The brief editorial entitled "Curtailing Religious Freedom"...

Hudson Dispatch

The brief editorial entitled "Curtailing Religious Freedom" was gratifying indeed as a recognition of the vital and inestimable value of religious freedom. We are apt to forget that religious freedom was the most cherished possession of our ancestors, that our country was first settled by pioneers of spiritual liberty, and that the Federal Constitution and constitutions of the several states guarantee to the fullest extent that freedom which our fathers held so dear. But if this freedom is to be limited by a medical tether, of what practical value are these solemn constitutional guaranties? It is certainly obvious that a tethered freedom is not freedom at all.

You say in the editorial referred to, "It is a serious matter to permit a nine-year-old child to die for want of medical treatment," and you also refer to the child as a "victim of the belief of Christian Science." Surely, the use of such expressions was the result of that sense of haste which often prevails in editorial sanctums. Haste is undoubtedly one of the worst of "the little foxes that spoil the vines." Let us then pause for a moment, forget haste, and stop long enough to think fairly and without prejudice.

Because a child dies under medical treatment, do we accuse the doctor? Or do we speak of the child as a "victim"? No, we do not: we are polite, and say the death could not be prevented, "everything was done for the child, but to no avail." Well, then, when a Christian Scientist proves to be not entirely infallible, why are we not equally polite and fair? Can the difference we make be rated in anything else than prejudice?

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