Kathryn Lopez

But the attitudes expressed in the bill are not foreign to us here in America. President Barack Obama's nominee for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a Georgetown University professor named Chai Feldblum, wrote in 2006: "Just as we do not tolerate private racial beliefs that adversely affect African-Americans in the commercial arena, even if such beliefs are based on religious views, we should similarly not tolerate private beliefs about sexual orientation and gender identity that adversely affect LGBT people." Feldblum believes that there is a "zero-sum game" being played between religious freedom and the homosexual activists, in which "a gain for one side necessarily entails a corresponding loss for the other side." Religious liberty, in Feldblum's estimation, must give.

This conversation about religious liberty, homosexuality and the definition of rights will be a prominent one this term as the U.S. Supreme Court takes up Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, in which it will decide whether religious groups on college campuses must be open to students who do not share their beliefs. The Court will decide, in other words, whether we're still free to associate or not.

The conflict between religious liberty versus LGBT activists doesn't have to be this fraught. As David French, a lawyer for the Alliance Defense Fund, which specializes in religious-liberty litigation, recently put it: "If your idea of law is that it is an instrument of domination and exclusion, then, yes, legal disputes between ideological opposites are 'zero-sum games.' But if your idea of the Constitution is that it protects the fundamental liberties of all citizens (which happens to be the way the document is written), then -- quite literally -- everyone wins when those liberties are vindicated."

Christianity will be history if the history we're making today divorces itself from its roots -- moral, yes, but legal, ethical, and political, too. And while more of us need to have a heightened awareness of the threats menacing Christianity throughout the West -- mercifully, it's not just a pope, a cardinal and a rabbi who are paying attention.


Kathryn Lopez

Kathryn Jean Lopez, editor of National Review Online, writes a weekly column of conservative political and social commentary for Newspaper Enterprise Association.