So now we hear that the Freedom from Religion Foundation is angry with a Texas trial judge because the judge gave a convicted murderer a Bible at the end of a sentencing hearing.
I believe I’ll weigh in with this: The atheist group needs to settle down and look for more egregious examples of public officials shoving religion down citizens’ throats.
District Judge Tammy Kemp presided over the trial of former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who a jury this week convicted of murder and then sentenced her to 10 years in prison. Guyger shot a man, Botham Jean, believing that Jean was an intruder in her apartment — except that she went to the wrong dwelling and shot Jean in his own place.
Botham Jean’s brother, Brandt, then spoke to the court after the jury sentenced Guyger to prison; he asked the judge if it would be all right if he could hug her brother’s killer. He said he forgave her. Brand Jean and Guyger embraced.
Judge Kemp’s gesture was meant to provide a level of comfort to a woman who is going to spend several years in the custody of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. The Freedom from Religion Foundation believes Kemp’s act of kindness is a form of foisting religion on citizens in a public place.
C’mon! Judge Kemp did not instruct Guyger to read the Bible and to adopt its teachings while she is serving her time. All she did was hand her a holy book. Period. Had she placed some sort of ludicrous caveat on her giving the Bible to Guyger, well, that would be different.
She didn’t. Judge Kemp sought to endorse in some fashion the compassion and grace demonstrated by the brother of the man Guyger had shot to death.
The atheist group needs to give it a rest.