Monday, June 27, 2016

Reaction to today’s ruling striking down Texas abortion clinic law

Today, the United States Supreme Court struck down a Texas law that requires abortion clinic facilities to meet the same standards as other surgical centers. The Thomas More Society filed an amicus brief in the case (see it here), which stated the law is constitutional. 

Thomas More Society attorney Jocelyn Floyd, a former FOT guest, issued this statement in response to the 5-3 ruling in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt: 

“The Supreme Court today overturned a Texas law protecting women’s health because it viewed the law as ‘unnecessary.’ Texas enacted common-sense provisions to protect women at abortion facilities from substandard care, requiring abortion providers to meet the same standards as other similar medical clinics. Here in Illinois, we’ve seen all too well what disastrous consequences come from holding abortion providers to lower standards than other medical providers—contamination, dirty facilities, patient injury, and even death. We’re disappointed that the Supreme Court views vital protection against these consequences as ‘unnecessary’.”   

And Eric Scheidler, Executive Director of the Pro-Life Action League, issued this statement:  

“It is shameful to see a majority of the Supreme Court sacrificing public health and safety to prop up the abortion industry in Texas. If this case were about anything other than abortion, this law would have been upheld. Indeed, it would never have been challenged. Only the abortion industry balks at adhering to the same standards considered routine by legitimate health care providers. 

“How many Kermit Gosnells will it take for public officials to uphold common sense health and safety standards for the abortion industry? In the wake of this irresponsible ruling in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, pro-life activists will be redoubling our efforts to highlight the dangerous conditions at America’s abortion clinics -- like the ambulances we see turning up regularly at abortion clinics around the country -- in hopes that one day the abortion industry will be held accountable for endangering public health.”

This week on FOT: The California Department of Managed Health Care is forcing churches to pay for elective abortions in their health insurance plans.

While the Supreme Court is preventing the closing of abortion clinics in Texas (read), the California Department of Managed Health Care is trying to force churches (yes, churches) and other religious entities to pay for elective abortions (see story).

Casey Mattox
Leading the fight against the state’s efforts is the Alliance Defending Freedom and on Tuesday we’ll have ADF’s Casey Mattox to discuss this issue. Casey serves as senior counsel with ADF and his litigation efforts focus on sanctity of human life issues, including waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer dollars by the abortion industry. Prior to serving with ADF, he litigated for the Christian Legal Society Center for Law & Religious Freedom, as well as the Rutherford Institute, and clerked for Justice Champ Lyons of the Alabama Supreme Court.
Commenting on this issue, Casey said: “The Obama Administration is once again making a mockery of the law, and this time in the most unimaginable way. Churches should never be forced to cover elective abortion in their insurance plans, and for ten years the Weldon Amendment has protected the right to have plans that do not include coverage for abortion-on-demand. But the state of California has ordered every insurer, even those insuring churches, to cover elective abortions in blatant violation of the law.
“The Obama Administration’s refusal to enforce this law continues its pattern of enforcing laws it wants to enforce, refusing to enforce others, and inventing new interpretations of others out of whole cloth. We will continue to defend churches from this clear violation of the First Amendment and federal law and call on Congress to hold the Department of Health and Human Services accountable,” he added.
In addition to Casey, we’ll also be joined by Greg Baker of the Family Leader to discuss its upcoming Fifth Annual Family Leadership Summit Saturday July 9 at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center, featuring speakers including Evangelist Billy Graham’s daughter, Anne Graham Lotz.
Join Deacon Mike Manno and Gina Noll and Casey as they discuss these and other issues of interest to people of faith at 9 a.m. on Iowa Catholic Radio, 1150 AM; 88.5 & 94.5 FM and streaming on IowaCatholicRadio.com. The program will re-air at 9 p.m. and pod casts of our previous programs may be found here.
Faith On Trial is supported by our loyal underwriters and sponsors: Attorney Rick McConville, Coppola, McConville, Coppola, Carroll, Hockenberg & Scalise PC 2100 Westown Parkway, West Des Moines, 515-453-1055; Confluence Brewing Company – off the Bike Trail just south of Grey’s Lake, 1235 Thomas Beck Road where there is live entertainment in the tap room every Thursday, and Rob denHartog, Wealth Management Advisor at Northwestern Mutual Life, NW corner of 128th Street and Hickman Rd, 515-210-4472.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Politics from “The Patriot and the Preacher” – Next FOT

Mark Anthony
This week we’re doing something a little different, we’re hosting a religious broadcaster, Mark Anthony from the syndicated “The Patriot and The Preacher” radio program he hosts with Ben Kinchlow.

