A few weeks ago, Carl and Angel Larson received a ruling from U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit that protected their religious freedom as creative professionals. This past week, the Arizona Supreme Court also upheld that same right for Breanna Koski and Joanna Duka of Brush & Nib Studio. How significant was that win? Read on to find out! Plus, a Torah-reading atheist argues for the de-stigmatization of religious students at secular universities, a well-respected psychologist from Johns Hopkins University warns of the dangers of the transgender movement, and we get yet another horrific reminder of the brutality of abortion. All of this from the Alliance Alert team.
ADF in the News
In a major win for the free speech and the free exercise of religion, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled on Monday that a Phoenix law violated the fundamental guarantee that artists can create freely without fear of unjust government punishment. This is the second victory within a month that courts have ruled favor of free speech for all Americans in Alliance Defending Freedom cases. In Arizona, ADF clients Breanna Koski and Joanna Duka own Brush & Nib Studio, and while they serve everyone, they can’t create custom artwork celebrating all messages or events. The City of Phoenix was threatening Breanna and Joanna with steep fines and jail time, but the Arizona Supreme Court’s decision upheld their freedom to live and work according to their faith. At National Review, David French breaks down the court's decision and praises the judges who rejected the notion of "free speech for me, but not for thee."
The Atlantic: When Faith Comes Up, Students Avert Their Eyes
Discussing religion is becoming increasingly difficult in university classrooms across the nation, argues Wesleyan University President Michael S. Roth. A Torah-reading atheist, Roth writes that he has firsthand experience watching religious students face stigmatization and marginalization from students and professors alike. The religious beliefs of historical figures are so foundational to many world-changing events, Roth points out, that academics need to treat religion with respect to present deepen cultural understanding in our polarized society. Roth calls upon his colleagues and students at secular universities to reform a campus culture where religious students fear being "outed," and where professors tend to treat religious students as intellectual inferiors.
Marriage and the Family
Once a top name in the early gender identity movement of the 1970s, Johns Hopkins University professor Dr. Paul McHugh continues to sound the alarm against ideologically driven treatment of patients confused about their gender. From McHugh’s perspective, doctors and psychologists are essentially experimenting on people with gender dysphoria without alerting patients to that reality. Transgender "treatments" are used with little to no evidence that the treatments have a medical benefit, McHugh points out, comparing transgender treatments to frontal lobotomies, and the issue is even more urgent when it comes to children. Rather than continuing the disastrous trend, McHugh calls upon doctors to spare their patients a lifetime of unnecessary and harmful treatments that will one day be rightly seen as an embarrassing episode in medical history.
Sanctity of Life
A horrific discovery underscores the brutal nature of abortion, writes Melanie Israel at The Daily Signal. After a well-known abortionist in Illinois passed away, his family discovered the remains of over 2,000 aborted and preserved baby parts at his house. While the exact motive for keeping these body parts is unclear, one can't help but think of the infamous Kermit Gosnell, whose Philadelphia office was likewise filled with the remains of aborted children. Israel also points out that the now-deceased Dr. Ulrich Klopfer violated several notice and documentation codes and maintained a "run-down" facility—another painful reminder of the inhumane treatment that aborted children and their mothers receive at the hands of abortionists.
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