Letters Wednesday - 3-20-13
Beware of tyranny of the majority
The statements of Mr. Richard Roberts in his Tuesday letter and the quotes attributed to Commissioner Sides in the news article reporting the decision of the county commission to defend the prayer lawsuit serve, however unintentionally, to prove the very point of the plaintiffs in the suit. Contrary to the assertions of both, the establishment clause of the First Amendment has never been interpreted by the courts to empower the majority.
In point of fact, the framers of the Bill of Rights were particularly concerned with the protection of the minority from the tyranny of the majority. When the courts are asked to review cases under the establishment clause, the primary objective is to assure that every citizen, whatever his or her faith or lack thereof, can petition any governmental body and receive equal protection of the law. The position taken by the commissioners certainly calls this proposition into question, if only by appearance.
It would be extraordinarily refreshing as well as inspirational if our elected officials would set an example by following the rule of law even if they wish it were otherwise.
— Gary C. Rhodes
Stand for love
Oh my Christian brothers and sisters... While it is good to have strong convictions, remember, even when you are standing up for what you hold as truth you need to do so with love!
We are told in Colossians 4 to be wise in the way in which we act towards outsiders and for our conversation to be full of grace. Concerning the county prayer issue, the way many have acted towards “opponents,” or members of the media (many of whom love Jesus) has not been in accordance with this scripture.
If you feel I am taking a verse out of context, read the whole chapter, it supports this. Also check out 1 Peter 3 which tells us to be “compassionate and humble” (verse 8) and to answer others with “gentleness and respect” (verse 16).
Do I believe that we as Christians need to be quiet and not stand up for our faith? No. However, when attacked, there is a command to first turn the other cheek. Our first response should not be to attack back.
In fact, following that example, we need to love others with the kind of love Jesus lived. I believe that we need to live wide open and full blast, sharing the love of Jesus.
Are we to have convictions? Yes, I am very conservative. But how we share those convictions and our faith can be the difference in someone else falling in love with the one who loves me more than I can even imagine and someone feeling that we are hateful, mean and living in opposition to the life/teachings of the Savior of the world.
I usually feel that believers should refrain from discussing “family business” (the family of faith) in secular venues. However, after recent actions, I could not remain silent.
— Brian Farmer
Well, once more it seems that our freedom to express our religious convictions as guaranteed in the Constitution are being challenged by, of all things, a religious group.
Mr. Voelker along with Ms. Montag-Siegel and Ms. Lund have taken a stand for their religious organization in opposition to all other recognized religions.
Wait, you think non sectarianism is not a religion? Well, let’s see. They seem to have no problem with prayer, which indicates a belief in a Personal Higher Power because, after all, prayer to a non person is slightly ludicrous.
It seems to me that, from the statements in the Salisbury Post article of March 13, the problem comes from the fact that the people offering prayers are “elected.” What a horrible thought! People who are elected must give up the free exercise of their personal faith and now must adhere to the religion of non-sectarianism.
Why would anyone want to run for an office if they must give up the free exercise of their personal beliefs or must change to conform to the great unknowable god of non-sectarianism. Do we require our elected officials to attend an indoctrination into non-sectarianism before they can take office? If so, who is going to pay for this?
Which brings up another point — who is really paying for this law suit? I notice with much humility that Mr. Voelker, Ms. Montag-Seigel and Ms. Lund are only asking $1 plus the cost of the ACLU attorneys. I really wonder if the non-sectarian religious group who are so offended by the expression of a personally held religious belief would have undertaken this lawsuit if they were actually putting their own money on the line.
Personally, I think their use of the ACLU to push their religious agenda on the rest of us is reprehensible!
— Bob Houck
Editor’s note: The ACLU gets most of its funding from member contributions, bequests, grants and contributions.
Continue to fight
I want to commend the Rowan County Commissioners for having the moral courage to stand up to the ACLU and the other left wing wackos who think that Christian principles that this nation was founded on should be abolished.
How can we be called Christians if we take away the name of Christ?
I hope the commissioners will keep up the fight. I understand the pastor at Cornerstone Church is willing to consider donating a large sum of money to the commission’s defense fund. I hope that they continue to fight and that other churches, whether in Rowan County or not, will contribute also, including mine.
Folks, if we are not willing to “Stand up for Jesus” except for inside the walls of the church, then we may just as well fold up our tents and find some other reason to meet on the weekends.
Our City Council in Kannapolis was not willing to spend money on attorney fees to fight the ACLU over the same issue, but they think that paying attorney fees to take away quiet enjoyment of the people in Odell is OK so that they can make something happen for their corporate friends.
— Al Duplisea
Questions to ponder
The county commissioners have made their position clear, and they have taken a stance on the issue of prayer at a county meetings. The issue is neither black or white, but contains many shades a gray. Rather than take a stance on this issue, I will ask the citizens of Rowan county to answer the following questions:
• Do we really want to draw a line in the sand on this issue?
• If we do not pray a Christian prayer at the beginning of the meetings, will our faith or responsibility to God suffer or be less than what it should be?
• Will this stance on the prayer issue win more people over to Christ?
• Do we represent the people of Rowan County by taking this stance, or do we represent the majority of the people of the county by taking this stance?
• Can we follow the path Jesus expects us to follow by taking another stance on this issue? If so, what would be that stance?
Answer the questions honestly, and the path we need to take will be shown to us.
— Gordon Correll
In God he trusts
I want to take sides with those who are against prayer at county meetings. I want to help them by relieving them of everything they own that has “God” on it. Just send your cash to me. I’m easy to find.
— Delmar McDaniel