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Trump declared Jan.16, 2018 as 'Religious Freedom Day'

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Wikimedia Commons

On Tuesday morning President Donald Trump declared January 16, 2018, as Religious Freedom Day. This proclamation was in celebration of the 232nd anniversary of the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom.

The proclamation at its surface appeared to be a celebration of American religious diversity and all their beliefs, but upon further reading, it took on a deeper political and more evangelical tone.

"Unfortunately, not all have recognized the importance of religious freedom, whether by threatening tax consequences for particular forms of religious speech or forcing people to comply with laws that violate their core religious beliefs without sufficient justification," Trump pens in the proclamation. "These incursions, little by little, can destroy the fundamental freedom underlying our democracy."

These statements seem to be alluding to the Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission case of which the Supreme Court has yet to give a verdict on whether a baker can deny service to LGBT customers based on his free speech and religious conscience.

That case and those like it are referenced as a part of the decree further on. 

"No American — whether a nun, nurse, baker, or business owner — should be forced to choose between the tenets of faith or adherence to the law,” it reads.

Those who had an issue with the proclamation quickly took to social media to Social media criticize it: 

"By proclamation, Trump declares today Religious Freedom Day to "celebrate the many faiths that make up our country." It comes after Trump first signed an EO, last January, halting all refugee admissions & temporarily barring people from 7 Muslim-majority countries." - Peter Alexander, Twitter. 

"This is the same president who called for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States, and then issued multiple versions of a Muslim ban." - ACLU, Twitter

"Christians: Hooray! We've been protected from business discrimination since the Civil Rights Act of 1964! Gay Americans: Hey, can we get in on that? Christians: YOU WANT SPECIAL RIGHTS!!!" - JoeMyGod, Twitter.