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Gallup polls reveal record high support for gay marriage and abortion in US

The American left appears to be winning the culture wars as new opinion polls released by Gallup this week show record high support for gay marriage and the moral acceptability of abortion.

The survey results reflect how Americans are quickly reaching a consensus view on same-sex marriage since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized it in the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges decision, but remain sharply divided by political affiliation on the life issue.

On the gay marriage issue, 70% of Americans now say that marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized by the law as valid, with the same rights as traditional marriages. This is the highest amount of support shown for same-sex marriage since Gallup began polling the issue in 1996. Since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized the practice in 2015, overall support for it has increased by about 10%.

Notably, for the first time a majority of Republicans (55%) say they support same-sex marriage, which lines up with recent trends in the party. Former Republican President Donald Trump was the first person elected to that office who openly supported gay marriage before becoming president. Trump’s ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, an openly gay man, spearheaded an initiative in 2019 to decriminalize homosexuality globally. In the last year of his administration, Trump named Grenell acting director of national intelligence, making him the first president to appoint an openly gay person to a Cabinet-level position.

“Once opponents of legalization, Republicans have mostly come to back it. Court and legislative challenges to the legal status of same-sex marriage have simmered down since the Supreme Court issued its decision,” Justin McCarthy wrote for Gallup.

The abortion issue remains sharply divisive, but a record high of 47% of Americans now say it is morally acceptable, compared to 46% who believe killing unborn children in the womb is morally wrong.

Democrats and political independents are most likely to say abortion is morally acceptable: 64% of Democrats, 51% of independents and 26% of Republicans currently subscribe to that view.

The survey found that Americans are nearly evenly divided over whether they identify as “pro-life” (47%) or “pro-choice” (49%). Unsurprisingly, Republicans strongly identify as pro-life (74%) while Democrats say they are pro-choice (70%). A majority of independents (53%) say they are pro-choice.

By gender, most women continue to identify as pro-choice (52%) while men are more likely to say they are pro-life (50%). Americans between ages 18 and 54 lean pro-choice while older Americans lean pro-life.

A very small minority of Americans (19%) believe abortion should be “illegal in all circumstances.” A plurality of those surveyed (48%) favor restrictions on abortion but 32% say abortion should be legal “under any circumstances.”

“The nearly one-third of U.S. adults who support fully legal abortions is the highest such percentage since the early to mid-1990s, when it was consistently at that level,” Megan Brenan noted for Gallup.

These changing attitudes show how the battlefields of the culture wars are shifting. While there are ongoing legal challenges to abortion and the Supreme Court is set to consider a case that could result in the first major rollback of abortion rights since Roe v. Wade, Republicans have largely given up fighting same-sex marriage and are moving on to fight Big Tech censorship, critical race theory, and transgender ideology in schools and sports.

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Catholic priests vow to defy teaching on same-sex marriage, denounce Pope Francis: ‘Deeply appalling’

A group of Catholic priests announced Tuesday they would not abide by guidance from the Vatican that says priests cannot bless same-sex couples.

What is the background?

Controversy erupted Monday when the Vatican published guidance reaffirming what has been the Christian teaching on sexual ethics for the entire existence of the Christian church: Same-sex relationships violate God’s ideal vision for marriage and human sexual expression.

Therefore, the Vatican advised, priests cannot bless such unions.

[I]t is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (i.e., outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex. The presence in such relationships of positive elements, which are in themselves to be valued and appreciated, cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing, since the positive elements exist within the context of a union not ordered to the Creator’s plan.

The guidance was widely panned because Pope Francis is seen the “woke pope.”

As pope, Francis has placed great emphasis on social justice and care for the vulnerable. Such positions — although considered “liberal” by many in the West today — are central to the Christian faith, and have been since the ministry of Jesus.

What did the priests say?

The Parish Priests Initiative — a dissident group of Catholic priests — essentially expressed dismay that Catholic teaching on sexual ethics will not conform to the standards of the secular world.

“We members of the Parish Priests Initiative are deeply appalled by the new Roman decree that seeks to prohibit the blessing of same-sex loving couples. This is a relapse into times that we had hoped to have overcome with Pope Francis,” the group said in a statement, Reuters reported.

“We will — in solidarity with so many — not reject any loving couple in the future who ask to celebrate God’s blessing, which they experience every day, also in a worship service,” the statement added.

Founded in 2006, the PPI has voiced opposition to several key Catholic teachings, including celibacy among priests and forbidding women from becoming ordained.

The group, which reportedly has about 350 priests among its membership in addition to thousands of lay supporters, also supports giving communion to divorced persons and Protestants.

