by WorldTribune Staff, May 13, 2019
Despite freedom of religion being enshrined in the First Amendment, many today “have little tolerance for traditional Christian beliefs,” Vice President Mike Pence said on May 11 in a commencement address at Liberty University.
Pence told the graduates:
“Because we live in a time when it’s become acceptable and even fashionable to ridicule and even discriminate against people of faith. Dr. (Ben) Carson just talked about it a few moments ago.
You know, it wasn’t all that long ago that the last administration brought the full weight of the federal government against the Little Sisters of the Poor merely because that group of nuns refused to provide a health plan that violated their deeply held religious beliefs. And when the state of Georgia recently was debating legal protections for the unborn, a bevy of Hollywood liberals said they would boycott the entire state.
And when my wife Karen returned to teach art at an elementary Christian school earlier this year, we faced harsh attacks by the media and the secular Left. And a major newspaper reporter actually started a new hashtag, called ‘Expose Christian Schools,’ inviting students to share their ‘horror stories’ of Christian education.
The freedom of religion is enshrined in our First Amendment and in the hearts of every American. And these attacks on Christian education are un-American. I’m proud to report our administration has already taken decisive action to protect religious liberty, and we’ll continue to do just that. And I promise you: We will always stand up for the right of Americans to live, to learn, and to worship God according to the dictates of their conscience.
The American people cherish our tradition of religious education, and as President Trump said at this very podium two years ago, on our watch, ‘No one is ever going to stop you from practicing your faith or from preaching what is in your heart.’ That’s a promise.
But my message to all of you in the Class of 2019 is — derives of the moment that we’re living in today. You know, throughout most of American history, it’s been pretty easy to call yourself Christian. It didn’t even occur to people that you might be shunned or ridiculed for defending the teachings of the Bible.
But things are different now. Some of the loudest voices for tolerance today have little tolerance for traditional Christian beliefs. So as you go about your daily life, just be ready. Because you’re going to be asked not just to tolerate things that violate your faith; you’re going to be asked to endorse them. You’re going to be asked to bow down to the idols of the popular culture.
So you need to prepare your minds for action, men and women. You need to show that we can love God and love our neighbor at the same time through words and deeds. And you need to be prepared to meet opposition.
As the founder of this university often said, quote, ‘No one ever achieved greatness without experiencing opposition.’
So, men and women of Liberty University, Class of 2019, as you strive for greatness, know that you’ll face challenges, you’ll face opposition. But just know this: If, like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, you end up in the fire, there’ll be another in the fire.”
See Pence’s address here