Readers Write (March 7): Marriage poll, St. Thomas president, child-care union, snowplows

  • Updated: March 6, 2013 - 7:01 PM
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MARRIAGE POLL

Majority has no right to trample on minority

A new Minnesota Poll found that a majority of Minnesotans oppose same-sex marriage (March 6). I think a couple of points need to be made. First, if you believe as I do that the vast majority of people with same-sex preferences are born that way, it does not seem at all right that we should expect them to be someone they’re not.

As a happily heterosexual married man, I could only imagine how I would react if things were reversed and the majority of the population was gay. Suffice to say that I would be a somewhat militant heterosexual. Second, although the United States is a constitutional democracy operating according to majority rule, our Constitution provides for inalienable rights for individual citizens. This clearly means that the majority does not have the right to trample on individual liberties.

Although I understand how racial minorities might have a hard time accepting this fact, the bottom line is that the issue of gay rights is absolutely the civil-rights issue of our time.

Jim Eilers, Burnsville

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ST. THOMAS

New hire feels like shift toward secular

The Star Tribune Editorial Board completely missed the point of why Julie Sullivan’s appointment as president of the University of St. Thomas was so unfortunate and misguided (“A bold hire for St. Thomas,” March 6).

St. Thomas is the largest private and faith-based university in the state. So it is a surprise that its choice was a second-in-command from a smaller school whose academic degrees are in accounting and business. Where is the emphasis on philosophy, theology and ethics that is so critical to a faith-based university? There are many wonderful religious men and women who could have helped turn around St. Thomas.

I recently took a graduate-level “ethics in leadership” course and expected to study great Catholic ethical and philosophical thinkers such as St. Thomas Aquinas, Augustine, John Henry Newman, Pope John Paul II, Alasdair MacIntyre and even the non-Catholic Aristotle. To my great dismay, the course included only standard secular frameworks for evaluating ethical issues, with nary a thought granted to the great thinkers of our tradition. I could have received the same training at any secular university.

St. Thomas is becoming a secular institution with stained-glass windows — pretty on the outside, but spiritually failing on the inside. What a sad loss for a place I called home.

Mark Cossack, Shoreview

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FLEXIBLE HOURS

There are consequences to anti-employee rules

I suspect that the recent management decisions to curtail flexible work plans at Yahoo and Best Buy are causing many employees around the whole nation to learn why labor unions became strong 50 to 80 years ago. Regardless of how one feels about “flex work,” there is a history lesson here.

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