By Rebecca Blatt
A judge is hearing arguments today in a lawsuit accusing Baltimore of violating the First Amendment rights of pregnancy counseling centers that don't provide abortions or birth control.
Baltimore was the first city in the nation to pass a law requiring pregnancy centers to post disclaimers if they don't provide abortions or birth control services. The city took action out of concern that the pregnancy centers were deceiving women. It says the ordinance is a consumer-protection measure.
The Archdiocese of Baltimore sued in federal court, saying the city is restricting protected speech and singling out the facilities for their anti-abortion views.
The archdiocese has asked a federal judge to strike down the ordinance, while the city moved to dismiss the lawsuit.