J. Matt Barber's Persecution over Christian Marriage
by Michael Westfall
There is no better recent illustration of the importance of this issue than the story of “American Worker”
J. Matt Barber. His dismissal from the Allstate Insurance Company for his opposition to same-sex marriage and his stand for
one-man, one-woman marriage is a true indicator of where America stands in the cultural war today.
Our culture has changed tremendously since my childhood
in small town Montrose, Michigan back in the 1950’s. Our towns back then were a much simpler place, not unlike Andy
Griffith’s Mayberry. Andy Griffith must have crafted TV’s Mayberry after the small towns of that era.
Fathers would sit down and talk with their kids like
Andy did with Opie. Kids had a moral compass because of the supporting culture of those times. To stand up for morality and
values was the right thing to do, and when you did your neighbors supported you.
Mayberry was really about the entire town and the lessons
learned from everyone. All of our small towns had characters similar to the excitable Barney Fife and down home Aunt Bea.
They just had different names.
Montrose, like Mayberry and most of the other TV family
shows of the era, was filled with patriotic folks that had a deep religious faith and would never relate nor tolerate the
profanity or anti-family content of today’s television. The families in Montrose 50 years ago consisted of a one-man,
one-woman marriage with kids. Yes, we don’t live in the 1950’s anymore, and America can no longer be defined as
an innocent place.
Our culture has become loud, profane, disrespectful and
in your face. In 2005, America now offers legalized on demand murder through abortion, living room pornography through our
televisions, violent and vulgar music and films through our radios and movies. On top of these developments we now face the
potential redefinition and destruction of the American family itself as powerful groups with help from big labor unions fight
for same-sex marriage. Our culture is seething with anti-family messages and attacks on those who take stands for values and
morality. J. Matt Barber and his family have become a symbol of this.
There are many of us that are completely fed up and are
fighting this darkness that is choking out our American culture.
America needs to wake up and smell the coffee. We need
to go back home again to the real definition of family and America.
J. Matt Barber
J. Matt Barber was a manager at Allstate’s Corporate
Security Division headquartered in Northbrook, Ill. On his own time, in his own home and without identifying himself as being
from Allstate, he wrote an article as a private citizen on his home computer. His article was put on a few websites. The piece
followed his Christian beliefs and was critical of same-sex marriage and read in part…
“Marriage between one man and one woman,
and the nuclear family have forever been the cornerstones of civilized society. Regrettably, there are at present, many within
the militant homosexual lobby who wish to take a sledge hammer to those cornerstones – many who hope to undermine both
the historical and contemporary reality of marriage and family- many who, through judicial fiat, aim to circumvent the constitution,
the legislative process and the overwhelming will of the people in an effort to redefine marriage”.
An outside pressure group unhappy with the content of
Mr. Barber’s article, complained to Allstate, and Allstate fired him saying that the article didn’t reflect the
Insurance Company’s values.
What has happened to free speech in America? Don’t
workers have the right to free speech? Has it flown out the window so ultra-liberal “so-called” politically correct
fringe pressure groups who hide in the darkness can pop out at will, squash and march in lockstep over the constitutional
rights of those they disagree with?
Has America turned into a nation where those that would
destroy the family itself have the political power to get our workers fired and create tremendous hardship for these working
Americans and their families?
Why do those who practice homosexuality have freedom
of speech and Christians who voice their convictions on their own time get fired? There is something mighty wrong here that
doesn’t pass the smell test.
Christianity is not something we only practice in Church.
As citizens our actions and deeds reflect our Christianity. That is what Matt was terminated for. It had nothing to do with
Allstate. Matt was a good worker. If anyone was to be terminated, it should be the people who were feeble minded enough to
fire Mr. Barber in the first place.
Allstate is not a slave master where workers sell their
Christian and ethical rights to work for them. Slavery died a long time ago.
What their workers do on their own time is none of Allstate’s
business, and there are several questions that can easily be generated. Is Allstate in the business of promoting an unhealthy
Being in the insurance industry doesn’t Allstate
have data, which shows that the homosexual lifestyle is a very unhealthy lifestyle with hefty healthcare costs? Why would
Allstate fire one of its good workers who advocated a healthy lifestyle?
Why is it that Allstate harasses, persecutes and
terminates their Christian workers for following their Christian ethics, values and moral beliefs on their own time, yet upholds
a different biased standard and in fact actively supports the agenda for those who practice homosexuality?
