Tertullian once called hope “patience with the lamp lit.”
The glow from the Supreme Court is real – but will it continue to shine?
- Focus President Jim Daly Responds to Leaked Draft of Dobbs’ Opinion
From Jim Daly:
“The Supreme Court’s Office of Public Information has confirmed the authenticity of the draft of the Dobbs’ opinion leaked to media – but stressed the highly-anticipated decision is still pending. I hope and pray the strong sentiments and solid legal reasoning expressed in the document will soon be final.
“Returning this issue to the states is an important first step in the effort to relegate the barbarism of abortion to the dust heap of history. Championing the dignity and respect of all life is not radical – it’s the mark and measure of a civilized culture. There is a direct correlation between the legalization of abortion and the coarsening of our culture. Affirming life will provide moms and dads with an opportunity to emphasize what is good, noble and right. There is nothing more beautiful than a baby. There is nothing more charming than the innocence of a child. Why deprive the world of their goodness, especially with so many families eager and willing to adopt?
“Curiously, the majority of the rhetoric surrounding abortion centers on a woman’s right to choose and little to nothing on a baby’s right to live. As we have for the past half-century, we must continue serving the needs of mothers while protecting and giving voice to the innocent and defenseless children whose lives hang in the balance. The long overdue reversal of Roe will also reinforce and put on notice fathers, who bear significant responsibility when it comes to pregnancy and the parenting of a child.
“I am praying that a majority of the justices will, indeed, overturn Roe – and in doing so, help restore a state’s right to protect a pre-born child’s right to life.”
National Review: Enthusiasm for Abortion Is from the Depths of Hell
The Daily Citizen: 26 States Ready to Protect Preborn Human Life in the Womb if ‘Roe v. Wade’ Falls
In light of the monumental Supreme Court leak of the draft majority opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision, now is a good time to revisit where the states stand on protecting life.
If the draft majority opinion is any indication of what the Court’s final decision might be, there is certainly cause for cautious optimism in the pro-life movement.
As reported by The Daily Citizen, “Chief Justice John Roberts has confirmed the authenticity of the Alito draft while warning that it is not the court’s final opinion.”
Come this June, or perhaps sooner, the Court will release the final opinion. Votes may change, but if they do not, abortion policy moving forward will be developed on a state-by-state basis.
Pro-life and pro-abortion groups agree that if Roe v. Wade falls, 26 states are already equipped or very likely to restrict abortion early in the pregnancy. Below is a list of pro-life states willing to protect preborn babies.
The Daily Citizen: After Supreme Court Leak, Lawmakers Will Vote to Enshrine Abortion Protections in Federal Law
Monday night, the news outlet Politico published an authentic copy of a U.S. Supreme Court draft majority opinion overturning Roe v. Wade and returning lawmaking authority over abortion back to the states.
Though the draft is authentic, it is not final nor conclusive of how the court will eventually rule in the case.
Speaking from the floor of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday morning, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced that given the court’s leaked opinion, Congress’ upper chamber will soon vote to codify Roe v. Wade into federal law.
“Now that the court is poised to strike down Roe, it is my intention for the Senate to hold a vote on legislation to codify the right to an abortion into law,” Majority Leader Schumer said.
“A vote on this legislation is not an abstract exercise. This is as urgent and as real as it gets … Every American is going to see on which side every senator stands.”
National Review: Collins Claims Kavanaugh and Gorsuch Misled Her. She’s Wrong
Senator Susan Collins says that Samuel Alito’s draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade is “completely inconsistent with what Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh said in their hearings and in our meetings in my office.” Ramesh and Ed have debunked this claim. Conceding that long-established precedents should be treated with more weight does not preclude the possibility that those decisions were wrongly decided and should be overturned. Plessy was on the books for over 60 years. As Chuck Schumer noted at the time, “this is not as simple as Judge Kavanaugh saying that Roe is settled law. Everything the Supreme Court decides is settled law until it unsettles it. Saying a case is settled law is not the same thing as saying a case was correctly decided.”
For instance, when nominee Sonia Sotomayor was asked about Heller in 2009, she also conceded that it was “settled law,” according to then-senator Mark Udall. “Clearly she spoke to the fact that settled law is just that, and the Heller case has been considered by the court, and she sees that as the law, and she will work off of what the court decided as other cases may come to the court’s attention,” Udall said. Within a year of becoming a justice, Sotomayor was already targeting the Second Amendment — which apparently isn’t a “super precedent.”
