Law center battles to change culture, protect life

.- The five attorneys at the Thomas More Law Center — along with 403 volunteer lawyers across the country — have take on 200 cases in 40 states in an effort to change American culture and to protect life, religious freedoms and family values.

The law center, its work and mission were recently featured in The Detroit News. The nonprofit organization got a lot of media attention recently during a 40-day trial defending the decision of a school board in Dover, Pa., to require science teachers to tell students about intelligent design.

The Detroit News feature article notes that the law firm works exclusively on Christian causes and has been involved in a variety of cases, from defending the 50-year display of a 29-foot cross atop Mount Soledad in California to representing 12 pro-life activists who were fined millions for publishing the names and addresses of abortion doctors in Oregon.

It has taken on Ten Commandments cases and worked to stop same-sex marriage rights in several states. It won a case for a high school student who had been denied by her school to get her opposing views on homosexuality discussed during a Diversity Week.

The law center also won the case for a family over a neighborhood association, which wanted the family to remove a Nativity scene from their front yard. As well, it recently reviewed ballot language proposed by a pro-life group, which seeks to amend Michigan's Constitution and define life as beginning at conception.

"If we succeed in those issues, we will succeed in returning to our culture established by our Founding Fathers," Richard Thompson, 68, president, co-founder and chief counsel of the law center, told the Detroit News.

Thompson said the law center is working to ensure that the rights of Christians are not trampled on and to reform what he sees as an increasingly anti-Christian society. Thompson told the newspaper he is confident the day will come when the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.

Founding the center

Thompson and Domino's Pizza founder Tom Monaghan founded the Thomas More Law Center in 1999, after Thompson lost his elected seat as Oakland County prosecutor in the wake of trying to prosecute Dr. Jack Kevorkian. He and Monaghan agreed that culture wars were being waged and won in the courts.

Monaghan put up the $500,000 to start the law firm, and increased its funding annually through mid-2004. Now, the $2.3 million public interest law firm is funded by 50,000 individuals with $25 annual memberships and other benefactors.

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