Catholic League President William Donohue attended President Clinton’s speech in the White House today on religious liberty in the federal workplace. While much of what the President said was appreciated by the Catholic League, the fact that there was no Catholic representation in the coalition that drafted the President’s directive is disconcerting.
Donohue issued the following remarks today:
“Overall, the President’s executive order on the rights of religious expression in the federal workplace is a welcome clarification of existing law. Regrettably, no Catholic was invited to participate in the drafting of this statement. What makes this even worse, is that since May, the White House has had no official appointed liaison to the Catholic community. Together, these two factors suggest that the voice of Catholics is not important for the White House to hear. This is mind-boggling given the fact that one in every four Americans is Catholic.
“If there is one area that the federal guidelines did not address, it is the right of Christians to have the identical rights that the Jewish community presently enjoys with regard to religious expression in U. S. post offices. To be specific, menorahs are erected every year in post offices across the country, yet no post office is permitted to display a crèche. This is troubling given the fact that the U. S. Supreme Court has declared menorahs to be every bit as religious as nativity scenes are. Therefore, while this executive order is appreciated, there is still room for much needed improvement.”