ICC Note: Following a letter of complaint from the Freedom From Religion Foundation, a sheriff’s office in Louisiana has been forced to remove Christian posts from the office’s public Facebook page. The group asserted that the posts served as a violation of the US constitution’s Establishment Clause by favoring Christianity over other belief systems. The sheriff noted that this decision was made reluctantly and was only done to prevent an expensive legal battle.
By Samuel Smith
01/13/2018 United States (Christian Post) – A Louisiana sheriff’s office has removed Christian-themed posts that cited biblical passages from its Facebook page after it received a complaint from one of the United States’ most prominent atheist legal organizations.
The Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office has removed posts that shared scripture and promoted Christian content after it was pressured to do so by the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation, an organization that advocates for a strict separation of church and state, last summer.
FFRF staff attorney Andrew Seidel sent a letter to Sheriff Randy Seal last June that complained about how Seal was quoting Scripture in his official statements and how the office’s public Facebook page was promoting Christianity and posting Bible verses.
The FFRF is known for sending letters to school districts and local government offices warning that they might be sued if Christianity or Judaism are perceived as being advocated by administrators, faculty or city officials.
According to the letter, a concerned local resident contacted FFRF about the issue. The letter details a number of instances in which Seal or his office have shared scripture or promoted Christianity through social media.
Last June, the cover photo for sheriff’s office Facebook page stated, “Lord when I sit in the chair of leadership, please do not let it be said that the chair is still empty.”
The letter also complained about an Easter 2017 Facebook post from the office’s account that read, “Around the world today Christians unite to celebrate the sacrifice and resurrection of our Savior Jesus.”