Friday, September 12, 2014

Deep confusion over the meaning of "religious freedom"

You may remember that now that OK has erected a copy of the ten commandments on government grounds, a Satanist group has now demanded equal rights to put up their own statue.  Using the Freedom of Information Act, they requested correspondence regarding their request and discovered that the people of Oklahoma are deeply, deeply confused about the concept of religious freedom.

Yes, people have a choice as to what they want to believe and yet we need to make that “choosing” as easy as possible to choose Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
Therefore, concerning the rights of different religions, I don’t see where the CIVIL LAW OF EOUALITYAPPLIES. It is repulsive to me to even have to consider another religion as being equal to Christianity.
Painfully absent from these sort of arguments was a recognition or understanding of the establishment clause. In their view, religious freedom is like pie and giving a slice of freedom to Satanists means taking a slice away from Christians. Accordingly, many callers invoked a tyranny of the majority, arguing that religious minorities can be ignored because Oklahoma is “The Bible Belt.” One letter suggested that the monument to Satan be allowed but that its scale must be in proportion to the percentage of Satanists living in Oklahoma. 
....Because the authors of the messages fail to understand the difference between government endorsement of Christianity and the personal liberty of Christian citizens, Constitutional issues surrounding the separation of church and state are interpreted as demonic attacks perpetrated by “God haters.” 
Constitutional ignorance has fueled our culture wars and perpetuated a narrative that Christianity in America is under attack. September 17 is Constitution Day, the perfect opportunity to recognize that the First Amendment has two clauses about religion; we’re not only a nation that values religious freedom, we are also a nation that recognizes the government shouldn’t tell us what to believe.
Yeah good luck with that.

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