As a member of the clergy in Baton Rouge, I received a copy of the open letter presented to the Governor’s Office to sign. It was my decision not to sign the letter; not because I disagree or agree with its content. I just think those of us who are called to be ministers should not use our position to fight against issues that really don’t affect the spiritual state of a people.

To quote Elder Jerry Price in the article in Tuesday’s paper, “We’re not talking about numbers on a page. We’re talking about souls and people we love.” I would love to see the clergy unify and stand in opposition to legislation and laws that really do affect the souls of individuals and all people. I think that clergy, as well as anyone, has the right to stand against any issue that they are in opposition with. But it shouldn’t be done solely as an effort from the clergy. Everyone who opposes the tax revamp proposal should be included. I’d like the clergy to stand together against the moral issues that oppose the position we take as clergy — and stand together publicly and state our opposition to any issue that opposes morality.

Issues such as abortion that rob this nation, and in this case, the state of Louisiana of its population growth, of potential future presidents, business professionals, schoolteachers, police officers, executives, governors, professors, athletes, clergy etc. That also leaves women, after having an abortion, with serious health and emotional issues that adversely affect them. Issues such as the elimination of prayer in our schools and governmental proceedings etc. Issues like homosexual extended rights, same-sex marriages that ultimately rob us of solid family units.

These issues, and even more, hinder the population growth in our nation, as well as the state of Louisiana. Issues such as gambling that cause many individuals to become addicted to gambling and lose their life’s savings, retirement funds, grandchildren’s college funds etc. Issues such as alcoholism and drunk driving that kill untold hundreds of innocent individuals. Issues such as convicted murderers, rapists and child molesters getting off better than the victims in crimes perpetrated against them. The list can go on and on. All of these issues tend to cut away at the moral fabric of our society, which the clergy should really stand together to combat.

The governor’s tax revamp plan doesn’t seem to carry the weight to affect our society as do the issues aforementioned above. Where is the solidarity of the clergy on issues that really affect the souls of people rather than money?

Carl L. Brown


Baton Rouge