Writing

Gottry writes about constitutional law, religious freedom, and cultural issues, and his work has been published in The Wall Street Journal, National Review, The Hill, The Daily Wire, Public Discourse, The Federalist, The Daily Signal, and various additional print and online outlets. He has appeared on MSNBC and has been quoted by USA Today, NPR, Fox News, and others. 

Highlights20192018201720162015Legal Writing

Boys in Girls’ Locker Rooms…What Could Go Wrong?

September 12, 2019 | Townhall
"Does the embrace of tolerance require the surrender of bodily privacy? More to the point, must our middle school-age girls disrobe in the presence of biological males in order to sufficiently demonstrate a commitment to the new orthodoxy?"
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Pro-Life Centers Have Free Speech, Too

March 19, 2018 | The Wall Street Journal
"Pro-life pregnancy centers provide women with a wholly life-affirming message. Signs promoting subsidized abortion undercut that message and contradict the centers' very reason for existence. As Justice David Souter put it in the Boston parade case, such a law requires the centers to 'affirm in one breath that which they deny in the next,' rendering free-speech protections 'empty.'"
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If speech is violence at Georgetown, then is stealing a virtue?

February 13, 2018 | Washington Examiner
"Last fall, a conservative student group at Georgetown University faced expulsion from campus and the removal of funding because it promoted a Catholic view of human sexuality. After much hoopla, the group — Love Saxa –— was allowed to remain on campus and retain its eligibility for funding. But, as the saying goes, if you can't beat them, rob them."
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Supreme Court to Decide if FACT Act Hacks Away at First Amendment

November 16, 2017 | National Review
"California lawmakers made their position on abortion abundantly clear when they passed a law called the "Reproductive FACT Act." The law, which took effect in January 2016, targets pro-life pregnancy-care centers. Let's be clear, no speculation or inference regarding the law's intent is necessary; the state admitted targeting centers that "discourage" abortion. And they do so brazenly."
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Artists shouldn't need to choose between their conscience and their craft

November 10, 2017 | The Hill
"It's no secret that the court's ruling has the potential to make a profound and lasting impact on society. Multiple sources have referred to the case as one of the most important religious liberty cases in decades. The court's decision, as I've written previously, could shape a generation's understanding of the First Amendment and the specific freedoms that it guarantees for all Americans."
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USDA threatens to shut down farm for conservative article in break room

March 10, 2017 | Federalist
"Maybe it's just nostalgia talking, but the slaughtering, processing, packaging, and distribution of animals used to be so much simpler."
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When 'Liberty' Forces 18 Girls Into a Single-Stall Shower Room

September 9, 2016 | Daily Signal
"And the wisdom of the New Regime 2.0 goes like this: The march toward true liberty requires 18 girls to squeeze into a prison cell-sized changing space or abandon their bodily privacy, and their right to safety and comfort in the most intimate and vulnerable of settings."
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Do Christians Belong in Politics and Culture?

December 5, 2019 | CBN News
"If you are a Christian, you have a spiritual obligation to be "salt and light" by seeking the good of your community. This means Christians are called to live out our faith outside the four walls of our homes. We need to be involved not just in our churches, but in our communities."
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Trump judicial nominee faces serious opposition and meritless criticism from the ABA

November 25, 2019 | Fox News
"It was — and is — concerning that any senator would think it was appropriate to impose a religious test on a nominee for government service; Article VI of our Constitution expressly forbids such an action. But what’s also gravely concerning now is that supposed champions of diversity and tolerance — and opportunities for women to excel in their careers — would seek to bar Pitlyk from public service simply because she may not subscribe to their ideology."
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Sarah Palin: What the Media Didn’t Say

November 19, 2019 | Townhall
"When the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate appeared recently on Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk, the media came like a moth to a flame. But they honed in on one specific part of her interview: the state of her marriage. They missed – or ignored – a very important part of the conversation."
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Do Religion and Morality Still Belong in Our Society?

