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CJ

HOBBY LOBBY

HOBBY LOBBY
Hobby Lobby is owned by Christians, and I encourage you to buy there.
I went to our local store today and had a visit with the manager due to some slander I had heard.
It is wise to check out slander, as Christians are really hated.  We must support each other.
I talked to her about Hannukkah items.  I told her Thanksgiving is the first day of Hannukkah this year.
I gave her a suggestion how to promote that.

DO NOT BELIEVE slandar against Christians.  It is usualy lies or exaggerations.


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CJ

Ameristan to Outlaw Christianity
July 15, 2014  
This is scary but no surprise.  We now live in an Islamic nation.
Yes - this is now Ameristan.
All pretense has been dropped, and the anti-Christian left hatred for liberty, our First Amendment and Religious Freedom is now on full display.
After the Supreme Court recent Hobby Lobby opinion, I observed that the left is having an utter meltdown over having one a small measure of control over others wrested away.

Demoncrats in Congress have a legislative Hobby Lobby fix that stands zero chance of passing and would be struck down as unconstitutional even if it did, and The ACLU withdrew support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act because it does not adequately outlaw the practice of Christianity.

Evil or Very Mad    The Hobby Lobby fix
Evil SINator Harry Reid fumed he will ensure that women lives are not determined by 5 white men. To which Justice Clarence Thomas replied, Say what, honky?
http://townhall.com/columnists/ma..._medium=email&utm_campaign=nl
BornAgain2

http://theweek.com/article/index/...ront-in-the-religious-liberty-war
ENDA: The next front in the religious liberty war
How will America balance religious freedom and gay rights?

7/14/14

The American Civil Liberties Union recently joined with gay rights groups in withdrawing their support from a major piece of legislation aimed at ending workplace discrimination against gays and lesbians.

Why would gay rights advocates back out of a bill that fights anti-gay discrimination? Because the Employment Non-Discrimination Act also contains religious liberty protections.

"The provision in the current version of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) that allows religious organizations to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity has long been a source of significant concern to us," reads the joint statement spearheaded by the ACLU. After the Supreme Court's Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision, the activists continued, "it has become clear that the inclusion of this provision is no longer tenable."

Translation: These liberals think it might have been acceptable to allow churches to decline to ordain gay clergy, but if these protections are going to extend to private, for-profit companies like Hobby Lobby, there's too much potential for legal discrimination.

For two decades, ENDA has been near the top of the gay rights legislative agenda. (If you had told me in 1998 that gay marriage would be on the books in a critical mass of states before ENDA, I would have thought you were crazy.) And now the religious liberty provision is fracturing the coalition that has supported ENDA.

America has long carved out a special space for religious practice and conscience in its laws. The First Amendment of the Constitution protects the free exercise of religion, while the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bans most discrimination on the basis of religion, just as it forbids most discrimination based on race and sex.

Sexual orientation is increasingly joining these categories in enjoying protection under anti-discrimination laws. And this ENDA rift is just the latest episode demonstrating how easily religious and sexual identity can come into conflict.

Would a company that saw itself as informed by religious values — say, Hobby Lobby or Chick-fil-A — be discriminating or exercising religious freedom if it passed over a promising gay executive for its CEO position? Would a company like Mozilla be discriminating or promoting a culture of nondiscrimination if it effectively ousted a CEO over his (possibly faith-based) opposition to same-sex marriage?

What if the gay executive in question had never in the course of exercising his duties, as opposed to in his personal life, contradicted the company's stated values? What if the anti–gay marriage executive in question had never been accused of behaving in a discriminatory fashion, save for a personal political donation nobody in the company had even known about?

Obviously, the second example isn't a hypothetical. One could probably also find real-life examples of the first.

Interestingly, the law at the center of the Hobby Lobby case — the Religious Freedom Restoration Act — was passed only a year before ENDA was first introduced in Congress. Many people supported both laws. In theory, the two can be reconciled.

But in practice, many liberals voted for the religious freedom bill to protect the rights of religious minorities, not those of a conservative "moral majority." From this perspective it is easier to allow someone to follow their faith-shaped conscience on smoking peyote than in upholding traditionalist views on human sexuality (though these liberals would retort, with some justice, that peyote has less impact on third parties).

ENDA amended with expansive religious liberty protections is less sweeping than many state and local gay rights ordinances already in force. Like ObamaCare's contraceptive mandates, ENDA without such protections assumes a more crimped definition of religious liberty and practice than was until fairly recently the bipartisan national consensus.

There are two further complications. Many gay rights activists believe faith-based objections to homosexual practice are morally no different than racial hatred. Consequently, they believe the way government treats such objections should be legally no different than racism.

Similarly, many conservative Christians opposed gay rights legislation not to protect their own religious liberty but because they were trying to restigmatize homosexuality. They are only now fighting a rearguard action to protect their religious liberty because they have failed in the first effort.

One of these two approaches may turn out to be a costly miscalculation.
BornAgain2

http://thinkprogress.org/health/2...p-hobby-lobby-contraception-bill/
7/15/14
The GOP’s Plot To Convince You They Support Birth Control

There’s a war over birth control brewing in the Senate, and Republican lawmakers want to make it clear that the GOP is on the right side.

On Tuesday, after Senate Democrats introduced a measure to override the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on Hobby Lobby and clarify that for-profit companies must offer contraceptive coverage, their Republican colleagues announced some forthcoming legislation of their own. As the Hill reports, GOP leadership will introduce a bill that appears to be supportive of women’s access to birth control.

“We plan to introduce legislation this week that says no employer can block any employee from legal access to her FDA-approved contraceptives,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said. “There’s no disagreement on that fundamental point.”

If the final bill is along the lines of the initial reports, however, the GOP’s competing legislation wouldn’t do anything to change the status quo. It certainly wouldn’t ensure that Hobby Lobby employees have insurance coverage for contraception. Instead, it’s simply a way for Republicans to reinforce the point that the high court’s ruling on Hobby Lobby doesn’t inhibit women’s legal access to birth control.

The fact that women are still allowed to purchase every type of FDA-approved birth control has become the central argument used to downplay the impact of the Hobby Lobby case. Of course, it’s certainly true. Contraception remains legal, and the decision to allow some for-profit companies to refuse to cover some types of birth control on religious grounds doesn’t mean that all IUDs, for example, are now banned.

But legality isn’t exactly the same as accessibility. And the Hobby Lobby case was about the latter.

Hobby Lobby supporters typically argue that birth control is still widely accessible because it’s cheap. Conservatives have claimed birth control can cost less than four dollars per month and women can simply buy their contraception at any 7/11. However, it’s important to remember that Hobby Lobby won the right to drop coverage for one of the most expensive types of birth control, intrauterine devices, which can cost up to $1,000 out of pocket. Previous research has confirmed that cost is a serious barrier for the low-income women who may otherwise choose to use IUDs. As the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists noted in its brief in opposition to Hobby Lobby, “Lack of insurance coverage deters many women from choosing a high-cost contraceptive, even if that method is best for her health and lifestyle.”

In that context, it doesn’t matter that IUDs aren’t technically illegal. If women don’t have the insurance benefits to make them affordable, they’re still just as far out of reach.

This issue extends to other types of birth control, too (particularly since it’s possible that other for-profit companies will eventually win the right to drop coverage for all forms of contraception). The oral birth control pill isn’t actually as affordable as some Obamacare opponents make it out to be, and can run up to $1,210 each year in doctor’s visits and prescription costs. Those type of extra costs are partly why women of reproductive age spend 68 percent more on their out-of-pocket medical expenses than men do, and that’s why women have historically been forced to make some tough choices about their reproductive health. Before Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate took effect, some women reported that they tried to save money by failing to take their birth control as directed or by switching to a less effective method.

“What we’re saying is that of course you can support both religious freedom and access to contraception,” McConnell told the Hill. That’s a convenient narrative for a party that is eager to win back female support. But what kind of access are we really talking about?

At the end of the day, if McConnell’s potential legislation is any indicator, Republicans are simply willing to go on the record to affirm that they don’t support outlawing birth control altogether. That shouldn’t necessarily be incredibly reassuring to women. Successful efforts to limit access to women’s health care services don’t typically result from outright bans — for proof, look no further than the fight against abortion. It’s easier to slowly chip away at women’s ability to afford their health care, and the first step in that bigger strategy is to cut off their insurance coverage for it.
BornAgain2

Looks like they're rolling out the "solution" to this USSC Hobby Lobby case that created a "backlash"...

http://news.yahoo.com/obama-lgbt-...-liberty-advocates-201628842.html
Obama’s LGBT Executive Order Threatens Religious Liberty, Say Advocates
7/21/14

Unwilling to wait for Congress to pass the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, Obama signed an executive order Monday prohibiting organizations with federal contracts from discriminating against employees who identify themselves as gay, lesbian, or transgender.

For religious freedom advocates, that could pose a major problem. Obama’s order does not provide an exemption for religious organizations, whereas the ENDA bill before Congress does.

Carmen Fowler LaBerge — president of the Presbyterian Layman Committee – set aside her ordination in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. after the General Assembly opened the door for gays and lesbians to be ordained as ministers in 2010. LaBerge, who defines herself as pro-traditional marriage, believes Obama’s executive order for LGBT non-discrimination will actually discriminate against religious organizations with federal contracts.

“Clearly nobody is in favor of discrimination, so using that language is intended to stir the pot,” LaBerge said in an interview with The Daily Caller Monday. “The question is how do you hold  sincerely held religious beliefs that limit sexual expression to certain relationships and forms in balance with what the government now views as its legitimate role and in defending the rights of a particular group of people. You have a special interest group on both hands, and you have the government clearly favoring one group over another.”

Obama signed an executive order to get what he wanted without waiting for Congress, and that is troubling, LaBerge told TheDC.

“I’m going to assume that the president signed what he signed in order to prevent ENDA from passing with religious exemption, because then the two would be in direct conflict,” LaBerge told TheDC. “I would assume that the Supreme Court would have to be the arbiter of those two. You’d have a law that was an executive order, and a law passed by Congress, and the Supreme Court would have to work that out.”

The Family Research Council’s Senior Fellow for Policy Studies Peter Sprigg released a statement saying there is definitely cause for alarm amongst religious groups.

“Religious faith is not simply a matter of intellectual affirmation but of active practice,” Sprigg said. “A religious organization which is denied the power to require its employees to conduct their lives in a way consistent with the teachings of their faith is an organization which is being denied the right to exercise its religion, period. People with deeply held convictions regarding the morality of certain types of sexual behavior should not be bound by the dictates of President Obama’s agenda.”

LaBerge claims the reason the Obama administration is taking advantage of Christians’ uncertainty and lack of confidence on the issue.

“Obama has heard counsel from Christians supporting what he’s doing and not supporting what he’s doing,” LaBerge told TheDC. “The disunity among Christians is allowing for this kind of confusion and action by the government. You look at the July 2 letter on this subject to the president from a diverse group of religious leaders and and the July 15 letter from an equally diverse group of religious leaders, and while the July 2 letter says, ‘please include the religious exemption,’ you look at the July 15 letter that says, ‘don’t listen to those wingnuts, listen to us instead.’ The disunity among the religious people is allowing the government to do what it’s doing.”

Sprigg says the lack of proper religious freedom also has serious economic consequences.

“The President’s policies are keeping the economy in the tank,” Sprigg said. “He strangled the financial and health sectors by passing a health care law that’s trampling employers’ freedom and crushing their bottom lines. Now, as if those burdens weren’t enough, the President’s party wants to tell companies how they should run their businesses, and how they can and cannot practice their moral convictions and religious faith.”

If Christians and other religious Americans, including Jews and Muslims, are going to make any headway on the issue of religious freedom, LaBerge said, then they must advocate their position on the personal and legislative levels.

“I think you have to do both,” LaBerge told TheDC. “I think this is an issue that has to be addressed on all fronts simultaneously.”
CJ

Elections are so FRAUD-ridden there is no point in voting at all.
Both parties are identical.
The TEA party may be different - thats why GOP hate us.
BornAgain2

http://dailycaller.com/2014/07/23...ndate-exemption-after-court-loss/
7/23/14
Obama Administration Changing Birth Control Mandate Exemption After Court Loss

The Obama administration will release a revamped religious exemption for Obamacare’s mandate to provide contraceptives to employees at no cost, senior officials said Tuesday evening.

The administration filed a brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver Tuesday that announced its plan to create a new exemption.

The change comes after the Supreme Court’s several hits against the birth control mandate and the administration’s work-around for religious nonprofits. The court granted an injunction at the beginning of the month to Wheaton College, a small Christian university in Illinois, clearing it from the administration’s work-around until the pending case against the mandate is concluded. (RELATED: Supreme Court Grants Christian College Injunction Over Obamacare Religious Exemption)

The White House currently requires religious nonprofit employers to sign a federal form to signify their moral objection, which notifies the insurer that it, instead, must provide birth control coverage at no cost to the employee.

