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Texas Supreme Court sides with pro-life activist in free speech case

The Texas Supreme Court has ruled in favor of a pro-life activist who found himself subject to a lawsuit for saying that abortion advocacy organizations “murder innocent unborn children.”


The Texas Supreme Court issued a ruling in the consolidated cases of The Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity v. Mark Lee Dickson and Right to Life East Texas and Mark Lee Dickson and Right to Life East Texas v. The Afiya Center and Texas Equal Access Fund on Friday.

The cases concerned pro-life activist Mark Lee Dickson’s advocacy on behalf of the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn movement, specifically his effort to craft an ordinance to ban abortion in the city of Waskom, Texas, and his comments about abortion advocacy groups.

As explained in the opinion, the Waskom ordinance, approved in 2019, decried abortion as “an act of murder with malice afterthought” and added the plaintiff organizations to a list of “criminal organizations” that “perform abortions and assist others in obtaining abortions.” The language of the ordinance was later amended to remove the references to the plaintiffs and others as “criminal organizations” and the city itself was never a party to a lawsuit.


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