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DISCRIMINATION

Catholic School Bans Kindergartener Because His Parents Are Gay

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A Kansas Catholic school has decided a prospective kindergarten student will not be admitted because his parents are in a same-sex relationship. Many in the local community are angered – so angered that the Archdiocese that runs the school has been publicly forced to defend its decision, a defense many are not supporting.

Father Craig Maxim from St. Ann Catholic Church in Prairie Village, Kansas, sent a letter to parishioners, CBS News reports, saying he “sought the advice of the archdiocese since as a parochial school we are subject to the guidance of the archdiocese on the application of church doctrine.”

“The archdiocese advised against admission,” Father Maxim told parents.

The school’s superintendent Kathy O’Hara said in a statement, “Church’s teaching on marriage is clear and is not altered by the laws of civil society.” Her statement clearly implies being gay is a “choice.”

Many are speaking out, as The Kansas City Star reports.

Over 1000 Catholics from St. Ann’s and surrounding parishes have signed a petition, a moving letter to Archbishop Joseph Naumann, urging the Archdiocese to reconsider and enroll the young student.

The Kansas City Star Editorial Board published a strong and lengthy, albeit respectful, rebuke of the Archdiocese’s decision, noting that while legally they have every right to deny the student, it appears they are “playing favorites among sinners.”

It asks, “Does the school admit the children of parents who aren’t Catholic? Check. What about those who may have had vasectomies, undergone in vitro fertilization, or divorced and remarried without church annulment? Check, check and check.”

The Board did not stop there.

“It’s also just reality that some heterosexual relationships that may appear ‘traditional’ on the surface can be anything but,” the editors wrote. “Who knows whether this male-female couple has an agreement that girl- or boyfriends on the side are A-OK? Or if those couples entered into marriages of convenience for reasons of inheritance, citizenship or social status? The school might see parents’ genders, but it can’t look inside their hearts — or their home lives.”

The family that is being discriminated against wishes to remain anonymous and have not responded in public.

 

Photo: Archbishop Naumann
Image by Scott Maentz via Flickr and a CC license

 

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DISCRIMINATION

Georgetown Law Professor: Top Broadcaster ‘Likely’ Killed Interview Because Buttigieg Is Gay

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A prominent Georgetown Law professor says Cumulus Media likely blocked an interview one of its country music station hosts had conducted with Pete Buttigieg from airing because the Democratic presidential candidate is gay.

After Huffpost reported that Blair Garner had been told by Cumulus Media he could not air any part of his interview with Buttigieg, Cumulus – the number three broadcaster in the nation of AM and FM radio stations – claimed the decision was based on the “equal time rule.”

Many quickly blasted Cumulus online.

But Talking Points Memo reached out to an expert, Georgetown Law Professor Andrew Schwartzman, who details his explanation but sums it up by saying Cumulus “likely” blocked the interview because Buttigieg is gay.

Schwartzman, a noted media attorney, told TPM the “equal time rule” does not apply to legitimate interviews.

“This was almost certainly a bona fide news interview,” Schwartzman says. “If another candidate asked for equal opportunity, equal time, the station could say no.”

TPM says Cumulus blocked the interview “under false pretenses.”

“This is much more likely to be about Cumulus not wanting to be seen as promoting a candidate who may not be particularly consonant with the proclivities of country station listeners since he is — how should we put this — gay,” Prof. Schwartzman concludes.

If there are any questions about Schwartzman’s bona fides, his stellar bio at Georgetown should put those to rest. It includes this:

From 1978 through 2012, Schwartzman headed Media Access Project (MAP). MAP was a non-profit public interest telecommunications law firm which represented the public in promoting the First Amendment rights to speak and to hear. It sought to promote creation of a well informed electorate by insuring vigorous debate in a free marketplace of ideas. It was the chief legal strategist in efforts to oppose major media mergers and preserve policies promoting media diversity.

