Official Statement from Patrick McCollum

Many of you now know the result of the Patrick McCollum case. For those that don't, it's fairly simply. Patrick McCollum filled a lawsuit against the California prison system in hopes of gaining equal rights for Pagan Chaplains. Right now, California has a "five faiths" system. Those who are Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Muslim or Native American can hold a staff position of chaplain for their faith, those who are not, are simply out of luck. As a Pagan Chaplain, McCollum saw this injustice as unconstitutional and as a result a legal battle ensued. In response, an amicus brief was filed by a group called Wallbuilders, which is asking the court to say that McCollum's suit has no merit at all, because the First Amendment applies only to monotheistic religions like Christianity, so a suit filed by Pagans should have no standing.

Now, rather than face the constitutional questions which this suit brings up, the courts simply stated that McCollum had no right to file simply because he was NOT a prisoner and prisoners have the right to file their own suits...

Anyways, that's how things stand right now. But I am sure the fight isn't over! I know it's not as far as I am concerned, and I know there are quite a few groups that agree with me...

So, today, he's released an official statement, and although it's nine pages long, you really should go read it (get the pdf download here). I urge you to take the time! This is not just a court case by a man who want's a job. This is an infringement on the proposed religious freedoms and equality that we are said to have in this country, and it can not me allowed to stand!

I urge you to make your opinion on this matter heard! We can not allow our freedom and our equal rights to be removed or ignored. To do so is not only a great disrespect to those who fought and continue to fight for them, but a disrespect for ourselves and a statement that our rights are not worth fighting for... Even if all you do is voice your opinion on Facebook, don't ignore this issue! I for one, have written my state officials and asked them to make sure this does not happen in my state as well. I have asked them to please uphold the right of religious freedom for ALL not just some... While I haven't heard back as of yet, and I doubt I will, the point is to make sure those in power know their citizens will NOT stand for this type of prejudicial action against a religious belief!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Check out what else I'm writing!