- Oklahoma Governor Signs Fetal Heartbeat Abortion Bill
From National Review:
Oklahoma governor Kevin Stitt signed a law on Tuesday banning abortions in the state upon detection of a fetal heartbeat, or about six weeks into pregnancy.
The law, known as the Oklahoma Heartbeat Act, is modeled on a Texas law that took effect in September 2021 that allows private citizens to sue anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion, barring the pregnant woman herself. The Oklahoma bill allows lawsuits of up to $10,000 per abortion against anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion. Rapists and men who commit incest are barred from suing an abortion provider under the law.
3. J.D. Vance wins a crowded Ohio GOP Senate race
Author J.D. Vance, who last month earned former President Donald Trump’s late endorsement in Ohio’s Republican Senate primary, has won the GOP contest, according to a race call from The Associated Press.
Vance topped Josh Mandel, a former state treasurer who had pitched himself in Trump’s mold, and who had been near the top of polls for months.
The Republican nominee will face off against Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, who won his party’s contest earlier Tuesday evening, the AP said.
Vance, who rose to conservative prominence after writing the memoir Hillbilly Elegy, also beat state Sen. Matt Dolan in the GOP primary, along with Mike Gibbons, an investment banker, and former state Republican Party Chair Jane Timken.
4.Christian Schools Flooded with Applications as Controversies Plague Public Education
Before the pandemic, many Christian schools struggled with low enrollment. Now, there are waiting lists.
One of the things that came out of COVID was parents were looking over the shoulder of their kids as they were taking online classes and realizing some of the stuff that’s being taught was against their values, even if they weren’t Christians,” said Hamrick.
E. Ray Moore, founder of the conservative Christian Education Initiative calls it a “Once in a 100-year moment.”
“It awakened many people, Christian churches, and some pastors to recognize that it is our responsibility to provide the Christian education or our children, not the government,” said Moore.
The Association of Christian Schools International, one of the country’s largest networks, has seen double-digit growth since the pandemic hit. The Association of Classical Christian Schools has added some 10,000 students. The number of homeschoolers has doubled. And new Christian schools are popping up all over the country.
5. Hillsdale Prof Speaks at St. Vincent About ‘Black Privilege and Racial Hysteria’ – College Apologizes and Creates New Policy for Speakers
From The Daily Citizen:
Hillsdale College Professor David Azzerad gave a lecture at St. Vincent College, a Benedictine school in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. The talk was titled, “Black Privilege and Racial Hysteria in Contemporary America.”
A question and answer that followed the talk was marked by civility and a desire to engage with Azzerad, perhaps because many of the students had never heard a viewpoint like his, a counter-narrative to current, academic dogmatism.
But when some students and alumni later reacted negatively, the administration quickly denounced his talk.
6. 44 Ways to Keep Kids Off Screens
From the Gospel Coalition:
It’s easier to respond to screen time whining with a cheerful “no” when I can think of alternatives to suggest. Since ideas can be hard to come up with in the moment, here’s a list of 44 activities that don’t involve screens.
- The First Commercial Brain Computer Interface Is Entering Human Trials
Synchron Inc., which develops a so-called brain-computer interface and competes with Elon Musk’s Neuralink Corp., enrolled the first patient in its U.S. clinical trial, putting the company’s implant on a path toward possible regulatory approval for wider use in people with paralysis. The early feasibility study is funded by the National Institutes of Health and will evaluate the safety of the dev
Brain-computer interfaces, or BCI, could empower millions of disabled people to more easily communicate and engage in modern life. Paralysis affects more than 5 million people in the U.S. alone, according to researchers at the Centers for Disease Control. Farther in the future, Musk and other technologists talk of a world where anyone could receive implants to achieve a sort of superintelligence.
Synchron’s device, once implanted, travels to the brain through blood vessels. (Neuralink’s is implanted directly into the skull.) After it reaches the brain, the Stentrode translates brain activity into signals designed to allow texting, emailing, online shopping or other activities using an external device, Synchron said.
8. Boost Your Mental Health By Saying No
From the Wall Street Journal:
What is the best way to say no? Here’s some advice.
Don’t rush: We tend to overestimate how quickly people expect us to get back to them, even via email. Dr. Bohns recommends pausing before responding to an invite or request. Figure out what you want to do first.
Start with thank you: You’ll make the other person feel better—less personally rejected—by showing appreciation for their request or offer: “Thank you so much for thinking of me! I’d love to, but unfortunately…” And you’ll feel less guilty about saying no if you were gracious about it, says Dr. Taitz.
