Wednesday, November 12, 2008

ACLU Attempts to Ban Christians from Public Streets

Mayor Charles Caillouet and Kathy Benoit, president of the Thibodaux (LA) Chamber of Commerce . . . say the ACLU has mistakenly assumed the festival is backed by local government dollars. They say the city has no role other than use of its streets.

-- From "Legal battle erupts over religion at Thibodaux festival" by Ben Lundin, Staff Writer, Daily Comet Laforche Parish, LA 10/8/08

The Alliance Defense Fund, a national conservative-Christian nonprofit, said Friday that it would offer the city free legal defense against the ACLU’s charge that the city has violated the U.S. Constitution by promoting “Christian music and dance” at the arts, crafts and music festival.

Michael Johnson, senior legal counsel with the Alliance Defense Fund, said the ACLU’s threat is “baseless” and that “there is certainly no legal concern with the festival’s live musical entertainment, which is provided free of charge by a variety of local and regional artists.”

“The ACLU has increasingly made sport of bullying public officials throughout the state of Louisiana,” Johnson said.

The Alliance Defense Fund’s announcement comes in response to the ACLU’s request that the city give written notice that it will cease participation in any event promoting a religious ideology.

“Contrary to the contentions of the ACLU, Christian artists and performers have the same rights of access and participation at the festival as anyone else and can not, and should not, be treated as second-class citizens,” Johnson wrote in the letter, a copy of which is posted on the group’s Web site. “Their music and their messages are fully protected under the free-speech and free-exercise clauses of the First Amendment, regardless of whether the ACLU is offended by them.”

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.