Professor Gary B. Doxey addressed the J. Reuben Clark Law Society as the keynote speaker for the annual JRCLS leadership conference at Aspen Grove on 29 September 2011. Professor Doxey, Associate Director for the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University, invited listeners to consider the decay of religious freedom throughout the world and issued a call to action to be active in seeking religious freedom for all peoples.
“We are too often passive or reactive in our fight against religious freedom,” Professor Doxey said. “Almost no one can get their arms around why or what it all means beyond simply worshiping as they please.”
Professor Doxey noted that since 1990, religious freedom has been “forced off the constitutional pedestal and into the political process,” calling for a return to the time-honored tradition of being dynamic and dedicated defenders of the law.
“We also have to defend the structures and institutions,” Professor Doxey said. “We need allies in this fight.”
Following Professor Doxey’s address, Professor W. Cole Durham and William F. Atkin joined him for a question and answer session. In response to a question of how lawyers can be involved in religious freedom cases, Professor Durham urged attendees to be involved in their own communities, whether they are cases relating to their own particular faith or not.
“[Professor Doxey] talked about the political process and that this is where we can make the biggest difference,” said Heather Pack, a student at the S.J. Quinney College of Law at University of Utah. “I never thought about it that way.”