transition, school staff are authorized to work with students (and their families, if students explicitly wish) to provide options that may support a student’s needs” [emphasis added] - which implies that schools might work independently of parents in implementing policies having to do directly with children’s health, safety, privacy, and general welfare!

This policy is not only absurd, it is dangerous. With this policy, the Board of Education adopts the view of LGBT activists that “gender nonconforming” or “non-binary” students are the only ones with “rights,” and ignores the basic rights of privacy and safety of all other students. It puts the agenda of gender redefinition, a political tool being used by radical activists throughout society, ahead of the privacy and safety of students in intimate spaces like locker rooms and bathrooms. To satisfy the whims of activists and powerful lobbyists from Hollywood and Washington, DC, the Frederick County Board of Education would - without regard to parents’ wishes - force students to use the restroom, to shower, and even to cohabitate overnight with members of the opposite sex! All this in the name of “creating [a] welcoming and affirming]” environment for students who suffer from gender confusion!

So now it is time for us to take action!


Here is how you can help:

We have launched an online petition to the Board of Education urging them to reject this dangerous policy. Please visit and sign this petition right away!

Sign Our Petition Today!

Secondly, if you are able, consider attending the next Board meeting, where this policy is scheduled to be discussed. The meeting will be on Wednesday, June 14th at 6:00 PM in the FCPS Board Room, 191 South East Street in Frederick.

Finally, please share this email with your friends and family in Maryland, especially in Frederick County, and alert as many people to this urgent matter as you can!

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

NOM, CitizenGO and IOF Wrap Up Successful, Enlightening #FreeSpeechBus Tour

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 4, 2017 at 12:00 PM (EDT)
Contact: Joseph Grabowski (202) 276-4404 | [email protected]


NOM, CitizenGO and IOF Wrap Up Successful, Enlightening #FreeSpeechBus Tour

Bus Tour Exposes Intolerance, Hate of LGBT Activists; Reveals Deep Coordination with Democrat Politicians, Anarchists

Washington, D.C.–The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), CitizenGO and the International Organization for the Family (IOF) today wrapped their #FreeSpeechBus tour intended to spark a national discussion about the biological truth of gender with a visit to the nation's capital in Washington, DC. The organizers said the tour revealed the ugly side of the LGBT movement, which engaged in violence and assault, and inflicted substantial property damage, in a failed effort to derail the bus tour. They also said that the response to the tour indicated deep coordination between the LGBT movement, Democratic politicians and anarchists who are committed to the destruction of civil society. Organizers said the tour was a success in that it highlighted the vicious intolerance shown to anyone in society who expresses dissent regarding the transgender agenda.

"We launched the #FreeSpeechBus tour as a way to spark a conversation about gender, that it is determined by biology rather than by emotions and feelings, and to call for all sides to respect the free speech rights of citizens to debate these issues without fear of being demeaned, harassed, or threatened with retaliation," said Brian S. Brown, president of NOM and IOF. "What we encountered was a sustained, violent, coordinated attack designed to shut us down and force us to just go away. They failed to stop the tour or silence us, and, ironically, in the process made our very point that they don't want to debate the issues and instead will use force and political power to silence Christians and all Americans who understand that biology determines gender."

On the first day of the bus tour, the #FreeSpeechBus was attacked by two LGBT activists while parked near the United Nations in New York City. They assaulted the African American bus driver and destroyed several of the bus's windows with a hammer, while also using graffiti to cover the bus with militant "trans liberation" messages. After repairs, the bus continued the tour to Boston, New Haven, Philadelphia and concluded in Washington, DC. Along the way, it was frequently met by an angry mob of LGBT extremists and anarchists. It was revealed that prominent Democratic politicians were involved in promoting the violence and hate, including coordinating with anarchist groups.

"In Philadelphia, Mayor Jim Kenney's office was deeply involved in organizing the violent demonstrations against us, including coordinating with anarchist groups that are closely watched by the FBI," said Ignacio Arsuaga, president of CitizenGo. "The mayor's Office of LGBT Affairs proudly referred to themselves as 'an accomplice' in organizing protests which turned violent, with attacks on the bus and on police officers by gay activists and anarchists. At least one of them was arrested and bus organizers were prevented from speaking, an act of intolerant bullying the Mayor's office takes pride in. Meanwhile, while we were being prevented from engaging in a discussion with the protestors, the mayors of both Philadelphia and Boston ordered LGBT/transgendered flags to be flown at City Hall."

Brown noted that the intolerance and violence shown to those who hold traditional, majoritarian beliefs about the biological nature of gender is a powerful argument why Congress should move forward immediately to pass the First Amendment Defense Act, legislation which would prevent the federal government from discriminating against people of faith based on their views of gender and similar matters. "No American should be subjected to discrimination or harassment by the government simply for standing by their deeply held beliefs about the nature of gender, marriage and similar subjects. Citizens on both sides of these debates should be able to express their viewpoints without the heavy hand of government harassing and discriminating against them."

