Blog of Rights

Supreme Court Rules Companies Can Use Religion to Discriminate

A Loss for Women Today in the High Court

By Brigitte Amiri, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project at 11:16am
The highest court in the country ruled today that it is acceptable for closely held corporations to use their religious beliefs to take away benefits guaranteed to their employees by law – something the Supreme Court has never before sanctioned. Everyone has the right to his or her religious beliefs, but those beliefs cannot be imposed on others.
Protect Access to Birth Control

Wait, Did An Oklahoma Hospital Try to Ban Birth Control Prescriptions For An Entire Town?

By Kelsey Townsend, Reproductive Freedom Project, ACLU at 2:06pm

Last week, women in Bartlesville, Oklahoma faced a terrifying possibility. According to a new religiously based directive from the town's main health care system, only one OB-GYN in the entire town would have been allowed to prescribe birth control.…

School vouchers aren’t just bad policy—they’re unpopular, too

School vouchers aren’t just bad policy—they’re unpopular, too

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:50pm

Year after year, PDK/Gallup releases an annual poll of public attitudes toward public schools, and it consistently finds that a majority of those polled oppose allowing students and parents to use taxpayer-funded vouchers to attend private schools.…

Paying the Price for Defending Religious Freedom in South Carolina

Paying the Price for Defending Religious Freedom in South Carolina

By Heather L. Weaver, ACLU Program on Freedom of Religion and Belief at 2:21pm

"What's the harm?" That is the question we are often asked when the ACLU steps in to stop public school officials from including official prayer in school events and proselytizing students. It was a question posed by many community members in the Chesterfield…

Challenging the Ignorance of a Hate Attack

Challenging the Ignorance of a Hate Attack

By Prabhjot Singh, Assistant Professor, Columbia University at 2:35pm

On September 21, I took a walk with a friend near Central Park after dropping off my wife and 1-year-old son. A group of young men on bikes saw my turban and beard – distinctly identifiable features of a devout Sikh – and yelled "Osama" and "Terrorist"…

The Good, Bad, and Ugly for Religious Liberty and LGBT Rights in Defense Bill

The Good, Bad, and Ugly for Religious Liberty and LGBT Rights in Defense Bill

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:15pm

A sure sign of early summer in Washington, besides the sticky, humid air, is the House and Senate Armed Services Committees kicking off the annual process to pass the defense authorization bill – known as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).…

Race Matters Everywhere Else in America - Why Shouldn’t It Matter in College Admissions?

Race Matters Everywhere Else in America - Why Shouldn’t It Matter in College Admissions?

By Courtney Bowie, Racial Justice Program at 10:25am

Today, the Supreme Court will hear the so-called affirmative action case, Fisher v. University of Texas.  The Court will decide whether or not the university’s use of race, as one of many factors in its admissions process, is constitutional.…

Newest School RFID Scheme is Reminder of Technology’s Surveillance Potential

Newest School RFID Scheme is Reminder of Technology’s Surveillance Potential

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 1:42pm

It’s funny how unpredictable the course of technology is. A few weeks ago it was reported that a Texas school district plans to implant RFID chips in student IDs, and use them to track the whereabouts of students. RFID chips, of course, are what…

On the First Anniversary of Wal-Mart v. Dukes:  Stand Up or Be Trampled

On the First Anniversary of Wal-Mart v. Dukes: Stand Up or Be Trampled

By Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:27am
Image above: Betty Dukes with Senator Al Franken. The author, Deborah Vagins, to the immediate right, joined by coalition partners.

Over a decade ago, I had the great honor to be part of a team representing Betty Dukes, an employee at Wal-Mart who…

New Regulation Proposes Government-Funding of Religion

By Elayne Weiss, Washington Legislative Office at 5:27pm

Did you know your federal tax dollars could soon be used to help construct, acquire or rebuild houses of worship overseas? The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the government agency primarily responsible for distributing foreign…