Greg Kesich’s Feb. 28 column, “Pro-gun faithful treat debate over gun policy more like a holy war,” is compelling in its case for gun reform and provocative in illuminating how gun ideology can become “a kind of religion.”

There is, thankfully, another kind of religion altogether, and it can see us through our deadlock.

There is the kind of religion that does not leap to simplistic ideological answers but begins moral reflection by carefully asking, “What is the situation we face?” Parkland survivors movingly describe theirs.

There is the kind of religion that readily embraces reason and scientific inquiry, not only on gun policy but also on such issues as climate change, economic fairness, creation and evolution, gender and health care, including the full range of reproductive health care.

There is the kind of religion that listens to history. Kesich’s column notes that pawn shop machine gun sales were stopped in 1934. Justice Antonin Scalia once declared that the right to bear arms “is not unlimited.” Nor is free speech an absolute.

The wisdom common to ancient world religions suggests that the only absolute is love. To care or not to care – that is the question, spiritually speaking. Such religion relentlessly challenges us to acknowledge the dangers of our ego’s dark side and our stubborn resistance to what Lincoln called “the better angels of our nature.”

Finally, there is the courageous religion of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, author of “No Future Without Forgiveness.”

Martin Luther had it right: We all have gods, it just depends on which ones.

“Come,” said the Hebrew prophet Isaiah, “let us reason together.”

Rev. Alfred M. Niese

Brunswick