Mark Whisenant Disappointed The Rev. Monsignor Ed Lofton Ousted By Charleston County Sheriff's Office
In response to today's front page headline on the Charleston Post and Courier newspaper (http://www.postandcourier.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120524/PC16/120529535/ousted-after-demanding-win)
Mark Whisenant issued the following statement:
'As a Christian and practicing Catholic Mark Whisenant is disappointed in the Sheriff's Department's removal of Monsignor Lofton from the detention facility. Whisenant acknowledges the First Amendment and RLUIPA protections regarding religious practices.'
'We do not agree with Cannon's assessment of his own staff regarding removal of a highly regarded Catholic leader from the facility that 'it's expecting a bit much of us down here on a lower level of legal intellect.' A Sheriff and his staff are expected to have a high degree of legal intellect. Self-deprecating is no excuse for offending the First Amendment and the long-standing American value of religious freedom. How can we expect the Department to enforce the law if they are unable to understand the law? Proper training of Sheriff's Department staff will create a culture of defending constitutional principals, not degrading them.'
'Therefore, if I am elected the next Sheriff of Charleston County, religious practices protected by RLUIPA and our Constitution will unequivocally be permissible at the Detention Center.'
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