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Christian Action League: A Trusted Resource

Christian Life and Public Affairs Committee of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina
July 3, 2015

CLPAThe Christian Life and Public Affairs Committee of the Baptist State Convention encourages pastors and church leaders to make an intentional effort to read, pray and engage in matters of public policy in their communities.

Many communities across our state are wrestling with any number of matters that impact families, schools and sometimes even churches. Christians should not shy away from speaking into these debates and entering the public conversation.

Keeping up with the items on the agenda for a town council, county school board or county commissioners is often a straightforward process. Read the rest of this entry »

‘Choose Life’ License Plate Gets New Life

By Hunter Hines
Christian Action League
July 3, 2015

ChooseLifeWASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Supreme Court has given new life to North Carolina’s ‘Choose Life’ specialty license plate.

The plate, which was approved by the North Carolina General Assembly (2011), was prohibited from being issued in a ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina (2012), and was upheld by a three judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit (2015). On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the lower court decision and ordered that the 4th Circuit reconsider the case in light of the High Court’s decision in a similar case, Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans.

In the Walker case, SCOTUS ruled that Texas had the right to issue or not issue a license plate on the basis of whether it promoted a state interest because the license plates constituted government speech. More specifically, in Walker, Texas could decline to issue plates bearing a confederate flag because it contradicted the state’s public policy. Read the rest of this entry »

Supreme Court Says States Must Recognize Gay Marriage

By Michael Gryboski
Christian Post
June 26, 2015

SCOTUSWASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Supreme Court struck down four state constitutional amendments defining marriage as between one man and one woman in a landmark decision.

After years of refusing to take up the matter, the highest court in the land ruled 5-4 Friday in Obergefell v. Hodges that state-level gay marriage bans are unconstitutional, concluding that 14th Amendment requires a state to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority opinion, reversing the ruling in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals that ruled such bans constitutional.

Chief Justice John Roberts was one of the dissenting judges, along with Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito. Read the rest of this entry »

Republicans Will Not Entertain Sweepstakes Legislation

By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
June 26, 2015

GamblingRALEIGH – Last week, as well as the first of this week, the Christian Action League informed its supporters that certain Republicans were aggressively seeking to bring up sweepstakes gambling legislation for consideration. Wednesday, Republicans caucused on the issue and decided against it.

Sweepstakes gaming essentially replaced video poker machines, which were banned in 2006. Hundreds of Sweepstakes parlors and cafes could be found in cities large and small throughout the state. Inside patrons would pay money for chances to win a prize by playing a casino-style game on a computer terminal that operated similar to a slot machine. Read the rest of this entry »

Sunday Hunting Ban Repealed, But with Some Time Prohibitions that Respect Houses of Worship

By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
June 26, 2015

Sunday HuntingRALEIGH – Wednesday, the North Carolina Senate took the final step to approve legislation that repeals a 145-year-old ban on Sunday hunting with firearms. The Senate passed HB 640 – Outdoor Heritage Act by a 33-15 vote.

Dr. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League said in a statement released to the press that the Christian Action League opposed HB 640 from its inception, but he said the bill that passed was still something of a partial victory for the League’s efforts.

“Although the measure does allow Sunday hunting with a firearm,” he said, “it respects our churches, more specifically the rural churches it most likely affects, by prohibiting Sunday hunting from the hours of 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.” He added that, “[m]ost rural churches typically start at around 9:45 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. and are finished by 12:00 noon. Read the rest of this entry »

URGENT ACTION ALERT, Rumor Has it Some NC House Members Serious About Reviving Sweepstakes Gambling: Senate Budget Proposal Expands Lottery Advertising and Introduces ‘E-Instant Games’

Contact members of the NC House immediately!
By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
June 19, 2015

GamblingRALEIGH – The rumor mill at the North Carolina General Assembly is saying certain House members are serious about reviving sweepstakes gambling. Republicans intend to caucus on the issue Tuesday of next week. Meanwhile, the Senate has included a provision in its proposed budget that would authorize a 50% increase in lottery advertising and introduce the sale of E-Instant lottery tickets online.

