A Texas high school student who claimed her student identification was the “Mark of the Beast” because it was implanted with a radio-frequency identification chip has lost her federal court bid Tuesday challenging her suspension for refusing to wear the card around her neck.
Radio-frequency identification devices are a daily part of the electronic age — found in passports, and library and payment cards. Eventually they’re expected to replace bar-code labels on consumer goods. Now schools across the nation are slowly adopting them as well.
Northside Independent School District in San Antonio began issuing the RFID-chip-laden student-body cards when the semester began in the fall. The ID badge has a bar code associated with a student’s Social Security number, and the RFID chip monitors pupils’ movements on campus, from when they arrive until when they leave.
Sophomore Andrea Hernandez was notified in November by the Northside Independent School District in San Antonio that she won’t be able to continue attending John Jay High School unless she wears the badge around her neck. The district said the girl, who objects largely on religious grounds, would have to attend another high school that does not employ the RFID tags.
Help Wanted (Christians Only): Taxpayer-Funded ‘Crisis Pregnancy Centers’ Proselytize and Discriminate in Hiring
Is it time to turn the tables on the religious right? If they want to make defunding planned parenthood their prime goal, then perhaps it’s time to defund faith based initiatives that violate constitutional principles.
As Resnick notes, “While federal law prohibits employment discrimination based on religious beliefs, there is an exception for religious organizations - a category that seems to include the Rapid City center and other [crisis pregnancy centers]. And in many cases, it’s perfectly legal for these groups to receive taxpayer funding, even if they practice religious hiring discrimination.”
This is more fallout from the ill-conceived “faith-based” initiative. For years, Americans United has warned that allowing sectarian organizations to take public funds and discriminate in hiring on religious grounds is unfair. This policy, combined with the rabid determination of lawmakers to control the private health matters of the people, has created this perfect storm.
The first step is to cut off all public money to these “crisis” clinics. They have the right to exist, but they should be treated like what they are, religious ministries, and denied tax aid. Let them get by on voluntary donations.
Calling access to contraception a “settled issue,” Republican Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley said a bill that would allow New Hampshire employers to stop providing health care coverage for birth control on religious grounds is unlikely to pass the Senate in its current form.
The bill would amend a 12-year-old state law that requires insurance companies to pay for contraceptives such as birth control pills, as well as doctor consultations for contraception, if their insurance plans include other drug coverage.
The bill was approved by the Republican-controlled House last week, championed by Speaker William O’Brien, who has said an existing state law that mandates contraception coverage limits religious freedom.
“I’m not in the business of prediction at this point, but I think it’s going to be pretty hard to pass the contraception bill the way it was sent over,” Bradley said on Tuesday during a meeting with the Editorial Board of Foster’s Daily Democrat. “There are some problems in it.”