This week the ACLU issued a series of statements on Twitter opposing the Arkansas Religious Freedom Amendment, S.J.R. 14.
This good measure by Sen. Jason Rapert (R – Conway) and Rep. Jimmy Gazaway (R – Paragould) would amend the Arkansas Constitution.
If adopted, it would prevent the government from burdening a person’s free exercise of religion.
The measure is similar to Arkansas’ state Religious Freedom Restoration Act. You Can Read S.J.R. 14 Here.
According to the ACLU, S.J.R. 14 is “among the most extreme [religious freedom measures] in the country,” and it would “put Arkansas out of step with nearly all other states.”
But that simply is not the case.
Most states have enacted Religious Freedom Restoration Acts similar to S.J.R. 14 already.
Alabama has a religious freedom amendment very similar to S.J.R. 14 in its state constitution.
In fact the ACLU used to support state and federal Religious Freedom Restoration Acts like these in 1990s.
State and federal measures restoring religious freedom in America came about because courts had so badly eroded religious liberty in America. The laws simply help restore protections for the free exercise of religion.
S.J.R. 14 is no different in that regard. It’s just a good measure that will help ensure that our state constitution protects religious liberty in Arkansas. That’s something that all of us ought to be able to support.