Respecting race and religion

To the editor:

“Healthy Connections: Dismantling Hate and Restoring Community” was an educational workshop involving discussions with area community members. (Independent 2/1/24) Keynote speaker, Matt Lewellyn-Otten noted, “Connecting with people’s shared values during conversation is a way to help chip away at biases.”

We, in America, are grateful for shared freedoms– freedom to speak our opinions respectfully and freedom of religious beliefs are among our most valued freedoms. Panelist Julie Walker stated that “nationally 70% of people support the LGBTQ+ community. But it doesn’t always sound like that.”

Yes, there are people who don’t support same sex marriages. God has his own conversations with us, as recorded in the Bible. In the most important conversation God has with us, is telling of his love for all people and that all would be saved. We have the gift of eternal life, through faith in his son, Jesus, who died in our place, to pay for our sins. God also has “the hard conversations” with us. After God created the first man and woman, he brought them together to be husband and wife. (the first chapters of Genesis) Further on in the Bible, God tells us that sexual relationships should not be with someone of the same sex, or with animals. Revering God and his word and speaking his will for our lives, is not hate-speech unless someone is bullied for having a different belief.

Panelist Dr. JoseMorales Collago, a Worthington science teacher shared that he had good intentions when he put a LGBTQ+ pride flag and a flag from Puerto Rico (his home country) in his classroom. In January, the Worthington School Board voted to remove the flags. Which of the actions above best shows support and respect for every race, cultural and creed?

Let’s respect and promote respect for one another with our words and actions, and include our children and students in these conversations, reminding them that our American flag stands for respecting everyone’s race and religion.

Trudy Madetzke



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