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April 21, 2016     Tri-County News
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PAGE 4 April 21, 2016 www.tricountynews.mn It's freedom of conscience, not religion We may be tempted to applaud industry.. If an oil exec came in to when certain businesses - like flo- buy flowers for his wife's birthday fists, caterers, photographers, etc. - and she refused - that would be - are forced to provide their set- unacceptable discrimination. But vices for the weddings of same-sex she shouldn't be forced to partic- couples. Many such businesses ipate in a public event against the have faced heavy fines, and even dictates of her conscience. been driven out of business, due Or, what if a restaurant owner/ to their refusal to do so. "Good," caterer was asked to provide food we may say, "They shouldn't for a white supremacist group's discriminate." celebration of Adolph Hitler's The issue, however, is not dis- birthday? And a baker was asked crimination, or anti-gay se.nti- to make a cake for Adolph? And ment. What fs at stake is free- a photographer was asked to dom of conscience. And that, my take pictures of the event? White friends, is a freedom at the core supremacists have a constitu- of all the freedoms we enjoy as tional right to their beliefs and Americans. speech - as long as they don't While closely related to free- engage in violent, illegal activi- dom of religion, freedom of con- ties. Though the restaurant owner science is a freedom that extends would no doubt serve an indi- to all people,, religious or not. It is vidual white supremacist dinner thefreedomnottobeforcedtovio- in her restaurant, and the baker late one's conscience, the freedom would make a cake for .the white to act in accordance with one's supremacist's daughter's birthday, moral or religious convictions, and the photographer would snap It would be different if the flo- his family picture in her studio for fists, caterers, and photographers his Christmas card, NONE of them in question refused to serve gay should be forced to participate people at all. That would be dis- in public ceremonies that violate crimination - and should not their moralconscience. be tolerated. But that's not the At this moment in history, those issue. For example, a florist in who are morally opposed to same Washington was sued in 2013 sex marriage are routinely labeled when she declined the oppor- "haters," and are accused of the tunity to provide flowers for the kind of civil rights discrimination wedding of a longtime customer, suffered by blacks in the days of The florist had done business with Jim Crow laws in the South. This this customer for many years, but comparison is both untrue and graciously said that she could not unfair. Unfortunately, many corn- - in good conscience - participate mentators in the media fail to dis- in a same sex wedding. According tinguish between class discrim- to her religious convictions, mar- ination - which is unacceptable riage should only be between a and illegal- and theconstitutional man and a woman, right of an individual to decline Even so, shouldn't she be forced participation in a specific pub- to serve everyone, especially since lic event which violates his or her same sex marriage is now the law conscience. Though this distinc- of the land? Don't be too quick to tion is not difficult to understand, agree. What if, instead of being I believe that many in the media asked to provide flowers for a gay purposely distort - and there- wedding, her services were solic- fore fail to report - the real issue ited for the annual banquet of at stake: freedom of conscience. a major oil company - and she, And this should concern all of us. by conscience, was opposed to Today, it's conservative Christians the use of fossil fuels, consider- who are forced to violate their con- ing them to be poisonous to the scienceorfacethelossoftheirlive- environment? Shouldn't she be lihood. The question is, who will it allowed to decline that business be tomorrow? opportunity? It would be different Pastor David S. Milz if she refused to sell flowers to an Kimball, Minnesota individual who worked in the oil Jill "Slices of Life" Monday melancholy Monday is a good day to put things off until tomorrow. You've got lots more time to complete the project with a Friday dead- line, which seems a long way off on Monday. Procrastination and Mondays go together like wine Oh, the dreaded Monday. We I for one am not going to give and cheese. all experience and endure it; 14.2857 percent of my days over to 'While procrastinating on a although depending on your spe- melancholy. There are good things Monday, you can take the chance cific schedule, your Monday might about Mondays. Sure there are. to catch up on all the social media fall on a Thursday. Still, we under- You just have to click your heels activity you missed over the stand the concept of Monday mel- together and believe, weekend (during your breaks and ancholy (or Thursday melancholy, Mondaymarksthebeginningof lunch, of course). You can view as the case may be). the workweek. Opportunities for photos of all the exciting things I've never been one to shy away accomplishing tasks and attaining your friends did while you were from Mondays. It's as good a time as any to get things done