Blog of Rights

Working Towards an LGBT-Inclusive Platform

Working Towards an LGBT-Inclusive Platform

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:28pm
On Thursday evening, BuzzFeed reported that the draft 2012 Democratic National Platform includes, as part of an overall endorsement of the freedom to marry for same-sex couples, a call for passage of the Respect for Marriage Act in Congress.  This important legislation would completely repeal the discriminatory so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and provide married gay and lesbian couples with certainty that, regardless of where they travel or move in the country, they will not be treated as legal strangers under federal law. 
History Is On Our Side: Why the Federal Contraception Rule is Constitutional

History Is On Our Side: Why the Federal Contraception Rule is Constitutional

By Brigitte Amiri, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project & Sarah Lipton-Lubet, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Anthony Rothert, Legal Director, ACLU of Eastern Missouri at 5:26pm

History has a way of repeating itself. Almost five decades ago a court in South Carolina considered a claim that a restaurant owner could refuse to serve African-American customers because integration of the races was against his religious beliefs. The…

A tipping point for Islamaphobia?

A tipping point for Islamaphobia?

By Tyler Ray, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 2:25pm

Have we finally reached an end to widespread Islamaphobia and religious discrimination in this country? Maybe not—but we may be reaching a turning point where bigotry becomes so blatant that it requires a response from across the political and…

War Against Women Rages On in the Federal Courts

War Against Women Rages On in the Federal Courts

By Alexa Kolbi-Molinas, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project at 2:00pm

It’s been an interesting few weeks for women’s rights and health in the courts. First, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the state can force a doctor to tell a patient that women who have abortions are more likely to commit suicide than those who continue the pregnancy even

Obama Promised to Stop Government-Funded Discrimination.  Has He?

Obama Promised to Stop Government-Funded Discrimination. Has He?

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:51pm

Four years ago last month, then-candidate Barack Obama promised to ensure that religious organizations that receive government funds to provide social services abide by the Constitution and are not allowed to discriminate with government funding. …

Court’s Ruling to Allow Employer to Discriminate Out of Step; Threatens Women’s Health

Court’s Ruling to Allow Employer to Discriminate Out of Step; Threatens Women’s Health

By Sarah Lipton-Lubet, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Brigitte Amiri, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project at 4:30pm

A federal court in Colorado today put a temporary halt on the implementation of the Obama administration’s contraceptive coverage rule, with respect to one company. The contraceptive coverage rule requires insurance plans to cover contraception…

Big Data: NSA, Facebook—and My University?

Big Data: NSA, Facebook—and My University?

By Bennett Stein, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 12:51pm

On Sunday, the New York Times published an extensive piece surveying the ways American universities are using their access to students’ information to tailor their college experiences. Universities collect a huge amount of data on their students—course…

Another One Bites the Dust: Second Challenge to Birth Control Rule Rejected in One Week

Another One Bites the Dust: Second Challenge to Birth Control Rule Rejected in One Week

By Sarah Lipton-Lubet, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 6:01pm

Courts are making fast work this week of the lawsuits challenging the Obama administration’s rule requiring insurance plans to cover contraception and stop discriminating against women.

Just one day after a federal court in Nebraska threw…

Religious Rites, Students’ Rights, and Rites of Passage

Religious Rites, Students’ Rights, and Rites of Passage

By Daniel Bullard-Bates, ACLU Program on Freedom of Religion and Belief at 1:04pm

For several years, the public high schools of Enfield, Connecticut held their graduation ceremony in the First Cathedral Church in nearby Bloomfield. Students, friends, and family entered the building under a large cross, passed through a lobby decorated…

One Down and 23 to Go: Judge Tosses Baseless Challenge to Birth Control Coverage

One Down and 23 to Go: Judge Tosses Baseless Challenge to Birth Control Coverage

By Sarah Lipton-Lubet, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Brigitte Amiri, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project at 4:53pm

Tuesday, a Nebraska federal court rejected a lawsuit challenging the Obama administration’s rule requiring insurance plans to cover contraception. This was the first of two dozen challenges to be decided.   We applaud the court’s…