Alabama Chief Justice Moore may be chief justice no more
"Homosexual conduct is, and has been, considered abhorrent, immoral, detestable, a crime against nature, and a violation of the laws of nature and of nature's God upon which this Nation and our laws are predicated. Such conduct … is destructive to a basic building block of society—the family. … It is an inherent evil against which children must be protected." A Don Wildmon fundraising letter? Nope. An Alabama Supreme Court decision written by Chief Justice Roy Moore, who became famous several years ago for his defiant display of the Ten Commandments.

Moore issued a concurring opinion in a case awarding custody of three children to their father over their lesbian mother. And now that case—or more specifically, Moore's decision—is becoming a national issue. The Christian Coalition (yes, it's still around) is praising Moore's act, saying he protected marriage and strengthened traditional families. Gay rights organizations are calling him unfit to sit on the bench. "Chief Justice Moore has decreed that his personal religious beliefs will now be the law of the land in Alabama," the head of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force tells The New York Times. "This violates the constitutional mandate of separation of church and state, and it renders him unfit to serve as a judge." The Times reports that State Rep. Alvin will "ask the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission to examine Chief Justice Moore's opinion to see whether he should be removed."

Even if he's not removed, editorializes The Montgomery Advertiser, he may have shot himself in the foot: "Ironically, Moore may well have provided an avenue for the federal courts to overturn any presumptions against homosexual parents in custody cases in Alabama while he goes on to claim he is actually defending them."

The Birmingham News reports that the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund also filed a complaint with the commission. In an editorial Wednesday, The Birmingham News opined, "If it's Moore's personal belief that homosexuals are unfit parents, so be it. He's entitled to that belief. But as the Supreme Court's chief justice, he should stick to the pertinent laws to reach a decision." Elsewhere, the editor and publisher of The Montgomery Independent attacks Moore: "The hatred that has spewed out of the mouths of public officials in Alabama this past week condemning gays and lesbians would make a visitor here think homosexuals are some well-armed foreign enemy attacking our border."

Article continues below

The lion shall lie down with the … close enough
Since Weblog's other weblog, Zooblog, is on hiatus, this item will have to be posted here. The Independent reports that Kenyans believe they're seeing the fulfillment of biblical prophecy as a lioness has adopted a second baby oryx (a kind of antelope). Behavioral scientists, meanwhile, think the lioness just has a psychological disorder. The first oryx was killed by another lion after the lioness defended it for two weeks. The second oryx (which apparently didn't bond as well with the lioness) was rescued by rangers. The lioness may be looking for a third.

More articles

(Note: For the most part, Weblog keeps the headlines given by the news sources. So if you're upset by the The Deseret News calling Mormonism a church or an Australian newspaper using anatomical terms, complain to them, not Weblog )

Bush tells China to respect religious freedom:


Article continues below


  • High profile a drag on faith-based office | The publicity from President Bush's executive order opening a White House faith-based office undercut the administration's ability to quietly shepherd through the initiative, a presidential scholar said yesterday. (The Washington Times)

  • Also: Group cites Bush charity plan flaws | Political miscalculations and poor communication inside the White House have plagued President Bush's effort to direct more money to religious charities, say scholars (Associated Press)

  • Group criticizes U.S. churches for idolizing nation | Kingdom Now movement, largely made of Vineyard,. Mennonite, and Pentecostal congregations, criticizes "Christian America" belief (Religion News Service)

  • Day's religious focus will hurt party, Harper says | Victory for former party head would result in the Canadian Alliance being branded an anti-abortion party (The National Post)

Church and state:


Church life:

  • Orthodox Church on way to Antarctica | Continent's first church would not only offer pastoral care to a handful of researchers but would also stand as a memorial to the 47 Russians buried on the continent over decades of exploration (The Moscow Times)

Article continues below
  • Protestant rebranding 'a challenge without Pope figure' | Germany's Protestants spending £900,000 to improve its profile. Their new slogan will be: "Protestants ask questions." (Ananova)

  • Church's shock rock | An unholy row over what residents call an ungodly din caused a Melbourne suburban council and a rock 'n' roll church to lock horns in court. (, Australia)

  • LDS Church now 5th largest in U.S. | Mormons pass up Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (Deseret News, Salt Lake City)

  • Church rises from ashes | Barrington United Methodist Church congregation appears stronger than ever (The Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs)

  • A savior for the churches | Idea of a catechumens returns to Germany at a time when the churches there are dying (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung)

  • Churches could host 'services' all week | Bigger congregations mean bigger buildings, bigger parking lots and bigger Sunday morning traffic jams. All those "biggers" could also mean our churches are poised to become big, bad neighbors. (Ruth Ann Baker, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

  • Revolving clergy harms religion | Firings higher than national labor force (Gerald L. Zelizer, USA Today)

Christianity and other religions:

Franklin Graham makes AIDS a priority:

Article continues below

Sex & marriage:

  • Red Cross quits AIDS effort | Abortion foes protested condom distribution at Olympics (The Washington Post)

  • Investing in abstinence? | Some may listen to the secretary of state about condom use, but a call girl offers her condom cues instead. (Tracy Quan,

Pop culture:

National Religious Broadcasters:

Other stories of interest:

Related Elsewhere

See our past Weblog updates:

February 21 | 20 | 19 | 18
February 15 | 14 | 13 | 12 | 11
February 8 | 7 | 6 | 5 | 4
February 1 | January 31 | 30 | 29 | 28
January 25 | 24 | 23 | 22 | 21
January 18 | 17 | 16 | 15 | 14