November 13, 2019 | Townhall (with Dr. James Dobson)
"The First Amendment was never intended to stamp out religious expression…it was designed to protect it. Statements by political leaders that acknowledge God or champion religious freedom do not constitute an 'establishment' of a national religion, nor did similar statements from our founding fathers. The ongoing attempt to distort the First Amendment and use it as a sword against people of faith is abhorrent and must be condemned."
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Why 'Real Champions' Don’t Need to Embrace Unfair Competition

October 24, 2019 | Townhall
"There is a difference between stronger competition and unfair competition. True champions do want the former, which is why top athletes express regret when an opponent is out due to injury…they want to compete against the best. But true champions also want fair competition."
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Gender Identity and Children

October 18, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"The transgender movement is advancing an agenda that is putting children in harm's way, and parents are often helpless to stop it. More specifically, parental rights are being sacrificed on the altar of the new orthodoxy regarding human sexuality and gender."
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Kanye, LeBron, And Beto Can Teach Us A Lot About The First Amendment

October 17, 2019 | Daily Caller
"Kanye is right. It’s time to tolerate free thought. King James is allowed to shut up and dribble, if that’s what he wants to do. And Beto, well, Beto is dead wrong."
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What the Supreme Court and a Funeral Home Can Teach Us About Civics

October 9, 2019 | Townhall
"The issues presented in Harris Funeral Homes are serious. But the question before the Court is simple. It is simple because we have three branches of government with three distinct roles. The legislative branch asks what the law should be, and makes the law. The executive branch asks what the law is, and enforces the law. The judicial branch asks what the law means, and applies the law. Notwithstanding the apparent confusion in our current political workings, those are the designated roles."
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Merriam-Webster welcomes "they" into the nonbinary crowd

September 25, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"Merriam-Webster has declared that the word "they" can now be "used to refer to a single person whose gender identity is nonbinary." In other words, according to America's foremost repository of language, two's company, three's a crowd, but "they" can now travel solo."
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Socialism Demands Surrender of Freedom and Offers Government Orthodoxy in Return

September 24, 2019 | Townhall
"Socialism is not just – or even primarily – an economic matter. History demonstrates that economic freedom is directly tied to other freedoms and benefits. As offered by Kay Cole James, the president of the Heritage Foundation, these include "greater individual freedom, better health, more educational options, and a cleaner environment." In contrast, a government that "knows best" when it comes to economics will soon assert its superiority when it comes to education, parenting, religious doctrine, and even human sexuality."
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A Revival of Free Speech (and True Tolerance)

September 17, 2019 | Townhall
"On Monday, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled in favor of Phoenix artists Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski of Brush & Nib Studio, holding that the Arizona Constitution’s Free Speech Clause does what it purports to do; namely, it 'ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered.'"
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Socialism Offers 'Free' Entitlements, if You Are Willing to Pay for Them

September 16, 2019 | Townhall
"Socialism will cure the ills of society, or so the story goes. Medicare for all, free education and cancellation of student debt, job guarantees, and even a universal basic income… all these entitlements and more are advocated by proponents of socialism in America today. These breathless promises bring to mind old high school pep rallies where a candidate for student body president promises free lunches, less homework, and a winning football team. It sounds good in theory, but there is a cost involved."
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Socialism Offers 'Security' of State Control But Demands Surrender of Individual Responsibility

September 14, 2019 | Townhall
"These silver-tongued promises are the (seemingly) sunny side of socialism. But they depend on – and eventually succumb to – the dark side of socialism, as set forth by its founding father, Karl Marx. Socialism (a term often used interchangeably with its close relative, communism) seeks the elimination of private ownership in favor of “social ownership” or state control."
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Boys in Girls’ Locker Rooms…What Could Go Wrong?

