There’s One BIG Problem With The Supreme Court’s Gay Marriage Case That No One’s Talking About

On April 28, 2015, nine unelected lawyers drawn from three elite law schools (Harvard, Yale, and Columbia) listened to 90 minutes of oral argument about same-sex marriage and then retreated behind a wall of red velvet drapes to confer secretly about whether the U.S. Constitution requires that the U.S. Supreme Court impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation.

Consider for a moment the process by which that decision will be reached. When the Court decided to hear the Obergefell consolidated cases from the Sixth Circuit, that decision was reached in secret. The Justices consult only with their colleagues and their law clerks, also drawn from elite law schools. When a decision in the case is issued, presumably before the end of the current term toward the end of June, the Court will address only those issues argued by parties and the amici curiae that it cares to address. Its opinion will contain only those reasons for its decision that the Court chooses to reveal. The majority decision may be agreed to by as few as five of these nine justices, unaccountable to no one but themselves. And then, the Court will expect the American people to set aside their individual and collective judgment and passively abide by whatever decision is reached — based on a doctrine found nowhere in the U.S. Constitution — “judicial supremacy.”

Although the Supreme Court’s only constitutional responsibility is to resolve “cases” and “controversies” brought before it, the High Court often acts as if it has been entrusted with the raw power to decide for us the most important public policy issues facing the nation. While the Court would have us believe that those decisions are mandated by faithful adherence to the constitutional text, the truth lies elsewhere. In his autobiography, Justice William O. Douglas provided a glimpse behind the curtain as to how the Supreme Court really works. He explained that Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes had once explained to him:  “[a]t the constitutional level where we work, ninety percent of any decision is emotional. The rational part of us supplies the reasons for supporting our predilections.”

We have been working in the judicial vineyard in support of traditional marriage for many years. When one of the cases now being decided by the U.S. Supreme Court (DeBoer v. Snyder) was before the Sixth Circuit, we filed an amicus curiae brief. In the U.S. Supreme Court, we filed another amicus brief. When the Supreme Court decided the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) case (U.S. v. Windsor) in 2013, we filed three briefs, one at the petition stage, one on the merits, and one on the jurisdictional question; and in the Proposition 8 case (Hollingsworth v. Perry), we filed briefs at the petition stage and one on the merits. Even before that, we filed a brief in 2003 in Lawrence v. Texas when the U.S. Supreme Court began down this short road to same-sex marriage while denying that it was doing so. In total, working with groups like the U.S. Justice Foundation and Public Advocate of the United States, we have now filed a dozen appellate briefs over the past 15 years addressing the issue of “homosexual rights: in one context or another.

Although the judicial trend to embrace “homosexual rights” is undeniable, we certainly have not given up hope about the Court’s decision. In fact, it is our belief that the case for same-sex marriage is so pathetically weak that the Court may understand that it would suffer a crippling embarrassment once the People come to really understand that in no way does the U.S. Constitution command same-sex marriage.

But our role now, while hoping for the best, is to prepare for the worst — and that worst could be terrible indeed. Part of our last Supreme Court brief was published by The American Vision under the name “12 Reasons homosexual marriage will wreck the nation.” If you need additional reasons to give your concentrated attention to this issue in the coming days, you will find those reasons in that article.

The American people need to use the short days remaining before that momentous decision is reached to determine how to respond to an adverse decision. Will they yield to a U.S. Supreme Court that claims the power to override state constitutional and statutory provisions governing domestic relations (an area of law which has historically belonged exclusively to the states)?  Will they sit back while unelected judges decide for them one of the most important public policy issues of our lifetime? Or will they resist — and, if so, what tools are available to stand against this judicial tyranny?

If you have not yet signed the “Pledge in Solidarity to Defend Marriage,” supported by Dr. James Dobson, Pastor Rick Scarborough, attorney Matthew Staver, Deacon Keith Fournier, and others, we urge you to do so. That pledge was an excellent first step.

To continue the battle, and to think through these many issues involved, a small group of lawyers and public policy experts experienced in this area have resolved to publish a series of a dozen or more articles to help inform their countrymen. You will not read these articles in the Establishment Media. However, thankfully, a number of publications, blogs, and organizations have agreed to publish this series of articles, as they are written. And, when we see other important articles, such as Robert Reilly’s piece “The New Gnosticism of the Homosexual Movement,” we will bring these articles to your attention.

