In the day and age where everything is offensive to someone, it is difficult to dig your feet in and take a stand for your convictions. Being a politician makes any sort of religious stand even more difficult. For the better part of twenty-five years, Tony Perkins has lived in the spotlight and living with fingers pointed in his face about his Christian value system. Yet has remained unwavering throughout his career. Tony Perkins is fearless to speak out when anyone attempts to suppress the freedoms given to us by God and the Constitution.
Tony Perkins was born and raised in northern Oklahoma. He attended Liberty University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in science. He would later earn a master’s in public administration from LSU.
- Veteran, Police Officer – After college, Perkins enrolled in the United States Marine Corps. Upon completing his tour, he joined the Baton Rouge Police Department. He also served with the U.S State Department to train officers on a task force for anti-terrorism.
- Louisiana Legislature – In 1995, Perkins ran for and won a seat in the Louisiana State Legislature. He served two terms and retired from political office in 2013.
Having both military and political experience allows him in to be effective in the positions he now holds.
- Family Research Council – FRC is an educational organization whose aim is to provide research to the federal branches of government regarding policy decisions. They also educate the public about issues that affect the nation through a family-centered philosophy and biblical worldview. Perkins serves as president, a position he has held since 2003. He is effective due to his insight into governmental policy through his time serving on the Louisiana Legislature and Baton Rouge law enforcement.
- Washington Watch – This daily radio podcast consists of present American leaders discussing political and religious topics from a Biblical worldview. Tony Perkins hosts the program and along with other prominent political figures, address headline news from a scriptural perspective, tackling topics on the protection of life, marriage and family, and religious freedoms.
- United States Commission for International Religious Freedom (USCRIF) – This organization was created in 1998; its purpose is to monitor religious freedom issues on an international scale. They file reports and investigate violations. In 2018, Tony Perkins was appointed by President Donald Trump as one of the nine commissioners.
- Minister and Elder – Tony Perkins was given an honorary doctorate of Divinity from Liberty University. He is an ordained minister and serves as an elder in his home church, Greenwell Springs Baptist. He briefly served as interim pastor in 2016. His tenure was during a tumultuous time in his life. The 2016 Louisiana floods devastated Southern parts of Louisiana, leaving him and much of the area homeless. Thanks to organizations like Samaritan’s Purse, which were on the scene 72hrs after Perkin’s call to Franklin Graham, the area was quick to get much-needed aid.
Tony Perkins and Today’s Message
As with all political figures, Perkins career is not without controversy. From the stands he has taken to the words he has spoken; more than one group has taken offense. He receives it all and takes it in stride. He fully understands he is a target of ridicule – being a right-leaning politician is one thing but having a God-centered view of life places him in a whole other category.
One controversial issue he faces is the authoring and passing of the 1997 Covenant Marriage Law. The law states that a couple must go through premarital counseling before marriage, it also limits the reasons a divorce could be sought. It intends to help strengthen the marriage bond. The law is voluntary, but binding. Yet, many critics state that it forces religious views upon state power.
Tony Perkins continues with his busy schedule. After his second term in the Louisiana Legislature, he has remained active in supporting the protection of religious liberties. In addition to being the active president of the FRC, he is a frequent guest on television commentary programs, serves as a board member of religious-based organizations, and speaks at conferences like the International Culture Shapers Summit. Tony Perkins is also a regular contributor to the FRC Blog. Perkins lives in Louisiana with his wife, Lawana, and five children.