You may have heard about a bill that passed recently in Indiana. It’s called The Religious Freedom Restoration Act. It enumerates that a person’s religious freedom shall not be “substantially burdened.” The immediate problem is that what constitutes substantial burden is never defined.
But there’s another, broader problem with this law, and it’s all in the name. “Religious Freedom Restoration Act.” As if somehow Christians weren’t free to practice their religion before. This branding, this idea, fits perfectly with a common thread throughout the Christian narrative: victimhood.
You hear it all the time. “The war on Christmas.” Evolution being taught in school. Mean atheist bullies like Richard Dawkins. Wouldn’t you know it, Christianity is always under attack! Poor Christians.
But is this representation really true? No. Just look at the facts. 78% of Americans identify as Christian. Moreover, 73% of Americans believe that God created the world in 6 days or that he directly guided human evolution. These aren’t small numbers or a simple majority. This is an overwhelming part of the population. And Christianity is firmly entrenched in the political system. In fact, 92% of congress is Christian.
So obviously, Christianity isn’t going anywhere, and Christian freedom is hardly in danger of being diminished, given that the whole system is populated by Christians. You can’t turn around anywhere in this country without seeing the Christian influence. So what’s really going on here?
It’s all marketing. That’s it. It’s an image, an idea crafted specifically for mass consumption. The overall goal here is to provide justification for forcing Christian beliefs onto everyone in this country. Because ultimately, it isn’t about giving people more freedom, it’s about taking it away and replacing it with the Christian agenda.
And that’s what this bill in Indiana is really symptomatic of. This bill would justify the denial of goods and services to people who didn’t agree with Christians. That’s not freedom, that’s called discrimination.
There’s a very long list of similar attempts to legislate Christianity in this country, with a lot of recent attempts and victories. There’s the Hobby Lobby ruling. There’s the fact that atheists are outright barred from holding public office in 7 states. There are numerous laws against abortion and proposed constituinal amendments banning same sex marriage. There’s even a lawmaker in Arizona who proposed that church services should be mandatory for all citizens.
None of these laws are about freedom. These laws are all about control. They deny people rights while forcing them to adopt or adhere to Christian values. The only freedom that these laws grant is the freedom for Christians to openly discriminate against and persecute those who don’t agree with them.