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  • Commentary posted October 28, 2014 by Ryan T. Anderson Ignore Your Conscience -- or Go to Jail

    It's hard to imagine a more bedrock American right than being free to live according to your religious convictions. The very idea of being forced to violate your beliefs seems unthinkable. Unless you happen to believe that marriage refers exclusively to the union of a man and a woman. Because more and more often, the government is penalizing and coercing those who…

  • Commentary posted September 30, 2014 by Edwin Meese III, Ryan T. Anderson Let States, Not Courts, Decide Marriage Policy

    On June 26 of last year, the Supreme Court struck down Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act in United States v. Windsor, and since then lower courts have issued a string of decisions redefining marriage in the states. This month, in a widely celebrated opinion written by Judge Richard Posner, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit declared that it had…

  • Commentary posted September 23, 2014 by Robert Rector The War on Poverty: 50 years of failure

    This year marks the 50th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson's launch of the War on Poverty. In January 1964, Johnson declared "unconditional war on poverty in America." Since then, the taxpayers have spent $22 trillion on Johnson's war. Adjusted for inflation, that's three times the cost of all military wars since the American Revolution. Last year, government…

  • Commentary posted September 18, 2014 by Sarah Torre Watering Down Religious Freedom to ‘Freedom to Worship’

    The right to live, work and worship according to one’s faith is a freedom foundational to the United States. Many of the first settlers, having faced religious persecution in England, sought a place where they could freely worship and live according to their conscience without interference from the government. The Founders were clear, and the Bill of Rights makes it…

  • Commentary posted September 18, 2014 by Robert Rector Miscounting Poverty Again: The War On Poverty After Fifty Years

    Today the U.S. Census Bureau released its annual poverty report. The report is noteworthy because this year is the 50th anniversary of President Johnson’s launch of the War on Poverty. But this morning, the Census Bureau reported that 14.5 percent of Americans were poor in 2013. This is essentially the same rate as in 1966, two years after the War on Poverty was…

  • Backgrounder posted September 15, 2014 by Robert Rector, Rachel Sheffield The War on Poverty After 50 Years

    This week, the U.S. Census Bureau is scheduled to release its annual poverty report. The report will be notable because this year marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. In his January 1964 State of the Union address, Johnson proclaimed, “This administration today, here and now, declares unconditional war on poverty in…

  • 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 August 6, 2014 by Robert Rector Welfare State Grows as Self-Sufficiency Declines

    For the past 50 years, the government's annual poverty rate has hardly changed at all. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 15 percent of Americans still live in poverty, roughly the same rate as the mid-1960s when the War on Poverty was just starting. After adjusting for inflation, federal and state welfare spending today is 16 times greater than it was when President…

  • 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 July 8, 2014 by Jennifer A. Marshall, Sarah Torre RFRA Worked the Way It Was Supposed To in Hobby Lobby

    Today an important religious- liberty law did what it was supposed to do. In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) provided the Supreme Court with a mechanism for weighing competing claims in our pluralistic society. The Court determined that we can, in fact, balance seemingly conflicting interests without throwing out religious…

  • 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 Six Things You Can Do to Support Marriage and Freedom

    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 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…