We all benefit from religious freedom | LETTER TO THE EDITOR
September 22, 2012 · 9:29 AM
To the editor:
“E Pluribus Unum” is found on the Great Seal of the United States. “Out of many, one” has come to mean the creating of one people out of many nations, races, cultures, and religions.
Over our history, we have extended that commitment through significant changes in belief and law. We abolished slavery, promoted full religious freedom, extended voting rights to women, and abolished, in 1967, all laws regarding miscegenation – marriage across racial boundaries.
This fall, the citizens of Washington will be asked to vote on our historic commitment to support equal rights for all citizens, this time endorsing the actions already taken by our elected representatives regarding marriage equality. Referendum 74 will continue the actions taken by our state legislature and will deepen our nation’s commitment to equality for all citizens.
As leaders of faith communities in Washington, we understand and benefit from our nation’s commitment to religious freedom. Our faith communities are living examples of “E Pluribus Unum.” Generations of citizens have fought and died, been jailed and beaten, endured spite and malice so that we might be free to worship as we choose, vote as we prefer, obtain the education we desire, live where we can, and love whom we will.
We pray that all citizens will examine the issues, reflect on our nation’s commitment to real equality for all, and let the world know that “E Pluribus Unum” is still our motto. Future generations will call us blessed if we do.
THE REVS. BARBARA AND JACO TEN HOVE, Co-ministers
Cedars Unitarian Universalist Church
THE REV. DR. DENNIS S. TIERNEY, Rector
Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church
THE REV. EMILY TANIS-LIKKEL, Pastor
Tapestry Church Northwest
THE REV. PAUL STUMME-DIERS, Pastor
Bethany Lutheran Church
THE REV. BILL HARPER, Rector
Grace Episcopal Church
THE REV. DR. DEE EISENHAUER, Pastor
Eagle Harbor Congregational Church
THE REV. ROBERT HENRE, Pastor
Seabold United Methodist Church
RABBI MARK GLICKMAN of Congregation Kol Shalom
THE REV. MARTIN SHELTON-JENCK, Pastor
Rolling Bay Presbyterian Church