A consensus on religious liberties

A joint statement
Despite public school controversies that generate sparks every December, church-state columnist Charles Haynes of the Freedom Forum recently wrote, “The First Amendment solution is stunningly simple: Schools should plan holiday programs that are educational in purpose and balanced in content [but] to pretend Christmas doesn’t exist . . . is just plain silly.”

A diverse group of U.S. experts on religious rights and limits on religious expression in public settings issued a consensus statement on what the current laws say on 35 recurring issues—often in matters where religious activity and government roles may appear to be intertwined.

“This should put aside some of the red herrings in the public debate,” said Holly Hollman, general counsel for the Baptist Joint Committee on Religious Liberty. “There is more clarity in the law than many would assume from the heated debates in the media and elsewhere.”


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