And No Religion, Too
March 16, 2009
By Phil Perkins
It's been almost 38 years since John Lennon's anthem of a socialist utopia, "Imagine," hit the pop charts. The lyrics inferred that we could have a "brotherhood of man" if only there was a litany of things including "no religion too." Now, according to a recent article, more Americans than ever say that they have no religion at all. Trouble is, everyone at the end of the day has to believe in something. And that something, as God recedes in the American psyche, all too often is socialism.
I don't think that it's a coincidence that the state of Vermont, which boasts the only declared Socialist in the U.S. Congress, has far and away the highest percentage (34) of people claiming to have no religion. It's also no coincidence that northern New England and the Pacific Northwest, the two most politically liberal enclaves (besides perhaps Illinois) in the country, are the least "religious" regions in the country according to the study referenced in the article. However, the article misses the point that there are many religions besides those which are based on worship of a monotheistic God acknowledged as the Creator of the universe. Environmental extremists worship at the altar of "man-made climate change," and their entire advocacy and energy is expended in favor of this movement. That's just one example of many.
Against this backdrop, it's little wonder that the new president can dismantle with alarming speed the measures of the previous administration that at least prevented the worst of anti-Christian activities to occur. The rescission of the Bush executive order prohibiting federal tax dollars for abortions overseas occurred with barely a flutter, except from the conservative corner. Same for the recent decision to proceed full steam ahead with federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.
As the web of anti-Christian culture wraps itself around us in an increasing stranglehold, we may be left feeling helpless about what we as individuals can do to stem the tide. Enter the Alliance Defense Fund, described on its web site as "a legal alliance of Christian attorneys and like-minded organizations defending the right of people to freely live out their faith." The ADF is doing amazing things to stem or even reverse the tide of extreme liberalism's pervasive and often perverse effects on the lives of morally upright people.
Every day, ugly things are happening to innocent people who are simply trying to be good citizens. These are the incidents you don't get to see on the evening news because the drive-by media are too busy propping up the new president and the elitist and victim classes who are his most ardent supporters, not to mention that they want such embarrassing-to-liberals incidents swept under the rug. Yet if it weren't for the ADF, these innocent people would be losing jobs, going to prison for bogus "offenses," and maybe worse. Just a couple of examples show the power of this organization to reverse biased, anti-Christian rulings and restore a sense of justice and fair play to out-of-control situations.
In Findlay, Ohio last year, a police chief showed up with two of his officers, ordering a church group with pro-life message signs alongside a busy intersection to disperse or come with them to jail. It was illegal, he said, to hold up signs like that without a city permit. The pastor and his group obediently dispersed, but it turns out that there was no such ordinance on the city's books. The ADF sued the city on behalf of the pastor and his fellow pro-life advocates, and ultimately, a federal court ruled that Findlay officials violated the group's First Amendment right to free speech. In the aftermath, ADF Legal Counsel Matt Bowman stated, "Christians shouldn't be penalized for expressing their beliefs. Exercising your First Amendment rights is not a crime. The government has no right to harass and threaten citizens for exercising their First Amendment rights in public." Amen to that.
In another recent case, the city of Atlanta reversed course, agreeing to a consent order from a federal judge that allowed Kingdom First Ministries to begin meeting in its rented building. The city made its decision after ADF attorneys and allied attorneys filed suit against the city for illegitimately denying the church use of the building, which was originally zoned for churches but then supposedly rezoned to prohibit church occupancy. "Atlanta had illegally zoned the Kingdom First property to exclude churches," said ADF-allied attorney John Mauck. "Once the situation was brought to the attention of the city's attorneys, however, they did not dig in their heels to bully the church. Instead, they promptly agreed to the court order, and we commend them."
Recently I received a mailing from the new Republican National Committee chairman, Michael Steele, exhorting me to open my wallet for his new and improved party and assuring me that he's taking the party back to its roots. If so, his insulting remarks about Rush Limbaugh and his pretzel-like attempt to please the pro-choice crowd while remaining pro-life provide little assurance that he knows the road back to those roots. I think my money's going to the Alliance Defense Fund instead.