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2/22/2011 3:04:57 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
West Virginia--Update on Religious Freedom!

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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West Virginia--Update on Religious Freedom!

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Thank you for contacting members of the Judiciary Committee. Your
calls have made a difference. Yesterday, I was in Charleston to
testify before Subcommittee B in support of House Bill 2873, the
Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). The subcommittee voted in
favor of reporting the bill to the full committee with a
recommendation of "pass." Efforts are now being made to encourage the
Judiciary Committee to place the bill on its agenda.

HSLDA would also like to thank the following delegates who have been
instrumental in supporting the West Virginia RFRA thus far: Delegate
Kelli Sobonya, Delegate John Overington, Delegate Doug Skaff, and
Delegate Jonathan Miller.

This bill is necessary to restore the protection of religious liberty
because of recent United States Supreme Court rulings. We are
continuing to work closely with the Christian Home Educators of West
Virginia (CHEWV) to support this legislation, and we will keep you
informed.

ACTION REQUESTED

If your delegate is on the Judiciary Committee, please contact him and
ask that he do what he can to facilitate getting the bill on the full
committee's agenda. To see the members of the committee and for more
information, visit our bill page at
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10413

To find out who your delegate is, visit:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10414

BACKGROUND

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 doing this, the Court
gave the lowest level of protection to religious liberty. Under this
minimal standard, the state can override a citizen's right to freely
exercise his or her religious beliefs by simply proving that its
regulation is "reasonable." Since nearly all state regulations can be
determined to be "reasonable," religious freedom is exceedingly
limited.

If passed, the West Virginia RFRA would restore the standard of
protection for religious liberty previously guaranteed in the federal
RFRA and earlier Supreme Court decisions. It would prohibit the
government from substantially burdening a person's exercise of
religion unless it meets the highest constitutional test available.
That test requires that the government show that its action which
burdens a person's religious freedom is "essential to further a
compelling governmental interest and it is the least restrictive means
of furthering that interest."

To view Mike Donnelly's complete testimony before the judiciary
committee last fall, click here:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10415

For additional information, visit our issues library at:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10416

Or, view Heritage Communications of West Virginia's detailed analysis
here: http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10417
HSLDA is working closely with the Christian Home Educators of West
Virginia (CHEWV) to support this legislation.

We are standing with you to defend your freedom!

Sincerely,

Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
Staff Attorney

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-> Extreme makeovers are for extreme circumstances...

Most homeschools don't need an extreme makeover, but there is
something to be said for attention to detail and recognition of
accomplishments. Watch the media and you'll soon see that not
everyone wants home educators and homeschooling to look good.
HSLDA works hard to shed light on the good work of home educators
so it's obvious that we don't need someone "making-over" our
homeschools. Join HSLDA and help us show the world that we're fine
as we are . . . thank you!

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1943

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