Americans United for Separation of Church and State applauds today’s Washington State Supreme Court ruling that a florist cannot cite religious beliefs as justification for discriminating against same-sex couples.
Americans United has joined a legal effort to stop a Mississippi law that critics say allows discrimination against LGBTQ people in the name of religion.
The law, which Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant (R) signed in April 2016, allows religiously affiliated individuals, employers, healthcare providers and others to refuse to serve or help LGBTQ people, even if they receive taxpayer funds. In June, a federal district court declared the law unconstitutional, and the Barber v. Bryant case is on appeal to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
I recently had the privilege of attending the 2017 “Creating Change Conference” hosted by the National LGBTQ Task Force, which took place in Philadelphia last weekend. What an awesome sight in the City of LOVE!
There were more than 4,000 attendees from across the country, and all were energized and ready to stand up and fight for LGBTQ rights, which will no doubt be under attack this year.
This is it. Today Donald J. Trump, a real estate developer and reality TV host with no political experience and a bevy of alarming views, is being sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.
This seemed unthinkable just a few short months ago, but it’s reality, and we have to deal with it.
Advocates and activists I know were certainly disappointed and even angry after the election. But none of them has turned away from activism. If anything, they’re more fired up than ever.
It’s January, which means state houses across the country are beginning to bustle. Legislators are coming back to the capitals to begin their sessions and governors are preparing their next moves. Georgia, Kentucky, Texas, Tennessee and Virginia are among the states that have already convened and in the next few weeks, dozens more join them.
The drama centered on the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill, which funds the Department of Defense and its military operations, is considered must-pass legislation. Thus, it often attracts amendments that promote socially conservative views on military issues.
On Wednesday, along with some of my Americans United colleagues, I attended a LGBTQ summit hosted by Atlantic magazine’s Atlantic Live. The summit’s title, “Unfinished Business,” betrayed the organizers’ expectations of who would be our next president. What could have been a reflection on progress was instead a reminder of how much is now at stake and how much remains to be done.
Americans United for Separation of Church and State said today that it will work vigorously to oppose any attempts by the administration of Donald J. Trump to undermine religious freedom in the United States.
On Sept. 28, members of the Alabama Court of the Judiciary, a body that provides oversight of judges in the state, met for some unusual proceedings: The state’s chief justice, Roy S. Moore, was on trial – for the second time.
I opened up my Washington Post yesterday morning – yes, I still read a paper edition – only to see a full-page ad on page A7 headlined, “DECLARATION OF DEPENDENCE UPON GOD AND HIS HOLY BIBLE.”
“Oh, this ought to be good,” I thought.
Indeed, the ad didn’t disappoint. It stated that people have certain rights given to them by the Creator and among them “is the right to exercise our Christian beliefs as put forth in God’s Holy Bible.”