Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in defense of a service member whose cell phone was searched and seized by the military in an unlawful manner. As we have in the Jones case, the Graham case, the Zodhiates case, and others we explain how the Fourth Amendment first and foremost protects property rights, not some vague “reasonable expectation of privacy.”
Today we filed a brief in the Second Circuit challenging the Government’s use of cell phone location information obtained from a cell phone provider in response to a grand jury subpoena. We explain that under the Jones and Jardines textual/historic analysis that the cell phone user has a protected privacy interest in these records.
Our firm’s new website www.biblicalgrid.com is discussed by Bill Olson in this interview with David Schnittger of Southwest Prophecy Ministries. Our BiblicalGrid website was launched on May 15 as a compendium of Christian and pro-liberty websites, as well as others which regularly report on important matters. It is our effort to catalog, categorize, and promote important sources of information that help make sense of a world increasingly spinning out of control. One of the motivations to create this site was the effort by Google, Facebook, YouTube and other such sites to depress traffic at conservative sites. BiblicalGrid now links to approximately 300 websites, and contains links to dozens of other publications and resources to help understand current issues and trends, and more are being added weekly.
Today we filed in the U.S. Supreme Court an amicus brief supporting President Trump’s challenge to the Fourth Circuit decision which approved a Maryland judge’s injunction against his Executive Order. Our brief supports both President Trump’s application to stay this injunction, and supports his petition for certiorari. The brief addressed three broad points.
Today we filed a brief in the Sixth Circuit supporting a Christian Funeral Home in a suit by the EEOC on behalf of a man employed by that funeral home who would like to dress in women’s clothing for one year as he “transitions.” The EEOC made the naked assertion that the claim for this employee was supported by the text of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but failed to explain it. (The provision relating to “sex” was inserted into the bill by Virginia Congressman Howard W. Smith to prohibit discrimination against women, as a poison pill to kill the bill, but it passed anyway.) The EEOC relied solely on the Supreme Court’s 1989 decision in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, which was said to prohibit “sexual stereotyping.” Our brief explains the weaknesses in that decision, and why it does not apply here. Lastly, we explained why the EEOC provision would undermine the funeral home’s Christian witness.
Today we filed our third amicus brief defending the Gloucester County School Board against an ACLU challenge on behalf of a girl who would like to be a boy. The prior litigation involved the Obama Administration’s directives to the School Board to open the boys room and boys locker and shower facilities to Gavin Grimm. However, President Trump rescinded those guidance letters. Therefore, the question before the Fourth Circuit no longer whether deference should be paid to the Executive Branch, but whether federal law requires School Boards to allow students to use whatever facilities they may choose to use based on the sex with which they may self-identify. This brief was a Supplemental Brief filed in the Fourth Circuit on that statutory issue.
Today, our firm was honored to have filed its 100th amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court. This brief supported a petition for certiorari filed by the state of Arizona. Arizona is seeking to have the Supreme Court review and reject a Ninth Circuit opinion which struck down Arizona’s decision not to issue driver’s licenses to illegal aliens who are part of President Obama’s unconstitutional DACA program.
This article in World Net Daily discusses the series of four articles our firm wrote for the U.S. Justice Foundation on the American Bar Association’s latest effort to make the nation’s lawyers behave in a politically correct manner — ABA Ethics Rule 8.4. The article states “Titus and Olson contend it’s the ABA’s “plan to politically purify the legal profession.”
Today, our firm filed comments with the FDA in response to the agency’s request for input regarding its regulation of the term “healthy” in the labeling of food. In recent years, FDA’s current regulatory scheme has led to absurd results, such as where avocados and almonds were not considered healthy, while Poptarts and Frosted Flakes were. Now FDA purports to replace its bad regulations with more regulations.
Today, our firm filed its fourth brief in support of President Trump’s effort to impose immigration controls. This brief supported President Trump’s second Executive Order issued on March 6, 2017 — to secure our borders against entry by those coming from select countries where their background cannot be checked.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in the United States Supreme Court in support of a petition to protect the Crisis Pregnancy Centers in California. The California Reproductive FACT Act requires these pro-life centers to disseminate to those who seek its services, information explaining the easy availability of taxpayer subsidized abortion. Our brief explains that this state law violates the Declaration of Independence’s recognition of protected “unalienable rights,” violates the law of our Creator, violates the Constitution’s Free Speech protections, and violates the Free Exercise Clause. Lastly, we explain that the Ninth Circuit’s decision upholding this law has no limiting principle, and therefore could next be used to ban entirely Crisis Pregnancy Centers across the state.