What does Jesus say?

When confronted by scribes and Bible teachers about divorce, Jesus grounded his teaching about marriage — and sexuality overall — in the Genesis creation narrative.

Matthew 19:3-6 (NIV) says:

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

Christian marriage, then, is meant to reflect the unique “oneness” of humanity — one male and one female covenantally uniting — just as God eternally exists as multiple persons in a unique, inseparable, and unified relationship (Christian doctrine refers to this as the “Trinity”).

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Webster’s Dictionary updates word definition after Democrats attack Barrett for saying ‘sexual preference’

Webster’s Dictionary updated the definition of “preference” on Tuesday to include what liberals now claim as a fact: that the word, when used in relation to sex, is “offensive” to LGBT individuals.

What’s the background?

Democrats launched a new attack against Amy Coney Barrett during her Senate confirmation hearing Tuesday because she uttered the phrase “sexual preference” in the context of gay marriage.

Although the term is used widely by Democrats, progressives, and LGBT individuals, Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) scolded Barrett for using the phrase to suggest that Barrett, who is a devout Christian, would support reversing gay marriage rights.

“Let me make clear, ‘sexual preference’ is an offensive and outdated term,” Hirono said. “It is used by the anti-LGBTQ activists to suggest that sexual orientation is a choice. It is not. Sexual orientation is a key part of a person’s identity. … So if it is your view that sexual orientation is merely a ‘preference,’ as you noted, then the LGBTQ community should be rightly concerned whether you will uphold their constitutional right to marry.”

What did Webster’s Dictionary do?

After Democrats attacked Barrett for using the phrase, Webster’s Dictionary literally updated the definition of “preference” to include what Democrats now claim: that it is “offensive” when used in the context of sex.

Prior to the supposed outrage, Webster’s Dictionary listed the fifth definition under “preference” to link to the term “sexual preference,” the universally used phrase to refer to those with whom a person chooses to have sex.

Now, the definition has been updated to claim the word is “offensive.” In fact, Webster’s Dictionary claims the phrase is “widely” believed to be considered offensive, despite the fact that it was not listed as offensive until after Barrett used it.

“The term preference as used to refer to sexual orientation is widely considered offensive in its implied suggestion that a person can choose who they are sexually or romantically attracted to,” Webster’s Dictionary claims.

Hirono’s statement — that “sexual orientation is a key part of a person’s identity” and, therefore, is not a choice — is not backed by science.

In fact, there is no scientific evidence proving that genetic code concretely determines the people with whom someone engages in sex.

Still, Barrett, being ever so polite, apologized for using the phrase.

“I certainly didn’t mean and would never mean to use a term that would cause any offense to the LGBTQ community,” Barrett told Hirono. “So, if I did, I greatly apologize for that. I simply meant to be referring to Obergefell‘s ruling with respect to same-sex marriage.”

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Justices Thomas, Alito stoke liberal fear by suggesting SCOTUS gay marriage ruling could be overturned

Conservative Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito on Monday excoriated the high court’s 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges decision — which uniformly mandated that all states recognize same-sex marriages — characterizing it as an assault on religious liberty and suggesting that the ruling could be overturned in short order.

What did they say?

“In Obergefell v. Hodges … the Court read a right to same-sex marriage into the Fourteenth Amendment, even though that right is found nowhere in the text,” Thomas wrote in a scathing statement, joined by Alito. “Obergefell enables courts and governments to brand religious adherents who believe that marriage is between one man and one woman as bigots … in other words, [it] was read to suggest that being a public official with traditional Christian values was legally tantamount to invidious discrimination toward homosexuals.”

Thomas wrote the court’s denial to hear an appeal from former Kentucky County Clerk Kim Davis, who was sued after objecting to issuing same-sex marriage licenses in the state.

Even in denying to hear Davis’ case, however, Thomas made sure to note that her petition “provides a stark reminder of the consequences of Obergefell.” Consequences that he said were “created” by the court and that “only [the court] can fix.”

“Until then,” — that is, presumably, until the case is overturned by the court — “Obergefell will continue to have ‘ruinous consequences for religious liberty,'” Thomas concluded.

Why does it matter?

The sharp words were especially notable given the Supreme Court’s conservative transformation over the last four years.

Time noted in its report that “with Ginsburg’s death and the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy in 2018, only three members of the majority in the gay marriage case remain: Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.”

Kennedy, a moderate, was replaced by Justice Brett Kavanaugh and President Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett to fill Ginsburg’s position.

Should Barrett be confirmed, it would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the court. It would likely be a true majority, too, even as Chief Justice John Roberts, who is traditionally regarded as a conservative justice, has shown a tendency at times to play the middle since Kennedy’s retirement.

