Barr: ‘Militant secularists’ trying to impose values on believers

By WND Staff

U.S. Attorney General William Barr (video screenshot)

“Militant secularists” across America long have charged that religious people are “imposing” their views on them.

But it’s actually the other way around, contended Attorney General William Barr in an interview with Cardinal Timothy Dolan on Sirius XM.

“I feel today religion is being driven out of the marketplace of ideas and there’s a organized militant secular effort to drive religion out of our lives,” Barr told Dolan, the Federalist reported.

“To me the problem today is not that religious people are trying to impose their views on nonreligious people, it’s the opposite — it’s that militant secularists are trying to impose their values on religious people and they’re not accommodating the freedom of religion of people of faith.”

Barr was excoriated by the left for a speech last October about religious liberty to Notre Dame Law School, warning students against depending on the government and unlimited licentiousness.

See the interview:

The Federalist noted that since “developing similar ideas in depth in several public talks, Barr has been the subject of a series of hit pieces in publications including The New York Times and The New Yorker.”

“It’s not just his full-throated defense of the natural right to obey one’s conscience above one’s government that gets their goat. Barr’s concern for the rule of law, fair play, and due process especially about Russian collusion and impeachment have also brought out the knives,” the Federalist said.

The report said a 10,000-word New Yorker article by David Rohde may have made one accurate assessment: “Barr is the most feared, criticized, and effective member of Trump’s Cabinet.”

“There is certainly some relationship between the left’s fear and the right’s effectiveness, and thus the neutering attempts,” the Federalist said. “As Sohrab Amari noted, Barr has been ridiculously labeled an ‘extremist Catholic’ associated with a ‘secretive, ultra-orthodox Catholic sect.’

“Of course, the point of flak like this is to polarize the target and thus make him ineffective through clouds of mistrust. A parallel effort has been underway much longer against the nation’s first freedom: the duty to obey God before men. Thus in her own attack article against Barr last month in The New York Times, Katherine Stewart put the words religious liberty and religious freedom in scare quotes, even though these are longstanding natural rights that enjoy U.S. legal protection for very good reasons that include staunching bigotry. The ignorant scare quotes are becoming common in even outlets that style themselves objective news sources.”

Stewart accused Barr of embracing “wholesale the ‘religious liberty’ rhetoric of today’s Christian nationalist movement.” She cited efforts to protect the rights of Christians to be given equal access to a program to help needy children.

The Federalist said Stewart is “doing exactly what Barr says she’s doing, while pretending that she is not.”

“Stewart is making a ‘secular effort to drive religion out of our lives’ and trying to impose her values on religious people while ‘not accommodating the freedom of religion of people of faith.'”

The Federalist said her values “say that only pagans — people with atheist, pantheist, syncretist, or agnostic religious beliefs — may fully access public goods.”

“People with theistic religious beliefs may not. This is not equality or tolerance — it is prejudice.”

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