SCOTUS To Decide If Arizona Town Is Discriminating Against Churches


The U.S. Supreme Court has handed down a number of rulings in the past week as its current term winds down. By and large, the ideologically diverse panel of justices has upheld traditionally conservative ideals in its latest rulings.

Perhaps the most notable decision was Monday’s ruling in favor of the religious freedom of so-called ‘closely held’ corporations – those owned by a small group of individuals. Such businesses, the court ruled in a 5-4 vote, should not be forced to provide medicine designed to end a pregnancy in violation of the religious values of their owners.

While the decision was just the latest blow to Barack Obama’s already beleaguered healthcare law, many believers across the nation also saw it as a reinforcement of religious freedom.

Another ruling with religious undertones restored the right of pro-life advocates in Massachusetts to stand near abortion facilities in an effort to share alternatives to the deadly procedure with clients.

The court will have another opportunity to weigh in on a faith-based issue later this year, according to recent reports. Justices confirmed Tuesday that they will hear an appeal from a Gilbert, Ariz. church, which claims the city unfairly holds religious facilities to stricter advertising regulations than other organizations.

Good News Community Church contends that local houses of worship are limited to signs that are a maximum of six square feet and may only put them out within 14 hours of an advertised event. Political and other signage, however, can be much larger and remain on display for months at a time.

Two lower courts found that the town is within its rights to impose differing rules on sign placement based on the parties involved, provided the regulations are not based on the sign’s content. The church is hoping to convince the nation’s highest court to reverse those rulings.

The Supreme Court will consider the case when it reconvenes this fall.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

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