September 12, 2019 | Townhall
"Does the embrace of tolerance require the surrender of bodily privacy? More to the point, must our middle school-age girls disrobe in the presence of biological males in order to sufficiently demonstrate a commitment to the new orthodoxy?"
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Boys in Girls Locker Rooms? This School Board Might Allow It

September 6, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"Our public schools have a responsibility to protect the privacy, safety, and dignity of all students. But increasingly, government officials are being pressured to extend special privileges to a few, while eliminating commonsense protections for all."
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Trump Administration Takes Action on Behalf of Nurse Forced to Assist in Abortion

August 29, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"Abortion ends the life of an unborn child. It irrevocably alters the lives of the baby's mother and father. And it wounds those who participate—whether willingly or unwillingly."
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Freedom of Conscience Matters for All Americans

August 27, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"The freedoms of expression and conscience belong to the conservative and the progressive, for the person of faith and the atheist, regardless of whether they fall in line with approved government orthodoxy."
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Horrific Shootings are the Symptom...the Heart is the Cause

August 14, 2019 | Dr. James Dobson Family Institute
"These are complicated matters, and any soundbite solution being offered is neither serious enough nor substantive enough. This is not a time to posture on television. We need our politicians to prioritize results over reelection. Lives hang in the balance."
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A third Jack Phillips lawsuit demonstrates that persistence can be virtue or vice

July 23, 2019 | The Denver Post
"Persistence can be a virtue or a vice. After all, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. But, as the saying goes, doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is … well, let’s just say it’s not a recipe for success."
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What The Persecution Of Jack Phillips Teaches Us About 'Tolerance'

August 20, 2018 | The Daily Wire
"Granted, Colorado might have its share of citizens with an affinity for devil’s food cake and pot, but where are we as a society when activists request custom cakes featuring Satan licking a sex toy? Business owners are being harassed with outlandish requests, and the government is concerned about the actions of the business owners."
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Colorado, end your crusade against Masterpiece Cakeshop

August 17, 2018 | The Hill
"Given present circumstances, I can’t help but wonder if Colorado state officials were at that very moment huddled in their offices in downtown Denver, chanting, “We’ve got a target on your back, Jack!” It’s certainly not as catchy, but it would seem to accurately reflect the state’s unrelenting fixation on one man. Yet this obsession is proving to be problematic."
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Tolerance And Respect Are Two Separate Concepts

June 6, 2018 | The Daily Wire
"On June 4, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its ruling in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. While the ink was still drying on the decision, some pundits and advocates lined up to declare that the 7-2 victory for Jack Phillips and Masterpiece Cakeshop is little more than a guidebook for a future defeat."
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First Amendment paves the road to tolerance in Masterpiece case

June 4, 2018 | The Hill
"This nation stands at the proverbial fork in the road. One path will lead us closer to a society controlled by hostility — one in which those who hold the dominant view in society will use government as a weapon to punish individuals who fail to adopt the prevailing orthodoxy. The other path will move us toward a truly tolerant society — one with room for individuals who believe, speak, and act differently, and one in which government preserves the individual rights of all."
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Pro-Life Centers Have Free Speech, Too

March 19, 2018 | The Wall Street Journal
"Pro-life pregnancy centers provide women with a wholly life-affirming message. Signs promoting subsidized abortion undercut that message and contradict the centers' very reason for existence. As Justice David Souter put it in the Boston parade case, such a law requires the centers to 'affirm in one breath that which they deny in the next,' rendering free-speech protections 'empty.'"
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Supreme Court must act to protect free speech on subject of abortion

March 19, 2018 | The Hill
"Abortion is a matter of public concern, and the California law forces pro-life pregnancy centers to deliver the state's ideological message despite (in fact, because of) their profound disagreement with that message."
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If speech is violence at Georgetown, then is stealing a virtue?

February 13, 2018 | Washington Examiner
"Last fall, a conservative student group at Georgetown University faced expulsion from campus and the removal of funding because it promoted a Catholic view of human sexuality. After much hoopla, the group — Love Saxa –— was allowed to remain on campus and retain its eligibility for funding. But, as the saying goes, if you can't beat them, rob them."
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What if March for Life participants were forced to advertise for Planned Parenthood?

