Arizona Bill SB 1062 is on Governor Jan Brewer’s desk where she is expected to sign it, veto it, or ignore it and let it become law by default within the next few days. This bill modifies Arizona’s 1999 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) to permit business owners to deny service to gay customers, or potentially members of any other group, so long as they are doing it because of the religious beliefs of the owners. SB 1062 could potentially cause more harm than good.
Articles by: Michael Peabody
Standing Firm For Faith While Seeking Mutually Acceptable Solutions — Is it Possible to Peacefully Resolve the Religious Wars in America’s Marketplace?
By Michael Peabody — Parties to these kinds of disputes should be well-served if they cooperatively seek solutions by identifying and respecting those specific personal areas which are non-negotiable and cordoning them off, while respecting the freedom of the areas in between where both sides must intersect. Identifying and preserving these areas of respect and finding opportunities for accommodation is not an easy process in today’s ideologically divided world, but the results will be much more profitable for both sides than engaging in perpetual conflict in the public arena. At the same time, the religious rights of the participants on both sides to belief and practice would be honored and protected.
On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court issued two highly anticipated rulings in same-sex marriage cases. First, the Court ruled that the federal government has to legally recognize the marriages of same-sex couples in those states that have legalized them. In a second decision, the Court declined to hear an appeal in defense of a California ballot initiative that had banned same-sex marriage on grounds that the nongovernmental party bringing the appeal lacked standing. For reasons discussed below, both decisions represent incremental steps that will ultimately lead the Court to consider whether same-sex marriage should be a right nationwide.
Washington state law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees in compensation or terms or conditions of employment because of age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, national origin, veteran status, or disability. This case raises the issue of whether a failure to make reasonable accommodation for an employee’s sincere religious beliefs is implied in the statute.
In order to force the U.S. Supreme Court to issue a ruling on the merits of same-sex marriage, advocates have filed lawsuits in Utah and Michigan.
By Michael Peabody — Despite serious public opposition to involvement in another quagmire in the Middle East, chances are the United States will soon be involved in the two-year-old civil war in Syria. While there are many questions regarding how this will help or hinder national foreign policy aims, few have considered how a shift in power could affect the religious freedom of the people of Syria.
This October the United States Supreme Court will hear arguments in Town of Greece v. Galloway, a case that could change the way that prayers are conducted in legislative proceedings. The Court will determine whether city council rules, which do not openly discriminate against non-Christians or permit prayer to be used to promote a particular religion, are unconstitutional when most of the people offering the prayers are Christians.
“The Price of Citizenship”? New Mexico Supreme Court rules Christian must photograph same-sex ceremony
Yesterday, the New Mexico Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment does not protect a photographer’s decision not to photograph a same-sex commitment ceremony even if it would violate the photographer’s deeply held religious beliefs.
Although Bishop was the UC Davis scholar-athlete of the year in 2007, and was phenomenally successful on the course, even without Saturday play, he eventually gave up a promising career as a professional golfer in favor of a medical career because he knew that he could not continue to keep the Sabbath from sundown on Friday to sundown on Saturday and participate in professional tournaments.
By Michael Peabody — On Monday, June 24, 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court issued two 5–4 decisions that will make it more difficult for plaintiffs to prove that their employers violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII is the federal law designed to protect employees from discrimination on the basis of factors such as race, sex, and religion.