# # #

To schedule an interview with a representative of any of  NOM, IOF, or CitizenGO, please contact:
Joseph Grabowski, [email protected], (202) 276-4404.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

Differing Opinions Are Not Welcome at John Hopkins University

Andrew Guernsey, a political science and classics major at John Hopkins University, reports via National Review that John Hopkins has launched another attack on individuals who hold conservative beliefs. This week, JHU’s student government voted to ban any hypothetical future Chick-fil-A outlet from their campus.

The student government allegedly disagrees with the personal opinions of the fast food chain’s owner on the topic of marriage. Guernsey, president of the student group Johns Hopkins University Voice for Life, explains why the student government’s decision is so dangerous:

ThinkstockPhotos-187643976The student government’s vote went beyond merely expressing support for same-sex marriage. The Chick-fil-A ban seeks to introduce unprecedented discrimination against companies owned by religious conservatives into the university’s contracting policies, even though only a few years ago, prominent liberals like Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama had held the same views on marriage. In banning Chick-fil-A from campus for “homophobia,” the JHU student government is only a short step from similarly giving the boot to socially conservative Christian, Catholic, Muslim, Orthodox, and Jewish student groups from campus, as we have seen happen at Vanderbilt University, the 23 campuses of California State University, and others throughout the country.

In a free-market economy, the company that makes the best food at the lowest price usually wins more business. At a university, the robust free market of thought similarly should allow the best ideas to win out in an unfettered debate. The Chick-fil-A ban hurts both types of free market on campus. If the argument for redefining marriage into a genderless contract for any two consenting adults is so strong, then advocates for it should not need the student government’s version of the thought police to silence dissenting voices.

Guernsey is absolutely correct: silencing dissenting voices is an affront to the American university system. JHU’s message is crystal clear: any students who disagree with their opinion are not welcome on Johns Hopkins' campus. It is no shock, but it is a shame. There are many brilliant students at JHU who should be given the opportunity to hear both sides of an argument and make the decision for themselves. While Johns Hopkins may have seemingly “silenced” potential dissenting voices, it won’t last.

Truth can never be fully silenced nor destroyed. The student government at Hopkins can spin their decisions any way they want, but sharp students like Guernsey can see exactly what their real intention is: discrimination, all in the name of “tolerance.”

Bishop Rozanski: "Family" is "the Basis of Society"

Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski, former auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, will be installed tomorrow as the ninth bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield.  A Western Massachusetts news site posted a curiously-written article about the new bishop, a vocal marriage supporter.

Mitchell T. RozanskiThe article wasted no time in criticizing the sex abuse scandals of the 1990s and then went on to imply that Pope Francis somehow holds a different view on marriage than the official position of the Catholic Church:

Last September, Francis, in an interview, said abortion, contraception and gay marriage had become an "obsessed" focus in the Church. Last July, he also said, “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge."

However, Church teaching that married love is between a man and a woman, for the purpose of reproduction, as ordered by nature, that itself was ordered by God, is not likely to be modified, no matter the pastoral approach to it.

Notice how the article implies that Pope Francis's comments signify a break in Church teaching.

In reality, Pope Francis's "who am I to judge" comment was a continuation of what the Catholic Church has always taught--that those who are attracted to the same sex are called to chastity and should not be subjected to unjust discrimination.  Also notice how the article omitted the portion of the pope's quote denouncing the formation of a "gay lobby."  To include that would be an admission that Pope Francis isn't the radical doctrine reformer many want him to be (so would including anything about Pope Francis's opposition to redefining marriage when he was Cardinal Bergoglio).

The article did, however, include very wonderful comments from Bishop Rozanski on the importance of family - although it was evident that the author of the piece did not take kindly to these observations:

What we offer as Catholics is to strengthen the family as the basis of society. When there is a solid family life, there is less likelihood of crime, there is less likelihood of drug use. The children grow up with a solid foundation. And that is a foundation they can take all through their lives.  And, as a Church, what we are saying is that God made us male and female, and that the institution of marriage is so crucial. It is a sacrament of the Church, if the sacrament is well lived, then the children and future generations will benefit.

Bishop Rozanski is absolutely correct.  When children grow up with a married mother and father, they are much less likely to experience poverty, juvenile delinquency, or drop out of school.

The bishop's defense of marriage is rooted in love for all members of the human family and concern for the welfare of children and society as a whole.  His charitable, truthful comments about the family as the basis of society should inspire Catholics and non-Catholics alike, even if they do upset liberals in the media and those who wish to turn Church against itself by unfairly twisting the words of the Pope and other leaders.

