Until every soul is freely permitted to investigate every book, and creed, and dogma for itself, the world cannot be free. Mankind will be enslaved until there is mental grandeur enough to allow each man to have his thought and say. This earth will be a paradise when men can, upon all these questions differ, and yet grasp each other's hands as friends. It is amazing to me that a difference of opinion upon subjects that we know nothing with certainty about, should make us hate, persecute, and despise each other. Why a difference of opinion upon predestination, or the trinity, should make people imprison and burn each other seems beyond the comprehension of man; and yet in all countries where Christians have existed, they have destroyed each other to the exact extent of their power. Why should a believer in God hate an atheist? Surely the atheist has not injured God, and surely he is human, capable of joy and pain, and entitled to all the rights of man. Would it not be far better to treat this atheist, at least, as well as he treats us?Christians tell me that they love their enemies, and yet all I ask is—not that they love their enemies, not that they love their friends even, but that they treat those who differ from them, with simple fairness.We do not wish to be forgiven, but we wish Christians to so act that we will not have to forgive them. If all will admit that all have an equal right to think, then the question is forever solved; but as long as organized and powerful churches, pretending to hold the keys of heaven and hell, denounce every person as an outcast and criminal who thinks for himself and denies their authority, the world will be filled with hatred and suffering. To hate man and worship God seems to be the sum of all the creeds.
Let my silence grow with noise as pregnant mothers grow with life. Let my silence permeate these walls as sunlight permeates a home. Let the silence rise from unwatered graves and craters left by bombs. Let the silence rise from empty bellies and surge from broken hearts. The silence of the hidden and forgotten. The silence of the abused and tortured. The silence of the persecuted and imprisoned. The silence of the hanged and massacred. Loud as all the sounds can be, let my silence be loud so the hungry may eat my words and the poor may wear my words. Loud as all the sounds can be, let my silence be loud so I may resurrect the dead and give voice to the oppressed. My silence speaks.
It should be made clear that religious freedom DOES NOT include the right to persecute others, nor the right to take away their humanity and equal treatment before the law.
Persecuting Christians because of Jesus Christ is like a man who goes after the children of his enemy because he is indeed afraid of his enemy. Matthew 24:9
Jesus is the perfect name!He who put away his fame!And persecuted in shame!That you will never be the same!It's because of you and I He came!Believe him or have yourself to blame!In the book of life, have your name!
No policeman had ever arrested anyone for over-reading; but ignorance prosecutes those who under-read. You begin to stop growing on the day you stop learning, so why not keep learning and keep growing!
Bless them that persecute you.' If our enemy cannot put up with us any longer and takes to cursing us, our immediate reaction must be to lift up our hands and bless him. Our enemies are the blessed of the Lord. Their curse can do us no harm. May their poverty be enriched with all the riches of God, with the blessing of Him whom they seek to oppose in vain. We are ready to endure their curses so long as they redound to their blessing.
Denying the facts is what enables people to hate and to persecute marginalized and threatened minority groups. Labeling the advocacy, educational and informational initiatives of these persecuted minority groups dismissively as 'propaganda for the gay agenda' undermines, belittles and trivializes the cause of those whose right to exist is under threat.
The sciences are not sectarian. People do not persecute each other on account of disagreements in mathematics. Families are not divided about botany, and astronomy does not even tend to make a man hate his father and mother. It is what people do not know, that they persecute each other about. Science will bring, not a sword, but peace.