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Posts tagged ‘Mat Staver’

Gov. Chris Christie’s Ban on Change Therapy Heads to Appeals Court.


Gov. Chris Christie
Liberty Counsel is challenging a ban on change therapy, signed by Gov. Chris Christie. (Facebook)

Liberty Counsel filed its opening brief at the federal court of appeals against the New Jersey ban on change therapy. A3371, signed by Gov. Chris Christie, prohibits licensed counselors from providing any counsel to change or reduce unwanted same-sex attractions, behaviors or identity to minors.

“A3371 is far more scandalous than the George Washington Bridge lane closure,” said Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel. “Gov. Christie signed a bill that blocks licensed counselors from providing and young people from receiving any counsel to change unwanted same-sex attractions, behaviors, mannerisms or identity. This law is causing immediate harm to young people and to licensed counselors.”

“A3371 invades the sacrosanct relationship between counselor and client by prohibiting therapeutic conversations that assist a minor to reduce or eliminate unwanted same-sex attractions, behaviors, or identity while permitting conversations that affirm or approve them,” Staver told the court in the brief.

The district court found that the counseling of licensed New Jersey counselors is not entitled to anyFirst Amendment protection whatsoever, a notion that ignores long-established precedent of the Supreme Court.

“Far from being a First Amendment orphan, professional speech may be entitled to the strongest protection our Constitution has to offer,” said Staver.

“A3371 is a textbook example of viewpoint discrimination. The legislation explicitly prohibits licensed counselors from providing, and clients from receiving, any counsel to reduce or eliminate unwanted same-sex attractions, behavior or identity,” Staver told the court.

“Counselors can only affirm same-sex attractions even though the clients insist that such attractions are unwanted and they want to change. Depriving these young people of beneficial counsel of their choice is dangerous and is causing immediate harm to our clients,” concluded Staver.




Obama Administration Leading LGBT Affirmative Action Campaign.


President Barack Obama
Mat Staver says President Barack Obama ‘is forcing federal employees to openly affirm homosexuality and other forms of immoral behavior.’

A White House email entitled “GLBT Happy Pride Month from Obama” was sent to federal employees highlighting the “progress” of homosexuals in the federal workplace.

“President Obama is forcing federal employees to openly affirm homosexuality and other forms of immoral behavior,” says Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel. “What is happening in this Obama administration can be traced back to 2009 when President Obama appointed a so-called LGBT czar to push lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues in all of the federal agencies.

“In August of 2011,” Staver continues, “Obama issued an executive order entitled, ‘Establishing a Coordinated, government-wide Initiative to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in the Federal Workplace.’ The president is using bully tactics to force his immoral agenda on millions of people who come to work each day to make a living. This is shameful.

“Liberty Counsel has already reported on the Department of Justice’s ‘silence is not an option’ campaign, which provides that it is not enough if you remain silent on LGBT issues. Instead, you must affirm deviant sexual behavior. If you are silent, your job is in jeopardy,” he adds.

“After we reported on what was happening in the Department of Justice, more DOJ employees came forward saying that they were afraid for their jobs. Employees reported benefits being taken from them for speaking up or remaining silent on LGBT issues,” Staver reports. “After we reported on the DOJ, employees from the USDA sent us a newsletter entitled, ‘USDA’s Culture Transformation Action Item.’

“You have to ask yourself, why would the USDA have a Cultural Transformation Newsletter? On the very front page is the USDA Gay Pride Event. Now we are seeing it in the FBI, the CIA, and every other federal agency,” Staver explains.

“Essentially what we have in this administration is an LGBT affirmative action program. This is the most outrageous violation of conscience and the First Amendment that I have seen within any Administration—trying to force people’s conscience to affirm something that historically has been, and according to natural law and Biblical revelation, is unnatural, immoral and unhealthy,” he concludes.



Liberty Counsel Founder Urges Christians to Stand With Israel.


Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver
Liberty Counsel‘s Mat Staver (Facebook)

On Friday, Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, spoke at the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., for the 12th annual Israel Solidarity Event. Dr. Michael Oren, Israel’s ambassador to the United States, and Rev. Malcom Hedding also delivered addresses.

The Israel Solidarity Event celebrates Israel’s independence, when it became a sovereign nation in 1948, and encourages people to stand in solidarity with Israel to support its right to exist. This is the 65th year of Israel’s independence.

Staver urged Christians and Jews to stand in solidarity to one another and for the nation of Israel.