Today Herb Titus wrote a powerful critique of 7th Circuit Judge Richard Posner’s astonishing concurring opinion in Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College, issued April 4, 2017. That case determined that discrimination based on “sex” really means “sexual orientation” — irrespective of what Congress meant when it enacted Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The article was published by the Judicial Action Group.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in support of a motion to suppress evidence in a criminal case in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas. The case is on remand from an appeal to the Tenth Circuit which resulted in a decision written by Judge (now Justice) Neil Gorsuch. Gorsuch had pointed out that the search of an email with its attachments could constitute a violation of the email owner’s property interest protected by the Fourth Amendment, applying the Supreme Court’s United States v. Jones principle. Our amicus brief pointed out that the Jones property principle is primary, but also, the search of the email violated the defendant’s privacy interest in the communications.
Today we co-counseled the filing of a Petition for Writ of Certiorari in the United States Supreme Court on behalf of Patriotic Veterans, a nonprofit organization based in Illinois. This Petition brings to the High Court a First Amendment challenge to an Indiana law barring most nonprofit organizations from using automated dialing equipment to conduct issue advocacy and grassroots lobbying. Our Petition explains that the First Amendment, as reaffirmed by a long line of Supreme Court decisions, vests in each homeowner the right to decide whether to receive a visitor at a door, and that same principle applies to receiving a message delivered by telephone. State legislators are often annoyed when constituents learn what bills are pending, and what is going on behind closed doors in the legislature. They are particularly annoyed when constituents besiege them with messages telling them how they want them to vote. However, state legislators have no right to enact laws to shut down issue advocacy and grassroots lobbying, intruding themselves between nonprofit organizations like Patriotic Veterans and the people of Indiana.
Today, our firm filed its third brief in support of President Trump’s effort to impose immigration controls. Our brief supported President Trump’s effort to secure our borders against entry by those coming from select countries where their background cannot be checked. This brief was filed in the Fourth Circuit — with respect to the second Trump Executive Order issued on March 6, 2017.
Today we filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to review a deeply flawed decision of the Virginia Supreme Court involving the Fourth Amendment. The cased involved different ways that courts evaluate the constitutionality of searches and seizures. The search in this case was of a motorcycle under a tarp located what is known as the “curtilage” of a home, or the area immediately surrounding it. Under the deeply flawed rule the Virginia Supreme Court applied, the Fourth Amendment has no bearing at all whenever an automobile or anything that resembles an automobile is being searched, irrespective of where the automobile is located.
Today, we filed our second amicus brief in this case, in support of a petition for rehearing en banc in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. We urged the Fourth Circuit to rehear the case, because the panel decision ignored the requirements of the U.S. Constitution’s Full Faith and Credit clause. The issue involved a Maryland resident’s right to purchase and possess firearms despite the judicial removal of disability to own firearms by a Virginia court after a Virginia conviction.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of a petition for writ of certiorari, asking the Court to review a California ban on mental health providers pro-hetrosexual therapies to minors. Interestingly, the California law, SB 1172, does not ban pro-homosexual therapies. We reject the notion that the Free Exercise Clause was written to give special rights to religious people. We explain that SB 1172 violates the Free Exercise Clause, which operates as a jurisdictional barrier to the power of States, barring California’s encroachment upon matters of opinion outside its civil jurisdiction. We also demonstrated that the State’s inherent police power does not permit it to conditioning licensing in order to suppress politically correct and morally unpopular medical treatments under the guise of protecting minors.
Today,the U.S. Supreme Court Clerk has asked the parties to file by March 1 for letters explaining their views on how the Gloucester County v. GG case should proceed in view of the Trump Administration change of policy.
Today we filed a brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the petition for certiorari filed in the Peruta challenge to California concealed carry laws. Our brief, however, urged the Supreme Court to grant certiorari to review a broader issue than that sought by the petitioners, and based on a more robust understanding of the protections afforded by Second Amendment than that urged by petitioners.