Secretary General Appears on Voice of America
On September 16th, Dr. John Graz, Secretary General of the IRLA, was interviewed by the Voice of America French service about the status of religious freedom in the USA (La liberté religieuse aux USA). The questions focused on the threat to burn the Koran by an unaffiliated minster in Florida. Graz underlined the right of religious freedom which includes the right to publically question any religious practice or belief, but he insisted there is a non-legal obligation to use freedom of speech and religion in ways that demonstrate wisdom and respect - particularly when speaking about volatile issues.
“Freedom is the best tool to create societal harmony," states Graz, "the most peaceful, prosperous and stable nations are those that permit robust freedom of speech and religion. But the best way to use our freedom is to respect each other's religion. We have the right to disagree and to share our differences, but engaging in symbolic attacks on items of great religious significant to others does not make someone the kind of peace maker that our world so desperately needs.”