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Media Advisory: CWA and Pro-Life Groups Rally to Stop Abortion Extremism in Virginia

By | Blog, News and Events, Press Releases, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

Washington, D.C. – Concerned Women for America joins Susan B. Anthony List, The Virginia Family Foundation, Students for Life, and other pro-life organizations in holding a press conference this Saturday, February 2, in Lorton, VIrginia, to oppose Virginia Delegate Kathy Tran’s bill allowing abortions up until the moment of birth. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam (D) has not only failed to disavow the bill but went so far as to say that mothers and physicians can discuss a child’s viability post-birth.

 

WHO:       

Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America,

Denise Cappuccio, Concerned Women for America

Marjorie Dannenfelser, Susan B. Anthony List

Victoria Cobb, The Virginia Family Foundation

Olivia Gans Turner, Virginia Society for Human Life, National Right to Life

Amy McInerny, Diocese of Arlington

Tina Whittington, Students for Life

Amy McInerny, Respect Life for the Catholic Diocese of Arlington

Alison Centofante, Live Action

Janae Stracke, Heritage Action for America

 

WHAT:             Rally to Stop Abortion Extremism in Virginia #ResistInfanticide

 

WHEN:             Saturday, February 2, 12:00 p.m., Noon

 

WHERE:           South County High School

8501 Silverbrook Rd, Lorton, Virginia 22079

Main Entrance

 

Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, said the following:

“Abortion undermines every life. In the United States of America, the beacon of human rights to the world, abortion is giving way to infanticide. Pro-life leaders have been warning about this for decades, and now we’re facing what we always knew would be the reality. Delegate Kathy Tran’s bill, which allows an abortion even as a baby is preparing to come through the birth canal, is unspeakably evil, and Gov. Northam’s commitment to stand by it is unforgivable.”

 

The Inequality of the “Equality Act”

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On Monday the Heritage Foundation hosted a panel discussion titled, “The Inequality of the Equality Act: Concerns from the Left” where four self-described liberal feminists, including an openly gay woman and one man who formerly identified as transgender, detailed their concerns over transgender activism.  The left is pushing special, elevated, civil rights-type protections for gender identity, but women are becoming the real losers.

Soon, House Democrats are expected to reintroduce the Equality Act and likely expedite its passage. Although the bill may not see Senate action, the deceptively named “Equality Act” could be a difficult political hurdle for some, and details just how far the left will try to push the debate. The Equality Act seeks to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the immutable protected classes outlined in the Civil Rights Act. In addition to very legitimate religious liberty concerns, the Equality Act would directly harm women and girls by compromising sex-segregated spaces and placing women’s privacy and safety in jeopardy.

The left is openly shutting down anyone who dares to question the transgender movement and has no problem eating their own. One of the panelists, Julia Beck, a writer who is a producer at Women’s Liberation Radio News who is openly lesbian, testified how she was removed from Baltimore’s LGBTQ Commission for “using male pronouns to talk about a convicted male rapist who identifies as transgender and prefers female pronouns.” They referred to her speech as violent.

One of the other panelists, Kara Dansky, a board member of the self-described “radical feminist” group the Women’s Liberation Front, pointed out how difficult it is to even define the term “gender identity” without using circular reasoning or gender stereotypes. Gender identity, according to the left, is fluid and is defined as the gender you identify as or as a man wearing dresses or participating in stereotypical female activities. As we know, a woman’s choice to dress a certain way does not determine whether or not she is a woman, sex is an objective scientific, biological fact. The left is so adamant on destroying all gender stereotypes, yet they are still compelled to use them to define gender identity. This is a regressive policy.

In Alaska we have already seen women’s rights trumped by ordinances requiring transgender accommodation. In Downtown Hope Center v. Municipality of Anchorage, a homeless shelter, serving women who have suffered rape, physical abuse, and domestic violence, is being accused of turning away a transgender woman.  Women staying at the shelter said, “If you allow biological men to sleep right next to us at night, to disrobe and change right next to us at night, we’ll brave the cold.[1]” This clearly undermines protections for women who have escaped abusive, violent situations and forces them into an uncomfortable, vulnerable position in a place that should be safe.

