Washington—Heritage Foundation President Kay C. James released the following statement in response to President Trump’s announcement today on National Religious Freedom Day:
“Today’s announcement is a welcome response to a serious national problem. For too long, Americans have faced restrictions on their ability to live according to their religious beliefs. Government policies have infringed on the freedom of students, social service providers, and other religious organizations to act according to their beliefs in the public square.
President Trump has responded with policies that would protect the freedom of students to pray in school; that would repeal discriminatory Obama-era rules that violate the rights of religious groups that provide social services; and that would prevent states from discriminating against qualifying religious organizations when distributing grant money.
America’s Founders resisted the temptation to force citizens to conform to a single government-approved orthodoxy. The First Amendment that enshrines religious freedom for all is a national treasure. Government respect for this freedom is essential to peace and tolerance in a society of many religions. Today, the Trump administration has rightly returned some of the freedoms of Americans to think, speak, and act according to their own beliefs—not the government's.”