Month in Review – May 2023

Here are the highlights for May:

* Throughout the month of May, AFLC propounded and responded to various discovery requests and filed various discovery motions and briefs in the contentious and important Mast case, which involves a custody dispute over a baby girl.  But this is no run-of-the-mill custody case.

This dispute involves a young Marine assisting an infant child recovered off the battlefield by Army Rangers during a mission to take out a nest of East Turkistan Islamic Party (ETIP), Al Qaeda foreign fighters in Afghanistan in September 2019.

Two of the foreign fighters were the parents of this little girl.  The father was killed in the firefight engaging the Rangers; the mother blew herself up with a suicide pack while holding her months-old baby girl.

Miraculously, the baby survived but was seriously injured.

The Marine and his wife were granted custody of this child, and now that custody is being challenged by those who do not want a Muslim child to be raised by Christians.

We are representing the Marine’s brother, who is embroiled in this legal battle because he assisted his brother with obtaining legal custody of the child.

You can read more about this intriguing case here.

*On May 16, AFLC Co-Founder Robert Muise gave a video presentation on the status of pro-life litigation to a well-attended conference that was held in Washington, D.C.

* On May 18, we filed a “supplemental brief” in federal court in Idaho on behalf of a father and his two sons who were arrested and/or charged for engaging in political speech critical of the City of Moscow.

The lawsuit was filed against the City and several of its officials for the selective enforcement of the law motivated by the government officials’ hostility toward our clients’ conservative political and religious viewpoints and beliefs.

More specifically, two of our clients were arrested and all three were charged under a local ordinance for posting “Soviet Moscow” decals in the City as a protest to the City’s draconian COVID restrictions issued during the pandemic.  The City had long permitted similar postings of various messages and viewpoints, but is now selectively enforcing its laws against our clients based on the content and viewpoint of their message.

* On May 19, we sent a demand letter to the General Counsel for the University of Michigan on behalf of a student who was recently told by the University that her religious exemption request to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate was denied.  The student’s request was subsequently approved on May 24.

It is astonishing that COVID-19 vaccine mandates still exist in light of the evidence that the vaccines do not stop the spread, they do not prevent the illness, and they can cause severe and harmful side effects.

* On May 31, we appeared at a motion hearing to consolidate for purposes of appeal the six Red Rose Rescue cases arising out of a pro-life rescue held in the City of Southfield, Michigan.  All six rescuers were tried together and convicted of similar offenses; yet, the circuit court assigned the six cases to five separate judges.  We are still attempting to get what should be a simple administrative matter worked out in state court.

* In addition to those mentioned above, we have many cases that are still pending/awaiting rulings from the courts, including the following:

American Freedom Law Center v. Michigan Attorney General.  In this case, AFLC is challenging the Michigan AG’s reliance on the SPLC’s “hate group” designation to target such groups via the AG’s “hate” crimes unit.  AFLC is one of several conservative legal organizations that made the SPLC’s hit list.  The case has been awaiting a ruling on cross-motions for summary judgment for over 2 years.

CAIR v. Gaubatz, et al.  In this case, which has been pending for over 10 years, we are representing the Center for Security Policy (CSP) and others in this lawsuit brought by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) based on a video documentary CSP was preparing on the Muslim Brotherhood, of which CAIR is a member.  The case is set to go to trial in 2024.

Wayne Brown v. City of Tulsa, et al.  In this case, we are representing Wayne Brown, who was fired from the Tulsa Police Department for Facebook posts he made prior to his hiring that were favorable of Donald Trump.  A decision on the City’s motion to dismiss has been pending since 2019.

People v. Connolly, et al.  In this case, we are representing four pro-life rescuers who were found guilty of trespassing at an abortion center in Flint, Michigan.  The County prosecutor, who is pro-abortion, charged them with felonious resisting/obstructing a police officer for the pro-lifers’ peaceful “passive resistance.”  We will be filing our appellate brief in the Michigan Court of Appeals in June.

Parker v. Governor of Pennsylvania:  In this case, we are challenging several draconian COVID-19 restrictions imposed by the Pennsylvania Governor during the pandemic.  Like so many other cases, the district court dismissed the challenge on mootness grounds since the pandemic is now over.  The case is pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.  It is one of the last remaining cases challenging the tyranny that we all had to endure during the pandemic.  We pray that a court will finally have the courage to rule on the merits of these challenges.

Huber v. Twitter.  In this case, we are challenging the conspiracy entered into between Twitter and the Biden administration to censor speech critical of the administration’s COVID-19 policies.  We are preparing a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Catholic Healthcare International, Inc. (CHI) v. Genoa Township, Michigan:  In this case, we are representation CHI in this challenge to the Township’s restrictions on CHI’s right to free speech and religious freedom.  The Township is preventing CHI from using its 40-acre property for prayer and worship.  We have an appeal pending in the Sixth Circuit on a preliminary injunction request (which was granted in part and denied in part).  Oral argument has been set for July 19.

Saline Parents v. Attorney General Merrick Garland:  In this case, we are representing parents from Saline, Michigan and Loudon County, Virginia, challenging the U.S. Attorney General’s policy of targeting parents as domestic terrorists for expressing opposition to woke policies at public school board meetings.  The case is on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.  We are awaiting oral argument.

Navy SEALS v. Secretary of the Department of Defense.  In this case, we are challenging the military vaccine mandate on behalf of four Navy SEALs who objected to the mandate on religious grounds.  The case is awaiting a ruling on a pending motion in the district court.

Thank you for your prayers and financial support.  We couldn’t do what we do without them!