Letter: Christians should be restrained from expanding their already favored governmental standing

(Damon Winter/The New York Times) A large cross in Groom, Texas, April, 11, 2022.

A recent survey by the Public Research Institute and the Brookings Institution found 38% of LDS Church members favor the concept of America being a Christian nation. Approximately 67.7% or just over 2 million Utahns are LDS. The result indicates a significant number of Utahns contend America was founded under the influence of their Christian God and therefore subject to adapting to Christian doctrine.

That conflicts with 70% of all Americans who disagree that the government should declare America a Christian nation. Most don’t believe any single religious belief should hold sway over any other.

The Founding Fathers made it clear American governance should be separated from religion (the separation of church and state.) All reasonable religious beliefs should be able to flourish, but be confined to believers and not dictated to skeptics. A nation where non-Christians, atheists, deists and agnostics have equal influence involving all governmental affairs.

Christian nationalists favor governmental control, including Christian prayer, swearing by laying hands on the Bible, coinage representation, etc. Not that all-encompassing yet, but enough for the Founding Fathers to turn over in their graves. What they hated most was the total control the Church of England had over those not holding similar religious beliefs. They wanted to move as far away from that kind of religious domination as possible.

Christianity in America already enjoys advantageous status, like not being taxed on member contributions — too often resulting in enriching leaders and other noncharitable capitalistic ventures. Christians should be restrained from trying to further expand their already favored governmental standing.

Raymond A. Hult, Bountiful

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