Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Bowdoin College bans Christian student groups on campus

From the radically leftist New York Times. (H/T Nancy P.)

Excerpt:

For 40 years, evangelicals at Bowdoin College have gathered periodically to study the Bible together, to pray and to worship. They are a tiny minority on the liberal arts college campus, but they have been a part of the school’s community, gathering in the chapel, the dining center, the dorms.

After this summer, the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship will no longer be recognized by the college. Already, the college has disabled the electronic key cards of the group’s longtime volunteer advisers.

In a collision between religious freedom and antidiscrimination policies, the student group, and its advisers, have refused to agree to the college’s demand that any student, regardless of his or her religious beliefs, should be able to run for election as a leader of any group, including the Christian association.

Similar conflicts are playing out on a handful of campuses around the country, driven by the universities’ desire to rid their campuses of bias, particularly against gay men and lesbians, but also, in the eyes of evangelicals, fueled by a discomfort in academia with conservative forms of Christianity. The universities have been emboldened to regulate religious groups by a Supreme Court ruling in 2010 that found it was constitutional for a public law school in California to deny recognition to a Christian student group that excluded gays.

At Cal State, the nation’s largest university system with nearly 450,000 students on 23 campuses, the chancellor is preparing this summer to withdraw official recognition from evangelical groups that are refusing to pledge not to discriminate on the basis of religion in the selection of their leaders. And at Vanderbilt, more than a dozen groups, most of them evangelical but one of them Catholic, have already lost their official standing over the same issue; one Christian group balked after a university official asked the students to cut the words “personal commitment to Jesus Christ” from their list of qualifications for leadership.

[...]The evangelical groups say they, too, welcome anyone to participate in their activities, including gay men and lesbians, as well as nonbelievers, seekers and adherents of other faiths. But they insist that, in choosing leaders, who often oversee Bible study and prayer services, it is only reasonable that they be allowed to require some basic Christian faith — in most cases, an explicit agreement that Jesus was divine and rose from the dead, and often an implicit expectation that unmarried student leaders, gay or straight, will abstain from sex.

“It would compromise our ability to be who we are as Christians if we can’t hold our leaders to some sort of doctrinal standard,” said Zackary Suhr, 23, who has just graduated from Bowdoin, where he was a leader of the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship.

The consequences for evangelical groups that refuse to agree to the nondiscrimination policies, and therefore lose their official standing, vary by campus. The students can still meet informally on campus, but in most cases their groups lose access to student activity fee money as well as first claim to low-cost or free university spaces for meetings and worship; they also lose access to standard on-campus recruiting tools, such as activities fairs and bulletin boards, and may lose the right to use the universities’ names.

Not sure how you are supposed to have a Christian student group, if the leaders don’t accept the authority of the Bible. But maybe that’s a feature, not a bug, from the point of view of these secular administrators and their allies in the judiciary. The really sad thing about this is that Christian taxpayers are paying these secular authorities to curtail their basic rights. It’s only open season on Bible-believing Christians.

Filed under: News, , , , , , ,

Maine demands that pro-marriage group reveal donor names

ABC News reports.

Excerpt:

Maine’s ethics panel fined a national anti-gay marriage group more than $50,000 on Wednesday and ordered it to reveal the donors who backed its efforts to repeal the state’s gay marriage law.

The Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices found that the National Organization for Marriage violated campaign finance laws by failing to properly register as a ballot question committee and file financial reports in the 2009 referendum that struck down gay marriage. Same-sex unions were legalized by voters in 2012.

The commission also ruled that the organization must file a campaign finance report, which would force it to disclose the names of its donors. The National Organization for Marriage has fought for years to keep its donor list secret, saying doing so would put its contributors at risk for harassment and intimidation.

[...]“We didn’t create a scheme, we tried to follow the law,” Brian Brown, president of the Washington, D.C.-based organization, told the four-member panel on Wednesday.

Brown, who served as executive director of the National Organization for Marriage in 2009, was one of three members of the committee that led the Stand for Marriage Maine PAC.

Commissioners said his dual role and the fact that the national group controlled a majority of the PAC’s funds was problematic for its argument that the funds weren’t raised to influence the Maine campaign.

The group says that it’s being targeted because of its stance on gay marriage and that groups on the other side of the issue — such as the Human Rights Campaign — followed the same guidelines.

State investigators said that its examination of the National Organization for Marriage actions was brought by a specific complaint and that the organization could have sought a similar investigation into the Human Rights Campaign.

John Eastman, a National Organization for Marriage lawyer, said that it intends to file a complaint against HRC in addition to filing an appeal.

The Human Rights Campaign mentioned in the article called the Family Research Council a “hate group”. The FRC was the target of an act of domestic terrorism by a gay activist who also thought that the Family Research Council was a “hate group”. The Human Rights Campaign was also implicated in the IRS leak of NOM donors.

What will gay activists do with the list of donor names? Ask Brendan Eich what they will do with it.