North Carolina banned sweepstakes gambling in 2007 and tweaked the ban in 2010. Only last month, the US Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina struck an agreement with 5 sweepstakes companies not to prosecute them for their illegal activities, if they would no longer provide software to sweepstakes establishments in the state, and, if they ceased all activities by July 1, 2015. Last week, the State Supreme Court upheld the enforcement of the state’s ban on the sweepstakes industry, essentially killing it. Read the rest of this entry »

Southern Baptists Take Strong Stands on Biblical Morality

Convention approves resolutions addressing racism, marriage, religious liberty, abortion – leaders speak out with authority
By Pam Blume
Christian Action League
June 19, 2015

SBCCOLUMBUS – With the Supreme Court ruling on same sex marriage expected at any time and after months of racial unrest across the nation, the issues of biblical morality, religious liberty, and racial reconciliation dominated the sermons and business proceedings of the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC). The 5,400 messengers (representatives from Southern Baptist churches) met in Columbus, Ohio, June 16 and 17.

The business sessions of the convention deal in part with resolutions presented for the consideration of the messengers. This year the majority of resolutions dealt with pressing social and ethical issues and were passed by close to unanimous votes.

A resolution on racial reconciliation stated that, “…Racism is sin because it disregards the image of God in all people and denies the truth of the Gospel that believers are all one in Him;” and that Southern Baptists …”grieve over the continued presence of racism and the recent escalation of racial tension in our nation. …” The resolution further called on Southern Baptists “…to be faithful ambassadors of reconciliation in their personal relationships and local communities,” and to work toward achieving racial and ethnic diversity in church membership and leadership roles. Read the rest of this entry »

U.S. Supreme Court Will Not Review N.C. Ultrasound Law: Measure Suffers Final Defeat

By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
June 19, 2015

UltraSoungWASHINGTON, D.C. – Monday, the United States Supreme Court decided not to review a North Carolina law that would have required abortion doctors to perform an ultrasound, then display and describe the images to women seeking to end their pregnancies.

The law which passed the North Carolina General Assembly (NCGA) as a part of the Woman’s Right to Know Act in 2011 was vetoed by then Governor Beverly Perdue. The NCGA overrode the Governor’s veto. Still, the provision would face a lawsuit on behalf of several physicians, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation, Planned Parenthood, and the law firm of O’Melveny & Myers.

In January of 2014, U.S. District Judge Catherine Eagles, struck down the requirement as unconstitutional, ruling that mandating abortion providers have such discussions with patients was too broad and a violation of free speech. Read the rest of this entry »

Religious Liberty Experiences a Revival in North Carolina

By Hunter Hines
Christian Action League
June 12, 2015

Religious LibertyRALEIGH – Thursday, lawmakers in the North Carolina House overrode Gov. Pat McCrory’s veto of SB 2- Magistrates Recusal from Civil Ceremonies by a vote of 69-41. The state Senate overrode the Governor’s veto Monday, June 1st, 32-16.

The new law allows magistrates and registers of deeds to opt-out of the performance of same-sex marriages, if it violates their faith. Magistrates and register of deeds that choose to recuse themselves must agree to perform no civil ceremonies. Recusals are for a minimum of six months and continue until rescinded in writing. Officials choosing not to perform civil ceremonies for sincerely held religious objections will not be subject to disciplinary actions or prosecution.

Although a religious accommodation is afforded public officials, register of deeds are still required to ensure that all qualified applicants for marriage licenses are issued a license. Each chief district court judge is required to ensure that marriages performed by a magistrate are available to be performed at least ten hours per week over at least three business days. Read the rest of this entry »

North Carolina Abortion Rate Drops by 26.3%.

By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
June 12, 2015

Planned ParenthoodAbortions are in decline nationwide by 12%. North Carolina abortion rate has dropped by 26.3%.

That’s what the Associated Press recently stated in its annual abortion report. According to the AP, the decline is based on figures taken from 45 states during 2010 – 2014. The data coincides with an increase in state laws across the country that tightened restrictions on abortions within the same time period.

A statement from North Carolina Right to Life noted: “We have no doubt that the pro-life legislation passed by the North Carolina General Assembly in recent years has been saving lives in our state. Even mainstream news coverage of the abortion decline has attributed much of it to lifesaving legislation, particularly noting that those states whose legislatures have passed more protective laws have seen bigger drops in their abortion rates since 2010. In 2013, North Carolina reported 8,000 fewer abortions than in 2010.” Read the rest of this entry »