First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me
--Pastor Martin Niemöller
That is not the way America works. Religion freedom has always been a cherished American value. So too is the freedom to choose one's religion. Government has no right to tell us what our religious faith should be or to take our rights away because of our faith.
Yesterday Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump declared that the United States should enact a ban on Muslims traveling to the United States. That is an utterly reprehensible suggestion, an idea that could not be more un-American. Should we ban Muslim extremists who use their religion as a justification to do harm to this country? Absolutely. But certainly not all Muslims fall into that category; not even a majority do.
Christians, who have been the target of the religious bigots, have a particular duty to speak out about Donald Trump's anti-Muslim bigotry. If we need a reason to do so, we need only consider Pastor Niemöller's most eloquent poem.