A recent letter from the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention to the Senate Majority Leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Speaker of the House, John Boehner, implores the Congress to pass the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA) immediately. With the imposition of same-sex ‘marriage’ by the US Supreme Court, religious freedom has come under fire. The letter succinctly characterizes the need for this act:
The First Amendment Defense Act will help to ensure the protection of the core American value of religious freedom. The bill bars the federal government from taking “any discriminatory action against a person, wholly or partially on the basis that such person believes or as in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union between one man and one woman, or that sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.” Such adverse action includes federal government discrimination in such areas as programs, grants, contracts, and tax treatment against individuals and organizations that believe on religious grounds that marriage is between a man and a woman. The bill also provides crucial protection for our nation’s faith-based institutions.
Governmental discrimination on the basis of religious belief and practice about marriage will have devastating effect on people of faith, their institutions, and the communities they serve. Millions of law-abiding, faithful people are likely to be suddenly deemed bigots and social outcasts. Their institutions will be crippled and many may cease to exist. Most distressing, millions of people will lose the safety net and affirming services they depend on each and every day, from daycare to meals to job training to adoption.
Failure to pass FADA will result in the alienation of millions of Americans, and will render the United States fundamentally unjust. Urge your congressmen to support FADA and to support religious freedom.