The stunning leak of an early draft of the highly anticipated Dobbs ruling has elicited a firestorm of commentary and speculation. Lynn Fitch, Mississippi’s Attorney General, whose state is at the center of the case, released the following statement last evening:
“We will let the Supreme Court speak for itself and wait for the Court’s official opinion.”
1. Supreme Court has voted to overturn abortion rights, draft opinion shows
The Supreme Court has voted to strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, according to an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito circulated inside the court and obtained by POLITICO.
The draft opinion is a full-throated, unflinching repudiation of the 1973 decision which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights and a subsequent 1992 decision – Planned Parenthood v. Casey – that largely maintained the right. “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” Alito writes.
“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” he writes in the document, labeled as the “Opinion of the Court.” “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”
Deliberations on controversial cases have in the past been fluid. Justices can and sometimes do change their votes as draft opinions circulate and major decisions can be subject to multiple drafts and vote-trading, sometimes until just days before a decision is unveiled. The court’s holding will not be final until it is published, likely in the next two months.
The immediate impact of the ruling as drafted in February would be to end a half-century guarantee of federal constitutional protection of abortion rights and allow each state to decide whether to restrict or ban abortion. It’s unclear if there have been subsequent changes to the draft.
No draft decision in the modern history of the court has been disclosed publicly while a case was still pending. The unprecedented revelation is bound to intensify the debate over what was already the most controversial case on the docket this term.
The draft opinion offers an extraordinary window into the justices’ deliberations in one of the most consequential cases before the court in the last five decades. Some court-watchers predicted that the conservative majority would slice away at abortion rights without flatly overturning a 49-year-old precedent. The draft shows that the court is looking to reject Roe’s logic and legal protections.
Hawley: Supreme Court leak attempt by Left to change decision
From the Washington Examiner:
Hawley said the leak to Politico reporting the high court’s apparent decision to overturn Roe, a five-decade-old ruling finding a constitutional right to privacy that extends to abortion access, with its ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, an abortion case argued before the justices this term, was a stunt aimed at reversing the outcome.
“I have to tell you — it sounds real to me,” Hawley told Fox News’s Sean Hannity. “I think it’s plainly an attempt by the Left to try and change the outcome in this case and corrupt the process, and the court must not allow that to happen.”
- Focus on the Family President Jim Daly Applauds Unanimous Decision Upholding Flying of Christian Flag
From Jim Daly:
The U.S. Supreme Court’s unanimous decision today upholding the constitutionality of a Christian flag displayed on government property in Shurtleff v. City of Boston is welcome though long overdue news. It should be obvious to all that banning one flag – the Christian flag – out of dozens flown on behalf of civic groups at events on public property over a period of years is unacceptable discrimination against the Christian viewpoint. Thankfully, the Court got it right in this instance.
For far too long, speech that has a Christian or religious component has suffered at the hands of government officials who either don’t understand or willfully ignore the First Amendment’s breadth. The Framers took pains to provide a level playing field for religious speech, even as it ensured that no government entity could establish one religion as official. Their wisdom is timeless.
You don’t honor free speech by censoring religious speech, and hopefully this 9-0 decision will send a strong message of support for religious freedom and free speech across the land.
Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Christian Flag in Boston Free Speech Case
From The Daily Citizen:
In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court declared a victory for free speech by ruling that in 2017, the City of Boston’s refusal to allow a civic group called Camp Constitution, and its director, Harold Shurtleff, to fly a Christian flag at its event held on city property constituted viewpoint discrimination.
In so doing, the court reversed a decision from the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston’s favor.
The court’s decision was written by soon-retiring Justice Stephen Breyer, who noted that Boston’s program of allowing civic groups to fly flags of their choosing at events and rallies held on a certain piece of city property had never included a single rejection of a flag until the request to fly the Christian flag.
The main issue in the case, according to Breyer, was whether the city’s program of allowing flags to be flown amounted to “government speech” or private speech. If the message is the government’s, then under previous Supreme Court precedents the government can control what is said.
However, if the city’s program could be considered a public forum for the expression of private viewpoints, then denying Camp Constitution the opportunity to fly the Christian flag because of its “Christian” message violated the government’s duty to remain neutral.
“We conclude that, on balance, Boston did not make the raising and flying of private groups’ flags a form of government speech,” Breyer wrote. “That means, in turn, that Boston’s refusal to let Shurtleff and Camp Constitution raise their flag based on its religious viewpoint ‘abridg[ed]’ their ‘freedom of speech.’”
- Moms and Dads Don’t Check Their Rights at the School Door
Focus on the Family president Jim Daly writes:
Once upon a time, public school educators and administrators routinely complemented the work of parents in the home.
With increasing regularity, moms and dads find themselves battling “woke” policies along with radical politicians and activists seeking to usurp their rights and threaten the health and safety of their kids.