Wheaton is one of many religious organizations — including a women’s Catholic religious order, the Little Sisters of the Poor — suing over the exemption, which the college believes violates its religious freedom by forcing it to sign the form, making it complicit in providing contraceptives that violate its religious beliefs.

The Supreme Court said Wheaton was required only to file a letter with the federal government stating its objections instead of filling out the federal form.

In response, the Obama administration is preemptively attempting to change the way its religious exemption functions. It hopes to have a new plan within a month.

“This is part of ensuring that all women have access to contraception coverage,” a senior administration official said in a statement to the press. “The administration believes the accommodation is legally sound, but in light of the Supreme Court order regarding Wheaton College, the Departments intend to augment their regulations to provide an alternative way for objecting non-profit religious organizations to provide notification, while ensuring that enrollees in plans of such organizations receive separate coverage of contraceptive services without cost sharing.”

The Wheaton decision was a surprise to some after the Supreme Court also ruled the requirement for closely held businesses to provide all 20 types of contraceptive coverage to employees violated Congress’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act in the closely-watched Hobby Lobby lawsuit.

Some — most notably Justice Sonia Sotomayor — believed the majority opinion in the Hobby Lobby case buffeted the religious exemption because it cited the workaround as an option that burdened religious employers less than the mandate itself. Sotomayor issued a lengthy dissenting opinion to the injunction for Wheaton in response, signaling that the mandate’s religious exemption may not survive future court battles either.
BornAgain2

Satanic Temple seeks Hobby Lobby-style exemption from anti-abortion laws
http://theweek.com/article/index/...exemption-from-anti-abortion-laws

If Christian business owners cannot be compelled to violate their faith, why should the same protection not apply to Satanists? That's the argument the Satanic Temple is making to claim that, in the wake of the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling, women who share their beliefs should not be forced to follow some of the more restrictive state-level abortion laws to crop up in recent years.

Specifically, the Satanic Temple wants women to be exempt from having to view legally mandated "informational" materials — which it calls "biased" and "medically invalid" — prior to having an abortion. Dozens of states require women to attend counseling before receiving an abortion, while 10 mandate that they receive written materials before undergoing the procedure, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

"While we feel we have a strong case for an exemption regardless of the Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court has decided that religious beliefs are so sacrosanct that they can even trump scientific fact," a spokesperson for the group said in a press release.

The Satanic Temple added that all women who share their belief that the "body is inviolable subject to one's own will alone" — and not merely temple members — should be free to claim the exemption.
- - Jon Terbush
BornAgain2

Ultimately, this is the AGENDA the NWO minions are PUSHING...

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blo...ontrol-is-free-even-conservatives
7/28/14
Everyone Wins When Birth Control Is Free
Dear conservatives: Contraception means fewer abortions and lower costs to taxpayers.


DENVER – About the only reasonable thing in Justice Samuel Alito’s otherwise **** majority opinion on Hobby Lobby was this: the suggestion that maybe the government should find ways to ensure women have cost-free access to birth control. Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., and the Republican Congress who nearly shut down the government over Planned Parenthood are about as likely to do that as bark at the moon, but the idea is based on proven results.

On July 3, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment announced that, thanks to a public-private partnership on contraception access, the state’s teen birth rate dropped by 40 percent and the teen abortion rate dropped by 35 percent in a four-year period. A private funder helped supply long-acting reversible contraceptives – IUDs and hormone implants – which were offered to low-income and uninsured women through state providers. Not only did the abortion and unintended pregnancy rate drop dramatically, Colorado saved an estimate $5.68 in Medicaid funds for every $1 spent on the program.

So here’s my question to all the Republicans out there: If you’re a fiscal conservative who wants fewer abortions and more self-sufficient citizens, why don’t you support the government providing access to free birth control? This used to be a conservative position: George H.W. Bush gave a speech in Denver in 1968 advocating for government-backed family planning.

The Colorado results dovetail with another study done at Washington University in St. Louis in 2012, published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. For three years, participants were provided free birth control, and most chose IUDs and implants. The result? “Changes in contraceptive policy simulating the Contraceptive Choice Project would prevent as many as 41% to 71% of abortions performed annually in the United States,” the study’s authors wrote.

Also worth noting: “Nearly half of the more than 6 million pregnancies that occur each year are unintended, and about 43% of them end in abortion. Further, about 1 million births are unintended, costing U.S. taxpayers about $11 billion a year in associated expenses.”

This is why the Affordable Care Act included birth control without a co-pay - it’s not just good for women’s health, it’s good for America’s taxpayers. And it's why the lawsuits to stop the birth control mandate are not just insulting to women but dumb, counterproductive public policy.

But the types of contraceptives used in the Colorado and St. Louis programs are the very ones that Hobby Lobby and the federal personhood bill sponsors – including Gardner – want to ban. IUDs and hormonal implants are more effective than the pill, especially among low-income, high-risk populations, because they work automatically once in place. Women don’t have to remember to take a pill every day and get a refill every month. They’re also the most expensive, from $500 to $1,000 for the device plus a doctor visit, so women who can’t afford them are less likely to use them.

So why don’t modern conservatives go back to their roots and get behind the government providing free or low-cost birth control?

Here’s why: because the core belief of modern conservatives doesn’t reside in sound public policy. It’s mostly concerned with telling women what to do and punishing them for having sex without permission or approval.
BornAgain2

http://news.yahoo.com/satanists-h...ay-devils-advocate-212212419.html
Satanists Use Hobby Lobby Decision to Play Devil's Advocate
7/30/14

A group of Satanists are using the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision to promote their own political initiatives -- which are the polar opposite of the Christian craft store giant.

The Supreme Court ruling allows Hobby Lobby to opt out of providing contraceptives to employees on the basis of their religious beliefs. Now, The Satanic Temple plans to cite the verdict as justification for the protection of their own beliefs.

The Satanic Temple, a religious group based in New York but with followers across the country, is using the ruling to fight informed consent laws which mandate that women considering abortions must be given state-approved literature about the procedure.

Where they exist, informed consent laws differ by state, with some requiring women to watch videos or read information of varying amounts of time before scheduling their procedures.

"We should only have to review medical or scientific information based solely on fact and not politicized," said Jex Blackmore, the head of the Detroit chapter of The Satanic Temple. "Some of that state-drafted information is medical in nature [but] it's just that it's written in a very biased format."

The group announced the initiative last week and have provided a form letter intended to enable women to opt-out of receiving the pamphlets distributed under the informed consent laws. They contend that the informed consent pamphlets run counter to their religious beliefs. Women are able to print off the opt-out form, fill it out and hand it to their doctor. If the doctor still gives them the state-mandated forms in spite of the letter, The Satanic Temple says it will file a lawsuit on their behalf.

Blackmore said they have not filed any such suits since the initiative was launched.

"It’s an opening statement, as it were," W. James MacNaughton, The Satanic Temple's attorney, told ABC. "It’s a statement from the patient to the physician and to the world at large that 'here’s my position, here's what i believe'. actually going to court and picking the test case actually depends on the facts. At this stage, we don't know who that will be."

The Satanic Temple remains a mystery to many but their spokesman Lucien Greaves told ABC News that they have gained 10,000 members in the past year and a half. They gained notoriety earlier this year when they pushed for a 7-foot Satanic statue to be approved to stand alongside a 10 Commandments monument at the Oklahoma State Capital. The statue is under construction.

Cardozo School of Law professor Marci Hamilton, who has written extensively about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), said that The Satanic Temple's plan to use the Hobby Lobby ruling as the basis for their initiative could be effective if and when they bring a lawsuit to the courts.

"This was inevitable," Hamilton told ABC News. "This is following exactly on that line of thinking that a regulation that impedes the ability of the believer to practice that religion is going to be challenged."


She said that an important distinction to keep in mind is that both the Hobby Lobby decision and The Satanic Temple's initiative both rely on RFRA, which helps individuals fight laws that counter their religious beliefs, as opposed to the First Amendment of the Constitution.

RFRA was passed in 1993 and adds more protections than the Constitution lays out for religious freedom. A number of legal experts, including Hamilton, believe RFRA is unconstitutional. In her view, Hamilton believes RFRA caused "this wave of extreme religious liberty that is untethered from the constitution."

"For those of us who have been working on RFRA issues for two decades... inevitably it was going to be groups that raised claims that made either ordinary Americans or the far right find uncomfortable," Hamilton said.

When it comes to fighting any lawsuits that The Satanic Temple brings forward regarding informed consent laws, it appears that the devil is truly in the details.

"It really puts the conservative Christians and the anti-contraceptive Catholics in a bind: They're going to have to argue that a religious group should lose a RFRA claim that is on par with the Hobby Lobby claim," Hamilton said.

"The courts cant pick and choose between beliefs."
BornAgain2

So Hobby Lobby kept a transgender employee for a long time, but NOT this?

Hobby Lobby Fired Mom Of Two For Being Pregnant, Refused Unemployment Benefits, Report Says
http://www.inquisitr.com/1383107/...nemployment-benefits-report-says/
7/30/14

Hobby Lobby, the Oklahoma-based chain of arts-and-crafts stores, became a household name in June when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the self-proclaimed Christian company‘s right not to offer insurance coverage for contraceptives that the chain’s owners feel violate their religious beliefs.

But in a case that will never go to the Supreme Court, or any court, Hobby Lobby was not as willing to support an employee’s right to bear children, according to working mom Felicia Allen, who told her story to the news site RH Reality Check.

The now 32-year-old mom had two children, but says she was unaware that she was pregnant with her third when she took a job as a part-time cashier at a Hobby Lobby outlet in July of 2010.

She soon found out, and says she knew that she had not worked at the store long enough to qualify for protection under the federal Family Medical Leave Act, so she asked her supervisor if her job would still be there when she got back from maternity leave. The boss told her it would be.

“I felt like everything was OK,” Allen said. “I had talked to my boss, and she let me know that everything would be OK. I would still have my job.”

But when she tried to return to work after taking just three weeks off to have her child, the store told her she was fired. Under the 1993 Family Medical Leave Act, mothers are allowed up to 12 weeks off without losing their jobs.

“She can’t terminate me because I have to go have my child,” Allen said. “I started asking everybody on the job, ‘Can they do this?’ And even the assistant manager who had just got hired [said,] ‘No, that’s not right.’”

But only did Hobby Lobby refuse to budge on allowing the mom of what were now three kids back to work to help support her family, the company attempted to deny her unemployment benefits.

While Hobby Lobby has so far declined to comment on Allen’s case, the mom says that the company came up with a false story, charging that she had refused to take a personal leave offered to her.

“How can you be Christian and lie about something to hinder your employee or don’t want them to come back after they’ve had their baby?” Allen said to RH Reality Check writer Sofie Resnick. ” I feel like that’s not being Christian at all.”

She eventually won her dispute over unemployment benefits, but Allen cannot pursue her discrimination allegations in court because, while Hobby Lobby itself took its contraception case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, the company makes employees sign a waiver of their rights to sue the company in court, allowing Hobby Lobby employees to resolve disputes only through an arbitration process.

Proverbs 6:16  These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
Pro 6:17  A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
Pro 6:18  An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
Pro 6:19  A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.
BornAgain2

http://www.washingtonpost.com/new...hobby-lobby-and-nervous-liberals/
8/1/14
Justice Ginsburg on gay marriage, Hobby Lobby, and nervous liberals

The Justices are publicly unburdening themselves on major issues before the Court with much greater frequency and candor in recent years. In a wide-ranging interview with Mark Sherman of the Associated Press, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg offers some glimpses into her thinking on three controversial issues and gives liberals who fret about her health a piece of her mind.

On gay marriage: “I think the court will not do what they did in the old days when they continually ducked the issue of miscegenation,” Ginsburg said. “If a case is properly before the court, they will take it.”

There are two interesting takeaways from this remark. One is the comparison of challenges to prohibitions on same-sex marriage to challenges against bans on inter-racial marriage, which the Court put off deciding until Loving v. Virginia in 1967 when only 16 states still banned it.  We don’t have the transcript of the interview, so it’s possible the precise question Sherman asked primed her for the comparison. But if there was any doubt that comparisons to Loving would find a receptive audience among some Justices, that should now be over. Anyone making that comparison is pointing in only one direction in terms of result.

Second, a few Court-watchers had previously interpreted Justice Ginsburg’s remarks about the Court having moved too quickly on abortion rights in Roe to mean that she would want to move slowly on same-sex marriage. If she ever really harbored hesitation on the issue, she’s gotten over it. She did note that the case would have to be “properly” before the Court. But at the very least the Utah case will be there shortly and in that case the state is defending its marriage limitation.

On Hobby Lobby, the decision interpreting federal law to allow for-profit corporations to refuse on religious grounds to cover employees’ contraceptives expenses, Justice Ginsburg speculated about how gender might have influenced the Justices:

   “I have no doubt that if the court had been composed of nine women the result would have been different in Hobby Lobby,” Ginsburg said. She said, though, that she hasn’t lost hope for the five men on the court who formed the majority in favor of Hobby Lobby. “As long as one lives, one can learn,” she said.

