Trump Promises Taxpayer Money For Religious Schools


Trump Promises Taxpayer Money For Religious Schools

Trump’s school choice plan will fund private religious schools and destroy secular public education in the United States. During his address before a joint session…

by Michael Stone
Read more

Mike Pence Used Personal Email As Governor And Was Hacked


Mike Pence Used Personal Email As Governor And Was Hacked

The White House Thursday night found itself in a controversy involving Vice President Mike Pence’s use of a personal email account while governor, just hours after Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from any investigations that may involve the Trump campaign and Russia.

The Indianapolis Star reported that Pence used a personal email account for official Indiana business while governor ― and that the account was hacked by a low-level scammer last summer. Pence was a harsh critic of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton during the presidential campaign for using a private email account during her time as secretary of state.

Here’s how Clinton’s former press secretary reacted to the news.

Former NBA All Star Amar’e Stoudemire says he would AVOID a teammate if he found out he was gay


‘I’m going to shower across the street’: Former NBA All Star Amar’e Stoudemire says he would AVOID a teammate if he found out he was gay

  • Amar’e Stoudemire told Israeli news site that he would avoid a gay teammate
  • The former NBA star has been playing for Hapoel Jerusalem Basketball Club
  • He said ‘there’s always truth within a joke’ when asked about his comments
  • Stoudemire was fined $50,000 in 2012 after tweeting a gay slur during the offseason 
  • Openly gay athlete, John Amaechi, said Stoudemire should not ‘flatter himself’ 

Former NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire has come under fire after suggesting he would avoid a teammate if he found out he was gay.

The ex- New York Knicks forward, who joined Hapoel Jerusalem Basketball Club in 2016, told Israeli news site Walla Sport, that he would be uncomfortable around a homosexual teammate.

The news site interviewed multiple Israeli basketball players on their thoughts on having a gay player on their team.

Former NBA star Amar'e Stoudemire told Israeli media he would be uncomfortable if he had a gay teammate 

Former NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire told Israeli media he would be uncomfortable if he had a gay teammate

‘I’m going to shower across the street, make sure my change of clothes are around the corner,’ Stoudemire said.

‘And I’m going to drive…take a different route to the gym,’ he added.

When the reporter asked the 34-year-old if his comments were in jest, Stoudemire said: ‘I mean, there’s always a truth within a joke.’

Other players interviewed said a homosexual teammate would not bother them.

‘No, I don’t have a problem with it at all,’ one said. Another said a gay teammate would not be an issue if ‘as long as he didn’t mess’ with him.

John Amaechi, 46, who is openly gay, criticized the basketball player for his comments

Amaechi said Stoudemire should not 'flatter himself'

John Amaechi, 46, who is openly gay, criticized the basketball player for his comments and said Stoudemire should not ‘flatter himself’

Ex-NBA player, and openly gay athlete, John Amaechi has slammed Stoudemire for his homophobic comments.

‘These are serious times and we need serious people to lead important conversations, not petulant man-children spouting puerile prejudice,’ Amaechi told TMZ Sports.

‘There is already one too many of those holding court in the media, and the world is poorer for it. Within the world of sport there are plenty of true role models, on and off the floor, whose words are carefully chosen to uplift and integrate society not join Trump and his grinning cabal in their ‘locker room banter.’

‘In these tumultuous times, these true role models are the men and women whose voices we need to disseminate to every corner, not a braying jacka** making a desperate grab for relevance amongst a constituency destined for extinction.

‘Lastly, could someone please tell this man to stop flattering himself. It’s embarrassing.’

In 2012, Stoudemire was ordered to pay $50,000 after tweeting a gay slur at another user during the Knicks off-season.

He later addressed the incident in a statement and apologized to his fans, ESPN reported.

 ‘I am a huge supporter of civil rights for all people,’ he said.

‘I am disappointed in myself for my statement to a fan. I should have known better and there is no excuse.’

Supreme Court hears arguments on social media use by sex offenders


Supreme Court hears arguments on social media use by sex offenders

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] heard oral arguments on Monday in Packingham v. North Carolina and Esquivel-Quintana v. Sessions [SCOTUSBlog reports]. In Packingham [transcript, PDF] the court considered whether a law that bans the use of social media for registered sex offenders is permissible under First Amendment precedent. In the case at hand, petitioner, a registered sex offender, was arrested for a Facebook post in which he celebrated the dismissal of a traffic ticket. Petitioner argued that the North Carolina law preventing the use of social media is “a stark abridgment of Freedom of Speech.” First he argues that it prohibits conduct unrelated to the preventative purpose of the statute citing the fact that the accused activity had no dealings with minors. Petitioner also argued that in today’s society, social media is a main platform for communication that cannot be barred in its entirety under the First Amendment. Petitioner also made the distinction between creating a statute that prevents this conduct for life for all sex offenders versus conditions of parole in specific circumstances, which are appropriate under First Amendment considerations. Respondent in turn argued that the ban of social media is simply the next step in today’s society. For years, states have banned sex offenders from places where children congregate such as schools, playgrounds and parks. With the advancement in social media, it is a necessary step for the state to also ensure sex offenders do not partake in virtual places where children now spend their time.

