Home » News » National Archives apologizes for trying to restrict pro-life messages

By Dennis Hetzel, published on February 28, 2023

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Traffic passes by the National Archives building on April 26, 2019, in Washington, D.C. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

The National Archives Museum in Washington, D.C., has admitted that staff security officers were wrong when they told visitors wearing pro-life messaging on their clothes to cover up or leave the building last month, according to an article in The Catholic Telegraph.


Although administrators have reportedly signed a legal agreement to prevent such an incident from happening again and issued an apology, the controversy isn’t over. There still is a lawsuit pending claiming that the museum violated the visitors’ First and Fifth Amendment civil rights. It could be settled through mediation.


According to the Telegraph:


“In signing a “consent decree,” the National Archives agreed to make clear that visitors are free to express their religious and political beliefs at the museum, which is home to original copies of the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence.


“‘The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) represents that its policy expressly allows all visitors to wear T-shirts, hats, buttons, etc., that display protest language, including religious and political speech,’ the agreement reads.


“NARA also promised to communicate this policy ‘to all NARA security officers who interact with the public at every NARA facility, including the National Archives.’”


The students were in Washington to take part in the March for Life. Reportedly, students were told to remove pro-life buttons and that their messaging could incite others. The American Center for Law and Justice represents the students and chaperones in the lawsuit.




Abortion Protests | The First Amendment Encyclopedia (mtsu.edu)


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