Be honest: It’s better to give an honest—and gracious—response, she says. An example: “I’d love to come to dinner, thanks. But I reserve evenings for time with my family.”
Soften the blow: You can do this by offering to do something else for the person. If you can’t attend a friend’s wedding, for instance, you could offer to help with the planning, or even just to take her to lunch to hear about it.
Stay Firm: Some people refuse to take no for an answer. If this happens, try repeating—politely!—what you already told them. You may also need to say: “I feel like you’re pressuring me. Please understand why I really can’t say yes.”
- For first-time homebuyers, are starter homes becoming extinct?
Are starter- or entry-level homes on the verge of extinction?
“They’re not extinct, but they are endangered,” said Robert Dietz, chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders. “It’s much harder to find and build homes in smaller quantities in today’s market given the demand, space challenges, and potential regulatory burdens. The submarket that’s been least supplied has been the entry-level home.”
Homes ranging in price from $100,000 to $250,000, the typical cost for an entry-level home, have seen nearly a 28% decrease in inventory from a year ago, says the National Association of Realtors.
- Remembering Peb Jackson – the Most Interesting Man in the World
Focus on the Family president Jim Daly writes:
Who’s the most interesting and adventurous person you’ve ever known?
My friend Peb Jackson, who died yesterday just 9 days shy of his 79th birthday, would be at the top of my list.
Born at the University of Kansas, Peb’s family migrated west during his childhood, settling in Southern California, where his father taught history at USC. As a young boy, his love for adventure found him going on bike rides or swimming with his twin brother. As he grew, he gravitated to mountain and ice climbing, as well as hunting, skiing and fishing, to name just a few hobbies. The great outdoors was a cathedral full of never-ending awe and wonder. He was the kind of guy who felt if he wasn’t on the edge, he was probably taking up too much room.
Peb hired me to work at Focus on the Family over 34 years ago. We became fast friends. I helped him start our international outreach, where we traveled the world together. Fiercely curious and friendly, Peb never knew a stranger. With a servant’s heart, he was always showing interest in others, offering to help people pursue the dreams the Lord put on their heart.
In a world full of egos and egotists, Peb was humble. He shunned the spotlight. He was more than happy to stand in the wings and cheer his friends on. He was the guy who knew the guy – and nothing gave him more pleasure or satisfaction than introducing you to him (or her).
It would be impossible for me to list everyone Peb introduced me to over the years, but you would know many of his dear friends, including U2’s Bono, President George W. Bush, Eugene Peterson and Rick Warren. But he wasn’t a name dropper. He was a friend who dropped into people’s lives and tried to make a difference. I should also add that Peb treated everyone the same. Whether the parking attendant or the president, he saw you as someone of great worth.
I’ve been blessed with several mentors during my years here at Focus on the Family, but Peb poured into my life in unique and important ways. A good listener, he possessed the wisdom of Solomon and the fearlessness of the apostle Paul.
When his name appeared on my phone, I knew I was in for a treat. He was the kind of guy who left you feeling better. He brought perspective.
Throughout these last four decades, Peb has taught me many things.
He regularly reminded me that life is an adventure. It’s an occasion. Rise to it.
He stressed that Jesus is our ultimate guide on our journey. Walk in his footsteps. No matter how narrow the path or close the ledge, you’re going to be okay.
From his 51-plus-year love affair with his beloved wife, Sharon, whom he leaves behind, he showed many how to cherish and treasure their spouses and loved ones.
Peb’s daring demonstrated to me that we’ll never know how far we can go – until we go as far as we can. There are good risks in life.
You’ve probably never heard of Henry Lyte, a Scottish pastor and poet who died in 1847. But you’re likely familiar with the famous hymn he wrote, “Abide with Me.” Henry was dying of tuberculosis when he wrote these words:
Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day
Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away
Change and decay in all around I see
O Thou who changest not, abide with me
I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness
Where is death’s sting?
Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me
Peb is now free of his cancer-ravaged body, soaring in Glory because the Lord has abided with him, and him with He. In fact, as he lay dying in the final weeks of his life, he told a mutual friend that this last stretch of living, which was tough, was “the ultimate adventure.” What an attitude! That’s because he knew where he was running – and he knew whose arms he was running towards.
If you don’t have that same assurance, I hope you will give us a call or reach out and allow us the privilege of sharing the Good News and promise of the Gospel.
Rest in peace, my dear friend, Peb. I look forward to seeing you again soon.