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When Faith and Law Become Fighting Words

April 28, 2005

Re "Faith 'War' Rages in U.S., Judge Says," April 26: California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown may claim that "these are perilous times for people of faith." She may even delude herself into thinking that our goal as secularists is to stamp out her faith. But surely even she must recognize that the times are just as perilous for those of us who do not subscribe to hard-line Christianity. At every turn, we are demonized as the enemies of all believers, simply because we do not want their narrow-minded doctrine forced onto the rest of us.

The main difference between myself and Brown is this: When I get up in the morning, I couldn't care less about her faith; when she gets up, she is hellbent on making me obey that faith. This is a dangerous attitude for a person of such authority.

R. McKay Stangler

Columbia, Mo.

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Re "Battle Over Benches Spills Across Pews," April 25: All of the churches that broadcast Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's "commentary" on Sunday are engaging in partisan politics and should lose their tax-exempt status immediately. How many churches will broadcast a Democratic rebuttal?

For all this complaining from the right regarding the "liberal media," perhaps the rest of us should start complaining about the conservative takeover of Christianity, which is far more influential than the media.

Philip Brisk

Encino

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Liberals tend to be OK with stating that minorities -- such as filibustered D.C. Circuit nominees Brown and Miguel Estrada -- are only allowed to think one way (e.g., favoring affirmative action and the welfare state). If they deviate from that mode of thinking, they will be considered a sellout or an "Uncle Tom."

According to liberal evangelical Jim Wallis, however, when conservatives "say that people who disagree with their views and their strategy are not people of faith, they cross the line." Hypocrisy?

Hirbod Rashidi

Los Angeles

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I actually got an e-mail asking me if I was a good or a bad Christian. And my response was predicated on whether I support Frist's attempts to change the rules of the Senate. I'll tell you what I am. I'm against Frist and the Republican demagogues, and I really resent this unconstitutional marriage of church and state. I believe that Frist is sworn to uphold the Constitution, and I think he and all the other religious zealots in the House and Senate who are trying to turn America into a theocracy should be impeached today for violation of their oath of office.

Joan Meijer

Los Angeles

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