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Re "Secular disdain for religion" (Opinion, Oct. 21):

Wow! Does Paul Mero of the Sutherland Institute truly believe that all of those who have a "secular mind" (i.e., religiously unaffiliated) are "spectacularly incomplete … deeply conflicted … and chastise everything good and decent."?

That's a sweeping indictment! What cherished religious tenet Mero is practicing when he condemns a whole group of multifarious individuals in such hateful terms?

Does Mero have no secular-minded friends whose moral qualities might mitigate his wholesale denunciation? I could introduce him to some of mine: teachers, musicians, artists, political and community activists, and caring family members who live ethical, compassionate and conscientious lives.

My acquaintances who espouse no religion find meaning and, yes, even spirituality, elsewhere: in relationships, painting, music, work, activism, love of nature.

Far from feeling incomplete and conflicted, they are typically happy, reasonably well-adjusted people who face life's demands and difficulties with good humor and a sense of purpose.

Clearly, Mero's insistence that religion is a basic "human good" is just flat wrong if it encourages this kind of bigotry and narrow-mindedness.

Keller Higbee

Salt Lake City

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