November 6, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) voted Monday to advance a bill to ban workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, supporting the measure after intense backroom talks that spilled into open view. Toomey, one of seven Republicans to back the bill, waited and negotiated as the bill stood at 59 votes - on the brink of clearing a key procedural hurdle. He voted in favor of it immediately after it received the 60th vote it needed. He then cast the 61st vote vote in favor of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)
June 15, 2012 |
Ever since Mayor Nutter's ban on feeding homeless people on Benjamin Franklin Parkway went into effect June 1, I've been worried about Violet Little. After all, she's been nourishing the Parkway's homeless for two years. But her meals are heartier than chunky chili or cheesy ziti. I fret that her mission might be at risk. A Lutheran minister, Little is pastor of the Welcome Church, which she founded as "a church without walls," since no bricks or mortar shelter its inhabitants.
June 1, 2012
Christine Flowers hits a new low, even by her abysmal standards, in her column laughably titled "Christian Soldiers Fight Birth-Control Dictum. " Despite her intentions, Ms. Flowers has not remotely provided a coherent argument for the Catholic lawsuits challenging requirements in the Affordable Care Act. Ms. Flowers rightly says, "Some of us thought this had already been settled when the administration caved to public outrage, saying...
May 25, 2012 |
Finally, my church spoke truth to power, and fired a legal — and most likely lethal — shot against an oppressive, unconstitutional requirement that Catholics be forced to subsidize sin. True, not everyone thinks that artificial birth control is sinful, and that would include about the 98% of Catholic women who use it. But it's one thing to say that you as an individual disagree with a fundamental church principle, and quite another...
February 22, 2012 |
PITTSBURGH - A college in Western Pennsylvania sued the federal government Tuesday, saying regulations that require employers to offer birth-control coverage that includes drugs that abort fertilized embryos are "directly at odds" with its religious values, including the Sixth Commandment. The Alliance Defense Fund filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court on behalf of Geneva College. The school in Beaver Falls is associated with the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America.
February 17, 2012 |
Those bitter clingers to religion continue to frustrate President Obama. Having decreed that faith-based organizations must violate their religious tenets by providing health insurance for abortion and sterilization, he seems surprised by the resulting uproar. Like Dian Fossey watching gorillas in the mist, Obama appears to be adjusting his pith helmet, peering through his binoculars, and wondering why the primates are agitated - and how he can stop their insufferable screeching about moral principles and religious freedom.
February 13, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Conservatives said Sunday that the flap surrounding President Obama's birth control mandate was far from over, with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell saying he would push to overturn the requirement because it was another example of government meddling. While a senior White House official shrugged off such remarks, declaring the issue resolved and new legislation unlikely, the rhetoric from Republicans suggested the GOP would try to keep the debate alive in an election year to rally conservatives and seize on voter frustration with big government.
February 18, 2009
PRESIDENT OBAMA speaks the language of faith fluently, but he also understands the Constitution. During the campaign, he promised to keep the line between church and state clean. But when Obama signed an executive order to create his administration's version of an Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, all hell broke loose - at least among some civil libertarians. They charged that Obama had broken a campaign vow to prevent taxpayer-funded religious organizations from discrimination in hiring.
July 10, 2008
NEARLY EVERY misgiving about the Bush administration's signature "faith-based initiative" turned out to be prophetic: The program did indeed allow federal dollars to support religious discrimination in employment and in the provision of social services. Faith-based organizations did use government money to proselytize. Federal grants were targeted for their political usefulness to congressional Republicans. And religious organizations vying for a few thousand dollars in grants did in fact lower the volume of their moral critique of the government.
May 17, 2006
I'VE BEEN reading a lot about religious organizations being upset regarding the film of "The Da Vinci Code. " While I understand that many religious people feel they are defending their religious beliefs by speaking out, I wonder when they are going to realize that all they end up doing is giving this film (and others like it, past and future) untold free publicity. They will surely create a segment of the population who will see the movie simply because it's being branded as controversial.