In the words of these feminists, the Equality Act would erase women, making the unique biological character of being female become meaningless.  Sharing similar concerns, Concerned Women for America is joining efforts to ensure women are not erased.

[1]https://www.ktuu.com/content/news/Transgender-woman-at-center-of-Downtown-Soup-Kitchen-lawsuit-speaks-out-504529741.html

Fifth Circuit: Planned Parenthood Undercover Videos Authentic and Not Deceptively Edited

By | Legal, News and Events, Planned Parenthood, Sanctity of Life, Texas | No Comments

CWA President & CEO Penny Nance talks with CMP Founder David Daleiden at the 2019 March for Life

After being exposed for their unscrupulous attempts to sell baby body parts for profit, Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the nation, tried to discredit the evidence in a massive PR campaign. They claim the videos which clearly showed they sought to benefit from the sale of aborted baby hearts, brains, lungs, etc. were “deceptively edited.”

This blatant lie was so flagrantly promoted by the liberal mainstream media that many Americans, including some judges, took it as fact.

Thankfully, we still have independent-minded judges who refuse to adjudicate based on popular beliefs, choosing instead to follow the law as written, even in difficult cases. Such was the case with a panel from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals who took a look at the evidence in Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas v. Smith.

The panel found a district court who had fully sided with Planned Parenthood’s characterization of the video evidence based on their word alone had abused its discretion. The Fifth Circuit panel composed of Judges Edith Jones, E. Grady Jolly, and Catharina Haynes, said, “The district court stated, inaccurately, that the CMP video had not been authenticated and suggested that it may have been edited” (Emphasis mine). The appellate panel was not just acting on emotion or personal preference by writing this, there was no evidence, aside from Planned Parenthood’s word, to sustain the district court’s characterization of the videos. The court notes:

In fact, the record reflects that [the Texas Health and Human Services Commission Office of Inspector General (OIG)] had submitted a report from a forensic firm concluding that the video was authentic and not deceptively edited. And the plaintiffs did not identify any particular omission or addition in the video footage. (Emphasis mine)

This simple statement of truth has sent shockwaves around the country. And we shouldn’t be surprised. Just as darkness cannot withstand the light, lies crumble at the sight of truth. The court’s acknowledgment is also great vindication for David Daleiden, the founder of The Center for Medical Progress (CMP), who produced the groundbreaking undercover videos exposing the dubious, unethical, immoral, and potentially criminal enterprise.

Daleiden said in a statement: “CMP’s undercover video series caught Planned Parenthood’s top leaders openly admitting to selling baby body parts for profit in violation of federal law. Tonight, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals vindicated our citizen journalism work by debunking Planned Parenthood’s smear that the videos were ‘heavily edited’ or ‘doctored.’”

The Texas case dealt with the state’s efforts to terminate its Medicaid provider agreement with Planned Parenthood after their unethical behavior was revealed by the CMP videos. Federal law allows states to terminate a Medical provider agreement when, as in this case, there is evidence of a program violation. The Court explained that, “A ‘program violation’ includes any violation of federal law, state law, or the Texas Medicaid program policies.”

Federal law makes it a crime “to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce” (42 U.S.C. 289g-2). Not only that, it also requires “no alteration of the timing, method, or procedures used to terminate the pregnancy [be] made solely for the purposes of obtaining the tissue” (42 U.S.C. 289g-1(b)(2)). This is exactly what we see in the forensically-authenticated CMP videos.

The court noted several statements where the videos clearly show Planned Parenthood was willing and able to change the abortion procedure to obtain “intact specimens.” Quoting their representative:

Yeah. So she knows what’s involved in modifying what we need to do to get you the specimens that are intact because she’s done it. … And she was doing those here.

Note Planned Parenthood not only admits it is willing to alter its abortion procedures for this purpose in the future, but it alleges they have done it in the past, also. There are numerous statements of this nature. The lower court dismissed all those statements because it wholeheartedly took Planned Parenthood’s word that they didn’t mean any of it. The appellate panel said, “The district court credited [Planned Parenthood’s] self-justifying explanations.”

