Rally for Religious Freedom: Eve McNeil

Speech of Eve McNeil at the Reno Rally for Religious Liberty,

23rd of March 2012.

* WE WANT – *                          * RELIGIOUS FREEDOM! *

       Hello Reno!  *   Hello friends of justice!  *    Thank you for coming downtown today!  *   We are all busy people. * I am so glad to know that a denial of our religious freedom brings good people to the streets.            

Why are we gathered here on LIBERTY street?  *   The winds are blowing.  A storm is brewing.  *   We don’t think orthodox Jews should have to pay for other people’s pork sandwiches.  *    And Quakers cannot be forced to buy anybody’s ammunition.   * The law that brought us out today is truly that extreme.  * The United States Department of Health and Human services has violated Catholics’ rights to their own conscience.  * They have decided that their own opinions and values matter more than ours.  * As a woman and an American, I disagree!

The United States protects all different religious practices and beliefs. *  America’s very identity is a safe-haven from religious coercion.  *   People from around the world look to us and come to us for freedom. *    Thank you to all whose who have alerted us to this current danger. * May we forever defend the land the pilgrims found, a land free from persecution.

Our nation’s image as an upholder of freedom has been stained.  Who would have thought single stroke of the pen this February could wipe out 235 years of the first amendment?   Just like that, it smashed the freedom of convictions for churches and individuals.

Ladies and gentlemen, you and I must preserve this precious liberty. * You never treasure something properly until it is lost. *   If there is any war on women, it is a war on Lady Liberty!  * We can’t stand by. *    Looking out at you today, knowing what is at stake, * I know we who rally here won’t stop fighting this lie until it is revoked.

The HHS mandate defines religion wrongly.  * They say religion is merely the promotion of our values among ourselves.   * By this huge error, the mandate restricts us from living our ethics in all parts of our lives. * It denies that acts of service are as an important part of our gospel as worship.

Today, we can live our faith, but what about tomorrow?  * Catholic hospitals care for 1/6 of our nation’s patients.  * Catholic schools and universities have 3 million students. Just a few blocks from here Catholic Charities feeds 600 hungry people a day. * It is outrageous to force us to choose between our conscience and our ministry.    This is not justice.  This is not freedom!

I wonder…Why don’t they allow options for all conscientious objectors?   * Why did they specifically leave out men’s reproductive health services?    * Why is women’s contraception an all important political mission? * Is this about votes?   Should anyone be forced to pay for this? *   What will our nation become if policies are set up without respect for all people?

The mandate is bad for everyone.  * Women want freedom of conscience! * Women want religion without government definitions or commands.  * Requiring anyone to betray their deeply held religious beliefs is wrong and un-American.

Why can we smile? We have hope! * Because rights don’t come from Mandates.  We have these god-given rights already.  * The Constitution explains our religious freedoms clearly and religious freedom is the most basic law of our land.  *   American standing together can fight off this attack against civil rights *      just as bravely and loyally and proudly as we have always done.

We will climb mountains. * We will cross the plains. * Let’s reverse this nonsense now!  * There are 88 days left for “comments” at regulations.gov.    *   If you believe in freedom of religion, speak up!  * Comment on the administration’s website, write editorials. * Demand that they revoke this dictate. * Make phone calls, write e-mails, and always vote for freedom.

* WE WANT – *                          * RELIGIOUS FREEDOM! *




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