Why would Allstate want to alienate its Christian customers
with such Christian employee persecution when most of their customers are Christian? Why would any existing Christian customer
want to continue doing business with Allstate after viewing the terribly wrong way in which they are treating Mr. Barber and
As conservative Christians we know for certain where
God stands on life, marriage and homosexuality. Christians, like Mr. Barber and the church body itself, have the right and
responsibility to stand up for Biblical righteousness where and when we can. That is what Mr. Barber was doing with his article.
Over two hundred years ago in 1776 our deeply religious
ancestors stood in rebellion against Great Britain after coming here and founding the colonies, which became the United States
of America. At tremendous danger and sacrifice these people crossed the Atlantic in rickety little boats so they and their
descendants could freely practice their faith and belief in God and his word, the Bible. It is time for another rebellion
and revolution to take back our culture. We need a return to decency.
The Bible clearly states that the practice of homosexuality
is an abomination to God. This is God’s word and that will never change.
For the practice of homosexuality to be considered “normal”
in a Christian nation is an impossibility. It cannot happen. The only way that this practice could ever be considered acceptable
is to eliminate the influence of the Bible. To those who think your personal religious liberties are not being targeted Mr.
Barber is an example of why you are wrong.
Doesn’t Church mean a little more than ice cream
socials, fish dinners and social functions? Shouldn’t churches be held more accountable? While there are churches and
Christian based organizations like the AFA that have stepped up to the plate and are carrying the load, there are many other
churches that remain comatosely quiet on these moral issues. They let others do it for them and refuse to do their part. That’s
how anti-Biblical groups and issues garner power. That is how and why our culture has declined. These cultural changes were
not a force of nature. On the contrary, they did not have to occur. These groups had no power but came in like a lion because
of the “silence” of our church body.
The power they now wield is the power we freely gave
them. If we don’t reverse this cultural slide then the dark changes we have already seen will be but a down payment
on what is to come. It is just the beginning.
It is time for “all” of America’s churches
to crack open their Bibles and read what God’s word says about these issues. Then grow a backbone, join the fight and
reclaim our culture. Our nation can no longer afford us to bury our heads in the sand, ignore the issues and even worse…support
In too many cases today our underpaid and very dependent
pastors feel compelled to go lightly on issues like homosexuality and abortion because one of their liberal church members
might not like it and get their nose out of joint. Well let them get their nose out of joint! This attitude has created a
slippery downward domino effect where these issues are not properly discussed in the church. If the people don’t read
and understand their bibles on these issues, “and some don’t”, and then they see it accepted more and more
in our culture, “like they all do”, then it gets accepted more and more, “which it has.”
Church, get active and…SPEAK OUT! Don’t wait
until there is only one single church or Christian organization left speaking out on the moral issues. If you don’t
speak out now then you could very well be opening up a Christian persecution, the likes of which hasn’t been seen for
nearly 2000 years.
Our system is being poisoned and immorality is marching
on in lockstep. If thinking moral people refuse to address this issue then our nation, as we know it, will fall.
What does this mean for other Allstate Christian workers?
Does this mean that Allstate will now have a litmus test where Christians must recant their faith and beliefs at the hiring
table when they are hired? If Christian workers speak out, will they be terminated or was this termination exclusively for
J. Matt Barber to be used as an example? What has happened to Matt and his family is clearly a one sided biased position against
his Christian beliefs and the word of God? “Allstate owes J. Matt Barber more then the return of his job and lost salary
for the needless persecution and discrimination that he and his family have been forced to endure.”
When Allstate discriminates and quickly terminates one
of its employees because the worker follows the word of God, then Allstate is turning its back on a power much bigger and
greater then it they realizes.
I suggest that the leaders of Allstate and other business leaders as well who profess to be Christians
stop and think about who they are really turning their backs on. We must stop undermining and reversing our societies values
J. Matt Barber fearlessly took on this major societal
issue at tremendous personal sacrifice and did it for the defense of all our families. We owe him our support and we need
to stand with him.
There is an old union saying that today’s union
officials have “forgotten”. We used it many years ago relative to losing rights that you have. This old union
saying is fitting and applicable to J. Matt Barber and the Federal Marriage Amendment. The statement is
…“NEVER A STEP BACKWARDS”!
"The American Worker” is a series of papers developed by Michael Westfall around worker issues relative to the
moral decline in America over the last 50 years.
The American Worker
The opinions expressed in this column represent those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions, views,
or philosophy of TheRealityCheck.org, Inc.