It would be like a court believing an abuser because he shows up in court and says he didn’t do anything, while dismissing outright all the bruises and testimony from the victim. The district court’s decision was not based on facts but preference. One can see that when the appellate court notes the lower court actually concluded there was no “evidence, or even a scintilla of evidence,” for Texas’ conclusions about Planned Parenthood. Whatever you think of their decision, any reasonable observer can see that the videos are something – gosh, are the millions of people troubled by them just uneducated troglodytes?

It is that type of extreme, unmeasured action by a judge which shows they are not approaching a case and the evidence in good faith. The appellate court, on the other hand, approached the case with the evenhandedness that is at the heart of ensuring a just outcome. It identifies the case as a case of “judicial review of an agency action.” And accordingly, it gives proper deference to the state agency on its determinations. It noted, “despite being litigated with the trappings of the abortion debate, this is fundamentally a statutory construction case, not an abortion case.”

This is the model of judicial restraint that should be paramount in our judicial system. The court gives deference to the state agency in making its determination based on legitimate evidence of misconduct.

Planned Parenthood argued that Texas could not even make a determination on them because “OIG has insufficient expertise to determine the qualifications of abortion providers.” Unbelievably, the lower court had gone along with Planned Parenthood in that argument too.

Fortunately, the appellate panel gave a proper smackdown to that inane notion:

We reject this argument. OIG is the agency that the state of Texas has empowered to investigate and penalize Medicaid program violations. The agency is in the business of saying when providers are qualified and when they are not. That the Chief Medical Officer is a surgeon—and not himself an abortion provider— does not mean that he deserves no deference when deciding whether a provider has failed to meet the medical and ethical standards the state requires. It is even odder to claim that federal judges, who have no experience in the regulations and ethics applicable to Medicaid or medical practice, much less in regard to harvesting fetal organs for research, should claim superior expertise. (Emphasis mine)

The appellate court ultimately vacated the preliminary injunction imposed by the district court. It remanded the case back to limit the review to the agency record, taking a serious look at the evidence in the videos and not merely at Planned Parenthood’s self-serving explanations after the fact. It also asked the lower court to review the case under the proper arbitrary-and-capricious standard. Here’s hoping they follow through on their application of the law this time, regardless of the political pressures that come with any case even remotely associated with Planned Parenthood.

Mario Diaz, Esq. is CWA’s general counsel. Follow him on Twitter @mariodiazesq.

An Open Letter to Governor Cuomo

By | Blog, New York, News and Events, Planned Parenthood, Sanctity of Life, YWA | No Comments

Dear Mr. Cuomo,

Do you remember the day in the hospital room when you held your daughters, Cara and Mariah, for the first time?  And then the day you held Michaela? Those are the babies you are allowing to be killed. Fully developed, feeling, dreaming, cognitive, valuable, unique, and American. Right before they are to make their appearance, you are celebrating that they can be killed.

I am a woman, a New Yorker, and a millennial. Every single fiber of my being disapproves of what you signed on Tuesday.

I and thousands of other New Yorkers are absolutely horrified and disgusted by your blatant disregard for the value of life.

You are hurting women in the name of “reproductive health.”

You just made it legal to kill fully developed 7-, 8-, 9-, 10-pound babies.

You just made it more dangerous for the women that do end the life of their child by allowing non-doctors to perform abortions. This is a Kermit Gosnell-type of disregard for women.

You also just made it more unsafe, painful, and deadly for the babies who survive abortions.

This is most definitely NOT a victory for all New Yorkers.  It is a grave loss. A dark, discouraging, and horrifying time for New Yorkers and all Americans.

You say that you want “to ensure a woman’s right to make her own decisions.” Under your new law, more New York women will never be able to make a single decision. You have denied her the most fundamental right. Her right to life.