“Israel and America share a common bond through our history, heritage and faith,” he said. “Christians and Jews must stand in solidarity to one another and together must stand in solidarity with Israel and its right to exist as a sovereign nation. Along with our shared common values, Israel and America also share common threats. We are comforted and assured by the Scriptures that the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is not intimidated by adversity.”

In 2011, Liberty Counsel launched the Liberty Ambassador Counsel (LAC) program, designed to strengthen ties between Israel and the United States. Among other things, the LAC provides tours to Israel with twin goals: to strengthen the Christian faith of attendees and to equip them to become goodwill ambassadors for Israel.

The LAC tours visit biblical and historical sites, but unlike other tours provides attendees the opportunity to visit and hear from leaders in government, the military, business, academia and the religious community.

“A trip to Israel is a life-changing experience. You will never be the same. Your faith will be strengthened, and you cannot help but be a lifelong goodwill ambassador for Israel,” Staver said.



The Awakening 2013: Fighting for the Soul of America.

Michele Bachmann
Michele Bachmann (Facebook)

Since you’re reading this, I assume that, like me, you feel that there are many serious issues in America. We truly need an awakening. Because of this, I am focusing attention on an event two weeks from today sponsored by the Freedom Federation and my friend Mat Staver of the Liberty Counsel. It’s called The Awakening 2013, and it’s in the Orlando, Fla., area, April 19-20, at First Baptist Church in Oviedo. The theme this year is: Fighting for the Soul of America.

We know that the Lord has great things in store for us. The Awakening last year was powerful. I had the opportunity to attend. This year, I’m attending the first day only because I’m leaving the country on an extended trip (which I will write about later). But, this meeting is so important that I’m attending the first night when my friend Sam Rodriguez is speaking.

Other speakers include: Congresswoman Michele Bachmann—a principled reformer who holds an unwavering commitment to conservative values, is one of the featured speakers and will be sharing her heart for life, liberty and limited government. While running for President in 2012, Bachmann said, “The life of the unborn is not a sidebar issue … it is the watershed issue of our time.”

Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Gerry Boykin was one of the elite warriors chosen in 1978 to make up the first Delta Force. He then became commander of the unit, and he later commanded all of the U.S. Army Special Forces. He is an expert on national security, intelligence, the Middle East, and radical Islam.

Topics to be covered at the conference include understanding and reaching minority communities; understanding and reaching the millenial generation; the U.S.-Israel alliance; Sharia law and the Constitution; immigration reform; the Second Amendment to the Constitution; religious liberty, marriage and the family; human sex trafficking; social justice and the state of the economy.

Now, more than ever, Americans need to be educated on fundamental values and how to make values-based decisions.

The Awakening 2013 will inspire and equip you to fight for the soul of America. Please join me in attending this crucial event for our country.

Steve Strang is the founder and publisher of Charisma. Follow him on Twitter at @sstrang or Facebook (stephenestrang).

Park Service Backpedals on Free Bible Ban.

stack of Bibles
Bibles (Bright Adventures / Creative Commons)

In a victory for free speech and the First Amendment, the National Park Service is once again allowing distribution of Bibles on federal property.

Since 2011, Shirley Elliott has sold produce and homemade jellies at Thibodaux Farmer’s Market near Jean Lafitte National Historic Park in Louisiana. Additionally, Elliott has provided free Bibles on her table for anyone to take at will. On December 1, a park ranger told her to take the Bibles off her table because “they were on federal property.”

Market regulations allow vendors to sell locally grown produce and other foods and handcrafts that are traditionally produced on a farm. In addition, the regulations stipulate “nonprofit organizations with missions related to … education, youth and/or nutrition are invited to participate in the Market” on an equal basis as vendors.

“A decision to allow free distribution of the things mentioned above, while disallowing and requiring the removal of Bibles and other religious literature … would be improper and discriminatory,” Liberty Counsel attorney Richard Mast told the superintendent of Jean Lafitte National History Park.

Two days later, the acting superintendent wrote, saying, “We regret the misunderstanding regarding the distribution of religious materials … The NPS [National Park Service] respects the right of vendors to make free religious materials available. Please assure Ms. Elliott that she is welcome to offer free Bibles at her produce and homemade jellies table.”

“We are thankful that the Park Service reversed its decision and protected Ms. Elliott’s First Amendment right to distribute literature,” says Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.

“Thankfully, Ms. Elliott did not allow herself to be bullied by those who want to remove Christianity from the public square. It is the right of every American to advocate a religious viewpoint. Offering books or literature to willing recipients is protected by the First Amendment. Mere disagreement with the content of the speech is not sufficient to deny those constitutional rights,” Staver says.



