Originally published in July 2015.
Kelvin Cochran, a former fire chief in Atlanta, Georgia, wrote a book in which he criticized homosexuality and other sins. Mayor Kasim Reed suspended him, then fired him for what he claimed was insubordination. The mayor said Cochran handed out copies of his book at work without government permission, which supposedly was against the rules.
Although Cochran said he did obtain permission from a city official to publish a book in his private capacity, the Alliance Defending Freedom, Cochran’s counsel, said the requirement is unconstitutional.
It would take willful blindness to see the Cochran case as anything other than a religious freedom issue.
Will Cochran be reinstated? He definitely wants his job back, as the Daily Signal reported.
“My profession for 34 years was to be willing to die for anyone under any condition where I could possibly save a life, and I am still committed to doing that today,” Cochran said. “There’s no hatred. Love is the foundation of the Christian faith and I have lived that out in my profession for 34 years….In the United States of America, we are guaranteed the freedom to live without fear of being terminated or experiencing any adverse action for the free expression of our beliefs and thoughts. It was an injustice against me on that basis.”
The Daily Signal asked Cochran about handing out the book at work. He said he’d given copies to fellow believers, and others had asked for copies.