Social Issues

Commentary & Community

The Supreme Court’s Conservative Run Is Over

With recent decisions upholding affirmative action and striking down abortion restrictions, some say the Supreme Court’s conservative era is over. Do you think it is proper to look at the court as having a “conservative” or “liberal” tendency? Is the court too politicized, or are political considerations inevitable on controversial questions?


Robert Doar: Paul Ryan's anti-poverty ideas an excellent start

House Speaker Paul Ryan has outlined ways that he would like to reform U.S. anti-poverty efforts. His focus is on re-orienting poverty programs to encourage and support work. Do you think these types of proposals are the way to reduce poverty? Or is there a better way to help low-income Americans?


Bathroom Wars Come to Michigan

The conflict actually arrived in March, when Democrats on a state Board of Education (an entity that has limited authority) proposed “guidance” that would require public schools to let students “use the restroom in accordance with their gender identity.”

See Memorandum from State of Michigan Department of Education here.

This week a bill was introduced in the state Senate that was described by as follows:

2016 Senate Bill 993: Ban boys in public school girl’s restroom and vice versa

Introduced by Sen. Tom Casperson (R) on May 25, 2016, to prohibit public schools from allowing boys to use the girl’s restroom or girls to use the boy’s rest room, plus locker rooms, showers, etc. when students of the opposite sex are present. However, if a student asserts having a gender is different from their biological sex, and a parent or legal guardian consents in writing, the school would have provided an accommodation that does not violate the prohibition described above. This could include a single-occupancy or unisex restroom or the “controlled use” of faculty facilities.      

Senators Mark Warner, Tim Kaine ask for LGBT guidelines for schools

Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine have joined other Democratic senators in asking the federal government to enforce policies affecting gay and transgendered college students. This is partially in response to North Carolina’s law that mandates transgendered students use bathrooms according to their biological sex. Does the federal government have a place in policing school policies on bathroom use?

North Carolina, Justice Dept. file dueling lawsuits over transgender rights

The Obama Administration has told North Carolina that its legislation regarding transgender bathroom access is discriminatory, and that if the state enforces it that is a violation of federal law. North Carolina disagrees, and has filed suit against the federal government. Is this an issue where the federal government should step in and stop the state?

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