Religious freedom is amid the many personal freedoms. It refers tothe ability to follow freely a religious belief without fear ofjudgment from others, or practicing a religion, that one selects. Allthrough history, many individuals have abandoned their homes becauseof religious persecution due to believing what they deem right. Forinstance, the first American immigrants visited the US due toreligious beliefs, which were refuted in their nation. There are eveninstances when people have been prosecuted for failing to follow areligious belief. In many nations, civilians are free to believe intheir religion of choice without worrying of the consequences.Religion is an integral part of an individual’s life and peoplemust be allowed to follow their beliefs. However, there are emergingissues, which place religious freedom in danger.
There are many reasons why religious freedom is in danger. It isunder threat from courts. This is because there has been an apparentsequence by courts to make equality a priority at the expense ofreligion, which jeopardizes religious freedom. There are severalrecent cases, in Europe and America, which illustrate this danger.One is that of the Islington registrar, Lillian Ladele that refusedto execute civil partnerships due to her spiritual convictions(Shariatmadari 1). It was ruled out that the need to have regardtowards the freedom of equality surpassed religious freedom. Adifferent illustration is that of a previous British Airwaysworker whose employers required her to hide a cross pendant beneathher uniform (Shariatmadari 1). Courts are impeding with the practiceof religious freedom through their endeavor to validate the nature ofreligious loyalty for themselves. For instance, deciding if anemployee should expose their cross while wearing uniform, the courtspresume that it is not an important religious practice, which is adecision that the court should not decide. An individual choosing towear a cross is a personal decision deriving from their religionbelief, which should not be interfered with as all persons enjoyreligious freedom.
Another group of individuals who do not enjoy the freedom ofchoosing to believe in a certain faith is Muslims. The events afterSeptember 11 have greatly shaped how many Americans view personsassociated with Islam. It is alleged that the attacks wereperpetrated by persons from the Islamic religion, which resulted indiscrimination towards persons that are Muslim. It is especiallyworse for persons that dress as the faith mandates. It is common forpeople to scare and harbor stereotypes towards Muslims. As a result,American Muslims do not practice their religion freely. They oftenhave to deal with persons that stereotypically refer to them asterrorists. There are even people who fear persons that are Muslims.Any time people here that a terror attack has happened, the firstculprits are normally individuals of the Islamic faith. The outcomeis that most Muslims are not free to follow their religion especiallyin countries where most of the civilians are of a different faith.
The personal freedom of religion matters because it is important toallow all persons to enjoy their freedom of worship. Religiousfreedom is part of a flourishing society because religion is veryimportant in shaping people’s lives. It acts as the foundation ofAmerica. The religious freedom wisely created by Madison anddifferent US founders is key to the success of the nation. It isnecessary to America’s progressive search for the ideals includedwithin the Declaration of Independence, peace andinternational stability. The US founders declared that the good valuegained from religion is essential to continued good governance. Thegovernment is responsible for ensuring that all its civilians enjoyreligious freedom without discrimination because of faith, orstereotypes held about a specific faith. Every member of the Americansociety deserves to be treated equally and with respect despite hisor her religion of choice. Religion greatly influences itsfollowers, and is associated with violence, which emerges whenpersons feel the need to defend their beliefs. To avoid suchviolence, it is necessary to ensure religious freedom within society.For instance, if the courts progress to show minimal disregard forreligious freedoms when making verdicts, the outcome could beunending confrontation amid religious groups and courts due toendeavors to defend beliefs. People that feel they are discriminatedbecause of their religion may react violently as a way for fightingfor their freedom.
I think that religious freedom, similar to other freedoms ought tobe ensured in society. The government has the responsibility ofensuring that civilians have the freedom to practice their religionwithout fear of discrimination or unfair prosecution. Religion isimportant in defining who people are. It is through religion thatbeliefs are shaped and persons grow with ideals. Religious freedomsneed to matter to others because it teaches people how to livetogether despite our differences. It also makes certain thatindividuals are capable to respect others and accept that we cannotall have the similar beliefs.
Shariatmadari, David. Religious freedom under threat from courts,professor warns. The Guardian, Jan. 2012. Web. Mar. 2015. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/jan/25/religious-freedom-courts-threat-trigg