American DiversityFebruary 13, 2006
Here is an excellent column by Abraham Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League: Diversity of beliefs is American way that is in response to the Dover Intelligent Design and U.S. Air Force controversies. Here are a few highlights:
"As Americans, we all share the common right, so beautifully enshrined in the Constitution by our Founding Fathers, to practice our religion or to have no religion whatsoever."
"Despite this tradition, we are seeing efforts to break down the important wall separating church and state: in the courts, in the schools, in the halls of government and in the public square."
"Hardly a day goes by that some preacher or politician doesn't state that all he or she wants is to bring America back to the Founding Fathers' intent to build a Christian America."
"Groups on the Christian Right would coerce Americans to subscribe to a narrow perspective that would result in exclusion — practically and psychologically — for Jews, for other religious minorities, for non-believers and even for many Christians who choose to worship in their own fashion."
"We must continue to protect the separation of church and state."
"The wisdom of those who founded this nation has enabled diverse faiths to flourish and allowed a marvelous diversity to enrich our society. The values we should all share are not Christian values or Jewish values or Muslim values. They are American values."
Amen! We must be careful that in our zeal for God we do not drive people away by disrespecting their faith. If we believe that we have the Truth (and we do) then we should not be afraid of an open marketplace of ideas. We should give everyone the freedom to worship (or not) as they desire and then work very hard to communicate our beliefs and lead them to Jesus.