Thursday, May 12, 2016

Harvard Law Professor Says Treat Conservative Christians Like Nazis

The toad-like Tushnet

There's enough Leftist projection below to run a movie theater

Liberals, stop being so defensive. That’s the message of Harvard law professor Mark Tushnet in a new post at Balkinization, titled “Abandoning Defensive Crouch Liberal Constitutionalism.” The problem, according to Tushnet, is that liberals have been too defensive when it comes to advancing their agenda in the courts.

Tushnet blames what he calls the “culture wars” on conservatives, and he says liberals should now make conservatives pay.

Now that President Barack Obama has reshaped the federal judiciary, liberal causes can win easily in court. And now that Justice Antonin Scalia has died, “judges no longer have to be worried about reversal by the Supreme Court if they take aggressively liberal positions.”

Tushnet blames what he calls the “culture wars” on conservatives, and he says liberals should now make conservatives pay. “The culture wars are over; they lost, we won,” he writes in italics. Tushnet claims that conservatives “had opportunities to reach a cease fire, but rejected them in favor of a scorched earth policy.”

Since when have liberals been defensive? The scorched earth policy has been theirs. They’ve been the aggressors—they’ve been offensive. Conservatives have been defensive.

It seems hard to envision how conservatives could have declared a unilateral cease fire when they weren’t the ones firing in the first place. Liberals aggressively sought in the courts an unlimited abortion license, a redefinition of marriage, and now for transgender bathroom policies throughout the nation. Liberals haven’t been bashful to use the courts to reshape social policy when they couldn’t win at the polls.

It seems hard to envision how conservatives could have declared a unilateral cease fire as liberals aggressively sought in the courts for an unlimited abortion license.

So what’s next? Tushnet explains: “the question now is how to deal with the losers in the culture wars.” And his answer isn’t comforting: “My own judgment is that taking a hard line (‘You lost, live with it’) is better than trying to accommodate the losers.”

Tushnet explains his unwillingness to respect the rights of the “losers”: “Trying to be nice to the losers didn’t work well after the Civil War, nor after Brown. (And taking a hard line seemed to work reasonably well in Germany and Japan after 1945.)”

Ah, yes, if the “losers” of the American “culture wars” are the functional equivalent of racists and Nazis, then Tushnet’s argument works wonderfully. But if Orthodox Jews, Roman Catholics, Evangelical Christians, Latter-day Saints, faithful Muslims, and other Americans who believe that marriage is the union of a man and woman are decent members of society, maybe Tushnet should reconsider his hostility.

In my new book, “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom,” I argue that the question for people who believe marriage is the union of husband and wife is whether the government will treat us like pro-lifers or like racists. And I offer a roadmap on how to make it so that we’re recognized as people of reason and good will, like pro-lifers.

But, Tushnet makes it clear that he and his colleagues among the liberal elite want the government to treat conservative Christians worse than racists—like Nazis.

It’s our job to make sure that Tushnet doesn’t succeed. It’s what Americans did after Roe v. Wade. Congress and the states passed a variety of laws that protect pro-life conscience. In Roe v. Wade the Supreme Court invented a right to an abortion. But after Roe, legislatures made clear that government cannot require a pro-life doctor or nurse to perform an abortion—that they, too, had rights.

The same is true after the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage. Government has to treat two people of the same sex as married, but private schools, charities, businesses, and individuals should not have to abandon their beliefs.

Tushnet embodies a particularly vicious form of illiberal liberalism. But protecting the rights of a minority—his “losers”—in the wake of such change is an important feature of America’s tradition of tolerance in the midst of pluralism. It’s what real liberalism requires.

This is why federal legislation like the First Amendment Defense Act and state legislation like Mississippi’s Protecting Freedom of Conscience From Government Discrimination Act are so important. As I explain in “Truth Overruled,” good public policy is needed at the local, state, and federal levels to protect cherished American values.

When your neighbors are not in fact Nazis, you should favor public policies that help achieve civil peace amid reasonable disagreement. You should seek to protect pluralism and the rights of all Americans—including the “losers.”


Anger at 'praise Allah' slogans on British buses after the Lord's Prayer advert is banned from nation's biggest cinema chains

Buses across the country are to carry a slogan praising Allah – just months after cinemas banned an advert featuring the Lord's Prayer.

