In Louisiana, the U. S. Department of Justice, under Eric Holder, has informed a local sheriff that he must prohibit the local chapter of the Young Marines and Youth Diversion programs from participating in voluntary prayer and must excise the word "God" from the oath taken by program members. The sheriff says that because he refused to submit to the DOJ demands he has lost a $30,000 grant for the programs.
In response, The Liberty Institute has sent a demand letter to the
DOJ Civil Rights Division and the Louisiana
Commission on Law Enforcement (LCLE) about their decision to
deny funds for programs.
The DOJ action was triggered when a March DOJ audit of the program noted their “special emphasis
on the love of God and fidelity to our country.”
The letter states that the DOJ’s denial of funds to the youth programs
violates the First Amendment’s Free Exercise Clause because it constitutes
unlawful viewpoint discrimination. It demands that the programs' grant application be approved without delay or