UPDATE: Lawsuit Filed – National Archives Joins Smithsonian in Kicking Out Pro-Life Kids – Where Next?


Jordan Sekulow

February 8

4 min read

Pro Life



This just got a whole lot bigger. Now a second federal agency has been implicated, engaging in unconstitutional discriminatory action against Christian students and other pro-lifers for wearing pro-life attire on the day of the March for Life.

We just filed a lawsuit against the Smithsonian, representing 9 students and 3 parents, who were unceremoniously booted from the federal museum for having “Pro-Life” on their hats – a clear violation of the First Amendment.

But now we’ve been contacted by and represent 4 other individuals who experienced the exact same type of anti-Christian, anti-life targeting – this time at the National Archives Museum.

That’s right, the same National Archives that has been infamously in the headlines because it can’t keep track of classified documents from multiple Administrations had time to single out pro-lifers for invidious and unconstitutional discrimination.

Just like the pro-life kids at the Smithsonian, three separate and unrelated groups of individuals were stopped by security at the National Archives, including a pro-life grandmother and her granddaughter. They were told to either take off or cover up pro-life attire, or they would be removed from the building. These individuals simply had shirts, buttons, sweatshirts, and hats expressing their support for the unborn or being part of the pro-life generation.

The federal institution that houses the sacrosanct pages of the Constitution was violating the Constitution, unlawfully targeting Christian and pro-life messages to be covered up and silenced.

It’s absolutely outrageous, and we just sent a legal demand to the National Archives Museum, putting them on notice of their constitutional violations and that a lawsuit will be headed their way shortly.

But this goes far beyond two museums. The targeted focus on excluding pro-life attire, the use of phrases like “neutral zone” by security officials, and the occurrence of these infractions at multiple federal buildings on the same day, the March for Life – there is something more at play here. In both of our lawsuits (against the Smithsonian and the impending one against the National Archives), we will find out if there was, in fact, any kind of memo, Be-on-the-Lookout (BOLO) list, training, or other directives that could have led to this unconstitutional targeting behavior.

Remember, the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups and conservatives began with a BOLO list. We went to court and obtained a consent order preventing the IRS from ever engaging in that type of unconstitutional targeting of conservatives for their beliefs. Well, it’s happening again, across President Biden’s bureaucracy. And we’re going back to federal court.

We’ve seen how President Biden has weaponized the FBI and DOJ to target pro-lifers, how HHS is bearing down on pro-life Pregnancy Resource Centers, and now this. We expect there may be more.

If you have been targeted or harassed in a federal building for your pro-life attire or expressing your pro-life views, we’re here to help, just like we’re helping these individuals who were targeted at the Smithsonian and the National Archives. Contact us at ACLJ.org/HELP.

The radical pro-abortion Left knows that if the youth of the nation say, “No more abortion,” their days are numbered. So they seek to intimidate, harass, suppress, demonize, marginalize, and even kick them out. We won’t stand for it.

We’ve been defending free speech rights for decades, winning monumental cases at the Supreme Court. We won’t back down. Stay tuned.

UPDATE 02.08.2023: We have just filed a lawsuit in federal district court over the National Archives Museum’s actions in unconstitutionally threatening and stifling the free speech of our clients, 4 pro-life individuals – including a mom and her daughter – on the afternoon of the March for Life. Similar to our lawsuit against the Smithsonian, we allege violations of the First Amendment (free speech), Fifth Amendment (equal protection), and Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). We also similarly asked the court to declare the National Archives’ actions unlawful and unconstitutional and order that they be prohibited from ever taking such action again. We will get to the bottom of this and achieve justice for our clients. No one should be targeted by the federal government for their Christian and pro-life views.