By L.A. Williams, Correspondent
Christian Action League
July 3, 2014
It has been a bittersweet week in the nation’s judicial system, as the Supreme Court struck a blow for freedom of religion in a case against the birth-control mandate, and a federal judge in Kentucky ruled in favor of gay marriage.
“We applaud the decision in the Hobby Lobby case and lament the court’s overreach and trampling of state’s rights in the Kentucky ruling, even as we celebrate the birthday of what is still the greatest nation on earth,” said the Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League.
The High Court ruled five-to-four Monday that corporations can refuse to provide to their employees certain abortifacients on the basis of religious objection. In doing so, it made clear that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act applies to privately owned businesses such as Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods Specialities.
Hobby Lobby had sued the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services two years ago when it became clear that HHS would fine the company millions of dollars for not complying with the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate. The pro-life Green family, who owns the arts and craft supply store, had refused to fund “morning after” and “week after” pills. After a District Court granted Hobby Lobby a preliminary injunction in the case, the federal government appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which agreed to hear the case and entertained oral arguments in March.
Dr. Creech said the Court’s ruling bodes well for a North Carolina case involving Belmont Abbey College, the first institution to sue the Obama administration over the mandate.
College President Bill Thierfelder called the ruling “an especially meaningful victory that sends a clear message to the current administration that our freedom is a God given right and cannot be usurped by any group or individual.”
Meanwhile, the freedom of voters in Kentucky to maintain that state’s one-man/one-woman definition of marriage has been swept aside by a federal judge who ruled that the state’s marriage protection amendment, supported by 75 percent of voters in 2004, violates the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause.
While U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II dismissed out of hand Kentucky’s argument that “traditional marriages contribute to a stable birth rate, which in turn, ensures the state’s long-term economic stability,” researcher Peter Sprigg said there is a clear correlation between the factors mentioned.
“Recent research showed that the bottom six U.S. states in birth rate had all redefined marriage, while none of the top nine states in birth rate had done so,” Sprigg, with the Family Research Center, told Life Site News.
Fortunately Heyburn stayed his ruling as he anticipated an appeal, which is now set to be heard Aug. 6 before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati.
The Kentucky ruling is one of a string of judicial decisions in favor of same-sex marriage.