We will continue to fight for vulnerable babies in the womb, sir. I will continue to stand up and be a voice for the voiceless. We are endowed with certain unalienable rights, and it is an unthinkable evil that we do not protect the fundamental right to life in America.

This was not a win for women. It was the worst of losses.

-Kelsey Good


Note to readers:

New Yorkers, get involved.  Christians, rise up.  Churches, speak out.

Join an organization. Get news alerts from different news stations. Pick up a book.

Get off your couches and go to the state capitol. Stop scrolling on Instagram, and keep up with the legislation in your capitol and in D.C.

You have a choice to make a difference. Stand up for truth. Be part of the solution.

 

Planned Parenthood Annual Report Shows Abortion and Federal Funding Increase

By | Blog, News and Events, Press Releases, Sanctity of Life | No Comments
Washington, D.C. — Planned Parenthood’s 2017-18 Annual Report confirms that Planned Parenthood continued to establish themselves as a taxpayer-funded abortion giant.

Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee, issued the following statement:

“If Planned Parenthood was a women’s health care provider, abortions would not make up 96% of their pregnancy services. In 2017-18, Planned Parenthood performed 332,757 abortions, an increase of more than 11,000 since the previous year. That is 332,757 individuals who our country will never realize. The fact that abortion is Planned Parenthood’s primary goal is not a secret. President Leana Wen stated that Planned Parenthood’s ‘core mission is providing, protecting and expanding access to abortion.’

“Meanwhile, cancer screenings, breast exams, and pap smears have continued to decrease. There is something wrong with an organization that claims to provide women’s health care but whose prevention services are declining to the tune of 67%!
“Unique patients have dropped by 20%, and 29% of Planned Parenthood facilities have closed their doors while the United States Federal Government continues to pump money into the industry. All the while, Americans have spoken up again and again, urging Congress to not use their money to fund abortion services.
“A recent Marist poll again showed that a majority of Americans oppose any taxpayer funding of abortion, and yet, somehow, Planned Parenthood’s taxpayer funding hit a record high. Taxpayer funding saw an increase from $543.7 million to $563.8 million – more than $1.5 million per day. At what point do we examine the cost and ask ourselves, ‘To what end?’ One and a half million dollars per day to facilitate the loss of hundreds of thousands of precious lives.”
For an interview with Penny Nance, contact Annabelle Rutledge at [email protected] or 916-792-3973.

California and New York Reach New Lows as Abortion Promoters

By | Blog, News and Events, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Trump Administration has repeatedly stated that conscience rights are a priority, and it has taken strides to do just that. HHS has issued several regulations aimed at conscience protection in contraception, insurance plans, Title X grant funding, and strengthening existing conscience laws. A year ago, HHS created the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division. This is the first time a federal office for civil rights has established a separate division “dedicated to ensuring compliance with and enforcement of laws that protect conscience and free exercise of religion in healthcare and human services[1].”

Last Friday, the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division of HHS notified the State of California that the Reproductive FACT (Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care and Transparency) Act violates the federal pro-life Coates-Snowe and Weldon Amendments. This is the first time any state has been found in violation of these amendments which protect the conscience rights of healthcare entities and healthcare workers from performing, participating, advertising, or referring for abortions.

In 2016, California enacted the FACT Actwhich forced all healthcare providers in the state, including pro-life pregnancy care centers, to advertise and refer for abortion. A group of pro-life pregnancy centers sued.  In June the U.S. Supreme Court, in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra, 138 S. Ct. 2361 (2018) (“NIFLA”) held that the FACT Act was unconstitutional as compelled speech in violation of the First Amendment. Ever since the FACT Act was introduced, CWA and other pro-religious liberty and pro-life groups have been arguing that this Act is also a clear violation of federal laws protecting conscience rights.

Although California is prohibited from enforcing the FACT Act because of the Supreme Court ruling, being found in violation of federal conscience laws by HHS is still significant. This not only tells California they cannot shove aside the conscience rights of those who are pro-life, but it also puts other states on notice and at a pertinent time.

