Kansas’s governor may have changed, but the commitment to religious liberty hasn’t! Sam Brownback’s successor is just as concerned about his state’s First Freedom as anyone — and last Friday, he proved it.
A few days after their neighbors in Oklahoma signed a similar bill into law, Governor Jeff Colyer (R) doubled the celebration, inking his name to the Adoption Protection Act. For Christians in the child welfare industry, it was a relief. For the last several years, the wave of anti-faith attacks on wedding vendors and pro-life employers started spilling over into the adoption and foster care industries. Increasingly, some liberals started demanding that organizations swallow their moral convictions and start placing children in homes that violated their faith. Seven states fought back with laws that give these social service groups the freedom to operate according to their beliefs. Now, thanks to Governor Mary Fallin (R-Okla.) and Colyer, two more have stepped in to protect organizations like Catholic Charities.
“What I want Kansans to know is this is about fairness and that we are protecting everyone,” Governor Colyer told reporters. “It’s not about discrimination, it’s about fairness. We’re looking after those kids that need a forever home.” His secretary of state, Kris Kobach, agreed. “Faith-based adoption agencies can continue the great work they do knowing they will always be able to operate in accordance with their faith in Kansas.”
As we’ve seen in the wedding vendor debate, there are plenty of adoption agencies in Kansas who are willing to serve same-sex, unmarried, or single parents. There’s absolutely no reason — except spite and intolerance — to force everyone else to chuck their beliefs as a condition of serving in the industry. For years, faith-based adoption and foster care ministries have helped take the burden off of the government’s overextended, finally-strapped social service agencies. They recruit parents, provide ongoing support for families, and even focus on at-risk and special needs kids.
This law guarantees that there’s an option for every parent. No one — not a ministry, employer, businessman, or nonprofit — should be punished for exercising the faith our Constitution protects!
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.