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Pleading for religious tolerance

Monday, September 6, 2010

To the Editor:

We (Americans all) need to reacquaint ourselves with our own Constitution, which guarantees freedom of religion.

This freedom must be exercised on behalf of everyone, regardless of their particular denominational preference.

Unfortunately, some Americans believe that the U.S. is a "Christian Nation," and interpret this phrase to mean "Christians Only."

That's not what the Constitution says and that's not what the Constitution means.

Muslims, Protestants, Jews, Mormons, Unitarians and many who do not profess any "organized" religion all include defenders of freedom and the right to hold individual, personal, religious beliefs without interference from others.

None of us can claim that those from our respective religious "homes" are above reproach.

All of us know proponents of our own and other religions who hold some beliefs that we do not share.

The examples of Protestants, Muslims, Catholics, Jews and other religious people who have killed other people they hate are plentiful.

We can't pretend that religious belief keeps individuals from doing terrible things in the name of their faith(s).

The proposed mosque in New York City is a great test of our values as Americans and freedom-lovers.

Mayor (Michael) Bloomberg is standing up for religious freedom and we should all stand with him.

Sincerely,

Barbara Norman,

Terre Haute