MinnPost: NOM Vows to Spent $500K to Defeat GOP Legislators Who Vote for Gay Marriage

MinnPost.com:

Minnesota legislators who may face a vote on legalizing gay marriage have a new consideration on the issue.

In addition to listening to their consciences and constituents, they now have word from the National Organization for Marriage that the national group will spend $500,000 to defeat any Republican legislator who votes for gay marriage.

And the group will support any DFL legislators who vote against it.

"Marriage is not a partisan issue, and NOM does not hesitate to oppose weak Republicans and support strong Democrats," said Brian Brown, NOM president.

The group is initially targeting GOP state Sen. Branden Petersen, who last week said he's planning to co-sponsor a gay marriage bill.

AP: Analysis Shows GOP Legislators Who Support SSM Lose Their Seats

An important news story by Patrick Condon in the Associated Press confirms what we have been highlighting for a long time -- Republicans who betray their base on marriage place their political future in serious jeopardy:

As some Republicans in the Minnesota Legislature weigh whether to support legalizing same-sex marriage, an analysis of gay-marriage votes from other states shows that GOP lawmakers who backed it often faced consequences, including loss of their seats.

... Republicans inclined to back gay marriage face risks.

"It was largely responsible for my loss," said Jean White, a former Republican state senator in Colorado whose 2011 vote for civil unions became an issue in a primary challenge by a fellow Republican...

According to roll call votes, in the eight times nationwide that state legislatures voted for gay marriage, just 47 Republicans bucked the party line out of many hundreds who voted against it.

Of those 47 Republicans who voted yes starting in 2009, 21 are in office today.

In New York, one of four Republican senators who supported gay marriage is still in the Legislature. One lost a primary, one retired, and one lost the general election after narrowly winning a bitter primary.

A New Hampshire Republican representative lost a primary after her 2009 vote for gay marriage, and in Maryland the former Senate Republican leader relinquished his leadership post when he started working with Democrats on a gay-marriage bill that passed last year.

"I got a lot of flak, a lot," said that senator, Allan Kittleman. He's planning to leave the Senate this year to run for a county office instead.

In Washington, which passed gay marriage in 2012, two of six Republicans who backed the bill are no longer in office.

"Iconic" Annapolis, Maryland Trolley Forced to Shut Down Because of SSM

The Baltimore Sun:

An Annapolis company whose old-fashioned trolleys are iconic in the city's wedding scene has abandoned the nuptial industry rather than serve same-sex couples.

The owner of Discover Annapolis Tours said he decided to walk away from $50,000 in annual revenue instead of compromising his Christian convictions when same-sex marriages become legal in Maryland in less than a week. And he has urged prospective clients to lobby state lawmakers for a religious exemption for wedding vendors.

... Wedding vendors elsewhere who refused to accommodate same-sex couples have faced discrimination lawsuits — and lost. Legal experts said Discover Annapolis Tours sidesteps legal trouble by avoiding all weddings.

... The trolley company's decision, publicized by a straight groom offended by what he called "repressive bigotry," offers a snapshot of a local business navigating a new landscape in Maryland's wedding industry, and leaving it behind for a competitor to swoop in.

The head of the Maryland Wedding Professionals Association said the trolley company is the second vendor to refuse business over the state's same-sex marriage law, which voters upheld in November. The Maryland clergyman who led opposition to same-sex marriage called the trolley company's choice to abandon profits on principle "gutsy" and predicted that more businesses would quietly follow suit.

... Frank Schubert, the political strategist who ran campaigns against same-sex marriage in Maryland and three other states this year, said opponents predicted collateral damage from legalizing same-sex unions.

"This is exactly what happens," Schubert said, adding that religious liberty is "right in the cross hairs of this debate. … The law doesn't protect people of faith. It simply doesn't."

Schubert pointed to a handful of other examples publicized in news reports across the country of wedding vendors sued for refusing to accommodate a same-sex ceremony: a pair of Vermont innkeepers, a New Jersey church group and a New Mexico wedding photographer.

It Begins: Christian Wedding Vendor in Maryland Forced to Shut Down Over SSM

The ballot shown to Maryland voters used 25 words to described the redefinition of marriage but over 70 words claiming false religious exemptions for people and institutions who disagree with redefined marriage.

Sure enough, as we warned, citizens in Maryland who disagree with redefined marriage are now being forced out of the public square and are NOT protected under the redefining marriage law passed in Maryland:

An Annapolis wedding vendor plans to ask Maryland's General Assembly to give his company and others like him the right to refuse services to gay couples on religious grounds.

In November, Marylanders voted to uphold a law, passed by the General Assembly during the 2012 legislative session, that legalized same-sex marriages starting Jan. 1.

"The law exempts my minister from doing same-sex weddings, and the Knights of Columbus don’t have to rent out their hall for a gay wedding reception, but somehow my religious convictions don’t count for anything," Discover Annapolis Tours owner Matt Grubbs wrote in an email.

