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Religious Freedom! Do We Really Have It?

By David J. Smith
June 14, 2014

I wonder if you believe the threat to religious liberty is real. We get up, go to church, sing, pray, listen to a sermon and sermonette and return to our cars and homes unmolested and unharmed. Some meet in restaurants or community centers for Bible studies. Some kids attend Christian schools and camps. We can buy a Bible in any bookstore.

You probably feel free. But have you noticed a subtle change – a chilling new strategy by the left [Communists] to deny our freedoms. It used to be that the LEFT [Communists] would “merely” smear Christians for expressing their faith in places secularists deemed off limits. Now, the left [Communists] are attempting to shut down or punish Christian expression altogether. Therefore, are we Really free?

I think if you asked Frank Turek if he feels he has full and unfettered freedom to openly live according to his Christian beliefs, he’d say, “Absolutely not.”

As you read about these stories, I hope you will understand the serious threat to our Freedom of Religion.

Have you ever heard about little canaries coalminers used to carry as an early warning of the presence of invisible but deadly methane gas? If the canary keeled over, the miner knew he had to get out of there fast or he was dead!

The point is, things are happening all around us that should be a wake-up call. That brings me back to Dr. Frank Turek. What happened to him is a first-class warning to you and me if we are ever tempted to believe that our First Amendment right to free speech and religious liberty couldn’t be taken away. IT COULD HAPPEN. Here’s why!

Frank is a retired Navy officer and a committed Christian. Two of his sons serve in the U.S. Air Force. Frank is a patriotic American, an accomplished academic, and an author. He is a good man unjustly harmed.

In 2008, a technology giant hired him as a contractor to design and conduct leadership and teambuilding programs for some of it business units.

Just a few months ago, in June 2011, Frank was wrapping up yet another successful and highly acclaimed training session for the company’s managers when one of the attendees phoned in a complaint to the human resources department. It wasn’t that the training was bad. In fact, the managers thought Frank’s training was excellent.

It’s that one manager had Googled Dr. Turek and discovered he’d written a book defending traditional marriage against those who promote gay marriage.

Not once had Frank expressed in class his personal faith convictions about homosexuality. He never mentioned that he’d written a book against same-sex marriage. He never mentioned he was a Christian. He was just doing his job: professionally conducting a corporate training class per the terms of his contract.

But that didn’t matter because according to the company’s website:

We strive to create an INCLUSIVE, balanced, and collaborative environment that enables employees to develop and utilize their talents, give back to their communities, and advance their careers.”

Make note of the little word “inclusive” above. Although he hadn’t even read the book, but had only seen it online, this manager was upset. How dare a conservative Christian who doesn’t embrace “GAY RIGHTS be allowed to conduct a training course for the company’s employees? We can’t have that! That’s not inclusive!!!

So the complaining GAY MANAGER actually had the company’s human resource office terminate Frank’s contract that very day for having views inconsistent with the company’s “values.”

The pledge to be “inclusive” wasn’t really true! Only those with the “correct” views were to be included – not Christians. They were to get out and shut up.

Religious freedom? Not for Frank. And not for others targeted by atheists, homosexual activists, and others for daring to hold or publicly act on their deeply held Christian beliefs.

Meet a few others taken straight from the cases of Liberty Institute.

  • Medina Valley (Texas) High School graduating senior Angela Hildenbrand was told by a federal judge that she risked incarceration if she prayed or said a word about her Christian faith in her valedictory speech June 4, 2011.
  • Pastor Scott Rainey was told by an official of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to submit his prayer in writing for approval.

Sorry America! You are under siege!!!

Originally Published: 12/10/11

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