America is at its best when everyone has the right to believe freely and make personal choices in accordance with those beliefs, so long as no one else is harmed in the process. People of all faiths and none deserve equal protection under the law and ought not be discriminated against by the government or by fellow citizens.
Unfortunately, that principle has been put in jeopardy by the Supreme Court. In a string of alarming rulings, such as 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis, Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and others, the court has emboldened those who would use religious freedom not as a shield that protects but a sword that lashes out.
Religious authority, not freedom
Despite these rulings, Christian Nationalists and other religious extremists continue to push for more. They advocate for religious freedom being used as a device to buttress discrimination and prop up their own sense of privilege. They will not stop until this nation is a Christian Nationalist hellscape. As New York Times columnist David French noted recently, what they seek is not religious freedom; it is religious authority.
No longer is the right to pray, believe and otherwise exercise one’s faith as one pleases enough for Christian Nationalists – only the unadulterated power to crush others under the yoke of their narrow beliefs will satiate their desire for a white, hetero-Christian society where they hold the reins. Christian Nationalists want the ability to control social discourse, schools, the media, your body, politics and any other facet of life over which they can lord their power.
Paternalism, entitlement and control
Christian Nationalism relies on paternalism and a sense of entitlement. Not only do Christian Nationalists believe that they have the most, nay, only moral beliefs, but they think they deserve the right to force those beliefs upon you and your family. It is not about religious freedom for non-Christians, whether they be Muslims, atheists, or Jains. It is about control for Christian Nationalists.
With the help of political demagogues, Christian Nationalists have seen gains in politics. But the American people are tired of having their fundamental rights trampled. Join Americans United as we fight to ensure that this nation remains a haven for religious freedom for all. Because at the core of our nation is this simple but profound idea: Freedom without favor, equality without exception.