Letter: Don’t jettison religious freedom

The Arizona bill Randy Blaser wrote about (March 6), was, I believe, brought about by situations involving wedding photographers and cake bakers being forced to work for homosexual weddings. Let’s turn the tables for a moment and imagine a graphic design company asked to design a logo for a local Klu Klux Klan group. Should the graphic designers be forced, by law, to exert their skill for the glory of something they rightfully disagree with? I say absolutely not.

No reasonable person wants to bring back Jim Crow laws and apply them to homosexuals. All we are asking for is the freedom to make a living in a way that accords with our principles. That’s why freedom of religion is in the First Amendment. As a Catholic, I wonder about my own future when I see my fellow citizens so hastily jettisoning religious freedom. If you let go of it now, folks, it won’t be there when you need it later!

Finally, Randy Blaser missed a key point in the story about Jesus and the adulterous woman: after the crowd disperses, Jesus tells her that he does not condemn her, and follows up with a significant command: “Go, and sin no more.” Jesus, and Pope Francis, wisely teach us to refrain from judging people, but they still judge behaviors as right and wrong. By refusing to stone the woman, Jesus wasn’t abolishing sin; he was making room for repentance in a vindictive world. Those are two very different things, and only one of them is needed today.

Joe Paolelli, Park Ridge

master of arts, biblical languages and literature

Loyola University Chicago

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