Culture Beat / October 27, 2016

Georgia’s Anti-Christian Crusade

A Christian pastor is fighting wrongful termination.

Give us your sermons. The state of Georgia is requiring that Dr. Eric Walsh, a pastor who is suing the state for wrongful termination, turn over all his past sermons. This chilling story has been developing since 2014, when Dr. Walsh was suddenly terminated from his job as district director with Georgia’s Department of Public Health mere days after being hired. Walsh contends he was fired due to his religious beliefs, and he has a good argument to support this claim.

Approximately a week after Walsh was hired, the health agency requested copies of his sermons — a request with which he complied. After reviewing these sermons, the agency fired him, so it’s no wonder he objects to submitting them to the state. The state of Georgia contends that Walsh was fired for failure to disclose “outside employment.” This is a questionable argument, given that Walsh, during his interview for the job, did indeed disclose the fact that he preached for a local congregation. If the dispute over his firing had nothing to do with his religious beliefs, then why would the state request he turn over all his sermons, sermon notes and anything he has written on his religious beliefs, including any content written on social media sites?

This anti-religion (specifically anti-Christian) crusade perpetrated by many on the Left is fundamentally a misapplication of the separation of church and state. The state’s concern should not be protecting the public from religion, but protecting the right of the public to freely and openly engage in religion. The idea that one’s religious beliefs should be kept private and not be allowed to have an impact on one’s work and opinions is simply absurd. Everyone has a worldview that informs and motivates their decisions and actions. To act like this is not the case is to deny reality.

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