Civil rights

Could Gay Marriage Lead to . . . Tax Reform?

Featured image Morningafterwise, we didn’t have to wait long for conjectures like this from Time: Now’s the Time to End Tax Exemptions for Religious Institutions . . .  Rather than try to rescue tax-exempt status for organizations that dissent from settled public policy on matters of race or sexuality, we need to take a more radical step. It’s time to abolish, or greatly diminish, their tax-exempt statuses. Or the New York Times »

Post-Obergefell Civil Rights: A Tangle or a Knot?

Featured image Remember the Hobby Lobby decision last year, where the Supreme Court sided with employers whose religious faith led them to object to the Obamacare mandate that all health insurance policies must offer contraceptive coverage? The authoritarian and conformist left howled with indignation. Get ready for a lot of sequels in the aftermath of Obergefell. On Friday the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations in America issued a very gracious statement about »

Understated Headline of the Week

Featured image With the exception of what it calls “B-Hed” features about quirky news, the Wall Street Journal typically employs a fairly straight up headline style (unlike The Economist), but sometimes they could use just a little more imagination.  Consider today’s front page howler: In Campus Rape Cases, Some Men See Injustice Well, duh.  Ya think?  And especially given some of the understated but devastating reporting in the body of the story: »

A bridge for sale

Featured image Yesterday President Obama spoke at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in observation of the fiftieth anniversary of Bloody Sunday and the Selma to Montgomery marches. The White House has posted the text of Obama’s speech here and the video below. I encourage interested readers to check out the text or the video for themselves. President Obama began by paying tribute to Rep. John Lewis, whom he identified as “one of [his] »

The prophetic voice

Featured image When Martin Luther King, Jr., brought his nonviolent campaign against segregation to Bull Connor’s Birmingham, he laid siege to the bastion of Jim Crow. In Birmingham between 1957 and 1962, black homes and churches had been subjected to a series of horrific bombings intended to terrorize the community. In April 1963 King answered the call to bring his campaign to Birmingham. When King landed in jail on Good Friday for »

Eric Holder invents rights for the transgendered

Featured image Christian Adams reports that Eric Holder has issued a decree stating that cross dressing and transsexualism are now protected under federal civil rights laws designed to protect women from sex discrimination. According to Holder, the “most straightforward reading” of Title VII’s bar on discrimination ‘because of … sex’ — indeed, the “plain meaning” of its text — is that it bars discrimination “based on gender identity, including transgender status.” Therefore, »

New frontiers in freedom

Featured image I may be mistaken, but it has seemed to me for quite a while that the campaign for gay marriage is about something other than “freedom” or “acceptance” or “equal rights.” The point of the campaign seems to me that we are compelled to get our minds right, to borrow the resonant phrase of the jailers in Cool Hand Luke. The proponents of “marriage equality” demand our inner assent. We »

Ninth Circuit considers Guam’s racially discriminatory plebiscite registraton law

Featured image The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit heard oral argument yesterday in the case of Davis v. Guam. The hearing occurred in Guam, the first time the Ninth Circuit has sat there since 2002. Mr. Davis, a resident of Guam, attempted to register to vote in a plebiscite on Guam’s relationship to the United States. He was denied permission to register because he could not trace his »

The Wagner case decision

Featured image This past February Paul wrote about the case of Teresa Wagner v. Carolyn Jones, Dean of the University of Iowa College of Law in this post. Like Paul, I had read Peter Berkowitz’s Wall Street Journal column over the previous weekend and noted that the oral argument in Ms. Wagner’s appeal was scheduled before the Eighth Circuit in St. Paul the following Thursday morning. TaxProf Paul Caron picked up on »

Is this where it all ENDAs?

Featured image I’ve suspected for some time that there is something radically out of kilter with the gay rights movement in America. Now, I’m sure of it. The Washington Post reports: Several major gay rights groups withdrew support Tuesday for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act that would bolster gay and transgender rights in the workplace, saying they fear that broad religious exemptions included in the current bill might compel private companies to begin »

Would the civil rights act of 1964 pass Congress today?

Featured image Today marks the 50th anniversary of the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It passed Congress over the strenuous opposition, and indeed filibuster, of Southern Democrats. At Politico, Todd Purdum seizes on the occasion to argue that this landmark legislation could not pass Congress today. This is mainly true, he asserts, because “sometime in the 1980s” the Barry Goldwater wing of the Republican Party seized control causing the »

Reparations? Perhaps—But Democrats Should Pay Them [with comment by Paul]

Featured image The idea of paying reparations for slavery is back in the news, courtesy of a rambling article by Ta-Nehisi Coates at The Atlantic that generated a lot of attention. The idea has lots and lots of large practical problems, though is not on its face ridiculous.  (I’m not the only conservative who thinks this: see Seth Mandel at Commentary.com.)  The labor of generations of slaves was stolen by force, which »

Brown v. Board at 60

Featured image Stephan and Abigail Thernstrom rightly celebrate the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education today in the Wall Street Journal, and while I join them in thinking it the correct outcome of the case, it is a source of lasting mischief that the Supreme Court, led by the dubious new Chief Justice Earl Warren, decided the case on entirely non-constitutional grounds–a sorry fact the Thernstroms note briefly. Say what? »

Adegbile nomination comes down to the wire, Part Two [UPDATE – The nomination fails]

Featured image The nomination of Debo Adegbile — best known for leading the contemptible race-baiting defense of cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal — to head the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division will be voted on today. It looks likes the vote will be close. I’m told that Joe Biden is on the scene in case he has to break a tie vote. It’s not too late (but will be very soon) to make your »

Adegbile nomination comes down to the wire

Featured image We wrote here, here, and here about the nomination of Debo Adegbile to head the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. John put it best: Adegbile is a race hustler who is best known as the mouthpiece for guilty-as-hell cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal. The “free Mumia” movement is one of the most disgraceful episodes in the history of modern leftism, and Debo Adegbile was not just a participant in, but a ringleader »

FBI Agents revolt against Eric Holder

Featured image First it was the Justice Department’s career prosecutors; now it’s FBI agents. The federal employees responsible for fighting crime are simply unable to digest the anti-law enforcement slop being served up by their boss, Attorney General Holder. The FBI’s beef is with the selection of Debo Adegbile as Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. The FBI Agents Association’s opposition is based on the way in which Adegbile defended, »

Equal, Separate But Equal, or Equally Separate?

Featured image Next Monday is Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday, and I just got off the phone with a reporter doing a story about it who wonders whether I or any other conservatives thought King’s teachings still had any “relevance” for today.  I explained that King’s thoughts about the permanence of the “title deeds” of the American Founding in the “I Have A Dream” speech, and his embrace of the long natural »