Abortion, embryo-destructive research, assisted reproductive technologies, artificial wombs, genetically modified babies, physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia. These are just a small sampling of the bioethical questions our country will have to address in the coming years. Lying beneath these questions are competing visions of what it means to be a human being and how human beings flourish. Join an academic all-star panel as they discuss the ethics, policies, and philosophies at the core of today’s debates. All three scholars served in various capacities on The President’s Council on Bioethics, and have written extensively on these issues, including a new Harvard University Press book by Carter Snead, What It Means To Be Human: The Case for the Body in Public Bioethics.


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Does school choice treat children as widgets? Does it hurt children with special needs? Does school choice have racist origins? Does it siphon money from public schools and balkanize Americans? In School Choice Myths: Setting the Record Straight on Education Freedom, a new book edited by Corey DeAngelis (Reason Foundation) and Neal McCluskey (Cato Institute), 14 of the nation’s top education policy scholars dispel these and other misconceptions. Join us to hear from several of the book’s contributors, and to equip yourself with the information you need to shatter falsehoods standing in the way of education choice and freedom.


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Foster families provide life-saving care for thousands of children each year. These families, in turn, are served by various agencies, both religious and secular, which equip, support, and empower them to care for children. Unfortunately, the City of Philadelphia told longtime foster parents that they could no longer work with Catholic Social Services — because the City doesn’t like its Catholic beliefs about marriage. Now, the Supreme Court will decide the fate of this adoption agency and determine whether these families can continue to serve children in need. Join us for an expert panel featuring a foster care policy expert, a foster and adoptive mother supported by a faith-affirming agency, and the lawyer from the religious liberty law firm Becket who argued on behalf of the families at the Supreme Court.


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It has been an unprecedented election season, including a global pandemic, widespread civil unrest, and the increasing polarization of the country. Americans have a lot to contemplate as they go to the ballot box. But once the people have spoken…it’s time to analyze the results.

Join our all-star panel for unique insights on how the results could translate into policy and action. There will be no shortage of colorful commentary, as our panelists discuss the political implications in the aftermath of what promises to be an historic election. What do the results mean for our constitutional republic? Will there be changes to our foreign policy? How will the results affect the economy and jobs? What are the ramifications for the Supreme Court? We will explore all of these questions and more!

The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies is honored to announce that former Attorney General Ed Meese will deliver our thirteenth Joseph Story Distinguished Lecture. The event will be a conversation with him, reflecting on his life, legacy, and over 50 years within the conservative movement.

The namesake of the lecture—the eminent jurist Joseph Story—became the youngest Associate Justice ever to serve on the United States Supreme Court when he was appointed by President Madison in 1812. Story made a significant mark on American law in his thirty-three years on the bench, but his greatest contribution to jurisprudence is his renowned Commentaries on the Constitution, in which he set forth a philosophy of judicial restraint. This lecture series celebrates his legacy.

Operation Warp Speed (OWS) is an unprecedented public-private partnership to produce and deliver 300 million doses of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine by January 2021. Thus far nearly $10 billion has been directed by Congress to this effort which carries the promise of an early end to the pandemic and the resumption by Americans of their normal lives. The two main government partners within OWS are the Health and Human Services and Defense Departments. The Department of Defense is providing key assistance and capabilities including assistance with logistics, contracting and supply chain management. Something else DOD is providing is leadership.

In May 2020 Army General Gus Perna was weeks away from concluding a 39 year military career when President Donald Trump called upon him to serve as the Chief Operating Officer for OWS. Confirmed by the Senate on July 2, General Perna with Dr. Moncef Slaoui, the Chief Scientific Advisor, now helps lead this historic undertaking which has been compared to the country’s WWII Manhattan Project.

Every night, nearly half a million Americans sleep in homeless shelters, cars, and the streets. Sadly, many of these citizens struggle with addiction or mental illness. Yet in America’s most progressive cities, left-wing mayors and city councils spend billions of dollars on homelessness programs with insufficient results. Why do the most progressive cities have the highest rates of homelessness? What conservative solutions could stop this problem?

