Washington, DC – Interfaith alliance President Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy issues the following statement in response to the killings of UN Workers in Afghanistan.

I am sad and I am angry. There is no excuse for the killings of the United Nations workers in Afghanistan. Violence can never be the answer to our disagreements. We are fooling ourselves, however, if we continue to believe that the actions we take at home don’t have consequences abroad. Early reports indicate that this violence is a response, unacceptable as it may be, to the burning of a Qur’an in Florida last month by a local pastor. The disrespect he has shown for the Muslim faith has now reflected on the rest of us and has led to the worst possible outcome.

We as a nation must do more to make clear that bigoted rhetoric and action against the Muslim faith will not be tolerated and does not represent what is in the hearts and minds of the majority of Americans. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those killed. But my hope is that we embrace the religious diversity this nation was founded on and model it for the rest of the world. I want to live with that hope.

Interfaith Alliance is a network of people of diverse faiths and beliefs from across the country working together to build a resilient democracy and fulfill America’s promise of religious freedom and civil rights not just for some, but for all. We mobilize powerful coalitions to challenge Christian nationalism and religious extremism, while fostering a better understanding of the healthy boundaries between religion and government. We advocate at all levels of government for an equitable and just America where the freedoms of belief and religious practice are protected, and where all persons are treated with dignity and have the opportunity to thrive. For more information visit interfaithalliance.org.