The secret organizations revoking your rights

Carley Martin, Contributor

Many people probably have not heard of The Alliance Defending Freedom or The Heritage Foundation. That is because they do not want you to. The Alliance Defending Freedom is a legal organization established in 1994 by 35 Christian leaders. They claim to protect freedom, free speech, marriage and family, parental rights and the sanctity of life. Since its inception, the Alliance Defending Freedom has taken many cases to the Supreme Court and won. Recently, the organization assisted Mississippi in drafting the Gestational Age Act and served on the legal team that went in front of the Supreme Court. They ultimately won the case, prohibiting abortion after fifteen weeks except in special circumstances. 

The Heritage Foundation was established in 1973 with the mission to “formulate and promote public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values and a strong national defense.” Like the Alliance Defending Freedom, The Heritage Foundation has also been successful in its attempts to make its policies law. During President Ronald Reagan’s Administration, the Heritage Foundation came up with 2,000 potential policies, two-thirds of which were implemented. 

There have been many bills passed in the past few months that many people believe are infringements on their rights. Both organizations have been instrumental in signing these bills into law. Many of these bills target transgender people, barring them from receiving gender-affirming care, preventing them from using the bathroom of the gender they identify with and prohibiting them from participating in sports. Christian conservatives have been advocating for these bills through organizations such as the Alliance Defending Freedom and the Heritage Foundation. While there is no proof, it is widely believed that these bills have been modeled after templates made by these organizations. This is because these bills have very similar language despite being from different states. 

On May 13, 2021, the news site Mother Jones shared a leaked video from a private Heritage Action Meeting. Heritage Action is the sister organization of The Heritage Foundation. In the video, Jessica Anderson, the executive director of the sister organization, said, “In some cases, we actually draft them for [representatives] or we have a sentinel on our behalf give them the model legislation so it has the grassroots, from the bottom type up kind of vibe.” Anderson is referring to the “voter suppression law” in Georgia and also claims that they have also been doing this for other bills for Republicans throughout America. Since this video was leaked, more people have found out about these types of organizations and have spoken out against them. Finally, these biased organizations are getting the criticism they deserve. 

While the Alliance Defending Freedom claims to represent people of all religions, the bills that they are advocating for do not represent the beliefs and values of all religions. For example, in Judaism, it is part of their religion that a fetus is not considered a person until they are born and that women should be able to have abortions if needed. 

Bills banning abortions are infringing directly upon their religious freedom. These bills are unconstitutional and infringe on people’s First Amendment rights. Everyone should have the right to medical care and to express themselves freely, no matter what religion they identify with.