Dallas Voice: Judge says lesbian mom’s partner must go; Enforces ‘morality clause’

Page Price and Carolyn Compton have been together for almost three years, but a Collin County judge is forcing them apart.

Judge John Roach Jr., a Republican who presides over the 296th District Court, enforced the “morality clause” in Compton’s divorce papers on Tuesday, May 7. Under the clause, someone who has a “dating or intimate relationship” with the person or is not related “by blood or marriage” is not allowed after 9 p.m. when the children are present. Price was given 30 days to move out of the home because the children live with the couple.

Price posted about the judge’s ruling on Facebook last week, writing that the judge placed the clause in the divorce papers because he didn’t like Compton’s “lifestyle.”

“Our children are all happy and well adjusted. By his enforcement, being that we cannot marry in this state, I have been ordered to move out of my home,” Price wrote.

Price also mentions that Compton’s ex-husband rarely sees their two children and was once charged with stalking Compton. She said he also hired a private investigator in order to bring the case before the judge. Court records show the ex-husband, Joshua Compton, was charged with third-degree felony stalking in 2011 but pleaded to a misdemeanor charge of criminal trespassing.


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Reuters: Court may limit use of race in college admission decisions

Tourists walk in front of the Supreme Court building in Washington, March 24, 2013. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Thirty-five years after the Supreme Court set the terms for boosting college admissions of African Americans and other minorities, the court may be about to issue a ruling that could restrict universities’ use of race in deciding who is awarded places.

The case before the justices was brought by Abigail Fisher, a white suburban Houston student who asserted she was wrongly rejected by the University of Texas at Austin while minority students with similar grades and test scores were admitted.

The ruling is the only one the court has yet to issue following oral arguments in cases heard in October and November, the opening months of the court’s annual term which lasts until the early summer. A decision might come as early as Monday, before the start of a two-week recess.

As hard as it is to predict when a ruling will be announced, it is more difficult to say how it might change the law. Still, even a small move in the Texas case could mark the beginning of a new chapter limiting college administrators’ discretion in using race in deciding on admissions.

For decades, dating back at least to the John F. Kennedy administration of the 1960s, U.S. leaders have struggled with what “affirmative action” should be taken to help blacks and other minorities. In the early years, it was seen as a way to remedy racial prejudice and discrimination; in the more modern era, as a way to bring diversity to campuses and workplaces.

Since 1978, the Supreme Court has been at the center of disputes over when universities may consider applicants’ race. In that year’s groundbreaking Bakke decision from a University of California medical school, the justices forbade quotas but said schools could weigh race with other factors.


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The Washington Post: National conservative group mounts new lobbying push for gay marriage in Minnesota, elsewhere

FILE - In this April 18, 2013, file photo Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton tell hundreds who turned out to rally at the State Capitol, in St. Paul, Minn. in support of a bill to legalize gay marriage that he hoped legislators will pass this year. A spokesman for American Unity PAC tells The Associated Press that the group has established a lobbying operation and already spent more than $250,000 to lobby Republican lawmakers in Minnesota, with plans to spend more. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)

A national group of prominent GOP donors that supports gay marriage is pouring new money into lobbying efforts to get Republican lawmakers to vote to make it legal.

American Unity PAC was formed last year to lend financial support to Republicans who bucked the party’s longstanding opposition to gay marriage. Its founders are launching a new lobbying organization, American Unity Fund, and already have spent more than $250,000 in Minnesota, where the Legislature could vote on the issue as early as next week.

The group has spent $500,000 on lobbying since last month, including efforts in Rhode Island, Delaware, Indiana, West Virginia and Utah.Billionaire hedge fund manager and Republican donor Paul Singer launched American Unity PAC. The lobbying effort is the next phase as the push for gay marriage spreads to more states, spokesman Jeff Cook-McCormac told The Associated Press.

“What you have is this network of influential Republicans who really want to see the party embrace the freedom to marry, and believe it’s not only the right thing for the country but also good politics,” Cook-McCormac said.

In Minnesota, the money has gone to state groups that are lobbying Republican lawmakers and for polling on gay marriage in a handful of suburban districts held by Republicans. So far, only one Minnesota Republican lawmaker has committed to voting to legalize gay marriage: Sen. Branden Petersen, of Andover.

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Yahoo News: Boston bombing suspect’s arrest presents intelligence opportunity, legal challenges

BOSTON – Keeping bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev alive and able to answer questions would be a badly-needed intelligence coup for terror investigators, a former U.S. District Attorney told Yahoo News on Saturday.

“The fear of law enforcement has always been the small, insular cells that are kind of under the radar,” said Richard Roper, a federal prosecutor for 21 years. “Either the lone wolf or the small cells … they’re difficult to obtain intelligence on. I hope they get some good stuff out of him.”

On Saturday, Dzhokhar was reportedly clinging to life and under heavy guard at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. He apparently suffered gunshot wounds to the neck and leg during separate gun battles with authorities on Friday.

Tsarnaev, 19, and his brother, 26-year-old Tamerlan Tsarnaev, are believed to have planted the two backpack bombs near the finish line of Monday’s Boston Marathon. The twin explosions killed three people and injured 180 others……..


“There’s a need to immediately question the guy whether you Mirandize him or not to save lives,” Roper said. “The question is how far do you go before it turns into a custodial interrogation?”