Hundreds of buses will carry posters bearing the words 'Subhan Allah', which means 'Glory be to God' in Arabic, for an ad campaign paid for by the charity Islamic Relief.

The posters will appear in London, Manchester, Leicester, Birmingham and Bradford, which have large Muslim communities.

It has been timed to coincide with the holy month of Ramadan in June, when Muslims traditionally fast and give to charity.

But last night, Christian groups asked why the Islamic adverts had been approved when a one-minute film by the Church of England was banned by Britain's biggest cinema chains at Christmas.

Odeon, Cineworld and Vue refused to show an advert featuring the Archbishop of Canterbury and members of the public reciting the Lord's Prayer. They banned the advertisement – which was due to be screened before the new Star Wars film in December – fearing it could offend movie-goers.

Simon Calvert, of the Christian Institute, said he hoped the Allah advert 'signals the beginning of a new era of greater expressions of the Christian faith, which seems to have become persona non grata'.

He added: 'People were surprised by the cinema advertising agenda to ban the Lord's Prayer – something we all grew up with.  'Audiences are capable of hearing expressions of Christian faith without running away screaming in horror.'

Former Tory MP Ann Widdecombe said: 'If other religions are allowed to put their religious banners up, then so should Christians.'

Andrea Williams, director of Christian Concern, said the decision to allow the Allah advert whilst banning Christian ones highlighted the power of political correctness. She added: 'Britain is a Christian country and we Christians need to find our voice. 'If we are allowing these adverts for Islam, then we need to give the Christians far more freedom to express themselves.'

Islamic Relief said the posters would help to raise funds for victims of war and disasters in countries such as Syria, and portray Islam in a positive light.  Director Imran Madden said: 'There is a lot of negativity around Muslims. We want to change the perception of Islam. The campaign is about breaking down barriers and challenging misconceptions.'

The slogans are most likely to resonate in London where about half of Britain's estimated three million Muslims live. The adverts will start running in the capital from May 23. 


Christian bakers appeal against ruling they broke law by refusing order for cake with pro-gay marriage slogan saying 'it would have been a sin' to make it

Christian bakers who refused to bake a 'pro-gay marriage' cake are appealing against a ruling that they broke the law.

Daniel McArthur, and his wife Karen, who run Ashers Baking Company, in Belfast, said it would be a 'sin' to create the treat which had been ordered by LGBT activist Gareth Lee.

Mr Lee wanted the cake, featuring Sesame Street puppets Bert and Ernie with the phrase 'Support Gay Marriage', for a private function marking the International Day Against Homophobia.

The born again Christians, whose shop has the slogan 'Come along inside. We'll see if teas and buns can make the world a better place', took the order but then decided not to supply the cake as it was against their beliefs.

Once the decision exploded onto social media it aroused the attention of the Northern Ireland Equality Commission, which launched legal proceedings.

Talking at a high profile hearing at Belfast County Court last March, Mr Lee told how he paid £36.50 for the cake but was telephoned two days later and told the company could not fulfil his demand.

In evidence Mrs McArthur said she knew in her heart she could not make the cake but had taken the order to avoid a confrontation in the shop.

Mr McArthur also told the court his family could not compromise their religious beliefs, despite the legal ramifications.

Mr Lee, a member of the LGBT advocacy group Queer Space, was upset by the ordeal and said the incident had made him feel like a 'lesser person'.

The Ashers' owners were ordered to pay £500 damages after a County Court judge ruled they directly discriminated against Mr Lee and said religious beliefs could not dictate the law.

The bakers are now battling to overturn the judgement and claim that the case has implications for the freedom of expression across the UK.

Family barrister David Scoffield QC said: 'They could not in conscience provide a product with a message that was inconsistent with their deeply-held religious beliefs in circumstances where the evidence was clear that they believed that to do so would be sinful.' 

Mr Scoffield said the alleged discrimination was not against Mr Lee, it was against the message, but the law only covered harm caused to an individual.

He said: 'Discrimination must be against the person, not against an idea or an object. A cake cannot have a political opinion or a religious belief, it is a person who can do so.'

