Amarillo opera shines

In doing itself proud with its production of “Die Fledermaus” last Saturday, Amarillo Opera also did its city proud. Amarillo now has a regional opera company that must rate high among those in American cities of its size. I’m sure Saturday's large and obviously delighted audience would agree. Congratulations to Mary Jane Johnson, the fairly new director of the company, and to all those who took part in the performance.

Donald Mace Williams, Canyon


Court faces weighty issues

The first Monday of October, that’s when the Supreme Court begins each new term. When the gavel drops, the Supremes will review a host of significant legal issues. In addition I expect continued efforts to help (the court) heal itself. Among others:

The court will consider whether the prohibition against employment discrimination “because of ... sex” includes bias based on sexual orientation or transgender status (Bostock v. Clayton Co.) The court will revisit the longstanding interpretation of (Title Vll, Civil Rights Act of 1964) and the binary concept of sex..MWLGBTQ?.

#2; Many states forbid aid to educational institutions that have a religious affiliation. However, based on a 2017 SCOTUS ruling, a church can’t be denied access to a state program that helps nonprofit groups buy rubber playground surfaces made from recycled tires. Espinoza v. Montana is under appeal. The challenge argues that a Montana tax credit denial (voucher type) ruling violates rights under the U.S. Constitution to free exercise of religion and equal protection under the law.

#3; The court will also review the inalienable (New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. city of New York) right to possess a firearm beyond one’s front porch. This is the appeal that triggered a “friend of the court” brief (to the Supreme Court) from several Democrat Senators, stating, “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it. Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics.’”

The three court cases above are expected to be resolved by the end of this Supreme Court term, June 2020. In God We Trust.

Chip Staniswalis, Amarillo