• Heritage Action
  • Heritage Libertad
  • More
  • Commentary posted August 21, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Marriage policy should be worked out in states

    News about court cases that involve same-sex marriages usually travels fast. But when a judge in Tennessee recently upheld that state's constitutional authority to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman, it went almost unnoticed. The case involved a same-sex couple married in Iowa that sought a divorce in Tennessee. Because Tennessee does not recognize…

  • Commentary posted July 23, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Four Problems and a Response to Obama’s LGBT Executive Order

    Earlier Monday, President Obama issued an executive order barring federal contractors from what it describes as “discrimination” on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. Employers should respect the intrinsic dignity of all of their employees, but as I explain in greater detail at the Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal, today’s executive order undermines…

  • Commentary posted July 15, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson The Right to Be Wrong

    One of the hallmarks of religious liberty protections is that they protect people of all faiths, even if their beliefs seem unfounded, flawed, implausible, or downright silly. Recognition of a right to religious freedom does not, however, depend on religious skepticism, relativism, or indifferentism. Rather, it rests on the intelligible value of the religious quest—the…

  • Commentary posted June 19, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson, Sarah Torre Bear Witness to the Truth about Unborn Human Life

    While it is a self-evident truth that all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, including the right to life, what is self-evident in the technical philosophical sense is not always readily assented to, or immediately obvious. In many ways this is the story of debates throughout American history, and it is true today in the…

  • Commentary posted May 22, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Marriage: Where Do We Go From Here?

    In the media’s portrayal, people defending marriage as the union of a man and woman have been getting routed ever since the Supreme Court decision last June — if not before. They point to a string of lower-court rulings striking down state marriage amendments and to public-opinion polling, especially of my peers in the Millennial generation. Many also point to the forced…

  • Commentary posted May 17, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson The Evolution of Marriage

    ‘A girl for every boy, a boy for every girl”: That’s the main thesis of William Tucker’s engaging new book. With polygamy, you see, there isn’t a girl for every boy, and the leftover boys must find some other — usually disruptive and frequently violent — way to pass their time. But the “unique social contract of monogamy — a male for every female, a female for every male…

  • Commentary posted May 5, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Freedom to Marry & Dissent, Rightly Understood

    Historically and across cultures, marriage has been the institution that unites a man and woman as husband and wife to be father and mother to children born of their union, providing their offspring with the distinctive contributions of paternal and maternal care and influence. That understanding of marriage shaped its structuring norms, including the norm of sexual…

  • Lecture posted April 28, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson A New Time for Choosing on Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: Today’s Challenges to the Principles of Ronald Reagan’s Conservative Manifesto

    Ryan T. Anderson The more things change, the more they stay the same. Rereading “A Time for Choosing,” it is amazing to see just how much things haven’t changed. Ronald Reagan expresses concern that government taxes too much of our incomes, that government spends more than it raises, that government is transforming into a welfare state that’s trapping the poor, that…

  • Backgrounder posted April 10, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson, Leslie Ford Protecting Religious Liberty in the State Marriage Debate

    For years, a central argument of those in favor of same-sex marriage has been that all Americans should be free to live and love as they choose, but does that freedom require the government to coerce those who disagree into celebrating same-sex relationships? A growing number of incidents demonstrates that the redefinition of marriage and state policies on sexual…

  • Backgrounder posted April 4, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Marriage, Reason, and Religious Liberty: Much Ado About Sex, Nothing to Do with Race

    Is opposition to same-sex marriage at all like opposition to interracial marriage? One refrain in debates over marriage policy is that laws designating marriage as exclusively the union of male and female are today's equivalent of bans on interracial marriage. Some further argue that protecting the freedom to speak and act publicly on the basis of a religious belief that…

  • Commentary posted February 19, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson ‘Homosexual Jim Crow Laws’? Get Real

    “Christians backing this bill are essentially arguing for homosexual Jim Crow laws.” So asserts Kirsten Powers in today’s USA Today. What could justify such an assertion? Nothing. Powers is wrong about the law. The bill in question is a religious-liberty protection being debated in the Kansas legislature. The bill would protect all citizens from being forced by the…

  • Commentary posted February 18, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson, Leslie Ford Bake Us a Cake, or Else!

    For years now, a central argument of those in favor of same-sex marriage has been that all Americans should be free to live and love how they choose. But does that freedom require the government to coerce those who disagree into celebrating same-sex relationships? A growing number of incidents show that the redefinition of marriage and state policies on sexual…

  • Backgrounder posted January 15, 2014 by Sarah Torre, Ryan T. Anderson Adoption, Foster Care, and Conscience Protection

    Foster care and adoption policy should put the best interests of children first. In any given year, hundreds of thousands of children spend time in the U.S. foster care system, a quarter of them seeking adoption into a loving family. Yet many of these children bounce from home to home, never adopted, and enter adult life without any family ties. Public policy therefore…

  • Backgrounder posted November 1, 2013 by Ryan T. Anderson ENDA Threatens Fundamental Civil Liberties

    America is dedicated to protecting First Amendment freedoms while respecting citizens’ equality before the law. None of these freedoms is absolute: Strong governmental interests can at times trump fundamental civil liberties. But the Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2013 (ENDA) does not satisfy any such interest; rather, it tramples First Amendment rights and…

  • Commentary posted October 31, 2013 by Ryan T. Anderson The ENDA Agenda

    The Senate is expected to move forward soon on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, or ENDA (S. 815). Since ENDA is terrible public policy, conservatives and libertarians are right to raise principled objections. Part of the genius of the American system of government is our commitment to protecting the liberty and First Amendment freedoms of all citizens while…