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Comments about ‘LDS Church joins 'growing chorus' of faiths asking followers to defend religious liberty’

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Published: Sunday, Sept. 15 2013 4:45 p.m. MDT

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redshirt007
tranquility base, 00

Organized religion as a whole has done a great disservice to the world so far. They have taken tithes, offerings and time and have not solved even the most basic of human problems.Religious leaders have blessed tanks but never stood in front of them. Instead they have cultivated mistrust and bigotry throughout their history and a ready excuse for many crimes that have been committed to indigenous peoples all over the world.

It seems to me there has been an EXCESS of religious freedom that has trampled the lives and freedom of others for too long. It's time for religion to take it's rightful place and ONLY be in the hearts and caring hands of it's followers. But the shrink in power is painful I suppose.

The facts are the world is becoming less religious and more spiritual, more respectful of others and vastly safer than it ever was under religious political rule.

rusby
Minneapolis, MN

Hopefully, this chorus only grows, because we need to see that every action we undertake is related to our personal religion, be it theist or not. Religious liberty, and in particular public religious expression, is paramount to a successful society.

Henry Drummond
San Jose, CA

I can see from the graphic why this cause isn't catching on. Most of these are fairly vague or unsupported.

Linguist
Silver Spring, MD

I do not think religion or religions are in any danger in our great country. And as a person of faith, I would be among the first to stand up to defend it if it needed defending.

I remember growing up, Jewish, and learning early on that, while we were free to follow our faith, that did not mean that schools would close on our holidays or that we didn't have to put money in the parking meter on the Sabbath (when observant Jews are not to carry money on their persons).

The explanation was more complicated than the simple observation that our religion was in the minority. Rather, it was the recognition that laws, particularly those laws pertaining to the marketplace, ought to be religiously neutral: anyone can buy, anyone can sell, anyone can do business.

As a gay person, I cringe when I read about bakers or photographers demanding the right to kick out some customers because they don't approve of them. While the target in these recent cases happen to be gay couples, it is all too similar to laws restricted business on Sundays but not on Saturdays-- a double whammy for my family.

Ernest T. Bass
Bountiful, UT

I'm so grateful that my religious freedom is all about preventing others from having the same rights that I enjoy.

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT

The thing in this country that really protects religions from government is that 1st Amendment part of .....government shall make no law respecting religion.......... It's always referred to as the "seperation of church and state". If however, some court and ultimately the Supreme Court were to see it another way, (which is very possible depending upon the political makeup of said court) then that seperation could be gone, and religions would be subject to all kinds of federal law and taxes. Hope it doesn't ever happen, but with courts these days, anything is possible.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

The louder the religious get, the louder non-believers will get. Your belief in god gives you no more a privilege than does your belief in Santa Claus or fairies.

Blue
Salt Lake City, UT

This "vast coalition" will evaporate the moment the focus shifts away from what this coalition opposes and turns towards what they affirmatively believe.

It's no surprise really that a group of authoritarians object to the 21st Century. Organized religion has always been at war with civilization's inevitable progress in science, art, ethics, law, etc. As these areas advance it becomes increasingly difficult to defend the belief that religion deserves the privileges and immunities it claims for itself.

So, not surprisingly, when society finds it intolerable for sectarian organizations to intrude themselves into secular government, the authoritarians who are accustomed to unquestioning deference take offense.

I'd love to see a gathering of conservative Catholics, Mormons and Baptists get together and engage in an open discussion of what they _do_ believe in, instead of what they oppose. The educational and entertainment value would be priceless.

Crank
santaquin, UT

I wonder if my church takes this stance because they see Christians in general as well as other religion's regressive members oppressing other's free agency. Or, is it because they feel we are oppressed for not being allowed to exercise our unrighteous judgment on others?
This judgment ultimately discriminates against and facilitates persecution and suffering of others. Worst of all, it deprives others of their free agency to chose right or wrong. Very un-Christian.(The Crusades, Salem which trials, KKK, Taliban all come to mind). I'm sure love, tolerance and simply being a good example is what they are shooting for. I wish they would be as outspoken and clear about loving our neighbors, as opposed to judgment and pride as justification for bad behavior as they are about drinking coffee. It's so confusing. One thing I am certain of, refusing service to a gay person is as unconstitutional as refusing service to a black person or a Mormon. It is most certainly not religious persecution. It's simply un-American and un-Christian. Refusing a wedding cake to a couple because their Mormon, is religious persecution.

