St. Louis Board of Aldermen
The St. Louis Board of Aldermen are inducted into the Hall of Shame for their recent legislation, which makes them effectively a Death Squad, criminalizing businesses, landlords, and even the Catholic Church because of discrimination against those who have had abortions or are planning an abortion, and against those who advocate for reproductive health, reported LifeSiteNews today. Ordinance 70459 established pregnancy and reproductive health decisions as protected classes. LifeSiteNews reports, Archbishop Carlson called the passage of Ordinance 70459 a terrible moment for St. Louis. As a city resident and the leader of the oldest organized religion in the region, I am outraged that the City of St. Louis Board of Aldermen has now enshrined into law an ordinance which creates a ‘sanctuary’ for the despicable practice of abortion, he said in a public statement. In a statement published on the Archdiocese website, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson reiterated that the archdiocese will not comply with a St. Louis ordinance that violates religious freedom. The St. Thomas More Society has file a law suit on behalf of the St. Louis Archdiocese and several other organizations and businesses on the basis that the ordinance violates violates Constitutional free speech, freedom of religion, the right to expressive association, due process and equal protection, as well as several state laws, including the Missouri Religious Freedom Restoration Act. In a press release, the Thomas More Society said, This ordinance does not exempt individuals with sincere religious, moral or ethical objections to abortion from its requirements in any way, and even for qualifying religious organizations, the exemption for employment ¦ is extremely limited ¦ vague and undefined, Thomas More Society Special Counsel Sarah Pitlyk said. That is unconstitutional, and directly violates both federal and state law. The ordinance forbids Christian organizations and individuals whose teachings hold abortion to be a grave sin, from refusing to sell or rent property to individuals or corporate organizations that promote or provide abortions and the city seeks to compel private businesses to include abortion coverage in their employee health plans, despite sincere objections by (Christian) company owners.