Family Research Council

May 28, 2014 - Wednesday

Maternity Warden Awaits U.S. Newborn

Meriam Ibrahim may not be a United States citizen, but she seems to know more about courage than the administration leading them. Three times, the Sudanese mother of two was asked to deny her faith -- and three times she refused. Now, she and her toddler American son and newborn American daughter lie in a bug-infested prison cell -- a victim of the real war on women this President refuses to acknowledge.

While U.S. liberals fight for "women's health care," their leader is letting a 27-year-old mother give birth to a premature baby girl in a dirty overcrowded jail without medical attention. If that's "championing women's rights," then the international community should consider itself warned. The same politicians who promised not to "close their eyes" on women's needs are obviously too busy fighting for free birth control and universal abortion to hear the cries of a two-day old baby girl, whose Christian mother is just months away from being flogged and hanged.

Shame on them, writes Peter Roff. This woman's faith "is a testament to the kind of courage sorely lacking among those [Americans] who purport to speak for women all over the world. They have not the courage of their convictions, at least as far as Meriam Ibrahim is concerned." Fortunately for these little children, the American people are rising up to do what the Obama administration has not: demand their release.

Thousands of miles away from the Khartoum nightmare, congressional leaders are scrambling to respond. With the White House and State Department dragging their feet, Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) is filling the void, planning to introduce a resolution calling on the administration to act. U.S. Congressman Frank Wolf (R-Va.), one of the House's champions for religious liberty, chimed in, appealing for Meriam's release and leaning on the President to offer her "safe haven." "The clock is ticking," he warned.

And not just on the death sentence -- but on the children's livelihood as well. At this time of year in Sudan, the U.N. has warned in the past that infant mortality rates in prison are as high as one child per day. The urgency of the situation can't be overstated. Under Franks's bill, Congress is condemning the charges against Meriam, calling for the family's "immediate and unconditional release," urging the Departments of State and Homeland Security to grant asylum or refugee status, and encouraging the efforts by the U.S. government to support religious liberty in Sudan. As Columbia Law School's Rebecca Hamilton pointed out, the crisis is a dire one for every Christian. "In this decision, we see just how precarious life is for non-Muslims in Sudan. Even if international outrage ultimately leads to her pardon, the message to non-Muslims is clear: You are not safe here."

It's time for President Obama to stop hiding behind proclamations and press statements and do something. "If hashtags are the best the world's only remaining superpower can do when confronted with an incident like this," Roff explains, "then we probably need to rethink our position in the world and seriously consider just who it is we want to be America's next commander-in-chief." Meriam Ibrahim stared down death and chose God. It's time our nation chose to stand with her. Join the movement. Sign our White House petition to pressure the Obama administration to act.

Atone Deaf: Radicals Demand Gov's Apology for Enforcing Law

Is democracy something we should apologize for? Homosexual activists certainly think so. In a sign of how out of control the marriage debate has become, a Utah radical is demanding that Governor Gary Herbert (R) say he's sorry for defending his state's law. At issue is Herbert's statement last week, in which he blasted his counterparts in states like Pennsylvania for letting the voters' will be trampled by judicial tyrants.

"For elected officials, governors or attorneys general, to pick and choose what laws [they] will enforce, I think is a tragedy, and the next step is anarchy," a frustrated Governor Herbert told reporters. "We have an obligation to defend those laws." Of course, you wouldn't know that from the Obama administration, which has been unleashing its lawlessness on America for the last five years. Now, after this sustained effort to ignore the law, upholding it has somehow become controversial! As I told the Washington Times, if we'd have known 10 years ago that the rule of law would no longer be in play in the marriage debate, maybe we would have had a different strategy.

John Netto, part of the Utah Pride Center, was so offended by the notion of legal fidelity that he's calling on his Governor to ask forgiveness. "We absolutely think he should apologize, and we think he should reach out and... get some education." To suggest that ignoring the law leads to "anarchy," he went on, is "hate speech."

Apparently, it's no longer acceptable to have an opinion -- even if it's the majority's. In fact, the idea that a leader would actually want to uphold the law is so foreign that an activist is suggesting reeducation classes! And he's not alone. The Miami Dolphins's Don Jones can attest to that. The pro safety was suspended by his team just for objecting to a nationally-broadcast gay kiss at the NFL draft. Unfortunately, absurdity is the Left's answer to the question of same-sex "marriage." And if we don't stand up and speak up, it will be the country's answer too.

Hawaii Shores up Support for Churches

Atheists have tried everything to strip faith from the schools -- but in Hawaii, they'll have to try harder. As part of a ridiculous lawsuit in Oahu, a pair of anti-faith extremists tried to block churches from meeting in the local schools on the weekends, claiming they paid less rent than other weekend tenants would have. Mitchell Kahle and Holly Huber said these pastors -- one of whom is an FRC Watchmen pastor -- were somehow defrauding the government by paying what the two parties agreed on for leasing the space.

One Love Ministries contacted our friends at Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), who argued that the suit was preposterous on its face -- especially since the rate was set by the same government the churches were supposedly cheating! This week, a judge saw through the atheists' argument and dismissed a big chunk of the lawsuit. "The only thing these churches have done is serve the schools and bring great benefit to their surrounding communities," ADF explained.

"No one benefits from this suit except the two atheists bringing it, who stand to gain financially if they are successful. As ADF has said all along, their legal attack has no substance. The court did the right thing in gutting this lawsuit of its substance, and we are confident that the minor pieces that remain will be dismissed as well. We appreciate the serious research and consideration the court has dedicated to this ruling." We are grateful for pastors like "Waxer" Tipton who are contending for the faith and we applaud our friends at ADF for being an ally in the fight for freedom.

** If you care about gun rights, don't miss FRC's Ken Blackwell debating the Second Amendment on MSNBC below.

*** What does the states' pro-life push mean for women? Safer conditions. Find out how in Arina Grossu's new Townhall piece here.


Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.

More Washington Updates »