Trump Nominates Lawyers from Anti-LGBT ‘Religious Freedom’ Group to be Texas Federal Judges

By Michael Barajas

Jeff Mateer and Matthew Kacsmaryk have worked to erode the firewall between church and state as lawyers for the First Liberty Institute, a Christian legal advocacy group that protects pastors who mobilize their flock to overturn local non-discrimination ordinances, county clerks who refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses and anti-abortion centers that trick women into thinking they’re walking into actual medical clinics.

Trump’s nomination of the two religious-right legal activists to vacant federal judge seats in Texas has rattled LGBT rights groups, who call the appointments a gift to anti-LGBT activists.

“First Liberty Institute has used anti-LGBTQ policies to blatantly vilify our families and neighbors for two decades,” Equality Texas said in a Friday statement. “By nominating associates of this hate group, the president is using his office in an attempt to ensure policies will be created and spearheaded to advance anti-LGBTQ discrimination in employment, housing and places of business all under the guise of protecting religious liberties.”

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9 COMMENTS

  1. @OP- Trump’s nomination of the two religious-right legal activists to vacant federal judge seats in Texas has rattled LGBT rights groups, who call the appointments a gift to anti-LGBT activists.

    It appears to be standard Trump policies to appoint ignorant bigots who qualify as the most inappropriate candidates for the specialist jobs the appointments require!

  2. anti-abortion centers that trick women into thinking they’re walking into actual medical clinics

    -huh? Where are these? I get angry every time I think of people being allowed to stand around protesting/bothering women trying to enter actual abortion clinics. It’s insane, it should be illegal.

    If this is true, it’s evil.

  3. Sean, some of these anti-abortion asshole-fanatics have killed doctors. So is that kind of trickery so farfetched? (I never heard of that either, but I don’t doubt it.)

    This country appears to be going down the tube. Dawkins put it well in a recent interview: “over 300 million people in the US and Trump is elected president. Something’s very wrong with the system…” Paraphrasing. Forgot exactly how he put it.

    Trump is an agent of destruction and everyone who works with him and around him, and everyone he nominates or hires, is an agent of destruction. Corruption on an unprecedented scale. Bigotry, greed, ignorance, nativism, pandering, scapegoating, political reaction, lies, denigrating the press, collusion with big banks and big corporations… It’s the pits. Right now we are in a very dark place. It’s very sad. And Bannon (who still loves Trump) is a sick, twisted, fat pseudo-intellectual, a piece of shit. Pruitt is a monster. These people are the worst. Bad, bad people.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/10/business/trump-regulations-religious-conservatives.html

    The Trump administration opened the door to allowing more firearms on federal lands. It scrubbed references to “L.G.B.T.Q. youth” from the description of a federal program for victims of sex trafficking. And, on the advice of religious leaders, it eliminated funding to international groups that provide abortion.

    While these initiatives lacked the fanfare of some of President Trump’s high-profile proclamations — like his ban on transgender people in the military — they point to a fundamental repurposing of the federal bureaucracy to promote conservative social priorities.

    The aggressive regulatory effort, which runs counter to the Trump administration’s less-is-more credo about government meddling, has led to policy changes related to gun ownership, gay rights, reproductive choices, immigration and other divisive political issues, according to a New York Times review of government documents and court records, as well as interviews with more than four dozen people involved in or briefed on the efforts.

    The overhaul is unfolding behind the scenes in Washington at agencies like the Health and Human Services Department, where new rules about birth control are being drafted, and in federal courtrooms, where the Justice Department has shifted gears in more than a dozen Obama-era cases involving social issues.

    The turnabout stems in part from lobbying by evangelical Christians and other conservative groups.

  4. @OP – Trump Nominates Lawyers from Anti-LGBT ‘Religious Freedom’ Group

    When it comes to rational thought, Trump appointees come from those befuddled with the contorted preconceptions of the evidence denying irrationality of “religious freeDUMB” group!

    We should remember that in the US, the creationist Liberty University, has a production line turning out accredited Law graduates! – (At bit like Saudi madrassas turning out Sharia “graduates”!)

  5. Sean_W #2
    Sep 11, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    anti-abortion centers that trick women into thinking they’re walking into actual medical clinics

    -huh? Where are these?
    I get angry every time I think of people being allowed to stand around protesting/bothering women trying to enter actual abortion clinics.
    It’s insane, it should be illegal.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/judystone/2016/05/07/health-care-denied-at-550-hospitals-because-of-catholic-doctrine/#3ab98e9d5ad9

    Healthcare Denied At 550 Hospitals Because Of Catholic Doctrine

    For pregnant women the term “CATHOLIC HEALTHCARE” is an oxymoron!

    A disturbing new report from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and MergerWatch, “Health Care Denied,” finds that one in six hospitals in the U.S. are operated in accordance with Catholic religious rules, known as the Ethical and Religious Directives (ERDs).

