First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me. —Martin Niemoller
Martin Niemoller was a protestant pastor during Nazi Germany—one who spent the last seven years of Hitler's rule in concentration camps. As the leader of the confessing church, Niemoller was one of the earliest Germans to speak out against the complicity of the people during the Holocaust. We thank God for honest, courageous leaders like this throughout history.
In America, if ever there were a time for bold, courageous leaders like Niemoller, now is the time.
May it never be said of us we didn't speak out when tyranny reared its ugly head in our generation.
Last week, the Washington Supreme Court ruled 9-0 against the religious liberties of 72-year-old florist Barronelle Stutzman. The words of our friend, Dr. Michael Brown, summarize the outrageous decision best:
These justices ruled unanimously against florist Barronelle Stutzman, claiming that she discriminated against a longtime gay customer (named Robert Ingersoll) when she told him she couldn't make the floral arrangement for his upcoming gay "wedding," despite the fact that she had served him for years and despite her recommending three other florists who could do the arrangements for his wedding.
Instead, the court ruled that this 72-year-old grandmother who had employed gay workers and served gay customers for years, was required by law to participate in a gay wedding, even though this constituted a direct violation of her religious beliefs—beliefs which have been consistent and almost universally held among Christians for the last 2,000 years.
Not only so, but the court upheld the attack on her personal assets as well—her house, her savings, her retirement funds—by requiring her "to pay the attorneys' fees that the ACLU racked up in suing her," fees which could reach as high as one million dollars.
This is tyranny, flat-out. And for those who say, "She discriminated!" we ask, "How so?"
Was it because she refused to employ gay people? No.
Was it because she refused service to a gay man? No.
Was it because she refused service to a gay couple? No.
She simply refused to participate in a "wedding" —an event and a celebration that was against her conscience. She was clearly within her God-given, constitutional rights.
Now she's a "hater" as the highest court in Washington held that her floral arrangements do not constitute free speech. Yet fashion designers, who say their dresses represent their constitutional freedom of speech, are "heroes" for not making the first lady a dress.
Do you see the hypocrisy here? And when hypocrisy like this entrenches itself in a court of law, it becomes tyranny.
If we're going to have good law, it must be based on an objective standard for people's safety, not a subjective standard for people's comfort. We've got it all backward—and now is the time to stand up and speak.
So here's some clarity on religious liberty that will equip you to be a voice against this radical revolution that's transforming America:
Religious freedom has nothing to do with not servicing people or groups of people. It has everything to do with not being forced by government to participate in activities, messages or events that individuals deem morally wrong.
A Muslim baker should not be forced to bake a gay "wedding" cake.
A Jewish sandwich shop should not be forced to serve pork.
A family-owned print shop should not be forced to print flyers for strip clubs.
A gay-owned catering company should not be forced to service a Westboro Baptist anti-gay rally.
But those pushing this revolution don't want you to understand these crucial facts, which is why they cloud all clarity by saying religious freedom is a "license to discriminate" against people or individual communities of people. In fact, Americans have every right to discern (use their discrimination) as to which events or messages they will or won't service. The government has no right to force participation against our will.
And that's the beauty of religious liberty. It is a shield against government, not a sword against groups of people. So don't believe the propaganda.
If we don't speak up now, there may not be anyone left to speak up for us when the government steps into the comfort of our own world.
Tyranny is on the rise, folks. Let's push back.
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