Filed under: News, , , , , , ,

Republicans introduce national right-to-work legislation

Sen. James Demint

From the Hill.

Excerpt:

Eight Republican Senators introduced a bill Tuesday giving workers a choice as to whether to join labor unions, which they argue will boost the nation’s economy and provide an increase in wages.

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), introduced the National Right to Work Act to “reduce workplace discrimination by protecting the free choice of individuals to form, join, or assist labor organizations, or to refrain from such activities,” according to a statement.

Seven other Republicans signed onto the effort: Sens. Tom Coburn (Okla.), Orrin Hatch (Utah), Mike Lee (Utah), Rand Paul (Ky.), James Risch (Idaho), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and David Vitter (La.).

“Facing a steady decline in membership, unions have turned to strong-arm political tactics to make forced unionization the default position of every American worker, even if they don’t want it,” Hatch said. “This is simply unacceptable. At the very least, it should be the policy of the U.S. government to ensure that no employee will be forced to join a union in order to get or keep their job.

“Republicans cited a recent poll they said shows that 80 percent of union members support having their policy and that “Right to Work” states outperform “forced-union” states in factors that affect worker well being.

From 2000 to 2008, about 4.7 million Americans moved from forced-union to right to work states and a recent study found that there is “a very strong and highly statistically significant relationship between right-to-work laws and economic growth,” and that from 1977 to 2007, right-to-work states experienced a 23 percent faster growth in per capita income than states with forced unionization.

“To see the negative impacts of forced unionization, look no further than the struggling businesses in states whose laws allow it,” Vitter said. “It can’t be a coincidence that right-to-work states have on balance grown in population over the last 10 years, arguably at the expense of heavy union-favoring states.”

DeMint blamed the problems faced by U.S. automakers on the unions.

“Forced-unionism helped lead to GM and Chrysler’s near bankruptcy and their requests for government bailouts as they struggled to compete in a global marketplace,” he said. “When American businesses suffer because of these anti-worker laws, jobs and investment are driven overseas.”

If you want to attract businesses, then you need to have pro-business laws. That’s where jobs come from – businesses.

Here’s an article about states who are trying to pass these laws to attract more employers.

Excerpt:

Currently 14 states beyond Indiana and Wisconsin are considering legislation that would limit union benefits and/or collective bargaining power. They are: Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington (state) and West Virginia. In any number of these states, supporters have planned or held rallies against the measures. But public support might be less than deep. According to a Rasmussen Poll conducted late last week and released Monday, 48 percent of likely U.S. voters sided with Wisconsin Governor Walker whereas only 38 percent sided with his union opponents; the other 14 percent were undecided. And 50 percent of the respondents favored reducing their home state’s government payroll by one percent a year for 10 years either by reducing the work force or reducing their pay. Only 28 percent opposed such action.

This is how we are going to turn the recession around. Cut off the spending on left-wing special interests – NPR, PBS, ACORN, Planned Parenthood, Unions. They all will have to pay their own way, just like the grown-ups do.

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Gay rights activist convicted of manslaughter

Story from CBS News.

Excerpt:

Bruce LaVallee-Davidson, an outspoken gay rights activist who publicly fought for gay marriage, has been convicted of manslaughter in a bizarre sex game accident that included drugs and guns.

[...]Police say that the shooting occurred while a third man, James Pombriant, was engaged in a sex act with Wilson in the dungeon-like basement of Wilson’s Colonial home in a middle-class neighborhood two blocks from the ocean.

[...]The case had garnered publicity because LaVallee-Davidson is a outspoken advocate for same-sex rights and was in a committed relationship when he testified in favor of keeping Maine’s now-overturned gay marriage law at a public hearing, four days after the discovery of the body of 50-year-old Wilson and a couple of weeks before he was indicted.

LaVallee-Davidson faces up to 30 years in prison. Pombriant was not charged in the killing.

My previous post on why people favor traditional marriage.

Comments will be strictly monitored in order to take Obama’s hate crimes law into account.

Related posts

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A social conservative’s evaluation of Tuesday’s election results

New York

First, social conservatives lost the special election in New York’s 23rd district.

Excerpt:

Doug Hoffman, the upstart third-party Conservative candidate for the special election in New York’s 23rd congressional district, conceded defeat to Democrat Bill Owens early Wednesday morning.

The final tally showed Owens beating out Hoffman by 4,000 votes, 49 percent to 45 percent. On social issues, Owens has identified himself as “pro-choice” regarding abortion, but on marriage, he indicated that he favored President Obama’s position: against same-sex “marriage,” but for civil unions.

[...]While polls on the eve of election-day showed Hoffman having pulled ahead by at least five points, Scozzafava’s weekend endorsement of Owens after the implosion of her own campaign, which had the blessing of national GOP leaders, may have proved the game-changer.