    While perhaps best known for prohibiting abortion, the restrictions go far beyond that, and impact more than reproductive health.

    For women, the impact can be deadly.

    Abortions are prohibited even if the fetus has no chance of survival and the mother’s life is in danger. Savita Halappanavar died of sepsis in Ireland because her physicians would neither terminate her doomed pregnancy to save her life, nor transfer her to a facility that would care of her. Tamesha Means was luckier. She survived. Despite starting to miscarry at 18 weeks’ gestation, she says that Mercy Health in Muskegon, Michigan, sent her home, denying her appropriate care and putting her life at risk. There are similar, less well-known cases here, detailed in the ACLU report. Not providing emergency care is a violation of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) requirement for hospitals that receive Medicare funding—and Catholic health systems receive billions in taxpayer dollars.

    In “Growth of Catholic Hospitals and Health Systems: 2016 update to ‘Miscarriage of Medicine’,” MergerWatch reports disturbing growth in Catholic-dictated health care. Between 2001 to 2016:

  6. @OP – “First Liberty Institute has used anti-LGBTQ policies
    to blatantly vilify our families and neighbors for two decades,”
    Equality Texas said in a Friday statement.

    Yep! The world’s religiously brain-addled, are full of the “faith” obstruction to learning, and consequently devoid of scientific or medical knowledge!

    [http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-41331922}(http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-41331922)

    Brazilian activists and celebrities have condemned a court ruling that approves a “cure” for gay people.

    Waldemar de Carvalho, a federal judge in the capital Brasilia, backed a psychologist who had her licence revoked for offering so-called “conversion therapy”.

    Rozangela Justino is an evangelical Christian who has called homosexuality “a disease”.

    Critics have called the ruling regressive and medically unsound.

    Brazil’s Federal Council of Psychology banned psychologists from offering treatments that claim to change people’s sexuality in 1999.

    It said in a statement that the decision “opens the dangerous possibility of the use of sexual reversion therapies” and promised to fight it in court.

    Prominent pop star Anitta shared her disgust in an online video, which has been watched by over a million people.

    “That’s what happens in my country. People dying, hungry, the government killing the country with corruption, no education, no hospitals, no opportunities… and the authorities are wasting their time to announce that homosexuality is a sickness,” she said.

    Yep! That sounds like basic Catholic theocracy!
    Of course with a ban starting in 1999, this judge has only had about 18 years to learn about the medical evidence, so perhaps that is just forcing too rapid a pace of learning for a theocrat confronted with medical science! 🙂

  7. @OP – Trump’s nomination of the two religious-right legal activists to vacant federal judge seats in Texas has rattled LGBT rights groups, who call the appointments a gift to anti-LGBT activists.

    It is a clear Trump strategy, to appoint reactionaries to pervert information and judgement systems so as to establish his “alternative facts”, abuse critics, and suppress objective information!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41423082

    Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has dismissed comments made by Donald Trump that the site has always been against him.

    The US president accused the social network of “collusion” on Twitter, branding it “anti-Trump”.

    He made the same claim against the New York Times and the Washington Post.

    Well anyone who is not a Trump cheerleader is considered “anti-Trump”, – especially those who challenge Trump’s loony appointments and “alternative facts”!

    Facebook will shortly hand over 3,000 political adverts to congressional investigators probing alleged Russian meddling in the US election.

    The site believes the ads were probably purchased by Russian entities during and after the 2016 presidential contest.

    Facebook, Twitter and Google have been asked to testify before the US Senate Intelligence Committee on 1 November about the allegations of Russian interference.

    Facebook and Google have confirmed they have received invitations to attend the committee hearing, but none of the social media giants have yet said they will be present.

    In a Facebook post responding to President Trump’s criticism, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he was striving to make “a platform for all ideas”. He said that aside from “problematic ads”, Facebook’s impact ranged from “giving people a voice, to enabling candidates to communicate directly, to helping millions of people vote”.

    He noted that both ends of the political spectrum were upset about content they disliked, and that liberals in the US had accused him of enabling Mr Trump’s victory.

    He said the candidates’ campaigns had “spent hundreds of millions advertising online,” which he called “1000x more than any problematic ads we’ve found”.

    The 33-year-old said he regretted saying on the day Mr Trump was elected that it was “crazy” to say that misinformation on Facebook changed the election’s outcome, because it sounded dismissive.

    He promised Facebook would “continue to build a community for all people” – and to “defend against nation states attempting to spread misinformation and subvert elections”.

    Mr Zuckerberg’s response attracted 65,000 “likes” within two hours of being posted.

    The Kremlin has long denied any form of interference in the US election, and Mr Trump has railed against allegations that his staff had improper links to Russia.

    However, US intelligence agencies have concluded Moscow tried to sway the vote in favour of Mr Trump.
    Congressional committees and an FBI inquiry are currently probing the matter.

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