• Court decisions •
June 2, 2006
Observing the landscape of America’s contentious debate over marriage, scholar Stanley Kurtz of the Hudson Institute, remarks, “It has become necessary to offer a case against polygamy.” That such a claim would appear so utterly reasonable in our times is a clear sign that marriage is in big trouble. That trouble is not, for the most part, localized on the issue of polygamy, but the question of polygamy hangs over current controversies concerning same-sex marriage and the legal status of marriage as a social institution. In today’s Commentary, Dr. Mohler considers Kurtz’s new article in the current edition of the Weekly Standard.
May 31, 2006
The U. S. Supreme Court is set to rule on the constitutionality of insanity-defense laws across the nation. The case, Clark v. Arizona, has to do with a defendant, Eric Michael Clark, who at age seventeen killed an Arizona police officer, supposedly thinking that he was shooting a space alien. Clark’s attorneys argue that they should have been allowed to enter into evidence proof that Clark had been insane at the time of the murder. Their argument for a constitutional right to an insanity defense will put the Court on the record on one of the law’s most controversial issues. Today, Dr. Albert Mohler goes on the record on the same issue.
March 13, 2006
Just six years after the New Jersey Supreme Court affirmed the sanctity of human life, the U. S. Supreme Court would hand down the infamous Roe v. Wade decision, legalizing abortion. With that sweeping decision, everything changed. As attorney Jay Webber explains, “The Roe opinion completely reshaped legal views of the unborn, however, and soon thereafter the New Jersey Supremes were singing a different tune. In 1979, that court became the first to recognize the torts of wrongful birth. In light of Roe, the Court said that eugenic considerations in fact did control decisions regarding the birth of a child.”
March 8, 2006
Last week Rev. Jane Adams Spahr was found not-guilty of ministerial misconduct, even after the openly lesbian Presbyterian minister had defied the teachings of her church by performing “marriages” for two lesbian couples. Given the current state of mainline Protestantism, the actions by the trial court were not completely unexpected. Nevertheless, this act of rebellion against the church’s law and the clear teachings of Scripture sets the stage for an even larger conflict when the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) holds its General Assembly in June.
America’s Parents Served Notice–You are not the “Exclusive Providers” of Sex Information to Your Children
November 4, 2005
Who decides what children will be taught about sex? The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals served notice on America’s parents this week, ruling that parents of elementary-aged school children have no right to be the “exclusive providers” of sex information to their children. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is generally considered to be America’s most left-wing court. Nevertheless, the decision handed down on November 2 represents one of the most outrageous infringements upon parental rights ever made by an American court.
September 15, 2005
September 15, 2005
A federal judge in Sacramento ruled Wednesday that it is unconstitutional to recite the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools. U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton ruled that the pledge’s reference to one nation “under God” violates the right of children in the public schools to be “free from a coercive requirement to affirm God.” Once again, the driving force behind this case is Michael Newdow–the atheist attorney and medical doctor who won a similar decision at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2002.
July 6, 2005
Observers of the U.S. Supreme Court have noted a disturbing pattern in recent court decisions: Some justices are citing foreign court decisions in framing their own interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. This amounts to an internationalizing of the United States Constitution and raises disturbing and difficult questions about the future of the U.S. Supreme Court and its stewardship of our nation’s most fundamental document. Writing just last year, former judge Robert H. Bork issued an eloquent warning that America’s rule of law was being subverted by a rule of judges. Furthermore, those judges are increasingly looking to foreign court decisions as grounds for pushing what amounts to a cultural revolution at the expense of the U.S. Constitution.
June 28, 2005
The U.S. Supreme Court handed down its long-expected decisions on the public display of the Ten Commandments on Monday, producing more confusion than clarification in the process. Before the day was out, the nation’s High Court had handed down two decisions, represented by eight separate opinions from nine justices. At the end of the day, the real winners were the lawyers, who can look forward to a tidal wave of litigation in the aftermath of these confusing decisions.
June 27, 2005
May 19, 2005
Syndicated columnist William Murchison argues that procreation lies at the heart of the best case against same-sex marriage. The society must put a premium on procreation to survive, so Murchison reasons that this should be sufficient to privilege and protect marriage as a heterosexual institution. Here’s how he made his case in The Cult of Non-Procreation, first published back in January 2004: “As it happens, a man and a woman go together in a way — blush, blush — that same-sex couples find utterly impossible and always will. There must be a reason, right? Right. No heterosexual relationship, no procreation. No procreation, no human future. That is where the state’s interest in this thing comes in. It comes in also in consideration of the massive evidence supporting the heterosexual family as the most successful setting for training up the products of conception, namely, children. Yes, we know all about the child-beating morons who disgrace marriage. They aren’t even a patch on the loving and hard-working parents who far outnumber them. I can’t imagine anyone who grew up with such parents favoring the undermining of traditional marriage.”