It’s not clear that she’s right about gender driving the result. A Supreme Court of nine women appointed by President George W. Bush might well have decided the case the same way the Hobby Lobby court did. Conversely, a Court comprised of nine men appointed by President Obama might have come out the way the dissenters did. In fact, the 5-4 split did not mirror gender lines; it perfectly matched the political party affiliation of the appointing presidents. That may be an accident, but close study of federal-court appointments in recent years suggests it’s not. It’s also doubtful that there’s a necessarily gendered way to understand, say, the meaning of “person” for purposes of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act or the Dictionary Act, or for how to determine the interplay of these two statutes.

To be fair, Justice Ginsburg was probably making the deeper but still controversial point that women and men have different experiences in life–especially when it comes to reproduction–that will incline them toward a more or less sympathetic view of the compelling need for affordable access to certain contraceptives and to the necessity of ensuring that access through health-coverage mandates.

And finally Justice Ginsburg, who was born eleven days after Franklin Roosevelt took the oath of office for the first time, directed a few comments at progressives who think she should retire now before Republicans take control of the Senate and block a liberal Obama appointee to replace her:

   “Right now, I don’t see any sign that I’m less able to do the job,” she said. She directed a feisty response to law professors Randall Kennedy of Harvard Law School and Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the law school at the University of California at Irvine, who have called on her to step down now. “So who do you think could be nominated now that would get through the Senate that you would rather see on the court than me?” she said.

Absent elimination of the filibuster for Supreme Court appointments, she’s right that she’s more congenial to progressives than her confirmable replacement this summer would be. But liberals might still prefer a less liberal replacement for her now rather than taking the chance that only an even less liberal one would be confirmable if Republicans control the Senate starting in January 2015. Worse yet from their perspective, if she leaves the Court after a Republican presidential victory in 2016, she would be replaced by a conservative Justice whose votes would surely change outcomes across many areas of federal policy and constitutional law. Of course, the Republicans could fail to take the Senate this November and/or the GOP nominee could lose the presidential race in 2016 and/or Justice Ginsburg could serve ably for another decade or more (Justice Stevens retired at 90 and was as sharp as ever). There are a lot of contingencies and error-prone judgments built into these sorts of strategic calculations. It’s anybody’s guess, but it’s only one person’s decision. And she’s made up her mind. She’s staying.

**Uhm...Roe V Wade was made law by REPUBLICAN-APPOINTED justices(in 1973, and then in 1992 when it was upheld). Ronald Reagan appointed 2 of them, Gerald Ford appointed Stevens, and Richard Nixon appointed Harry Blackmun.
BornAgain2

http://www.npr.org/2014/08/05/338...oked-a-hole-in-the-corporate-veil
8/5/14
Hobby Lobby Ruling May Have Poked A Hole in The 'Corporate Veil'

Legal scholars are still sorting out the possible implications of the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision. While the case dealt directly with birth control coverage and the Affordable Care Act, it could even be cited in future bankruptcy cases.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Contraceptive coverage under the Affordable Care Act was at the center of the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling this past June. That ruling will likely have broader implications for all types of businesses. In fact, some legal scholars are raising concerns that the decision may inadvertently tear a hole in an important legal concept called the corporate veil. As NPR's Wade Goodwyn reports, the veil is the legal barrier that separates and protects the assets of owners and shareholders from a corporation's creditors.

WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: Have a seat everyone please. I know it's summer but let's learn something to make our mommas proud. Today we're going to talk about a legal concept that's a key pillar of corporate law. It's called the corporate veil, it's a simple idea.

GREG CRESPI: The general rule of law is that you can't go after the shareholders of a corporation and hold them personally liable for corporation debts. The liability stops with the corporation.

GOODWYN: Everybody got that? Greg Crespi is a veteran corporate law professor at SMU. The professor says, that without the corporate veil nobody would ever invest in a business venture because nobody would be willing to risk their own house and money if it failed. Dr. Crespi wrote an academic paper that was used by Hobby Lobby's lawyers.

CRESPI: My article was cited with reference to this theory that the Greens, who own Hobby Lobby, who have individual religious freedom rights - no one argues with that - wanted to collapse the corporation to sort of bring its behavior under their religious freedom rights.

GOODWYN: This is where it starts to get tricky because if the Supreme Court has confirmed that closely held corporations have religious rights what then do those corporations believe? The answer is nothing, of course, because a corporation isn't raised Catholic or Jewish. It's a legal entity. So in order to exercise its newfound religious freedoms, a corporation must import religious beliefs from a real person or a group of people. The question is, when an owner decides to assert my corporation myself, our religious beliefs are one, has he then torn a hole in his corporate veil? Professor Crespi.

CRESPI: And if the owner himself, as in Hobby Lobby, has asserted, the corporation and I are one, complete congruence, we're not separate - that could be turned around conceivably against them when a creditor of the corporation is trying to sue and the owner now wants to put some distance between himself and the corporation.

GOODWYN: The issue was addressed at an amicus brief filed in the Hobby Lobby case by 44 corporate and securities law professors from around the country. The essence of a corporation is its separateness from its shareholders, the law professors wrote. This Court should reject the values passed through concept. To do otherwise would run contrary to established principles of corporate law. Aaron Katz is a partner at Ropes and Gray which prepared the amicus brief.

AARON KATZ: I don't think what the Supreme Court thinks it has done here is torn the corporate veil.

GOODWYN: Katz believes the Supreme Court intended to recognize that corporations indeed have religious rights without any associated burden or vulnerability. But the Supreme Court also has a long history of not being able to control the consequences of its rulings. Aaron Katz.

KATZ: There's always a risk that when the Supreme Court reaches what it views as a narrow decision, lower courts will see it differently.

GOODWYN: But Mark Rienzi, the lawyer representing Hobby Lobby in the lawsuit, says, the agitation around torn corporate veils is much ado about nothing.

MARK RIENZI: They're just wrong.

GOODWYN: Rienzi says, the Supreme Court's ruling didn't bestow upon corporations any rights or privileges those corporations didn't already enjoy. The decision just confirmed what was already there.

RIENZI: All the court did in Hobby Lobby - they simply said, hey, a business is allowed to make decisions on all sorts of bases, including religion. The business world is not a religion-free zone. So some people can exercise religion there if that's what they choose to do and when they choose to do it, we don't suddenly erase the corporation.

GOODWYN: But other legal scholars believe it's more of an open question. Nadelle Grossman is professor of corporate law at Marquette Law school and an expert on the corporate veil. Grossman says, the Supreme Court's ruling has created a possible legal path for corporate creditors that didn't exist before.

NADELLE GROSSMAN: I do think that this absolutely creates an increased risk for a shareholder who is willing to opt for attributing their personal views and beliefs down to the corporation. Do I think that makes an easier or better argument for creditor purposes? Yes, I do think so.

GOODWYN: Corporate creditors are often highly motivated to recover as much of the debt they're owed as the law will allow in bankruptcy proceedings. Has the Hobby Lobby decision torn the corporate veil? It's only a matter of time before a corporation that's asserted his religious freedoms goes bankrupt, owing lots of money to somebody, then the legal interpretations will be off and running in federal bankruptcy court. Wade Goodwyn, NPR News, Dallas.
BornAgain2

90 years on, push for ERA ratification continues
http://news.msn.com/us/90-years-on-push-for-era-ratification-continues
8/10/14

Drafted by a suffragette in 1923, the Equal Rights Amendment has been stirring up controversy ever since. Many opponents considered it dead when a 10-year ratification push failed in 1982, yet its backers on Capitol Hill, in the Illinois statehouse and elsewhere are making clear this summer that the fight is far from over.

In Washington, congresswomen Jackie Speier, D-Calif., and Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., are prime sponsors of two pieces of legislation aimed at getting the amendment ratified. They recently organized a pro-ERA rally, evoking images of the 1970s, outside the U.S. Supreme Court.

"Recent Supreme Court decisions have sent women's rights back to the Stone Age," said Speier, explaining the renewed interest in the ERA. The amendment would stipulate that equal rights cannot be denied or curtailed on the basis of gender.

Participants in the July 24 rally directed much of their ire at the Supreme Court's recent Hobby Lobby ruling. In a 5-4 decision, with the majority comprised of five male justices, the court allowed some private businesses to opt out of the federal health care law's requirement that contraception coverage be provided to workers at no extra charge.

"They could not have made the Hobby Lobby ruling with an ERA," Maloney said.


Meanwhile, in Illinois, battle lines are being drawn for a likely vote this fall in the state House of Representatives on whether to ratify the ERA. The state Senate approved the ratification resolution on a 39-11 vote in May, and backers hope for a similar outcome in the House after the legislature reconvenes in November.

If the amendment gets the required three-fifths support in the House, Illinois would become the 36th state to ratify the ERA. Thirty-eight states' approval is required to ratify an amendment — but the ERA's possible road to ratification today is complicated by its history.


The Illinois resolution's chief sponsor in the Democrat-controlled House, Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang — who said he was close to securing the 71 votes needed for approval — is motivated in part by Illinois' role in the ERA drama of the 1970s. Back then, the legislature's failure to ratify the amendment was a crucial blow to the national campaign.

"Illinois was the state that killed it 40 years ago," Lang said, calling that "appalling" and noting that Illinois has an equal rights amendment in its state constitution.

One of the leading opponents of the ERA during the 1970s was conservative Illinois lawyer Phyllis Schlafly, who launched a campaign called Stop ERA and is credited with helping mobilize public opinion against the amendment in some of the states that balked at ratifying it.


FYI, Schlafly is a Roman Catholic who is also a Dame of Malta(she also has a sodomite son).

Schlafly, now 89, said activists and politicians trying to revive the ERA were "beating a dead horse.

"They lost and they can't stand it," she said in a telephone interview. "They're doing it to raise money, to give people something to do, to pretend that women are being mistreated by society."

Schlafly's allies in Illinois are gearing up to fight the amendment in the House. The Illinois Family Institute contends the ERA would force women into military combat, invalidate privacy protections for bathrooms and locker rooms, undermine child support judgments and jeopardize social payments to widows.

"There is virtually no limit to the number and kind of lawsuits the ERA will spawn," the institute said.

Lang scoffs at such predictions and says the federal ERA could be a valuable tool in ensuring fair treatment for women in the workplace and in financial transactions.

Written by Alice Paul — a leader of the women's suffrage movement in the U.S. a century ago — the Equal Rights Amendment was introduced annually in Congress from 1923 to 1970, when congressional hearings began in the heyday of the modern feminist movement. In 1972, the ERA won overwhelming approval in both chambers and was forwarded to the 50 state legislatures in search of the needed 38 votes to ratify.

Congress set a deadline of 1979, at which point 35 states had ratified the ERA. The deadline was extended to 1982, but no more states came on board, and the Supreme Court upheld a ruling that the ERA was dead.

The states that did not ratify were Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah and Virginia.

Aside from Illinois, there have been few signs that any of those states are on the verge of ratifying the ERA. In politically divided Virginia, the Senate voted 25-8 vote this year for ratification, but the measure died in a committee in the Republican-controlled House of Delegates.

In Congress, ERA supporters have introduced two measures in pursuit of ratification.

One — known as the "three-state strategy" — is a resolution that would nullify the 1982 deadline so that only three more states would need to ratify the ERA in addition to the 35 that did so in the 1970s.

The other measure would restart the traditional process, requiring passage of the ERA by a two-thirds majority in the U.S. Senate and House, followed by ratification by legislatures in three-quarters of the 50 states.

In the Republican-controlled House, the measures are considered longshots, and neither is expected to come to a vote this year. But supporters said their cause would gain momentum if Illinois ratifies the ERA this year.

Although the ERA does have some Republican supporters, in Congress and in states such as Illinois, it has far less backing overall in GOP ranks than among Democrats. Terry O'Neill, president of the National Organization for Women, suggested that ERA ratification could be among the issues raised as Democrats press their claim that the GOP is waging a "war on women."

"Interest in the ERA is going to continue to bubble up at the grassroots level," O'Neill said. Asked when final ratification might come, she replied, "In years, not decades."

In Oregon, which ratified the federal ERA in 1973, there will be a measure on the November ballot to add an ERA to the state constitution. Its prospects are considered good, yet it is opposed by some women's rights advocates who say Oregon already has strong protections against gender-based discrimination. The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon is concerned that a state amendment might prompt judges to conclude that voters wanted protections against gender bias to be stronger than protections based factors such as race, religion or sexual orientation.

Leanne Littrell DiLorenzo, whose VoteERA.org group has spearheaded the campaign to pass the state amendment, noted that four former Oregon Supreme Court justices had released an open letter disagreeing with the ACLU's interpretation and asserting that the ERA would be a valuable addition to the state constitution.
BornAgain2

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/201...78.html?ncid=txtlnkusaolp00000592
8/14/14
GOP Congressman Forgets That He Supports Birth Control Access At Candidate Debate

Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.) had a bit of a slip-up when he attempted to reiterate his support for birth control access during a debate with his Democratic challenger, former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff. In fact, he completely forgot the words "birth control."

