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posted: 11/2/2012 4:40 AM

Leave religion out of governance

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Joe Biden and Paul Ryan crystallized the essential point of the abortion debate. Joe Biden's church teaches that life begins at conception, and he accepts this teaching in his private life, for himself. Joe Biden does not believe he has the right to martial the forces of government to coerce others -- who do not share his religious convictions -- to live their lives as though they did.

Mr. Biden refuses to ignore one of the first and most fundamental constitutional limits on government power: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

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In this, Paul Ryan has now established beyond question that a Romney/Ryan administration would make every effort to run roughshod over the protections built into our Constitution for women who do not share Mr. Ryan's or Mr. Biden's beliefs. A Romney/Ryan administration would seek to pass or support passage of laws, state or federal, that would force women who believe as I do, or indeed as Mr. Biden does, to live their lives though they shared Mr. Ryan's beliefs. And if Romney and Ryan feel free to use government power to do this, what might come next? Freedom indeed.

Alfred Y. Kirkland Jr.

Elgin

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