The email was provided to Patch by Chris Belkot on Nov. 29. He received it from Grubbs after Belkot inquired about using the company's wedding services this spring.

Grubbs confirmed the email, and said his attorney advised him to shut down the wedding part of his business immediately because he could be sued for refusing services to same-sex couples.

"We’re a Christian-owned company, and we just can't support gay marriages," Grubbs said. "We're not trying to make a statement. We're not trying to make a point. We're just trying to be faithful Christians."

The decision will cost him approximately $50,000 a year in revenue. -- Annapolis Patch

Mainwaring: SSM Victories "Tactical Wins, Not a Sea Change"

Doug Mainwaring, a gay tea party activist and writer, notes the "thin margins for same-sex marriage" in deep blue states and concludes:

"...In my home state, Maryland, a minimum of 23% [100% - (37%/48%) = 23%] of the opposition to same-sex marriage came from Obama/Biden supporters. Earlier in the year, the Maryland House of Delegates only narrowly passed same-sex marriage legislation with just one vote to spare, and that only came with lots of arm-twisting.

These are not overwhelming victories representing a sea change in public attitude toward same-sex marriage. These are tactical wins." -- AmericanThinker

Post-Marriage Election Round-Up: Statements from (Arch)bishops and Catholic Conferences -- Disappointment, Gratitude, Resolve

From the Marriage, Unique for a Reason blog run by the U.S. Bishops:

In addition to Archbishop Cordileone’s statement expressing disappointment about the results of the four marriage referenda, Archbishops, Bishops, and Catholic Conferences in the four states where voters voted to redefine marriage on Tuesday have released statements. Their words echo Cardinal Dolan’s conviction, expressed in a statement released after the election: “We will continue to stand in defense of life, marriage, and our first, most cherished liberty, religious freedom.”

Read the statements by the Catholic bishops and Catholic conferences in the four states here.

More Baltimore Ravens Players Stand Up for Biblical Marriage

The Christian Post:

Maryland voters approved same sex-marriage by popular vote Tuesday, a move that has been a cause for debate for Christian Baltimore Ravens safety Bernard Pollard and some of his teammates.

Pollard, 27-year-old NFL safety, said many of his teammates agree with his biblical standpoint on the subject of same-sex marriage.

"When it's all said and done, there are a lot of guys on this team that stand firmly behind what the Bible says -- that a man marries a woman and a woman marries a man," Pollard said in a Mercury News report.

Pollard said he felt that people in power were reshaping important societal principles.

"It shows you that people in high power are changing what was set for a very long time," Pollard said in the Mercury News piece. "These are the principles, man, this is what life is about. But when it's all said and done, they came in and changed it."

Maryland Archbishop: We Must "Redouble Our Efforts to Defend Marriage"

Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore, MD:

"The election results on same-sex marriage should serve as a “wake up call” for Catholics, Archbishop Lori said, demonstrating “our need to redouble our efforts to defend marriage, to preach about what marriage is, and to help people understand it as a unique relationship that does not discriminate against anyone, but is for the good of children and for the good of our society.”

Catholics can continue to work to uphold traditional marriage by strengthening their own marriages and family life, he added.

... A strong advocate of traditional marriage, Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori was among the campaign’s most vocal leaders. He was disappointed to see voters approve same-sex marriage, he said.

“I think that vote will prove not to have been for the common good of our state,” Archbishop Lori said.

The Maryland Catholic Conference, which advocates for public policy on behalf of the state’s bishops, joined the Maryland Marriage Alliance in efforts to overturn the law. Archbishop Lori praised the advocates’ work over the past year.

“So much hard work went into this, and I’m very, very grateful to everyone who worked so hard,” he said. “We will continue to witness to the values of marriage as understood as the union of one man and one woman, as the most sound, secure and loving way to bring children into the world.”

NOM's Peters: "Turnout" Key to Defending Marriage

Charlie Butts at OneNewsNow:

Maryland, Maine, Minnesota and Washington state are voting to protect marriage or to redefine it to be a genderless institution. As Thomas Peters of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) notes, the campaign is in the final hours.

"This is all about getting out the vote and turning out people," he contends. "There's been a lot of focus on polling in all these four states, but the line I keep using -- and it's the truth -- is that the polls don't matter. Hard work and who votes matter. Those are who win elections."

... Peters submits there are three keys to gaining success in all four states Tuesday: "turnout, turnout, turnout."

Today is Election Day: How To Protect Marriage!

If you live in one of the four states voting on marriage today here is how to protect it!

Video: Matt Birk on Voting Against Question 6

Via the Maryland Catholic Conference:

Baltimore Ravens has been a champion of marriage and encourages Marylanders to uphold marriage as a union between one man and one woman. It is possible to be tolerant of the rights of others without redefining the legal definition of marriage. Vote AGAINST Question 6.