Baptists vs. Obama
A Texas university joins the battle to defend religious liberty.

Samuel W. Oliver, president of East Texas Baptist University


LOPEZ: What might Roger Williams have had to say about this?

OLIVER: As you probably know, Roger Williams fled from Massachusetts and founded Rhode Island because his religious views were not tolerated in Massachusetts. This is one of the reasons Baptists are so sensitive to coercive government actions that infringe upon religious liberty.


LOPEZ: What do you wish every American voter might consider about your school, the situation it is in because of the HHS mandate, and religious liberty itself?

OLIVER: I hope that people would see East Texas Baptist University as a deeply sincere Christ-centered university seeking to live out its mission and vision.

Think about it: If the government can take this step, where will this road end? Today, the administration is trying to force us to provide our employees with abortion-causing drugs. What’s next?

If the government can force Catholic monks to dispense birth control, what can’t the government do? If the government can decide that East Texas Baptist University is not religious enough to have the right to religious liberty, what can’t the government do? If this administration can just decide that religious beliefs are less important than its chosen policy goals, what can’t it do?

These questions are alarming. And that is why people from all across the country are joining together out of concern that this mandate threatens to erode one of our most precious rights, our religious liberty, guaranteed to us by the First Amendment.

— Kathryn Jean Lopez is editor-at-large of National Review Online