In March, Coffman's campaign said he no longer supported personhood measures, or giving fertilized eggs the same legal rights as people, after Romanoff had demanded that the congressman reject such a proposal. Medical experts say personhood measures could ban some commonly used forms of birth control.

But Coffman's flexible stance on reproductive health issues doesn't mean that he is able to conjure up his position when put on the spot.

When Coffman was asked about the differences he and Romanoff have on reproductive rights issues at a candidate debate Thursday, Coffman blanked.

"I, uh, I believe that, I'm pro-life. I'm proud of that," Coffman said. "I do not support personhood. But I support a women's access, to, to, certainly, this Hobby Lobby decision, to get uh..."

After audience members started murmuring, Coffman smacked his head and said, as the concept came to him, "birth control!"

The video of Coffman's stumble was uploaded by American Bridge, a Democratic-affiliated opposition research group.

Tyler Sandberg, Coffman’s campaign manager, told local reporter Eli Stokols after the debate that the congressman supports birth control access, although he also supports the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in the Hobby Lobby case.

Colorado voters opposed personhood ballot measures in 2008 and 2010. As recently as 2012, Colorado Right to Life hailed Coffman as a representative supportive of personhood legislation.

The race between Coffman and Romanoff in Colorado's 6th District is considered one of the nation's most competitive.
BornAgain2

http://www.salon.com/2014/08/15/n...t_say_they_support_birth_control/
8/15/14
New rule: Dummies who don’t support birth control can’t say they support birth control
Colorado Rep. Mike Coffman, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and most of the GOP are breaking this rule really badly!!


A Republican from Colorado couldn’t remember the words “birth control” when, during a Thursday debate, he was asked a question about reproductive rights. After saying he did not support personhood (which is nice of him, I guess), Rep. Mike Coffman said, “But I support a woman’s access to, um, certainly, to … this Hobby Lobby decision to … um.”

People of Colorado, elect this man! Just kidding, do not elect this man.

A campaign representative clarified that Coffman meant to say that he supports the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, “but also supports maintaining access to birth control,” according to the Denver Post.

I am here today to propose a new rule. The new rule is that dummies who don’t support access to birth control can’t say that they support access to birth control.

Coffman is one such dummy.

First, he wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the reason that your health insurance (if you have it) covers 100 percent of the costs of different methods of contraception, from the pill to the copper IUD. Second, Coffman voted to defund Planned Parenthood, which provides affordable reproductive healthcare — including birth control — to people in Colorado and elsewhere. Third, Coffman, even though he had a really hard time saying it with grown-up words, is down with Hobby Lobby and letting your boss determine how you can use your paycheck and what kind of healthcare you should have access to.

So, no, dummy Mike Coffman, you do not support maintaing access to birth control.
BornAgain2

http://thinkprogress.org/justice/...oklahoma-catholics-and-satanists/
8/23/14
How Satanists Are Testing The Limits Of Religious Freedom In Oklahoma

A legal dispute of biblical proportions flared up in Oklahoma this week, pitting Catholics against Satanists in a case that raises questions about when — or if — the government can uphold the religious claims of one faith group over another.

Earlier this month, a Satanic group in Oklahoma City known as the Dakhma of Angra Mainyu requested the use of the local Civic Center Music Hall on September 21 for the performance of a Satanic ritual known as the “Black Mass.” The announcement incensed local Catholics, primarily because the ritual, which has existed in various forms for several centuries, openly mocks the Roman Catholic Church and includes the intentional desecration of a “host,” or a wafer of bread used during the Catholic ritual of the eucharist. The city manager defended the decision to hold the event by citing the First Amendment, but the Archdiocese of the Oklahoma filed suit against the Satanists on Wednesday, arguing that the group intended to use stolen property during the event.

“If an authorized individual has possession of a consecrated host, it must have been procured, either by that person or by another, by illicit means: by theft, fraud, wrongful taking, or other for of misappropriation,” the lawsuit, obtained by ThinkProgress, claimed. “The Church maintains ownership of all consecrated hosts throughout the world.”

The Archdiocese’s legal argument against the Satanists revolved around a long-established Catholic belief regarding the ritual of communion. According to Catholic theology, a host undergoes a process called transubstantiation after it is consecrated by a priest, or when the bread is said to become the physical body of Jesus Christ. Only authorized individuals are allowed to handle the elements until they are distributed to congregants during communion, at which point, according to the suit, “…a person who throws away a consecrated host or who takes it or retains it for a sacrilegious purpose is automatically excommunicated from the Catholic Church.” Thus, the diocese posited that since the host cannot be removed from a church without the consent of a priest, the bread that the Satanists planned to use in their service must have been stolen, and should be returned to a Catholic church.

“Using a consecrated Host obtained illicitly from a Catholic church and desecrating it in the vilest ways imaginable, the practitioners offer it in sacrifice to Satan,” Reverend Paul S. Coakley, Archbishop of Oklahoma City, said in a statement. “This terrible sacrilege … mocks Our Lord Jesus Christ, whom we Catholics believe is truly present under the form of bread and wine in the Holy Eucharist when it has been consecrated by a validly ordained priest.”

But Adam Daniels, the leader of the Dakhma of Angra Mainyu, told reporters that he didn’t steal the host — it was given to him by the priest.

“One of my priests in a foreign country is also a Catholic priest and he is the one who consecrated it himself and mailed it to me, and I’m not going to reveal his name and I’m not going to reveal what country he’s from,” Daniels told aleteia.org. Daniels later informed VICE News that the priest was from Turkey.

The lawsuit was ultimately resolved this week without having to go to court, as Daniels agreed on Thursday to return the wafers in exchange for the lawsuit being dropped. But the incident is still noteworthy, as it is but the latest in a growing number of “tests” to America’s understanding of religious liberty, and questions linger about what action, if any, police would have taken had the suit been put before a judge.

There are numerous examples throughout American history of legal courts weighing in on disagreements over religious law. In recent years, for example, various state courts have had to settle land disputes between churches attempting to break from their parent faith group and the denominations which, according to church law, technically own their property. States such as Texas have attempted to settle these suits by instituting “neutral” principles that strive to avoid bias towards one religious group. Thus, ideally, judges defer to the “established” beliefs of both faith traditions in a legal fight, respecting both parties unless the actions of one directly challenge the constitutional rights of another. (The U.S. Supreme Court, for its part, has generally refused to hear such cases, deferring to the decisions of the lower courts)

Similarly, the core concern in the Oklahoma case should be whether or not theft occurred, meaning the case came down to — with respect to Catholic beliefs — how the Satanists acquired the host in the first place. Writing for the Washington Post, UCLA School of Law professor Eugene Volokh argues that the case only had two possible legal outcomes:

   1. If the Satanists actually got a host — a piece of bread — that was owned by the Catholic Church, and was passed along by a church employee in violation of the terms on which he received the host, then they would have to give it back. The analogy would be if the San Diego Padres gave their players jerseys but only for purposes of playing in them, and one of the players sold his jersey to a fan; the jersey would still belong to the Padres, and the fan would have to give it back. The Satanists could then still conduct whatever rituals they wanted with their own property, but they’d have to get their own damned host.

   2. But if the Satanists got a renegade priest to say some words over a piece of bread that wasn’t owned by the Catholic Church, even if this action was specifically forbidden by the Church, then the bread wouldn’t be owned by the Church. The analogy would be if a Padres player wore his own shirt during practice and then sold it to a fan — something the Padres-player contract specifically forbade. The player would then be violating his contract, but the Padres wouldn’t get ownership rights to the shirt as a result of the breach of the contract (at least unless the contract was very specific on the player expressly transferring his property rights in all shirts he wears during practice; the Church’s petition doesn’t plead the analog of that, I think). Likewise, the Satanists would be able to lawfully acquire this host, which by hypothesis the Church never owned and never lent out on restricted terms.

But while these principles have been generally true for past cases, the ideal of a neutral legal approach to religious claims was recently called into question by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to grant the Christian craft store giant Hobby Lobby religious exemptions from the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act. Critics of the decision have raised concerns that Hobby Lobby was only given the exemption because of the prominent role Christianity plays in American society, with some wondering if the decision would have been different had the plaintiffs belonged to minority religious group such as Muslims — or, perhaps, Satanists.

Indeed, Satanists have repeatedly tested our nation’s dedication to sweeping religious freedom for all people of faith. In January, the New York-based Satanic Temple submitted an application to erect a seven-foot statue of Satan at Oklahoma’s state Capitol. The plans for the statue, which feature a goat-headed figure with horns and wings, were partially in response to the construction of a six-foot-tall granite memorial to the biblical Ten Commandments on the Capitol grounds in 2012. When asked about the possibility of the Satanist structure, Rep. Don Armes (R-Faxon) openly acknowledged the double-standard of the community, telling the Associate Press, “I think we need to be tolerant of people who think different than us, but this is Oklahoma, and that’s not going to fly here.”

Satanists are even directly challenging the limits of the recent Hobby Lobby decision. In July, the Satanic Temple unveiled a campaign for their members to be exempted from “informed consent” laws that attempt to discourage women from having abortions. Just as the evangelical Christians who own Hobby Lobby argued that certain forms of contraception violated their religious convictions, members of the Satanic Temple argued that, as Satanists, their deeply-held beliefs about “scientifically valid information” should also excuse them from informed consent laws.

To be sure, the actions of Satanists will likely offend believers and non-believers alike, and there a valid question about how to responsibly engage with a group whose rituals intentionally deride people of other faiths. Nevertheless, Satanism is a religious tradition that has existed in various forms for millennia, and it is worth paying attention to how their activism — and, when it comes to the Black Mass, their freedom to perform their own style of worship — will impact our nation’s evolving conception of religious freedom.
BornAgain2

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/DC-D...s-new-way-for-religious-employers
8/22/14
Birth control mandate: HHS offers new way for religious employers

The Obama administration announced an accommodation Friday aimed at ensuring access to free birth control for women who work for religious employers. But religious groups expressed skepticism.


Washington — The Obama administration took steps Friday it said would ensure that women who work for religious employers will have continued access to cost-free birth control coverage, while respecting the views of their employers.

The rules address both religious nonprofits and “closely held” for-profit corporations whose owners have moral objections to some or all forms of birth control.  

The first rule applies to nonprofits and sets up a new pathway for employers to provide notice of their religious objection. Now, effective immediately, eligible organizations may notify the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) directly of their objections, and HHS and the Department of Labor will then notify insurers and third-party administrators to allow the insured to receive separate coverage of contraceptive services. Such services would be provided at no additional cost to enrollees or employers.

Examples of such nonprofits include Catholic and other religious universities, hospitals, and charities.

In the second move, HHS is soliciting comments on how to extend the same accommodation to certain “closely held” for-profit corporations. In June, the US Supreme Court ruled that the administration could not impose the contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act on the owners of closely held companies such as Hobby Lobby, a chain of arts-and-crafts stores. The administration is still working out the definition of “closely held for-profit company.”

“Women across the country deserve access to recommended preventive services that are important to their health, no matter where they work,” HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said, in a statement. “Today’s announcement reinforces our commitment to providing women with access to coverage for contraception, while respecting religious considerations raised by nonprofit organizations and closely held for-profit companies.”

The birth control mandate in Obamacare has spawned dozens of lawsuits, on the grounds that it is an unconstitutional infringement of religious freedom.

Advocates for religious employers said they would review the new rules before issuing an assessment. But the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops expressed “disappointment” in the rules.

“On initial review of the government’s summary of the regulations, we note with disappointment that the regulations would not broaden the ‘religious employer’ exemption to encompass all employers with sincerely held religious objections to the mandate,” said Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., president of the bishops conference, in a statement.

Instead, he said, the regulations would only modify the “accommodation,” under which the mandate still applies.

“Also, by proposing to extend the ‘accommodation’ to the closely held for-profit employers that were wholly exempted by the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Hobby Lobby, the proposed regulations would effectively reduce, rather than expand, the scope of religious freedom,” Archbishop Kurtz said.

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents numerous organizations challenging the birth control mandate, issued a preliminary response.

“This is [the] latest step in the administration’s long retreat on the HHS mandate,” said Lori Windham, senior counsel for the Becket Fund, which is based in Washington. “It is the eighth time in three years the government has retreated from its original, hard-line stance that only ‘houses of worship’ that hire and serve fellow believers deserve religious freedom.”

Two months ago, the Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that closely held for-profit companies like Hobby Lobby cannot be forced to provide their employees with birth control that violates their religious beliefs. Hobby Lobby, a family-owned corporation, objected to two forms of morning-after pill and two forms of intrauterine device, saying they could cause early abortions.

Soon thereafter, the Supreme Court sided with Wheaton College, an evangelical school in Illinois, over its objection to the Obama administration’s accommodation for religious nonprofits that object to the birth control mandate. Such nonprofits have the option of signing a form that authorizes their insurer to provide contraception. The federal government then reimburses the insurer.

