All minorities deserve respect, Mormon apostle tells black church leaders

Source: The Salt Lake Tribune


All voices — black and white, religious and secular, gay and straight — belong in the public square in a pluralistic society, a Mormon apostle told a gathering of African-American church leaders this week.

“Our country has learned all too slowly, and forgets too easily, that we all do better when the voices of all minorities are given respect in our national dialogue,” Quentin L. Cook said in an address this week at the Seymour Institute Seminar for Black Church and Policy Studies at Princeton University. “We stand to lose a great deal now if insights from religion are labeled as irrational and irrelevant in the public sphere and if individual believers are dismissed as bigots when they express deeply held beliefs about the social importance of institutions like traditional marriage.”

A fairness policy would allow people of faith and their respective religions to worship, practice their beliefs and express them “openly without fear of retaliation or ostracism,” he said. Such believers would be free from occupational, educational, professional and social discrimination due to their religious thinking. It would be acceptable for faiths to “establish doctrines, ceremonies, and requirements for membership, including ecclesiastical office and employment.”

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