Letter: Commit to separation of church and state

During this session of the Iowa Legislature, Republicans introduced a bill requiring science teachers to include opposing points of views and beliefs if they provide instruction on evolution, origins of life, global warming and human cloning. Last month several elected representatives entertained the legislative body by performing Christian songs. A monument to the Ten Commandments stands on local government property. The Cedar Rapids City Council begins its meetings with prayer, usually from a Christian perspective. Yet, the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and its judicial interpretations make it clear that government cannot endorse any particular religion.

The objective of the framers of the Constitution was to create an environment in which people are free to believe what they want without government interference. The best way to do this is to commit to the separation of church and state. That should mean no classroom teachings, no music, no monuments and no prayers promoting Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed or any other religious leader.

Humanists of Linn County is an organization that works for the promulgation of the separation of church and state. We envision a world where science, reason, and compassion guide public policy and personal accountability. To this end, we raise money for equipment in the science classrooms of local schools.

On April 17 from noon-2:30 p.m. we will co-sponsor Reason On the Hill at the Capitol where we will speak with legislators about using reason, science and critical thinking in their decision making. We believe Iowans support these humanist values.

Marcia Swift

Humanists of Linn County

Cedar Rapids

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