We Believe in Net Neutrality

A free and open Internet is critical for the people of faith. No matter the faith tradition -- be it Evangelical, Protestant, Muslim, Jewish, Catholic, Sikh or Buddhist -- each of us relies on the open Internet to build community, express love for the divine, and stand with others for justice. Most faith institutions do not have the money to compete with corporate commercial media: the repeal of net neutrality protections will put faithful and religious content on the margins of the Internet by granting a preference for those who can pay. 


And while the proceeding starting today is focused on net neutrality, its legal implications extend far beyond those rules. Low income access to affordable internet is just one of the policies that could be jeopardized by this proceeding. 


Today's vote is a disappointment for anyone who seeks to lift up her voice online in support of the beloved community.

Racism, Threats Have no Place in Policy Debates

At a time of robust policy debates, it is important that the public weigh in on proposals that are central to their lives--from health care to net neutrality to environmental protections that safeguard health. Recent reports and social media have noted several racist and threatening filings directed against Federal Communications Commission against Chairman Ajit Pai.  The United Church of Christ's media justice ministry condemns any racial epithets or personal threats, and encourages commenters to engage with civility.  As the UCC's civility pledge states, "insulting, attacking or demonizing people with whom we disagree is unproductive and unacceptable."  We urge any agencies that experience this rhetoric, including the Federal Communications Commission, to focus on the substantive debate and to keep public comments open so they do not reward hateful behavior.