This is not a First Amendment issue. At. All.
Whenever I hear stories like this about how politics is tearing congregations apart, I'm reminded that most of the folks in the founding generation who advocated for separation of church and state did so because they cared about the future of the church. https://t.co/tkIeS2E71T— Seth Cotlar (@SethCotlar) September 25, 2022
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
I mean, I agree, wholeheartedly, that the First Amendment has preserved the church (or "religion," if you prefer; actually a more appropriate term here) in America. And yeah, this is "ironic":
But let's identify the number of pastors who were silent, silenced, or forced out of their churches in the Civil Rights era. The days of Dr. King and protest marches and Freedom Riders and the KKK burning churches and killing people. As I've said before ("We know, Grandpa!"), King's famous letter was written to Christian and Jewish leaders who wouldn't speak out for civil rights and freedom in 1964. I was a pretty steady church attendee in East Texas at the "liberal" (i.e., non-Southern Baptist) churches, and I never heard anyone preach about Dr. King or voting rights. That was a sure ticket to losing your pastorate, and was it a hill you wanted to die on?
This is ironic, of course, because the right wing "originalist" Christian Nationalists today who are falsely saying the founders never intended to separate church and state are enacting exactly what that founding generation feared.— Seth Cotlar (@SethCotlar) September 25, 2022