National Shorts

Parents Win Fight to End Teen Sex Conference in Oregon

(WNS)–Families in Oregon scored a victory when the controversial Teen Sexuality Conference in Seaside, Ore., was canceled.  The conference, which has been held for more than 20 years, faced a firestorm of public outcry after local news station KOIN 6 released a series of investigative pieces on the sexually explicit material being supplied to students as young as 11.  Activists say this is only the beginning of a growing awareness of systemic problems in the way healthcare and sex education are handled in Oregon’s school system.  “We understand that this is really just the tip of the iceberg as far as the kind of K-12 education that is being promoted in schools across the district and across the state,” Lori Porter, director of Parents’ Rights in Education, told me. Porter, a school teacher for more than 25 years, attended one of the conferences in 2011 when she was on the sex education review committee for her district. “It was at that point that I started to connect the dots and have real concerns about the material that was being presented to minors under the guise of health and safety,” she said.


Alabama Supreme Court: Stop Issuing Same-Sex Marriage Licenses

(WNS)–The Alabama Supreme Court is taking on the federal judiciary, ordering the state’s probate judges to stop issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In January, a federal judge struck down the state constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2006 that defines marriage as between one man and one woman. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to issue an emergency stay of that ruling, allowing same-sex marriage to begin on Feb. 9.  But Alabama Chief Court Justice Roy Moore ordered the state’s probate judges not to follow the federal court order, declaring it did not have the authority to overturn a state law. Most judges followed Moore’s order until another federal judge said they didn’t have to.


Indiana Considers Drop Boxes for Abandoned Babies

(WNS)–Indiana could become the first state to legalize infant drop boxes, a controversial method for parents to safely and anonymously surrender a baby they might otherwise abandon.  The bill, sponsored by state Rep. Casey Cox, R-Ft. Wayne, unanimously passed the Indiana house in late February. Cox said his legislation is a natural extension of infant safe-haven laws in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Under those laws, parents are able to relinquish custody of an infant at designated locations—most often hospitals, fire stations, and police stations—with no questions asked and no legal ramifications. States shield parents from prosecution for abandonment or neglect as long as the child is surrendered without any signs of abuse.



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