and put things off. But I have to confess: lately they've been getting to me. I find myself feeling listless and unmotivated on the first day of the standard workweek. You know what they say, when goals spread out in the days ahead, home cleaning the garage. waiting to be conquered. Monday Monday rhymes with fun-day, is filled with possibilities, which is a great time to test the Going to work on Monday gives pairing of wine and cheese alluded you a nice break from weekend to earlier(afterwork, of course). chores like scrubbing toilets or Sometimes the sun is shining cleaning out the garage, on Monday. In fact, according to A Monday morning commute highly accurate Internet statistics, life gives you lemons .... In thisgives you a break from life, butnot it is the least rainy day ofweek. That case, when life gives you a Monday, traffic. It can be a time to reflect on makes it a Monday sun-day, which I say make it a three-day weekend, the past and plan for the future, but beats out rainy days and Mondays Unfortunately, that's not typically not send or receive text messages, any day of the week. possible. Like it or not, we've all got You can rock out and sing loudly Finally, Monday's a great day to deal with Mondays upwards of to the radio on your choice of sta- to count your blessings. When 50 - or maybe even more - times tion without your kids or spouse you do, I'm pretty sure you'll everyyear, changing it on you, which can be decide Monday's not so bad after Science backs me up on irritating, even on a Saturday. all. Besides, at the end of the day this: Mondays are unavoidable. As you are making your corn-you've only got three more to go - Research has proven that each mute, remember to smile. It's until Friday. morning when you wake up, there Monday! If you do, you'll be ahead of Jill Pertler is an award-winning is a 14.2857 percent chance the day the majority. According to Internet syndicated columnist, published playwright, author and member of will be a Monday. You can't argue lore, most people do not smile on the National Society of Newspaper with numbers because numbers Monday until 11:16 a.m. and that's Columnists. Don't miss a slice; follow don't lie - and not just because probably because by that time they the Slices of Life page on Facebook. they can't talk. are anticipating lunch. The Tri-County News is the official Newspaper of the Cities of Kimball and Watkins; the Kimball Area School District (ISD#739); Fair Haven, Forest Prairie, Kingston, and Maine Prairie Townships; and Clearwater River Watershed District. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the Tri-County News, P.O. Box 220, Kimball MN 55353. The Tri-County News (USPS 639-180) is entered at the Post Office, Kimball, Minnesota 55353, as Periodicals. It is published Thursdays by Tri-County News, P.O. Box 220, Kimball MN 55353, Stearns County. LOCATIONS: Our Office is at 70 S. Main St. ip downtown Kimball. Weekday office hours are Monday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Our telephone and fax number is (320) 398-5000 or (320) 453-6397. E-mail can be addressed to news@tricountynews.MN. Our Web site is www.tricountynews.MN. We also have drop sites at Ertl Hardware Hank in downtown Watkins. RATES: Subscription rates are $36/year ($26 for age 62 and older) in Minnesota; $46/year ($36 for seniors) elsewhere in the U.S. Single copy price is $1. DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: 2 p.m. Monday (3 p.m. Friday if Monday is a holiday). OUR AWARD-WINNING STAFF: ||ll/llll| Jean Domn Matua, Editor and Publisher Maxine Domn: Typesetter, Circulation Marguerite Laabs: Photographer Sue Hughes: Creative Designer Jayne Harff: Office Manager Pat Garry: Staff Writer Mary Knaus: Sales The staff of the Tri-County News recognizes that it has a responsibility to report the news accurately and fairly, and that it is accountable to the public. Please contact our office if you feel we've fallen short of that objective. LETTERS: The Tri-County News welcomes letters COPYRIGHT: All content herein is the property promoting the exchange of ideas and opinions, of the Tri-County News and is protected by U.S. To be considered for publication, letters should copyright law; content may not be reproduced address a topic of current or general interest. Private without our written prior consent. thanks, political self-promotion, libelous letters, We are proud to be a member of: Minnesota or letters denigrating character or reputation will Newspaper Assoc., Kimball Area Chamber, Eden not be published. All letters must bear the writer's Valley Chamber, Watkins Chamber, and Kimball signature, address and telephone number. We Area HistoricalSociety. reserve the right to edit for clarity and readability. The Tri-County News has won numerous peer-judged awards for advertising, website, LEGAL PUBLICATION: The Tri-County News is photography, and writing. We strive to be Your the publication of record for the City of Kimball; Hometown News, with a printed newspaper and a City of Watkins; Independent School District #739 (Kimball); Clearwater River Watershed District, website of which you can be proud. and the Townships of Fair Haven, Forest Prairie, 2016, Tri-Counbj News, all rights reserved. Kingston, and Maine Prairie. 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