In the wake of the COVID-19 lockdowns and widespread street unrest, cities are now grappling with what to do about homelessness. Join The Heritage Foundation as we expose the left’s counterproductive approach and bring to light thoughtful, compassionate conservative solutions for homelessness.

From building the border wall to rescinding the unconstitutional DACA program to stopping illegal immigrant caravans from Central America, the Trump Administration has made a dizzying number of border security and immigration changes. Border security and immigration are regularly among the top issues that Americans care about because they affect so many aspects of our lives – the economy, crime, public health, education, culture, and more.

The meaningful progress of the Trump Administration is opposed by the radical left who seek to undo these changes and impose an open borders immigration policy, along with amnesty for millions of illegal aliens already in the United States. The Trump Administration made these changes in the face of stiff and coordinated opposition via lawsuits and judicial activism, congressional inaction, and state and local sanctuary jurisdictions. This opposition has real consequences, including heartbreaking drug overdoses and violent gang activity in the United States from the deadly drugs and MS-13 gang members crossing our border. In 2020, COVID-19 further complicated America’s border and immigration issues, leading to travel restrictions, employment visa and foreign student policy changes to protect public health and prioritize Americans getting back to work. America will continue to experience dynamic immigration issues when countries recover from COVID-19 and have to address their struggling economies.

The emerging market, especially in Africa, has achieved many technological advances in the past several years. Meanwhile, China’s burgeoning fifth-generation (5G) wireless network offers developing countries faster access to the rest of the world and the ability to expand their industries with the use of digital technology. But, at what cost?

The U.S., arm-in-arm with the rest of the free world, must mitigate the risks associated with government-controlled Chinese companies deploying 5G wireless networks in emerging markets, and work to develop viable alternatives to Chinese technology. Such a presence is a clear national security threat that compromises global telecommunications and data infrastructure, and ultimately affects how countries are governed.

In some respects, 2020 has been a disappointing year for the Second Amendment. The Supreme Court continued its decade-long silence on this important constitutional right, and gun control legislation remains a potent rallying cry for many local, state, and national lawmakers. And yet, 2020 is nevertheless poised to be a year of Second Amendment resurgence. Nationwide protests, violent crime spikes in major cities, and calls to defund or abolish police departments have led to record-breaking numbers of gun sales. Nearly 40% of new sales during the first half of the year were by first-time buyers, with an estimated 2.5 million Americans joining the ranks of gun owners between January and June.

Who are these new gun owners? What motivates them? What obstacles do they face in the exercise of their Second Amendment rights? How might this unprecedented spike in first-time gun owners affect the national conversation about the right to keep and bear arms? Join our important conversation about the changing landscape of gun ownership in America and what this means for the larger debate on gun control.

The 2020 presidential election continues to get more tumultuous as Election Day approaches. With concern over the threat of COVID-19 and an explosion in election-related litigation, there is an organized push for all-mail voting as a substitute for casting ballots at the polls. Given the documented security vulnerabilities and serious problems with delayed and misdelivery of mail-in or absentee ballots, how safe is the vote-by-mail process? Join us for a deep dive into what is happening on the ground in states across the country, as our experts unpack the organized campaign being waged to compromise election integrity.

We will cover the issue from all angles, including perspectives from a current secretary of state, an investigative journalist, and an election lawyer actively engaged in litigation in the states.

Several months ago, the first reports of a deadly virus in Wuhan began to surface. As the global health community sought answers, the Chinese Communist Party hid behind a Great Wall of Secrecy. Now, as the Chinese government pursues a doubling of their nuclear arsenal, they’re hiding behind the same wall. What are China’s true nuclear ambitions? How must the U.S.—and the world—respond?

The Heritage Foundation is pleased to host Ambassador Marshall Billingslea, Special Presidential Envoy for Arms Control, to discuss all this and more.

President Trump has nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the U.S. Supreme Court. Barrett has served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit since November 2017 and has authored over 100 opinions during her nearly three years on the bench. Before becoming a federal judge, she was a law professor at the University of Notre Dame Law School. During her last confirmation, a diverse group of 48 professors from leading law schools lauded her contributions to legal scholarship as “rigorous, fair-minded, respectful, and constructive.” She has been praised as a judge who tries to interpret the Constitution according to its original public meaning. The Senate Judiciary Committee will soon hold hearings to examine Judge Barrett’s record and judicial philosophy. What kind of judge is she? How will her confirmation impact the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence? Join us as a panel of scholars analyze Judge Barrett’s most significant rulings and legal writings and her likely impact on the Court.


