Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dead at 87

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the enigmatic, longtime Supreme Court justice who attained near cult-like status among progressive circles, died Friday at the age of 87 from complications surrounding metastatic pancreatic cancer.

The late Supreme Court justice, who spent more than two decades on the bench in the highest court of the land, is survived by her two children, Jane Carol and James Steven Ginsburg.

“Our Nation has lost a jurist of historic stature,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. said in a Friday evening statement. “We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn, but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her — a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”

President Bill Clinton names Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg, of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, to be Associate Justice of the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden of the White House, Washington DC, June 14, 1993.

Ginsburg, who was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1993 by President Bill Clinton, was known for her soft-spoken demeanor that masked an analytical mind, a deep concern for the rights of every American and a commitment to upholding the Constitution.

Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act of 2019

H.R. 3884 – This bill decriminalizes marijuana.

Specifically, it removes marijuana from the list of scheduled substances under the Controlled Substances Act and eliminates criminal penalties for an individual who manufactures, distributes, or possesses marijuana.

The bill also makes other changes, including the following:

  • replaces statutory references to marijuana and marijuana with cannabis,
  • requires the Bureau of Labor Statistics to regularly publish demographic data on cannabis business owners and employees,
  • establishes a trust fund to support various programs and services for individuals and businesses in communities impacted by the war on drugs,
  • imposes a 5% tax on cannabis products and requires revenues to be deposited into the trust fund,
  • makes Small Business Administration loans and services available to entities that are cannabis-related legitimate businesses or service providers,
  • prohibits the denial of federal public benefits to a person on the basis of certain cannabis-related conduct or convictions,
  • prohibits the denial of benefits and protections under immigration laws on the basis of a cannabis-related event (e.g., conduct or a conviction), and
  • establishes a process to expunge convictions and conduct sentencing review hearings related to federal cannabis offenses.
Continue reading “Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act of 2019”

John MacArthur wins another round in L.A. Court

Los Angeles County told Court would not find John MacArthur in contempt of court because no court order was in place to prevent indoor worship services at Grace Community Church.

Jenna Ellis of the Thomas More Scoiety
Jenna Ellis

The County of Los Angeles asked a Los Angeles Superior Court to find Pastor John MacArthur and Grace Community Church in contempt of court for holding indoor worship services. There was only one problem: there was no court order against indoor services. So, the court rejected this attack on Pastor MacArthur and Grace Community Church’s religious liberty.

This is the third time Los Angeles County has hauled John MacArthur and Grace Community Church into court, according to Thomas More Society Special Counsel Jenna Ellis and Charles LiMandri, who are representing the church.

Officials with Los Angeles County wanted MacArthur and the leadership of the Grace Community Church held in contempt of court after holding a regular church service at their Sun Valley, California campus last Sunday. Ellis accused Los Angeles County of continuing a policy of harassment against Pastor MacArthur and Grace Community Church.

Ellis responded to the judicial finding in a statement: “We are pleased with the outcome today. Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff correctly found there is no court order prohibiting Grace Community Church from holding indoor services. LA County continues to harass and target Pastor MacArthur. Having failed to get a court order to shut down the church they have sought three times, they’re going to try again by hauling us back into court. Ironically, LA County said in its application for contempt that, ‘Grace Church cannot thumb its nose at the court when decisions don’t go its way,’ yet that’s precisely what LA County is now doing themselves. We will simply continue to defend our client’s constitutionally protected rights because church is essential.”

John MacArthur sues CA state over worship restrictions

Pastor John MacArthur of Grace Community Church has filed a lawsuit against California over restrictions on indoor worship after the state issued a second lockdown order as part of its response to COVID-19. 

According to the report, the suit was filed Wednesday in Superior Court of the state of California for the County of Los Angeles, North Central District, and names Newsom, Attorney General Xavier Beccera, and other officials, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti as defendants.

“California targeted the wrong groups. California first lifted restrictions on gatherings that occurred outdoors, blessing after-the-fact the illegal conduct of the ‘George Floyd’ protestors.”

Grace Community Church and MacArthur state, the government officials are interfering with their religious freedom and selectively restricting gatherings amid the pandemic.

Continue reading “John MacArthur sues CA state over worship restrictions”

MacArthur defies late-night court order against indoor worship

Pastor John MacArthur on Sunday, Aug. 16, defied the mandate of the California Court of Appeal by holding an indoor worship service — further escalating a nationally watched fight over COVID-19 restrictions.

John MacArthur

MacArthur, a prominent Calvinist preacher and author, has led his Southern California megachurch to defy public health orders of the city, county and state intended to curb the spread of coronavirus. He and the church’s elders have claimed the church is being persecuted by the government and will not bow to their illegitimate authority over the church.

On Saturday, Aug. 15, a trial court judge ruled that the church could hold indoor services while litigation against the church played out. Los Angeles County had threatened to enforce $1,000-per-day fines and possible imprisonment against MacArthur and other church leaders. On Aug. 13, the church filed suit against the city, county and state, and the county promptly filed countersuit.

Continue reading “MacArthur defies late-night court order against indoor worship”

‘Historic Win’: John MacArthur Claims Victory in Lawsuit Over Church Restrictions

Update: A judge ruled late Friday afternoon that Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California, can continue hosting indoor worship services and does not have to adhere to any attendance caps or bans on singing.

John MacArthur sues California over lockdown

Los Angeles Pastor John MacArthur filed a lawsuit Wednesday against California over Gov. Gavin Newsom’s second coronavirus lockdown order, including banning singing in houses of worship.

John MacArthur
Grace Community Church

“We feel like we are the most essential reality in the world, Look, Jesus is Lord. He is the head of our church. Govenor Newsom is not the head of the church. Mayor Garcetti is not the head of the church.”

At the end of July, the County of Los Angeles sent a demand letter to MacArthur, in which attorney Jason Tokoro called for the church to “immediately cease holding indoor worship services” or face “criminal and civil liability.”

Thomas More Society special counsel Jenna Ellis and Charles LiMandri, representing the pastor and the church, called the restrictions “onerous” in the complaint and called on the state to recognize that Christians are not second-class citizens.

“After Grace Community Church voluntarily complied with state orders for nearly six months, California’s edicts demanding an indefinite shut down have gone now far past rational or reasonable and are firmly in the territory of tyranny and discrimination. This isn’t about health,” Ellis said. “It’s about blatantly targeting churches.”

The lawsuit claims the state is acting unconstitutionally and inconsistently.

“When many went to the streets to engage in ‘political protests’ against ‘racism’ and ‘police brutality,’ these protesters refused to comply with the pandemic restrictions. Instead of enforcing the public health orders, public officials were all too eager to grant a de facto exception for these favored protesters,” the suit reads in part.

“We are simply continuing to do today what we have done for the past 63 years that Grace Community Church has been open to welcome the Los Angeles community and serve their spiritual needs,” MacArthur said in a statement. “We will remain open and teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all who decide they want to come worship with us.”