White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Wednesday there is an “absolute double standard” because churches across the country are still facing coronavirus restrictions preventing them from holding services, while demonstrators have been able to pack together in large protests with little social distancing. “There are absolutely double standards that we’ve seen,” McEnany said. She added: “People should be allowed to worship. We have a First Amendment in this country. There’s a way to safely do it.” The press secretary pointed to a task force set up by the Justice Department to look at civil liberties during coronavirus shutdowns. McEnany said President Trump “absolutely sees an issue” with double standards, adding that there had been cases where people worshipping from their cars had been targeted by law enforcement officers. When asked about Trump’s outcries against mail-in voting in the November election, McEnany responded: “I think there’s a safe way to vote if there’s a safe way to protest.” Regarding a possible spike in coronavirus cases following the widespread protests, McEnany said “we’re monitoring that,” but added that the White House was pleased with the month-over-month decline in daily new cases. She said that in April, the U.S. saw an average of 30,000 daily new cases; 25,000 daily new cases in May, and was currently on track to see 20,000 new cases daily in June. Still, McEnany said the president was happy with the progress of houses of worship reopening after he announced a policy deeming them “essential” in May. “Here we are four weeks later and we haven’t been hearing about rampant outbreaks in places of worship,” the press secretary said. “The First Amendment is a beautiful thing. People have the right to go to church or mosque or synagogue.” In places both hard-hit by coronavirus and facing demonstrations that attract tens of thousands — such as California, New York and New Jersey — church doors were long-shuttered but have recently reopened at 25 percent capacity. Trump slammed Democratic governors who refused to allow churches to reopen. Trump announced during a press briefing that houses of worship are allowed to open Memorial Day weekend: “If they don’t do it, I will override the governors.” “The churches are not being treated with respect by a lot of the Democrat governors,” Trump told reporters on the White House lawn. “I want to get the churches open, and we’re going to take a very strong position on that very soon … including mosques.” “Churches, to me, they’re so important in terms of the psyche of our country,” he said. “I think churches are essential.” The Justice Department (DOJ) has rebuked a number of states for cracking down on churches during the coronavirus pandemic. The DOJ sided with a Virginia church suing Gov. Ralph Northam after police threatened a pastor with jail time or a $2,500 fine for violating lockdown restrictions by holding a service on Palm Sunday. U.S. Attorney General William Barr made it clear in April that federal prosecutors should “be on the lookout” for overly restrictive state and local shutdown orders that may infringe on people’s constitutional rights — especially when it comes to the First Amendment. The DOJ also supported Kevin Wilson, the pastor of Lighthouse Fellowship Church on Chincoteague Island, who held a service on April 5 with 16 people in a church that could fit 293 people. He was later served a summons by police.
..which, of course, is unconstitutional and ridiculous. We applaud President Trump sticking up for the First Amendment and religious liberty, and we applaud Kayleigh exposing the hypocrisy of these Democrat governors and politicians who want to keep churches closed under the false pretense of guarding against the Wuhan virus…and yet, they’re the first to violate their own directives and march elbow-to-elbow (so much for “social distancing”) and without wearing face masks as they protest. The “double standard” and hypocrisy is beyond brazen. If the mobs can “protest” without any regard for social distancing or wearing masks, then churches should at the very least be allowed to reopen while respecting what those mobs don’t.
Colorado baker Jack Phillips was back in court Thursday after a lawyer filed a second lawsuit against him for refusing to create a gender-transition “birthday cake.” Phillips, who was victorious at the U.S. Supreme Court in 2018 following years of litigation for refusing to make a custom cake for a same-sex wedding in 2012 — at a time when the state of Colorado did not recognize same-sex marriage — is again being represented by the Alliance Defending Freedom. Despite the high court’s 7-2 ruling in his favor two years ago, which found that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission had shown “clear and impermissible hostility” on the basis of Phillips’ religion and violated the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the same state agency pursued another case against Phillips because he declined to make a cake celebrating transgenderism. Phillips filed a lawsuit against the state alleging harassment and it subsequently dropped the matter. After that, a local trans activist and attorney named Autumn Scardina called Phillips’ Denver-area bakery to order a custom made gender-transition cake. Scardina waited past the appeal deadline so he could file a new lawsuit in a different court. Scardina is seeking more than $100,000 in damages, fines, and attorney’s fees. The state court heard oral arguments in the case on Thursday. ADF has filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Scardina is now claiming in this latest legal action, which was filed in the District Court for the city and county of Denver, that Phillips violated Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act and Consumer Protection Act by refusing to bake what the plaintiff said was a birthday cake. This birthday cake, as described in the lawsuit, was to be blue on the outside and pink on the inside to represent Scardina’s decision to self-identify as a woman. “Masterpiece Cakeshop said before the Supreme Court they would serve any baked good to members of the LGBTQ community. It was just the religious significance of it being a wedding cake. We don’t believe they’ve been honest with the public,” said Scardina’s attorney, Paula Greisen, in an interview with CBS’s Denver affiliate last year. Phillips has long maintained that he does not single out lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or trans-identified individuals regarding his custom orders. However, he’s long maintained that he will not use his creative talents to support messages that conflict with his faith. Thus, he will not make cakes that celebrate Halloween, drug use, or cakes that disparage people, including those who identify as LGBT. “It wasn’t enough for Jack to lose 40 percent of his business after Colorado pursued him the first time. It wasn’t enough for Jack to have to defend his freedoms all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. And it wasn’t enough for Jack and his family to endure years of harassment and even death threats,” ADF noted on its website Wednesday. “For some, it won’t be enough until Masterpiece Cakeshop closes its doors and Jack Phillips is in financial ruin. They want Jack, an average American business owner, to pay a hefty price—all because he wants to live according to his faith. It is time to leave Jack alone,” ADF added. The Supreme Court ruling in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission has been seen as one of the more important modern religious liberty cases to reach the high court. Though a decisive majority of justices sided with Phillips, the scope of the ruling was narrow in that it focused on the Colorado Commission’s lack of neutrality. The high court did not weigh in on the deeper conflict between anti-discrimination statutes and the free exercise of religion and free speech.
