From the HSLDA E-lert Service:


3/31/2005 2:39:23 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
North Carolina--Calls Needed to Support Religious Freedom Bill

From the HSLDA E-lert Service...

March 31, 2005

North Carolina--Calls Needed to Support Religious Freedom Bill to
Protect Homeschoolers

Dear HSLDA members and friends:

Good news. The Religious Freedom Act (RFA), House Bill 681, has been
introduced by Representative Russell Capps.

Homeschoolers now have an opportunity to win a solid legislative
victory for religious freedom. In order to achieve this victory, the
Home School Legal Defense Association urges you to immediately contact
your state representative to support the North Carolina Religious
Freedom Restoration Act, House Bill 681.

Passage of a RFA in North Carolina will help maintain your homeschool
freedom. We are using RFAs to help homeschoolers successfully avoid
onerous requirements under the homeschool laws in Pennsylvania and

As of August 2004, by God's grace, more than a quarter of the states
have acted to protect the religious freedom of the citizens in their
states. Rhode Island, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Arizona, South
Carolina, Texas, Idaho, New Mexico, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Alabama
and Oklahoma have passed their own state Religious Freedom Acts.

HSLDA's legal staff has worked with religious freedom coalitions in
the states (and the national state religious freedom coalition),
helped draft legislation, lobbied individual state legislators,
attorney generals, and governor offices, sent out numerous e-lerts,
and provided testimony at some legislative hearings in order to
advance these Religious Freedom Acts. The phone calls of thousands of
homeschoolers particularly contributed to the passage of the RFA's in
Illinois, Arizona, Texas, South Carolina, Idaho, New Mexico and
Oklahoma. Illinois was successful after two HSLDA e-lerts and
tremendous outpouring of calls by homeschoolers convinced legislators
to override the governor's veto.

Religious freedom is one of the fundamental foundation blocks for the
right to homeschool. Therefore, passage of a RFA in North Carolina
will strengthen your right to homeschool.


1) Please call as many members of the committee below and give them
this message:

"Protect religious freedom in North Carolina. Please vote to support
the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, House Bill 681."

You do not need to identify yourself as a homeschooler because this
bill will help protect everyone's religious freedom.

Representatives on the House Judiciary I Committee:

Representative Hugh Hackney, Chairman

Representative Deborah Ross, Vice-Chairman

Representative Bonner Stiller, Vice-Chairman

Representative Martha Alexander

Representative John Blust

Representative Debbie Clary

Representative Melanie Goodwin

Representative Mary Price Harrison

Representative Verla Insko

Representative Paul Miller

Representative Paul Stam

Representative Roger West

Representative Capps, the sponsor of H.B. 681, also sits on this
committee. There is no need to call him.

2) Also call your own state representative and give him the same
message as above.

The general number for the North Carolina General Assembly is
919-733-7928. To learn the name of your representative, use HSLDA's
Legislative Toolbox at: . (If you do not
have Internet access, call your county clerk's office and ask for your
state representative's name).


On June 25, 1997, by a 6-3 majority, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in
The City of Boerne v. Flores that the 1993 federal Religious Freedom
Restoration Act (RFRA) was unconstitutional. By making this ruling,
the Court gave the lowest level of protection to religious liberty,
one of the foundational freedoms of homeschooling. Under this minimal
standard, North Carolina can override a homeschooler or other
citizen's right to freely exercise his religious beliefs merely by
proving that its regulation is "reasonable." Since nearly all state
regulations can be determined to be "reasonable," Christians will

Since the devastating Boerne decision, state and federal courts across
the country have diminished religious freedom in many ways. For

The long standing practice of pastor congregation confidentiality has
been repeatedly violated;

A church sponsored hospital was denied accreditation for refusing to
teach abortion techniques;

There have been conflicts with zoning ordinances, such as the forced
termination of a church ministry to the homeless because it was
located on the second floor of a building with no elevator; and

A church ministry was prohibited from feeding more than 50 people per

In response to the Court's crushing blow to religious freedom, a broad
coalition of various North Carolina groups was formed to support the
North Carolina RFRA. HSLDA is also working with a national coalition
of religious groups to bring additional support for the passage of
this bill. Passage of this act will raise the standard of protection
for religious freedom in North Carolina for individuals, homeschool
parents, churches, and all who desire to freely exercise their
religious beliefs.

If passed, the North Carolina RFRA, will restore the high standard of
protection for religious liberty previously guaranteed in the federal
RFRA and earlier Supreme Court decisions. Under the North Carolina
RFRA, if an individual's religious belief is in conflict with a state
regulation, the state will have to prove, with evidence, that its
regulation is essential to fulfilling the state's compelling interest
and is the least restrictive means of doing so. If the state fails to
carry the burden, the regulation must give way to the individual's
religious freedom. Restoring this protection for religious freedom
will simply "even the playing field."

Don't let one decision by the U.S. Supreme Court denigrate this
priceless inalienable right. Urge your state representative now to
restore protection for religious liberty in North Carolina by
supporting H.B. 681.


Chris Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel

-> How long are you in for?

Some families are facing what seems like a lifelong commitment to
homeschooling, with children at both ends of the spectrum-some
graduating and some just reaching school age. If you're going to
be "in" for a while, consider a lifetime membership with HSLDA.
It's a good deal for families with more than 10 years of
homeschooling ahead.

More reasons to join HSLDA...

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