Liberals were outraged

In response to the statement, LGBT rights groups and others expressed outrage and concern.

Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David said, “These comments made clear that the war on marriage equality, against the lives of same-sex couples, is alive and well” even as the court “hangs in the balance.”

Jim Obergefell, a lead plaintiff in the 2015 case, said, “It is unthinkable that Alito, Thomas and others on the Supreme Court would want to take away that right and the dignity that comes along with it.”

“It is alarming that there are justices on the Supreme Court who want to overrule Obergefell, which is a precedent the court has reaffirmed, and which hundreds of thousands of couples have relied to seal their unions in matrimony,” Yale Law School professor William Eskridge added.

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Abortion Black Lives Matter Chloe clark First Amendment gay marriage Intelwars Iowa Iowa State University

Iowa State prof forbids students to disagree with BLM, abortion. University takes action.

Iowa State University administrators took action this week after an English teacher forbade her students to disagree with abortion, gay marriage, and the Black Lives Matter movement.

What happened?

Students who signed up for ISU assistant professor Chloe Clark’s English 250 class for the fall semester learned in their syllabus that they would be “dismissed” from class if they argued against “gay marriage, abortion, Black Lives Matter.”

The syllabus stated:

GIANT WARNING: any instances of othering that you participate in intentionally (racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, sorophobia, transphobia, classism, mocking of mental health issues, body shaming, etc) in class are grounds for dismissal from the classroom. The same goes for any papers/projects: you cannot choose any topic that takes at its base that one side doesn’t deserve the same basic human rights as you do (ie: no arguments against gay marriage, abortion, Black Lives Matter, etc). I take this seriously.

Further, Clark wrote in the syllabus that her class will discuss books that “may contain violent or disturbing imagery” and offered to provide students with a “trigger warning.”

“If, at any point, you would like a Trigger Warning before viewings/readings that may contain this imagery, please let me know and I’m happy to provide them!” she wrote

Clark’s syllabus generated attention after a concerned student leaked the document to Young Americans for Freedom, a conservative student advocacy organization.

How did the university respond?

The university acknowledged the syllabus is inconsistent with students’ First Amendment rights and has been updated.

Further, the university said Clark is undergoing constitutional education.

Here’s the complete statement, according to YAF:

The syllabus statement as written was inconsistent with the university’s standards and its commitment to the First Amendment rights of students. After reviewing this issue with the faculty member, the syllabus has been corrected to ensure it is consistent with university policy. Moreover, the faculty member is being provided additional information regarding the First Amendment policies of the university.

Iowa State is firmly committed to protecting the First Amendment rights of its students, faculty, and staff. With respect to student expression in the classroom, including the completion of assignments, the university does not take disciplinary action against students based on the content or viewpoints expressed in their speech.

Clark has been an assistant professor in the English department at ISU since last August, according to her LinkedIn page. She previously worked there as a lecturer.

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Adoption foster care gay marriage Intelwars Religious discrimination religious freedom SCOTUS Supreme Court

SCOTUS takes up case over Philadelphia’s move to exclude Catholic ministry from foster program over marriage views

In a list of orders issued Monday morning, the Supreme Court announced that it would take up the case that asks whether a Catholic organization can be excluded from Philadelphia’s foster care program because of its views on marriage and morality.

The case in question deals with the city of Philadelphia’s 2018 decision to end its foster program contract with Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The reason? In accordance with Catholic teaching on marriage and the family, the organization would not place children with same-sex couples, which violated the city’s nondiscrimination policy.

In response, the city stopped referring children to CSS. In turn, CSS took the matter to court claiming that the city’s decision had violated its religious liberty rights.

In April 2019, the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against CSS, saying, “The City’s non-discrimination policy is a neutral, generally applicable law, and the religious views of CSS do not entitle it to an exception from that policy.”

“CSS has been serving Philadelphia foster children for more than a century,” the ministry’s petition to be heard by the Supreme Court says. “But its foster care services are being shut down by the City of Philadelphia because the City disagrees with the Archdiocese about marriage. As a Catholic agency, CSS cannot provide written endorsements for same-sex couples which contradict its religious teachings on marriage.”

The petition also notes that the ministry’s beliefs haven’t stopped anyone from getting into a foster home, arguing that “Philadelphia has a diverse array of foster agencies, and not a single same-sex couple approached CSS about becoming a foster parent between its opening in 1917 and the start of this case in 2018”

In addition to Catholic Social Services, the case is also being brought by Philadelphia foster mothers Sharonell Fulton and Toni Simms-Busch. Fulton has fostered more than 40 children over the course of 25 years and Simms-Busch recently adopted the kids she fostered through CSS, according to case briefing materials from the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which is representing the petitioners in the case.

