My how social media has changed the world and continues to change it minute by minute. That was evident this weekend when we aired that the City of Jonesboro removed Bible verses from the Jonesboro E-911 Facebook page.
Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin removed the post after a Wisconsin organization called the Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter to the city stating official government websites cannot promote religion.
The Mayor had been under intense scrutiny, but is now asking the Arkansas attorney general to look into the matter.
Many in Region 8 question why an organization in Wisconsin should dictate what Jonesboro city government does. It's simple. Government entities must follow different laws than you and I as private citizens. In the letter, The Freedom From Religion Foundation declares to protect the constitutional principle of separation of church and state.
Depending on what the Arkansas AG's office says - a lawsuit could be filed. If that happens it could cost the city and its residents hundreds of thousands of dollars to defend it no matter the outcome.
But there's more to it than just money. If a lawsuit is filed and the city loses the case, the national press will grab hold of it, and we receive negative press. And in my opinion, the Freedom From Religion Foundation gets what they really want... credibility.
I applaud Mayor Perrin for taking the verses down, and asking for the attorney general's help. This is a tough decision, and I think Mayor Perrin is being smart with our tax money. Unfortunately, this is the world we live in.
So what can we do about it? We can continue to pray for our leaders while they're in the process of making these kinds of tough decisions, support them when the decision is made and continue expressing our religious views within the framework of the United States Constitution.
If you would like to express your opinion on this, we're listening. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Chris Conroy, KAIT VP & General Manager
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