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A Call for Equal Treatment

A Call for Equal Treatment

at 10:52 pm

Texas Constitution, Article 1. Bill of Rights, Sec. 3 EQUAL RIGHTS
“All free men, when they form a social compact, have equal rights, and no man, or set of men, is entitled to exclusive separate public emoluments, or privileges, but in consideration of public services.”

 

The language is a bit old-fashioned, but this clause of the Texas Constitution’s Bill of Rights guarantees that all Texans, without exception, be treated equally under law ‒ a right also guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. This simple and enlightened idea is the basis for our free society, and is the backbone of most the issues on which Secular Texas takes a stand.

When Texans of any religious creed demand that our shared government enforce their dogmas, their beliefs or their morals through the power of the law, they demand special privilege over all Texans. When the legislature enacts laws to enforce personal religious beliefs, it imposes on the religious and civil rights of all Texans, giving special privilege to one group, and violates this fundamental right guaranteed by both the Texas and United States Constitutions.

When we enforce religious beliefs through law, we violate the rights of people of other faiths ‒ or those of no faith ‒ forcing them to live out the beliefs of others in violation of their own personal conscience. It also violates the rights of people who agree with the religiously based law, by forcing them to follow this tenet of their faith not as a person free to make their own moral and religious decisions, but under threat of law.

When government stays out of the business of enforcing religious beliefs through law, all citizens are protected to live according to their personal religious beliefs or conscience as they see fit. With this view, government is not a moral force, but instead a coming together of the people to lay out the infrastructure for their society. And there may be no more important piece of infrastructure for a free society than guaranteeing that all people are treated equally under the law.

“The civil rights of none shall be abridged on account of religious belief or worship…”
James Madison, while introducing the Bill of Rights to Congress.

 

“No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; ... nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
Constitution of the United States, 14th Amendment, Section 1.

Texas Constitution, Article 1. Bill of Rights, Sec. 3 EQUAL RIGHTS “All free men, ...
The 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution, and Section 3 of our Texas ...
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About TxTW

Texas Theocracy Watch is a service of Secular Texas.

With researchers and observers in Austin, Texas Theocracy Watch reports and comments on religion creeping into our state and local governments and the State Board of Education. It is our goal to keep the secular community up to date on news related to secular government in Texas and around the nation, as other states are often used as testing grounds for religious legislation. In addition, Texas Theocracy Watch attempts to bring context and a rational, sober analysis to the current events of Texas politics, as relate to our goals.

About Secular Texas

Secular Texas is an ad hoc group of citizens advocating for the concerns of the secular community of Texas. We seek a rational state government that enacts policy based on scientific realities. Secular Texas also addresses any attempt to use State or Local government resources or power to endorse religion, or provide privilege to religious institutions in Texas.

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