Acton Institute Powerblog

What Apple’s Encryption Fight Has to Do with Religious Freedom

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apple-icon-appleThe early church father Tertullian once asked, “What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?” by which he meant “What has Greek thought and philosophy to do with Christianity and its Biblical heritage?”

Today we might ask a similar question, “What has Apple to do with Hobby Lobby?” or “What does the conflict between Apple and the federal government over encryption have to do with Hobby Lobby’s struggle with the government over religious liberty?”

The answer is: More than you might think. As Chelsea Langston argues, the tech giant and the craft store share a defense of constitutional protections for institutions:

The continued media coverage of Apple’s case offers an opportunity for religious freedom advocates. Its example reminds us of the broad importance of protecting organizations—both secular and religious, for-profit and non-profit—from compulsion to act against their most foundational values. This comparison between the Apple case and the Hobby Lobby case is not exact, but the two are closer than we may realize.

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Joe Carter Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).

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