“Both mothers chose CSS because the agency shares their most deeply held values and beliefs, and both have relied heavily on CSS’s support during their foster care journey,” a Monday news release said.

Lori Windham, senior counsel at Becket, said in statement that she was “relieved to hear that the Supreme Court will weigh in on faith-based adoption and foster care” and that “over the last few years, agencies have been closing their doors across the country, and all the while children are pouring into the system.”

In a twitter thread following the court’s order, Windham said this is the first such adoption or foster care case to get all the way to the Supreme court, as “most agencies shut down before the case reaches this level.”

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Pete Buttigieg takes a swipe at President Trump and the Stormy Daniels affair in defense of his gay marriage

Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg took a swipe at President Donald Trump and the Stormy Daniels affair during a CNN town hall event on Tuesday.

The former South Bend, Ind., mayor was being interviewed by CNN’s Erin Burnett about a critique made against him by right-wing radio talk icon Rush Limbaugh.

“The idea of the likes of Rush Limbaugh or Donald Trump lecturing anybody on family values, I mean,” he responded.

“I’m sorry but one thing about my marriage is, it’s never involved me to send hush money to a porn star after cheating on my spouse with him, or her,” he added.

“So, they want to debate family values, let’s debate family values, I’m ready!” he concluded to applause from the audience.

During another part of the town hall, Burnett asked Buttigieg if he believed it was impossible to be a Christian and support Trump.

“Well I’m not gonna tell other Christians how to be Christian. I cannot find any compatibility between the way this president conducts himself and anything I find in scripture,” responded Buttigieg.

“Now I guess that’s my interpretation but I think that’s a lot of people’s interpretation, and that interpretation deserves a voice!” he concluded to loud applause from the audience.

Here’s the video of Buttigieg’s comments:



www.youtube.com

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Students walk out of classes to protest Catholic high school allegedly forcing two gay teachers to resign

A gay proposal at Disneyland has led to teacher resignations and angry student protests at a Catholic high school near Seattle, Washington.

English teacher Paul Danforth and his partner Sean Nyberg got engaged at Disneyland in November, and Danforth resigned soon after from Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien, Washington.

Soccer coach Michelle Beattie also got engaged to her same sex partner and resigned.

The school says that they both voluntarily resigned, but Nyberg claims otherwise.

Nyberg said that Danforth was “no longer employed specifically because he and I got engaged,” according to a statement he gave to CBS News.

“This is not only personally painful, it also harms former students who looked up to them,” he added.

Students who are supportive of the gay teachers staged a sit-in and walked out in protest on Tuesday.

Another protest was planned against the Archdiocese of Seattle, which had not yet commented on the matter.

Family Policy Institute of Washington executive director Mark Miloscia defended the school.

“Especially what we believe is a constitutional right to hire the teachers and employees to go teach their children the beliefs and practices that are dear to their faith,” Miloscia said.

Both of the gay teachers have hired an attorney, but CBS News noted that it was unclear what legal action they could take against the school or the archdiocese.

Here’s more about the LGBT protest:



www.youtube.com

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Pete Buttigieg slams Rush Limbaugh for being ‘lectured on family values’ over gay marriage

Democratic presidential contender Pete Buttigieg fired back at Rush Limbaugh on Sunday in response to comments the conservative radio host made about the possibility of a gay president.

While speaking on his radio show last week, Limbaugh said that “America’s still not ready to elect a gay guy kissing his husband on the debate stage president.”

Limbaugh added:

They’re looking at Mayor Pete, 37-year-old gay guy, mayor of South Bend, loves to kiss his husband on the debate stage. And they’re saying, OK, how’s this going to look, 37-year-old gay guy kissing his husband on stage next to Mr. Man Donald Trump? What’s going to happen there?

Buttigieg, who is married to a man, responded to Limbaugh’s comments during an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“I love my husband. I’m faithful to my husband. Onstage we usually just go for a hug. I love him very much. I’m not going to take lectures on family values from the likes of Rush Limbaugh,” Buttigieg said.

Buttigieg doubled down on his response during a subsequent interview on “Fox News Sunday.”

“I’m not going to be lectured on family values from the likes of Rush Limbaugh or anybody who supports Donald J. Trump as the moral as well as political leader of the United States,” Buttigieg said.

“America has moved on and we should have politics of belonging that welcomes everybody. That’s what the American people are for. And I am saddened for what the Republican Party has become if they embrace that kind of homophobic rhetoric,” he added.

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