I want applaud our local law enforcement for visiting with local Christians to build better community relationships this weekend as part of the National Faith & Blue Weekend. (Area Police Agencies to Observe Faith and Blue Weekend, rockdalenewtoncitizen.com, Oct. 4, 2021.) Unfortunately, our officers will be going beyond community outreach and participating in activities that promote a specific religion. This is a violation of their oaths to uphold our Constitution. While this complaint comes too late to stop their participation in the religious elements of this event, I call on our sheriffs to confine their future involvement to constitutionally permitted activities.

The Faith & Blue Weekend will include a “blessing of the K-9 units at the Newton County Sheriff’s’ Office” and a “corporate prayer” on Sunday. The NCSO’s information officer, Caitlin Jett, informs me that on-duty officers will be participating in those events. Such activities by on-duty law enforcement officers constitute an endorsement of religion prohibited by our federal Constitution.

To be clear, I have no objection to the participation of our law enforcement officers (and their dogs) in the religion of their choice. However, I object when our tax monies are used in this participation or the participation is in a manner that suggests our law enforcement agencies prefer one religion over another.

As I said, I absolutely applaud law enforcement presentations for the secular purpose of improving community relations. I call on our sheriffs to acknowledge that they will confine their future participation to permitted activities.

Roy Evritt

Oxford

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Editor

I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

(1) comment

sdealfitzgerald

Thank you for nicely saying what I was thinkiing. I think it's inappropriate to do this on the clock, or use taxpayer funds to do it. I'd much rather see a concerted effort to be kind and decent with this community, than to make a show of your private faith.

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