Saturday, June 22, 2024
Saturday, June 22, 2024
HomeAll The NewsTRUMPET NOTES: June 14, 2023

TRUMPET NOTES: June 14, 2023

Third Baby Surrendered At Benton Safe Haven Baby Box

Another newborn baby has been safely surrendered at one of Benton’s two Safe Haven Baby Boxes making it the fifth surrender in Arkansas. It is the third time a baby box has been used in Benton and the second surrender in May of this year. The first baby surrendered in Arkansas was at a Safe Haven Baby Box in May 2020 in Benton.

“Arkansas Right to Life applauds the surrender of another infant in a Safe Haven Baby Box and knows this mother made the best parenting decision ever for her child by choosing life and adoption,” said Rose Mimms, Arkansas Right to Life executive director.

Safe Haven Baby Boxes are installed on the exterior wall of a designated fire station or hospital. Other boxes in Arkansas are located in Cabot, Jacksonville, Hot Springs, Rogers, Springdale, Mountain Home, Jonesboro, Conway, Fort Smith, Maumelle, DeQueen, Nashville, Magnolia and El Dorado. The Safe Haven Baby Box hotline number is listed on all billboards. (artl.org)

FFRF Chastises County Sheriff Over Inmate Baptisms

The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) has sent a complaint to the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office in Arkansas over baptisms that recently occurred at the county’s correctional facility.

In a press release, the atheist organization wrote, “FFRF has been alerted that the Sheriff’s Office recently hosted a baptism for inmates in partnership with Kibler Baptist Church. It then promoted the government-sponsored religious activity and its preference for Christianity on Facebook, celebrating how ‘38 incarcerated men and women accepted Jesus Christ behind bars.’”

Following the complaint, 40/29 News reported that the baptism was organized by jail chaplains who minister to inmates inside the detention center and that it was inmates who made the request. A sheriff’s deputy said the Facebook post was taken down to remove any confusion.

This isn’t the first time the Freedom From Religion Foundation has been active in Arkansas. Last fall, the atheist group issued a statement celebrating the defeat of religious freedom amendment Issue 3, which narrowly failed at the ballot box in Arkansas. The FFRF has opposed public prayer at meetings and gatherings in Arkansas, and has also filed a lawsuit to have a monument of the Ten Commandments removed from the Arkansas Capitol grounds. In 2017, the group demanded that Governor Hutchinson stop sharing Bible verses on his Facebook page. In 2016, FFRF went after Washington County election officials for using churches as polling places.

The FFRF has even complained about the fact that that Arkansas’ public school students can study the Bible academically — even though it is one of the oldest texts in existence and has had a profound influence on human history.

It’s worth noting, that across the board, groups like the FFRF tend to threaten lawsuits. If people stand their ground, these organizations rarely follow through by filing a lawsuit.

Religious freedom is a fundamental right in America, and groups like the FFRF infringe that liberty when they work to purge the free exercise of religion from public life. (familycouncil.org)

Not the Pot of Gold We Were Sold

Analyzing medical data from 6 million people, researchers in Denmark have found that up to 30% of schizophrenia cases among young men could be linked to marijuana use. Increased potency of marijuana in the global market is a factor, and lawmakers have “decreased the public’s perception of its harm,” according to the study’s lead author.

The law is a teacher. Legalizing marijuana use essentially teaches constituents that marijuana is safe, but it isn’t. Legalizing pot was, especially early on, sold as a way of helping sick people.

As far as the cannabis industry is concerned, which is estimated this year to be worth $32 billion, it has never really been about health. As more and more evidence emerges that pot is not as safe as the public was sold, we’ll learn whether it’s possible to put this genie back in its bottle. (breakpoint.org)

Law Banning Public Drag Shows Ruled Unconstitutional

A federal district judge has ruled unconstitutional a Tennessee law prohibiting gender-bending drag performances in front of minors, which had been the only such law in the nation. Tennessee’s Adult Entertainment Act (AEA) violates constitutionally protected freedom of speech, U.S. District Judge Thomas Parker ruled late June 2 in the Western District Court of Tennessee.

“The AEA’s regulation of ‘adult-oriented performances that are harmful to minors under section 39-17-901’ does target protected speech, despite defendant claims to the contrary,” Parker wrote in the 70-page decision. “Whether some of us may like it or not, the Supreme Court has interpreted the First Amendment as protecting speech that is indecent but not obscene.

“Simply put, no majority of the Supreme Court has held that sexually explicit — but not obscene — speech receives less protection than political, artistic or scientific speech,” Parker wrote, referencing Ashcroft v. ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) of 2002. “It is also well established that speech may not be prohibited because it concerns subjects affecting our sensibilities,” Parker quoted Ashcroft v. ACLU.

Friends of George’s, Inc., a venue that produces drag shows, comedy sketches and plays in Memphis, challenged the Tennessee law, taking Shelby Country District Attorney Steven Milroy to court. Parker’s June 2 ruling followed his initial March 30 stay on the law that was set to take effect April 1.

Mulroe defended the law as a move to protect children from obscenities, but Parker disagreed. “After considering the briefs and evidence presented at trial, the Court finds that — despite Tennessee’s compelling interest in protecting the psychological and physical wellbeing of children, the Adult Entertainment Act (AEA) is an unconstitutional restriction on the freedom of speech and permanently enjoins Defendant Steven Mulvoy from enforcing the unconstitutional statute.”