January 18, 2018 | The Hill
"[I]n an almost-comical-were-it-not-so-maniacal display of chutzpah, the notoriously pro-abortion California legislature passed the poorly named 'Reproductive FACT Act,' a law which actually requires pro-life pregnancy centers to advertise for the abortion industry. That's not a typo."
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Making an Impact through Supreme Court Advocacy

December 19, 2017 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"A recent report by Adam Feldman on Empirical SCOTUS reveals that, by the grace of God, ADF has not only been blessed with great success at the Court, but with great success in bringing cases before that Court. Since 2013, ADF Vice President of U.S. Litigation David Cortman was the 5th most successful attorney in the country in achieving cert grants for our clients."
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In 'Masterpiece' case, the Supreme Court will decide what tolerance requires

December 9, 2017 | The Hill
"This week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. In the coming months, the justices will grapple with the question of what tolerance demands in a free society. And their conclusion could profoundly impact the freedoms of expression, conscience, and belief, not just for cake artist Jack Phillips, but for our society."
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Cake artist Jack Phillips deserves First Amendment protection

December 4, 2017 | Denver Post
"Like any artist, Phillips is driven by a passion to create beauty and is guided by his technical expertise, acquired over decades, with the tools of his trade. He's not an inattentive operator of a cake conveyer belt assembly line. Nor is he — in the words of a legal brief signed onto by
33 family policy organizations — like 'a gumball machine that mechanically dispenses a product when payment is inserted.' Rather, Phillips invests his 'mind and imagination in the expression of ideas.'"

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Freedom of expression is a right the Supreme Court must uphold

November 28, 2017 | The Hill
"If the Court rules that Jack must abandon his artistic expression and conscience in order to pursue his craft, then we all will face a profound loss — the removal of freedom of expression and freedom of conscience from the public square. That possibility should chill us to the core."
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Supreme Court to Decide if FACT Act Hacks Away at First Amendment

November 16, 2017 | National Review
"California lawmakers made their position on abortion abundantly clear when they passed a law called the "Reproductive FACT Act." The law, which took effect in January 2016, targets pro-life pregnancy-care centers. Let's be clear, no speculation or inference regarding the law's intent is necessary; the state admitted targeting centers that "discourage" abortion. And they do so brazenly."
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Artists shouldn't need to choose between their conscience and their craft

November 10, 2017 | The Hill
"It's no secret that the court's ruling has the potential to make a profound and lasting impact on society. Multiple sources have referred to the case as one of the most important religious liberty cases in decades. The court's decision, as I've written previously, could shape a generation's understanding of the First Amendment and the specific freedoms that it guarantees for all Americans."
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Religious freedom has won some key battles recently

November 10, 2017 | Washington Examiner
"Normally, the confirmation of a judge and the existence of a religious student group at a Catholic university would hardly seem worthy of breaking the internet, what with the latest Hollywood scandals and the Kardashians to keep up with. But Barrett and Love Saxa brought Catholic doctrine to the forefront — albeit with assists from Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Georgetown student Jasmin Ouseph."
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Georgetown University Threatens Student Group For Upholding Catholic Teachings

October 27, 2017 | Federalist
"Sifting through the allegations leveled in the complaint and editorial, Love Saxa's offense becomes abundantly clear. The group holds views that are unapologetically consistent with Catholic doctrine. Specifically, Love Saxa agrees with the Catholic Church that sex belongs within the context of a marriage relationship, and that marriage is the union of one man and one woman."
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It's entirely possible to support both artistic freedom and same-sex marriage

October 25, 2017 | The Hill
"Jack's case is not just — or even primarily — about same-sex marriage . . . the legal principle at issue before the U.S. Supreme Court is something far grander: whether the government may coerce individuals to create custom art that violates their conscience. And the high court's ruling has the potential to impact not just Jack and his artistic expression, but creative professionals across the country, from all walks of life."
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How ADF Is Advocating for Religious Freedom at the U.S. Supreme Court

