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Freedom for some
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Scott Carter's "Graham's straitjacket" (Forum, Oct. 21) reported on the Rev. Billy Graham's full-page Wall Street Journal ad that said to "vote for those who protect the biblical definition of marriage … and pray with me that America will remain one nation under God."

In Graham's use of the Pledge of Allegiance's "one nation under God," it's telling that in his opposition to same-sex marriage he didn't continue the quotation: "with liberty and justice for all."

That's understandable, for people like Graham and his Mormon allies (who Graham's website no longer calls a cult, since he prayed with Gov. Mitt Romney last month) to insist on enforcing their "biblical definition of marriage" on everyone — believer, other-believer, non-believer. They don't really believe in freedom for all, just for those who believe like them.

Carter said Graham's straitjacketing of "America into one way of belief and living" was "un-American." That seems strong. But if you really believe everyone has the inalienable right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness, Carter is right.

Still, the desire and attempt to force your values on everyone else has, sadly, been historically very American.

Andy Kirk

Salt Lake City

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