Florida Governor Rick Scott is expected to sign a bill allowing students and others to offer “inspirational messages” at public-school events. State law already allows students to engage in two minutes of silent prayer or meditation at the beginning of the school day, but S.B. 98, passed March 1 by the state legislature, would broaden the religious landscape at schools, allowing students to make short inspirational speeches or offer prayers at non-compulsory school events.
President Terry O’Neil (left) of the National Organization of Women announced on March 1: “The bishops have not been able to convince Catholic women to not take birth control. We know this because 98 percent of sexually active [Catholic] women take birth control at some point in their lives — just like 98 percent of sexually active non-Catholic women take birth control at some point in their lives. So the bishops have failed and the evangelical preachers that don’t want their women to take birth control — they have failed.”
The state of Texas finds itself in a battle with the Obama administration over its decision to defund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s premier abortion provider. “At the direction of lawmakers and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott,” reported the Texas Tribune, “the Texas Health and Human Services commissioner signed a rule [February 23] that formally bans Planned Parenthood clinics and other ‘affiliates of abortion providers’” from participating in the Texas Women’s Health Program (WHP), which provides a variety of health services to low-income women throughout the state, including “family planning.” Planned Parenthood had confirmed that it was providing some 40 percent of the services offered through WHP.
Saying "Mexican" rather than "Hispanic," asserting that the majority of welfare recipients are black, or suggesting that most terrorists are of Muslim descent are remarks often characterized as racist or derogatory. But associating Catholics with pedophiles and referring to communion as a "barbaric ritual" is, apparently, politically correct, at least, according to some standards.
Two prominent so-called ethicists sparked a wave of outrage after arguing in a prominent journal that killing babies after birth should be permissible, claiming newborns should not be considered “persons” and citing the widespread legalized slaughter of pre-born children as justification.
An Indiana state legislator is facing ridicule for his refusal to sign on to a resolution honoring the Girls Scouts on its 100th anniversary, citing the organization’s promotion of abortion, homosexuality, and a liberal agenda destructive of traditional family values.
New York City churches meeting in the city’s schools have won a major victory over the board of education, as a judge ruled that all congregations impacted by her injunction barring the city from evicting churches are covered by the verdict — and not just the main congregation named in the suit. Moreover, U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska (left) ruled on February 24 that the churches can continue meeting in the schools as the case moves through the courts, instead of just for the next week — unless the city succeeds in getting a higher court to overrule her decision.
While Christians around the world await news regarding the fate of Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani — a convert from Islam to Christianity whom the government of Iran has sentenced to death for his “apostasy” — influential former Democrat Senator Gary Hart (left) has penned an editorial for HuffingtonPost.com claiming the Nadarkhani case is a warning of the dangers of orthodox Christianity.
Today marks the 40th anniversary of the infamous Shanghai Communiqué, the joint diplomatic agreement between the United States and the People's Republic of China issued during President Richard Nixon's visit to Communist China in 1972. In the document, the two nations pledged to work toward "normalization" of their economic and cultural relations. They further agreed that neither country would "seek hegemony in the Asian-Pacific region."
On February 28, 1972, the United States also acknowledged the "One China Policy," and agreed to cut back on its military bases on Taiwan (the Republic of China or "Free China").
With the devaluation of traditional marriage over the past couple of decades has come an alarming increase in the number of children growing up in homes without fathers, and an increasingly casual attitude about childrearing. A recent study from Child Trends, a non-profit research group that identifies emerging trends in child development, found that as of 2010, 41 percent of all births in America occur outside of marriage. That compares to about 11 percent in 1970 and around 30 percent in 1990.