Today our firm filed its second amicus brief in a challenge to the most sweeping Fourth Amendment violations ever committed by the U.S. government. (Our last brief was filed over four years ago.) This suit seeks to stop three different mass surveillance programs operated by the federal government — programs which have seized Internet (email, internet searches, etc.) and telephone communications of Americans since after 09-11. The district court below dismissed Jewel’s Fourth Amendment claims in 2015, but the Ninth Circuit case reversed and sent the case back. Earlier this year, the district court again dismissed Jewel’s Fourth Amendment claims. Our brief here asserts that Jewel established standing, that Jewel properly set out a property (and privacy) based claim for a Fourth Amendment violation, and explains how the government’s seizure and search of records was even worse than a prohibited general warrant.
Today we filed our third amicus brief in support of Altitude Express from a case brought by a homosexual skydiving instructor who was fired for speaking inappropriately at work about his sexual orientation. The Altitude Express case has been consolidated with a case from the Eleventh Circuit — Bostock. As in the Harris Funeral Case, we explain that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Ac does not apply to sexual orientation.
Today we filed our third amicus brief in support of a Christian employer, Harris Funeral Homes, against a case brought by a male who demanded his employer allow him to dress like a woman. We explained why Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act could never be interpreted to apply to such claims.
Today we filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to re-examine its Terry v. Ohio, stop-and-frisk doctrine. Although Terry stop and frisks were limited to a search for weapons, in this case one was used to justify seizing a bullet. Since that decision in 1968, both Fourth and Second Amendment law has changed. The property basis of the Fourth Amendment has been re-established, and the Second Amendment has been recognized as protecting an individual right.
Today we filed an amicus brief in support of a petition for certiorari challenging the government’s ability to track citizens through Cell Site Location Information (CSLI) obtained without a warrant. In this case, the trial court allowed the government to introduce 28 months of CSLI obtained by a prosecutor using a mere Grand Jury Subpoena. We argue that the Carpenter v. United States decision, issued in 2018, affirms the protection of CSLI under the Fourth Amendment, and the third-party doctrine does not apply. Our brief explains why the “good faith” exception applies only to police, and not prosecutors. This brief, filed in the U.S. Supreme Court, is our third amicus brief in support of Philip Zodhiates.
Today we filed an amicus brief supporting the owners of a small bakery in Oregon (Sweetcakes by Melissa) who refused to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex wedding because of their religious convictions. For this, they were fined $135,000 and ordered to cease and desist following their religious convictions. This case is similar to Colorado, Masterpiece Cakeshop, a case in which we filed two briefs, but which was not decided on the central issue — the extent to which public accommodation can restrict the Free Exercise of Religion.
Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court urging the court to grant a petition for certiorari to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to review its decision giving a meaning to Title VII that Congress never intended. The Sixth Circuit decided to change a 50-year old understanding of Title VII to accommodate to the demands of LGBTQ activists, by barring employment discrimination based on “sexual orientation.” Our brief explained the radical nature of recent the Hively and Zarda cases where courts chose to amend Title VII under the guise of re-interpretation of the statute. This follows on the two briefs we filed in Zarda, and the earlier brief we filed in the Harris Funeral Home case when it was in the Sixth Circuit.
Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court supporting a petition for certiorari to review a circuit court decision giving homosexuals the right to sue employers, even though Congress never authorized such suits. Ten liberal Second Circuit judges joined a decision to rewrite Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit discrimination against homosexuals in employment. This follows a similar ruling from the Seventh Circuit.
American Thinker published our analysis of the Carpenter v. United States decision, issued yesterday.
Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court defending Masterpiece Cakeshop in Colorado against an order of a Colorado Administrative agency which would compel a Christian baker to facilitate and participate in the celebration of a same-sex wedding.
Today, we filed an amicus curiae brief in the United States Supreme Court on the merits, arguing that the government may not seize and search your cell phone’s cell site location information without a warrant. This brief follows two briefs that we filed on this same issue in United States v Graham, and one in United States v. Zodhiates.
Bloomberg BNA carried an article discussing the brief we filed in U.S. v. Robinson on July 24, 2017.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit sitting en banc, where we are opposing efforts by radical homosexuals to convince liberal judges in New York to re-write the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit discrimination against homosexuals in employment.
Currently, the 1964 federal law bars discrimination in employment on the basis of “sex” and “race.” However, in Zarda, lawyers for a homosexual skydiving instructor (since deceased from a skydiving accident) are claiming “sex” includes “sexual orientation,” and that Zarda was fired from his job because he was gay.
Today we filed a brief in the Sixth Circuit supporting a Christian Funeral Home in a suit by the EEOC on behalf of a man employed by that funeral home who would like to dress in women’s clothing for one year as he “transitions.” The EEOC made the naked assertion that the claim for this employee was supported by the text of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but failed to explain it. (The provision relating to “sex” was inserted into the bill by Virginia Congressman Howard W. Smith to prohibit discrimination against women, as a poison pill to kill the bill, but it passed anyway.) The EEOC relied solely on the Supreme Court’s 1989 decision in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, which was said to prohibit “sexual stereotyping.” Our brief explains the weaknesses in that decision, and why it does not apply here. Lastly, we explained why the EEOC provision would undermine the funeral home’s Christian witness.
Today,we filed our third brief opposing NSA’s program of “Upstream” Internet surveillance of Americans. Our brief urges the Fourth Circuit to reverse the decision of the District Court in Maryland which found that neither Wikimedia Foundation — which runs Wikipedia — nor the other plaintiffs in the case, had standing to challenge that surveillance.
Today we filed a brief in the U.S. Supreme Court urging the High Court to reverse decisions from the Supreme Court of North Dakota and Minnesota which authorized police to force drivers to submit to warrantless blood and breath tests. We urge the Court to apply to principles of its prior decisions in United States v. Jones, and Florida v. Jardines, which re-established the property basis of the Fourth Amendment. We oppose reliance on the modern notion that the Fourth Amendment only protected a nontextual “expectation of privacy” — a false notion on which the two state supreme courts relied.
Today our firm filed a brief supporting a Fourth Amendment challenge to the warrantless use of cell site location information.
The brief was filed on behalf of DownsizeDC.org, Downsize DC Foundation, United States Justice Foundation, Gun Owners of America, Inc., Gun Owners Foundation, Conservative Legal Defense and Education Fund, and Institute on the Constitution.
Today, Herb Titus spoke at a Conference on Eminent Domain and Land Value Litigation sponsored by the American Law Institute in San Francisco, California.
Herb’s topic was the reemergence of the private property principle in the Fourth Amendment, as reflected in two recent decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court. In United States v. Jones and Jardines v. Florida, the Court ruled that the rights protected by the ban on unreasonable searches and seizures is foremost a protection against trespass against property interests in one’s person, house, paper and effect without regard for the property owner’s expectation of privacy, reasonable or otherwise.
Bob Unruh’s article discusses the tragedy of the U.S. Supreme Court denial of Chris Hedges’ petition for certiorari challenging the constitutionality of National Defense Authorization Act of 2012. NDAA 2012 allows the U.S. military to arrest and detain, without charges, counsel, or trial, anyone thought by the government to be a threat based on vague standards.
Attempting to deflect public wrath, those Republicans and Democrats in Congress who passed the law, and the Obama Administration which wanted it, have changed their public position repeatedly as to how the law would apply to American citizens. Of course, when legislators want to make a law clear, they know how to do it. When they try to make it murky, that too is on purpose.
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