We know that some of you have grown weary of reading articles about homosexual issues. Yet, these issues cannot be ignored. Please look for these articles as they are published. These articles will be structured to inform about the issues which each American must think through in order to develop his own position, including:

  • Does the Fourteenth Amendment Really Mandate Homosexual Marriage?
  • Must a Decision of the U.S. Supreme Court be Obeyed as the Supreme Law of the Land?
  • Does Romans 13 Require that Christians Yield to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage?
  • Why Were Biblical, Moral, and Religious Arguments Ignored By the Parties Arguing to the U.S. Supreme Court?
  • Have the Federal Judges Deciding in Favor of a Constitutional Right to Same-Sex Marriage Cases Truly Behaved Judicially?
  • What Would Be the Consequences of Mandating Same-Sex Marriage for the Church and Christian Organizations?
  • What Would Be the Consequences of Mandating Same-Sex Marriage for the Traditional Family?
  • How Should Governors, Attorneys General, State Legislatures, and Other State Officers Respond to a Decision to Mandate Same-Sex Marriage?
  • Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage by use of the U.S. Constitution’s “Good Behavior” Clause?
  • Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage by Using its Power to Limit the Jurisdiction of the Federal Courts?
  • How Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage using its Appropriation Power to Prohibit the Expenditure of Funds to Implement the Decision at the National Level?
  • How Should U.S. Citizens Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage in their various roles as members of grand juries, members of petit juries, taxpayers, and voters?

Although many of us find it increasingly difficult to recognize the nation that we grew up in, we can draw strength from the fact that we still live in a Constitutional Republic, and that our government still operates largely by the “consent of the governed.” And, as Americans, we have the right to determine to withhold our consent from the actions of government officials —if we believe those actions to be lawless. Whatever the U.S. Supreme Court will do, we are each accountable for how we respond. Voltaire counseled that “It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.” Therefore, there could be personal consequences for each person who chooses the route of resistance; but ultimately, each of us is responsible to God, not just to man.

We invite each of you to consider the arguments made in these articles, and then decide for yourself exactly what you believe–and even more importantly, how you will respond.

Should you want to help support this important work, contributions may be made to the U.S. Justice Foundation.

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William J. Olson served in three positions in the Reagan Administration. Herbert W. Titus taught Constitutional Law for 26 years, and concluded his academic career as the Founding Dean of Regent Law School. Together, they have filed over 80 briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, and scores more in lower courts, addressing important public policy issues. They now practice law together at William J. Olson, P.C. They can be reached at traditionalmarriage@lawandfreedom.com or twitter.com/Olsonlaw.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

PETA Has A Major Problem With The Name Of This Country’s Oldest Pub

According to recent reports, what is thought to be England’s oldest pub is facing mounting pressure to change its name. Ye Olde Fighting Cocks received a letter from the United Kingdom chapter of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals suggesting the landmark’s name is offensive to chickens.

“We wrote the pub owners asking them to consider changing the establishment’s name to Ye Olde Clever Cocks,” the group explained, “—in recognition of society’s growing compassion for animals and in celebration of intelligent, sensitive chickens.”

Capture

For the business’ landlord, however, the request seems ridiculous. Christo Tofalli assured the pub’s patrons that he has no intention of rechristening the historic destination.

“Every time someone comes into this pub,” he said, “they are being exposed to a bit of the country’s history and we celebrate the fact that cock fighting was abolished more than 150 years ago.”

Judging from public reaction, it seems the pub’s owners have far more support than the animal rights activists calling for the change. PETA has since closed the comments section of its article advocating a name change; however, the lone remaining reply comes from Dave Trenberth, who described himself as a supporter of the organization who nonetheless opposes this proposal.

“Normally I agree with and support PETA’s stance on animal welfare,” he wrote, “but this is a bit silly. I actually had to check that the date wasn’t April 1st. There are more important issues!”

Meanwhile, Ye Olde Fighting Cocks has received an outpouring of support that, according to its Facebook page, generally falls into one of three categories.

Capture

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

Watch: Pastor Shares One Thing America Is Doing That He ‘Never Thought’ It Would

In a recent speech at an event hosted by the Family Research Council, pastor and former candidate for Virginia lieutenant governor E.W. Jackson opined on the moral degradation he believes has fundamentally changed the American experience.

Declaring that it often “seems like we are living in a foreign land,” Jackson told attendees at last week’s Watchmen on the Wall conference that Christian values are being attacked on numerous fronts.

“I never thought there would be a day when my nation would persecute the Bible-believing Christian for standing for what the word of God says,” he lamented, “and reward those who come against it as if they are heroes, as if they are great Americans for standing up against God. But that’s where we are.”

Specifically, he cited issues like abortion and marriage to illustrate his point.

“I never thought that I would see the day when people would brag about their ability to destroy children in the womb,” Jackson continued, “but that’s exactly what we have today – and not only brag about it, but demand that your taxpayer dollars go to support the destruction of unborn children.”

He went on to say that many in America “don’t care what God said about marriage” and have vowed to redefine the institution to reflect their own values.

“It ought to make us weep that so many have hardened their hearts toward Him,” he said, “and we know that our nation is suffering as a result.”

Is Rev. Jackson’s assessment valid? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

ISIS-Connected Islamists Say Something Scary About Phoenix Mosque Protest

As reported by Western Journalism, armed bikers are planning to protest outside of a Phoenix mosque Friday evening. Now, one of the organizers of the event, Jon Ritzheimer, states he has received death threats against himself and his family.

