News shorts, April 2010
1. Supreme Court accepts Catholic Church abuse case
The Catholic Church may have found a way out of its abuse scandals. The United States Supreme Court agreed Friday to hear an appeal based on freedom of religion grounds. The New York Times praised the move, editorializing Saturday that exoneration of the priests would be a welcome triumph for the "respectful treatment of the First Amendment".
2. To save schools, Vermont makes abortion illegal
Putting the public good above a few vocal opponents, the Vermont legislature this week imposed the strictest anti-choice laws in the nation. Lawmakers expect a court challenge, but are confident that the right to a robust public school system overrides other concerns. Alison Clarkson (D—Woodstock) stated, "this is an opportunity for us to recapture -- if decreased enrollment is one of our challenges -- an opportunity ... that really encourages kids to go to school in Vermont". The Burlington Free Press praised the new law, editorializing that women who terminate their pregnancies effectively "abandon public schools and take taxpayer money with them [which] undermines the public schools and multiplies the system's financial challenges". The bill was quickly signed by governor Jim Douglas (R) at a ceremony in Education Commissioner Armando Vilaseca's office.