Archive for Thursday, May 6, 2004

Religious influence

May 6, 2004

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To the editor:

I can't believe that, throughout this great nation, states are considering institutionalized discrimination by adopting amendments to their constitutions regarding gay marriage. Our own state came close to approving a prohibition of gay unions, both religious and civil, a move that would deny the rights of thousands of residents to establish family units that insure legal continuity and financial support to family members.

Large, powerful religious interests blatantly lobby lawmakers, shamelessly pressuring them to turn their religious beliefs into law. Our daily newspapers bear letters and articles that preach and proselytize on the virtues of "one man, one woman" unions and protecting the "sanctity of marriage" against "unholy unions."

There are many things wrong with this escalating trend, not the least of which is the creation of another type of "unholy" union: the church-state. It seems irrelevant to those supporting the constitutional assault on gay residents that this country was founded on religious freedom. That means ALL religions, including the biggies, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and Judaism, but also every form of agnosticism and atheism, as long as no harm is done to others.

But, then, that's the justifying argument: Homosexual unions harm society and traditional marriage. Where is the proof? Are we sheep or thinking human beings?

While church members and religious leaders are within their rights to interpret the Bible to accept or condemn nontraditional marriages, elected officials do not have the right to invoke biblical interpretations in performing government duties, especially when writing (discriminatory and exclusive) laws.

Sharon Dewey,

Lawrence

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