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India and the United States find themselves increasingly converging on the key geopolitical issues of our time: counterterrorism, the Free and Open Indo-Pacific, rules-based order, and the need for transparent and sustainable infrastructure in South Asia. As an unprecedented crisis simmers at the China-India border, the India-U.S. strategic partnership is poised to assume even greater significance in the years ahead.

Please join us as Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu reviews recent efforts to strengthen the India-U.S. partnership based on the shared values of democracy and the rule of law while looking ahead to new opportunities for India-U.S. collaboration in a changing global environment.

Over the last four years, the United States has taken great strides in the domain of space. The Department of Defense has been reorganized to add a new service and a new combatant command whose collective focus is the warfighting domain of space. NASA was given new strategic guidance for human exploration of space and funding to make it happen. This year alone, the commercial sector will more than double the number of launches made from US soil in a single year. On-demand, low cost space access is closer to reality than ever before.

Those gains should be celebrated, as they have put the United States on a trajectory to dominate all other nations in this critical domain. During the next four years America must use its current momentum to ensure the noble ends of security, exploration, and access are achieved for both the United States and the free world.

On October 6th, 2017, President Trump signed the Women Peace and Security Act, the first legislation of its kind in the world. To commemorate the third anniversary of the Act and to launch the American Council on Women, Peace, and Security, panelists will examine America’s unique contributions to the WPS agenda in an era of strategic competition. Join us as experts discuss how the United States will engage other nations with their own WPS frameworks, advance women’s liberty, dignity and opportunity as a matter of national security, and make the United States the partner of choice in the years ahead.


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Barrels of ink have been spilt on the importance of allies to U.S. security interests. But allies are only of value if they do their part to contribute to shared interests. There are troubling trends in the U.S. alliance structure, especially in NATO. Russia is hard at work sowing dissension among our European partners while it aggressively moves to influence events across Europe, the Middle East, and even North Africa. China is expanding its reach across Asia, rapidly modernizing its ability to project military power, methodically building an overland trade network, and has become a key economic partner for many countries in Europe. Meanwhile, the military power of the NATO alliance has shrunk, aged, and (especially in Europe) become less ready for use than when it stood as a bulwark against Soviet aggression.

Has the divergence of U.S. and European perceptions of the threats posed by Russia and China become so great that security and economic interests are at substantial risk? Is there a path forward that ensures Western, democratic, free-market countries can sustain their systems in the face of expansionist authoritarianism?

Judge Amy Coney Barrett is President Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court. Now that she has stepped onto the national stage, the American people have an opportunity to get to know Judge Barrett. What kind of boss, mentor, and judge is she? Join us as a panel with former clerks, former students, and a colleague from Notre Dame Law School describe their time working with and learning from her and explain why she will make an excellent Supreme Court justice.


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In February, the Trump administration launched its Central Asia Strategy to drive the United States’ engagement in the countries of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Central Asia has always been the strategic and commercial crossroad of civilizations between Europe and Asia. The United States’ primary strategic interest in this region is to build a more stable and prosperous Central Asia that is sovereign, secure and connected to global markets.

To implement this new vision, Acting Administrator John Barsa of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will announce a significant shift of USAID’s presence in Central Asia that will help deepen the United States’ commitment to, and strategic partnership with, the countries and in the region more broadly.

As the U.N. is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the U.N.’s Fourth World Conference on Women that took place in Beijing in 1995, conservatives must counter the prevailing liberal feminist perspective that reduces the diverse needs of women and girls to abortion rights under the guise of so-called “sexual and reproductive health.” Instead, to improve women and girls’ lives we must promote solutions that meet women’s real needs and desires, such as education, medicine and health care, economic empowerment, access to justice, and safety for their children and families. While many elites equate women’s empowerment with abortion rights, millions of women around the world reject this false and one-dimensional view of women’s needs.


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