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Dear Editor:
Obviously, Mr. Benjamin Lowe, in his crusade against my "attack on people's religious beliefs", missed the point. (I really don't believe Mr. Lowe is taking the position that his religious beliefs allow him to keep slaves from neighboring countries, or sell his daughter into slavery, or to kill others who break God's law, as the Bible in Leviticus suggests, but I am unclear as to exactly what religious beliefs he perceives I have "attacked"). Like singer Jim Croce said in a song just before his untimely death in the sixties, "Updown got it's hustlers, downtown got it's bums . . . . but they all call Big Jim Boss . . . You don't tug on Superman's cape, you don't spit into the wind, you don't pull the mask off the old Lone Ranger, and you don't mess around with Slim . . . . dee dee dee depen dee . . . "

The point is, organized religion or "Church" of any sort or kind - Slim, if you will - has no place in politics, although without respect for the concepts of goodness expressed in the beliefs of all the major religions - although not always followed by adherents - politics would be a dirtier place than it is.

And yes, I believe that Americans should remain "under God" in the Pledge, even though I may not believe in the same concept of God, or adhere to the same religious beliefs as does Mr. Lowe - for concepts are unimportant and dogma is irrelevant, but leading a good life is important, and from religion, regardless of creed, we gain guidance in this direction . . . . if we would only listen carefully.

Reverence, not only to God, but to fellow man, is an attribute for which all human beings should strive, and is a concept that can be shared quite apart from the type of religion the forefathers of America feared when they mandated separation of Church and State. I do not believe, however, that the forefathers mandated a separation of logic, or goodness, or respect for mankind that is universal, using religion as a conduit, because the forefathers were some of the most God fearing men of the world. And although the forefathers adhered to Leviticus, and kept slaves - from a land far across the sea that I presume could be considered "neighboring", because it is only water separating the two continents, their hearts were in the right place, and with the assistance of the U.S. Supreme Court, while not perfect, the United States of America stands as an inspiration to the world as a leader in the area of human rights.

Like it or not, unlike human rights, and notwithstanding concerns for refugees and asylees and the like, immigration issues are strictly political, notwithstanding the bleeding hearts that want to clothe immigration in the garb of humanitarianism because immigrants are nice, upstanding, hardworking people. And I agree with Mr. Lowe, religion should be omitted from the debate on immigration, just as it should have been omitted from the Presidency and the Attorney General's Office. But as to my attack on the Bible and religion, come now, the Bible says what the Bible says, and it says just what I said it says. Evidently it is my tongue and cheek humor that offends Mr. Lowe, rather than my revealing what the Bible says (I said from the beginning that ILW.com had opened a "Pandora's Box" and was waiting for a Mr. Lowe to provide a comment from the moral majority. Thank you, Mr. Lowe, for not letting me down.). Like the Bible says, "seek and ye shall find" [Matt. 7:7; Luke 11:9]. I only hope that this is true and that the world will someday listen and hear, seek and find, quite apart from any particular religion, religious sect, denomination or dogma, but in the true sense of the goodness of the human spirit.

We should all lighten up a bit in these trying times, take a deep breath (although here in Southern California that can sometimes be dangerous), love, laugh, at ourselves and at others, and not only listen to the message, but hear it, and not stone the messenger. We should all work together for the good of humanity, for freedom, for America, for Mom and apple pie. The nations of the world should work together to end war, the people of the world should work together to end bigotry, end hatred, end violence, and like those of us old enough to have participated in the political and social movements of the mid to late sixties and early seventies, seek, and continue to seek peace and love. If enough of us seek, perhaps - some day - we shall find.

David D. Murray, Esq.
Newport Beach, CA
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