The Obama administration’s Commission on Civil Rights has released a terrifying report that lays the groundwork for legal persecution of Christians in America.

The report, titled “Peaceful Coexistence: Reconciling Nondiscrimination Principles with Civil Liberties,” asserts that religious liberty and the free exercise of religion are in truth merely an excuse for bigots and racists to get away with discrimination.

“There’s a fairly significant effort to suppress or subordinate religious practices and religious beliefs in service of a broader agenda.”

“The phrases ‘religious liberty’ and ‘religious freedom’ … remain code words for discrimination, intolerance, racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, Christian supremacy or any form of intolerance,” Martin Castro, chairman of the commission, said in a statement included in the report.

“Today, as in the past, religion is being used as both a weapon and a shield by those seeking to deny others equality … This generation of Americans must stand up and speak out to ensure that religion never again be twisted to deny others the full promise of America,” Castro said.

However, the ones twisting anything in order to deny others the full promise of America are Castro and his leftist cronies on the commission who would subvert the First Amendment in pursuit of their ideological agenda.

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“The secular … side believes that the nondiscrimination principles should take precedence over religious liberty principles,” said Peter Kirsanow, a member of the commission and a dissenting voice in its conclusions.

Ironically, it was Kirsanow who first requested the commission address the issue. “I sought to see if a balance could be struck between the two principles and whether they could peacefully coexist,” Kirsanow said. “Unfortunately it’s pretty clear at least one side doesn’t think that they can,” he added.

The commission’s report risks providing pretense for stripping Americans of their right to freely exercise their religion. “This report will be used to inform government at every level … as to how to approach any kind of issues related to religious liberty and nondiscrimination,” Kirsanow said.

“If there’s a tension between the two [and] if the various governmental entities follow the commission they will subordinate religious liberty,” he said.

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“Statutes are subordinate to the Constitution,” said Kirsanow. “Nonetheless, if you look at the majority’s approach, they would sublimate constitutional principles to statutory principles of nondiscrimination.”

As Kirsanow noted, “It’s already happening.” In the last few decades, the country supposedly founded on the principle of freedom of religion has seen strong efforts from both federal and local governments to suppress freedom of religion. Indeed, a quick Google search produces volumes of examples in which religious freedom in America has been sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.

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In 2011, Catholic Charities of Illinois closed down rather than place foster children with single people or homosexual couples, as the state had ordered it to do. In 2014, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges threatened to rescind the accreditation of the evangelical Christian Gordon College for its policies on homosexuality and co-ed living.

In 2015, a Mississippi High School marching band was forbidden on threat of fine to perform a halftime show that featured a Christian hymn. This is of course to say nothing of the numerous Christians whose work revolves around the wedding industry — photographers, bakers, event venue managers — who have been fined or hauled in front of a judge for refusing to violate their deeply held religious beliefs.

“It’s already happening, but this gives greater impetus and more fodder to those who would make religious freedom secondary to principles of nondiscrimination,” Kirsanow warned.

“The slippery slope has turned into a cliff. You take the logical outcome of these things. We’ve seen the future already and it’s coming very rapidly. There’s a fairly significant effort to suppress or subordinate religious practices and religious beliefs in service of a broader agenda.”