Republican Senators John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina went a step further, suggesting Dzhokhar be treated as an enemy combatant like a soldier captured in war. The move drew the ire of longtime McCain aide and speechwriter Mark Salter.

“My friend, Lindsey Graham, is wrong on this,” Salter posted on his Facebook page. “However unforgivable his crimes, he’s a US citizen, arrested on US soil, with, at this time, no known associations with foreign terrorist organizations at war with the U.S. To declare him an “enemy combatant,” and deny him his rights is un-American.”


What do you all think, does the constitution only apply to some citizens or all?

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The Week: 11 countries where gay marriage is legal

Culture wars! They are not, contrary to what U.S. media coverage might suggest, a wholly American phenomena.

On Wednesday, after facing stiff resistance from conservative group Family First, the New Zealand parliament passed a bill legalizing same-sex marriage, according to NPR.

The move comes a week after the French senate voted to legalize gay marriage despite the 340,000 people who had previously protested in opposition at the Eiffel Tower. Before that, Uruguay’s parliament voted to become the second country in Latin America to recognize gay marriage despite strong Catholic opposition, according to The Guardian. (Argentina is the other Latin American country where same-sex marriage is legal.) The bills in New Zealand, France, and Uruguay are all expected to be signed into law.

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Georgia high school to hold first desegregated prom

As Quanesha Wallace remembers, it was around this time last year when the idea first came up at Wilcox County High School. It was nothing big, just chatter about prom, school, what comes next, what they’d change.

If things were different, someone said, we’d all go to the same prom.

For as long as anyone could remember, students in their South Georgia community went to separate proms, and homecoming dances, too. White students from Wilcox County attend one. Black students, another. They’re private, invitation-only events organized by parents and students, not the school district. Schools have long been desegregated, but in Wilcox County, the dances never changed.

The friends all agreed they’d go to an integrated prom, Quanesha said, and when they asked, others said, “Yeah, I’d go, too.”

“We are all friends,” Quanesha’s friend, Stephanie Sinnot, told CNN affiliate WGXA-TV in Macon, Georgia. “That’s just kind of not right that we can’t go to prom together.”

So now it’s April, and prom is coming up, and these black and white friends, longtime pals who go to classes together and play sports together and hang out together, are going to prom together, too. For the first, the students are organizing an integrated dance, one that welcomes any of Wilcox County High’s 400 students.Wilcox High School students - photo from WGXA via CNN

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Rand Paul offers up alternative Immigration Plan From business week: Paul Looks to Broaden Appeal by Backing Immigration Shift

Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky endorsed immigration changes that would give legal status to undocumented immigrants in the U.S. in a move to broaden his appeal ahead of a potential 2016 Republican presidential bid.

Paul’s plan, outlined in a speech yesterday, would create work visas for an estimated 11 million immigrants in the U.S. illegally and let Congress verify border security before revamping the nation’s immigration laws.

Paul set his proposal apart from one being crafted by a bipartisan group of senators, including another potential 2016 Republican presidential candidate, Marco Rubio of Florida. Their plan would provide a pathway to citizenship.

“I’m not creating a new line for citizenship,” Paul said on CNN yesterday. “I’m just saying, you get in the current line that exists.”

“You don’t have to go back home, but we also don’t want to put you at the front of the line because that’s unfair to people who’ve been waiting legally,” he told reporters on a conference call yesterday.


What do you think about Paul’s plans and the other bipartisan plan proposed?  Click below for the full article.



More on Immigration Bill From Bloomberg Business Week: Criticism of immigration bill from left and right

To some conservatives, it’s amnesty.

To some immigration advocates, it’s unnecessarily punitive.

The Senate’s new bipartisan immigration bill drew criticism from the right and from the left Tuesday — convincing members of the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” that wrote it that they’re on the right track.

“This has something for everybody to hate,” said Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz.

Said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.:  “No one gets everything they want.”

Schumer and another leader of the effort, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., met with President Barack Obama on Tuesday to brief him on the bill, a top second-term priority for the president. Obama issued a statement after the meeting supporting the Senate effort and urging action.

“This bill is clearly a compromise, and no one will get everything they wanted, including me. But it is largely consistent with the principles that I have repeatedly laid out for comprehensive reform,” Obama said. “I urge the Senate to quickly move this bill forward and, as I told Sens. Schumer and McCain, I stand willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that comprehensive immigration reform becomes a reality as soon as possible.”

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AP News: Bipartisan bill would remake immigration system

The U.S. immigration system would undergo dramatic changes under a bipartisan Senate bill that puts a new focus on prospective immigrants’ merit and employment potential, while seeking to end illegal immigration once and for all by creating legal avenues for workers to come here.

The bill would put the 11 million immigrants in the country illegally on a 13-year path to U.S. citizenship that would cost each $2,000 in fines plus additional fees, and would begin only after steps have been taken to secure the border, according to an outline of the measure.

The sweeping legislation also would remake the nation’s inefficient legal immigration system, creating new immigration opportunities for tens of thousands of high- and low-skilled workers, as well as a new “merit visa” aimed at bringing people with talents to the U.S. Senators planned to formally introduce the bill Tuesday, but a planned press event including immigration advocates, business groups, religious leaders and others was delayed until later in the week because of the tragedy at the Boston Marathon.

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