Article Comment 

Voice of the people: Leah Barbour




Letter to Alderman Carver 


I saw your remarks to The Commercial Dispatch. I wanted to respond: 


I appreciate your willingness to go on the record, despite the fact that I find your opinions and actions reprehensible, fiscally irresponsible, unpatriotic and un-Christian. 


Choosing to embroil our town in a lawsuit that the taxpayers will lose is fiscally irresponsible. Saying you decided to vote for a measure as a reaction to the people who told you it was a bad idea is what children do when they face rules they don't like or understand. A grown man acting as a representative in city government should be able to listen to legal counsel -- and act on it -- to ensure taxpayers and constituents are protected from lawsuits.  


As an elected official, you have a responsibility to uphold the U.S. Constitution even when you don't like the types of people it protects. The rights to assembly and freedom of speech were so important to the creators of this nation that they listed them in the First Amendment. States are required to observe this direction in the Fourteenth Amendment, but again, these rights cannot be abrogated by your whim or the whim of your constituents.  


In your re-election campaign, you repeatedly referenced your "Christian" values. If you truly believe that homosexuality is evil, hateful, and sinful, then Jesus clearly responds that you are to love all the people who commit that sin, pray for them, and do good for them. When you voted to deny a particular group's parade permit because of your feelings, you acted against Jesus, not on His behalf. 


You have set a poor example for my children, my neighborhood, my town, and my state. You set a poor example as a Republican by directly associating that brand with discrimination, intolerance and fiscal irresponsibility. You set a poor example as an elected official by ignoring the U.S. Constitution to promote your personal agenda. Finally, you set a poor example as an American when you chose to insert your religious ideas into our local government. The U.S. Constitution demands separation between church and state, and whatever your religion may be, it does not belong in local government, nor does it follow the teachings of Jesus. 


I am looking forward to your recasting your vote to set a better example as an elected official, as a self-professed Christian, and as a Republican. As Jesus says in Matthew 12:32, "Every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven."  


Embrace Jesus' call to love your enemies. 


Leah Barbour  




Editor's note: This letter was edited for clarity and length.



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