October 18, 2017 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Alliance Defending Freedom has long been a presence at the United States Supreme Court. Since its launch in 1994, ADF has played a role in more than 50 victories at the high court. While its initial involvement was primarily limited to strategy and funding, ADF has increasingly cemented itself as a Supreme Court advocate in recent years. In the last seven years alone, ADF has won seven victories at the Supreme Court protecting religious freedom."
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Bakers should be allowed to have their cake — and their freedom

October 13, 2017 | The Hill
"Artistic expression has long been protected by the First Amendment—an uncontroversial proposition that is well established in the Supreme Court's case law. Equally plain is the compelled speech doctrine, which establishes that expressive and artistic freedom includes "the choice of what not to say." Taken together, this means that the government cannot compel artistic expression. Unfortunately for Jack, that's exactly what the government did to him."
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Court put state law above First Amendment in wedding video case

September 27, 2017 | Minneapolis Star Tribune
"The court said the First Amendment prohibits the government from forcing Carl and Angel to express messages they don't want to express. Then the court said the Minnesota law 'incidentally' forced Carl and Angel to express messages they don't want to express. Then the court said that compulsion didn't matter. And just like that, a state nondiscrimination law was elevated above the First Amendment."
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Why 'Fairness for All' legislation actually produces more discrimination

September 14, 2017 | Federalist
"Proponents of 'Fairness for All' legislation claim to desire a tolerant society, but true tolerance means respecting every person's viewpoints and beliefs, even those with whom they disagree. It also means respecting constitutionally guaranteed freedoms and refusing to empower the government to demand that Americans sacrifice our national birthright. Freedom of conscience is not a token to be surrendered as the price of citizenship in a free society; it is the mark of citizenship and the fruit of a free society."
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Christian artists should have the same free speech game as Colin Kaepernick

August 30, 2017 | Federalist
"NFL teams are free to sign Kaepernick, not sign him, or offer him a discount on season tickets. Those who don't agree with Kaepernick's views are free to cheer his current unemployment, wave a flag, or whistle the national anthem all the way home. Fans of Kaepernick are free to fly to New York and protest outside the NFL, burn a flag, and decry the injustice of it all. And yes, two bars in Chicago are absolutely free to pursue a new demographic by playing Lifetime movies on Sunday afternoons. It's the beauty of America. The beauty of freedom of speech and conscience. And yes, the beauty of learning to co-exist with people who think differently than you."
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LGBT ideology could cost a 72-year-old florist everything

August 9, 2017 | Daily Caller
"[T]hose who oppose Barronelle's artistic and expressive freedoms justify their position with a crisp and cutting narrative (peppered by nonsensical references to the "right side of history"). They claim she is anti-gay, a bigot who "discriminated against [a] gay couple" by refusing to serve them. They use this narrative not because it is true (far from it), but because they believe it to be effective."
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After barring geologist from Grand Canyon because he's a Christian, Park Service relents

June 30, 2017 | Federalist
"Geologists love rocks. They collect rocks, study rocks, and buy hats that say 'I Love Rocks.' I imagine a disproportionate number of geologists have purchased some sort of paraphernalia at the Hard Rock Café—you get the idea. So if you want to start a quarrel with a geologist, you take away his rocks. If you want to crush him, you take away his access to some of the best rocks in the world—the ones in the sizeable hole known as the Grand Canyon."
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No swing vote on playground case

June 27, 2017 | Washington Examiner
"Despite the title of the old bestseller, I don't know if it's true that we learn everything we need to know in kindergarten. But with regard to religious freedom, we certainly have learned a great deal from a preschool playground."
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U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether government can be the Cake Boss

June 26, 2017 | Denver Post
"If the Supreme Court rules against Phillips, his business' very existence will be in doubt. Abandoning a core part of one's business is hardly a recipe for success. A loss could mean not only that Phillips would be forced to close the doors of his family business, but also that we risk closing the doors on what it means to be a truly free society."
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Kentucky ct. upholds constitutionally protected freedoms for all: Will others follow suit?