Two years ago, January Littlejohn’s 13-year-old daughter came home from school and shared with her mom that her Florida middle school had given her the option of which bathroom she would prefer to use – girls or boys. It seems the teenager had expressed confusion about her gender and so administrators made the young woman aware of a “transgender support plan.”
Only the girl’s mother wasn’t consulted or brought into the conversation. The school believed it had the right to help January’s daughter “transition” without any parental permission.
“Eventually we did see the transgender support plan, which was a six-page document that they completed with my daughter,” Ms. Littlejohn said. “They asked her questions that would have absolutely impacted her safety, such as which restroom she preferred to use and which sex she preferred to room with on overnight field trips.”
In Missouri, a group of parents have enlisted the help of the Southeastern Legal Foundation after their children were given (without their permission) surveys asking about their gender identity, mental health, racial identity and political beliefs.
Incidentally, here in Colorado Springs, a colleague of mine was taking his 9-year-old son for a wellness checkup. The doctor asked the young boy about his preferred pronouns. The child responded with a blank stare. “He doesn’t know what you’re talking about,” the father told the doctor.
So much for allowing kids to be kids anymore.
Parental rights are under assault across the nation. In truth, the love and care of our children aren’t partisan issues – but try telling that to activists who feel otherwise.
I’m actually headed to Virginia later this week to interview Virginia’s Lieutenant Governor Winsome Sears. Ms. Sears and her boss, Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, won a bruising campaign last fall after their opponent, former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, suggested in a debate that parents shouldn’t be telling schools what they should teach.
A majority of Virginia’s voters had a very different point of view.
In reality, parental rights are sacrosanct. Moms and dads don’t check their authority at the school door. I’m looking forward to discussing this (and other matters) with Lt. Gov. Sears. I’ll be sure and let you know when the program will air.
- ‘It’s not just a number’: At least 6,000 children in Alabama need foster homes
From The Tuscaloosa News:
“We want people to know, it’s not just a number, these are real children,” said Sharen Ford, the director of foster care and adoption at Focus on the Family, a global Christian-based organization dedicated to helping foster families thrive.
Ford and other members of Focus on the Family’s Wait No More program have visited Alabama recently, raising awareness about the needs of foster children and the benefits of becoming a foster parent.
“It’s just being a good neighbor, caring for your neighbor who’s caring for other children,” she said of her work helping foster families.
Ford said she believes foster and adoptive parents are essential in the development of vulnerable children who just need a little extra nurturing and guidance. And the satisfaction of watching those children develop is the unseen joy of being a foster parent.
5. The Problems of Putting off Children
From Public Discourse:
There are also reasons to be concerned about waiting too long to have children. Leading the list are the increased risks that advanced maternal age poses to the mother and her baby. Pregnancy at thirty-five and older is sometimes bluntly described as “geriatric” and it is more prone to the natural shocks that flesh is heir to. Professional-class parents have a reputation as overprotective, but they often increase the risks to mother and child by delaying childbearing.
Of course, to brave these dangers women must first become pregnant, which becomes more difficult with age. Despite our cultural expectations, the female reproductive system begins declining around age thirty. Which is to say that the culturally-favored reproductive strategy for educated professionals is to wait to have children until female fertility is on the downswing. Having children during one’s best childbearing years is seen as, and statistically is, lower-class—the prejudices of the educated are sometimes stupid.
Furthermore, letting the biological clock tick close to midnight not only increases the likelihood of fertility problems, it also narrows the window in which they can be diagnosed and treated. Relatedly, putting off children makes it more difficult to have more than one or two. Yet these risks are often overlooked by those who say they want to have children—just not yet.
Nor do the difficulties of having children later in life end with conceiving and safely giving birth. The most obvious problem is that time wears us down. Even those among us who haven’t put on a few extra pounds or picked up a nagging ache or ailment are probably going to find it harder at thirty-five than at twenty-five to cope with the demands of a newborn or a toddler. The sleep-deprived haze of newborn days will never be easy, but the energy and resilience of youth can reduce the strain. Playing punk rock at my elder daughter to help her sleep makes for a good story now, but I was struggling to keep it together at the time—my capacity to stay up late, sleep poorly, and bounce back quickly has been much reduced.
6. For Gen Z, One Is the Loneliest Number
Focus on the Family’s Tim Goeglein writes in The Daily Signal:
In his book “Loneliness,” University of Chicago professor John Cacioppo wrote that negative risks of living alone are far worse than air pollution or obesity.
If that is the case, the long-term prognosis for Gen Z, those born between 1997 and 2012, is not good, as they have already spent much of their formative childhood years experiencing profound loneliness. According to a recent American National Family Life survey, at least 56% of Gen Zers say they feel lonely once or twice a month. In contrast, only 24% of baby boomers felt lonely as children.
