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News You Should Know: A Win for Religious Liberty, a Clarification on Title VII, and a Loss for Life

By Michael Farris, Jr. posted on:
February 15, 2019

After a lengthy legal battle, a federal judge ruled in favor of a Christian student group that was being discriminated against at a state school. Also, a federal judge ruled in a Title VII sex discrimination suit, making clear in a separate concurrence that sex discrimination is based on biological sex. However, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked an important pro-life law that could still see its day in the high court, plus ADF Senior Counsel Kristen Waggoner explains the implications of the New York abortion law. All of this from the Alliance Alert team!

ADF in the News

The Hill: Why New York may come to regret its overreach on abortion

At what point can we say human life is worth protecting? ADF Senior Vice President of U.S. Legal Advocacy Kristen Waggoner asks this question in response to the recent New York law—and subsequent copycat attempts in Virginia, Vermont, and Rhode Island—that allows abortion at essentially every stage of the baby's life. As Waggoner points out, advances in technology that allow mothers to see the humanity of their baby have forced abortion advocates to change their rhetoric to become more extreme. This pulls back the curtain to the heart of every abortion argument, and now’s the time for life advocates to be all the bolder in telling the truth.

Religious Freedom

Associated Press: Judge sides with Christian group in religious freedom case

A federal judge has ruled that Christian student groups are allowed to choose leaders that agree with their ideals. Business Leaders in Christ had its official student group status revoked by the University of Iowa after the group declined a leadership position to a student who wouldn’t follow its statement of faith. The judge granted a permanent injunction banning the school from rejecting the group's status saying the school unevenly applied its human rights policy against the Christian group while allowing other groups to choose leaders based on religious views, race, sex, and other protected characteristics.

Marriage and the Family

National Review: Judge Ho’s Excellent Opinion on Title VII, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity

A federal judge ruled that the protected class of “sex” under federal civil rights law does not refer to sexual orientation or gender identity, but rather to biological reality. In his opinion for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, Judge James C. Ho said that common knowledge regarding Title VII sex discrimination cases is that the original writers did not include sexual orientation and gender identity. What's more, Judge Ho wrote, a "blindness" theory rewriting the category of sex does away with bodily privacy protections that sex-separated bathrooms and other such facilities provide.

Sanctity of Life

WORLD: Supreme Court blocks Louisiana abortion law

The U.S. Supreme Court has temporarily stopped Louisiana from requiring abortion businesses to gain admitting privileges to local hospitals while a case challenging the law continues. The state is now unable to enforce the law, pending full legal review, in a decision in which Chief Justice John Roberts joined with Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan. Justice Kavanaugh dissented, saying the ruling was premature in light of the state allowing abortion businesses an extra 45 days to gain admittance before enforcing the law.

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Michael Farris, Jr.

Michael Farris, Jr.

Legal Content Manager

Michael Farris, Jr., serves as Legal Content Manager for Alliance Defending Freedom and is a Virginia-born Idaho convert.


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