Archive for July 29th, 2010

“A Dangerous Precedent” by Michael G. Mickey

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

A federal judge today ruled in favor of Eastern Michigan University’s recent decision to remove a Christian student from its graduate program in school counseling because she refused to provide counseling for homosexual clients on the basis of her religious beliefs.

The student, Julea Ward, had filed a religious discrimination lawsuit against the school leading up to today’s court ruling after she was told by the school that she would “only be allowed to remain in the program if she went through a “remediation” program so that she could “see the error of her ways” and change her belief system about homosexuality”, according to a Fox News report.

The judge wrote the following, in part, in his decision (emphasis added mine), “In the case of Ms. Ward, the university determined that she would never change her behavior and would consistently refuse to counsel clients on matters with which she was personally opposed due to her religious beliefs – including homosexual relationships.”

For EMU to tell Miss Ward that she would have to change her “belief system” and “see the error of her ways” in order to continue obtaining her education was nothing short of asking her to deny the Word of God and, essentially, refute her Christian faith. The court did the same in this instance, the judge noting that Miss Ward’s sole reason for failing to comply with the university’s requirements was her Christian faith!

Make no mistake about it, today’s ruling has set a very dangerous precedent, endangering Christian students seeking higher education across the United States of America. For now, public universities, the majority of which are so liberal that Christian students are already ridiculed beyond what should be acceptable for refusing to believe in politically correct societal trends and scientific theories which fly in the face of God’s Word, are going to be able to require Christian students to compromise or, for all practical purposes, abandon their faith without fear of reprisal. While we can hope this was but an isolated incident, it’s hard for me to believe that greater persecution of Christian students isn’t going to occur on the heels of this ruling, which the Alliance Defense Fund is going to be appealing on behalf of Miss Ward.

For a long time now, Christians in the United States have avoided the sharp sting of persecution others have known in nations less free than our own, but the spirit of antichrist is flourishing in the hallowed halls of government and courtrooms all over our nation today. Should the Lord delay His coming much longer, there is little doubt in my mind that freedom of religion, as enshrined in our nation’s Constitution by our founding fathers, is going to be a thing of the past.

Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Original Link.

Court Upholds Expulsion of Counseling Student Who Opposes Homosexuality

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Christians are being forced to accept the world view in place of our morals and beliefs.

A federal judge has ruled in favor of a public university that removed a Christian student from its graduate program in school counseling over her belief that homosexuality is morally wrong. Monday’s ruling, according to Julea Ward’s attorneys, could result in Christian students across the country being expelled from public university for similar views.

“It’s a very dangerous precedent,” Jeremy Tedesco, legal counsel for the conservative Alliance Defense Fund, told FOX News Radio. “The ruling doesn’t say that explicitly, but that’s what is going to happen.”

U.S. District Judge George Caram Steeh dismissed Ward’s lawsuit against Eastern Michigan University. She was removed from the school’s counseling program last year because she refused to counsel homosexual clients.

The university contended she violated school policy and the American Counseling Association code of ethics.

“Christian students shouldn’t be expelled for holding to and abiding by their beliefs,” said ADF senior counsel David French. “To reach its decision, the court had to do something that’s never been done in federal court: uphold an extremely broad and vague university speech code.”

Original link.

SEC Says New Financial Regulation Law Exempts it From Public Disclosure

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Obama and the Democrats have stripped us of yet another one of our freedoms.

So much for transparency.

Under a little-noticed provision of the recently passed financial-reform legislation, the Securities and Exchange Commission no longer has to comply with virtually all requests for information releases from the public, including those filed under the Freedom of Information Act.

The law, signed last week by President Obama, exempts the SEC from disclosing records or information derived from “surveillance, risk assessments, or other regulatory and oversight activities.” Given that the SEC is a regulatory body, the provision covers almost every action by the agency, lawyers say. Congress and federal agencies can request information, but the public cannot.

That argument comes despite the President saying that one of the cornerstones of the sweeping new legislation was more transparent financial markets. Indeed, in touting the new law, Obama specifically said it would “increase transparency in financial dealings.”

The SEC cited the new law Tuesday in a FOIA action brought by FOX Business Network. Steven Mintz, founding partner of law firm Mintz & Gold LLC in New York, lamented what he described as “the backroom deal that was cut between Congress and the SEC to keep the SEC’s failures secret. The only losers here are the American public.”

If the SEC’s interpretation stands, Mintz, who represents FOX Business Network, predicted “the next time there is a Bernie Madoff failure the American public will not be able to obtain the SEC documents that describe the failure,” referring to the shamed broker whose Ponzi scheme cost investors billions.

“The new provision applies to information obtained through examinations or derived from that information,” said SEC spokesman John Nester. “We are expanding our examination program’s surveillance and risk assessment efforts in order to provide more sophisticated and effective Wall Street oversight. The success of these efforts depends on our ability to obtain documents and other information from brokers, investment advisers and other registrants. The new legislation makes certain that we can obtain documents from registrants for risk assessment and surveillance under similar conditions that already exist by law for our examinations. Because registrants insist on confidential treatment of their documents, this new provision also removes an opportunity for brokers, investment advisers and other registrants to refuse to cooperate with our examination document requests.”

Criticism of the provision has been swift. “It allows the SEC to block the public’s access to virtually all SEC records,” said Gary Aguirre, a former SEC staff attorney-turned-whistleblower who had accused the agency of thwarting an investigation into hedge fund Pequot Asset Management
in 2005. “It permits the SEC to promulgate its own rules and regulations regarding the disclosure of records without getting the approval of the Office of Management and Budget, which typically applies to all federal agencies.”

Original Link.