Making a Statement by Robert P. George

Making a Statement

The Manhattan Declaration Is Even More Timely

The Manhattan Declaration is subtitled “A Statement of Christian Conscience”—and that is precisely what it is. One certainly need not be a Christian or a religious believer of any kind to understand and affirm the principles proclaimed and defended in the Manhattan Declaration: the sanctity of human life in all stages and conditions; the dignity of marriage as the conjugal union of husband and wife; religious liberty and the rights of conscience. These principles can be grasped by men and women of good will by the natural light of reason, even apart from any special revelation by God. One’s conscience need not be a specifically Christian conscience to affirm them. And many people of other faiths, and some people who regard themselves as secular, do affirm them.

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Robert P. George is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University (web.princeton.edu/sites/jmadison). His books include In Defense of Natural Law (Oxford University Press) and Conscience and Its Enemies (ISI Books). He has served as chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. He is a senior editor of Touchstone.

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