May 15, 2017 | CNS News
"When business owners exercise their freedom of conscience by taking a popular stand, they are applauded, and society at large celebrates the triumph of free expression and the principled exercise of conscience. But when—like Blaine—business owners seek to exercise their freedom of conscience in a way that is not in line with approved government orthodoxy, they are frequently cast as bigots in need of forced 're-education' or punishment. They are told that they must sacrifice either their livelihood or their conscience."
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Lumberjacks in Northern Arizona sure are touchy these days

May 8, 2017 | Campus Reform
"Professors . . . should be protectors of academic freedom and dialogue on campus, not active impediments to it. But increasingly, only one viewpoint is welcome on campus."
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Executive Order on Religious Freedom is a Beginning, Not an End

May 4, 2017 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"After months of speculation, a leaked draft order, a temporary deferral, and further speculation, President Trump has signed an executive order to 'vigorously enforce Federal law's robust protections for religious freedom.' But while it's a good first step to securing religious freedom, it leaves many issues unsolved."
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Supreme Court considers whether government officials need to play fair on religion

April 23, 2017 | St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer is a case involving a little playground at a little preschool in Columbia, Mo. But, as is often the case, little things mean a lot. Indeed, the outcome could determine whether the government can exclude some groups from neutrally available public benefits solely because they are religious."
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Is it okay to ban nonprofits from tax-funded programs solely because they're religious?

April 19, 2017 | Federalist
"If you've spent much time at playgrounds—and as a father of four, I have—you'll agree it is hardly the setting for theological instruction or any other 'essentially religious endeavor.' Granted, there might be a sprinkling of 'Do unto others' lectures, amongst the admonitions to 'Stop throwing sand,' 'Don't put that in your mouth,' and the accompanying, 'Spit that out!' But debates regarding the relative merits of Calvinism and Arminianism are incredibly rare, even on the most spiritual of slides and monkey bars. And I have yet to see a turn on the teeter totter devolve into a discussion on eternal security."
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Religious discrimination case goes to SCOTUS: Will religious nonprofits be treated fairly?

April 18, 2017 | CNS News
"Trinity Lutheran Church is going before the Supreme Court for one reason: It wants Missouri to play fair on the playground. Missouri is going before the Supreme Court for one reason: Its problematic implementation of the Missouri Scrap Tire Grant Program."
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The Supreme Court goes to the playground

March 22, 2017 | Washington Examiner
"On April 19, this nation's most respected legal minds will focus their collective energy on a playground in Missouri. The outcome of the case — Trinity Lutheran Church v. Pauley — could determine whether the government can exclude religious nonprofits from public benefits solely because they are religious, which is why scholars such as Harvard Law School professor Noah Feldman are calling the case 'one for the history books.'"
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USDA threatens to shut down farm for conservative article in break room

March 10, 2017 | Federalist
"Maybe it's just nostalgia talking, but the slaughtering, processing, packaging, and distribution of animals used to be so much simpler."
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Executive order or not . . . freedom's future is still up for grabs

February 7, 2017 | Medium
"But no president can unwind years of a federal bureaucracy's overreach in a day. No president can — nor should be able to — control the actions of state and local governments. And no president can alone set freedom's future on a proper course by eliminating restrictive speech codes and hostility toward faith and conscience found on university campuses."
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With New SCOTUS Nominee Judge Gorsuch, a Look at ADF's Past and Future at the Supreme Court

February 1, 2017 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"During the 2015-16 term alone, the Court heard three ADF-supported cases. And since 2014, ADF has been a part of seven victories at the Supreme Court, bringing our total to 49 wins in only 23 years."
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Supporters of Religious Freedom Must Act, Not Simply Resolve to Act

January 16, 2017 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"So let's educate ourselves on the state of religious freedom in America. Let's share what we learn within our circles of influence. And when those around us say that religious freedom isn't a necessary component of a diverse society, let's be prepared to explain why it is absolutely essential."
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The War On Wedding Vendors Is Ultimately A War On Free Thought

