How would you react if an employee at your favorite restaurant cursed at you because of your beliefs and forced you to leave?
This just happened to a team member who works for our Nebraska state allied group, Nebraska Family Alliance. Marilyn handled the situation in her favorite coffee and crepe shop with all grace, a true example of what it means to be salt and light in today’s culture.
But the story is much bigger than Marilyn’s experience at a local coffee shop in Lincoln, Nebraska. The real story is about what we believe America should be and the legacy we hope to leave to our children.
As Marilyn said so well in her letter, Americans “will inevitably disagree on political and policy issues.” Even deeper, Americans who carry the flag for the LGBT movement will inevitably hold different worldviews from Americans who are Bible-believing, Christ-followers—and those competing worldviews will lead to disagreements in law and culture.
Yet the America we envision is one where all are free to hold their own beliefs, without the government forcing anyone’s beliefs on someone else. We envision an America where every person is shown respect, yet free to voice their opinions.
In other words, we believe that the barista’s behavior toward Marilyn was wrong, but we also wouldn’t support a Christian barista yelling at an LGBT patron and forcing her to leave a coffeeshop. We believe that a Christian bakery owner shouldn’t be forced to create a custom-made cake for a same-sex wedding, but we also believe that an LGBT bakery owner shouldn’t be forced to create a custom-made cake for our Christian ministry’s anniversary.
We invite you to read Marilyn’s story from Lincoln, Nebraska below, and we hope you’ll agree with her that the bigger story about the kind of Nebraska—and America—she envisions is indeed possible.
Read Marilyn’s story: I Was Cursed Out of a Coffee Shop for My Views. We Can All Do Better.
~The Family Policy Alliance Team
Family Policy Alliance is proud to work alongside Nebraska Family Alliance, one of our 40 state-based allies. This article first appeared on their site.
by Karen Bowling, Executive Director of Nebraska Family Alliance
This month, 286,000 students are returning to public school in Nebraska. A question I am asked frequently during this season is, “what are my child’s religious rights in a public school?” Here are 5 religious rights that every student has in public school:
#1 The Right to Pray
Every student has the right to pray, discuss their faith, read Scripture, distribute literature, and invite fellow students to join their particular religious group as long as it is voluntary, non- disruptive or coercive, and it occurs during non-instructional time.
#2 The Right to Express Religious Views
Students have the right to express their religious views during a class discussion or as part of a written assignment or art activity as long as it is relevant to the subject under consideration and meets the assignment requirements.
#3 The Right to Form Religious Clubs
Secondary school students have the right to form religious clubs if the school receives federal funds and allows other non-curriculum related clubs to meet during non-instructional time.
Religious clubs must be student-led—a non-student cannot lead the club. Regular attendance by an outside adult may be prohibited in order to avoid the appearance of the club being initiated or directed by a non-student.
Teachers may be present at religious club meetings as monitors, but they may not participate in club activities.
Student religious clubs may have access to school facilities and media on the same basis that other non-curriculum related clubs do.
#4 The Right to Wear Religious Attire
Students have the right to wear religious attire required by their religion such as head scarves or yarmulkes in school. Students may also display religious messages on clothing or jewelry to the same extent that other messages are permitted.
#5 The Right Not to be Required to Violate Their Religious Beliefs
Students have the right to not be required to violate their religious beliefs. Students also may be able to be excused from lessons that are objectionable to the student or the student’s parents on religious or other conscientious grounds.
Learn more about our allied group, Nebraska Family Alliance.
Many states have been taking advantage of a Republican majority to push through important pro-life measures. That includes Nebraska, who recently passed a first-in-the-nation bill that protects medically challenging pregnancies.
Karen Bowling, executive director of Nebraska Family Alliance, one of Family Policy Alliance’s 40 state-based groups, tells us about the recent wins in the Cornhusker state.
Led by Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson, 11 more states have joined a lawsuit against the Obama Administration’s bathroom edict.
Al Riskowski of Nebraska Family Alliance tells us he’s proud to work with elected officials who stand up for our values and the families they represent.
Signs of hope are springing up all over the country, thanks to your support for Family Policy Alliance and your network of state allies. While Washington, D.C., remains mired in gridlock, encouraging victories continue to roll in at the state level. Here are a few of your victories achieved through Family Policy Alliance.
Pushing back on gay “overreach”
While the radical agenda of the homosexual and transgender lobby has rocked the nation in recent years, the “pushback” is gaining real steam. It started in Houston last November with the overwhelming defeat of a SOGI (Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity) special- rights ordinance—a victory in which you played a major role through your support of this ministry.
The momentum continued in Indiana this winter. The top goal of gay lobbying groups this year was to pass a SOGI special-rights law in the Hoosier state—completing their 2015 assault on religious freedom in Indiana. Top Republican legislators joined with Democrats and the media in an all-out push to pass the SOGI bill. But Family Policy Alliance reached out to thousands of Hoosiers with phone calls and emails targeting key legislators. Meanwhile, our state ally, Indiana Family Action, organized committee testimony and worked the capitol hard—resulting in a resounding defeat of the SOGI.
And in North Carolina this spring, the momentum became a trend. After the Charlotte City Council passed a SOGI ordinance, Family Policy Alliance and our state ally, North Carolina Family Policy Council, called for a special session to overturn that measure. On March 23, the legislature passed and the governor signed a law to do just that. It also stopped other localities from similar mischief that would, among other things, allow men to use women’s restrooms and locker rooms. Nebraska Family Alliance also worked this spring to stop a SOGI special-rights bill for the 16th year in a row.
The theme in all of these victories? Homosexual activists are overreaching with their radical policies, and lawmakers and the public—with the help of Family Policy Alliance—are pushing back and winning!