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Wisconsin Town Tries to Force Churches to Push LGBT Agenda

City officials in De Pere, Wisconsin, adopted a “non-discrimination” ordinance that demanded protection on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) for housing, employment, advertising, and public accommodations with no exemption for religious organizations and designated churches as “places of public accommodation.” By doing this, city officials were trying to force places of worship to bow to the LGBT agenda.

Fortunately, five churches and a radio broadcaster in the area responded with a lawsuit, and Brown County Judge William Atkinson sided with the churches by exempting religious institutions.

“This court victory came just in time for these churches who have treaded cautiously under the burden of this government orthodoxy,” said attorney Kevin Snider of Pacific Justice Institute that represented the plaintiffs. “Our clients and the many other religious institutions in De Pere can fulfill their religious functions and ministries this Christmas season, without fear of being brought before a tribunal due to their hiring choices or refusal to host same-sex marriages on church property.”

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Major Church Organizations Compromise on LGBT Agenda With ‘Fairness for All’

Both the boards of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) and the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) have been seeking a way to build a bridge between sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) protections and religious liberty.

Their answer is “Fairness for All,” legislation that is based on the so-called Utah Compromise, a SOGI law with religious exemptions that Utah enacted in 2015. In essence, a proposal following the Utah model would grant protected status to individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity, in the same fashion as that currently provided on the basis of sex, race, religion, and national origin. In turn, it would provide a very narrow exemption for churches and Christian schools, but not for persons in the secular marketplace.

As Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, explains, “Placing sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes in this kind of legislation would have harmful unintended consequences, and make the situation worse in this country, both in terms of religious freedom and in terms of finding ways for Americans who disagree to work together for the common good.”

Moore is one of the signers of Breakpoint’s “Preserve Freedom, Reject Coercion” petition that provides a counter response to those who support the “Fairness for All” approach. It concludes as follows, “We therefore believe that proposed SOGI laws, including those narrowly crafted, threaten fundamental freedoms, and any ostensible protections for religious liberty appended to such laws are inherently inadequate and unstable.”

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Teacher Fired for Calling a Student by the Wrong Pronoun

Peter Vlaming, a French teacher at a Virginia high school, was fired after a unanimous vote by the West Point School Board for “misgendering” a gender-confused female student who self-identified as a male. Misgendering is a term used by the Left that means refusing to call a “transgender” by his or her “preferred pronoun.”

Vlaming noted that his position is based on his Christian beliefs. “I’m happy to avoid female pronouns not to offend because I’m not here to provoke, but I can’t refer to a female as a male, and a male as a female in good conscience and faith,” Vlaming said. To try to accommodate the student, Vlaming agreed to use the student’s new, male name, but, apparently, that was not enough.

According to the school board, Vlaming had violated the school’s harassment and non-discrimination policies. West Point schools Superintendent Laura Abel explained, “Mr. Vlaming was recommended for termination due to his insubordination and repeated refusal to comply with directives made to him by multiple WPPS administrators.”

Yet if you dig a little deeper into those “directives,” the school has no specific policy concerning pronoun use.

Sympathizing with Vlaming, Rod Dreher of The American Conservative calls this example of the LGBT agenda the “new normal.”

In contrast to school officials who are towing the politically correct line, a group of students staged a peaceful walkout to show solidarity for their teacher less than 24 hours after his firing. “I think he really was going with what he believed was right and it’s really unfair that he’s being punished for that, especially in such a dramatic way,” said Wyatt Pedersen, one of the protesting students.

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Trump Reverses Obama Regulations on Employer-Mandated Abortion Coverage

On Wednesday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced it is doing away with rules and regulations adopted by President Obama’s administration that effectively created a mandate under Obamacare requiring small businesses, religious organizations, and nonprofits to offer no-cost birth control and other abortifacients to their employees even if these employers had a religious objection.

The new rules and regulations, which provide an exemption for both religious and moral convictions, do not apply to government employers or publicly traded businesses.

The rules take effect 60 days after their publication in the Federal Register. HHS noted that these new rules and regulations should affect approximately 200 employers.

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SCOTUS to Hear Establishment Clause Arguments over World War I Cross Memorial

The U.S. Supreme Court is going to hear a case over a cross that stands in a government-owned field in Bladensburg, Md., that commemorates those who lost their lives in World War I.

In The American Legion et al. v. American Humanist Association et al., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled in favor of the American Humanist Association stating that the Peace Cross war memorial erected by an American Legion post in 1925 violated the First Amendment’s establishment clause.

If the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the appellate court’s decision, then religiously inscribed tombstones at Arlington National Cemetry, which lies within the same appellate court district, could also come under fire as well as other similarly religious monuments across the nation.

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