Just this week, New York enacted a law signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo that codified a woman’s “right” to an abortion, removed abortion from New York’s criminal code, and allows women to have abortions after24 weeks when “there is an absence of fetal viability, or at any time when necessary to protect a patient’s life or health.” Not only is this unbelievably horrible, but New York already has been cited for serious conscience concerns and violations for health care workers opposed to an abortion.

New York’s radical law is not about protecting abortion rights; it’s about aggressively promoting abortion, and Planned Parenthood couldn’t be more ecstatic. It is also far out of the mainstream American view on abortion. The New York Legislature missed the memo that 75% of Americanssupport significant abortion restrictions and do not support abortion after the first trimester. Although Planned Parenthood and NARAL were in the New York Senate chamber cheering for a law that can’t get much closer than legalizing infanticide outright, we know science and truth are on the side of life.

 

[1]https://www.hhs.gov/about/news/2019/01/18/trump-administration-actions-to-protect-life-and-conscience.html

CWA at the March For All Women

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On January 19, CWA’s Vice President of International Affairs, Dr. Shea Garrison, was a voice for conservative women at the March for ALL Women rally in Washington, D.C.  The March for ALL Women was sponsored by Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) and took place next to the 3rdannual Women’s March (WM) at Pershing Park. The Women’s March, which purports to speak for all women, does not include women who believe in conservative values or life or family values. The WM also stands in strong opposition to the Trump Administration. The March for ALL Women is an alternative which “represents the rising tide of women who stand against the divisiveness of the so-called Women’s March …” and who “in all their individual variety, deserve to be heard.”  

Read Shea’s rally speech:

“Good morning. I’m excited to speak to you at this rally today because it celebrates the diversity of strong and intelligent women and contradicts the idea that all women think the same.

Our organization, Concerned Women for America, was actually founded on this principle 40 years ago.  In 1979, our founder Beverly LaHaye was determined that the feminist movement, which had detached itself from all semblance of conservative values, would not speak for her or for the millions of other women who valued family and life. Her message was simply this: “You-don’t-speak-for-me!”

Today, our message is still the same. That’s encouraging to me because women are continuing to insist that we have our own minds, we make our own decisions, and we can discern right from wrong.

A moment in my own history stands out to me, a turning point in my own thinking about this subject: A male colleague, a professor who I highly respect, told me that women who didn’t vote for Hillary did so because they weren’t yet ready for a woman president; that they couldn’t yet envision a woman leader of the United States.

How condescending to me. His statement implied that because I didn’t vote for her, I was sexist and backwards—it couldn’t possibly be that I disagreed with her principles and didn’t want them institutionalized into my country.

There are millions of women in the U.S. who believe in equality between men and women, but also believe in conservative values such as limited government, freedom of religion and belief, free markets, life, and family. And many of us are women of faith from a variety of ethnic and religious backgrounds.

If I have one message to leave you with today, it’s this: We need each other. I have found that women often feel excluded, isolated, even shamed because of their conservative beliefs. But they find strength to speak the truth when other women, like me and like you, have the courage to stand up and say: “You don’t speak for me”.

I believe God has given women a unique platform to speak truth into our homes, our communities, and across our nation–we don’t think just like men, or act just like men, or react the same way as men. What a loss if women don’t contribute to their fullest potential possible.  Some of us are wives and mothers, yes, but we’re also engineers, academics, activists, and artists.

So, I want to encourage you to do three things today: One, we need each other—so let’s continue to unite. Two, let’s continue to speak the truth. And three, let’s continue to make the point very clear to those who have excluded us from a so-called celebration of womanhood: ‘You-Don’t-Speak-For-ME!’  Thank you very much.”

There is a Darkness Growing in New York

By | LBB, Legal, New York, News and Events, Planned Parenthood, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

By now you have probably seen the video (below) of the New York State Senate cheering the “Reproductive Health Act” which would effectively allow abortions up to just before birth. It is heartbreaking. This is not just the sentiment of a few legislators either. It is a direct reflection of the majority of the people of New York. Their elected officials consistently reflect the condition of their hearts. Recall that New York City discovered in 2012 that more African American babies were killed by abortion (31,328) than born (24,758). From that experience, they’ve emerged with a desire to expand abortions.