The program attempts to reignite the vision of a nation based on traditional spiritual and political values. In it “We believe the average voter is not only disenchanted, but feels powerless to effect true change in our country. Political radio pundits bombard us daily with the problems we face and provide ‘solutions’ that are unrealistic and divisive in nature while religious radio pundits are mocked and essentially marginalized.”
Mark’s program was developed to call our nation back to its spiritual and political foundations, using Biblical truth and the wisdom of our founding fathers, this show seeks to make our nation great, once again.
Mark, a history buff, has been involved in politics for over 15 years as both a volunteer and paid staff for many campaigns and organizations, raising money and creating events for fundraising and messaging purposes. He has also been the campaign manager for two congressional campaigns.
After Mark we will have our monthly visit from Stephanie Crowley with a review of the movie “Me Before You.”
Join Deacon Mike Manno and Gina Noll for another interesting program Tuesday at 9 a.m. on Iowa Catholic Radio, 1150 AM; 88.5 & 94.5 FM and streaming on IowaCatholicRadio.com (where pod casts of previous programs can be found). The program will re-air at 9 p.m.
Faith On Trial is brought to you by our sponsors Attorney Rick McConville, Coppola, McConville, Coppola, Carroll, Hockenberg & Scalise PC 2100 Westown Parkway, West Des Moines, 515-453-1055; Confluence Brewing Company – off the Bike Trail just south of Grey’s Lake, 1235 Thomas Beck Road where there is live entertainment in the tap room every Thursday, and Rob denHartog, Wealth Management Advisor at Northwestern Mutual Life, NW corner of 128th Street and Hickman Rd, 515-210-4472.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Texas judge dismisses misdemeanor criminal charge against undercover Planned Parenthood journalist David Daleiden

Thomas More Society wins dismissal in defense of journalist

HOUSTON – June 14 – Misdemeanor criminal charges against undercover journalist David Daleiden have been dismissed by a Harris County, Texas, court this week. The charges for “unlawfully, intentionally and knowingly offer[ing] to buy human organs, namely, fetal tissue, for valuable consideration,” were brought against Daleiden in response to his investigation exposing Planned Parenthood’s involvement in the sale and trafficking of the body parts of aborted children. Felony charges related to the use of fake identifications in connection with entering the Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast facility in Houston, Texas, are pending before a different branch of the Harris County courts. The Thomas More Society is defending Daleiden in multiple court cases, including the Texas criminal charges, along with numerous lawsuits by the abortion industry.
“The Harris County prosecutors were in such a rush to criminalize David Daleiden that they did not properly obtain grand jury approval of each of the elements of the charged misdemeanor,” said Peter Breen, Thomas More Society Special Counsel. “All charges against Daleiden and his investigators should be dismissed, based on the evidence that Harris County District Attorney’s prosecutors colluded with Planned Parenthood to secure these indictments. Planned Parenthood’s illegitimate aim is clear: it hopes to turn attention away from the abortion industry’s baby parts trafficking, by instead attacking the man who exposed its illegal practices. The Harris County District Attorney’s office should reject that aim and prosecute Planned Parenthood, not David Daleiden and his investigators.”
Read the order dismissing the case for want of jurisdiction here [https://www.thomasmoresociety.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Criminal-charges-dropped.pdf]
About the Thomas More Society
The Thomas More Society is a national not-for-profit law firm dedicated to restoring respect in law for life, family, and religious liberty. Headquartered in Chicago, the Thomas More Society fosters support for these causes by providing high quality pro bono legal services from local trial courts all the way up to the United States Supreme Court. For more information, visit www.thomasmoresociety.org.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Gender dysphoria and transgendered locker rooms: Next FOT

During the past few weeks there has been a lot of discussion about the “rights” of transgendered persons to use the restroom of their choice, the edict from the Obama Administration that would require schools to ignore biological differences between the sexes in making roommate assignments and sports teams’ rosters, and the “rights” of privacy of other students. There has been a lot of criticism, both legal and political; but this week we’re going to take a different tact. We’re going to discuss this matter with a licensed mental health counselor. 
Randy Kiel, M. A.
Randy Kiel, M.A, is the founder of Kardia Counseling.  He is a licensed mental health counselor with a private practice of psychotherapy and counseling in central Iowa.  With more than twenty years of clinical experience, Randy has spent over 40,000 hours sitting with people to learn how to care for them and their needs.  

Tuesday Randy will join Deacon Mike Manno and Gina Noll to discuss this issue and the concept of gender dysphoria, or “gender identity disorder,” the mismatch between body and internal sense of gender.  

So join Deacon Mike and Gina Tuesday at 9 a.m. on Iowa Catholic Radio 1150 AM; 88.5 & 94.5 FM and streaming on IowaCatholicRadio.com. The program will be rebroadcast at 9 p.m. and the podcasts of previous programs can be found on the station’s Faith On Trial page. 

