Fire chief terminated for Christian view of marriage; hires attorney to vindicate right to free speech

It started with bakers and wedding photographers but now almost no one can publicly support a Christian view of marriage.

Kelvin Cochran was removed from his position of Atlanta Fire Chief Tuesday for expressing his belief that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Cochran is now being defended by the Alliance Defending Freedom, Reuters reported.

“The city nonetheless fired him for nothing other than his Christian faith,” the Alliance said. “ADF and Chief Cochran are currently assessing the legal options available to vindicate his right to free speech.”

Kelvin Cochran
Photo credit Fox 5 Atlanta via Fox News.

Cochran wrote a book in 2013 titled “Who Told You That You Were Naked?,”according to Reuters, where he made inflammatory remarks on homosexuality, calling it “vulgar” among other things.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said that Cochran wasn’t fired for his religious beliefs but because his published views could be a liability for the city that has a policy forbidding discrimination.

The mayor, and other elected officials didn’t seem to think crushing Cochran’s right to free speech was discrimination.

“When you’re a city employee, and [your] thoughts, beliefs and opinions are different from the city’s, you have to check them at the door,” Councilman Alex Wan said.

Really? Obtaining a city job means you lose the First Amendment?

“I want to be clear that the material in Chief Cochran’s book is not representative of my personal beliefs,” Mayor Reed said.

That’s fine mayor. You have the free speech to make that statement. Why doesn’t Chief Cochran?

“This happened to me, but it’s really not about me,” the former fire chief said. “It’s a warning to every American that freedom of speech and freedom of religion are hanging by a thread, which will snap if we don’t fight to preserve these cherished protections.”

A petition has been started to support Chief Cochran which you can view here.


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