There are numerous reasons for this loneliness, including the decline of institutions that used to provide community for children—churches, schools, scout groups, and sport leagues (particularly in the COVID-19 era) while isolating activities such as social media have risen to take their place.
But a great deal of this loneliness can be traced to living in lonely homes—with only one parent present—and that parent often having to spend most of his or her time outside of the home working to make ends meet—which is a major consequence of the continued family breakdown in our society.
7. A same-sex marriage roils Calvin University
From World Magazine:
In December, officials at Calvin University, a Christian school in Grand Rapids, Mich., voted to renew a two-year teaching contract for Joe Kuilema, an associate professor of sociology. Eight days later, the provost received photos of Kuilema officiating a same-sex wedding.
One of the women in the Oct. 15, 2021, ceremony, Nicole Sweda, was also a Calvin employee, school officials later learned. She has since resigned.
Now the private university affiliated with the Christian Reformed Church in North America (CRC) is rescinding its recommendation to reappoint Kuilema. In a seven-page memo sent to Kuilema by Provost Noah Toly, school officials cited the professor’s failure to consult his department dean, the provost, or the president about officiating the same-sex wedding. The memo, obtained by Calvin’s student newspaper Chimes, included a summary from the dean of Kuilema’s department, Benita Wolters-Fredlund, who called his decision “a serious lapse of judgment.” She added that Sweda and Kuilema both were “clearly and unambiguously accountable to Calvin’s staff handbook, which only condones sexual relations within the confines of marriage between one man and one woman.”
Kuilema has taught at Calvin since 2008. The Board of Trustees previously denied his tenure in 2018 due to his “tone and strategy” regarding LGBTQ advocacy. But the board gave him a two-year renewable contract that was up for approval for a second time last fall.
8. Peanuts Mother’s Day special declares ‘some kids have two moms’ amid media push for LGBT inclusion
From the Christian Post:
An upcoming Apple TV special featuring the characters from the Peanuts comic strip will promote same-sex families in the latest example of children’s programming incorporating LGBT-related content.
On Friday, Apple TV released a trailer for an upcoming Mother’s Day special titled “Snoopy Presents To Mom (and Dad), with Love.” The special, scheduled for release Friday, stars the characters from the Peanuts comic strip including Charlie Brown, Linus, Lucy, Peppermint Patty, Snoopy, Woodstock and others.
When Peppermint Patty tells Marcie, “I don’t know why I get so upset,” her friend replies that it was “because you miss your mom.” At this point, Peppermint Patty laments that she “never had a mom.”
“Maybe you miss what moms do,” Marcie says. Peppermint Patty remarks, “My dad does all that mom stuff for me,” adding: “For Mother’s Day, I’m going to celebrate my dad.”
From there, Peppermint Patty asks, “There are all types of moms, right?” After responding, “of course,” Marcie notes that “some kids have two moms.”
9. Frozen Heads, Anti-Aging Drugs & the Never-Ending Quest for Eternal Life
From The Daily Citizen:
Sunday’s Washington Post featured a lengthy story highlighting the emerging and exploding anti-aging industry, which is expected to generate upwards of $600 billion by 2025. The author catalogued thousands of years of recorded efforts to either lengthen or preserve life.
The legendary baseball player and Red Sox icon Ted Williams died back on July 5, 2002. But twenty years later, his body is being preserved at a lab in Scottsdale, Ariz. The “Splendid Splinter” was a fan of “Cryonics” – a low-temperature freezing and storage process. It reportedly cost upwards of $250,000.
Williams’ head was severed from his body and is now stored in a steel can filled with liquid nitrogen. The rest of his body is preserved in the same substance in a 9-foot-tall steel cylinder. It’s all based on the hope cures will eventually come and the body will be resurrected.
Calico Life Sciences is a Google-owned company launched eight years ago with the goal of “solving” death. The Post article also noted their owner – Amazon magnate Jeff Bezos – recently poured a portion of his fortune into a company called Altos Labs. The Silicon Valley start-up is pursuing “biological reprogramming” – technology that promises to reverse aging and maybe even help people live forever.
It’s not going to happen.
The quest for eternal life on earth is a fool’s errand.
“No one can live forever; all will die,” we read in the Psalms. “No one can escape the power of the grave” (89:48).
The only way to “solve” death is to turn your life over to Jesus Christ. That’s when the fun really begins and where you can be assured of finding everlasting life.
10.Left Panics That Millions Of Babies Might Live
From The Babylon Bee:
Unconsolable wailing was heard across the country today as the left learned that there is a chance Roe v. Wade could be overturned, which would “lead to more babies being allowed to live.”
The outcry from the left came after a leak from the Supreme Court indicated the justices drafted an opinion overturning Roe, stoking fears that millions more cute infants made in the image of God could be born.