We Didn’t Choose This Battle: Religious Freedom in 2014

Dispatches3Most Americans were never properly taught what the Declaration of Independence or the U.S. Constitution and the Amendments actually say. This isn’t surprising when you realize most kids attend the public schools.

This ignorance is exacerbated when lawyers aren’t even taught the Constitution in law school — they’re taught case law (the opinions of Supreme Court Justices). The same goes for most people who have studied political science while in undergrad — and I know at both levels since I had a full year of “Constitutional Law” in undergrad and a full year in law school.

The solution is remedial education — continuing education. I’ve had to do it, and if you want to learn what you were never taught you need to as well. I’ve enjoyed the process, actually, and you might too. The Founders were great men who understood history and human nature.

One of the biggest deficits of understanding we have in America today is the current situation when it comes to the battle between our “First Freedom,” religious liberty, and the so-called sexual rights agenda. For some reason the political left can’t grasp or doesn’t want to admit that sex is just behavior. That’s all it is. It’s not the equivalent of race or ethnicity. And even the most elementary understanding of religious liberty grasps the fact that we have the God-given right to make a judgment about the behavior of others.

That what our nation’s Founders believed, and that’s why religious liberty, rightly understood, was written into both our U.S. Constitution and our state constitution here in Illinois.

There’s much more that can be said about this, and much of it has been in the links found here and here.

The following is an excerpt from a post by John Stonestreet at BreakPoint:

Breakpoint pngThe future of religious freedom in the United States may well be defined during 2014.

On the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, the Supreme Court agreed to hear Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby, the challenge to the HHS mandate brought by a Christian-owned family business based in Oklahoma.

It’s also agreed to hear a related case, Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Sebelius, which involves the issue of whether a business, as well as its owners, has a right to religious freedom under the First Amendment.

While most commentators have treated the news as part of the larger story about the legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act, the far more important story is the battle for religious freedom.

Two thousand and fourteen is shaping up to be a momentous, perhaps even defining, year when it comes to religious freedom in the United States. What’s at stake in these cases goes far beyond healthcare—it’s about what we mean when we say “freedom of religion.”

The trend over the past decade has been to equate “freedom of religion” with “freedom of worship,” that people are free to believe—or not believe—whatever they want. And with a few exceptions, they may also practice with other like-minded people whatever rituals they think their belief requires of them, provided these rituals remain private.

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