Sunday, January 24, 2010

CA Marriage Trial Update

See below for the summary of Thursday's proceedings in the Perry v. Schwarzenegger trial, authored by Alliance Defense Fund senior legal counsel Austin R. Nimocks, who is part of the legal team defending the California marriage amendment in federal court in San Francisco. .

Stay tuned for updates throughout the trial here ( and here (



January 21, 2010

ADF Senior Legal Counsel Austin R. Nimocks:

Thursday revealed a staggering amount of anti-Christian sentiments put forth in the plaintiffs’ case, in addition to their continued attack against the democratic process.  Completing the cross-examination of Dr. Gary M. Segura, the professor of political science from Stanford, was the first order of the day.  While Dr. Segura continued his own theme that religion is standing in the way of those who want to redefine marriage from gaining political power, he was also required to make several concessions which were damaging to the plaintiffs’ case.


Among these admissions were several about the reactionary behavior of those who opposed Proposition 8, which resulted in a self-inflicted loss of their own political clout.  Though Dr. Segura attempted to diminish the severity of the wound, something already known by those who supported Proposition 8 became abundantly clear for everyone else during the discussion:  many who opposed Proposition 8 used threats, harassment, intimidation, violence, and property damage to carry their message, while those who supported Proposition 8 employed lawful means to make their points.


This entire trial has been little more than an attempt by activists advancing the homosexual legal agenda to use emotion and sympathy in order to convince the court that marriage is unconstitutional.  But when presented with a real victim, a young girl assaulted by a Castro mob, the mask fell off.  The video played, and as the girl described the attack, jeers, scoffs, and giggles filled the courtroom.


Before leaving the witness stand, Dr. Segura made an astounding statement.  One of his opinions was that the “gay and lesbian community” possessed no “reliable allies” in the political world.  This includes, in his opinion, President Obama, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Rep. Barney Frank, and others whom he dismisses as not being true political allies of those who want to redefine marriage.  This was quite an interesting statement because, as Dr. Segura was giving that testimony, I could not ignore that I was sitting at the counsel table, occupying chairs that are supposed to be occupied by attorneys for both the governor and attorney general of the State of California.  Both Gov. Schwarzenegger and General Brown took solemn oaths to uphold, protect, and defend the constitution and laws of the State of California.  Yet, here the plaintiffs are, attacking the constitution of the State of California, and both Gov. Schwarzenegger and General Brown, as we all know, are refusing to defend the case.  Other examples could be given as well.  Nonetheless, Dr. Segura had the audacity to testify, under oath, that in California, the “gay and lesbian community” has no “reliable allies” in politics.


Following the testimony of Dr. Segura, in a desperate attempt to continue to paint the over 7 million Californians who voted “yes” on Proposition 8 as bigots, the plaintiffs called to the stand Dr. Hak-Shing Tam, one of the official proponents of Proposition 8.  In the courtroom, Dr. Tam represented many of us who are concerned about attempts to redefine marriage in our country.  Dr. Tam is a chemical engineer who cares about his family, his community, and his state.  He decided, like so many others, to get involved and make a difference, so he used his contacts with the Chinese press and Chinese churches to help support Proposition 8.


Like millions of Californians, Dr. Tam shared with the court his belief that the redefinition of of marriage in our society will take a grave toll on our communities and children.  There is a lot of evidence to prove this fact.  Adultery, no-fault divorce, and fatherlessness are just a few of the large problems associated with the erosion of the marriage culture in our country already.  Yet, the plaintiffs today possessed no shame in their efforts to mock Dr. Tam for holding these beliefs.  Dr. Tam was questioned about his affiliations, his associations, who he knew (and who the plaintiffs demanded that he knew, even though he didn’t know them), and what he believed.  In other words, Dr. Tam had his religious and political views placed under a judicial microscope to determine whether they were “correct” in the eyes of the law.  Yes, you heard me right.  The plaintiffs are trying hard to cast as legally wrong the political and religious beliefs of those who do not agree with them.


As the day lingered on, and the assault on Dr. Tam continued, I couldn’t help but think of a famous moment from the past involving Sen. Joseph McCarthy during his grilling of several American citizens during committee hearings.  At a critical moment, when Sen. McCarthy breached an agreement regarding the hearings, Army attorney Joseph Welch came down on him saying, “Let us not assassinate this lad further, Senator....  You’ve done enough.  Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last?  Have you left no sense of decency?”  Had someone stood up and said this today during the cross-examination of Dr. Tam, it wouldn’t have come a moment too soon.


Nonetheless, marriage in California remains the law of the land, and for good reason.  More court on Friday, and into next week.  Stay tuned.

Teacher accused of molesting boys

Sidwell Friends  was Chelsea Clinton's school and where the Obama kids now attend class....




Dear Sidwell Summer Families,


The following letter from Sidwell's Interim Head of School was shared with the Sidwell community Wednesday afternoon and we want to bring this to the attention of the broader Sidwell Summer community as well. Sidwell Summer has always placed the safety of campers and summer staff at the forefront of its programming policies and hiring procedures, and we want to assure families of the gravity we assign to this process. All Sidwell Summer employees are carefully vetted prior to working with any of our programs through a process that includes a detailed application, interviewing, reference checks and the completion of Maryland State and FBI background checks. Additionally, all staff attend mandatory orientation sessions prior to the first day of employment with any camp and sign an Employee Code of Conduct. Our job is to care for your child(ren) while attending any of our programs and that is a responsibility we hol! d with the greatest regard and honor. As educators, camp directors and parents, we feel it is of great importance to stress to you the commitment we make to you and your family with any Sidwell Summer program in which your child may participate. We are available throughout the coming months to offer any support or to answer any questions.




Janet Carter                                        Karen McCann McClelland

Director of Summer Programs               Director of Auxiliary Programs



January 20, 2010



Dear Parents, Students, Teachers, Staff, Campers and Alumni:


The day before the 2009-10 academic year began, theSidwell Friends administration learned of allegations that Middle School teacher Robert A. “Pete” Peterson had engaged in inappropriate conduct toward a minor while away from campus. Mr. Peterson has long been both a teacher of 7th and 8th grade Social Studies and Director of the School’s Camp Corsica.


As a consequence of the allegations, the School placed Mr. Peterson on leave before the academic year began and immediately informed the appropriate authorities. As a condition of his leave, Mr. Peterson has not been permitted on either campus or at any School-sponsored programs or events. 


Since placing Mr. Peterson on leave, the School has been in ongoing communication with the investigators. Maryland authorities recently informed the School that they would be bringing criminal charges against Mr. Peterson. Based on the results of the criminal inquiry and the substance of the charges, the School terminated Mr. Peterson’s employment on January 14, 2010. The School continues to cooperate fully with the investigation.


Trust between an adult and child is the cornerstone of our Friends community. This School is a strong, resilient, and compassionate one. At this time, we must draw on those strengths and focus, most particularly, on the needs of our students and campers. To that end, we have arranged for additional counseling services for students, families, and employees. Please feel free to contact, in confidence, my office, should you require assistance or wish to share information.


Sincerely yours,



Stephen K. Barker


Interim Head of School

Sidwell Friends School

3825 Wisconsin Ave, NW

Washington, DC 20016