Salt & Light Global’s Strategic Response to the Supreme Court’s Ruling Threatening Freedom of Speech and Religious Conscience


Prof. William Wagner

WFFC Distinguished Chair for Faith & Freedom at SAU

In a recent U.S. Supreme Court case, five lawyers wearing robes operated outside the rule of law to create a new purported Constitutional right to “personal identity.” By design, this decision destroyed the Biblical concepts of marriage and family. It ominously also laid legal foundations for extinguishing First Amendment freedoms of speech and religion. The Church must immediately try to reverse the course these unelected judges set for our nation – or face a century or more of certain persecution. Time is of the essence as those supporting the Court’s agenda are moving quickly to implement its ruling.

Salt & Light Global’s proposed response to the Supreme Court’s ruling includes a strategic combination of constitutional statesmanship, civil rights litigation, protective legal counseling, active Christian citizenship, and prayer. Here is a summary of a few key elements of the strategy.

Petitioning Congress to use its power under the Constitution to respond to the Court’s illegitimate use of    judicial power

Several provisions of the Constitution provide the American people and their elected representatives with remedies for judicial overreach. Here are some Constitutional statesmanship options available at the federal level:

  • Under Article V of the Constitution, the American people can amend the Constitution to explicitly remove the new fundamental right added by the Court’s ruling.
  • Under Article III of the Constitution, “the Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions, and under such regulations as the Congress shall make.” Thus, the American people’s representatives (Congress) can strip the Court of appellate jurisdiction to decide any matter related to the new “right” they created.
  • Under Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, Congress can use the Spending Power to restrict funding to the Court or to prohibit any spending to enforce this new “right.”
  • Under Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution, the House of Representatives can exercise its power to impeach Supreme Court Justices. Under Article I, Section 3 of the Constitution, the Senate can then hold a trial and remove these Justices from the Supreme Court.

Petitioning State Governors and Attorneys General to not enforce the Court’s ruling

The dissenting Justices eloquently explained how the majority lacked any constitutional authority to act in the way it did – and that its ruling is therefore illegitimate.

State governors and State Attorneys General should not treat an illegitimate ruling entered without constitutional authority as a proper rule of law. Moreover, to do so in this case surrenders the sovereignty of the State to five unelected judges imposing their own personal political agenda. Here these justices, politically accountable to no one, replaced, for example, Michigan’s Constitutional policy, enacted by the people of Michigan, with their own personal policy preferences. State Governors and Attorneys General should, therefore, refuse to recognize the Court’s majority opinion as the rule of law. And, because it is not the rule of law, it should not be enforced. For example, when the Supreme Court used its power to say African-Americans were not persons protected by the Constitution, the State of Wisconsin refused to enforce the Court’s ruling, properly treating it as illegitimate. 

Undermining the impact of the Supreme Court’s ruling through civil rights litigation 

The Supreme Court’s ruling created a new purported Constitutional right of personal identity. While some individuals find their identity in their sexuality and sexual preferences, others find their identity in their religion (e.g., in Jesus Christ). Tactical litigation utilizing this truth may provide a conservative court with a new way to rule anti-Christian discrimination statutes unconstitutional.

Protecting the Church and Christian ministries through pro-active legal counsel

To inoculate against inevitable lawsuits stemming from the Court’s same sex marriage ruling, churches and ministries need counsel on how to draft statements of faith and policies concerning church membership, marriage, employment, facility use, etc. This guidance to churches and ministries offers a level of protection against abuses of government power and other forms of persecution.

Preparing the Church for the proper Christian response to persecution; equipping the faithful with the Biblical approach to peaceful civil disobedience

To prepare the Church for the proper Christian response to persecution, we must equip the faithful with a Biblical approach to peaceful civil disobedience. When government commands us to do what God commands us not to do, or government commands us not to do what God commands us to do, we must follow God’s command – and we must do so in ways consistent with scripture. We execute this portion of the strategy through conferences, seminars, social and other media (e.g., hopefully a national radio program), and role modeling.

Collaborating with ministries, churches, businesses, professional associations and academic institutions

Increasing legitimacy and impact on this project, Salt & Light Global collaborates with key ministries, churches, businesses, professional associations, and academic institutions. For example, in presenting our arguments to the U.S. Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court, we spoke for over 25,000 African American churches and ministries. Will you join us?

About the Author

Prof. William Wagner
WFFC Distinguished Chair for Faith & Freedom at SAU
Professor Wagner holds the WFFC Distinguished Chair for Faith & Freedom at Spring Arbor University. He has a special interest in building and preserving environments where Christians may share the Good News of Jesus, free from persecution and oppression.

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