Promote true religious freedom

Bowing to one religion’s dogma does not promote religious freedom.

by Daily Editorial Board

As Americans, we have a double standard toward religion: We criticize Islamic influence in democratically elected governments in the Middle East and north Africa but dismiss the fact that Christianity has a similar influence in our own government. We need to face up to dogmatic religious influence in our laws and need to act to ensure that religious dogma does not control our supposedly secular state.

Two recent examples include health insurers opting out of birth control coverage and Minnesota’s marriage amendment, which will continue to deny civil marriage to gay couples.

While the arguments made by the proponents of both issues may be shared by other religions, politicians seem to be taking their cues solely from Christian dogma against the use of contraceptives and gay rights.

Both issues are simple examples of Christian doctrine and neither promotes true religious freedom in our state or nation since they force individuals, as well as institutions, to abide by this doctrine.

The greatness of the U.S. is that you are allowed to think however you like and allowed to express that publicly as well. However, the line must be drawn when these religious beliefs encroach on the lives of others.

We need to do away with laws that obstruct us from the pursuit of happiness and with the Christian dogma in our government that, for the nonbeliever and believer alike, restricts people from making their own choices. Bowing to one religion’s influence is not religious freedom. Let us maintain a truly secular state and denounce the incessant push for religious doctrines to be written into our state’s law.