For anyone who thinks religious discrimination is non-existent in America, the attorneys at First Liberty Institute have a different story.
First Liberty announced on Monday the release of Undeniable: The Survey of Hostility to Religion in America (2016). It is available online here, free of charge.
This 2016 edition of the annual survey documents 1,285 cited attacks on religion in America—more than double the 600 attacks documented in the first edition, released in 2012.
“The religious liberty of Americans is under attack like never before,” says Kelly Shackelford, President and CEO of First Liberty Institute. “The time to take a stand for our First Freedom is now.”
COMPILING THE EVIDENCE: THE GROWING HOSTILITY
Justin Butterfield, First Liberty Senior Counsel and Harvard Law School graduate serves as Editor-in-Chief of Undeniable.
“Undeniable came about because many simply refused to believe that religious hostility was occurring right here in America,” Butterfield said. “Unfortunately, the hostility to religion in America is real. With each new edition every year, we are providing the evidence that that hostility is growing rapidly.”
Among the attacks listed in Undeniable are First Liberty’s own cases, including:
“The first step to recovery from any problem is to stop denying a problem exists,” Roger Severino, Director of the DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation told the Conservative Review. “First Liberty Institute’s report shatters the myth that the left is on the side of tolerance by documenting countless examples of progressives using the power of government to target people of faith for hostility and exclusion because of their beliefs.”
TAKING THE NEXT STEP: AMERICA’S HOPE FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
For each attack listed in Undeniable, the editors have also indicated the current status or outcome for each case. And as the Executive Summary states,
[T]his survey shows that those persons and organizations who stand up for religious liberty win when they fight. As more and more Americans become aware of the growing attacks on religious liberty and what their rights are, they can stand and turn back the tides of secularism and hostility that have so eroded our religious liberty rights, our First Freedom.
There is hope for restoring religious freedom for all Americans—and it begins by acknowledging the hostility that exists. To find out more about how you can become involved in the ongoing battle for religious freedom in America, click on one of the following links:
Dear Coach Kennedy,
I would like to say thank you. Your dedication to your faith and your commitment to the positive education of our youth is truly admirable. I am deeply grateful for your military service and for taking a courageous stance in protecting religious liberty rights for teachers and administrators.
If our First Amendment protects a player’s right to kneel in protest, it certainly protects your right to kneel in prayer.
I was shocked to learn that Bremerton High School suspended you after denying your request to continue your wholesome practice of giving thanks after football games.
The Bremerton School District’s actions violate the law and send the wrong message to coaches, young people, our communities, and our nation — a message of hostility to religious freedom and intolerance toward personal religious expression.
Please know that you are not alone in this difficult time — I support you and First Liberty as you continue to fight for religious freedom! Our schools need more coaches like you, our country needs more citizens like you, and our world needs more people like you.✖