Where Did AG William Barr Pinpoint a Crisis in America?

“This is not decay. It is organized destruction.”

On October 11, 2019, Attorney General William Barr spoke before Notre Dame Law School and further stated, “Secularists, and their allies among the ‘progressives,’ have marshalled all the forces of mass communications, popular culture, the entertainment industry, and academia in an unremitting assault on religion and traditional values.” Barr calls “The most serious challenge is in the schools today.”

General Barr pinpointed “religious liberty in America…and it’s the “important priority in this Administration and for this Department of Justice.”

He spoke about “the Framer’s belief that religion was indispensable to sustaining our free system of government….The challenge we face is precisely what the Founding Fathers foresaw would be our supreme test as a free society.”

Barr said that the social order needed to come from the people and their internal values and limitations upon their appetites. He detailed the erosion of our American values through the illegitimacy rate, the “wreckage of the family,” suicide rates and drug overdoses, which comprise in one year more that were lost in the Vietnam War.

General Barr described specific challenges:

  • “…the force, fervor, and comprehensiveness of the assault on religion we are experiencing today. This is not decay; it is organized destruction.”
  • Secularists “are the instruments used not only to affirmatively promote secular orthodoxy, but also drown out and silence opposing voices, and to attack viciously and hold up to ridicule any dissenters.”
  • “Those who defy the creed risk a figurative burning at the stake—social, educational, and professional ostracism and exclusion waged through lawsuits and savage social-media campaigns.
  • “But today—in the face of all the increasing pathologies—instead of addressing the underlying cause…we call on the State to mitigate the social costs of personal misconduct and irresponsibility.”
  • “So the reaction to growing illegitimacy is not sexual responsibility, but abortion.”
  • “The reaction to drug addition is safe injection sites.”
  • “The solution to the breakdown of the family if for the State to set itself up as the ersatz husband for single mothers and the ersatz father to their children.” That is an artificial fix, not a cure.
  • “Law is being used as a weapon” in the courts through “judicial interpretation” and by “seeking to eliminate laws that reflect traditional moral norms,” such as abortion and euthanasia.”
  • Radical secularists use “the law aggressively to force religious people and entities to subscribe to practices and policies that are antithetical to their faith,” such as paying for contraceptive and abortion coverage in health insurance.
  • “Similarly, militant secularists today do not have a live and let live spirit—they are not content to leave religious people alone to practice their faith. Instead, they seem to take a delight in compelling people to violate their conscience.

This administration stands strongly for religious freedom in America. So now the battle is shifting to the State level. Montana refused religious schools in their school choice program, so they chose to shut it down.

Of course, a Washington Post opinion article charged Barr with “a tacit endorsement of theocracy” and said Barr’s words could be “terrifying.” “Such policies are surely a greater threat to religious freedom than asking, say, cake bakers to respect public accommodation laws.” The clash of worldviews is readily conspicuous. The question is, which one will win?

General Barr is right in his assessment and in his answer to these problems. He calls for personal discipline and restraint on our own appetites. “This is tough work. It is hard to resist the constant seductions of our contemporary society. This is where we need grace, prayer”…and for the churches and Judeo Christian citizens to stand up. He says we must prepare our children morally for this onslaught. And “finally as lawyers, we should be particularly active in the struggle that is being waged against religion on the legal plane.”

Thank God for Liberty Institute, Liberty Counsel, and other Christian legal organizations who defend religious liberty for free. They need our prayers and support.

This is a statement for all of us. “We must be vigilant to resist efforts by the forces of secularization to drive religious viewpoints from the public square and to impinge upon the free exercise of our faith.”

Thank God that General Barr, the Department of Justice and this Administration “will be at the forefront of this effort—ready to fight for the most cherished of our liberties—the freedom to live according to our faith.”

You can see the original transcript without media intervention HERE.