This poor guy, Jack Phillps, can’t seem to get a break from these people! He really needs to start a GoFundMe page for his ongoing legal bills just to fight off the gay mafia which won’t rest til he’s out of business permanently. As we said back when he won his last case at the Supreme Court in a decisive 7-2 ruling, Jack has EVERY right to deny service to anyone he so chooses, if he feels it would be counter to his religious beliefs. And, freedom of association is a right guarantied to every American by our Constitution, and that decision by the Supremes only affirmed that. On this Easter Sunday, we wish Mr. Phillips all the best in his latest legal challenge.
Uncategorized and tagged Big government, Christian persecution, Colorado, Courts, First Amendment, Jack Phillips, legal, Materpiece Cakeshop, political correctness, Religious freedom on .
April 12, 2020
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A 78-year-old cross on public property in Florida targeted by atheist groups will remain standing after a victory in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. The court ruled Wednesday that the Bayview Cross in Pensacola, which was built ahead of World War II as a place for the community to gather, does not violate the Constitution. “The Supreme Court has now made clear that religious symbols are an important part of our nation’s history and culture,” Luke Goodrich, vice president and senior counsel at Becket, said in a statement. The federal appeals court ruled the cross is constitutional, noting it has become “embedded in the fabric of the Pensacola community” and that removing it could “strike many as aggressively hostile to religion.” Four individuals, represented by the American Humanist Association and the Freedom From Religion Foundation, sued the city in 2016, demanding the cross be torn down. Pensacola Mayor Grover Robinson celebrated the ruling. “Pensacola is a historic city with a rich and diverse history. The Bayview Cross is an important part of that history as a symbol of our community’s coming together during a national crisis,” Robinson said. “Today the citizens of Pensacola will celebrate our long-awaited victory and the preservation of the Bayview Cross.” The decision came after the June 2019 Supreme Court’s landmark religious liberty case, American Legion v. American Humanist Association, in which First Liberty Institute successfully defended the World War I memorial cross in Bladensburg, Md. “The Supreme Court made clear in The American Legion decision that the days of governments roaming the land to scrub all public symbols of faith are over,” Mike Berry, general counsel to First Liberty Institute, said. “We’re thrilled to see our victory in that case already making an impact and protecting religious freedom across the country.” Monica Miller, American Humanist Association legal director and senior counsel, said the group is exploring all their options, calling it a “devastating blow” to the Establishment Clause.
Oh WHAAAA Monica! This is an OUTSTANDING decision by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, and one we should ALL be celebrating. It is a clear and decisive victory for our religious freedoms. Despite what these whining atheists would have you believe, the 1st Amendment only says, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
prohibiting the free exercise thereof..” Our founders who wrote that had fled religious persecution in Great Britain where there was an official national religion. So, they wanted to make sure that there was no official religion of the United States. BUT, our founders didn’t want religion (especially Christianity) banned from the public, or from our public schools…which is where that second part comes in. In other words, we have freedom OF religion, but not freedom FROM religion. Thank God.
A pair of Christian artists can’t be forced by the city government of Phoenix to make invitations for same-sex marriages, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Monday. Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski, the owners of Brush & Nib Studio, were accused of violating a local anti-discrimination ordinance. Monday’s 4-3 decision reversed a lower-court ruling that favored the city. “An individual has autonomy over his or her speech and thus may not be forced to speak a message he or she does not wish to say,” the court’s majority decision read. Duka, a calligrapher, and Koski, a painter, were threatened with six months jail time and $2,500 in fines for every day they were in violation of the ordinance. They are now celebrating their judicial victory as “a huge win for religious freedom and freedom of speech.” Duka and Koski told “Fox News @ Night” last year they “serve all people” and decided to challenge the law to defend “the right of artists to create freely.” “Joanna and Breanna work with all people; they just don’t promote all messages,” Alliance Defending Freedom senior counsel Jonathan Scruggs, who argued on the pair’s behalf, said in a statement. “They, like all creative professionals, should be free to create art consistent with their convictions without the threat of government punishment.” Writing for the majority, Justice Andrew Gould concluded that the city of Phoenix “cannot apply its Human Relations Ordinance” to force Brush & Nib to “create custom wedding invitations celebrating same-sex wedding ceremonies in violation of their sincerely held religious beliefs.” “Duka and Koski’s beliefs about same-sex marriage may seem old-fashioned, or even offensive to some,” Gould wrote. “But the guarantees of free speech and freedom of religion are not only for those who are deemed sufficiently enlightened, advanced, or progressive. They are for everyone.”
Exactly!! And well said, your Honor. We applaud this outstanding decision by the AZ Supreme Court. Like the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in favor of a Colorado baker for a similar situation, this is a BIG victory for freedom of speech and freedom of religion…some of our most basic values. Excellent!! 🙂