On April 27, 2020, Fr. Dcn. Andrew Bennett, Director of RFI’s North America Action Team, interviewed Dr. Brian Bird, at Princeton University, and welcomed him as a new RFI Research Fellow.
Asked about the value of religious freedom, Dr. Bird writes:
Religious freedom is a fundamental human right. It exists not through its inclusion in a bill of rights, but because of our innate yearning as human beings for answers about who we are and how we should live. At its heart, religious freedom enables the pursuit of the good and the truth. Though sincere and reasonable disagreements abound on these matters, we can all agree that they are worth pursuing. Their realization stands not only to enrich our lives as individuals, but to improve our common life together.
Full bio: Dr. Brian Bird is a 2019-2020 John and Daria Barry Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the James Madison Program at Princeton University. His research focuses on constitutional law, constitutional theory, and human rights. His writing on these topics has appeared in several academic journals and media outlets. A lawyer by training, Brian clerked for judges of the Supreme Court of British Columbia and for Justice Andromache Karakatsanis of the Supreme Court of Canada. He completed his doctorate in law at McGill University on the topic of freedom of conscience. He also holds a B.C.L. from the University of Oxford, a J.D. from the University of Victoria, and a B.A. from Simon Fraser University.
James Madison Program, Princeton University: https://jmp.princeton.edu/about/people/visiting.