Faith On Trial is brought to you by our loyal sponsors: Attorney Rick McConville, Coppola, McConville, Coppola, Carroll, Hockenberg & Scalise PC 2100 Westown Parkway, West Des Moines, 515-453-1055; Confluence Brewing Company – off the Bike Trail just south of Grey’s Lake, 1235 Thomas Beck Road where there is live entertainment in the tap room every Thursday, and Rob denHartog, Wealth Management Advisor at Northwestern Mutual Life, NW corner of 128th Street and Hickman Rd, 515-210-4472.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

What’s at stake in the election and what is your responsibility?



Joshua Mercer
What is this year’s election all about and what does it mean for people of faith? What is our responsibility as citizens, Christians, and voters? We’ll take up these questions this Tuesday with Joshua Mercer, political director and co-founder of CatholicVote.org. He previously served as Washington Correspondent for the National Catholic Register and Chairman for Students for Life of America. He joined us earlier profiles of the presidential candidates and a discussion of their stands on religious issues before the Iowa Caucuses.

The Donald, Hillary, Bernie … we’ll discuss them all and consider what this election may mean for religious freedom in the United States for the next four years.
In addition we’ll have our monthly visit by our media critic, Todd Erzen.
So join us Tuesday morning at 9 (central) on Iowa Catholic Radio 1150 AM; 88.5 & 94.5 FM
and streaming on IowaCatholicRadio.com. The program will be re-broadcast at 9 p.m. and don’t forget that you can listen to any program you may have missed by following the links on the Faith On Trial page on the station’s web site.
Faith On Trial is on the air courtesy of our loyal sponsors and underwriters: Attorney Rick McConville, Coppola, McConville, Coppola, Carroll, Hockenberg & Scalise PC 2100 Westown Parkway, West Des Moines, 515-453-1055; Confluence Brewing Company – off the Bike Trail just south of Grey’s Lake, 1235 Thomas Beck Road where there is live entertainment in the tap room every Thursday, and Rob denHartog, Wealth Management Advisor at Northwestern Mutual Life, NW corner of 128th Street and Hickman Rd, 515-210-4472.
 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Illinois bill forcing pro-life pregnancy care centers to promote abortion heads to governor’s desk


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A bill that has passed both houses of the Illinois Legislature and that will likely be sent to Gov. Bruce Rauner for his signature would violate federal law and therefore place federal funding, including Medicaid reimbursements, in jeopardy, according to a letter Alliance Defending Freedom sent to Rauner on Friday on behalf of numerous pro-life physicians, pregnancy care centers, and pregnancy care center network organizations. ADF warned legislators about the problems with the bill last year.

The bill, SB 1564, forces medical facilities and physicians who conscientiously object to involvement in abortions to adopt policies that provide women who ask for abortions with a list of providers “they reasonably believe may offer” them. Two federal laws, known as the Coats-Snowe amendment and the Hyde-Weldon amendment, together prohibit states that receive federal funding from forcing pro-life physicians and entities to refer women for abortion or to make arrangements for their referral. Illinois law also prohibits government from placing burdens on religious conscience without a compelling interest for doing so.

“No state can rob women of the right to choose a pro-life doctor by forcing pro-life
Matt Bowman
physicians and entities to make or arrange abortion referrals. That’s what federal law clearly states,” said ADF Senior Counsel Matt Bowman. “The governor would be on firm legal ground to veto this bill because of its collision with federal law and the U.S. Constitution—and because the courts have invalidated similar measures in other states.”

“Alliance Defending Freedom has represented multiple pro-life pregnancy help organizations in federal lawsuits in which we have obtained court orders against laws that attempted to force the pregnancy centers to recite government’s messages,” the ADF letter explains. “Several of the cases specifically struck down the requirement that pregnancy centers tell women certain things about abortion or birth control, or that they give the women information about alternative service providers. See Centro Tepeyac v. Montgomery County…. Alliance Defending Freedom is ready and willing to represent Illinois pro-life pregnancy centers if SB 1564 becomes law.”

The federal Coats-Snowe amendment declares that “any State or local government that receives Federal financial assistance, may not subject any health care entity to discrimination on the basis that” it (1) “refuses to…provide referrals for…abortions,” or it (2) “refuses to make arrangements for any of the activities specified in paragraph (1).”

In addition to protecting “entities,” the Coats-Snowe amendment protects “individual physician[s].” The federal funding that violating the Coats-Snowe amendment jeopardizes “includes” but is not limited to “governmental payments provided as reimbursement for carrying out health-related activities.” Separately, the federal Hyde-Weldon amendment prohibits states that receive certain federal funding from requiring physicians or health care entities to refer for abortions.


Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.