How can you separate freedom of conscience from freedom of religion?

Mar 2, 2018 by

by David van Gend, MercatorNet:

This Review has been triggered by concern over threats to religious freedom from the redefinition of marriage. I doubt it is possible to enjoy authentic religious freedom under a regime of “marriage equality”.

A law for homosexual “marriage” will intimidate religious leaders (and their insurers) with the relentless threat of anti-discrimination lawsuits; individuals who speak out against LGBT dogma will be harassed by the “Human Rights” censors; marriage doctrine and moral teaching will become something to be whispered in private.

There can be no peaceful coexistence between state-enforced homosexual orthodoxy and Christian moral orthodoxy. It will require a robust Conscientious and Religious Freedom Act to protect people of faith in an increasingly hostile culture, but I doubt there is the political will.

Freedom of “thought, conscience and religion” should not be divided

The Review fails to link conscientious freedom with religious freedom.

These two freedoms describe the exercise of the same moral faculty and should not be artificially divided. Any such division might create an “us and them” attitude where a Review like this is perceived as only for religious types and of no interest to the rest of us.

In fact, religious freedom is a subset of conscientious freedom, and conscientious freedom is crucial for all of us, whether our deepest convictions lead us to a religious worldview or not. I will link “conscientious and religious freedom” in this submission and I hope the Review will consider doing so.

The essence of our humanity is our reason and conscience, the faculties by which we strive to distinguish right from wrong, truth from error.

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