I first came across the video with a comment from Benjamin Watson, the NFL player who is a courageous voice for life in our day. He commented, “It is a sad and evil day when the murder of our most innocent and vulnerable is celebrated with such overwhelming exuberance. We SHOULD be supporting and encouraging the building of families which are fundamental to any society. By not doing so, we invite consequences untold.”

 

He captured well in just a tweet what I felt as my heart broke for the people of New York. I pray that God may have mercy on them, that they may feel the evil that has taken hold of their hearts and minds, so they might turn and repent from their ways.

The worst of consequences for New York would be to be left to their own devices and continue to think of themselves as the best of the best. To continue to be blinded by the big billboards and the lights, its celebrities, and big sporting events. Underneath the glamour, there is a deep sadness to this city. A spiritual sadness. People who can barely make it each day. They are crying out for help only to hear the reflection of their own voices on the busy bodies walking pass them.

I pray for the New York Church. I pray that they might shine brightly in the middle of increasing darkness. I pray this news presents a moment of self-reflection. I pray they cry out in unison for God’s discipline, for that would be a great mercy. Like a loving father, the Lord disciplines those whom He loves (Hebrews 12:6). There are those whom God gives up to follow their own appetites, “to do what ought not to be done,” says the Apostle Paul (Romans 1:28). This is the worst of scenarios.

Those of us outside the state must also be diligent to stand up and raise our voices for these children who cannot speak for themselves (Proverbs 31:8). To speak of the people of New York is in many ways to speak of us, wherever we are in America. Paul warned not only those who practice these evil deeds but of those who “give approval to those who practice them” (Romans 1:32). Let us never be accused of approval because of our silence. May we never be seen as those who would sacrifice justice and mercy for the unborn on the altar of personal comfort.

Let us resolve to speak ever more boldly for the unborn in New York and wherever we are. Let us recommit our efforts to support women in crisis pregnancy and to love each person at every stage of life for their intrinsic value, as created in the image of God.

Mario Diaz, Esq. is CWA’s general counsel. Follow him on Twitter @mariodiazesq.

For America (Day 100)

By | News and Events, Prayer | No Comments

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace,
You deserve all praise and honor;
In You all things hold together.

Therefore, to You we lift our voices.
As a country and a people in desperate need
Of Your intervention and restoration.
Incline Your ears to our supplications, Lord.

We are sinners crumbling under the weight of our sin.
Have mercy on us and come to our rescue.
Let the light of Your Son, our Savior, shine in the hearts
Of many in our land — let revival arise!

For we know that despite all our efforts
What we need is a change of heart, a new heart.
And what can we ultimately do to bring this about
But to speak truth and let Your Holy Spirit move?

Let us see truth, therefore,
Clearly and magnificently.
Help us open our eyes to see beyond
The lies of this present world.

Help us focus on the new one to come
The one You promised through Your Son.
Oh Lord, we trust only in Your Love
Refocus us. Consecrate us. To You.

Help us walk with integrity in the light.
Help us to love each other, as You command.
Help us believe Your promises
And to walk confidently in them.

Help us to speak boldly, proclaiming Your name,
Defeating the enemy’s lies at every turn,
Suffering the consequences of being Yours,
Bearing our cross daily until You come.

In Christ’s name we pray these things,
Amen.


Click here for more prayers from our For America Prayer Journal.

Mario Diaz, Esq. is CWA’s general counsel. Follow him on Twitter @mariodiazesq.

Supreme Court Punts on Important Religious Liberty Case

By | Legal, News and Events, Religious Liberty | No Comments

It is difficult to find words that can adequately sound the alarm of the religious liberty threats we face as a nation. We are getting weaker by the moment on the protection of our “first freedom,” and the opposition gets bolder with every half-hearted attempt, whether by courts or opportunistic politicians, to take the middle ground where none exists.

