The separation of church and state is one of the most controversial issues in American politics, one that often crosses party lines. In public school district in the south, the fight over religious freedom has continued.
At two public schools in Texas earlier this year, the Freedom of the Religion Foundation (FFRF) threatened to sue the local school district if religious plaques weren’t covered or removed. Sam Grover, the attorney for the FFRF, became aware of the plaques after complaints from local residents, which prompted him to contact the local school district. The Midlothian Independent School District took the threats seriously and preceded to cover the plaques. The local residents protested and had the plaques uncovered, with the FFRF now considering taking further legal action.
This issue was discussed on the October 22 edition of “Fox and Friends” on Fox News. In a segment titled “The Fight for Faith,” host Ainsley Earhardt welcomed Pastor Justin Coffman and Tiffany Davlin to the show, both local residents and parents of children who attend the schools. Coffman stated that the town was “all about wanting to see the cause of Christ go further,” before noting that he wants to see “Christ in more public arenas,” and that Christianity shouldn’t be taken away.
Davlin said that “now isn’t the time to remain silent” when it comes the actions of the FFRF, pointing out that the majority of the people in the area want the plaques to remain. Earhardt then chimed in, labeling the FFRF and their lawsuit as an “attack” against Christians, going through a list of other actions they have taken when a violation of church and state had occurred. Earhardt continued with a message to the FFRF, which she referred to as an “outside group,” telling them that they need to “understand the culture” of Christianity and religion, and for the sake of argument, get over it.
“Growing up in the South, people in Wisconsin, these atheists in other cities need to understand the culture in the South, and how church is a very integral part of our childhood and growing up, and it’s a very important part for the Southern culture.”
The two guests agreed, before Coffman noted that they were being bullied by the outside atheist group. Doubling down on her previous statements, Earhardt shook her head and labeled situation a “war on Christianity.”
This isn’t the first time that Fox News has promoted the idea of a “war on Christianity.” Every holiday season over the last few years, Fox News brings back the slogan “war on Christmas” and “war on Christianity,” in a possible attempt to cater to their viewing audience which is overwhelming older, white, and Christian. The FFRF has had hit or miss results in previous attempts to uphold the separation of church and state, including dealing with a religious statue at a high school in Georgia in September.