The James Wilson Foundation on Natural Rights and the American Founding

“Religious Liberty Isn’t Enough”: Ryan Anderson in the Wall Street Journal

by James Wilson Institute on February 1, 2021

In a recent op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, EPPC President and JWI affiliated scholar Dr. Ryan Anderson argues that in order to protect our values and way of life, conservatives must fight for our social beliefs in the realm of public opinion as well as in the courts. Most conservative positions on social issues, Anderson notes, are quite popular among the public. Common sense abortion restrictions like the Hyde Amendment, regulations protecting women’s sports, and limits on gender therapy for minors are rules that most of America supports. And with science on our side in all of these issues, Anderson continues, conservative Americans should bring the fight to the court of public opinion before it’s too late.

Some excerpts from the article:

“Conservatives have no choice but to push back. And here, too, the terrain to defend is not primarily about religious liberty, or religion at all. Children feeling discomfort with their bodies shouldn’t be told the lie that they’re ‘trapped in the wrong body,’ nor should adults pump them full of puberty-blocking drugs and cross-sex hormones. Doing so is unethical medicine, a violation of the bodily integrity of children—whether or not those kids or their parents or doctors are religious.”

“Even when it makes sense to argue these issues as matters of religious liberty, conservatives shouldn’t pretend to be agnostic about the truth of our perspective. We’ll have the best shot at winning fights over abortion restrictions or child sex-change procedures when conservatives are willing to assert that their beliefs are true, not merely protected in law.”

Read the full article here.

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Law and liberty cannot rationally become the objects of our love, unless they first become the objects of our knowledge.
— James Wilson, Lectures on Law, 1790