I believe in Jesus Christ and I am very upset about the religious freedom law better known as the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) that was recently passed in Indiana. But I should have been upset a while ago since 19 other states have already quietly passed this law or some version of it.
No matter how you feel about gay people or anyone that is DIFFERENT from you, this law is unjust. Freedom to worship is one thing, but freedom to discriminate can never be a good thing. And in spite of our diversity, isn’t the money we spend or the credit cards we use, the SAME? Discrimination against one group leaves the door open for discrimination against all. Remember, this type of law and thinking was used to enslave millions of African-Americans, keep women from voting and relegated them to the status of second class citizens, and most recently to discriminate against Muslims after 9/11. Everyone is entitled to practice their religious beliefs, but do you really want to practice a religion that teaches hate or discrimination? I have never read where Jesus Christ, the Prophet Mohammed, or Buddha taught such things. However, I did read about loving one’s neighbor like you would love yourself or treating others as you would like to be treated. While, I have your attention, this is also the same type of law that Adolph Hitler used to discriminate and murder millions of the Jewish faith, except his law was not as thinly veiled. Monsters can hide behind religion too, and just as religious persecution is a horrible thing, so is discrimination by those who claim to be religious, moral, and upstanding people. This is something we should all be paying attention to, especially the TRUE followers of religious faith and those who despise discrimination in any form, are compassionate and open-minded, and appreciate and respect diversity. There is a silver lining in all this, many people voiced displeasure and disagreement by marching, tweeting, writing, and talking about this hot button issue, this past week, and that gave me hope.
Lastly, I am reminded of the famous quote by Pastor Martin Niemoller, which is still very relevant today:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Hmmm, something to think about.