The Real Challenge to Religious Liberty in America

The things Christians decide are important enough to raise a stink over on religious liberty ground always astound me. Like the way we keep fighting for the right to say prayers at government meetings and such. As if such prayers have ANY meaning at all or losing them would be detrimental to Christianity. It’s a laughable proposition. Especially when the meetings that follow these prayers may wind up with a seriously anti-Christian law like this:

Daytona Beach is one of a handful of cities that enacted ordinances barring individuals from serving food in public. . . Daytona Beach is just the latest city to crack down on groups that feed the poor in city parks. Other recent examples range from Birmingham to St. Louis to Raleigh to Philadelphiato Orlando

That comes from a story about a couple who was forced to stop feeding homeless people in a park each week and given thousands of dollars in fines for daring to do so. And their story isn’t particularly unique. These cases pop up regularly if you pay attention to such things. (Here’s another example out of Raleigh NC from last fall.) Some towns have gone so far in their wars on the poor that they have made covering yourself with blankets or newspapers illegal, washing your face in a public washroom illegal and sitting in one place too long illegal.

Now, how is it that we will fight for things we believe in, but which are never directly ordered by Jesus like praying before football games and town hall meetings or not helping women get birth control or whatever other thing we’ve decided is “an essential part of the Christian faith”. Meanwhile, we pass laws forbidding something Jesus specifically said to do, like feeding hungry people, and there’s nary a peep?

I would love to see Christians challenging these draconian ordinances on religious liberty grounds. I would love to see Christian police officers refusing to engage in enforcement actions which violate their religious liberties. I would love to see Christian citizens engaged in mass civil disobedience in protest of these laws.

Unfortunately, we seem far more invested in whether a multi-billionaire CEO has to indirectly fund his employees birth control than with feeding the poor like Jesus told us to. Is it any wonder the world is none to impressed with Christians these days?

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4 thoughts on “The Real Challenge to Religious Liberty in America

  1. I find this to be so untrue, I have served dinners to the needy, made visit to those in need, sat with the dying and their families, worked as a volunteer in a free medical clinic.. All of these have been under the name of Christianity. I know that here, where I am currently living there is a free medical clinic run by the local doctors, who happen to be Muslim. I think if you check your facts you will see that religion
    has played a very important part in charity works throughout history. And by that I mean all religions. I understand that charity is not exclusive to people of faith, but, many organizations that serve the disenfranchised are faith based.

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    • I’m not sure you got what I was trying to say. My point was pretty much that Christians (and others) are being stopped by local governments from helping people. I think this is an issue of religious liberty which is far more pressing than whether we can say prayers over the loud speakers at football games.

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