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Tactless statement disrespects our heritage

Let’s just say we’re more than just disappointed in our Dist. 7 State Senator Sheryl Nuxoll’s performance last week.

Idaho has, for starters, pressing issues of education and crumbling infrastructure; however, legislative focus was needlessly distracted by last Tuesday’s, March 3, legislator abstention from a Hindu prayer – given at the statehouse by Rajan Zed, president of the Universal Society of Hinduism — by Cottonwood’s Nuxoll and two other Republican senators, Steve Vick of Dalton Garden, and Lori Den Hartog of Meridian.

According to the Associated Press coverage, Nuxoll said she protested the prayer because she believed the United States is a Christian nation and that “Hindu is a false faith with false gods. I think it’s great that Hindu people can practice their religion, but since we’re the Senate, we’re setting an example of what we, Idaho, believe.”

Nuxoll elaborated, wishing the Senate had conducted a Christian prayer along with the Hindu invocation.

First off, that was a tactless statement by Nuxoll, a supposed representative of the people, regarding Hinduism. Your Gospel is not everyone’s truth, Senator, and it’s quite likely the legislature has its share of other faiths and no faith, represented in those seats … who, regardless, stand and respect the regular opening Christian prayer.

No one violated the First Amendment with the morning’s abstention, but it certainly didn’t bring honor to Idaho – either regionally or nationwide — on how highly we value the Constitution in its entirety, and it was certainly a sign of disrespect to this nation’s heritage of inviting all to share in its freedom, promise of opportunity and religious tolerance.

For crying out loud. We’re embarrassed to have to even be addressing this silliness, but this matter couldn’t go without comment. And not because it’s a violation of today’s rampant political correctness sentiments or because some hypersensitive hand-wringer got his or her feelings hurt.

Our elected officials need to be reminded they represent us all. And as a nation – created from immigrants of many races and beliefs — founded on Christian principles, we, who claim to honor and hold up to these, should demonstrate our love, compassion and respect for others through our actions.

In this case, it was apparently a lack thereof.


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