Hundreds Rally for Chief Fired for His Faith
TUPELO, Miss.—This week, hundreds of Americans and American Family Association (AFA, www.afa.net) friends and supporters rallied at Georgia’s state capitol building to stand for former Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran, who was fired from his job at the start of 2015 for his religious views on marriage and homosexuality.
After serving a one-month suspension without pay in November for writing a book for his men’s Bible study that called sex outside marriage (including homosexuality) sinful, Chief Cochran faced the wrath of homosexual activists and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, and was publicly chastised, ordered to undergo sensitivity training and summarily fired from his position.
In support of Chief Cochran, 13 speakers took to the podium Tuesday in Atlanta for the “Stand for Religious Freedom Rally,” which can be viewed in its entirety on YouTube.
“A Christian brother is facing anti-Christian bigotry at its worst,” said AFA Executive Vice President Buddy Smith. “The mayor and a councilman have shown their intolerance and hatred toward a person of faith, and have proven they are willing to take revenge against anyone who doesn’t embrace the pro-homosexual lifestyle and agenda. Such targeted anti-Christian discrimination has no place in Atlanta and no place in the United States of America.”
The City of Atlanta’s Charter and Code of Ordinances prohibits discrimination based on multiple factors, including creed and religion. But that didn’t stop the mayor from violating the ordinance and firing Cochran for his faith.
Cochran told Fox News, “The LGBT members of our community have a right to be able to express their views and convictions about sexuality and deserve to be respected for their position without hate or discrimination. But Christians also have a right to express our belief regarding our faith and be respected for our position without hate and without discrimination. In the United States, no one should be vilified, hated or discriminated against for expressing their beliefs.”
AFA suggested the following ways to support Cochran:
- Sign AFA’s Statement of Support that will be delivered to Chief Cochran. (As of Thursday morning, nearly 53,000 have signed the statement.)
- Call Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed at (404) 330-6100.
- Connect with the Mayor on social media via Facebook, Twitter or the “Meet the Mayor” page of the City of Atlanta web site.
- Email Mayor Reed at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The fact that Cochran was fired this month—and so many others are battling for their religious freedom—is ironic, as tomorrow, January 16, is Religious Freedom Day, as declared each year by the President.