I found Kenny Chumbley’s June 26 column disturbing. He wrote, “there are people who hate America who want to govern America.” How can he know that?

He calls out secular humanists, whom Wikipedia defines as believing that “human beings are capable of being ethical and moral without religion or a god.” They “emphasize the unique responsibility facing humanity and the ethical consequences of human behavior.”

Chumbley takes issue with them for criticizing government. He accuses them of chipping away at American values.

As a lifelong Christian, I would be happy to see Americans take a good, hard look at our government. Our “Christian” nation has failed to live up to that name repeatedly: genocide of Native Americans and seizure of their lands; enslavement of Africans; ongoing racism; meddling in the affairs of other nations to plunder resources or maintain a balance of power; rape of our own environment to enrich a few. Worse yet, the Christian Bible has been held up as justification for those actions.

What I hold most dear about our democracy is that it rests on two significant and revolutionary ideas: that every person is equal and every person has a voice in government.

I didn’t hear that in Chumbley’s column. What I heard was that his Christian faith gives him a lock on what is right. He fears that secular humanists will prevail and predicts it would be the end of democracy. 

I don’t believe the skies will fall if our political discussions become inclusive. The more voices at the table, including secular humanists, the stronger our nation will be.

The more we are willing to look at our mistakes, to listen, to repent, lament and atone for them, the stronger our nation will be.

Debra Rawlings