The firm's barrister said it was not contractually obliged to provide the cake, but added: 'This was not a refusal to sell a cake, it was about the refusal to sell this particular cake.'

He told the three senior judges the crucial question was why the order was not fulfilled.

He said: 'This case is an important case. It raises, we submit, an issue of principle. 'The issue is the extent to which those who hold such religious convictions can be required by the law to act in a manner inconsistent with their convictions.'

He added: 'It makes it extremely difficult for any business such as a printer or someone who, as we have seen in this case, creates T-shirts or creates cakes, to run any kind of bespoke service if faced with the position that someone could come through your door and order something which is clearly objectionable.'

The hearing continues and will hear submissions from a lawyer for Mr Lee.


The jobs that come in any colour you want, so long as it’s not white

Are you a UK National from a black, Asian, or non-white ethnic minority?  Then I have some great news for you. You are #BAME (British. Black, Asian, and minority ethnic) and you’ve got the job!  I completely understand. You have no qualifications. That doesn’t matter – school isn’t for everyone. Have a sticker for effort.

You aren’t legally disadvantaged? You aren’t adopted from care or on free school meals?  No problem. We’ve made up our own special definition of disadvantaged to include nearly everyone who can say they are BAME.

This very modern form of job discrimination boils down to something very simple which no one can bring themselves to put down in print. It doesn’t help to be white.

And if you are white and hard-working, or fortunate enough to live in a stable home, as Obama would say, you are at the very back of the queue, my friend.

And this is reflected in the stories in my inbox, from hundreds who have been discriminated against not because of their colour, but because of their lack of it.

Parents have been so disheartened seeing their pale-faced kids rejected on the grounds of lack of colour they have tried to have their story heard. But no one is interested because it’s not very BBC to talk about it.

One girl wrote to me about her experiences trying to get a job in the media industry. Every time she reached interview, she realised she was the lone pale face and knew she might as well turn around and walk out the door.

Another gentleman recounted his work in a call centre, fielding calls from people looking for a job with large public-sector organisations, reading scripted replies from a screen.

He recalls handling recruitment calls for the Metropolitan Police. If the caller said they were from an ethnic minority, a screen would come up for him to read – telling the candidate how to apply.

If they were unfortunate enough to be white, they were told ‘there are no vacancies at this time’. Imagine being that caller and not knowing another script was available if only you were black.

Another girl desperately wants to get into Law but opportunities are closed to her because she is white. Imagine - she says - if there was a City Law for White People. I have been interviewed under caution thanks to the Society for Black Lawyers so I'd like to see some balance too.

When I chanced upon an advert for an internship at the BBC, I thought it sounded like an excellent job for the young people I help when I can.

Production Management Assistant Internship – BBC Current Affairs. A 12-month post with a ‘bursary’ of £16,881. The application deadline is May 10, if you are interested.

One caveat, however: the role is ONLY open to UK Nationals who are black, Asian or of non-white ethnic minority.

Well, a caveat and a snag, actually: the role is based in Salford. And Salford has about as much personality as Katherine Jenkins.

But therein lies another curiosity. When I spoke to the founder of Creative Access, the ‘charity’ operating this discriminatory racket, he quoted endless figures about the under-representation of BAME candidates in media companies in the capital. In London 42 per cent of graduates are non-white. Yet minority representation in the Creative Industries is just 5.4 per cent.

However, if you take a step back from these handpicked figures, in the UK as a whole our population is 86 per cent white and 14 per cent BAME.

Only a small percentage of this 14 per cent would wish to be involved in an industry so perpetually self-obsessed and narcissistic as the media, as Chris Evans evidences so splendidly.

By chance, the founder of Creative Access is also Chris Evans’s agent. Curiouser and curiouser.

Many of the 14 per cent BAME individuals in the UK are far smarter than media studies courses require and aim far higher - as the diversity amongst NHS consultants testifies.

The founder of Creative Access was concerned I might write about the work of his business – sorry, charity – in a negative light.

And I do respect the fact many interns have secured places entirely because they have the support of an agency and the 30 per cent contribution to the employer for the wages of the intern they take.

But whatever the positive outcomes for a minority, and despite the names of journalists and worthies clamouring to be acknowledged as members of the board, I think these practices are fundamentally wrong.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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