Secular Coalition Touts Church State Separation, Praises Obama on Religious Freedom Day
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today the Secular Coalition for America celebrated Religious Freedom Day. The Coalition also praised President Obama for mentioning non-believers in the proclamation issued by the White House, marking the annual day.
The purpose of the day is to promote and protect freedom of religion-and no religion-for all Americans.
The National Religious Freedom Day falls on the anniversary of the passage of Thomas Jefferson's Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom in 1786. Jefferson's document later became the basis for the Establishment Clause, and led to the protection of freedom of religion as provided in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Secular Coalition for America Executive Director, Edwina Rogers, says recently there has been a major effort to assert a false definition of religious freedom.
"We must remember that true religious freedom entitles us to our personal religious beliefs, but does not allow us to impose those beliefs on others," Rogers said. "On this day we should remember the importance of the separation of religion and government, which is the best protection of religious freedom for all Americans."
The Secular Coalition also praised President Obama for mentioning nontheists in his proclamation issued by the White House today.
The proclamation read in part, "Because of the protections guaranteed by our Constitution, each of us has the right to practice our faith openly and as we choose. As a free country, our story has been shaped by every language and enriched by every culture. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, Sikhs and non-believers. Our patchwork heritage is a strength we owe to our religious freedom."
The Secular Coalition for America recognizes that religious freedom is a fundamental American value and that the best guarantee of that freedom is to protect and strengthen the secular character of our government. A government that does not favor any particular religion or faith is the best guarantee of religious freedom to all people-including those without religious beliefs.
We encourage fellow Americans to take part in the National Religious Freedom Day by getting to know more about the religious liberties guaranteed to them, and by continuing to support the separation of church and state at every level of government.
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