Liberty Counsel Suits Up for Christmas Culture Wars With Friend or Foe Campaign.

Christmas shopping
(Reuters/Peter Andrews)

Liberty Counsel launched its tenth annual “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign” Wednesday, pledging to be a “friend” to those who recognize Christmas and a “foe” to those who censor it.

Liberty Counsel has helped overturn a number of grinch-like decisions, including nativity scenes which were banned from public property; senior living centers banning elderly residents from singing Christmas carols; public schools which sought to ban students from wearing the Christmas colors of red and green; school officials who censored religious words from Christmas carols; companies which renamed Christmas trees to “holiday trees;” and Christmas parades renamed to “holiday” parades. In all of these situations, Liberty Counsel successfully educated and reversed these anti-Christmas sentiments.

Liberty Counsel offers a Help Save Christmas action pack, which includes educational legal memoranda to educate government officials, teachers, parents, students, private businesses, employees, and others that it is legal to celebrate Christmas. The action pack also includes an “I ♥ CHRISTmas” button, an “I Helped Save Christmas” bumper sticker and button, and sample ads for use in local newspapers.

The ads point out that celebrating Christmas is perfectly legal in schools, on public property and in private businesses, and they offer Liberty Counsel’s free assistance to those facing criticism for celebrating Christmas. Many churches have placed these ads in local newspapers. Thousands of public school teachers and administrators, who are members of Christian Educators Association International, have joined Liberty Counsel’s “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign.”

As part of the annual “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign,” Liberty Counsel publishes a “Naughty and Nice” list, which catalogs retailers who either censor (“naughty”) or recognize (“nice”) Christmas. The list is compiled from information gathered by individual consumers and is updated whenever new information is received. Liberty Counsel wants to give the gift of Christmas back to those who support it.

“Renaming a Christmas tree to a holiday tree, stopping students from wearing red and green, and censoring religious Christmas carols are absurd, but true, examples of the war against Christmas,” said Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel. “Over the past few years, the ‘Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign’ has successfully put the ‘grinches’ on the run. This year millions of Americans will join us to help save Christmas.

“If a government entity censors Christmas in violation of the Constitution, then we will first seek to educate but, if necessary, we will litigate,” he continues. “If retailers choose to profit from Christmas while pretending it does not exist, then we will patronize their competitors.”



Same-Sex Therapy Ban May Get Overturned.

gay pride parade

While gays are celebrating the end of the same-sex therapy ban in California, Christian groups are moving to undo liberal Gov. Jerry Brown’s legislative handiwork.

Liberty Counsel on Thursday filed suit in federal court challenging the new law (SB 1172) that bans any counseling to diminish, eliminate, or manage same-sex sexual attractions.

Liberty Counsel represents several parents and their children who are receiving and benefiting from such counseling, several licensed counselors, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), and the American Association for Christian Counselors (AACC), an organization with about 50,000 professional counseling members.

“This law places the state between the client and the counselor. This law intrudes on a client’s fundamental right of self-determination to seek counseling that aligns with his/her religious and moral values. This law forces counselors to overrule the will of their clients who choose to prioritize their religious or moral values above unwanted same-sex sexual attraction,” says Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.

As Staver sees it, the law forces clients to receive and counselors to provide only one viewpoint on the subject of same-sex attractions, even when the client does not want to act on those attractions. This law even forbids counselors from referring clients to someone of their choice. For the state to assume that it knows best what kind of counseling individuals should receive is the height of hubris and ignorance, Staver argues.

“The counselor will be forced to disregard the client’s religious beliefs or change them. This law and the ethical codes of all of the licensing boards are on an inevitable collision course. The licenses of countless mental health professionals hang in the balance. If counselors obey the law, they will violate existing ethical codes because they will be forced to overrule their clients’ right to self-determination,” Staver explains.

“If counselors provide counsel or referral to clients seeking to diminish or manage same-sex sexual attractions, they will violate the new law. Counselors will be damned no matter what they do. Our minor clients will suffer irreparable harm, because they will no longer be able to receive the kind of counseling they have chosen which they believe has helped them.”

The law defines “sexual orientation change efforts” as any practice that is designed to reduce or eliminate same-sex attraction. Such broad language will prohibit any counseling that does not affirm and encourage experimentation with or acceptance of same-sex attractions, regardless of whether those feelings and attractions are unwanted by the counselee.

“This law is an astounding violation of the right to free speech and religious liberty,” Staver concludes. “Clients have the right to receive information that aligns with their values, and counselors have the right and the duty to provide information to help the clients in pursuit of their right to self-determination.”


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