Apparently the Trump administration is so utterly in the pocket of the Religious Reich that they feel as though they can implement policies which are so blatantly bigoted that they beggar belief. That to me is how I feel about the Religious Liberty Task Force which was unveiled this past Monday, 30 July, 2018, by Jeff Sessions. Their intention is apparently to assist in justifying discrimination by Christians, which they see as being motivated by their faith. Not only does this fly in the face of the First Amendment, but it also threatens to empower and enable a tyranny of the majority, solely on the basis of belief.
Having seen this travesty aborning, the following has gone to the offices of my Congresspeople, both via their websites and though the US Postal Service:
I note with a profound sense of disquiet the Department of Justice’s announcement of a “religious liberty task force,” designed, according to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, to counter a “dangerous movement” to erode Christians’ right to practice their faith as they see fit. As an atheist who has no problem in granting their right to worship, I DO have a problem when their practices transgress onto other people’s rights. Does this give license to those who would cite Leviticus 20:13 to harass gay men and Lesbian women because they’re in violation of some deity’s misguided law? Would it allow a Christian man who takes 1 Timothy 2:11 to heart to disregard a woman because, in the words of Paul, “I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man?” Would it, in short, allow Christians to discriminate against those whom they feel are in violation of their god’s law, without recourse to those being discriminated against? Mr. Sessions may wish to allege that I am wrong and this “task force” is there to serve all religions. Having seen how this administration genuflects toward fundamentalist Christianity, I am not persuaded.
A saying I heard a long time ago says, “Your right to wave your beliefs about ends at my nose.” Christians may exercise their faith, granted, but when that exercise steps on someone else’s toes, especially when that someone is a minority under duress or a woman who continues to face “glass ceilings” without let, a very serious line has been crossed. Allow me to remind you that the Bible does NOT govern this country, and while we may be a nation of mostly Christians, “the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.” That, as you may know, is from the Treaty of Tripoli, which is a part of US law and something I take very seriously. Even more basically, whatever happened to: “Congress shall make no law regarding an establishment of religion?”
In short, I see this task force as being an engine of discrimination to be used by those who have enjoyed Christian privilege in this country practically since its inception and wish to more deeply formalize their right to act against those who may live differently from them. I see this not just as unjust, intolerable and unconstitutional, but un-American. I urge you to take action to see to it that the religious liberty task force is stopped before it has a chance to start.
People, we can't let this stand. Contact your Senate and House representatives and let them know that the thumb which Trump & Co. wish to place on the scales of justice in this country is intolerable. Make it clear to them that they have made a mistake and a bad one, and that We Won't Have It.