Wheaton and other religious groups say that signing the form makes them complicit in the provision of contraception that violates their beliefs.
BornAgain2

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/DC-D...s-new-way-for-religious-employers
8/22/14
Birth control mandate: HHS offers new way for religious employers

The Obama administration announced an accommodation Friday aimed at ensuring access to free birth control for women who work for religious employers. But religious groups expressed skepticism.


Washington — The Obama administration took steps Friday it said would ensure that women who work for religious employers will have continued access to cost-free birth control coverage, while respecting the views of their employers.

The rules address both religious nonprofits and “closely held” for-profit corporations whose owners have moral objections to some or all forms of birth control.  

The first rule applies to nonprofits and sets up a new pathway for employers to provide notice of their religious objection. Now, effective immediately, eligible organizations may notify the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) directly of their objections, and HHS and the Department of Labor will then notify insurers and third-party administrators to allow the insured to receive separate coverage of contraceptive services. Such services would be provided at no additional cost to enrollees or employers.

Examples of such nonprofits include Catholic and other religious universities, hospitals, and charities.

In the second move, HHS is soliciting comments on how to extend the same accommodation to certain “closely held” for-profit corporations. In June, the US Supreme Court ruled that the administration could not impose the contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act on the owners of closely held companies such as Hobby Lobby, a chain of arts-and-crafts stores. The administration is still working out the definition of “closely held for-profit company.”

“Women across the country deserve access to recommended preventive services that are important to their health, no matter where they work,” HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said, in a statement. “Today’s announcement reinforces our commitment to providing women with access to coverage for contraception, while respecting religious considerations raised by nonprofit organizations and closely held for-profit companies.”

The birth control mandate in Obamacare has spawned dozens of lawsuits, on the grounds that it is an unconstitutional infringement of religious freedom.

Advocates for religious employers said they would review the new rules before issuing an assessment. But the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops expressed “disappointment” in the rules.

“On initial review of the government’s summary of the regulations, we note with disappointment that the regulations would not broaden the ‘religious employer’ exemption to encompass all employers with sincerely held religious objections to the mandate,” said Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., president of the bishops conference, in a statement.

Instead, he said, the regulations would only modify the “accommodation,” under which the mandate still applies.

“Also, by proposing to extend the ‘accommodation’ to the closely held for-profit employers that were wholly exempted by the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Hobby Lobby, the proposed regulations would effectively reduce, rather than expand, the scope of religious freedom,” Archbishop Kurtz said.

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents numerous organizations challenging the birth control mandate, issued a preliminary response.

“This is [the] latest step in the administration’s long retreat on the HHS mandate,” said Lori Windham, senior counsel for the Becket Fund, which is based in Washington. “It is the eighth time in three years the government has retreated from its original, hard-line stance that only ‘houses of worship’ that hire and serve fellow believers deserve religious freedom.”

Two months ago, the Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that closely held for-profit companies like Hobby Lobby cannot be forced to provide their employees with birth control that violates their religious beliefs. Hobby Lobby, a family-owned corporation, objected to two forms of morning-after pill and two forms of intrauterine device, saying they could cause early abortions.

Soon thereafter, the Supreme Court sided with Wheaton College, an evangelical school in Illinois, over its objection to the Obama administration’s accommodation for religious nonprofits that object to the birth control mandate. Such nonprofits have the option of signing a form that authorizes their insurer to provide contraception. The federal government then reimburses the insurer.

Wheaton and other religious groups say that signing the form makes them complicit in the provision of contraception that violates their beliefs.
BornAgain2

http://www.reddirtreport.com/prai...es-not-deny-access-contraceptives
Hobby Lobby decision does not deny access to contraceptives
8/29/14

NORMAN, Okla. -- The decision issued in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby did not change the access to free contraceptives; it merely shifted the cost burden. In their majority opinion, the Supreme Court stated that a less restrictive means of providing these services was already in place—an accommodation issued by Health and Human Services (HHS) for non-profit corporations with religious objections. The Court recommended that such a program be implemented for closely held for-profit corporations who object to providing these contraceptives for religious reasons. Instead of a for-profit company’s insurance premiums footing the bill for such access, the cost will be absorbed by the corporation’s insurance company or third party administrator.

Although this recommendation was explicitly issued in the Court’s decision and top legal minds appeared on various news programs stating that this was what would occur, many were still confused, thinking that Hobby Lobby and any other closely held corporations have the ability to deny their employees access to these services. Keri Parks, Director of External Affairs for Planned Parenthood of Central Oklahoma, failing to comprehend the ruling, stated, “We were deeply disappointed and troubled by this ruling because it means that some bosses will be able to interfere with their employees’ access to birth control.” In addition, during the course of the summer, the Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice has issued Facebook posts condemning the Hobby Lobby decision on the basis that it will prevent women from accessing the HHS mandated contraceptives. One of their latest posts was issued on August 16th and stated “Women need access to the FULL range of contraceptive methods – which is why we need to #FixHobbyLobby. SHARE if you agree!”  

For groups that are dedicated to reproductive justice, it seems quite alarming that they seemingly have no grasp of the implications of the decision. The uproar that has accompanied the decision in the Hobby Lobby case has mostly centered around the issue of women’s reproductive rights. People are outraged at the thought that for-profit corporations could deny their employees government mandated access to emergency contraceptives. However, this is not the case. The only issue that changed is what entity will actually be required to pay for the contraception. Employees will still retain cost-free access to the services. Furthermore, as expected, the Obama administration recently released their proposed rules regarding how the employees of such corporations will secure free contraceptives, and what corporations will qualify for the accommodation.

There are a multitude of reasons one could oppose the decision rendered by the Court in the Hobby Lobby case, but if it truly is about women’s access to contraceptives, there is no argument to be made. The Supreme Court acknowledged that the government has a “compelling interest” in ensuring that such services are provided in some manner. However, they ruled that in the case of Hobby Lobby and similar entities, there are less restrictive means to do so, and recommended the accommodation that HHS already offers to non-profit corporations be extended to certain closely held corporations.

There is a likelihood that some corporations will not be satisfied with this accommodation and will pursue further litigation which would seek to relieve themselves from what they would view as culpability in providing such services. Such cases will be much tougher to win. Nevertheless, in the case of the Hobby Lobby decision, all that was changed is what entity will pay for the contraceptives.

The new accommodation will ensure cost-free access to contraceptives regardless of a corporation’s religious objection. For this reason, despite what many individuals and groups have asserted, the Hobby Lobby case is incredibly inconsequential.
BornAgain2

http://www.buzzfeed.com/evanmcsan...iends-with-their-call-for#2fi2oy5
Why Republicans Aren’t Making New Friends With Their Call For Better Contraceptive Access

Over-the-counter contraceptives are actually an idea conservative Republicans and progressive women’s advocates agree on. And yet…

9/9/14

WASHINGTON — These days, prominent Republican Senate candidates and at least one potential 2016 presidential candidate are championing the idea of over-the-counter birth control, setting up the potential for actual bipartisan action on the issue.

One problem: Doctors and pro-choice activists say they don’t actually believe the Republicans are serious.

For years, progressive-leaning (read: pro-choice) women’s rights groups, medical professionals, and drug manufactures have been calling for the contraceptives pill to be sold over the counter at pharmacies, without prescription. Now they have Republican support for the idea. People like Gov. Bobby Jindal, a social conservative and potential Republican presidential candidate, are arguing the policy is sound.

“I would generally follow the lead of associations the like the College of OBGYNs [sic]. We all too often have politicians become experts in things they know nothing about,” Thom Tillis, the Republican nominee for Senate in North Carolina and a proponent of over-the-counter contraceptives told BuzzFeedNews in an interview last week. “I think when you have an organization like the American Colleges of OBGYNs making these kind of recommendations we should look at them.”

But that support is sputtering out badly among medical groups and other longtime proponents of selling contraceptives like Tylenol. This week, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has gotten as far away from Tillis and his fellow Republicans over-the-counter contraceptives advocates as it possibly can.

“It makes me a little suspicious,” Dan Grossman, a doctor and ACOG’s chosen spokesperson when it comes over the counter contraceptives access, told BuzzFeedNews Monday evening. “They really don’t understand this issue in much depth.”

Grossman wasn’t done. “It seems a little disingenuous,” he added.

On Tuesday, ACOG president John Jennings took a softer tone in his own statement but the message was clear: The OBGYNs are not impressed.

“Recent political discussions on the importance of (over-the-counter) access to contraceptives are welcome,” Jennings said, “but ACOG remains firmly in support of comprehensive strategies to increase adoption of more-effective methods and to provide all women with the contraceptives they need at no cost.”

Meanwhile, the pro-choice groups have issued a collective eye-roll at the Republican proposals. After Colorado Republican Senate nominee Cory Gardner offered up his support for over-the-counter contraceptives, Planned Parenthood told the Huffington Post it was a “cynical ploy” designed to “whitewash” his past support for bills pro-choice women’s groups oppose like the so-called “personhood amendment”.

A deep political split over women’s health care access pits Republicans against pro-choice groups and medical professionals — there’s nothing new about that. But taken solely on its own, Republicans really are doing something new with contraceptives this election year and opening the door to some kind of bipartisan compromise on an issue near and dear to women’s rights groups.

For example, by calling for contraceptives without a prescription, Republicans are walking away from social conservatives. Religious Republicans mostly oppose the sale of contraceptives methods like Plan B taken after sex, but they generally don’t oppose the sale of conventional contraceptives (a pill, taken daily). They’re not thrilled at the prospect of people being able to buy it without a prescription, though.

“We would prefer that young women who get talked into doing things by, you know, boyfriends talk to a doctor,” said Connie Mackey, president of the Family Research Council’s PAC. “But we don’t take a position on straight birth control, only on abortifacients.”

Some social conservatives say drugs like Plan B are tantamount to abortion and are abortifacients, a stance not backed up by medical professionals.

Republican women’s groups aren’t jumping on the idea of over-the-counter contraceptives either, but they prefer it to Plan B.

“Any policy on birth-control medication should also take into consideration the important screenings that doctors perform in an office visit for a birth control prescription,” said Penny Nance, president of the conservative Concerned Women for America. “The bigger health issue however, is the fact that Plan B, which is 40 times stronger than birth control, is currently offered over the counter with no age restrictions.”

The thorny political issues surrounding contraceptives — abortion, Obamacare and women, social conservatism, women’s rights — are exactly the issues Republicans are trying to avoid by embracing over-the-counter contraceptives sales. But they’re also the issues keeping pro-choice women’s groups from giving the Republican proposals the time of day — even when they agree.

Over-the-counter contraceptives are also something just about everyone in the pro-choice movement wants. Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice America, Association of Reproductive Health Professionals, ACOG, ACLU, and many, many more are all part of the Oral Contraceptives Over-the-Counter Working Group, an alliance focused on expanding access to contraceptives by eliminating the step of a doctor’s consultation. To the members of the group, an end to prescriptions for some contraceptives is a key in expanding access.

“There is evidence that the current prescription status for hormonal contraception may serve as a barrier to access for many women,” reads the group’s “statement of purpose.” Minority women would be especially likely to take advantage of over-the-counter contraceptives, the group says.

Not only does the working group want over-the-counter contraceptives, it wants changes to Obamacare to get it. Current Obamacare guidance states insurance companies must cover all FDA-approved forms of contraceptives without a co-pay, but if insurers wish, they may require a prescription to get contraceptives. They note that several states allow women to walk into drug stores with Medicaid cards and walk out with the only over-the-counter oral contraceptive available, Plan B, without any money exchanging hands.

“Our ideal: the pill would go over-the-counter and be covered by insurance over the counter,” Grossman said.

The insurance industry isn’t weighing in on whether contraceptives should be available over the counter, but a senior industry official said the FDA allowing the sale of contraceptives over the counter wouldn’t make much difference for coverage.

“Our sense is this wouldn’t have much impact on insurance at all. Even if it’s over-the-counter, health plans would still be required to cover it at no cost,” the official said. “As long as they don’t repeal the part of the law that says insurance must cover it, it would still be free to those with insurance.”

And here’s where the Republicans start losing their chance to make new friends in the contraceptives access advocacy community with their over the counter contraceptives message.

The ideal world of over-the-counter contraceptives pills for current Republican advocates is a world where the Affordable Care Act doesn’t exist, meaning it’s a world where insurance companies are no longer required to offer contraceptives with no co-pay whatsoever. Jindal, the Louisiana governor who is the most prominent Republican proponent of contraceptives over the counter, would like to lift requirements like that, a scenario that likely involves insurance companies charging what they want for contraceptives coverage.

“Insurers would probably continue to cover it because the market would demand it,” said a senior Jindal aide. But the goal of the policy change is to “get the federal government out of health care choices,” the aide said. In addition, Jindal wants to see drugs like Plan B banned. Jindal also wants an 18-year-old age limit on contraceptives sales, which most of the pro-choice groups oppose.

“We are very clear to use the word contraception,” said the aide. “The difference is between contraception and birth control after conception.”
BornAgain2

http://news.yahoo.com/russell-pea...ol-senator-resigns-152716895.html

Vice chairman of Arizona Republican Party resigns over birth control comments
'You put me in charge of Medicaid, the first thing I’d do is get Norplant, birth-control implants,' former Arizona state Sen. Russell Pearce said

9/16/14

Former Arizona Sen. Russell Pearce has resigned as vice chairman of the state's Republican Party over controversial comments he made about birth control.