The recent denial of cert. (judicial review) in the case of Coach Kennedy (Kennedy v. Bremerton School District), who was fired for daring to pray privately after high school football games, is a prime example of how anemic we have become. Concerned Women for America (CWA) submitted a brief in support of Coach Kennedy alongside other religious liberty organizations. The reasons the Supreme Court’s conservative majority gave for declining to hear the case are unpersuasive and should be a warning of trouble ahead for us all.

In a disappointing statement by Justice Samuel Alito, who was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh, they try to save face by reminding us that the “denial of certiorari does not signify that the Court necessarily agrees with the decision (much less the opinion) below.”

He is right. It does not mean that. It certainly does not mean they disagree with the decision either, or they would have vacated it. What they say is that, “In this case important unresolved factual questions would make it very difficult if not impossible at this stage to decide the free speech question that the petition asks us to review.”

What are these important “unresolved factual questions”? Well, the statement notes that Coach Kennedy was given two reasons for being fired: (1) that he neglected his responsibility to supervise his players while he was praying, and (2) that his actions would lead a reasonable observer to think the district was endorsing a religion. These reasons were given in writing. There is no factual question about them. Still, the statement of Justices Alito joined by Thomas, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh, claims, “the court should have made a specific finding as to what petitioner was likely to be able to show regarding the reason or reasons for his loss of employment.”

For that reason, they actually concur in the denial. This is mindboggling. They criticize the district court for converging the two reasons together, but the district court is not wrong. The only reason he was fired is because he was praying.  Surely the justices do not think he would be fired if he goes to the restroom after the game, “leaving the kids unsupervised.” Coach Kennedy was fired because he dared say a private prayer in a way that could be seen publicly. He is Daniel praying in his chambers while being seen through the window. And our laws today in the year 2019 in America allow him to be thrown in the lion’s den of unemployment.

The justices’ statement does show some apprehension to this incredible injustice.  Alito writes, “While I thus concur in the denial of the present petition, the Ninth Circuit’s understanding of the free speech rights of public-school teachers is troubling and may justify review in the future.”

Oh good; Coach Kennedy might just need to spend another decade fighting this case in order to see justice. Listen to what they acknowledge:

According to the Ninth Circuit, public school teachers and coaches may be fired if they engage in any expression that the school does not like while they are on duty, and the Ninth Circuit appears to regard teachers and coaches as being on duty at all times from the moment they report for work to the moment they depart, provided that they are within the eyesight of students.

Exactly. Then, why in the world would they concur with denying judicial review? Why not take the case and undo the damage done by the Ninth Circuit? Send a clear message in support of religious freedom. The statement continues: “What is perhaps most troubling about the Ninth Circuit’s opinion is language that can be understood to mean that a coach’s duty to serve as a good role model requires the coach to refrain from any manifestation of religious faith — even when the coach is plainly not on duty.” Again, such blatant hostility towards religion is prohibited by the Constitution, which is why it is a shame the Court elected to punt on this case.

And it gets even worse. Alito again,

[T]he Court criticized him for “his media appearances and prayer in the BHS bleachers (while wearing BHS apparel and surrounded by others).” This conduct, in the opinion of the Ninth Circuit, “signal[ed] his intent to send a message to students and parents about appropriate behavior and what he values as a coach.” But when petitioner prayed in the bleachers, he had been suspended. He was attending a game like any other fan. The suggestion that even while off duty, a teacher or coach cannot engage in any outward manifestation of religious faith is remarkable. (Internal citations omitted)

These blatant violations of Coach Kennedy’s constitutional rights more than warrant the Supreme Court’s attention.  At a time when hostility towards Christian beliefs continues to rise in our country, it is unfortunate not to have enough votes at the Supreme Court to give a hearing to such an important case.

We are grateful the statement signals that this case is not over, “While the petition now before us is based solely on the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment, petitioner still has live claims under the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.” But people of faith all over America are rightly pondering if they will be the next victim of our lack of courage in protecting religious freedom. What will it take for us to wake up and fight for religious freedom with the resolve it warrants?