Proponents of Project Blitz have attacked lawmakers who oppose their Christian nationalist legislation as being “anti-religious.” Lawmakers who follow a religious tradition should feel comfortable speaking about why it is important to oppose this kind of legislation in order to protect their own freedom of religion along with that of other Americans.
Messaging and Talking Points
As a person of faith, I oppose this legislation because I believe in the importance of religious liberty for all. No one should feel discriminated against because of how they choose to worship or whether or not they choose to do so.
[On National Motto Display Laws] I trust in God. I do not want my government, however, to start proclaiming that statement, or any other religious statement, on my behalf. Posting In God We Trust on public schools violates the freedom of religion. Government has no place in telling the American people what we should or should not believe. Our public education system must foster an environment that welcomes students of all faiths and none.
[On Bible literacy classes] As a person of faith, I understand the importance of learning and understanding sacred scripture. This activity takes place every day in homes and houses of worship across the country. It does not, however, belong in our public schools. Government has no place in telling our children what they should or should not believe.
Many educators across the country already teach responsibly about the world’s different religious traditions as part of classes on literature, history, and anthropology. Children should have the opportunity to learn about people of all faiths and none from all over the world.
This is very different from what the Christian nationalists pushing this legislation seek to do. They are trying to advance a particular set of Christian beliefs using taxpayer dollars.
[On RFRA] As a person of faith, I appreciate the original intent of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) to clarify and expand upon everyone’s right to religious liberty. Unfortunately, Christian nationalists are exploiting this law by re-interpreting it to give themselves the right to discriminate. For example, some hospitals have argued their religious affiliations give them the right to deny access to health care to people who identify as LGBTQ.
As a person of faith, I am personally grateful that the United States grants the constitutional right of freedom of religion. Project Blitz is a stealth campaign that threatens to undermine that right. Although the individuals behind it claim to celebrate religious freedom, in fact they undermine it by supporting only the religious views of their select group.
Specifically for Christian lawmakers: As a Christian, I believe that Christian nationalism is harmful, because it suggests that being Christian and being American go hand in hand. To me, this is sinful. As prominent Christian leaders have said: “Christian nationalism also confuses our allegiances, a danger that Jesus warned about when he taught us to render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.”
Not only does Christian nationalism distort my faith values, but also it impinges on America’s constitutional democracy.
I do not want my faith to be exploited in order to take away freedom of religion for anyone—Christians, people of other faiths, and people of no faith.
The United States is unique among many countries in the way that it embraces the diversity of beliefs and expressions, both religious and secular. Project Blitz threatens this value by privileging Christian nationalist views over all others.