“You put me in charge of Medicaid, the first thing I’d do is get Norplant, birth-control implants, or tubal ligations," Pearce said on his talk radio show. "Then we’ll test recipients for drugs and alcohol, and if you want to [reproduce] or use drugs or alcohol, then get a job.”

Democrats and Republicans alike were outraged by the comment.

“For the first vice chair of the Arizona Republican Party to advocate for forced sterilization is unacceptable,” DJ Quinlan, executive director of the Arizona Democratic Party, said in a statement Saturday.

"Russell Pearce’s ignorant, hateful comments are insulting to women everywhere. He needs to resign or be removed from office immediately," tweeted Martha McSally, a Republican nominee in Arizona's 2nd Congressional District.

In a statement announcing his resignation, Pearce said the comments actually weren't his, but that he failed to correctly attribute them and doesn't want to become a distraction ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.

“Recently on my radio show there was a discussion about the abuses to our welfare system," Pearce said. "I shared comments written by someone else and failed to attribute them to the author. This was a mistake. This mistake has been taken by the media and the left and used to hurt our Republican candidates. I do not want the progressive left and the media to try and take a misstatement from my show and use it to attack our candidates. I care about the Republican Party and its conservative platform too much to let them do that."

Pearce added: "I will never back down from standing up for what I believe in, and I will continue to fight for the principles that our founding generation risked their lives for. But I have no intention of being used as a distraction by the Democrats.”

It's not the first time Pearce has stirred up controversy.

In the wake of the 2012 Aurora, Colo., theater massacre, Pearce criticized moviegoers for their failure to stop James Holmes, the suspected shooter in the mass killing.

"Had someone been prepared and armed they could have stopped this 'bad' man from most of this tragedy," Pearce wrote in a Facebook post. "He was two and three feet away from folks, I understand he had to stop and reload. Where were the men of flight 93???? Someone should have stopped this man. Someone could have stopped this man."

Twelve people were killed and 58 others wounded at the midnight screening of "Dark Knight Rises."

"Lives were lost because of a bad man," Pearce continued, "not because he had a weapon, but because no one was prepared to stop it. Had they been prepared to save their lives or lives of others, lives would have been saved. All that was needed is one [courageous]/brave man prepared mentally or otherwise to stop this. [I]t could have been done. When seconds count, police are only minutes away."
BornAgain2

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/r...rethink-on-contraception-ban.html

Pope Francis adviser hints at rethink on contraception ban
Cardinal Walter Kasper, a close influence on Pope Francis, says it is up to parents to decide how many children to have ahead of global gathering of Roman Catholic bishops to discuss the family

By John Bingham, Religious Affairs Editor

1:50PM BST 19 Sep 2014

A leading reformist Cardinal close to Pope Francis has hinted at the possibility of a reinterpretation of the Roman Catholic Church’s blanket ban on artificial contraception.

Cardinal Walter Kasper said it was “the responsibility of the parents” to decide how many children they should have.

He also said that so-called natural family planning, which is promoted by the Church as an alternative to contraception, also has an “artificial” element.

His comments in an interview with The Tablet, the Catholic weekly, are likely to reopen debate about one of the most contentious areas of Catholic teaching just weeks before a special global gathering of bishops in Rome to discuss the Church’s position on family matters.

Cardinal Kasper is the leading proponent of moves to relax the ban on remarried divorcees receiving Holy Communion, arguing for a greater emphasis on “mercy” for individuals without abandoning the Church’s official teaching that marriage is for life.

Pope Francis has openly praised a book the German prelate wrote on the subject and has pointedly made mercy the central theme of many of his public pronouncements in recent weeks.

Cardinal Kasper set out his ideas in a speech to fellow cardinals earlier this year widely believed to have been delivered with the blessing of Pope Francis.

But earlier this week a powerful group of conservative cardinals hit back with a book of their own, timed to coincide with the run-up to Pope’s Francis’s extraordinary synod on the family, warning against any relaxation of the Church’s traditional position.

In his Tablet interview, Cardinal Kasper restated his case for mercy on the question of divorce but also risked further angering some sections of the church by suggesting a possible rethink on the question of artificial contraception.

He said he had “no solution” to the gulf between official Church teaching on artificial contraception, set out in the 1968 papal encyclical Humanae Vitae and the practice of millions of ordinary Catholics.

The Cardinal, who is attending the special synod at the invitation of the Pope, said he hoped the issue would be discussed.

“To promote a sense that to have children is a good thing, that is the primary thing,” he said.

“Then how to do it and how not to do it, that is a secondary question.


“Of course the parents have to decide how many children are possible.

“This cannot be decided by the Church or a bishop, this is the responsibility of the parents.”

Leading exponents of natural family planning – which relies on calculating when women are fertile – will be present at the gathering.

But the Cardinal argued that natural methods also have an “artificial aspect”.
BornAgain2

Surprise!

http://m.cnsnews.com/news/article...s-bill-funding-planned-parenthood
Boehner and Pelosi Unite to Pass Bill Funding Planned Parenthood, Obamacare, Syrian Revolutionaries
9/17/14

The CR also put no restriction on funding any provision of Obamacare or any regulation issued under Obamacare. That includes the preventive services regulation that requires individuals and families to purchase health insurance plans that cover contraceptives, sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs even if doing so violates their religious faith.
BornAgain2

This is all by design...ultimately to put these draconian birth control pills over the counter.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/201...74.html?ncid=txtlnkusaolp00000592
9/24/14
CVS Caught Illegally Charging Women For Birth Control

CVS has been illegally charging women for birth control, violating an Obamacare provision that forces insurers to cover generic contraceptives at no cost to women.

Since learning of a price-coding error that erroneously charged approximately 11,000 women unlawful copays, CVS has moved to fix the problem and refund affected customers.

The issue was brought to public light by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) after one of her staffers was charged a $20 copay when trying to buy generic birth control at a CVS in Washington, D.C. Such a copay is illegal under the Affordable Care Act. Speier wrote a letter to Larry Merlo, the CEO of CVS, earlier this month.

"Although my staff member's issue was eventually resolved a week and numerous phone calls and pharmacy visits later, I am concerned that most women who are likely not familiar with their rights under the ACA may go without this essential family planning service that is supposed to be guaranteed to them under law," Speier wrote in a letter dated September 9.

On September 19, Sol J. Ross, CVS's head of federal affairs, responded to Speier, saying that the company was handling the issue.

"Refund checks will be [sent] to affected plan members by September 26," Ross wrote. "In fact, refund checks have already started to go out and all should be received by October 1."

CVS told The Huffington Post Wednesday that it had identified the glitch before receiving Speier's letter.

"We are committed to assuring that our customers receive the pharmacy benefits that are available to them and apologize for any inconvenience this issue may have caused," a CVS spokesperson wrote in an email.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, millions of women no longer have to pay for preventative health services and screenings, like an annual check-up, pap-smears and generic birth control. According to a recent study from the Guttmacher Institute, the percentage of privately insured women who no longer have to pay out-of-pocket costs for birth control is growing quickly.

In fall 2012, before Obamacare went into effect, only 15 percent of insured women got free birth control pills. Today, that number is nearly 70 percent. The reason not all women today have health insurance that includes no-cost birth control is that some people are still covered by plans that are temporarily allowed to disregard this provision and other Obamacare rules. Eventually, virtually all health insurance will include no-cost contraceptives.
BornAgain2

http://townhall.com/columnists/su...he-gender-gap-evaporates-n1896725

War in the Gender Gap Evaporates
Suzanne Fields | Sep 26, 2014

The phony "war against women" has taken a strange and unexpected turn. Republican candidates are promoting expanded access to birth control, with contraceptives available over the counter. Democrats in varying shades of blue dismiss something they've always wanted as mere Republican politics. You would think Democrats would be grateful for enhanced access for women, a dream come true.

This is the catch 22 of the 2014 campaign. Democrats and Planned Parenthood are obviously afraid that if Republicans get credit for this pip of an idea, they'll fall into the diminishing gender gap and never be heard again. The latest polls show Democrats hold only a 1-point lead among women on the generic congressional ballot.

It's desperation politics to scorn a proposal to give women greater flexibility to prevent an unwanted pregnancy, eliminate a costly visit to a doctor and reduce abortions. Over-the-counter sales would make the pill less expensive for the growing number of uninsured women under Obamacare, as well as for women who work for companies with insurance but whose employers hold religious beliefs that prevents them from paying for birth control. The proposal is endorsed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Academy of Family Physicians. This sounds to me like a win-win proposition.

The birth control pill is the most widely used method of contraception for American women, and if it were available without a prescription, sales volume would likely reduce the cost, now estimated to be about $50 a month, or less than $2 a day. Over-the-counter sales would eliminate expensive doctor's visits and time-consuming clinic visits. The Alan Guttmacher Institute finds that more than 17 percent of American women in their childbearing years between 15 and 44 rely on the pill.

Eliminating it as a prescription drug couldn't happen overnight. Only a bipartisan push from Congress would persuade the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to change its regulation of the pill, but an unlikely coalition of conservatives and liberals could make it happen quickly. It's natural for libertarian support, and the conservative Family Research Council has taken no position against contraception unrelated to abortion.

The great obstacle, of course, is that support for the idea undercuts the Democrats' "war on women" and reduces partisan noise. "What's happened with the over-the-counter birth control issue," Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway tells National Public Radio, "is that the Democrats didn't see it coming. They think they've got a monopoly on talking to women from the waist down."

A dismissive Planned Parenthood television advertisement says candidates who support the change "will turn the pill into yet another bill." Well, that's what politics is all about. Lobbying pressure and advocacy help, too. A doctor's prescription is especially burdensome for poor minority women, and it's difficult to find a pro-choice voter who opposes over-the-counter contraceptives.

None of the Republican candidates in this election cycle so far resemble any of the chest-thumping red-hots of the last cycle. Rep. Cory Gardner, locked in a tight race against Democratic Sen. Mark Udall in Colorado, is described as a "new kind of Republican." In a television ad, Mr. Booker, who supports the free-the-pill initiative, paints Sen. Udall as the man who would "keep government bureaucrats between you and your health care plan." Two driving issues fuse neatly.

Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana is a cheerleader for over-the-counter sales of the pill. He says Democrats have "demagogued" the contraceptives issue. "Contraception is a personal matter," he writes in The Wall Street Journal. "The government shouldn't be in the business of banning it or requiring a woman's employer to keep tabs on her use of it."

The Republican "war on women" has always been an absurd campaign slogan, reeking of mendacity and bad faith. Women are not a monolithic mass in their preferences and attitudes, and their representatives in Congress know it. Politicians are always looking for an issue that works in appealing to a constituency, and contraceptives could be the long-sought unifying force of both liberals and conservatives. It would give women the ability to prevent unwanted pregnancies and the power to keep their most private decisions private -- no doctor, no government intrusion. If both Democrats and Republicans support this sensible idea, this "war on women" is over.

Democrats attack at their peril the messenger who delivers a message women are eager to hear. Daniel Payne, a self-described "health-nut anti-synthetic Catholic natural foodie freak," writes in the Federalist that in spite of his religious beliefs and personal preferences, he thinks "there's no justifiable reason for me or for anyone else to impede a woman's access to something like the pill." That sums it up for most of the rest of us, too.

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1Kings 13:15  Then he said unto him, Come home with me, and eat bread.
1Ki 13:16  And he said, I may not return with thee, nor go in with thee: neither will I eat bread nor drink water with thee in this place:
1Ki 13:17  For it was said to me by the word of the LORD, Thou shalt eat no bread nor drink water there, nor turn again to go by the way that thou camest.
1Ki 13:18  He said unto him, I am a prophet also as thou art; and an angel spake unto me by the word of the LORD, saying, Bring him back with thee into thine house, that he may eat bread and drink water. But he lied unto him.
1Ki 13:19  So he went back with him, and did eat bread in his house, and drank water.
1Ki 13:20  And it came to pass, as they sat at the table, that the word of the LORD came unto the prophet that brought him back:
1Ki 13:21  And he cried unto the man of God that came from Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast disobeyed the mouth of the LORD, and hast not kept the commandment which the LORD thy God commanded thee,
1Ki 13:22  But camest back, and hast eaten bread and drunk water in the place, of the which the LORD did say to thee, Eat no bread, and drink no water; thy carcase shall not come unto the sepulchre of thy fathers.

1Ki 13:23  And it came to pass, after he had eaten bread, and after he had drunk, that he saddled for him the ass, to wit, for the prophet whom he had brought back.
1Ki 13:24  And when he was gone, a lion met him by the way, and slew him: and his carcase was cast in the way, and the ass stood by it, the lion also stood by the carcase.
1Ki 13:25  And, behold, men passed by, and saw the carcase cast in the way, and the lion standing by the carcase: and they came and told it in the city where the old prophet dwelt.
BornAgain2

http://www.sfgate.com/health/arti...ontraceptive-coverage-5783383.php
California to expand contraceptive coverage, eliminate co-pays
By Bob Egelko
Updated 7:41 pm, Friday, September 26, 2014

Health insurance policies in California will have to cover all federally approved contraceptives for women by 2016 without charging co-payments under legislation signed this week by Gov. Jerry Brown, countering trends in other states and the U.S. Supreme Court.

The bill, SB1053 by Sen. Holly Mitchell, D-Los Angeles, expands state laws that required coverage for most birth-control drugs and devices approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The new law mandates coverage for all FDA-approved contraception, prohibits co-payments and includes managed-care Medi-Cal plans, which are not expressly covered by current laws.

“No woman in California will any longer face the prospect of a health plan second-guessing or overruling the medical or family planning needs she and her health care adviser deem best for her,” Mitchell said in a statement Thursday after Brown signed the bill.

She said she hoped the law would be a model for other states looking to preserve contraceptive coverage in the wake of the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling in June that allowed private employers to deny coverage to female employees based on the employer’s religious objections to birth control.

The ruling was based on federal law, not the Constitution, and does not apply to states like California whose laws require insurance coverage for contraception. Current state laws and SB1053 allow churches and other religious institutions to withhold contraceptive coverage, but the exemption does not apply to other employers.

A number of states have responded to the ruling by seeking to limit access to contraceptives, while also enacting restrictions on abortion and abortion providers. California has some of the nation’s strongest abortion-rights laws.
[/red]

[color=blue]**Now where have we seen this script before?


Mitchell’s measure passed both houses on party-line votes. It was supported by reproductive-rights groups, labor unions and some physicians’ groups, but opposed by the insurance industry, which said it would increase costs and premiums. The California Catholic Conference also opposed the bill.

Brown also signed legislation Thursday that will prohibit state prisons from sterilizing inmates for the purpose of birth control. SB1135 by Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, followed disclosures by the Center for Investigative Reporting that doctors in the prisons had sterilized 148 women between 2006 and 2010 without the required state approval, and in some cases without the women’s consent.
BornAgain2

http://www.cnsnews.com/news/artic...-new-cultural-revolution-gone-mad
Tony Perkins: America Faces ‘New Cultural Revolution--Gone Mad’
January 20, 2015 - 11:40 AM

CNSNews.com) -- Family Research Council President Tony Perkins delivered a “State of the Family Address” last night in which he cited multiple government attacks on religious freedom and said America faces a "new cultural revolution--gone mad."

“The threats America faces are not potential--they are clear, present and dangerous,” said Perkins in an address broadcast online and on American Family Radio. “Ironically, they come most sharply today not from the radical economic doctrines of Karl Marx, nor from the lights of what Winston Churchill called 'perverted science,' but from the darkness of unrestricted sexual license—a new Cultural Revolution—gone mad."

In the audience, were four American families who have seen their religious liberty attacked in recent times.

Among them were the Hahn family, who operate Conestoga Wood Specialties, a cabinet-making business in Pennsylvania. When the federal government ordered the Hahns, under an Obamacare regulation, to provide coverage for abortion-inducing drugs and devices in their employee health-insurance plan--or pay $95,000 per day in fines--they sued the administration. When the Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that the administration could not enforce the same regulation against Hobby Lobby, a lower court issued an injunction preventing the administration from enforcing it against the Hahns.

Barth Bracy of Connecticut and his family also attended the "State of the Family Address." Bracy, who is the head of Rhode Island Right to Life, lives in next-door Connecticut. When Connecticut’s new Obamacare exchange offered no health insurance plan that did not cover elective abortions, he sued. “Thankfully, in its second year, Connecticut offered a prolife plan,” Perkins said in his address. “The Bracys have withdrawn their suit, but they know the battle is far from over.

Aaron and Melissa Klein of Oregon also attended the event. They own the “Sweet Cakes by Melissa’ bakery.

“When the Kleins politely declined to make a wedding cake for two women seeking to get married under a federal court ruling that struck down Oregon’s pro-marriage referendum, the women filed a complaint under Oregon labor law,” said Perkins. “The Oregon Bureau of Labor fined the Kleins $150,000, a sum that will bankrupt them and their five small children. In the state of Oregon’s view, the Kleins need to be ‘rehabilitated’ from their religious views on the nature of marriage. Needless to say, government re-education regimes are not the American way.”

Also in attendance was Victoria Miller, who owns W.W. Bridal Boutique in Bloomsburg, Pa. She “faced media scorn when she declined to provide wedding dresses for a same-sex ceremony,” Perkins said. “I am pleased to report that last month the Bloomsburg town council decided against drafting an ordinance that would have compelled businesses like Victoria’s to service an event it cannot morally support.”

Perkins argued that respect for religious freedom is central to, and essential for the preservation of, American freedom.

“A government able to bankrupt people for standing by their beliefs, on marriage or any other matter of conscience, is a government of unbridled power and a threat to everyone’s freedom,” he said.

Perkins called on Americans to rally around a number of causes the Family Research Council believes will start moving the country back in the right direction. These included:

--Paying more attention to religious freedom in U.S. foreign policy. “We propose that the Obama Administration elevates the importance of religious freedom in foreign affairs, as a basic liberty essential to peace as well as justice, with stronger enforcement of the International Religious Freedom Act through our aid programs, and for sanctions against governments hostile to religious freedom,” said Perkins.

--Enacting a federal law that would ban abortion in the United States after the 20th week of pregnancy. “The United States is one of only four nations on the planet to allow elective abortion throughout the entire term of pregnancy, including when at five months the unborn child can feel pain,” said Perkins.

--Enacting a federal law to prevent discrimination against people who believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. “The Marriage and Religious Freedom Act prevents the federal government from doing to the Kleins what Oregon has done, or what a town council in Pennsylvania almost did to the Millers,” said Perkins.

--Enacting additional laws to prevent sex trafficking of women. “Abortion on demand and human trafficking compose a common league of evil,” said Perkins. “Ending that league is the abolitionist cause of our time.”

Near the end of his speech, Perkins made a plea for Christians to work for racial reconciliation in America.

**"racial reconciliation? Really? Like Ferguson? NOW we know who the REAL minions are behind this!

He noted the presence in the audience of Bishop Harry R. Jackson, Jr., who is senior pastor of the Hope Christian Church in Washington, D.C., and presiding bishop of the International Communion of Evangelical Churches. In 2008, Perkins and Bishop Jackson coauthored “Personal Faith, Public Policy.”

“When we wrote our book 'Personal Faith, Public Policy' we desired to model racial reconciliation as we saw racial division within the body of Christ as a scandal—a stumbling block to secularists who long saw that the nation’s most religious regions suffered from some of its worst racial prejudice,” Perkins said.

“Over the past 50 years much progress has been made in building new bonds of solidarity in the church and in society, but looking around us today can we truly say that America has transcended the racial divide?” said Perksins. “As we wrote in our book, we are convinced that only the church can deliver our nation from the fires and fetters of racial hatred. On this question, we come not to demand more of government, but more of ourselves."

--------------------------------------------------------------------

Don't be hoodwinked by this "religious freedom" nonsense - for example, look how Islam has infiltrated this country, big time. So are they saying the Islamapocalypse that's hit this country is OK, b/c Muslims are entitled to their "religious freedom"?

Did Jesus Christ die on the cross for our "religious freedom"?

Mark 16:15  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
Mar 16:16  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
BornAgain2

http://news.yahoo.com/court-nixes...-mandate-challenge-212411536.html
2/12/15
Court nixes faith-based birth control mandate challenge

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A federal appeals court has reversed lower-court victories by two western Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses and a private Christian college that challenged birth control coverage mandates as part of federal health care reforms.

The 3-0 ruling Wednesday by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel found that the reforms place "no substantial burden" on the religious groups and therefore don't violate their First Amendment right to religious expression.

All three organizations are mulling whether to appeal to the entire 3rd Circuit Court or the U.S. Supreme Court.

"Such a ruling should cause deep concern for anyone who cares about any First Amendment rights, especially the right to teach and practice a religious faith," Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik said in a statement. "This decision says that the church is no longer free to practice what we preach."

At issue is an "accommodation" written into the Affordable Care Act that says religious organizations can opt out of directly providing and paying to cover medical services such groups would consider morally objectionable. In this case, that refers to all contraceptive and abortion services for the Catholic plaintiffs, and contraceptive services like the "week-after" pill and other medical coverage that Geneva College contends violate its anti-abortion teachings. The school in Beaver Falls is affiliated with the Reformed Presbyterian Church.

Justice Department lawyers have argued the accommodation solves the problem because it allows religious groups to opt out of directly providing such coverage. But the plaintiffs contend that merely filing the one-page form, which puts a religious group's objections on record with the government, violates their rights because it still "facilitates" or "triggers" a process that then enables third-party insurers to provide the kind of coverage to which they object.

The appellate opinion written by Judge Marjorie O. Rendell rejects that reasoning.

"Federal law, rather than any involvement by the appellees in filling out or submitting the self-certification form, creates the obligation" for third parties to offer the objected-to coverage, Rendell wrote.

The opinion says the form merely provides a way for the religious groups to avoid being penalized for opting not to directly provide the benefits. But the groups have argued the form does more than that if the third-party providers can't provide the services before the form is filed. That question is expected to be raised in future appeals.

The Catholic plaintiffs raise a second issue. Churches themselves, and their employees, are automatically exempt from the health care mandates. But affiliated organizations — like the college — and charities are not, so the dioceses contend the law essentially divides the church against itself.

The 3rd Circuit, based in Philadelphia, is the fourth federal appeals court to rule that the accommodation is not a burden on the nonprofits' exercise of religion. The other courts that have ruled are based in Chicago, Cincinnati and Washington, D.C. At least four other appellate courts are considering the same issue, and experts on both sides expect the Supreme Court eventually will settle the matter.

The justices could act on a request by the University of Notre Dame as soon as Feb. 23. The earliest the issue could be argued at the Supreme Court is October, and a decision would not be expected until 2016.
BornAgain2

http://www.theguardian.com/commen...op-using-religion-to-discriminate
2/25/15
More courts are telling businesses: stop using religion to discriminate
Louise Melling
Ever since Hobby Lobby, a slew of court rulings are telling companies that their religious rights have limits


The US supreme court ruled last summer that the national retail chain Hobby Lobby has the right to impose the religious beliefs of its owners on the company’s employees by refusing to cover contraception, as required by federal law. The court’s ruling rested on the premise that complying with the law violated the business’ religious freedom.

Since then though, in other contexts, lower courts and commissions have been stepping up and ruling against companies that try to use the freedom of religion argument as a pretext for discrimination against LGBT people and women.

Religious freedom is integral to this country. It must - and will – be protected. But what is being increasingly recognized is that religious freedom gives us all a right to our beliefs. This right, though, like all our rights, has limits. Those limits come into play when acting on our beliefs harms others.

Religious liberty can’t be used by businesses to turn away lesbian and gay couples seeking to celebrate a relationship, or by religiously associated nonprofits who treat women employees like second-class citizens by denying contraceptive coverage. The promise of equality is not real or robust if it has exceptions.


Just last week, a court in Washington found a florist in violation of that state’s anti- discrimination law after the store refused to provide flowers for a gay couple’s wedding. The owner of the store said serving the couple would have violated her faith by signaling approval for the wedding. The court said she’s welcome to have her beliefs. But those beliefs don’t give her the right to turn people away simply because they’re gay. The court also concluded that referring the couple to a non-discriminating business doesn’t cut it. Such a result, would “defeat the purpose of combating discrimination” and “allow discrimination in public accommodations based on all protected classes, including race”, according to the court.

The Washington court is not alone. In the recent wave of cases concerning businesses serving the public, every court and commission that has considered a claim that religious belief justifies discrimination has said, “No license to discriminate issued here.”

When a photography studio argued a right to refuse to photograph a commitment ceremony, the state supreme court in New Mexico said no. When a wedding venue argued for a right to turn away a lesbian couple, the New York State Division of Human Rights said no. When a cake shop argued a right to refuse service to a gay couple seeking a wedding cake, the Colorado Civil Rights Commission said no. And an administrative law judge in Oregon said no to a bakery that refused to provide a same-sex couple a cake for their wedding.

The trend, however, isn’t limited to the LGBT context. The courts are denying a new wave of challenges to the rules providing for contraceptive coverage. Right now, in essence, if those institutions object to providing contraception for religious reasons, they can notify their insurer or the federal Department of Human Services of their objection, and the insurer will provide and administer coverage. Religiously affiliated nonprofits are objecting even to this requirement, saying it makes them complicit in sin. To date, four courts of appeals have considered challenges to this rule; every one of those courts has rejected the claim.[/b]

The courts have rejected this effort to stretch the Hobby Lobby ruling one step further. At least one court has called it like it is, noting that what the institution is objecting to is not filling out paperwork. The real objection is women getting the contraceptive care they need.

[b]The supreme court’s Hobby Lobby ruling was without precedent. For now at least, the courts and other governmental bodies aren’t accepting the invitations, coming fast and furious, to sanction the next wave of discrimination.


And they can’t, not if they want to be true to equality and religious freedom. When there were calls in congress and courts across the country to let businesses turn away African Americans because of religious beliefs, the answer was a resounding “no.” The answer should be the same today.

Businesses and nonprofits have twisted the idea of religious freedom, arguing that it provides the right to discriminate. They’d like the right to put up a big sign that says, “We don’t serve your kind here,” and claim that’s okay simply because of their religious beliefs.

The growing response from courthouses and government bodies has been a loud and clear, “No.” This shift promises that religious freedom will be protected – and the promise of equality will too.
BornAgain2

And the soap opera continues to drag on...

http://news.yahoo.com/supreme-cou...traception-mandate-134041881.html
3/9/15
Supreme Court sends Notre Dame contraception mandate challenge to lower court

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday threw out an appeals court decision that went against the University of Notre Dame over its religious objections to the Obamacare health law’s contraception requirement.

The justices asked the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reconsider its decision in favor of the Obama administration in light of the June 2014 Supreme Court ruling that allowed closely held corporations to seek exemptions from the provision.

The court’s action means the February 2014 appeals court ruling that denied the South Bend, Indiana-based Roman Catholic university an injunction against the requirement has been wiped out.

The 2010 Affordable Care Act, known widely as Obamacare, requires employers to provide health insurance policies that cover preventive services for women including access to contraception and sterilization.

In the 2014 ruling, the high court said that Hobby Lobby Stores Ltd could, on religious grounds, seek exemptions from the contraception provision.

Days later, in a case similar to the Notre Dame dispute, the Supreme Court allowed a college in Illinois a temporary exemption while litigation continues.

Catholic groups say they should not have to pay for or facilitate access to contraception or abortion because of religious objections.

But courts that have considered the issue since then have found that a compromise aimed at nonprofits with religious affiliations, issued in 2013 and amended in August 2014, did not impose a substantial burden on the plaintiffs' religious beliefs. Religious rights are protected under a law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

The Notre Dame case was the only appeals court decision on that issue that pre-dated the Hobby Lobby ruling.

The compromise allows the groups to certify they are opting out, which then forces insurers to pick up the tab.

Notre Dame says the certification process still essentially forces the groups to authorize the coverage for its employees, even if they are not technically paying for it. Religious institutions are exempt from the contraception coverage requirement.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Born-again believers, please don't be fooled by this, b/c...

1) Look who is fighting this - the ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH - as tempting as it is, PLEASE don't wave your pom-poms in victory b/c doing so WILL alight yourself with the RCC!

And besides - our conversation and blessed hope is with our LORD Jesus Christ with ETERNAL LIFE IN HEAVEN!

2) Look at the last bolded above - this is yet another back-door way for insurance premiums to GO UP! This is all by design with Obamacare to skyrocket insurance premiums, and ultimately get everyone to beg for this one-payer system! Problem. Reaction. Solution.
BornAgain2

Was just reading about it in another article - apparently, they didn't overturn it(completely, that is) - they just merely punted it back to a lower federal court(to reconsider it). The title of this article is rather misleading.

Like said above - this soap opera continues...

http://news.yahoo.com/supreme-cou...lege-contraception-192246159.html
Supreme Court rules against gov't in Catholic college contraception case
3/9/15

Washington (AFP) - The United States Supreme Court on Monday overturned a court judgment in favor of the Obama administration which barred a Catholic university from refusing to pay for contraception for employees on religious grounds.

The Supreme Court had already ruled in favor last year of a Christian-owned company, Hobby Lobby, which had sought to avoid paying for worker healthcare plans which included contraception.

Monday's ruling overturned a judgment against the University of Notre Dame, a prominent Catholic college, which had also refused to fund contraception, a mandatory provision under President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul.

The judgment was the only one of its kind in the United States forcing a religious organization to support certain kinds of contraceptives, such as the morning after pill.

But in a brief decision issued Monday, the highest US court overturned the earlier ruling, sending the case back to a federal court of appeal and ordering it to reconsider in light of the June 2014 decision.

Monday's ruling reflected the position of the Supreme Court last year, when the nine justices, five of whom are conservative, ruled that freedom of religion ought to apply to businesses as well as individuals, meaning an employer should not be compelled to pay for contraception if it violated his or her religious beliefes.

"This is a major blow to the federal government's contraception mandate. For the past year, the Notre Dame decision has been the centerpiece of the government's effort to force religious ministries to violate their beliefs or pay fines to the IRS," said Mark Rienzi, senior counsel of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which filed an amicus brief in the case.

"As with the Supreme Court's decisions in Little Sisters of the Poor and Hobby Lobby, this is a strong signal that the Supreme Court will ultimately reject the government's narrow view of religious liberty.

Monday's ruling is the latest instance of the Supreme Court making a ruling related to Obama's healthcare reforms.

Last week the justices debated a case which asks whether some seven million people who signed up for Obamacare via the government's website are actually entitled to tax subsidies that make the coverage affordable. Unlike the contraception case, their decision could strike down the law.

A decision is expected before the end of June.

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Looks like a whole new can of worms is opening up...

Let's say a Muslim business denies services to a sodomite couple - does anyone here honestly believe the courts will side with the sodomites, like they did in their cases against Christian business owners who denied them services?

Let's say Hindu business owners fire their Christian employees based on whatever - does anyone here honestly believe the courts will side with the Christian employees?

Does everyone here see where this is going?
BornAgain2

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_sl...macare_contraceptive_mandate.html
6/22/15
Federal Court Vehemently Rejects Latest Challenge to the Obamacare Contraceptive Mandate

On Monday, the Fifth Circuit—one of the most conservative appeals courts in the country—rejected a challenge to the Affordable Care Act's contraceptive mandate in an opinion written by Judge Jerry E. Smith—one of the most conservative federal judges on the bench. The challenge, brought by nonprofit religious groups, claimed that the mandate violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) by forcing these groups to sign a form that would eventually allow their employees to access contraception. In a concise, emphatic opinion, the court ruled that the mandate complies with RFRA.

Although the challenge relies on the same law used in the Hobby Lobby case, it differs in crucial ways. In Hobby Lobby, for-profit corporations objected to the mandate's requirement that they provide employees with insurance coverage of contraception. The court held that this requirement substantially burdened Hobby Lobby's exercise of religion, in violation of RFRA. Here, however, religious nonprofits are not being required to provide contraceptive coverage to their employers. Rather, they need only submit a form or notification announcing that they refuse, based on their religious beliefs, to provide such coverage. Once they have, their insurer will be directed to provide separate payments to women who desire contraception.

The religious groups currently suing the government claim that the act of submitting this form constitutes a substantial burden on their religious exericse, in violation of RFRA. Signing the form, they argue, will set into motion a chain of events that ultimately allows their employees to gain access to contraception. The Third, Sixth, Seventh, and D.C. Circuits have already rejected this argument; the Fifth Circuit now joins their ranks. At the heart of the court's opinion is this remarkable passage:

Although the plaintiffs have identified several acts that offend their religious beliefs, the acts they are required to perform do not include providing or facilitating access to contraceptives. Instead, the acts that violate their faith are those of third parties. Because RFRA confers no right to challenge the independent conduct of third parties, we join our sister circuits in concluding that the plaintiffs have not shown a substantial burden on their religious exercise.

This logic is ripped directly from Justice Anthony Kennedy's Hobby Lobby concurrence, which tempered Justice Samuel Alito's majority opinion. Kennedy explained that RFRA claims might fail if the asserted religious exercise burdened a third party's ability to exercise her own rights. And that, pretty clearly, is what's going on here: These religious organizations are essentially asserting that RFRA protects their ability to forbid their employees from accessing contraceptive coverage. Five appeals courts have now firmly rejected this reasoning. And until a court rules the other way, the Supreme Court will probably refrain from wading into the controversy.
BornAgain2

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/...to-get/ar-BBr7Fwx?ocid=spartandhp
The FDA just made the abortion pill easier to get
3/30/16

New recommendations for the abortion pill announced Wednesday by the Food and Drug Administration could increase use of the medication to terminate a pregnancy in the United States.

The new label changes the recommended dosage of the two drugs used in the abortion process. It allows the treatment to be used up to 70 days into pregnancy — three weeks longer than the previous guidelines. It also relaxes prescriber guidelines to allow, for example, a nurse practitioner to administer the drugs.

The reality in practice will not change for most abortion patients, as doctors for years have been legally diverging from the old FDA protocol based on new research. But a handful of states, including Texas and Ohio, have laws requiring abortion providers to adhere at least in part to the FDA-approved label, leading some providers there to all but abandon the use of the abortion pill.

“The label change for medication abortion will mean that it will once again be a real option for Preterm’s patients and women across the state,” Chrisse France, executive director of Preterm, an abortion provider in Ohio, said in a statement. “We will no longer be forced to practice medicine mandated by politicians whose ultimate goal is to shut us down.”

Antiabortion groups noted that the new label carries over the old label’s warnings of some of the dangers associated with the drug — including the very rare possibility of infection or death.

“The new label affirms the deadly realities of chemical abortion and underscores the need for in-person patient examination and follow-up care as well as the fact that the abortion drug regimen presents serious risks to women’s health,” Anna Paprocki, staff attorney for Americans United for Life, said in a statement.

The label change is effective immediately. It applies to Mifeprex, which is the brand name for mifepristone, one of the two drugs used in medication abortions. It blocks the production of progesterone, a hormone that prepares the lining of the uterus for a fertilized egg. A day or two after taking that drug, the woman takes the second drug, misoprostol, which causes the uterus to contract and expel the pregnancy.

The FDA said that the manufacturer of Mifeprex, Danco Laboratories, applied for the updated label as part of a “supplemental new drug application” submitted to the agency in late May. The company proposed that the treatment be used to end a pregnancy through the first 70 days of gestation — that’s 70 days from the first day of the woman’s last menstrual period. Under the original labeling, the treatment was to be used only through the first 49 days of gestation.

The agency also approved changes in the doses of the drugs and the dosing regimen. Under the old regimen, a woman would take three Mifeprex tablets on the first day and two misoprostol tablets on the follow-up day. Under the new label, a patient would take one Mifeprex tablet on the first day and four misoprostol tablets 24 to 48 hours later. Under the revised label, women are advised to return to their health-care providers a week or two after taking Mifeprex. That recommendation was two weeks under the old label.

The FDA initially approved Mifeprex in September 2000, and women can get it from their health-care providers such as clinics, medical offices and hospitals, and under the supervision of a certified prescriber. It is not available in retail pharmacies or legally sold over the Internet.

The agency said that cramping and vaginal bleeding are possible side effects of the treatment and that in some cases surgery will be needed to stop very heavy vaginal bleeding. Other potential side effects, the FDA said, include headache, diarrhea, dizziness and vomiting.
BornAgain2

http://www.dbtechno.com/health/20...rth-control-law-goes-into-effect/
4/9/16
California pharmacists Can Now Give Birth control Without A Prescription UPDATE

Birth control in California is now directly available  from a pharmacist without a prescription from their doctor.

The new law that allows California pharmacists to directly provide prescription contraceptives went into effect Friday.

As reported by the San Jose Mercury News reported. the new law gives pharmacists the ability to dispense hormonal contraceptives that women can administer themselves, including transdermal, vaginal and injection prescription birth control methods.

But it’s not a simple over-the counter process. Women requesting birth control will have to complete a health questionnaire, and a pharmacist will also consult with the patient about the most suitable form of birth control.

If the contraceptive requested poses a high blood pressure risk, the woman’s blood pressure must be taken before a prescription is issued.

Women still need to see a doctor to get an IUD or a contraceptive implant since they require a medical procedure to be administered.

Jon Roth, CEO of the California Pharmacists Association, which sponsored the original legislation on behalf of the state’s 6,500 community pharmacies said:

“Community pharmacies are the face of neighborhood health care — open beyond normal business hours, and patients do not need an appointment to see their pharmacist. That means pharmacists providing contraception will go a long way to expand women’s birth control.”

California joined Oregon as the only states that allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control.

Critics say the new law sends the wrong message to teenage girls by allowing them to more easily get contraceptives.

“They say it’s for women, but they mean anyone,” including teenage girls, California Right to Life spokeswoman Camille Giglio said.

“The ability to get contraceptives from yet another source is not a benefit to young people,” she added. “It is a barrier to communication between a mother and a child.”

California joined Oregon as the only states that allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control.

Critics say the new law sends the wrong message to teenage girls by allowing them to more easily get contraceptives.
CJ

Judge Gorsuch defended Hobby Lobby
Mar 3, 2017  
-  Queers are freaked out over Neil Gorsuch Hobby Lobby case in the 2013 10th Circuit.
http://209.157.64.200/focus/f-news/3531281/posts
http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/...dangerous-for-defending-freedom-o

I dont care what the damned queers think!
There was a REASON GOD told Israel to KILL them all.
Sadly, Gorsuch liberal 'church' pastor is a lesbian

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