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Category: Constitutional Structure

Freedom Center on the Cowboy & Judge Show

Freedom Center on the Cowboy & Judge Show

The Freedom Center of Missouri’s Director of Litigation, Dave Roland, recently sat down for an interview with the Cowboy & Judge show on ABC30 in St. Louis. This wide-ranging conversation covers the organization’s perspective on individual liberty, its relationship to Dave’s religious background, and the challenges inherent in doing high-level public interest litigation.

Freedom Center Files Brief in Support of Second Amendment Preservation Act

Freedom Center Files Brief in Support of Second Amendment Preservation Act

The Freedom Center has filed an important brief on behalf of Gun Owners of America, Inc., and the Gun Owners Foundation in support of Missouri’s new Second Amendment Preservation Act (SAPA). The statute prohibits state and local officials in Missouri from assisting in the enforcement of federal firearm laws that have no parallel under Missouri law. In other words, it requires them to focus on enforcing Missouri’s firearm laws, not those made in Washington, DC. Almost immediately after the law…

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VICTORY! Court of Appeals Orders St. Louis Circuit Attorney to Produce Public Records

VICTORY! Court of Appeals Orders St. Louis Circuit Attorney to Produce Public Records

After two years of litigating against St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner on behalf of acclaimed journalist John Solomon, the Freedom Center notched an important victory for government transparency. Solomon had requested all records showing Gardner’s communications with a range of influential people, including George Soros and other prominent left-leaning donors, in the days before she filed criminal charges against former governor Eric Greitens. Gardner initially didn’t respond at all, then refused to produce any of the requested records. The…

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Federal Judge: City may limit Good Samaritans’ ability to feed the homeless

Federal Judge: City may limit Good Samaritans’ ability to feed the homeless

A federal judge in St. Louis has ruled that St. Louis may punish Good Samaritans for providing meals to the homeless unless those Good Samaritans first comply with the same costly and burdensome regulations that govern restaurants and grocery stores. The plaintiffs, Pastor Ray Redlich and his colleague, Chris Ohnimus, regularly seek out hungry neighbors on the streets of St. Louis, obeying their Christian faith’s command to provide food to those in need. As Ray and Chris told the court,…

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Happy Birthday, Missouri Constitution!

Happy Birthday, Missouri Constitution!

On July 19, 1820, Missouri’s first Constitutional Convention signed and adopted the state’s first constitution. With the foundational document of statehood thus in place, Missouri elected its first state government and federal Congressional representatives in the fall of 1820, although Congress refused formally to recognize Missouri’s admission to the Union until August 10, 1821. In the intervening two centuries Missourians have drafted several other constitutions, actually adopting new ones in 1865, 1875, and 1945. Several years ago the Freedom Center’s…

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St. Louis Lawsuit Against Second Amendment Preservation Act is Totally Baseless

St. Louis Lawsuit Against Second Amendment Preservation Act is Totally Baseless

The Missouri state legislature recently passed (and Governor Parson quickly signed) HB 85, the Second Amendment Preservation Act, a bill designed to ensure that state and local law enforcement in Missouri are focused on enforcing gun laws passed by our own lawmakers in Jefferson City, not the folks in Washington, DC. Opponents of this bill have loudly and repeatedly claimed that SAPA is unconstitutional… but most have declined to offer any legal analysis that would actually support these claims. At…

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NEW CASE: Freedom Center Challenges St. Louis City’s Requirement That Political Candidates Must Own Private Property

NEW CASE: Freedom Center Challenges St. Louis City’s Requirement That Political Candidates Must Own Private Property

As seems to happen every few years, candidates for political office are once again trying to knock their opponents off the ballot – this time for the Democratic Primary for nomination to serve on the St. Louis City Board of Aldermen. In one particular case, incumbent Third Ward Alderman Brandon Bosley is arguing that his opponent, Herdosia Bentum, should be removed from the ballot either because she has not for the past two years been an “assessed taxpayer of the city” or…

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NEW CASE: Government Watchdog Sues City for Banning Her From City Hall

NEW CASE: Government Watchdog Sues City for Banning Her From City Hall

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                                      CONTACT:               Dave Roland November 10, 2020                                                                                          (314) 604-6621 Government Watchdog Sues City for Banning Her From City Hall Mexico, Missouri—Rebecca Varney worked so hard to keep the local government in Edgar Springs, Missouri, transparent and accountable to the community that the government banned her from City Hall. In a new lawsuit filed by the Freedom Center of Missouri, Varney has decided to fight “City Hall” for the right to…

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Missouri Courts Must Uphold Citizens’ Right to Possess Firearms for Defensive Purposes

Missouri Courts Must Uphold Citizens’ Right to Possess Firearms for Defensive Purposes

In 2014, Missouri voters passed Amendment 5, which updated Article I, Section 23 of the Missouri Constitution, which protects “the right of every citizen to keep and bear arms, ammunition, and accessories typical to the normal function of such arms, in defense of his home, person, family and property[.]” The amendment was explicitly designed to give this right the most extensive protections possible, requiring courts to subject to “strict scrutiny” any restriction on citizens’ rights of self-defense, and obligating the…

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules That First Amendment Prohibits State Constitutions From Requiring Religious Discrimination

U.S. Supreme Court Rules That First Amendment Prohibits State Constitutions From Requiring Religious Discrimination

In a landmark 7-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court has ruled in Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer that the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment forbids states to categorically exclude persons or organizations from government benefits simply because the persons or organizations happen to be religious.  The case involved Article I, Section 7 of the Missouri Constitution, which the state had interpreted to preclude a church in Columbia, Missouri, from being considered for a state-funded grant that would offset…

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