Aggielove
Cache county, USA

Looks like the posters above don't believe in religion.
I for ONE say thank you LDS church, and I embrace your stance.
Thanks!

michael.jensen369
Lethbridge, 00

@Linguist,
I'll cut and paste a comment I made recently about one of the articles you mentioned: "After reading your comment, I did some research about the article you mentioned. NBC, The Huffington Post, and even Media Matters covered the same issue, and none of them had any quotes by the lesbian women, or any gay-rights activists. I don't know the whole situation behind the reporting, but that is what I found. I also found on the NBC video that the owner stated that he has homosexuals come into his shop and buy stuff on almost a weekly basis, and he said that he has nothing wrong with them being homosexual, but that he simply does not support gay marriage. So there is a dichotomy here." There is nothing that said that bakery owner "kicked them out". He merely explained that he does not support gay marriage, and would not bake a cake for that purpose. I can understand how it can be painful and frustrating to be slandered or maligned about being gay. But that isn't the situation in this case, according to the evidence that was available.

wwookie
Payson, UT

Faith has been under attack for a very long time in this country.
And it's much mor than just faith, it's freedom as a whole. It is progressively harder to live your religion and comply with the law of the land. On the other hand, it has easier for others to infringe on your ability to practice your faith and be protected by the law.

Time to stand up and have your voice heard was decades ago. Now we are in a very fast downhill slide.

Pretty soon we will have a country where your freedom is choosing which church building you attend as long as what's preached has been approved by the federal government.

Just need to compare 30 years ago to today. Many more limitations to practicing your religion.

Really???
Kearns, UT

I believe in the right to practice the religious principles of your own choice, but I don't see these religious freedoms being threatened in any way. If you don't believe in birth control, don't use it. If you believe that homosexual relationships are wrong, don't participate in such activities. Live your religion, but don't cry that your religious freedoms are being when threatened when you can't force others to live according to your beliefs.

Wastintime
Los Angeles, CA

@wwookie

"Just need to compare 30 years ago to today. Many more limitations to practicing your religion."

Okay wwookie, please name for us 5 limitations to practicing your religion today in the U.S. (country) that did not exist in 1983.

Larry Chandler
CEDAR CITY, UT

This is not religious liberty. It is religious tyranny. If a person claims a religious right to ignore a secular law, what's the point of any law? Can someone simply claim their religion allows them to behave in a manner state or federal law prohibits? Would religions have to be mainstream and therefore licensed? If I claim the 10 commandments or any law are in opposition of my faith, can I just simply do as I please?

TRUTH
Salt Lake City, UT

About time they wake up.......religion is under attack and has been for years......and to know it doesn't take divine guidance or revelation...it's in every paper or blog site on the net!

Counter Intelligence
Salt Lake City, UT

The posters here pretty much prove why the need to protect religious freedom For example:
"If you don't believe in birth control, don't use it." A better question is: Simply because you want free birth control, what gives you the right to expect the Catholic Church to pay for it? Those who don't think there is an issue with religious freedom are merely the ones most blind to it

BTW: The most brutal despots of the twentieth century were militantly secular and/or openly hostile to religion, therefore the 'blame religion for all the worlds problems' attitude is remarkably myopic and represents a bigotry in its own right

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

I would like to know how the LDS Church has been negatively impacted by the "war on religion?"
Article:
"A leader in the campaign has been the Roman Catholic Church, which made religious liberty a top priority after Congress in 2009 passed the Affordable Care Act, which the church said violates its stand against birth control by requiring all employers to provide contraceptives through health care insurance plans."

Is the Catholic Church at "war" with itself?

"The National Catholic Reporter first reported earlier this week that the Catholic Health Association had issued a memo saying it can live with the Obama administration's latest compromise on birth control coverage by religious employers.

"We are pleased that our members now have an accommodation that will not require them to contract, provide, pay or refer for contraceptive coverage," said the CHA statement."
(DeseretNews July 2013)

Linguist
Silver Spring, MD

@michael.jensen369

My apologies-- you are quite right that she did not "kick out" anyone. She did, however, refuse to provide them with a service that she provided to other paying customers.

She didn't actually kick out the gay couple, but she did say that she didn't approve or recognize them as marrying, and therefore would not provide a service to them.

Honestly, while I think she has the right to disapprove and even to tell them so (as rude as that may be), I don't believe the marketplace should be off-limits to someone willing to pay for a service being offered.

Imagine a Christian baker not willing to bake a cake for a Jewish couple because their religion denies the divinity of Jesus. Imagine the Jewish baker refusing to bake a cake for a Christian couple because they worship a man as a god. Imagine a Protestant refusing to bake a cake for a Mormon couple...well, you get the idea.

Eventually, you have the Balkans: each bakery set up for one particular sect? The trouble with that scheme, of course, is that only certain sects will have no trouble finding cakes. Peace.

michael.jensen369
Lethbridge, 00

@redshirt007
You forget that terrible atrocities have been done in the name(or at least by their proponents)enforced atheism. I'm not denying what you said about the atrocities that have been committed in the name of religion. But I think Nazi Germany, and the Soviet Union are two examples of enforced atheism, where atheism is the state religion. And they aren't exactly stellar examples of championing human rights, or peace, or respect, or safety, or spirituality. The fact is, extremism is the enemy here. Not religion. Extremism is irrespective of religion, whether it be a theistic or atheistic one. And, if you search, you can find loads of studies that suggest a highly positive relationship between religiosity and civic-mindedness, donations to charity, and good citizenship. That's not a guarantee(because nobody is perfect; we are all affected by this "human condition" of ours), but it is most certainly much more likely. If you dig around on the Pew Forum's website, you'll find plenty of correct info.

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