He wrote on Facebook Thursday night:

Credible threats being made and now having to move my family into hiding. Real nice Islam. Thank you for showing your true colors. I have not made any threats nor do I condone any threats. I’ve been preaching peace this whole time and once again Islam shows its lack of tolerance for others freedom. I will say that I think this cartoon contest is completely stupid, but this is all to show what Islam is about. The only one threatening with violence and that has a track record of it is them. Rally going on as planned.

Ritzheimer emphasized he does not want violence at the rally; “I WANT PEACE,” he wrote on Facebook.

Over 1000 people have indicated on Facebook that they plan to attend the event, which has caused Phoenix police to be working feverishly to ensure the public’s safety. The police may close roads in the vicinity, and area businesses and other organizations have been notified.

“We’re working hard with our federal partners and other city departments to make sure we have enough officers; road closures. I think it’s going to be a traffic nightmare among other things,” Phoenix Police Chief Joe Yahner said.

The Islamic Community Center, where the protest will take place, is located in the north part of the city just off the busy I-17 freeway, a few miles south of Phoenix’s Metro Center Mall.

The Denny’s restaurant parking lot, where the rally attendees plan to gather before going to the mosque, plans to close for a few hours Friday evening.

One Islamist posted Ritzheimer’s home address online.

Ritz home address

Another issued a death threat against those attending the rally.

Tweet - threating Islam rally attenders

In the Facebook event post, Ritzheimer encouraged event attendees to bring their firearms. “This Islamic Community Center is a known place that the 2 terrorist(s) [responsible for the Texas attack] frequented. People are also encouraged to utilize (their) second amendment right at this event just (in case) our first amendment comes under the much anticipated attack.”

Ariz. Gov. Doug Ducey hopes common sense will prevail at the event.

“Of course I’m a believer in free speech and the First Amendment. I’m also a believer in good judgment and common sense,” he told local CBS affiliate KPHO.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

Watch: Natalee Holloway’s Father Reveals New Twist That Has Him Hopeful For 1st Time In Years

A new lead in the Natalee Holloway case could bring closure to her father, Dave, who has been searching for his daughter for over a decade.

Natalee first disappeared in 2005 while vacationing in Aruba. It is widely believed that Dutch national Joran Van Der Sloot was responsible for her disappearance. While a body was never found, Van Der Sloot was convicted by a Peruvian court in 2010 for the murder of another woman, Stephany Flores. Natalee was declared legally dead in January 2012.

Speaking to CNN’s Martin Savidge recently, Dave Holloway said he got a tip from a man named Jurrien de Jong, who claims he saw the incident occur on May 30, 2005, the night Natalie first went missing.

He says that a car pulls up and Joran and Natalee get out of the vehicle. This is on May 30, (2005) and this vehicle pulls into the parking lot at the Marriott hotel, and you can see a construction site and you can see the Holiday Inn … and this area is enclosed with a chained fence. He says that Natalee says,

‘Well the gate’s locked,’ and (Van der Sloot) says something about, ‘Well I know a trick,’ and somehow he, I guess, unwraps the chain and they go in.

“Then he sees them go across the construction site, and they get up on the platform, which I presume to be the foundation of the Spyglass Tower, and they run up to an area that’s got half of a stairway built and they go up that and he loses sight of them,” Dave continued.

Then, approximately five minutes later he says they emerge with Joran carrying Natalee in his arms and apparently he knew that she was not living. He put her down on the concrete slab and then jumped down off of it and put her body down on the ground and then went and dug an opening under the slab and then put her body in it and then covered it back up and walked out.

Savidge asked Holloway about Marriott’s contention that there was no construction in the vicinity during the time of the murder. But Holloway noted he was there two days later on June 1, asserting that “there was definitely construction in that area” due to the fact “it was all chained up.”

“And that’s one of the areas we never searched because we assumed it’s locked up and secured at all times, and they have construction workers there on site. It was something we assumed that that would never need to be searched and it wasn’t,” Holloway said.

After trying to determine the credibility of de Jong’s story, Holloway enlisted the help of private investigator T.J. Ward. Ward called Holloway back several days later, informing him de Jong passed a voice analysis test.

Holloway said that even though de Jong’s story might have some credibility, he’s not going to get his hopes up.

“We had the opportunity about three weeks ago to go to Aruba and check this out and we did with a cadaver dog. We were kind of blocked in the areas that we wanted to do the search so it was kind of a failed mission I guess, so to speak,” Holloway said, adding that he wants that area searched by a dog.

Holloway concluded by telling Savidge he will never stop looking for Natalee. “I mean, your child is off in a foreign country and you want to bring her back home, and I’ve got the means and the ability to go down there and check and do it, and if I’m willing and able to do it, then I always will,” he said.

Do you believe this case will be solved? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth