Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders is standing up for religious freedom and rejecting calls to remove the chalk artwork her children created outside the governor’s mansion.
“New artwork to welcome people into the Governor’s mansion! So proud of how hard the kids worked and how well their masterpiece turned out!” Sanders wrote when sharing a photo.
The design features a large cross at the center of what appears to resemble a colorful stained-glass window.
Americans United for Separation of Church and State called for the governor to remove the artwork.
In a letter of response, she defended her faith and declared that people of all faiths are welcome in their state.
This is yet another example of liberal activists trying to censor expressions of faith, something we as conservatives must oppose every time it’s proposed.
We should defend our right to express ourselves without fear and intimidation from those who disagree with us or don’t understand us. The Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution provides protections for our religious freedoms and allows for public officials, including their families, to make earnest expressions of faith without being accused of bigotry or exclusionary behavior.
“Promotion of one religion over others through a religious display at an entrance to the Mansion sends the impermissible message that those who do not share the favored faith are unwelcome and will be treated differently,” the group’s letter reads. “While you and your family members are free to create and display religious imagery in private areas of your Mansion and its grounds, displaying a cross at an entrance ‘to welcome people into the Governor’s mansion’ violates the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution. We therefore ask that you remove the display and refrain from placing similar displays in public areas of the Mansion in the future.”
But Sanders rejected the call for removal in no uncertain terms.
Gov. Sanders’ response was both powerful and inspiring. She made it clear that she would not be intimidated by those who seek to silence her views on religion or erase a crucial part of her identity and the identity of her kids.
“I have received your letter and my answer is no. I will not erase the beautiful cross my kids drew in chalk on the driveway of the Governor’s Mansion or remove my post on social media, and I will not now or ever hide that I am a Christian, saved by Christ,” the governor declared in her letter of response.
This is a message that needs to be heard loud and clear. Americans have the right to freely express themselves without being censored by those who seek to limit their rights due solely because they don’t agree with them politically or religiously.
We can only hope that more elected officials will follow Gov. Sanders’ example in defending our constitutional right to religious expression when faced with these kinds of attacks from liberal activists seeking censorship instead of dialogue.