 

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DISCRIMINATION

WATCH: Minnesota Mayor Angrily Chastises LGBTQ Locals After She Refuses to Sign Gay Pride Proclamation

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Columbia Heights, Minnesota Mayor Donna Schmitt has signed proclamations for Arbor Day, National Library Week, Polish American Heritage Month, and even for a local pastor. She recently supported the “second annual Peace Fest, put on by the Science of Spirituality,” but she steadfastly is refusing to sign a gay pride proclamation, and the local LGBTQ community is speaking out.

During Monday’s city council meeting Mayor Schmitt angrily chastised LGBTQ citizens, banging and waving her gavel at them and threatening to “ask some of you to leave,” as video from Fox 9 (below) shows.

“You don’t need a piece of paper from me,” Mayor Schmitt told LGBTQ residents Monday.

The Columbia Heights Pride Organization and other groups tried for weeks to get the mayor to recognize this upcoming Saturday’s LGBTQ Awareness Day and Pride festival. It wasn’t until last week that they finally got to talk with her, and her answer was no.

The mayor claims the group did not follow proper guidelines, and as a result she was unable to sign a proclamation for them.

But Mayor Schmitt admitted to a local news station that those guidelines were developed the same week that the LGBTQ groups began asking for the proclamation.

“It is not about a group, it’s about, let’s follow the guidelines,” Schmitt told ABC 5. “They can go out and celebrate, they are more than welcome to rent our parks and have a family friendly event as they have requested.”

And after Monday’s city council meeting Mayor Schmitt went after the LGBTQ citizens.

“I just hope they realize, they don’t represent everyone in the city either,” she said.

 

Watch:

 

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DISCRIMINATION

Federally-Funded Catholic Adoption Agency Blocks Same-Sex Couple From Fostering Migrant Children, Because Jesus

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A Texas adoption agency that receives federal taxpayer funds is refusing to allow a lesbian couple to become foster parents, and they’re citing their religious beliefs to support their discriminatory decision.

Bryn Esplin and Fatma Marouf, who are married and are both professors at Texas A&M University, were told by the agency because they’re a same-sex couple they don’t “mirror the holy family,” and thus would not allow them to foster some of the thousands of migrant and refugee children the federal government is detaining.

The women pressed, saying that surely some of the 700 children under the agency’s care were LGBT and would benefit from being placed with a married lesbian couple, as The Daily Beast reports.

Catholic Charities told them not a single child, out of 700, were LGBT.

Statistically, that’s impossible.

Lambda Legal, which is representing the couple, Esplin and Marouf, called the claim by Catholic Charities “astounding,” and added that “means that the LGBT kids in the program are being discriminated against on a daily basis.”

After months of trying, they decided to sue the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), which runs the agency, Catholic Charities of Fort Worth. The couple just won an important initial victory. The court says they have standing. They are suing charging violations of their First, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights, as Metro Weekly reports.

Related: US Justice Dept. Tells Court Migrant Children in Federal Concentration Camps Don’t Need Soap or Toothbrushes

“We were really open in terms of taking in a sibling set, in terms of age of the child—we didn’t really have any specific thing we were looking for,” Marouf told The Daily Beast. “We just felt like we could provide a good home, and there were hundreds of kids needing it in this area, so it just seemed like something we could do.”

President Donald Trump and his administration have worked to grant religious entities and people of faith increasingly greater rights to discriminate, especially against LGBT people. HHS’s Office of Civil Rights, headed by Roger Severino, is working on a plan to rescind Obama-era regulations that ban this exact type of discrimination by adoption agencies.

RELATED STORIES:

GOVERNOR SIGNS ‘RELIGIOUS FREEDOM’ LAW ALLOWING ADOPTION AGENCIES TO DISCRIMINATE AGAINST GAY COUPLES

TRUMP USES NATIONAL PRAYER BREAKFAST SPEECH TO UNDERMINE CIVIL RIGHTS OF LGBT PEOPLE

NEW ANTI-DISCRIMINATION BILLS PROTECTING LGBTQ PEOPLE WILL ‘BAN CHRISTIANITY’ SAY FEAR-MONGERING CONSERVATIVES

 

Image: Lambda Legal

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