Guest Writer: Tony Perkins and our Partners at FRC
Well, what do you know! Liberals finally support the freedom of conscience — for other liberals. That’s right. The party that wants to jail, fine, punish, and bankrupt Christians with deeply-held beliefs suddenly wants the same right to bow out of events they disagree with (but without the messy lawsuits they’re subjecting conservatives to). The country is getting a front-row seat to the Left’s hypocrisy thanks to the election of Donald Trump. From the First Lady’s dressmakers to Ivanka Trump’s art collection, we’ve witnessed liberals dump their “tolerance-is-the-price-of-citizenship” ideology faster than you can say Inauguration 2017.
The Left’s double standard was on full display over Christmas when the boss of the Radio City Rockettes, James Dolan, lamented the fact that part of his troop may be dancing at Trump’s swearing in.
“Finding out that it has been decided for us that Rockettes will be performing at the presidential inauguration makes me feel embarrassed and disappointed. The women I work with are intelligent and are full of love, and the decision of performing for a man [who] stands for everything we’re against is appalling. I am speaking for just myself but please know that after we found out the news, we have been performing with tears in our eyes and heavy hearts. We will not be forced! #notmypresident”
Of course, no one is forcing the Rockettes to perform — and those who choose not to dance have been accommodated. Unfortunately, that luxury was never granted to Christians like Aaron and Melissa Klein, Barronelle Stutzman, Elaine Hugenon, Betty and Richard Odgaard, and scores more. As upset as Dolan was, imagine if his dancers’ houses, businesses, reputations, and life savings were on the line. That’s the reality facing Christians who want the same right to decline jobs that violate their faith. Now that the shoe is on the (Rockettes’) other foot, liberals seem to have discovered the freedom of association, The Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro muses.
“After years of telling religious people that they had a moral and legal obligation to throw out their religion and serve same-sex weddings, provide contraception, and fund abortion, the Left now realizes that the ability to pick and choose those to whom you give your services is actually rather vital.”
It’s just too bad that they don’t extend that same courtesy to people with other beliefs. For years, tolerance has been a one-way street that only liberals can drive on. And that isn’t likely to change, despite this (far less painful) encounter with conservatives’ struggle to live and work according to their beliefs. It’s time for the Left to recognize: No one should be forced to participate in something they morally oppose, especially not a nonessential function that someone else can provide. To suggest that people should surrender their views as a condition of public service is as un-American as it gets.
Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.