America is at a cross-roads in a lot of areas. 2016 has been called a “pivotal year” in terms of the elections, and that is certainly true. But one thing that is missing from all the political talk that is blanketing the nation is freedom of religion.
Over the last year, there have been a number of news stories that relate to the First Amendment right to freely practice religion in the United States. But these have all faded quietly into the background as the nation has shifted its collective political attention to matters of who will be elected President in November.
But these same issues of religious freedom will still be there in January when some new face takes the Oath of Office. The question is: How will the next President address religious freedom in the United States? Regardless of who is elected, freedom of religion must play a key role in that Administration.
The people of America will choose the next President and Congress in November. The issues that have proven so divisive over the last eight years will not go away, and, if anything, will be more important. From the rights of Catholic nuns to not provide contraceptives as a part of their employer-sponsored health insurance, to the right of a business to refuse service based on their religious beliefs, the United States regularly sees religious freedom called into question.
Wherever the government – at all levels –goes in 2017, the religious citizens of the nation that was founded on religious freedom need to stand together against the persecution of people who hold dear to those religious beliefs that define them. Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Jews, and anyone else of some religious conviction need to stand together and demand that the First Amendment right to freely practice religion without government intervention not be trampled upon.