Pastors Face Attack in Houston

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Air Date: October 16, 2014

Host: Jim Schneider

Guest: Casey Mattox

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Casey Mattox serves as Senior Counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom where he plays a pivotal role with the Center for Life. He has been active in defending the sanctity of life and holding the abortion industry accountable for its fraudulent use of taxpayer dollars. He is also active in defending the freedom of conscience of healthcare workers.

This Crosstalk features a look at the fallout from the “bathroom bill” controversy in Houston, Texas. This bill would guarantee that a man who thinks he’s a woman could go into the restroom of his choice. Those who opposed this began a petition drive and came up with the required number of signatures to force a vote on the matter. Casey noted, however, that the city illegally prevented this issue from appearing on the ballot. Those behind the petition drive sued the city and in response the city demanded that every pastor in opposition to the “bathroom bill” must provide city officials with all of their sermons as well as all private communications such as text messages, e-mails or anything else that involved discussion of homosexuality.

Earlier this week, Alliance Defending Freedom filed a motion in court to stop this and tell city officials that they are not entitled to the information being asked for because the pastors are not parties to the lawsuit.

As of broadcast time, it had been alleged that there was some kind of reversal but Casey noted that this isn’t true although Mayor Annise Parker has indicated she will narrow the subpoena. On the other hand, Jim noted that Mayor Parker is now denying that she knew about the city’s attempt to subpoena the sermons and correspondence between pastors and their congregations. Yet Dave Welch, Executive Director of the Houston Area U.S. Pastors Council, received a subpoena and he has said that this was initiated by the mayor herself.

Even if the mayor and city officials are backing away from the sermon aspect of the subpoena, that still leaves the demand for private communication information from the pastors about homosexuality and that is still unconstitutional.

In California an edict has come down from the state insurance department that orders every insurance policy in the state to begin covering elective abortions. Churches are also receiving notices from their insurance representatives that their policies are now paying for elective abortion coverage for the pastor and the staff. Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a federal complaint with the Office of Civil Rights and the Department of Health and Human Services asking them to enforce a federal law that prohibits the state from taking this kind of action.

More Information

To communicate with Mayor Annise Parker of Houston, Texas, call 713-837-0311 or e-mail her at

Alliance Defending Freedom

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