Response to Rep. Baker from Barbara Finch

February 2, 2007

State Representative Brian L. Baker
Missouri House of Representatives
Room 413A
201 West Capitol Ave.
Jefferson City, MO 65101

Dear Rep. Baker:

We were so delighted to discover that you have taken time out of your busy legislative schedule to visit the web site for Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice! We are always happy when others learn about our organization and its mission and values.

I’m very sorry I didn’t get a chance to meet you at the First Freedom dinner in Jefferson City last Tuesday. I understand, from a letter that you wrote and circulated to your colleagues, that you have some concerns about the positions of some of the organizations sponsoring the dinner. I would like to speak to some of those positions from the standpoint of Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice.

Some of the co-sponsors of the First Freedom dinner were religious organizations. Women’s Voices is not a religious group. However, our positions on social issues are based upon three core beliefs that are common to every religious tradition: honor one another, do acts of kindness, and make peace.

We honor one another by respecting the choices that they make, especially the difficult choices that involve their own sexuality and reproductive health. We do acts of kindness by advocating for the thousands of Missourians who have no health insurance coverage and little access to quality medical care. And we attempt to make peace by not demonizing those who disagree with our views.

We respect your right to your own religious convictions. All we ask in return is that you respect our values and beliefs, and treat us with the same dignity you believe you deserve.

Yours in peace and justice,

Barbara L. Finch
Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice