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A Deeper Look at the Recent Religious Freedom Cases Brought Before the Supreme Court

Were They True Victories?

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On the surface, it appeared this past week’s SCOTUS ruling on florist Barronelle Stutzman’s refusal to provide floral arrangements for a gay “wedding” was a victory for religious freedom.

But it, like the Masterpiece Cake Shop decision from earlier this month, has its nuances, and may not be the slam dunk for Constitutional religious freedom that Christian small business owners in this nation sorely need after the historic Obergefell v. Hodges case that established same-sex marriage as legal across the land.

Author and commentator Dr. Michael Brown explained these nuances over at Charisma News this week, urging the church to pray that we can eventually get the day in court that we’ve been waiting for.

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First, he says, it is important to note that the Court did not rule in favor of Stutzman, but rather, sent her case back to the Washington court that had originally ruled unanimously against her.

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“The Supreme Court could have agreed to hear Stutzman’s case, but it chose not to at this point,” he says. But this isn’t all bad news, as “It could also have refused to hear the case entirely, which would have been a devastating defeat for this Christian grandmother. Thankfully, that did not happen.”

“But what the court did decide is significant. The court sent the case back to Washington, advising the justices there to reconsider their initial decision, which found Stutzman in violation of the state’s anti-discrimination laws, in light of the Supreme Court’s own decision in Masterpiece Cakes,” he explains.

In the Masterpiece Cake decision, the Court did not actually rule in favor of baker Jack Phillips because of his Constitutional right to refuse to lend his services to a ceremony that violated his deeply held faith, but that the Colorado Human Rights Commission had shown distinct hostility towards said faith.

This was a First Amendment issue, the court said, because he was deprived of a trial that would show no bias towards his faith–the issue as to whether or not a small business owner has a First Amendment right to refuse to provide services to a same-sex wedding, Justice Kennedy, who wrote the decision, said, would have to wait for another day.

So this is the context in which SCOTUS said the Washington Supreme Court would have to reconsider Stutzman’s case. While SCOTUS overturned the Colorado Human Rights Commission’s ruling on Phillip’s case, they instead sent Stutzman’s case back to the lower court, so this is an important distinction to make when considering the outcome, as Brown clarifies:

Can we expect them to change their ruling in light of the Supreme Court’s order? It would be foolish to get too optimistic, given their previous 9-0 decision. Yet it’s clear that the case was returned to them for a reason. And should they rule the same way again, the case will surely be appealed back to the Supreme Court.

Perhaps, if that scenario unfolds, the court will issue a more definitive defense of our First Amendment rights.

But let’s pray even now for justice to prevail. The State of Washington has literally sought to bankrupt this Christian grandmother. Specifically, “Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Washington … filed discrimination lawsuits” against Stutzman. “In addition to targeting her business, Arlene’s Flowers, Inc., they sued Stutzman personally, ensuring that any assets she might own beyond the flower shop could be taken from her to pay their own legal fees if she lost.”

Are you going to tell me there is no animus against religion in these outrageous actions? It’s high time these hostile sentiments get exposed.

The battle for religious freedom following Oberfield v. Hodges is far from over–but between these recent rulings and the hope of yet another originalist appointed to the court, there’s good reason to hope.

Faith

The Systemic Antisemitism Of the Woke Culture and Modern Leftism

They claim to be fighting against hatred, but truth is there is systemic antisemitism of woke and cancel culture which media doesn’t report.

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The far left has been injecting Antisemitism into the American political discourse since the early 1970s when leftist African American leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Andrew Young, Louis Farrakhan, and the beloved bigot, Al Sharpton, all went public with their Antisemitism. One would think that in today’s times of wokeism and cancel culture, the Jew-haters of the left would be exposed, shamed, and weeded out of the leftist movements. However, the opposite is happening. antisemitism of woke culture According to Melissa Langsam Braunstein of the National Examiner, fighting Antisemitism can get you canceled. Woke theology teaches that Jews are privileged oppressors. So, when Jews are literally assaulted on the streets by the Left’s political allies, the incidents become Rorschach tests. Many view Jews as victims, but the woke prefer to intimate that Jews must be the aggressors. As a general rule, leftists don’t blame victims unless they’re Jewish. One thing you may have noticed with the rise of Anti-Semitic attacks in the U.S. concurrent with the recent Israel-Hamas war is that Antisemitism is that in most cases liberals didn’t criticize anti-Semitic attacks without mentioning Islamophobia despite the fact that there was no actual link between the two. But that’s not totally new. In 2019 when some Democrats wanted to rebuke Rep. Omar for her Antisemitism, the Congressional Black Caucus blocked the resolution because it didn’t mention Islamophobia. Instead, they passed a generic resolution that basically said that being mean to others is bad. Really? I learned that lesson when I was a child watching programs such as Romper Room, Howdy Doody, and Captain Kangaroo. As for the Jew-hating Rep Omar, she not only voted for the measure but celebrated it as a step toward fighting Islamophobia. At the end of June 2021, “April Powers, previously Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer…

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Faith

How to Keep Your Kids From Becoming Liberal

here is beauty and goodness in a community of like-minded families.

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Socialism, atheism, hyper-sexualism, wokeism, and the belief that America is evil is now the norm in government schools. I saw this coming years ago before my wife and I started our family which led us to homeschool our children. But we quickly learned that simply schooling at home was not enough. Please read the following message from my wife. It could save your family a lot of heartache, like it saved ours. Brandon Vallorani, Founder of Flag and Cross and Thrasher Coffee I began homeschooling in 2000, when my oldest daughter turned 4 years old. Armed with my bachelor’€™s degree in education and a lifelong desire to teach, I felt confident in my abilities. By 2012, our dream of a full house came true. We now had 7 children ages 16 years old down to newborn. Life was crazy but good. In the midst of raising an infant, toddlers, and teenagers, I had begun to notice some serious learning struggles with one of our children. Over the next two years, I sought help anywhere I could turn. Desperately trying to fix our problems, I scheduled appointments for testing with child psychologists and made numerous changes to our homeschool routine. Countless hours were spent in prayer. Nothing was working. I was overwhelmed and on the verge of quitting completely. And then I attended an informational meeting about Classical Conversations. Immediately inspired, my plan was to save€ the youngest members of our family by joining a Classical Conversations Community. I had been homeschooling for 14 years without a support system, and we all needed friends to stand in the gap. At this informational meeting, I learned about Classical Christian education: grammar, dialectic, and rhetorical stages. I saw a Director light up as she described the beauty of the program. They spoke about…

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