November 3, 2016 | The Federalist
"To forbid people from articulating beliefs and peacefully acting consistently with those beliefs is, at its core, an attempt to forbid the beliefs themselves."
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Civil Discourse, and Why My Friend Sent Me a "Dear John"

October 24, 2016 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"In short, we are witnessing – on a national stage – what increasingly is occurring on a regional, local, and personal level. It is the abandonment of what we used to call 'tolerance.'"
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How The Government Should Punish Colin Kaepernick's Anti-Patriotism

October 12, 2016 | The Federalist
"At first glance, subjecting someone to fines of up to $912,500 over the course of a year might sound severe. But it's a small price to pay for a society of utopian tolerance, in which no one is forced to encounter words and acts they don't like. There's only one problem...."
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SOGI Laws: A Subversive Response to a Nonexistent Problem

September 28, 2016 | The Public Discourse
"Now is not the time for proponents of religious freedom to partner with proponents of sexual orientation and gender identity legislation in hopes of catching a few crumbs of liberty that fall from the table."
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When 'Liberty' Forces 18 Girls Into a Single-Stall Shower Room

September 9, 2016 | Daily Signal
"And the wisdom of the New Regime 2.0 goes like this: The march toward true liberty requires 18 girls to squeeze into a prison cell-sized changing space or abandon their bodily privacy, and their right to safety and comfort in the most intimate and vulnerable of settings."
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The DOJ Is Concerned with Your Civil Bathroom Rights… If You Identify As the Opposite Sex

May 9, 2016 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Basing bathroom and locker room use on subjective gender identity will functionally eliminate sex-specific bathrooms, which in turn will compromise privacy and safety for all. And make no mistake, what happens in North Carolina will not stay there; this is 'no longer just a North Carolina issue,' as Governor Pat McCrory stated in a Sunday interview with Fox News. If the federal government is allowed to pull funding from any state that does not comply with the DOJ's inaccurate and arbitrary interpretation of federal law, then it will swiftly compel the capitulation of every state."
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Disney's Religious Liberty Hypocrisy Exposed

April 11, 2016 | The Daily Signal
"If Disney wants to throw its weight around in the political realm, it ought to at least base its opinions on a true story. Instead, Disney embraced the "creative process," concocted a story about the bill, and proceeded to bellow with outrage. As with Pocahontas, however, the ascertainable truth contradicts Disney's sensationalized reboot."
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Christian Professional Seeking Job: An Open Application

January 11, 2016 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"It's true, I don't have more than 98 years experience in fields ranging from cake design to firefighting. I've never been employed as a college professor, and HGTV has shown no interest in my renovation skills. But the scenarios described above are all too real, and these brave men and women have been fired, punished, silenced, fined, or otherwise attacked because they sought to live authentic lives consistent with their religious beliefs. Read more about their stories."
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Planned Parenthood Doesn't Matter…But These Nine Things Do

January 5, 2016 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Planned Parenthood does NOT matter. It's just the name on the sign outside the doors. And whatever the sign says, growing numbers of men, women, and children—who recognize the value of every life—will not stop until those doors are closed."
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Laws That Demand Conformity in Belief and Action are About Less Tolerance, Not More

November 18, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"And even aside from First Amendment freedom concerns, the councilwoman's response exposes the reality that the freedom to act consistently with your beliefs—a freedom cherished by religious and nonreligious alike—must stand in line behind the government's moving definition of tolerance. And increasingly, that definition means endorsement of the government's approved beliefs rather than the ability to civilly disagree. This is not about denial of essential goods and services. This is about the government forcing citizens to participate in, celebrate, and endorse events with which they disagree."
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Seeing Red … Instead of Seeing Clearly

November 10, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Yesterday morning, the Internet told me that Starbucks hates Christmas. Because they have a red cup. And the red cup doesn't have snowflakes, Christmas trees, or Santa Claus, and it certainly doesn't have the baby Jesus."
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How to Get Suspended If You Work for the Fire Department

