MADISON, Wisc. — A prominent atheist activist group is demanding that Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker remove a Scripture from his Twitter and Facebook accounts, alleging that they imply the government promotion of religion.
The Madison-based Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) sent a letter to Walker this week after becoming aware that he had simply posted “Philippians 4:13” as his status on his social media accounts on Sunday. The Scripture reads, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
“This braggadocio verse coming from a public official is rather disturbing,” FFRF wrote in the letter. “To say, ‘I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me,’ seems more like a threat, or the utterance of a theocratic dictator, than of a duly elected civil servant.”
It demanded that the governor delete the post, contending that it is unlawful for Walker to endorse religion on his official social media pages.
“On behalf of our membership, we ask you to immediately delete this religious message from your official gubernatorial Facebook and Twitter,” the letter stated. “May we hear from you at your earliest convenience?”
“The question is will Walker be able to get away with it?” FFRF wrote in a press release announcing its correspondence to Walker. “If so, what might he post next, maybe something from Acts 10 (in which a sheet descends from above, with a voice saying, ‘Rise, Peter; kill, and eat’)? More sustenance and strength for the religious and exclusion for non-Christians.”
Walker has not responded to the letter, and it not known whether he plans on doing so. The Scripture remains posted on both his Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Public reaction to the matter has been mixed.
“There is nothing wrong with finding strength in Jesus if that’s your thing,” one commenter wrote, “but posting about it it on an official state account is insensitive to citizens of other faiths and, frankly, unprofessional. It’s also kind of obnoxious.”
“Observe history: The Constitution was designed and authored by men who were over 90% Christians in believing in the Judaeo/Christian God!” another stated. “Nearly every one of the signers of the Constitution were Bible teachers in classrooms or preachers in local churches.”
“George Washington, the first president, … required the Bible be a standard book to be taught in all children’s classrooms!” they continued. “Most of the early colonial schools at the time were in churches, and even after colleges were established they all were based on [Biblical] standards of education!”
“I hope that today, the governor Tweets another Bible verse,” a third commenter opined. “In fact, I hope he does it every single day as a new agenda. Then I hope other officials begin doing it. We need to fight back and blatantly.”