Letters from the week of Thursday, April 21, 2005

It amused me to see all the outraged mainstream Mormons cry foul about Dougherty's reference to a couple of them messing with Arizona State University (Letters, March 31). Because I think Dougherty is right about the situation at ASU ("Religious Wrong," March 17). Regarding polygamy, these same Mormons consider the fundamentalists up north their dirty little secret. And for these mainstream church members to say that religion has nothing to do with the likes of Russell Pearce trying to censor the State Press at ASU is just crazy. Of course these right-wing dolts from a right-wing religion are going to try to run roughshod over the Constitution. What do you expect?!

Anyway, thanks for keeping the pressure up on the state to do the right thing regarding the polygamy bill to take over the Colorado City school system and stop the "money train." Though I doubt it will, wouldn't it be great if the state stopped worrying about offending Mormons and did what Jesus would truly want it to do? Too bad there's not a bill that would allow the state to take over Arpaio's sheriff's department and throw him in jail.
Michelle Cinelli, San Diego

Those disgusting polygs: The fact that these polygamists are out there doing this legally is absolute disgusting. But the fact that they are even mentioning the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as part of their backward way of life is terrible. I wish there was something that I could do to change this awful way of life.
Susan Mansker, Las Vegas

It was invented . . . by TJ: I'm writing in reference to Ryan Butler's letter to the editor (("Founding Fathers Would Quake," March 31) in which he states: "I also take offense at [John Dougherty's] use of 'separation of church and state' [in ("Religious Wrong"], an invented phrase not sponsored by the founders of this country."

I would have to ask whom he considers the founders of the United States. The phrase comes from a letter by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association in which Mr. Jefferson wrote:

"I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their Legislature should make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between church and state."

Given that Mr. Jefferson not only penned the Declaration of Independence, served in the first three administrations of this nation and was instrumental in ensuring the freedoms Americans enjoy today through the Bill of Rights, it seems ludicrous to say that the phrase "separation of church and state" is not his. Perhaps Mr. Butler should spend more time learning U.S. history before deciding the theological wishes of its founders.

I'm sure he could find the time by simply skipping a night of Fox News.
Mathieson Sterling, Phoenix

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