Court Rulings Secure Greater Religious Freedom For All Americans
- By Alan Sears
- Posted Sep 4, 2012
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August was a wonderful month for your liberty at Alliance Defending Freedom, in which God has reminded us time and again, across a spectrum of important cases, how much He is blessing your good prayers and generous support for the work of defending religious freedom across our nation. Some highlights:
On August 16, the New Mexico Supreme Court agreed to hear our appeal in a case many of you have expressed particular concern about – the case of Elaine Huguenin, an Albuquerque photographer forced by the state Human Rights Commission to pay thousands of dollars for declining to use her artistic skills to help two women “celebrate” a same-sex “commitment” ceremony.
“Americans in the marketplace should not be subjected to legal attacks for simply abiding by their beliefs,” says Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Jordan Lorence. “The Constitution clearly prohibits the state from forcing unwilling artists to advance a message with which they disagree.”
On August 27, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that two elected state officials – both on record as opposing the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman – lacked the legal authority to change the title of a proposed marriage amendment on this fall’s ballot. The court ordered the officials to instead use the original ballot title written by the Minnesota legislature when it proposed the amendment. The two officials, the Secretary of State and the Attorney General, had deliberately changed and distorted that original title to one more negative and misleading, in order blur the nature of the question being decided (thus confusing voters and leading them to vote against it).
“Minnesotans deserve to have free and fair elections,” says Lorence, who argued as lead counsel in the case, representing numerous state legislators and the committee supporting passage of the amendment. “They deserve to know precisely what they are voting for.
On August 29, a Tennessee federal court refused to stop public invocations in Hamilton County, while an Alliance Defending Freedom-backed lawsuit on behalf of that county moves forward.
“Since this nation’s founding, public meetings have been opened with prayer,” says Senior Counsel Brett Harvey. “There is no legal reason why Hamilton County’s citizens should be denied this freedom under the county’s policy, which the court today affirmed as constitutional.”
Coast to coast, our gracious Lord is daily blessing – for you, for your family, for your nation – this crucial legal work your gifts and prayerful encouragement make possible. Please continue to pray for all of our attorneys as they defend the constitutionally protected religious freedom of you and your family in our nation’s courtrooms.
Author: Alan Sears