In Esquivel-Quintana [transcript, PDF] the court heard arguments on whether consensual intercourse between a 21-year-old and a person who is almost 18 constitutes “sexual abuse of a minor,” which is an aggravated felony. Under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) [INA index], such a conviction constitutes grounds for mandatory removal. Petitioner in the case argued that a definition of sexual abuse as is related to age has a general cutoff of 16 years old or younger. Petitioner stated that while the statue itself did not prescribe an age requirement, various state precedent as well as Congress’s use of the same language in another criminal statute make it clear that 16 is the required age for sexual abuse. Respondent replied that as the definition is vague that the Attorney General and the Board of Immigration Appeals, who were given authority over administering and interpreting the INA should be shown deference in their judgment. Furthermore, Respondent argued that a multi-jurisdiction survey for the definition of “sexual abuse” was inappropriate as compared to a general dictionary definition for the interpretation of a minor as well as defining abuse as a type of activity that regardless of consent, “contain[s] the potential for harm or risk because of … the relationship between the parties involved.”

Pennsylvania federal judge rules transgender students can use bathroom of choice


Pennsylvania federal judge rules transgender students can use bathroom of choice

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] on Monday in favor of three transgender students at Pine-Richland High School [official website] and ordered the school district to allow students to use the bathroom of their choice. Judge Mark Hornak granted a preliminary injunction to the students as they sought to stop the school district’s new policy that was adopted in September to provide sex-specific bathrooms or single-user bathrooms. The complaint [text, PDF] alleged a violation of the students’ civil rights. Hornak ruled that the students had a reasonable claim under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment but not on a Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 claim at this time.

Anti-discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity has been a controversial issue in recent months. North Carolina has been of particular focus due to their so-called “bathroom bill” (HB2) [text, PDF] that requires transgender people to use public bathrooms according to the sex listed on their birth certificate. Earlier this week North Carolina lawmakers filed [JURIST report] a bipartisan bill aimed at breaking the impasse over the bill. Also this week, the US Supreme Court asked [JURIST report] both sides of the Gloucester County School Board case to submit letters discussing how the case should proceed in light of the Trump administration’s revocation of the Obama-era guidance on school transgender bathroom policies.

Federal appeals court allows immigration order appeal to proceed


Federal appeals court allows immigration order appeal to proceed

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Monday denied [order, PDF] a request to stay the appeal regarding President Donald Trump’s controversial immigration executive order [text]. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] requested [JURIST report] a hold on the court proceedings until Trump issues a new order on immigration. Minnesota and Washington opposed the request, claiming that the Trump administration has stated that the standing executive order will not be rescinded, and that the government plans to defend the order in court. The court sided with the states, denying the DOJ’s request without explanation or opinion. The court did extend the briefing schedule in the appeals case, giving until the end of March for mandatory briefs to be filed.

Earlier this month the appeals court upheld [JURIST report] a lower court decision issuing a stay on the executive orders pending proceedings. Trump’s executive order has faced numerous legal challenges across the country. Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson sued [JURIST report] Trump over the immigration order in late January. Days later, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a class action lawsuit [JURIST report] accusing the Trump administration of violating the religious freedom of nationals from the seven nations named in the order. In February, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals received two separate filings [JURIST report] from officials in the public and private sectors who oppose the executive order.

gun rights advocates can publish lawmakers’ information


Federal judge: gun rights advocates can publish lawmakers’ information

[JURIST] Gun rights advocates are allowed to publish personal information, such as addresses and telephone numbers, of legislators who voted in favor of California’s recent gun control laws, a federal judge ruled [opinion, PDF] Monday. Chief Judge Lawrence O’Neill of the US District Court for the Eastern District of California [official website] issued a preliminary injunction against California Government Code § 6254.21(c) [text, PDF], which is being challenged by the Firearms Policy Coalition [advocacy website]. The statute allows public officials to make a written demand that their personal information not be displayed if they are being threatened or fear for the safety. The court found that the factors necessary to grant a preliminary injunction were present: “For the foregoing reasons, the Court finds that Plaintiffs are likely to succeed on their claims that § 6254.21(c) violates the First Amendment as applied to them, and also violates the dormant Commerce Clause as applied to Hoskins. The Court further finds that the remaining preliminary injunction factors weigh in Plaintiffs’ favor.”

Gun control remains a divisive issue [JURIST op-ed], according to Allen Rostron [official profile] of the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law [official website]. In February the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled [JURIST report] that Maryland’s assault weapons ban is constitutional. The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh District earlier this month overturned Florida’s 2011 Firearms Owners’ Privacy Act (FOPA), also referred to as the “Docs vs. Glocks” law. Also in February the US Senate voted [JURIST report] to reverse an Obama-era gun regulation that required mental health information to be shared with the national gun background check system. The New Hampshire House of Representatives approved [JURIST report] a bill [SB 12 text] that would repeal the law prohibiting state citizens from carrying concealed firearms without a permit.

%d bloggers like this: