1ST AMENDMENT BLUES: DeSantis sued by synagogue for violating their right to religious freedom
A Boynton Beach synagogue says the Florida law blocking abortion after 15 weeks signed by Governor Ron DeSantis is a violation of their religious rights and freedoms. Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor, located in Leon County, said in their suit:
“For Jews, all life is precious and thus the decision to bring new life into the world is not taken lightly or determined by state fiat. This failure to maintain the separation of church and state, like so many other laws in other lands throughout history, threatens the Jewish family, and thus also threatens the Jewish people by imposing the laws of other religions upon Jews.”
Jews for a Secular Democracy applauded the congregation’s move against DeSantis, saying on Twitter:
Florida's 15-week abortion ban is a means by which one religious group is imposing its own views on all Florida residents. Other religious groups, such as Jews, do not share the same view of the beginning of life. We applaud this legal suit pushing back!https://t.co/uKDVFoksb3
— Jews for a Secular Democracy (@JFASD_ORG) June 13, 2022
According to The Miami Herald, the Florida law prevents physicians from performing abortions after 15 weeks, calculated from the first day of the woman’s last menstrual cycle.
Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court decided to consider the case of Dobbs v. Mississippi, pro-choice advocates have braced for the eventual overturning of Roe v. Wade, the decision securing a woman’s right to privacy and body autonomy issued five decades ago. It was a fear that was confirmed by Justice Alito’s leaked opinion in the case, confirming the Court’s intent to reverse Roe. Meanwhile, GOP-led state legislatures have been enacting legislation limiting women’s access to reproductive healthcare, and, after the leak, they began drafting “trigger” laws to go into effect when the Supreme Court officially ruled.
The Jewish community isn’t alone in feeling their rights are being violated by DeSantis-backed laws inspired by White Christian Nationalism. The Daily Beast‘s Wajahat Ali proclaimed on Twitter that Muslims support the synagogue:
Muslims co-sign with the Jews. Stop saying this "Sharia in America" or "Talibanization." Nope. This is white Christian nationalism. Name it and recognize it. https://t.co/fUnJGl3eSG
— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) June 17, 2022
The synagogue’s suit isn’t the only one that anti-abortion activists and legislators will have to fend off. Florida health care providers have also filed a lawsuit alleging that HB 5 — scheduled to go into effect July 1st — is not only a violation of women’s rights but the state’s constitution, saying in the complaint:
“Despite Florida’s history of protecting the right to abortion, the Florida legislature recently engaged in a brazen attempt to override the will of the Florida people. The legislature passed House Bill 5, a law that criminalizes pre-viability abortions in direct violation of Floridians’ fundamental privacy rights guaranteed by the Florida Constitution.”
Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor’s Rabbi Barry Silver, Esq. told CBS 12 that the law “discriminates against Jews, the mentally ill, and those who do not share the views of fundamentalist Christianity.”
The separation of Church and State is one of the bedrocks of our country’s democracy, a democracy that is as diverse in religion as in people. The mono-theocratic, Christo-fascist movement emanating from the right and embraced by Ron DeSantis is not only a violation of the separation of Church and State established in the First Amendment, but some could say it’s a violation of human rights as well.
Follow Ty Ross on Twitter @cooltxchick
that supports ONLY good Democratic candidates
Please consider supporting the fund. Thank you!