Today is July 4. That’s Independence Day in the United States of America. In this wonderful country, every citizen is free to express political, religious, and philosophical opinions without fear of government repression. It’s one of the wonders of our amazing country. I fully support the right of every citizen and company to do so.
In today’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch, our venerable daily newspaper, Hobby Lobby placed a full page ad. That’s not unusual for Hobby Lobby. Unlike most of their full page ads as I recall, this one did not prominently display the name of Hobby Lobby. Rather, one had to read the fine print at the bottom of the page to determine who paid for the full page ad – a costly endeavor.
This ad quoted liberally from the Bible and from some of our revered statesmen of old – Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and others. Not unusual for an ad on Independence Day.
However, the gist of this ad was that the US is a Christian country. Each quote, hand picked for singular effect of course, nailed home the notion that this country was founded as a Christian nation, is now a Christian nation, and that it must remain that way.
I have a question for Hobby Lobby which I will write to them about in a few minutes.
What about those of our citizens who are not Christian?
Are they to be merely tolerated?
Should they buy their craft supplies at Hobby Lobby and keep their mouths shut if they aren’t Christian? Does Hobby Lobby support the notion of another company or individual taking out a full page ad to state that this is the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave no matter what religion the citizen is? The owner of the business is? The immigrant is? The soldier is? The protester is?
In the US, the right to freedom of speech (and print) is held to be a sacred one. I strongly support this right. I believe it is both God given and inalienable. Clearly Hobby Lobby does not share my strongly held conviction that all our citizenry has the right to both full citizenship and freedom of religion. That this country was founded – yes, mostly by Christians – as a haven for believers of all religions or none. That those who are not Christian have the God given right to be more than tolerated.
As much as I love “I Love This” yarn, I will not be buying any more of it or anything else that HL sells unless I get a really compelling answer to my letter to them asking about what I see as their intolerance of all the US citizens who are not Christian. It’s just that simple. Either we are all free and equal or none of us is.