Josh Hawley is unapologetic.
He is unapologetic for the lies he continues to perpetuate regarding the 2020 election. He is unapologetic for his raised fist in solidarity with an organized mob outside the Capitol building, intent upon destruction — a mob who planned their revolt and murdered a police officer.
He is unapologetic for supporting the attempted overthrow of our democracy simply because the guy he wanted to win did not.
Much like believing in free and fair elections only when the results suit him, Josh Hawley believes in freedom of religion, only if that religion suits him. In a 2017 speech Hawley delivered to The American Renewal Project, he indicated not one square inch of all creation exists over which Jesus Christ is not Lord. Hawley said, “We are called to take that message into every sphere of life that we touch, including the political realm. … That is our charge. To take the Lordship of Christ, that message into the public realm and to seek the obedience of the nations. Of our nation!” Read that carefully.
Josh Hawley believes the only religion you and every other person in the United States and in every nation in the world should be allowed to practice is Christianity.
That is not freedom of religion. Josh Hawley flouts the mandate of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. The Establishment Clause prohibits the government from making any law “respecting an establishment of religion.” The government cannot establish an official religion, nor can it unduly favor one religion over another. The government is also prohibited from favoring religion over nonreligion.
Josh Hawley is free to practice only Christianity; however, he is not free to force others to practice only a particular religion. Josh Hawley is free to be religious; however, he is not free to force others to be religious. Josh Hawley graduated from Yale Law School. He knows this.
Josh Hawley’s calls for one religion to the exclusion of all others are unconstitutional. Josh Hawley’s solidarity with a rabble who committed insurrection is reprehensible. Josh Hawley’s continued lies and disregard for what he knows is the law are dangerous.
Missourians do not need Josh Hawley’s apology. We need his resignation.
Christine Stamper is a Columbia resident and an attorney.