October 15, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Chief Cochran had the audacity (my tongue firmly in cheek) to include in his 162-page, self-published book a few short sections concerning sexual morality; specifically, he stated that God created sex for marriage between a man and a woman, and that sex outside this context—including homosexual acts—is contrary to God's will. In other words, Cochran put pen to paper and endorsed the understanding of marriage that has—recent events notwithstanding—endured for millennia. An understanding that is explicit in the Bible, and that is shared by all major religions."
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We Can Disagree About Gun Control, but Let's Agree on One Thing

October 10, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"We can disagree about guns, but let's agree on one thing: the problem begins with what's in the heart, not what's in the hands."
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Planned Parenthood Scandal: Do You Care More about the Facts or the Truth?

August 3, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"We can argue about research and 'tissue' and organs and 'reasonable fees.' These are just facts, and as author Chuck Palahniuk has noted, '[y]ou can spend your whole life building a wall of facts between you and anything real.' Or we can face the truth—the truth that when a woman walks into Planned Parenthood to have an abortion, two lives enter the building. And when she leaves, one life has ended, and the other life will never be the same."
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Can the Government Really Do a Better Job? Why Religious Institutions Should be Tax-Exempt

July 2, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"In contrast to the services provided by layers of government bureaucracy funded by mandatory taxes, nonprofit entities typically must produce results if they are to continue receiving funding from discriminating donors. And, as it turns out, many of the most successful nonprofits were founded on religious principles, and by religious organizations or individuals. In fact, at least 12 of the top 20 largest charities in the U.S., as identified by Forbes, fit this description."
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Marriage no longer matters ... and that's why it matters

June 29, 2015 | The Hill
"Friday's 5-4 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court redefined marriage by the slimmest of majorities. And in a critical portion of the opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy effectively reduced marriage to the equivalent of a Lifeline Medical Alert: 'Marriage responds to the universal fear that a lonely person might call out only to find no one there. It offers the hope of companionship and understanding and assurance that while both still live there will be someone to care for the other.'"
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Indiana Abandons Religious Freedom, as Arkansas Moves to Protect It

April 9, 2015 | Alliance Defending Freedom
"Many who are speaking out against RFRAs lack a fundamental understanding of their purpose. They also tend to oppose the law simply because they oppose the particular beliefs of some who would benefit from such a law. But religious freedom and rights of conscience should matter to all people. When religious freedom and rights of conscience are valued and protected, everyone benefits."
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Elane Photography v. Willock: Brief of Wedding Photographers as Amicus Curiae in Support of Petitioner

December 13, 2013 | United States Supreme Court
Even more fundamentally, photojournalists are not merely conduits for the messages they are paid to capture through their lens. Rather, they are the creators of those messages, and the artistic choices they make regarding their photographs influence not only the power, but also the meaning of the message conveyed. A photographer’s work should not, therefore, lose its First Amendment protection merely because a client is willing to pay to have the photographer create the messages.
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Just Shoot Me: Public Accommodation Anti-Discrimination Laws Take Aim at First Amendment Freedom of Speech

April 1, 2011 | Vanderbilt Law Review
This publication examines the limits of public accommodation anti-discrimination laws as they pertain to private businesses. Part I explores the origins and development of public accommodation laws, paying close attention to their original purpose as compared to their contemporary implementation. It also reviews the development of First Amendment jurisprudence and the protection the Supreme Court has provided for speech. Part II demonstrates the failure of some courts to properly analyze cases involving expressive conduct by a private business that falls within the bounds of First Amendment protection. Part III concludes that public accommodation laws violate the First Amendment when they compel expression by private businesses, such as Elane Photography. To remedy this constitutional violation, Part III first proposes that legislatures more carefully delineate the reach of—and groups covered by—public accommodation laws. Second, it urges courts to apply more consistently the Supreme Court's standard for expressive activity and look to Hurley v. Irish American Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Group of Boston for guidance in balancing governmental interests against First Amendment protections.
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