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The City of Houston is Demanding to have Oversight of the Sermons being Preached in local Churches

I admit, the headline sounds far-fetched. Sadly, however, it is not.

A while back the city council, along with Mayor Annise Parker, chose to pass an ordinance that practically allows men to use women’s restrooms. The people of Houston spoke out against the measure by suing the city and turning in a petition with more than three times the number of names needed to initiate action by the city.

However, this move to fight back against the tyrannical workings of the city council and the Mayor’s office, led the city leaders to lash out in retaliation by turning Houston into a terrifying version of Stalin-era Soviet Russia.

Officials with the city of Houston, Texas, who are defending a controversial ordinance that would allow men to use women’s restrooms now have demanded to see the sermons preached by several area pastors.

The Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a motion to quash the city’s demands to see the sermons. ADF argues the pastors are not party to the lawsuit, and the city’s strategy doesn’t meet the requirements of state law that requires such efforts “be reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence, not be overly broad, seek only information that is not privileged and relevant to the subject matter of the litigation, and not cause undue burden or harassment.”

annise-parker-houston-lesbian-mayorADF said city officials “are upset over a voter lawsuit filed after the city council rejected valid petitions to repeal a law that allows members of the opposite sex into each other’s restrooms.”

ADF attorneys say the city is “illegitimately demanding that the pastors, who are not party to the lawsuit, turn over their constitutionally protected sermons and other communications simply so the city can see if the pastors have ever opposed or criticized the city.”

“City council members are supposed to be public servants, not ‘Big Brother’ overlords who will tolerate no dissent or challenge,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley. “In this case, they have embarked upon a witch hunt, and we are asking the court to put a stop to it.”

ADF Litigation Counsel Christiana Holcomb said the city’s subpoena of sermons and other pastoral communications is needless and unprecedented.

“The city council and its attorneys are engaging in an inquisition designed to stifle any critique of its actions. Political and social commentary is not a crime; it is protected by the First Amendment,” she said.

Liberal political operatives continue their very real war on Christianity. These same liberals who continually repeat the mantra of “separation of Church and state” have no problem mingling the two when it is the state exerting influence on the church.

In fact, so perverse have the ideas and philosophy of modern liberals become, that they’ve distorted Jefferson’s ideas of “Church and State” into the very opposite of what he believed they should be!

When Thomas Jefferson spoke of the “separation of church and state” with the Danbury, Connecticut Baptist association – he was speaking of the right of churches to operate freely without influence from the government. Modern liberals pretend that his statements meant to protect the state from the church!

Nothing could be further from the truth.

separationBelieving with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

Notice that the separation is all about the First Amendment establishment clause. The idea of “separation of church and state” is all about the legislature not making any laws “respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”…

Just imagine the horror our founders would feel to know that the political leaders of an American city were demanding to see the sermons of local preachers. The saying “rolling over in their graves” has probably never been more apt.

Houston city leaders have completely turned the ideas of our founders on their heads. They have chosen to ignore the will of the people, they have chosen to pass immoral laws, they have chosen to ignore the due process that they themselves established, and worst of all, they have chosen to persecute their local Christian population because the government dislikes their moral beliefs.

Houston has become the perfect example of everything that is wrong with liberal politics and morality. Congratulations, city leaders.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Onan Coca

Onan is the Editor-in-Chief at Liberty Alliance media group. He's also the managing editor at Eaglerising.com, Constitution.com and the managing partner at iPatriot.com. You can read more of his writing at Eagle Rising.
Onan is a graduate of Liberty University (2003) and earned his M.Ed. at Western Governors University in 2012. Onan lives in Atlanta with his wife and their three wonderful children.

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