Scozzafava has close ties to the labor unions – her husband is a labor organizer – and channeled that on-the-ground support into Owens campaign. The Albany Times Union reports that powerful New York unions poured in hundreds of thousands of dollars to oppose Hoffman.

That’s a lost seat in the House of Representatives. And labor unions opposed the socially conservative candidate.

Maine

Next, social conservatives won against same-sex marriage in Maine.

Excerpt:

Maine voters handed traditional marriage supporters a major victory Tuesday night after rejecting a same-sex “marriage” law that the state government approved six months ago.

Though signed by Democratic Gov. John Baldacci, the law never went into effect, and remained in limbo after the success of the ballot initiative calling for a people’s vote.

Had the law been upheld, Maine would have been the sixth U.S. state to allow homosexual “marriage,” after Iowa, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

As of early Wednesday, the law was defeated 53% to 47%, despite polling data leading up to the vote showing the race in a dead heat.

[...]Same-sex “marriage” has now lost in all 31 states in which the question has been put to a popular vote.

Traditional marriage is the view that children should be raised by their own mother and father in a stable marriage. Same-sex marriage denies that children should have a right to be raised by a mother and father biologically related to them. See my previous post to understand why people oppose same-sex marriage. And here’s my case for the pro-life position.

Virginia

Social conservatives were elected as governor, lieutenant-governor and attorney general in Virginia.

Excerpt:

Virginia’s state elections saw a sweep for pro-life candidates into the state’s highest offices. Pro-life Republicans captured the offices of governor, lieutenant governor, and attorney general by wide margins.

Pro-life Republican Bob McDonnell handily beat his pro-abortion Democratic opponent Creigh Deeds. Election night returns showed McDonnell cruising to victory, garnering 59 percent of the vote to Deeds’ 41 percent with 99 percent of precincts reporting in.

[...]Pro-life Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, a Republican, also handily won re-election with 57 percent of the vote, to 43 percent for his pro-abortion Democratic challenger Jody Wagner, with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

[...]Pro-life Republican Ken Cuccinelli also beat out his Democratic and pro-abortion challenger Steve Shannon for the office of attorney general, 58 percent to 42 percent with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

[...]“The Virginia Society for Human Life looks forward to working with all three of these stalwart pro-life leaders, as well as pro-life members of the State Senate and House of Delegates, to enact laws that will safeguard the right to life of unborn children and support their mothers, and protect older people and those with disabilities from denial of lifesaving medical treatment, food and water.”

Great news for social conservatives.

New Jersey

A pro-life, pro-family Republican was elected as governor of the strong Democrat state of New Jersey.

Excerpt:

Incumbent Democrat Gov. Jon Corzine conceded defeat last night to pro-life, pro-family Republican Chris Christie in New Jersey’s governor’s race.

Christie fought a hard-won battle against the incumbent Corzine and third-party candidate Chris Daggett, winning 49 percent of the vote. Corzine, whose bid for re-election received huge assistance from President Barack Obama, who personally campaigned for him in New Jersey, came in second with 45 percent of the vote, with Daggett trailing in third with six percent.

resident Obama had attempted to rally support behind Corzine by tapping into the popularity that garnered the President 57 percent of the vote in New Jersey in 2008. However neither Obama’s personal charisma, nor Corzine’s outspending Christie by almost 3-1 – $30 million to $11.5 million – could save the incumbent governor from defeat in an election that mainly turned on the economy and job stagnation, crippling fees and taxes (especially sky-high property taxes), and fiscal irresponsibility in Trenton that has run rampant during Corzine’s tenure.

[...]During the brutal campaign fight, Corzine, who was endorsed by abortion-provider Planned Parenthood, had attacked Christie in ads for the latter’s support of a constitutional amendment banning abortion and his opposition to embryonic stem-cell research.

Corzine is a big proponent of embryonic stem-cell research. However, New Jersey voters, frustrated with the state’s failure to close a $3 billion budget gap, rejected in November 2007 a $450 million ballot initiative to support a project that would have funded embryonic stem-cell research facilities. The setback was a political humiliation for Corzine, who had broken ground for the Christopher Reed Pavilion in October with the words “to the future,” only to have the voters shelve the project a month later.

Christie, on the other hand, received a critical endorsement from New Jersey’s foremost pro-life GOP Congressman Chris Smith. The pro-life leader’s approval for Christie, who admitted at the beginning of his campaign that he used to describe himself as “pro-choice” until the birth of his own children led him to embrace the pro-life position, was followed by the endorsement of New Jersey Right to Life.

[...]Both of Christie’s challengers, Corzine and Daggett, indicated that they would sign a bill legalizing same-sex “marriage” if given the opportunity.

So again, Barack Obama campaigned on behalf of the anti-life, anti-marriage Democrat candidate, but the Republican pro-life, pro-marriage candidate won the election. Social conservatism is as real to me as fiscal conservatism or foreign policy conservatism, so I am overjoyed that social conservatives won elected offices in 3 out of 4 states that voted for Obama, who is anti-life and anti-family.

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