Tennessee was the first state to enact such a law, standing out among more than a dozen states that attempted such legislation but failed to secure passage before their 2023 legislative sessions ended.

Sen. Jack Jackson, a Republican from Franklin who sponsored the bill, had said it was designed to prohibit “sexually explicit adult-themed entertainment” from being performed in front of children. But those who opposed the law said its language was too vague to determine which shows would be illegal.

“If someone wants to have a drag show, that is totally fine, my legislation doesn’t do anything to change that,” Jackson has said. “It’s just while you’re having your drag show, you can’t simulate sex acts.”

Idaho, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, Kentucky, West Virginia and Nebraska are among states that attempted similar bills in 2023, including bills prohibiting drag shows and cabaret performances, and a Missouri bill that would have outlawed drag queen story hours targeting minors.

Arkansas’ attempt to ban public drag shows was amended to drop references to drag shows, instead prohibiting “adult-oriented” shows from public spaces. Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed the bill into law Feb. 27. (baptistpress.com)

Biden Revokes Funds To States Because They’re Pro-Life

Leading conservative Gary Bauer slammed the Biden administration June 5 for “punishing the poor” by denying health care funds to Texas and Oklahoma because their states protect unborn babies from abortion. Writing at the Patriot Post, Bauer called out President Joe Biden’s hypocrisy while urging conservatives to “push back” against the violence and the lies.

June 1, news broke that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) rescinded a $4.5 million grant to Oklahoma to provide family planning services to low-income individuals. According to The Federalist, the reason was because Oklahoma protects unborn babies by banning elective abortions and taxpayer funding for abortions, and to receive the Title X grant money, the Biden administration now requires states to promote abortions.

Texas was the first state to protect unborn babies by banning most abortions in 2021, and Oklahoma became the second several months later. Now, both states bans all elective abortions, and pro-life advocates and lawmakers are working to expand support services for families in need. But Bauer said the Biden administration is trying to stop them.

Almost a year since the historic Dobbs v. Jackson ruling, 15 states now protect unborn babies by banning all or most abortions, and others are fighting in court to do the same. Research from Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America estimates roughly 60,000 unborn babies have been saved from abortion.

These same states are also working to help mothers and fathers in need by expanding aid for pregnancy/parenting support programs, Medicaid and foster/adoption services, creating tax credits for unborn babies and ensuring workplace accommodations such as paid parental leave and flexible hours are available to parents. Pro-life advocates are also opening and expanding pregnancy resource centers, maternity homes and other community-based charities that walk alongside struggling families locally, providing material support, information, counseling, encouragement and more to help mothers choose life for their babies. (lifenews.com)

Maryland Lawsuit Highlights Importance of Arkansas Laws

On May 24, three families — one Muslim, one Roman Catholic, and one Ukrainian Orthodox — filed a lawsuit against Maryland’s Montgomery County Board of Education. In March, the school district shifted its policy concerning objectionable material, announcing parents would no longer be notified about LGBT content at school and would no longer be allowed to opt their children out of pro-LGBT material.

World News Group writes, “When the Montgomery County school district introduced pro-LGBT children’s books into its curriculum last year, all three families decided the content of the books didn’t line up with their religious beliefs about sexuality and marriage. Since the state of Maryland and the Montgomery County district both allow students to opt out of instruction related to family life and human sexuality, the parents declined to have their children in class for the readings. But in March, the school board announced that teachers would no longer offer notice about the LGBT material and students could not opt out, according to a federal lawsuit filed against the board in May.”

The lawsuit alleges that the “Pride Storybooks” in question are not age appropriate for children and that the books “promote one-sided transgender ideology, encourage gender transitioning and focus excessively on romantic infatuation — with no parental notification or opportunity to opt out.”

The complaint filed in court includes photographs and explanations of some of the objectionable material in the books. For example, the lawsuit alleges that the book Pride Puppy “invites three and four-year-olds to look for images of things they might find at a pride parade, including an ‘intersex flag,’ a ‘drag king’ and ‘drag queen,’ ‘leather,’ ‘underwear’ and an image of a celebrated LGBTQ activist and sex worker, ‘Marsha P. Johnson.’” It also highlights pro-LGBT books Love, Violet and Born Ready: The True Story Of A Boy Named Penelope.

These “Pride Storybooks” are similar to pro-LGBT books that have caused controversy in libraries in Arkansas. In fact, the Arkansas State Library System indicates that Born Ready is available at the Crawford County Library System and the Crowley’s Ridge Regional Library. Pride Puppy is available at the Crowley’s Ridge Regional Library, the Arkansas River Valley Library System and the North Little Rock Public Library System. And Love, Violet is available at the Crawford County Library System, the North Little Rock Public Library System, multiple locations in the Central Arkansas Library System and other libraries in Arkansas. All these books target young children.

Arkansas lawmakers have taken steps to keep this type of material out of public-school classrooms. For example, Act 237 of 2023 (the LEARNS Act) is the omnibus education law by Sen. Breanne Davis (R/Russellville) and Rep. Keith Brooks (R/Little Rock) that helps prohibit critical race theory in Arkansas’ public schools, and it protects elementary students from inappropriate sexual material at school. 

Public schools have no business promoting pro-LGBT ideology to children, and schools ought to respect parental rights. This lawsuit in Maryland serves as a reminder of those simple facts. (familycouncil.org)

RELATED ARTICLES